Tod | 31.07.2002 17:26
Independent media and the deceivable majority
I began my independent media, InterNation, with big ambitions. Not only would this magazine function as a portal to the best journals in the world, but it would expand such that it would cover the news in the hot spots of the world, live via satellite, through the Internet.
The common theme? Using raw commentary before slick journalism. We would move beyond the BS- filtered mainstream media for public consumption. InterNation would ultimately represent more than smart news, but would help to instigate an intelligent revolution; a tool to effect news that is untainted by larger media interests. WHEREAS THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA IS INTEGRATED INTO THE LARGER SYSTEM, INTERNATION WOULD EXIST AS AN IMPORTANT TOOL FOR LIMITING CONCENTRATION OF POLITICAL POWER.
I hired on help. Many more people visited InterNation than anticipate. Emails came through from throughout the world, encouraging our cause. In the meantime, the 'local' political realities became quite real beyond the virtual theorizing on InterNation.
This was instructive. I learned that my workplace, and my relationships are a microcosm of the larger politik among nations. My immediate political conflict came from below my balcony. The owner of the restaurant, the main stay of the Taylor Arcade, believed he had other uses for my space, but I was confident: I would pay my rent, and ignore the bully, the unilateral power play of the Super Power.
In terms of their security, the restaurant brings the merchants their customers, and people accept whatever comes of this alliance, good or bad. I did not agree with the ways of the restaurant owner, nor could I pander to the majority. Soon the conflict at the Taylor Arcade (see article) worsened.
At first the owner of the building encouraged me to remain, saying he appreciated my presence. I wondered, Did he think I helped to achieve a balance of power? Did not my offices add culture to a splendid old arcade (a former movie theater), that had now come to resemble a flea market? During the last few months, as I let my staff go one by one (most of these, living elsewhere), I worked 14 hour days promoting InterNation. Yet after six months, all of $15.00 had come in for the cause.
I have given the owner notice, that I'm leaving. I ate breakfast at Nick's place. And someone asked, Why would you eat at the restaurant, and support the very people who wanted you out?
A very good question. I never harbored ill-will toward the people who resented me, or my work. I wished the others success in their work. Further, from the perspective of political realism, I believed that if I met the people halfway, through compromise, we could come to a truce. One day I asked the landlord, why, after my attempts to make peace with the people of the Taylor Arcade, had no one reciprocated. "You must understand," he said, "you are only one. You want to get along with everyone, then, you've got to become just like they are."
Today, as I gave notice to the landlord that I am leaving, I went ahead and did extra work around the building to show my respect for him. In turn? He said, "If the people all want you out, it is something you've done, not they." I agreed with him, but said that simply because the majority gangs up on someone different, this does not necessarily mean that the majority is right. When the majority becomes a bunch of pathetic, bleating sheep, what then?
Today, as I gave notice to the landlord that I am leaving, I went ahead and did extra work around the building to show my respect for him. In turn? He said, "If the people all want you out, it is something you've done, not they."
I agreed with him - this is the way of majorities - and I added, "Simply because everyone gangs up on someone who is different, does not necessarily mean that the majority is right." When the majority becomes a bunch of pathetic, bleating sheep, what then?
In turn? He said, "It the people all want you out, it is something you've done, or who you are." I agreed with him, but said that simply because the majority gangs up on someone different, this does not necessarily mean that the majority is right.
The only bottom line the majority in this building honor is the will to resemble the next person, in attitude and, to resent those who stand for something. They know only about control, but I believe that a higher law should govern human relationships, that of love.
The restaurant owner, shaking his head as a friend showed up for breakfast, said, "I don't know about him, up there, that eye in the sky." He said this, peppered in sarcasm, but I took it for a compliment. I have worked for three years on the balcony, overlooking the Arcade; and I have held my peace.
The majority of the merchants continue to enlist support for the bully in the restaurant. They are attracted to him as moths to a light bulb. The phosphorescent light is artificial, hardly sunlight. But from their meager perspective, artificial personalities are secure. No doubt, the situation here at the Taylor Arcade, is little different than the noise one hears out of the US State Department, not to mention the current president. Americans could lose every right, every freedom they have gained, but because they are deceived by their president's personality, it is no matter to them.
Hans Morgenthau, the author of Politics Among Nations, wrote, "It is characteristic of political thinking to personalize social problems." He suggested in his version of political realism that the complexity of the political terrain "precludes such simple solutions." Yet, later he disparages such personalities, i.e. Hitler, Mussolini, and any number of men who, having such power, were elected by majorities. The fact is, those whom people choose to lead them, mirror themselves, their interests.
People do not solve conflicts using logic. Look at the Mideast! Old religious conflicts. superstitions and power agglomerates hold far more sway in politics, than does logic. The truth is, majorities are often dead wrong, and their elected leaders, monsters. The job of a statesman is to know when to build alliances, and if all else fails, be willing to give up his (or her) position for the sake of principle.
I look for someone, who, seeing my position here, fighting for an alternative message - a peaceful revolution - empathizes with this struggle; a likeminded individual to purchase this building, the Taylor Arcade, to help me counter the will of a deceivable majority.
And from here, take this cause worldwide!
ps What do I need to raise? Dennis Kappas, the landlord, is asking $750.000 for this building, The Taylor Arcade. This is what I need to raise. This way, I'll have enough to support InterNation, and add a staff - through the leases people pay for their shops. Think about it! Large media companies spend untold millions to put out their mainstream garbage, so tell me, why should Independent Media be left on the sidelines? Help me to build up a staff and present an alternative to the filtered news we receive in the papers. Please...support InterNation - and if not InterNation, INDYMEDIA!