Living without fear-Kate Powers

Another response from another valued member of our community. Check out what Kate Powers has to say about what it means to be free and why she lives the way that she lives.

If you like what she says or want to know more, send in a comment and get the discussion going. Or, feel free to send in your own answers. You can check the questions out here or if you’re familiar with them you can send an email directly to:

thetimehascome.bethechange@gmail.com

If you’re enjoying the conversation, sign up to follow the blog. As things progress we are going to be discussing more questions, share some good news and also start thinking of ways to inflict meaningful change in our own lives along with bringing about the same meaningful change in the world.

Here’s what Kate has to say:

What does it mean to be free?
To me, freedom is the ability to live without fear. It is to be unrestrained by the chains that so often bind us: unjust laws, social immobility, one’s own negative thoughts. Freedom affords the opportunity to exist exactly as you are, unafraid of the consequences of being yourself. Freedom is knowing that you can express your love openly and speak your mind unabashedly, unfettered by the threat of losing friends, family, or your personal liberty. It is the peace of mind that comes with living on a healthy and well-preserved planet, and the empowerment to fight back against the forces that seek to destroy it. Freedom means shattering every glass ceiling, from the ones we place on ourselves to the ones embedded in the fabric of our society. To be free is to recognize that we are only free when we respect and validate each other’s right to exist, for a threat to the freedom of one is a threat to the freedom of us all. As such, we must continually fight to preserve freedom for ourselves and for our fellow humans, especially for those who are unable to fight for themselves. There will always exist powerful individuals who seek to limit or erase our freedom, so we must not be complacent in freedom’s pursuit. The attainment of freedom is a continual process rather than irrevocable privilege. With freedom comes hope, fulfillment, and empowerment, but also great responsibility, and we must honor this responsibility above all else.

Why do I live the way I live?
I try to live my life based on my personal value set. These values include the attainment of education, giving back to society, experiencing new cultures, caring for animals, and creating and strengthening personal relationships. These values are reflected in everything I do. I am currently pursuing a master’s degree with the goal of obtaining a fulfilling career in non-profit management or the government, where I hope to make a difference in the lives of others. I travel as often as possible, in an effort to visit new lands, meet interesting people, and taste foreign cuisines. I strongly support animal adoption and am a firm believer in the benefits of the animal-human bond, my own pets are an immense source of joy and companionship for me. I prefer to build strong, intimate relationships with a smaller group of people than to have a large group of acquaintances, and I truly cherish my friends, classmates, and family members with whom I am deeply connected and committed to.

I moved away from my hometown when I was 18, in search of experiences that I couldn’t attain in the confines of a small, homogenous community. I’ve spent the last seven years living in Los Angeles, a beautiful, diverse, living, breathing city that I have grown to love and respect. I adore the food, cultures, people, weather, and the geography of my city and I am thankful that I had the courage to leave behind everything I knew and start a new life at a young age. I’ve never regretted my decision and while I miss my family dearly, I know I am exactly where I am supposed to be (at least for now!)

In sum, I try to live my life in accordance to my own personal beliefs and values. I am far from perfect, but I am proud of the person I am and I look forward to many more years of growth and experience in my future. I have been extremely privileged in my life and I don’t fail to recognize that privilege even for a moment. I guess my ultimate goal in life is to use the advantages I’ve been given to make the world a better place for those around me and to fight for a more equitable world for us all.

What’s next?

We’ve had the chance to hear from several people in response to this weeks questions. Next week we will start looking at some new questions as well as start taking a deeper look at how much out actions impact the lives of others. It is easy to lose sight of this in our daily lives so to get The Human Revolution going we are going to start figuring out ways to share our inter-dependency.

Again, follow the blog, contribute by answering the questions or responding to some of the answers already posted and, of course, spread the word!

Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose…-Connie Jones

Connie Jones, another member of the world who has been forced to step out of her own skin to adapt to life in different situations, is weighing in on this week’s questions: What does it mean to be free? and Why do I live the way that I live? Two tough questions, but that can be therapeutic to try and answer.

When you finish reading what Connie has to say, take a few moments to write out your own response. You’ll surely find that talking about this stuff will help. If you want to see the questions again and remind yourself what Voices is all about, all the info is here or you can send your responses directly to:

thetimehascome.bethechange@gmail.com.

They will be posted here unedited. Just be yourself, speak your mind and don’t be afraid. Not sure how to answer the question, then maybe let us know what the word “freedom” makes you think of, or how you express it in your daily life, at work, at school, with your friends, with your family. There is not one answer to these questions, but that’s the point.

Here’s what Connie has to say:

To be free is to be many things…

It means to be your own decider: the decider of what I can wear, where I can live, what I can do with my own body, what I can say, and what I can see and read.

It also means to not have a plan: to go where you choose, stay as long as you want, sleep in, come and go as you please, have no time limits.

It means to be in control: of my own actions, of who my friends are, who I can love, what I believe or don’t believe in.

It means to not be denied: Your rights as a human, protection to your family, proper medical attention, your chance to learn, grow, and achieve.

It means to have no one else hold you back: To be creative, to speak out, to eat that second piece of cake, to make mistakes.

Why do I live the way I live?

I don’t really know how to define ‘how I live.’ This is a pretty broad for me. Maybe it’s because I am constantly trying to figure this idea out and I am not always happy with the way I live right now so maybe it’s a sensitive issue.  How I do live and how I want to live are still different things that I haven’t been able to quite bring together.

I have lived in Germany for 2 years now. Something I have learned in this time and continue to learn is that I need to do things that scare me in order to move forward.  I try to live my life this way, but it is not an everyday occurrence, and the high of doing something new/ scary doesn’t always last as long as other times. I have also learned that most of the time, one needs to create the opportunities and not wait for them to come around. But the truth is that where I sometimes take these leaps or close my eyes and jump, I also find myself waiting….

This is many times out of fear; fear of losing precious time, fear of not having money, fear of isolation, fear of failure (there, I said it!).

It comes also out of not always being conscious of what has become status quo. Comfort is…well…comforting and when we get into that nest of comfort it gets harder and harder to come out into the cold and unknown the longer we stay.

There are obvious obstacles when one moves abroad; language, time differences, food, people. These are things that, while they may never be mastered or completely feel like home, are adaptable and after some time become not so foreign. But for me it is always forcing me to change the way I live. I had to consciously make the effort or create opportunities to meet people, practice my language, and see new places that seemed to come easier when I was living in the US. Why do I live the way I live? I’ll probably keep asking some variation of that question to myself until my dying day, but my goal will always be to try and bridge that gap between how I do live and how I want to live.

What is freedom? Why do I live the way I live?–Sarah Michaels

Here’s what Sarah Michaels, a fellow Human Being,  has to say about this week’s questions.

After you read, join the conversation! You can find the first questions here and then send your responses in to: thetimehascome.bethechange@gmail.com. They will be posted here unedited. Just be yourself, speak your mind and don’t be afraid. Not sure how to answer the question, then maybe let us know what the word “freedom” makes you think of, or how you express it in your daily life, at work, at school, with your friends, with your family. There is not one answer to these questions, but that’s the point.

Here’s Sarah:

*Oh to be free. Isn’t that something? To be free means to be whatever you feel at that moment. Feel it and be comfortable and at ease with whatever situation you may be in. Freedom should have no limits, no boundaries, no one to tell you x, y, z because of a, b, c. Freedom is to have choice, preferably choices. As a being, I feel that there is not much that I am afraid of. Fear is a silly thing. But, you bet your ass I am afraid of losing my freedom. But who is the one who can take it away? Can anyone take it away? … Also, should we discuss the difference between freedom and liberty… shewww

*Why do I live the way I live? Because I realize that I do not want what the average human in this society seems to yearn for. I worked for just barely a year at my first “professional” job with my degree. Great job, great people. But was it what I wanted to do for the rest of my life? Hell no. An opportunity arose to travel over seas to live and work and learn, why wouldn’t I seize that? I am living simply, but so wonderfully. To have less is really to have more. I would rather have more knowledge and more in my soul than possessions and a large bank account. We are all human and all so very alike, but most tend to think that we are different from one another. We need to get back to the basics of human(kind). I love being in new situations and learning things that one cannot learn in a classroom. Eventually I want to further my education and obtain a masters degree, but I am happy that I have not pursued that yet because I do not know what I want to study. There is so much to see and learn. I am also hesitant because of the price tag that comes along with a degree (a bit terrible that $ can deter one from gaining an eduction). But maybe school isn’t for me? I am trying to figure that out. Humans and the way we function as a whole are so interesting, most of the time I keep quiet and observe what is going on around me. Society is wild. But being wild is in our nature, eh? Hmmm

…I live the way I live because I feel that is the right thing, for me, to do. I aim to learn as much as I can from the man who drives my moto concho to the doctor sitting next to me on my flight. It is a big world and there is so much to learn. It makes me feel all giddy inside when I think about it, a sense of wonder. That is why I live the way I live.  …Stay with the group or find the answers. Live heavy, travel light. Knowledge is power…

Introduction to Voices

This blog is all about asking questions. Each week or two weeks we will distribute a simple question that asks us to think a little deeper about our lives. This will allow us to begin to see how much we can benefit from communication and how many of us are already fighting for the same thing. This weeks questions are:

  • What does it mean to be free?
  • Why do I live the way I live?

Please send responses and reflections to thetimehascome.bethechange@gmail.com com or comment directly on this blog.

Find the voices blog here.

Why is buying a pair of shoes so difficult?

One of the things I find most frustrating about modern life is the sensation of hopelessness that sometimes it produces. The other day I went to a local shopping center to purchase a pair of shoes. A totally normal event in which I didn’t really expect much to occur. It’s a simple, every-day process: enter the store, find something I like and then purchase it. However, when I was perusing the selection I realized that really, one of the most important factors in making this decision was going to be price. In other words, I would be making a decsion that was very much a balance between what I might want and how much it was going to cost me. We can disagree on it being the most important part, but we rarely buy the cheapest or the most expensive option. How much it costs is vital to our decision.

Whether you are rich or poor, working or unemployed, or somewhere in between, we tend to live by a common ideal, which is to try to live within our means. Most of the time I do this successfully and I am comfortable enough with myself to be able to make the necessary sacrifices to do so in a pleasurable and meaningful way. I permit spoiling myself, but I also know there is a limit and this affects the choice that I make. However, I can’t help but look at the paradox that exists when I go to buy a simple pair of athletic shoes. The price differences are drastic. One can buy a pair of shoes for $200 and it will include all the latest technological advances a shoe can have and will be equipped with fancy cushioning and new-age laces that don’t dirty. One can also buy a remarkably similar shoe for $30. This shoe maybe doesn’t have the fancy gizmos as the other shoe and maybe the material is a bit cheaper and the design a bit outdated, all of which could cause it to break down sooner than the other shoe, but for all intents and purposes these two products are exactly the same thing.

Part of the issue that I take with this simple, commercial activity is that I know who makes my shoes. The underdeveloped world is exploited and paid almost nothing for the shoes that I wear, and then, somehow, it reaches me and is sold for an exorbitant price that I can barely afford. As I sit there and compare the two shoes I think to myself that maybe the more expensive shoe is the way that it is because the company pays those who make it more money, but I am not naïve enough to really think this is the case. So, then, why does it cost so much more money? Where does it go?

I’m told that if you make more than $50,000 a year, you are within the top 1 percent of the world’s income bracket. But, if you make $50,000 a year in the US with a family and normal expenses, one would probably not feel the effects of being in this exclusive wealth category. This person would probably go to the shoe store and purchase the $30 shoe instead of the $200 one because that is what their budget dictates. This is one of the most frustrating things to me about modern, developed life. We feel as though we don’t have enough. Compared to the rest of the world we are cloaked in money. What seems like a run-down, lower class home would be a thing of august luxury to a large percentage of the world’s population, yet we complain of difficult lives and of not having enough because the reality of the situation is that we do not.

So, despite all this money, it is no wonder that when people ask for donations for a local charity or when someone approaches you on the street needing $.50 you almost always turn a blind eye and excuse yourself from any guilt because your current situation really does not allow you to be able to make this sacrifice. But, herein lies the crux of the issue. What constitutes a sacrifice? We won’t make a donation to a local charity because we can’t spare the $25 or $50 that we need to spare, but then we spend that money on a nice dinner with friends or we put it into our savings account for a house or a vacation and we consider that money better spent. But why? Why is that money better spent?

Because we see what happens to it.

If I asked you for $20 to help feed a child, you gave me the $20 and then you saw me go to the supermarket, purchase food and then hand it to the child, would you deny me those $20? Would you watch the child go hungry? Of course not, or at least any decent human worth dealing with would not.

These examples are dramatic. Saying “the starving children in Africa would eat that” whilst tossing your food scraps into the garbage has been overused to the point where it has become a joke, or a token thing to say to try and make light of the needless waste you are generating. However, I do think this represents a larger, deeper problem with modern human society that will be very difficult to overcome.

The topic of social programs and “access to all” are becoming more and more popular in today’s discussions, especially as elections sweep the country and force people to take ideological sides against one another. But I don’t think people really understand what it would take to build a society with true equality. To have true equality, we must first decide what it is that we want everyone to have. Is it food? a family? an education? a job? Some of these things can be guaranteed, and some of them cannot. And if we agree that we want everyone to have food, shelter and access to health care, what about the countless people that have long since dismissed these needs as foregone conclusions that need not be worried about.

We like to tie the words equality and opportunity and try to imagine a world where the playing field is level and the differences only occur because of direct consequences of your actions. Having children make our shoes doesn’t matter because the money they make is “good money for their situation” and it will lead to future wealth and future opportunity that will eventually help the whole world. This thought process is so flawed I feel like a charlatan simply typing it onto this page

While I demand that shoes be sold at a price that I can afford, and that I have the chance to buy whatever my money can buy, this child’s situation will not change.

We must ask ourselves what it is that we want to give up, and then actually give it up, if we hope to ever see a world with true equality.

– Matthew Jones

Why consumption?

One of the key focuses of this movement is to foster responsible consumption habits in an effort to assert the type of social change we hope to see in this world. This seems like a bit of a reach to many and has been one of the major concerns expressed about this movement. So let’s unpack this connection a little and see if the connection does not become clearer.

It is an old adage that money = power. We can agree on this. Anyone who has been through any generic history class has surely come across the connection between these two aspects of our lives. In a world where there is so much money- we talk about debt levels in the trillions, corporate profits in the billions and athlete and CEO salaries in the millions, it would make sense for us to have an idea as to where this money is so we could see the type of power it has over our lives.

What do we know?

Let’s take a look at a little data from the US and from other countries to see if we can’t get an idea as to where the money is.

This first graph is showing consumer spending (consumption) as a percent of income in the US. This is an average, so some are lower and some are higher, but it is meant to be a representation of the norm.

consumption-graph

Source: http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/NE.CON.PETC.ZS?locations=US&name_desc=false

This graph might be a bit misleading, it appears to show a massive increase, but really since 1970 there has been an increase in consumer spending from around 60 percent to about 68 percent. Okay, what does this mean? We’re not sure, right? After all, consumer spending includes spending money on things we need such as food, water, clothes, etc. Maybe this is just how much life costs and that’s it. Well, let’s dig a little deeper and see if we can unpack this a little more.

Where’s the rest?

Tracking tax rates can be somewhat difficult, especially in the US, because they are not applied evenly across society. In most countries, the richer you are, the more you pay and the poorer you are, the less you pay. This might seem a good argument for the idea of wealth distribution, which is supposedly one of the main features of the modern state. But we all know that this doesn’t seem to work out this way. The rich pay less taxes through loopholes and then the poor and middle classes end up shouldering much of the load. Let’s step away from this argument for a moment, though, and take a look at how tax rates and consumption rates link together. For example, let’s look at the most recent data available, 2013. In 2013, as the graph above indicated, consumer spending was around 68 percent of our income. The tax rates in 2013 according to the Tax Foundation were:

federal-tax-data

Source: http://taxfoundation.org/article/us-federal-individual-income-tax-rates-history-1913-2013-nominal-and-inflation-adjusted-brackets

So let’s break this down. Imagine you are a single person working a decent job making $60,000 a year. According to the data we have looked at, you would consume 68 percent of your income and then pay 25 percent of your income to taxes. This leaves you with:

100%-68%-25%=7% of your income.

To translate, that 7 percent of your original $60,000 is $4,200. This corresponds somewhat to the savings rate, which has hovered around 5 percent in the past 10 or 15 years but is way down from 10 percent before the 1980s.

So what does this mean?

It means that in 2013, 93% of your income, what you worked so hard to acquire, was already accounted for. Between your basic needs, leisure, school, life in general and your taxes, you are left with very little money.

Since we mentioned earlier the old adage, money=power, we could easily say that after all of this we are left with very little power.

Our system is set up so that we consume. Everything we do, from our social interactions, our meals, our education systems and our identities, is based on the things we buy and how we buy them. We have all experienced this. We decorate and set up our homes in such a way so that when people enter they will have an idea of who we are. This is done by the things we buy. We identify with certain products, purchase them and then allow others to perceive us based on the identities that come with these products. The same thing could be said for clothes. We all know that we have others’ thoughts and perceptions in mind when we buy a new shirt, pants or a hat. It is not just a shirt we are buying, but an identity.

When the economy was bad in 2008 and onward, people got scared and the savings rate shot up to 10%, meaning people were consuming less, but the government did everything it could to make sure consumption returned to normal levels. It used tax dollars on bank bailouts, it started drilling for more oil in places we know damages the environment and it continued a trend of tax policies favoring the rich and corporations so that they could do all that was necessary to boost consumption.

Someone reading this could easily say that that 68% spent on consumption is done through personal choice. They could say that that money is spent on things that bring joy and pleasure to your life. Think, dinners with friends, Christmas gifts, clothes, etc. These things are supposed to allow us to express ourselves and to show to the world who we are. The first question to ask are: Is this successful? Do you feel as though your identity is properly reflected through these things that you buy? And another important question is: Is it fair to ask people to spend 68 percent of their lives (after all we know our jobs play a huge role in defining who we are) attempting to define themselves with things that we know do not do so sufficiently?

What about countries that consume less?

One could make the argument that much of this that is being said is about the United States, a country known for its over-the-top consumption. This is true, but if we look at the data from other countries we see similar patterns. For example, consumption in Denmark is around 55 percent (World Bank), but tax rates in Denmark reach almost 50 percent. Again, all of the money, all of the power, is accounted for. Poorer countries in South Asia, Latin America and Africa have seen consumption go down. This is much harder to account for. The obvious answer is exploitation. As our lives in the Western, developed world are designed for us to constantly consume more at a lower price, exploitation is at an all-time high. Why are there still 700 million people living in this world with less than $1.90 per day? (also a World Bank figure that can be found here.) So consumption is low in these societies and is dropping because at this moment in history they are not the consumers, they are the producers. The idea behind modern day economic development is to eventually turn these cultures into consumers who will then be asked to place the same constraints on freedom and the human spirit that those of us in the Western world already have. Is this the vision of the world that we have? Is that what we want the world to turn into?

So what can we do?

Unfortunately, we cannot stop paying taxes. Millions depend on this money and if you do not, you will end up in jail. (another shocking concept that is best left for another day). So the only thing we can do is take control of the other aspect of our lives that has so much control over us: our consumption. This starts with one thing: take control of where our food comes from. We depend so much on what already exists because at the end of the day we need to eat, but we are not strangers to the idea that we have no idea where our food comes from. The first step is to begin reducing our consumption needs down to only what we need and then taking control over where that comes from. To do this we can:

  • Buy local products produced by PEOPLE, not corporations. We all know there are farmers markets, local food stores, agricultural cooperatives, etc. USE THEM. Don’t know how? A quick Google search of these types of initiatives in your area will surely help us find out how to make this change in our lives.
  • Share food. Why must each person get their own entrée at a restaurant when the portions are already huge? Why not get two or three between a group of four and share? Use your meal times to converse and enjoy the company. You will eat slower and then get fuller faster and require less. This is not a made up idea, it is a key aspect of many diets that we use to try and lose or control our weight.
  • Grow your food whenever possible. If you have land or a place where you can have a garden, use it! Not everyone can do this, but those who can should and if they produce more than they can consume: share!
  • Pay attention to the seasons. When was the last time you saw a banana growing in Massachusetts or London? The access to these goods, which are above all else luxury goods, has been part of this idea of non-stop growth and consumption that is limiting us in so many ways. If you buy local, you will only be able to buy what can be produced in the season. This transition will take time, some climates do not permit big yields in the winter, and will require some personal sacrifices, but with planning, we can eventually make this happen, but it can start now.
  • Avoid things like organic, bio, all-natural. This may seem counterproductive, but there has been much work done on how effective these labels are. If the product was produced outside of where you are living, the increase in price from these labels is not reflected on those who produce it, but rather on the certification and subsequent labeling of these products.

The list could go on. What are some suggestions that you have? What else can we do?

This seems like a tall task

As we discuss this, we might be thinking about the added expense of buying these types of products and the things we might have to sacrifice in order to do so. Maybe buying local will mean less money for the bars on the weekend, or less money for Christmas presents, or less money for cell phones, televisions, movies, etc. But when we stop for a moment, we know that these things are not necessary. We always complain about the consumerist nature of Christmas, but we also know that the best part of the holiday is being with friends and family. We can say to our families that instead of presents, we want their time. We can say to our friends that instead of going out every weekend for beers, we can meet at our house and talk, laugh, play games, etc. Part of what stops us is fear. We are afraid of what might happen if we start to remove some of the things that we have considered so important. Well, we cannot know until we try. Let’s start by making these sacrifices and seeing what our lives look like. When we see the improvement, we will start to believe it, and those around us will start to as well.

We also need to engage the people around us, especially the people we love. We are not alone, although sometimes it seems that way. The questions we ask ourselves and the thoughts we have are shared by other people. This is why we can connect with what is said in books, movies, art, etc. We identify with these shared concepts of what it means to be human. In other words, we are communicating. As we start to make these changes in our lives, we must explain them to the people in our lives so they understand us and will support us. We need to work together.

We also need to stop staying quiet. When you tell someone that you are only buying local, reducing your consumption or trying to pay more attention to what you eat and consume, it is not unlikely that someone will react to you negatively, as if you were better than them. Think about how our society views vegans and vegetarians. Think about what might happen when you go to a burger bar and order a salad. This commercial epitomizes this attitude:

These types of social interactions would be erased if we understood each other better—if others knew our motivations. So, as people start to question us as we make these changes, explain to them why you are doing so and it is not such a grand leap to say that they will come around to understand and accept your choices.

It may seem like a tall task that we are setting out to accomplish, but the difficult things are the best things. We are working for a better world, and if we are willing to accept that that is not worth it because it is too hard, that presents a rather disappointing view of the future that we cannot accept.

Action plan

The first step in this movement is to raise awareness. We must adapt these changes and then work to share our experiences with others. This is one of the main goals of this website. To share our experiences so that we can realize we are not alone. To do this we must:

  • Examine where we can adjust our consumption habits
  • Adjust them
  • Stick to them
  • Explain to others why we are doing it
  • Help each other deal with the difficulties that might arise and with the carrying out of these changes.

Please spread the word, contribute to the blog, and talk to your friends and family. The movement begins now and it begins with us.

Stay free.

Hiding in plain sight: the consequences of our modern lives

We live in a very odd period of human history. We call it the “modern age.” Modern as defined by Merrian Webster refers to something “of or relating to the present time or the recent past: happening, existing, or developing at a time near the present time” A perfectly absurd definition for a perfectly absurd time in history. By this definition, the Stone Age was once the Modern Age, as was the Jurassic Age, the Bronze Age, the pre-Industrial age and whatever other age you want to think of.

These ages, once they stopped being referred to as the Modern Age, received their name based on how we, looking retrospectively, defined them. Human nature was transitioned radically through the use of bronze, hence the Bronze Age. So I wonder, how will today’s modern age come to be defined by future generations? I think I have an answer: the Domination Age.

I am aware of the conspiracy theory nature of this statement, but let me explain to you how your very immediacy to dismiss it as hogwash is the exact reason why this period in time has earned this definition.

Let me start by explaining that we are not free. What is freedom? To me, it should be to do whatever we we want whenever we want. It means to be able to explore ourselves and understand ourselves as human beings without limits and without prescribed definitions of identity. Critics of this idea will say that we must limit ourselves so that we do not do harm to ourselves. This is ludicrous. A human being is not naturally evil, it only lashes out with violence when it is deprived of what it needs, which has been a common thread in our societies since we started forming them thousands of years ago. The idea that humans are evil, that we need to be governed is nothing more than a theory tossed around by the likes of Thomas Hobbes hundreds years ago to try and explain the nature of a world that seemed so prepared to kill itself. If we all have what we need, we don’t fight. The problem is we do not believe we have what we need. Somewhere along the line, our range of human needs became infinite, and since they can never be met, we can never be equal and we will always fight.

How is this system of constant domination and infinite want maintained? I give you one word: FREEDOM. This word has been transformed from something so pure, so human and so natural to something so limited. True freedom goes against what we have today. Today we bicker over tax rates, job opportunities, rents, mortgages, abortion, immigration, voting…the list is endless, but if we were truly free, none of this would be a problem. Instead freedom has been warped, and it has been warped in the most maniacal way. Those that rule the world in the name of power and profits do so because the system they have created benefits them most. Those it marginalizes have no faith in it and do not participate. But what have they done with the middle? Oh this is where it gets good. They have given the middle just enough to think the system is helping us, they have given us just enough so that we believe working within it is the way to fix it, just enough to stay content. But, at the same time, we are not free. I cannot just not pay my taxes, I cannot just not have money, I cannot just be. You may be reading this and thinking I am extreme, that I am radical, but I know deep down you have had these thoughts, that these ideas are not new to you. I know because you are a human being and so am I.

When you stop to think about what it is we actually do in our lives, what it is that we actually live for, it all becomes so obvious. It’s all right there in front of us. In fact, they mock us with it. Governments publish reports about what they do, they hold public hearings, they operate in plain sight. But this is the genius of it. By doing this, we assume all is well. We don’t question and therefore everything stays the same.

Much talk is thrown around about bringing about change in this world. This world is always the same, what changes is the people inside of it. And if we are all conditioned to be the same, then when will change ever come? It’s time to wake up and realize we are the controllers of our own destiny, we own ourselves and our future. If we do not, the Modern Age will never be known as the Domination Age, because it will never close, allowing dwellers of future ages to name it.