I, with my years and years of academic training know that I sound like a freaking Stalinist (and probably fascist depending on how you look at it) with, “my way or the highway” sentiments, but there is a little gnome inside of me jumping up and down, holding its breath and hoping that all of its effort will change people’s ways. The pragmatic, realistic side of me knows that’s no way to create a revolution, but that little gnome keeps jumping and not breathing and hoping just the same. So what’s a 21st century revolutionary to do?
I should preface all of this with a few qualifying notes. First of all, I really want a job in the food revolution and don’t yet have one. So it’s safe to say that that frustration is definitely fueling that little gnome’s gymnastics more than anything. Secondly, I just watched an Italian movie last night about two brothers growing up in the 1960s and how they each handled the political furor of that time. Of course one brother was a leftist radical whose political activities eventually force him underground as a fugitive from the law. The other brother starts out as a Fascist and then comes around to something more closely aligned with his economic interest as he literally watches his home crumble around the ears of his hard working mother and father (Mio Fratello Il Figlio Unico, My Brother the Only Son).
Needless to say all of this rekindled some very dormant revolutionary thoughts and impulses of my own. As I am not shy of reminding people, not only do I share a birthday with Fidel Castro and my birthday horoscope warns of “dictatorial and violent tendencies,” but I was fascinated and slightly infatuated with the leftist violent radicalism of the late 60’s that swept the world (Germany, Italy, Japan, Czechoslovakia, France, the U.S.). While W’s Operation Freedom and the Iraqi War have turned me into a fierce pacifist, I still burn with the fear that one day American life as we know it – politically, economically, and socially – will implode on itself. I hope when that happens that I’m living on a farm by then and can provide a refuge for all of my friends who are fleeing the barrenness that will be the vast majority of the U.S.
So where does this all leave me? Clearly, I’m sure some of you are thinking, she needs to get out more, exercise, enjoy life! True that my friend. But it also makes me wonder, how many times will “bubbles” happen before we realize that this system of bubbles and bursts doesn’t really seem to be working well? It works ok until we bandage it or let it subside – in the case of housing, financial markets, industry booms. But what about things that don’t go away or subside, like climate change?