I know, I know, we're constantly told that we're being out-framed and out-messaged. Horse sh*t. We're smarter than they are, wittier, pithier, more attuned to the perspectives of those we're speaking to. But we don't own the networks and the newspapers. They do. Mammoth corporations with an agenda that usually lines up with that of right-wing gangsters control the microphones. Stop the masochism! Break a frame over your knee. Spit out the sound bites. Ask not how you can save a political party that doesn't want your help in a single sentence. Ask what in your life you can sacrifice, what you can put at risk to force our government to do what we the people demand.
What would become of us if we no longer spent our money on advertising in the corporate media: no more full-page ads in the pages of newspapers that sell wars and stomp out justice, no more hundreds of millions of dollars dumped self-destructively into television networks that protect plutocracy and disempower people every day? What would happen? Would we cease to exist? Would we no longer count as clever? Would our wits be wasted?
Don't get me wrong. I like nothing better than crafting messages, writing speeches, and running my mouth. And I'll take a back seat on bashing the Democrats to no one. But these are not the most effective places for us to put our energy if we want to change our society. These are distractions and delusions. These are frantic repeated voting in online polls, panels for speaking to the converted, meetings with powerpoints, mass masturbation, means becoming ends.
What if we stopped imagining that propriety and respectability could win the day, that there was hope for bipartisanship, that lobbyists for peace and accountability are more effective if not tainted by association with protesters? What if we realized that pressure can be more powerful than politeness, and stopped putting our relationships with Congressional staffers ahead of the need to force their bosses to do their jobs or be harassed and humiliated and hounded out of office?
Here are some ideas for actions you can take, large and small:
Here's a network of nonviolent activists:
We have the energy. We have the numbers. We don't have our priorities straight.