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I think that a lot of my time since my last post — a good two weeks, I’m now coming to realize — has been spent parsing the vast quantity of information that has been thrown at me in that time.  In the past two weeks, we’ve seen Presidential and Vice-Presidential Debates, an economic meltdown, and a failure of the U.S. government to address that economic meltdown.  The other day Victor said, “I hate saying this, but I think your people — people under 25 — are the only real innocents in this.  You’re also the most fucked.”

Young people spend an awful lot of time blaming older, supposedly wiser people for fucking up.  It’s still amazing to me how little people in my age bracket know about the economic meltdown, what is being done about it, what it means for them, and why they should care.  It’s still amazing to me how easily we get numbed to the information that gets thrown at us on a daily basis.  It’s still amazing to me how little so many people around me seem to really care.

I’m not talking about registering to vote or going to Obama rallies.  It has yet to be seen whether the Obama phenomenon is an isolated event or the beginning of a long-term change.  I’m still convinced that if McCain won the election, everyone would be bummed but nobody would be in the streets throwing Molotov cocktails at riot squads.  Maybe the fact that we won’t be rioting is for the best, but being bummed out about perpetuating this nasty status quo?  I don’t think that’s for the best.

I don’t honestly believe people of my generation are any more or less apathetic than of my parents’ generation.  I’m not deluded into thinking that the old footage you see of marches and protests in the ’60s were footage of most of America.  Though the protests were widespread, what does widespread really mean?  Geographically?  People have been feeling powerless for a while now, and it’s not our fault we’d rather plug into our computers or Xboxes.

It’s hard work changing the status quo.  It takes a lot of energy and willpower to care about a system that is essentially designed to disenfranchise pretty much everybody I associate myself with.  Changing that system?  A Herculean effort.

But there’s dissatisfaction.  There’s disgust.  There’s a feeling of being backhanded by the rest of the world and then left to nurse the wounds alone with our inner turmoil.  There’s anger.  Where does it go?  Where should we send it?  Who really cares?

I like to keep in mind, whenever considering political candidates, that everyone has a price.  People can be bought out, and we aren’t doing the buying.  A question I think we should be asking ourselves: how can we turn into producers of political capital the way that the weathy and the enfranchised are?  How do we enfranchise ourselves in a system designed to keep people quiet?  What ways do the guardians of the status quo expect us to strike?  And can we devise a way to strike that is entirely unexpected?



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