By Evan Feeley
It is a hard truth that I am a slave. A truth I’ve been wrapping my mind around for the past year and half. Not just in a, “oh yeah yeah, we’re all slaves,” eye roll followed by a disbelieving snort into nothingness and blank thoughts blotting out any true revelation of my own servitude. I guess that’s how it started though. Just saying it out loud is a step toward awareness of my slavery and therefore all of our slavery. Awareness turns to anger, and thank god for anger. Thank god for any reaction that is not a blank helpless stare into the void of existence where the work of unslaving myself cannot be done. Anger is a necessary step toward action, which is a necessary step toward change.
But let me backup. A year and a half ago Bernie Sanders started running for president. He put the establishment on blast. He told us peasants we needed to breakup the big banks, pointed out that politicians are sponsored by corporations to do their bidding. He spoke about the revolving door of the prison industrial complex, and the dangers of the military industrial complex. Most of all though he connected us all and gave us a real sense of hope and told us to do what the Oligarchy most fears that we do, come together.
I knew all that, deep down, but this man was saying it on TV and people were listening. A tide of awareness of this mess we’re in started crashing and it started to feel real. I suddenly became very aware that I wasn’t the only one watching the world burn but there there was a gathering crowd and we were all watching it together, wondering what to do.
I started doing research to educate myself in specific terms to better argue with those clinging to the idea that the News was news, and not manufactured truths to keep us slaves confused and isolated. The motives of the narratives that the mainstream media fed us about how the Black Americans being killed by cops were criminals, that Syrian refugees fleeing their country torn apart by our wars were potential terrorists all became very transparent. Zika, ISIS, Mass shootings, War on Cops, War on Christmas, War on Terror, War on Drugs. All reactionary headlines with no substance, nothing to explain how we’ve gotten here, just that we are here and should be afraid.
I couldn’t just sit in my fear. I needed answers. I watched the easily accessible Hollywood movie “The Big Short” about how our banking system manufactured the 2008 real estate crash and realized that’s why my Mother was forced to sell our childhood home and lost her half of her retirement fund in the process forcing a family of three to become transient unconnected “renters” in already difficult economy. I understood what Bernie meant when he said “it’s very expensive to be poor.”
I watched the Sony Pictures documentary “Inside Job” that asked powerful Wall Street men questions that made them squirm and stumble as attempted to tow some invisible line I could now make out. I watched “Ethos; how to unslave humanity” narrated by Woody Harrelson, that talked about the Federal Reserve system of manufactured debt. It explains that all money in circulation is borrowed at interest and printed from nothing by the Federal Reserve, a private, not public bank. These are the people we one day must pay our National Deficit to. But in order to pay that debt, which is constantly accruing interest, more money must be printed because there simply are not enough dollars in circulation to pay it. Any dollars that are printed to pay off this debt are borrowed at interest which only add to our debt creating a never ending cycle of debt for the American people.
Even if we make money from other countries to pay off this debt, we are only furthering the people of those countries debt who are also at the mercy of fractional banking. A system of banking that allows Banks to create money out of nothing indefinitely so long as they have ten percent of the created money in reserve. The “Zeitgeist” series explains all this very simply as well.
I started thinking about my own Student Loans. This mortgaging of our futures in order to have futures that we American teenagers decide to do is indentured servitude. I owe about $30,000, which isn’t bad compared to some people. I’m on a ten year payment plan, and I pay four hundred dollars a month. That plus rent and food basically assures that I must plug myself into the cog of this societal machine in some fashion in order to be productive. It’s not much of a choice really. Either I get a job and pay these people back or my credit score plummets, which makes it impossible to buy a house, or even rent a house and a good job in many cases. I have to find a way to pay these people back.
Even if I decided to drop out of society and live off the grid; it’d have to be on someone else’s land because I can’t get a loan to buy my own. Doing that would alienate me from human beings at large, which seems unnatural for a social creature to be so isolated. So I am forced to be part of the Babylonian money magic machine, which I may catch up with in terms of my own personal debt (student loans, small consumer debt, and a mortgage one day), but we as a country will never catch up on the debt we owe to the Federal Reserve. Like Puerto Rico, the numbers are just too high, the interest accrues too quickly, and in order to print the requisite amount of money necessary to actually pay off the debt would require borrowing more dollars and accruing more debt.
This is not even checkmate. This is stalemate. We are being held hostage by the status quo. To not pay the debt would be to default on our loans and lose all financial and economic credibility, which would force a depression. Since we can never hope to pay back our National Deficit, all we can hope to do is keep paying the interest and keep this thing, this economy, this illusion of American freedom going by continuing our enslavement.
Being forced to be productive for productivity’s sake, for the sake of some unknown people at the top of this massive pyramid scheme that has drafted all of us and all of our children’s children into without our knowledge or consent. Sure we are being given money and many options on how and where to spend that money, but if we want to live a life free from harassment by the tip of their sword which is the police, and among others of our species, we must submit to wage slavery. Even owning a small business forces most into debt and only just puts you one step higher in the scheme
I can’t accept these conditions. I don’t think that by being alive I have implicitly signed this social contract that would have me “work hard, and play hard” while funneling all my time up to the top of this succubus society until I die. I am forever grateful that Bernie kicked me and many others in the ass. But with him effectively out of the race due to Hillary’s cheating, it is proven even more that the people of America, indeed the world, have no say whatsoever in our organizational fate. We have two Oligarchs in Clinton and Trump who’ve both made their fortunes in New York City, the seat of this empire.
That doesn’t feel like a choice at all. Bernie’s candidacy, coupled with the Wikileaks and how us young folks spread the news on the internet via social media, has woken us up. We are at least aware of the contempt that the Oligarchy held Our representative in, by deigning to speak the concerns of the wage slaves to their Oligarchical masters. We are at least aware of how threatened these Oligarchs are by spreading the knowledge of what they are doing to us. And with these wikileaks proving the DNC colluded with Hillary’s campaign, we are aware that our control of this country is truly an illusion.
The media, the propaganda sources will drill into our heads as they always have done that the lying and cheating never happened, or if it did that it didn’t make a difference anyway. The continued control of our thought process and what we are willing to accept will be defined by how much we simply don’t want to look at the hard truths we are faced with here in this “Land of the Free.” But at this point, in this age of information, it really is a choice.
Do you want to believe that there’s nothing behind the curtain, even though you’ve seen what’s behind the curtain? Or do you want to start dealing with this massive infrastructure of lies, this manufactured reality? This election is one example of seeing behind the curtain. The crash in 2008 was one example of seeing behind the curtain. Every video of a Black American being murdered by a police officer is seeing behind the curtain. Every time you are aware that a victim of rape or war is being blamed for the crimes perpetrated against them, you are seeing behind the curtain. But how many glimpses behind the curtain does it take to wake up to the reality of our collective enslavement?
Realizing my own enslavement and that of my country is hard to stomach. But it is only through the realization of my illusion of freedom that I can ever begin the work of actually becoming free. It’s hard to even know if it’s possible for me to ever truly be free within this monetary consumer society that pits us all against each other and celebrates the destruction. For now I keep peeling back the layers that have been heaped on my soul since birth to keep me under control and I find solace in the fact that there are millions doing the exact same thing.
Evan Feeley has been a traveler who is now putting down roots, and not just metaphorically. When he's not writing he's practicing yoga and the martial arts, growing medical marijuana, surfing, and just generally being a self deprecating cliche. He received his B.A. in Creative Writing and Spanish from Knox College. He is pretty damn cool all the way around and a total zenruptor.