The Golem: a modern observation inspired by an old Hebrew folktale.
December 19, 2013
There are millions of Americans who, once financially secure, are now homeless and broke. We have just witnessed the greatest theft of personal wealth in American history, deliberately done. "But" say the banks, "we stole it fair and square."
Adhering to the strict "liberties "of capitalism and selective interpretation of the Constitution, a new corporate person, who is now our brother citizen, has done to us what we ourselves have done to so many others along the way. In the process we have created a Golem. Unlike you and I, this soulless creature thinks not with a brain, but with a computer. It runs on oil and is lubricated by the blood of our sons and daughters at war abroad and in the streets of America.
We are now punishing the Golem for its transgressions; but the Golem knows its creator quite well and denies any fault or responsibility. It is easily changing the rules and manipulating a divided citizenry, especially when the people are mesmerized by shiny trinkets and toys and games … child's play.
A large percentage of our stolen wealth is hidden overseas, doing nothing. It has become wealth beyond need or worth, and while we are busily fretting about the future financial security of our progeny, we fail to realize that it's already gone.
Capitalism was a system developed in the Middle Ages as a means to finance ventures and avoid the mortal sin of usury.
Instead of loaning money at interest, stock in the venture was sold and later traded. What we have today is not capitalism but gambling on Wall Street and in the insurance industry.
As in any casino, the game is tilted toward the house. They own the place and they make the rules. They feed the Golem.
Government is supposed to prevent the over-exploitation of the working class.
There are good people in government who try to do that, but if they are not willing to compromise their principles, they are isolated and ignored.
Except for Congress, money doesn't really buy votes, it buys stories, and many people prefer to be told what to think by one-sided preachers and pundits. There can be no meaningful discussion if facts and arithmetic are ignored, only stories … child's play.
The Golem and its minions control more money than all of the rest of us combined. It has no party loyalty except to the party that feeds it, and the more parties that feed it, the better. The only thing the Golem can give back is illusion — the illusion of wealth, job security, retirement and health care. For millions of Americans, these things are suddenly gone, rubbed out. Stolen.
And the Lord said unto them, "What does it profit a person to store his wealth up in this world but lose his eternal soul?" The new pope is already being condemned for criticizing capitalism … which he didn't do. He was criticizing greed, one of the deadly sins. Alongside the Ten Commandments and the Constitution should be taught the seven deadly sins. Perhaps then we would no longer have to witness people fighting over gifts in the name of the Prince of Peace and champion of charity. The wealthy bestow charity the same way the Pharisees prayed loudly in public, so all could witness their piety and generosity.
Needless to say, the Hebrew legend ends badly for the townspeople. How will it end for us? What can we do to regain control of our destiny?
Well, nothing. Jumping up and down at meetings, marching in the street, writing opinion pieces and the anarchy of the Internet have done nothing but feed the Golem.
Our only recourse is to starve it. The way to starve the Golem is to do nothing. Just stop.
Pick a date, and through the social media, call a general strike for all but emergency personnel.
In other countries, it usually takes 1.5 days for the people to get what they want. If our so-called leaders can shut down the government, we can shut down the country.
We are a working people and we find it hard to do nothing, but we have run out of options. Call it a "National Day Off."
They can't arrest you for staying home. What do we want? Oh, don't worry, it'll come to you.
John Keane lives in Grass Valley.