How can we resist the nightmare of global capitalism and the lifestyle it demands? How can we jam the dominant logic of consumerism, imperial war, an abused Third World, and an ember planet? While no doubt daunting, we offer a guide in three parts. Each third targets a different site where capital rears its Achilles heel, where creative forms of resistance take shape and reveal new ways to live.
Under the headings, PSYCHO, ECO and CORPO this list proceeds apace in the twilight of postindustrial capital. We don’t have time as a luxury anymore; in fact, we’re living the end times. So as you use, combine, or complement the following guidelines to counter the system, act now, act fast.
Part I: PSYCHO
Cleanse your mind of the detritus left by consumerist thinking
Mental illness not just a malfunction of the individual
What is the administering of mental health care but a societal conceit to regulate its problematic members? Sure, it does some good; no one questions that counselors can ease the pain of grief, loss, anxiety and the like. But as therapy masquerades as one thing it can too easily work in the service of conformity. Look no further than the gauge used to determine when mental illness is a problem: when it cuts into work time.
Meanwhile, we’re made to feel like symptoms are the product of our own deficiency. They’re individualized, affecting autonomously every human cog in the consumerist ecosystem. But radical psychiatrist RD Laing felt differently, stating “mental disorder is a reaction to the impossible demands that societies place upon certain individuals.” So if millions visit psychologists to tamp down their traumas, why can’t it be our mass culture that’s sick?
Question logical foundations, like “democracy”
Don’t merely accept that we live in a “democracy.” In the West, our democracy is a mirage maintained by Super PACs. This bourgeois democracy is infirm: it’s on the outs.
We need a new grassroots participatory system. In the meantime question the construction of the current political system, and ask others what they believe democracy should mean.
Recognize the plight with others of like mind
Lists are catchy. Whenever you read one you’re probably like, “yeah, I can do that” before forgetting the directions when leaving for work.
Fair enough – so figure out for yourself if you want change. Figure out what makes you unhappy, and if being trapped under capitalist relations and the state that supports them is airing out your bike tires, resolve to change it.
You may feel as though you exist in a vacuum. Be strong and know there are others who feel similarly. Find a way to connect with them.
At last we’re in Winter. It’s the year 2047. A worn scrapbook from the future arrives in your lap. It offers a stunning global vision, a warning to the next generations, a repository of practical wisdom, and an invaluable roadmap which you need to navigate the dark times, and the opportunities, which lie ahead.