Empire As A Way Of Life – Economic Exploitation/Expansion, Ecological Destruction, Oligarchic Governance, Built on Genocides With Impunity. The primary meme of US culture is: Profits for a few (mostly men/patriarchy) through expansion at ANY cost = empire.
Our national origins derive from forceful dispossession of others with total impunity (genocide #1) justified through a myth of exceptionalism, setting in motion a pattern of a Pretend society, built on lie after lie, from Manifest Destiny to Full Spectrum Dominance. The past is never in the past, as its features always remain present in the psyche.
Long patterns of plundering without accountability lead to delusions of grandeur and obsessive narcissism. As a species we are now on the eve of a very painful era of accountability (correction) after millenniums of grotesque entitlement. The question is whether we can access our deeper ancient archetypes of cooperation, mutual respect, local community, and fairness and experience an evolutionary, radical shift (healing) from an epistemology rooted in separation from and domination over nature, to one of integration with and embracing nature. Our survival is dependent upon practicing a turn toward a local, bioregional cooperative food and simple tool economy. Thus, we become part of our own and the earth’s healing even while the inevitable correction mechanisms of the Gaia become evermore apparent as inevitable collapse of industrial civilization speeds up.
S. Brian Willson is a Viet Nam veteran, trained lawyer and long time activist advocating for domestic and global justice. He has been a tax refuser since 1984. He is the author of “On Third World Legs” (Chicago: Charles Kerr, 1992); “Blood On The Tracks: The Life and Times of S. Brian Willson” (Oakland: PM Press, 2011). His essays can be found at brianwillson.com
This talk was given at the Fellowship of Reconciliation annual conference at Seabeck, WA, July 3, 2015