WORK-LIFE BALANCE / JUL. 25, 2014
version 3, draft 3

Obeying Our Masters

“Though the rules of the road have been lodged,
it’s only people’s games you’ve got to dodge.”

-- Bob Dylan



It has become incumbent upon us that we should obey our masters. From an early age, we were taught to listen to our parents, our elders. Respect was meant to be ingrained from our earliest rules. However, growing up, there is a difference between reverence for our caretakers and blind obedience to our polity of managers, bosses, supervisors, owners, politicians.

Perhaps the ugliest word, currently in the English language, is Politician. Add corporations to the mix, and we’ve got an ugly setup on our hands. But these are our most dominating and influential masters, whether we are aware of it or not.

The marketplace, then, is the defining emblematic threshold of our particular country’s economy. Forget the flag. Capitalism’s means are tentacle to our currencies. We need currency -- money -- in order to live and buy things. (So we are taught.) And in order to achieve, or “earn,” money, we must perform something in exchange for our ways of living. Thus markets, economically speaking, shape our roles in society. It’s a rare thing, if ever, to have it be the other way around.

If we do not want to participate in society, then what? We become outcasts, exiles, different, weirdoes, artists, homeless, disbarred, disillusioned. And maybe even ridiculed.

However, it is barely addressed that we should be critiquing the very people which make up our rules and regulations, running our state, local and federal governments. Also, if we have anything to say about our bosses and managers, it is usually without their knowledge. Rarely do we repudiate our masters. Blind obedience is most respected and revered. Only we are cursing under our breath.

What a terrible farce. Is this not backwards? What exactly is happening to the rebellious spirit upon which this country was ostensibly founded?

Well, that’s a question for those that have the time to talk about it. Or we leave it for conversations while we are drinking heavily, stoned and loose enough to finally speak about things that actually matter. That which is affecting us in our daily lives is calmly conversed for discourse and sociability. Or it’s just more gossip in the interim of returning to the Rat Race. Probably we are waiting until we’ve been acutely slapped on the wrists, in order for us to act, adjust, change.

Then we howl and yelp! Awake from our sleeping. Everything which kept us in harness is suddenly realised to be nothing more than a pigeon-hole. If nothing else, these are the types of moments that enlighten us to something more meaningful.

Why some of us wait so long to be more cognizant of their life’s purpose is for better men to decide. These days, it appears that our grandest and most fortified philosophy is Work. Work means money. Money means things. Things mean happiness.

Bracelets, diamond rings, clothes, shoes, hats, bags of pot, cases of beer, gas, electricity, water, football games, double cheeseburgers, prescriptions for pharmaceuticals, plays, concerts, furniture, plates, glasses, seeds, soil, diapers, lotions, deodorants, soaps, paints, land, rent, bar tabs, taxes. Everything costs money. But what does money cost?

The federal government, in fact, borrows money from the Federal Reserve, at interest. When the Federal (or any) government can’t pay its bills?

Things cost more money. (And that’s not including all the other demons of finance, economics, sociological impacts, rent increases, developers, speculators, et cetera.)

Roughly, this is called inflation. Of course, we are told that Central Banks are there to stop inflation. But what they are really doing is injecting hot air into a dead and dying dream. That money, though, which can be made is, for some, very real. It just means that you have to step over a few rotting corpses.

And what happens when you can’t pay your bills? It’s likely to be inferred that you are some sort of derelict, a criminal, quite nearly.

Do we not see the irony of all this? Blind obedience to criminals and to criminal activity at our highest levels of government and law-making means that we are absolving ourselves of the control over our own destinies.

We have been taught to abide by our elders, our leaders -- no matter the circumstance. When do we begin to question those who yield power over us? When do we see them for who or what they really are?

When do we stand up against being a slave? To a mockery of a system which is called “Democracy.”

There is nothing democratic about being manipulated to believe in lies. There is nothing democratic about having our labour, wealth, currencies and taxes, going to criminals, war-mongers, oil tycoons, media conglomerates, monopolistic corporations; and also to the financing of bombs, guns, terrorism, propaganda, drugs, human-trafficking, torture, and the destabilisation of Third World countries.

A lot goes on behind the scenes. And blind obedience is the tool of the tyrant. As United States citizens, we keep funding and policing the globe.

Until we decide to change, the world is out of our hands. Let us, at the very least, realise what that means. How different things could be.

Participation in a system which steps on the heads of its vulnerable and weak. Is that really so ideal?

Capitalism is degenerative because it exploits the individual. Unless he or she is willing to go along all the crimes against humanity which are fulfilled in their name.

That’s where blind obedience comes in. So long as an expansive silence is maintained, nobody will ever know the difference.

But then again, we could begin to open our eyes to the world around us. And, better yet, we could open our eyes to our own paths, our own journeys.

We could think and decide for ourselves.

 

Image Sourced:  Anonymous

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