The Sleeping Citizen

In this post, I am going to lay out some thoughts on Civics; greek-style, whole-person civics.  I am going to explain how my ideals regarding social mechanics affect my participation in MicCheck, and the end results I hope to see.

I hope you will join me.  What I mean by that, is this; Please read my thoughts and feel free to comment as you see fit.  I will try to do my best and answer questions or address discussion as it happens.

I would like to open with a quote from Murray Bookchin.  Specifically from a book called ‘Post-Scarcity Anarchism’, where he touches a bit on the necessary pre-conditions, if you will, for the creation of a ’rounded society’, a ‘rational’ society perhaps.  He also steps beyond pre-conditions and examines the possible conditions of a liberated society.  For this, I think, he is unfairly tossed aside as ‘utopian’; in fact, he addresses this quite head-on and goes on to explain the difference between utopian and eutopian, the latter of which he prefers.

In this quote, he discusses what the transitional period toward a rounded society might look like.  The quote follows a bit where he explains that there can be no separation of the revolutionary process from the revolutionary goal — “A society based on self-administration must be achieved by means of self-administration” in other words.

“If we define ‘power’ as the power of man over man, then power can only be destroyed by the very process in which man acquires power over his own life and in which he not only ‘discovers’ himself but, more meaningfully, formulates his selfhood in all social dimensions.  Freedom so conceived, cannot be ‘delivered’  to an individual as the ‘end product’ of a ‘revolution’ — Much less a revolution achieved by the social philistines who are hypnotized by the trappings of authority and power.” –Murray Bookchin

I think the ideas Murray Bookchin explains here are not particularly new  concepts (not only because he wrote them in the 60s,) I think they are expressions of a wider belief many people hold on to.  However, the ferocious nature of our current society doesn’t leave much room for the expression of these feelings, and so people turn cynical and quietly loath against Society.  This loathing shows itself quite plainly in the way our Society at large tends to let our existence slide slowly into obsolescence.  The way people flout the ‘rules’ without concern, the way those in power openly flaunt their abuses, the murders in middle class neighborhoods with no show of concern.

We are taught to keep our heads down and shut up.  Or, as I heard a woman say on the bus about someone getting abused by the police; “As long as it ain’t me, it’s all right.

My focus in #MCWS is not about Banks, Corporations, or the Government.  Those things are all tools used quite effectively to prevent true Personhood, Citizenship.  They know that a rounded society would have no place for hierarchy and dominance, for a ‘winner or loser’ mentality.  My focus is pushing back that heavy cloth and re-awaken the Citizen — To, hopefully, help those around me find a common concern, a renewal of the embrace of Society.

I think the first steps are relatively easy in nature, but difficult in scope.  To remind those around you that they can take personal responsibility, Stewardship, of the world nearest to them.  I think the easiest way to do this is to give people one relatively easy step they can take to affect change.  One way they can use something they already have in a new way, and to help them find inspiration in these tiny changes.

I think the possibilities for change are endless as long as we continue to foster self-management and the responsibility that comes along with that — The spontaneous creation of rational community, not just economic concerns lashed between individuals simply by geography or political estate.  A Society based off of mutual concern and face-to-face decision making.

Ultimately, I don’t hope to see people join #MCWS, necessarily.  Having more people power around is great; the results we get from people’s involvement is wonderful.  However, not everyone shares the exact concerns, the exact priorities that we do.

To that end what I hope to see, ultimately, is people taking that spark of empowerment and knowledge to create their own group based on their unique ethics and considerations — To create something great, composed of all the knowledge and experience of the individuals involved in that group of friends.  Our Call To Friendship isn’t just about us — it’s about you, and your friends most of all.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>