IT IS time to stop the snarky comments over the culture-war fence and pay attention to the vast, pitiless machine which is rolling over all our houses.
People often object to yet another piece moaning about this or that. They are right to do so. Complaining whilst doing nothing is the pastime of losers.
I have decided it is time we start talking about how to win. By ‘we’ I mean people who are not mad, not part of the elite, and not more concerned with hating our neighbours for daring to disagree with us than with the gigantic savage machine devouring everything of value in the world.
It is time for regime change, and that charitable act should of course begin at home.
No one voted for any of this
No one, Left or Right, voted for the seismic changes brought in over the last 40 years. What this means is obvious: you and I have no say in the way we are ruled.
Here are some examples:
· ugly, rubbish housing
· light industrial sheds everywhere
· the transfer of middle-class wealth to corporations, universities
· BlackRock, Lloyds Bank buying family houses above market rates . . .
· . . . to create a population of permanent rent serfs
· education has become the credential industry
· lifelong debt is now normalised
· plastic in our food, oceans, water and bodies
· corrupt and insane institutions
· customer service = corporate self-defence (they see you as the enemy)
· epidemic mental illness
· surging crime
· the vanishing of the high street into Jeff Bezos’s tax-free account
· information monopolies
· ‘free’ online services = in exchange for your movements, emotions, thoughts and dreams
· fake food
· freedom of speech, movement, association removed at will
· crisis as a system of population management
· useless political parties which despise you equally
You can add your own to this list. Briefly, the Conservatives have conserved nothing but their own greed. The progressives are on the same bus, but waving a rainbow and not a national flag. Both parties are in harmony with the vast corporations and elites which do as they please with our lives, whilst instructing us to like it.
From the many, one big problem
What is the One Big Problem? Each of our ills – social, environmental, mental, institutional, political – derives from the fact that our societies are scaled inhumanly. Our enemy is a vast, overwhelming system which is basically anti-life. It wants you fat, passive, angry, patterned on fake reality tropes, childless, isolated and riddled with anxiety. Broken people cannot get off their knees to resist. They crave consolation. Presents, no future.
The ruin made of all of our nations has taken place in the last 40 years, alongside the creation of a global market system which has displaced every meaningful local culture and custom. It is as if we had all been made foreigners by some worldwide tourist industry, making of our homelands a place of last resort. This is the reason everyone craves escape – into drugs, holidays, games, TV, weird identities and new experiences, because they are trying to flee the uncanny sense that they no longer belong anywhere.
If we had a society based on a human scale these problems would largely disappear on their own. This should be the impossible demand of all reasonable people – a society with a human face. This is the reason for regime change.
Life is about choices
There are two options, and one of them is whingeing. The other is doing something. What can we do? Quite a lot.
I have made a long list of things to do which will improve your life and help you to focus on what really matters. There is a great deal you can change. The list proceeds from simple everyday habits to large-scale organised resistance.
To put it very simply, it is time to stop helping the enemy. Start helping yourself instead.
The Sarvodaya of the West
Gandhi went around wearing a homespun tablecloth and dissolved the power of the greatest empire the world had ever seen – with talk. He called one of his movements ‘Sarvodaya’ which means something like ‘uplifting’.
I am calling for a Sarvodaya of the West. We must lift ourselves up from the filth we inhabit and be better than we were. We must cease to co-operate in our own destruction. We must not participate any longer in our own humiliation, and for the sake of our children we must now set about the work of reclaiming the world from degradation. Every single issue over which we bitterly disagree can be solved by halting the mass scale machine of global corporate consumerism. The regime is a vast apparatus for which we are all but food. It thrives on dependence and attention.
Make it die of hunger.
What is there to live for? For life, for love, for the reverence of beauty and of the splendour of the natural world. For friendship and for family, for kinship and for mutual respect. For a life with a higher spiritual purpose than one restricted to the purchase of ever cheaper, ever worse consumer trash in the company of strangers.
Reclaim your mind, your body and the meaning of your life from the poisonous influence of the regime. Resist by relearning how to live. Make friends, not enemies. Ordinary people like ourselves need one another to resist the machine which will otherwise destroy us all, as it replaces everything precious and fine with itself.
So little of ourselves belongs to us. Take back what you have given in haste, for convenience. It is your soul.
This is an extract from my manifesto for Regime Change At Home. If you would like to read more about how to foster the habit of victory in these dispiriting times, you can find the full piece here.