Cognitive Dissonance

"Democracy! Bah! When I hear that I reach for my feather boa!" - Allen Ginsberg

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President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Speech before the 1936 Democratic National Convention, June 27,1936


Image: Protests in Wisconsin (Eric Thayer / Getty Images)

"For out of this modern civilization economic royalists carved new dynasties… Through new uses of corporations, banks and securities, new machinery of industry and agriculture, of labor and capital - all undreamed of by the [Founding] Fathers - the whole structure of modern life was impressed into this royal service. There was no place among this royalty for our many thousands of small-businessmen and merchants who sought to make a worthy use of the American system of initiative and profit…

It was natural and perhaps human that the privileged princes of these new economic dynasties, thirsting for power, reached out for control over government itself. They created a new despotism and wrapped it in the robes of legal sanction. In its service, new mercenaries sought to regiment the people, their labor, and their property. And as a result the average man once more confronts the problem that faced the Minute Man.

The hours men and women worked, the wages they received, the conditions of their labor - these had passed beyond the control of the people, and were imposed by this new industrial dictatorship. The savings of the average family, the capital of the small-businessmen, the investments set aside for old age - other people’s money - these were tools which the new economic royalty used to dig itself in.

Protests in Ohio (Jay LaPrete / AP Photo)Image: Protests in Ohio (Jay LaPrete / AP Photo)

Those who tilled the soil no longer reaped the rewards which were their right. The small measure of their gains was decreed by men in distant cities. Throughout the nation, opportunity was limited by monopoly. Individual initiative was crushed in the cogs of a great machine. The field open for free business was more and more restricted. Private enterprise, indeed, became too private. It became privileged enterprise, not free enterprise. Liberty requires opportunity to make a living - a living decent according to the standard of the time, a living which gives man not only enough to live by, but something to live for.

For too many of us the political equality we once had won was meaningless in the face of economic inequality. A small group had concentrated into their own hands an almost complete control over other people’s property, other people’s money, other people’s labor - other people’s lives. For too many of us life was no longer free, liberty no longer real, men could no longer follow the pursuit of happiness.

Against economic tyranny such as this, the American citizen could appeal only to the organized power of government. The collapse of 1929 showed up the despotism for what it was… The royalists of the economic order have conceded that political freedom was the business of the government, but they have maintained that economic slavery was nobody’s business. They granted that the government could protect the citizen in his right to vote, but they denied that the government could do anything to protect the citizen in his right to work and his right to live.

Today we stand committed to the proposition that freedom is no half-and-half affair. If the average citizen is guaranteed equal opportunity in the polling place, he must have equal opportunity in the market place. These economic royalists complain that we seek to overthrow the institutions of America. What they really complain of is that we seek to take away their power. Our allegiance to American institutions requires the overthrow of this kind of power. In vain they seek to hide behind the flag and the Constitution. In their blindness they forget what the flag and the Constitution stand for. Now, as always, they stand for democracy, not tyranny; for freedom, not subjection; and against a dictatorship by mob rule and the over-privileged alike.

Indiana protests - Image: Alan Petersime, The Star / AP Photo
Indiana protests (Image: Alan Petersime, The Star / AP Photo)

The defeats and victories of these years have given to us as a people a new understanding of our government and of ourselves… We do not see faith, hope, and charity as unattainable ideals, but we use them as stout supports of a nation fighting the fight for freedom in a modern civilization.

  • Faith - in the soundness of democracy in the midst of dictatorships.
  • Hope - renewed because we know so well the progress we have made.
  • Charity - in the true spirit of that grand old word. For charity literally translated from the original means love, the love that understands, that does not merely share the wealth of the giver, but in true sympathy and wisdom helps men to help themselves.

We are poor indeed if this nation cannot afford to lift from every recess of American life the dread fear of the unemployed that they are not needed in the world. We cannot afford to accumulate a deficit in the books of human fortitude. In the place of the palace of privilege we seek to build a temple out of faith and hope and charity… Better the occasional faults of a government that lives in a spirit of charity than the consistent omissions of a government frozen in the ice of its own indifference.

There is a mysterious cycle in human events. To some generations much is given. Of other generations much is expected. This generation of Americans has a rendezvous with destiny.

Image: Steve Bloom, The Olympian / Steve Bloom
Image: Protests in Washington State (Steve Bloom, The Olympian / Steve Bloom)

(Source: austincc.edu)

Filed under fdr inspiration working class union unions organized labor

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alchemistique:

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jesscuhh:

“In my 19 years not once have I ever been confronted by an individual who realized independently that I was raised by a gay couple. And you know why? Because the sexual orientation of my parents has had zero effect on the content of my character.”

I love this video, and I love this guy for everything he said.

Please take the time to watch this 3 minute video!

This video makes me proud me to stand among those who care about the value of people as opposed to the labels we place on them. Reblog this video if you believe in equality.

I love this.

At 19 years old, this guy is an AMAZING public speaker. Now, if only we could convince Virginians of this. 

stop the h8.

I’m gonna reference this video in the paper I’m writing in my AP English class about the legalization of same sex marriage

This guy is such an amazing speaker.
This was beautiful :)

I didn’t expect to start crying.

Standing motherfucking ovation.

Inspiration.

Filed under GLBTQ GLBTQ Rights Zach Wahls beauty inspiration

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The moment we begin to fear the opinions of others and hesitate to tell the truth that is in us, and from motives of policy are silent when we should speak, the divine floods of light and life no longer flow into our souls.
Elizabeth Cady Stanton

Filed under quotes inspiration belief opinion

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(My ask box ate a question about 3 songs that inspired me during my civil rights lawsuit against the University of Wyoming. So I’m posting them)

"Act III, Scene 2" by Saul Williams, feat. Zach De La Rocha

Lyrics:

This is a call out to all the youth in the ghettos, suburbs, villages, townships.
To all the kids who download this song for free.
By any means.
To all the kids short on loot but high on dreams.
To all the kids watching T.V., like, “Yo, I wish that was me.”
And all the kids pressing rewind on Let’s Get Free.
I hear you.
To all the people within the sound of my voice.

Spit for the hated, the reviled, the unrefined, the no ones, the nobodies, the last in line.
Spit for the hated, the reviled, the unrefined, the no ones, the nobodies, the last in line.

I didn’t vote for this state of affairs.
My emotional state’s got me prostrate, fearing my fears.
In all reality I’m under prepared.
'Cause I'm ready for war but not sure if I'm ready to care.
And that’s why I’m under prepared.
'Cause I'm ready to fight, but most fights have me fighting back tears.
'Cause the truth is really I'm scared.
Not scared of the truth, but just scared of the length you’ll go to fight it.
I tried to hold my tongue, son.
I tried to bite it.
I’m not trying to start a riot or incite it.
'Cause Brutus is an honorable man.
It’s just coincidence that oil men would wage war on an oil rich land.
And this one goes out to my man, taking cover in the trenches with a gun in his hand, then gets home and no one flinches when he can’t feed his fam.
But Brutus is an honorable man.

Spit for the hated, the reviled, the unrefined, the no ones, the nobodies, the last in line.
Spit for the hated, the reviled, the unrefined, the no ones, the nobodies, the last in line.

If you have tears prepare to shed them now.
For you share the guilt of blood spilt in accordance with the Dow Jones.
Dow drops fresh crop skull and bones.
A machete in the heady: Hutu, Tutsi, Leone.
An Afghani in a shanty.
Doodle dandy yank on!
An Iraqi in Gap khaki.
Coca Coma come on!
Be ye bishop or pawn, in the streets or the lawn, you should know that these example could go on and on and what since does it make to keep your ears to the street?
As long as oils in the soil, truth is never concrete.
So we dare to represent those with the barest of feet.
'Cause the laws to which we're loyal keep the soil deplete.
It’s our job to not let history repeat.

Spit for the hated, the reviled, the unrefined, the no ones, the nobodies, the last in line.
Spit for the hated, the reviled, the unrefined, the no ones, the nobodies, the last in line.

So here’s the plan.
The ides of march are always at hand.
And when the power hungry strike, they strike the poorest of man.
And if you dare put up a fight, they’ll come and fight for your land.
And they’ll call it liberation or salvation.
A call to the youth!
Your freedom ain’t so free, it’s just loose.
But the power of your voice could redirect every truth.
Shift and shape the world you want and keep your fears in a noose.
Let them dangle from a banner star spangled.
I’m willing and able.
To lift my dreams up out of their cradle.
Nurse and nurture my ideals ‘til they’re much more than a fable.
I can be all I can be and do much more than I’m paid to.
And I won’t be a slave to what authorities say do.
My desire is to live within a nation on fire, where creative passions burn and raise the stakes ever higher.
Where no person is addicted top some twisted supplier who promotes the sort of freedom sold to the highest buyer.
We demand a truth naturally at one with the land, not a plant that photosynthesizes bombs on demand, or a search for any weapons we let fall from our hands.
I got beats and a plan. I’m gonna do what I can.
And what you do is question everything they say do, every goal ideal or value they keep pushing on you.
If they ask you to believe it question whether it’s true.
If they ask you to achieve, is it for them or for you.
You’re the one they’re asking to go carry a gun.
Warfare ain’t humanitarian.
You’re scaring me, son.
Why not fight to feed the homeless, jobless, fight inflation?!
Why not fight for our own healthcare and our education?!
And instead, invest in that erasable lead, ‘cause their twisted propaganda can’t erase all the dead.
And the pile of corpses pyramid on top of our heads.
Or nevermind, said the shotgun to the head.

Filed under Saul Williams Act III Scene II Shakespeare Music Obsession Love inspiration