In August, 1963, Martin Luther King delivered “I have a dream” to the people of the world. That day, if you were alive, must have seemed like the sun had finally decided to shine.
On the 13th January this year, Subcommander Marcos of Mexico, delivered a speech, which I believe, once people read it, will become just as important.
I’ve just finished reading it. I didn’t even know about until a friend asked everyone to search for an english version (which was uploaded only 6 hours ago).
Those from above speak:
“We are the ones that give orders. We are more powerful, even though we are fewer. We do not care what you say-hear-think or do, so long as you are mute, deaf, immobile.
“We can impose as a government fairly intelligent people (although it is very difficult to find them in the world of politics), but we chose one that cannot even pretend to know what the issue is.
“Why? Because we can.
“We may use the military and police apparatus to prosecute and incarcerate real criminals, but these criminals are our vital part. Instead, we choose to pursue you, hit you, detain you, torture you, imprison you, kill you.
“Why? Because we can.
“Innocent or guilty? Who cares if you’re one or the other? Justice is a whore in our address book and, believe us, it isn’t the most expensive.
“And even though you may fulfill to the letter the mold we impose, even though you may have done nothing, even if you are innocent, we crush you.
“And if you insist on asking why we do it, we answer: because we can.
“That is what it means to have Power. Money, wealth, and things are talked about a lot. But we believe that what is exciting is this feeling of being able to decide about the life, liberty and property of anyone. No, money is not power; it is what you can have with it. Power is not only exercised with impunity; also, and above all, it is used irrationally. Because having Power is to do and undo with no more reason than the possession of Power.
“And it doesn’t matter who appears in front, hiding us. Those of the right and left are only references for the chauffeur to park the car. The machine works by itself. We do not even have to order them to punish the insolence of defying us. Governments large, medium and small, across the political spectrum, as well as intellectuals, artists, journalists, politicians, religious leaders, vie for the privilege of pleasing us.
“So fuck you, fuck you, fuck you, die, disappoint yourselves, surrender.
“For the rest of the world you don’t exist, you’re nobody.
“Yes, we have sown hatred, cynicism, bitterness, hopelessness, theoretical and practical cynicism, conformity to “the lesser evil”, fear made into resignation.
“And yet, we fear that this will become transformed into organized rage, rebellion without price.
“Because the chaos that we impose we control; we manage it, we dispense it in doses, we feed it. Our ‘forces of order’ are forces to impose our chaos.
“But the chaos that comes from below …
“Oh, that … we do not even understand what they say, who they are, how much they cost.
“And then they are so rude as to no longer beg, expect, ask, plead, but to exercise their freedom. Have you ever seen so great an obscenity!
“That’s the real danger. People who look for another way, that is outside the mold, or who break it, or ignore it.
“Don’t you know that this has given us very good results? That myth of unity at all costs. To agree only with the boss, the director, leader, the strongman, or whatever they are called. To monitor, manage, contain, buy someone is easier than many other ways. Yes, and cheaper. That and the individual rebellions. They are so touchingly useless.
“Instead, what is definitely dangerous, true chaos, is that everyone becomes a collective, a group, a band, a race, an organization, and learn to say ‘no’ and say ‘yes’, and agree among themselves. Because the ‘no’ defines those whom we order. And yes … ugh … now that’s a calamity. Imagine that each person builds his own destiny and decides what to be and do. It would be equivalent to pointing out that we are the expendable ones, that we are superfluous, that we are in the way, that we are not necessary, that we should be imprisoned, that we should disappear.
“Yes, a nightmare. Clearly, but now for us. Can you imagine what bad taste there would be in this world? Full of Indians, blacks, browns, yellows, reds, with dreadlocks, tattoos, piercings, studs; punks, nuts, skaters; the A [anarchist] flag of a nation that can’t be bought; of youth, women, whores, children, old people, pimps, chauffeurs, peasants, workers, commoners, riff-raff, the poor, the anonymous, of … of others. Without a special place for us, ‘the beautiful people’ … ‘the good people’. Just so that you understand us …. because you stand out for not having studied at Harvard.
“Yes, that day would be night for us … Yes, everything would burst. What would we do?
“Hmm … we hadn’t thought of that. We think, we plan and execute what to do to prevent it from happening, but … no, it hadn’t occurred to us.
“Well, in this case, because … um … I do not know … maybe we can look for culprits and then, because look, I dunno, a plan B. Of course, by then everything would be useless. I think then we would remember the words of that damned red Jew … no, not Marx … Einstein, Albert Einstein. I think it was he who said: ‘Theory is when we know everything and nothing works. Practice is when everything works and nobody knows why. In this case we combine theory and practice: nothing works … and nobody knows why.’
“No, you’re right, neither will we even be able to smile. A sense of humor has always been an asset that can’t be expropriated. Isn’t that a shame?
“Yes, no doubt: these are times of crisis.
“Hey, aren’t you going to take pictures? I mean, to fix us up a bit and make us a little more decent. Nah, we already used that outfit for another show. Ah, but how can we count on you when it is clear that you haven’t gotten past cowboy books.
“Ah, we can’t wait to tell our friends that so and so came to interview us. They’ll love it. And, well, it’s going to give us a cosmopolitan air …
“No, it’s clear, we don’t fear you. As for that prophecy … bah, it’s just superstition, so … so … so native … Yes, so of the south … hahaha … what a good joke, we’ll tell the girls when we see them.
“What? … Is not a prophecy? …
“Oh, it’s a promise …
(…) (The ‘titutata-tatatata’ sound of a SmartPhone)
“Hello, police? Yes, I want to report that someone came to see us. Yes, we thought it was a journalist or something. He looked so … so … so other, yes. No, he did nothing. No, he didn’t take anything. Just that now as we left for the club to see our friends, we see that they have painted something on the entrance gate to the garden. No, the guards didn’t notice who. Of course not, ghosts don’t exist. Well, it’s painted with many colors and … No, we didn’t see any paint can close by … Well, we said that it is painted with many colors, very colorful, very Indian, quite different, nothing like anything in the galleries where … what? No, we don’t want you to send any patrols. Yes, we know. But we called to see if you can figure out what the painting means. We don’t know if it’s a key, or one of those strange languages spoken by the common folk. Yes, it’s a word, but we don’t know why it gives us the shivers. It says:
[MV Note: A word of the Mapuche of Chile meaning “one hundred times we will win”, which is chanted vigorously in support and solidarity.]
(To be continued …)
From whatever corner, in whatever world.