John Prine . . .
When I was a child my family would travel,
Down to Western Kentucky where my parents were born.
And there’s a backwards old town that’s often remembered,
So many times that my memories are worn.
And daddy won’t you take me back to Muhlenberg County?
Down by the Green River where Paradise lay,
Well, I’m sorry my son, but you’re too late in asking,
Mister Peabody’s coal train has hauled it away.
That isn’t all that’s been hauled away. The Citizen’s United train has hauled democracy away, the NSA train has hauled the Bill of Rights away, the Free Trade train has hauled millions of jobs away.
The truth is being hauled away.
The rule of law is being hauled away.
Reality itself is being hauled away.
Yeah. There’s heavy traffic on the rails. And blood on the tracks. Everywhere.
Robert Reich, Why There’s No Outcry . . .
People ask me all the time why we don’t have a revolution in America, or at least a major wave of reform similar to that of the Progressive Era or the New Deal or the Great Society. Middle incomes are sinking, the ranks of the poor are swelling, almost all the economic gains are going to the top, and big money is corrupting our democracy. So why isn’t there more of a ruckus?
The answer is complex, but three reasons stand out.
First, the working class is paralyzed with fear it will lose the jobs and wages it already has.
Second, students don’t dare rock the boat. They’re laden with debt.
Third and finally, the American public has become so cynical about government that many no longer think reform is possible.
So many outrages, so many betrayals, so many times . . .
The earth has been ravaged and it’s still being ravaged . . .
The coal company came with the world’s largest shovel,
And they tortured the timber and stripped all the land.
Well they dug for their coal ’til the land was forsaken,
Then they wrote it all down as the progress of man.
Progress like off-shore drilling, progress like pipeline “spills” and fracking, progress like lethal chemical plants and Fukushima, progress like gunfire in our schools and resurgent racism, while global warming escalates and inequality goes off the charts and too-big-to-fail banks just keep getting bigger. Capitalism is functioning so well that 85 class warfare criminals have more wealth than half the population of the world.
And they’re writing it all down as the progress of man.
Well we can write too.
Howard Zinn . . .
Civil disobedience is not our problem. Civil obedience is our problem. Our problem is that people all over the world have obeyed the dictates of leaders…and millions have been killed because of this obedience…Our problem is that people are obedient allover the world in the face of poverty and starvation and stupidity, and war, and cruelty. Our problem is that people are obedient while the jails are full of petty thieves, while the grand thieves are running the country. That’s our problem.
Chris Hedges . . .
A culture that does not grasp the vital interplay between morality and power, which mistakes management techniques for wisdom, and fails to understand that the measure of a civilization is its compassion, not its speed or ability to consume, condemns itself to death.
Martin Luther King Jr. . .
The time comes when silence is betrayal. That time has come for us today.
The winds are blowing, the skies are turning grey. Democracy’s sun is setting, but it will rise another day.
Remember fallen friends. Carry on for them. Stay strong, speak truth to power, keep the faith . . .