Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Anarchist in High-Viz clothing

In the process of writing, there always comes a time when the words flow independently of conscious thought - a kind of unfettered motion, if you will... as an automobile coasting towards its destination in neutral on a downward incline, smoothly and steadily realising the fruit of all the combustion and smoke and toil that came before, with the idea of its ultimate purpose now dawning at last.

If only the inexorable path of life could be similarly revealed.

Hardship and effort during the course of daily living become virtues only if they provide a clear mental image of the journey's end - with milk and honey and, hopefully, a comfortable armchair with a footrest and a good book waiting at the finish line. As an end in itself there can be nothing virtuous about menial labour - the passage of hours and hours occupied by singularly uninspired regret in one's own horrid company. I make the distinction, here, between solitude - a pleasant voluntary interlude where one indulges the illusion that he/she is bon vivant and engaged in a bacchanal debate with a rabidly fertile brain... and the act of actually engaging in being practically productive all alone, with hours measured against set targets that are remunerated for, depending on prevailing monetary norms and the economic demand for said labour.

And what of the journey's end, you ask... At a bare minimum, driving human beings to desperate exhaustion in the hope of an existence unmarked by a feral dependence on institutions and/or benevolent relatives is a system that can only ever survive in an unexamined and immoral world, a world that is fast being overtaken by calumnious denial about the cost of our collective efforts at providing all or most of us the means to fulfill that dream of a future independent leisure. The forests are fading, the seas are sweltering, the skies are scorching, the water is waning. Towards what end is this system driving itself? Is it actually possible that we covet our comforts, earned over generations and generations of deprivation, so much that we now contemplate our own devouring by the very processes we put in place to emancipate ourselves from the struggle for daily survival.

In an unexamined world the anarchists always die last.