I found a quote in Hunter S Thompson’s ‘Hell’s Angels’ that says it all… Says it better than Foucault might. So here it is…
“American law enforcement procedures have never been designed to control large groups of citizens in rebellion, but to protect the social structure against specifically criminal acts, or persons. The underlying assumption has always been that the police and the citizenry form a natural alliance against evil and dangerous crooks, who should certainly be arrested on sight and shot if they resist.
There are indications however, that this ‘natural alliance’ might be going the way of the Maginot Line. More and more often the police are finding themselves in conflict with whole blocs of the citizenry, none of them criminals in the traditional sense of the word, but many as potentially dangerous – to the police – as any armed felon. This is particularly true in situations involving groups of Negroes and teenagers. The Watts riot in Los Angeles in 1965 was a classic example of this new alignment. A whole community turned on the police with such a vengeance that the National Guard had to be called in. Yet few of the rioters were criminals – at least not until the riot began. It may be that America is developing a whole new category of essentially social criminals… people who threaten the police and the traditional social structure even when they are breaking no law… because they view The Law with contempt and the police with distrust, and this abiding resentment can explode without warning at the slightest provocation.”
That was Hunter S talking. Now it’s my turn.
It isn’t just American law enforcement that is trained in this manner. They all are. Everywhere. Everywhere, while people prate on about democracy, the truth is, the population stands on one side and the State on the other. This doesn’t show in posh areas where people are fat and happy to be slaves of the corporations and the State, where people draw advantages from this moronic soul-sucking enslavement. But in areas where people get no benefits, where they see only the backend filth of modern capitalist democracy (motto: steal from the poor, give to the rich, make them all vote every now and then so they’ll think we care…), people still get angry, and they’re not afraid to express that anger, unlike the fattened, frightened liberals who hide inside the State’s pockets.
What I especially like is the description of the rioters in London by the authorities as ‘greedy and criminal’. As shockingly violent. PERMIT ME TO LAUGH!
This from a state that finances illegal invasions, massive land grabs, resource thefts, illegal prisons and occupations – all of which send its finances spiralling down world-threatening sewers of public debt – AND THEN resorts to further stealing from its own population by cutting off already meager social welfare programs to ‘fight said debt’ (which is in reality nothing but a huge f*cking subsidy for massive corporations – read banks, oil companies, pharmaceutical companies, arms manufacturers et al)… I say, NO such state is justified in preaching moral behavior or ‘respect’ and ‘responsibility’ to rioting, looting youths. Such a state has lost its moral legitimacy to do so.
Do I justify theft and crime? No. But I don’t justify it in Iraq and Afghanistan EITHER! I don’t call it exporting democracy or some such other f*cking unbelievable bullsh*t!
So let’s face it folks. If these young ‘uns have learned that violence and theft are all that pay, it is because the West has a grand, celebrated tradition of such high-handed brutality. Remember colonialism? (Which is now talked about like it was a grand philanthropic project of drinking tea and chatting about culture?) Remember slavery? The genocidal destruction of the native peoples of Australia, New Zealand, Latin America, the Caribbean, North America in order that their land be stolen? Remember Manifest Destiny? Or maybe you recall the wars in which all those European and colonial poor fought in order to receive nothing but more menial jobs upon their return? Or perhaps you remember grand gestures of state generosity like the massive slaughter of men, women and children to avenge the Paris Commune? No? Well I do. So yes. Greed and criminality? Sure. Shocking? No, not so much. This being the history of the modern West and the mainstay of its current ‘foreign policy’, greed and criminality aren’t shocking at all. If anything, they are perfectly logical. That such things don’t happen more often is a testament to the faithful and dogged work done by the media and the publishers, the manufacturers of discourse and consent, in making you believe the State still cares. And that being able to wear miniskirts constitutes freedom and voting once every few years equals democracy.
But anger is an energy*. And like George Carlin said (and I paraphrase), since the Owners of society put property above life, things above humanity, damaging property and stealing things amounts to hitting at the State. So, like him, I don’t give a crap about people stealing private property and things. I care much more about the chronic theft of people’s freedom and self-respect while corporations get fat and disgustingly, obscenely rich. I care much more about governments that give tax money to the rich, then steal the hard-won social welfare that is due to the people who have worked for it and who have in fact financed the lives of the rich and famous.
Fact is, the State can routinely use the police against you, while it demands that YOU remain peaceful. This is barbarism, but it goes unnoticed because we’re all hypnotized into believing this is democracy. Should protest be peaceful? I have no idea. I guess it would have to depend on whether your protest is noticed, heeded, or not. If not, and we are in two camps anyway, things will tend to take on a life of their own. And by that time, it’s going to be too late.
And in any case. This is not protest here. This is a lesson learned. Centuries of the same lesson learned. Subconsciously of course (where all true lessons are learned). Dialogue is useless. And you are only respected by the Western state if you steal, kill, rape and brutalize.
Of course… Stealing from those who steal from you every day also does tend to feel good. But none of you need worry. At the end of the day, many of these people will be found, identified and jailed. And State power will probably prevail again.
But not for very long. Because not ALL of us are fooled. And things are getting worse. Much worse. So even if I’m not out in the street – because I don’t give a shit about mobile phones or sneakers or whatever - I know the truth.
I know that none of these preaching authorities have ANY right to call ANYONE greedy or criminal. To do so, they would have to get out of Iraq for one thing. And Afghanistan. AND swear not to rape their populations even further to solve a debt they have wracked up with colossal, unprecedented levels of greed.
It’s what I call the Africa-environment syndrome: we all want to be free to destroy our environment if it means more jobs, more money, more gadgets for us! But if a poor African kills a gorilla for a few bucks, he’s a BAD BAD BRUTAL GORILLA-KILLING BACKWARD PUDDY TAT! Blame the small guy. While you hide your crime behind grand moral principles. It always pays.
But luckily, not everyone believes this garbage anymore. Hallelujah.
* taken from song by PIL, Rise.