A Destructive Crossroads

January 10, 2011

by Dylan Ratigan

(Editor’s Note: Ratigan is writing about the Arizona murders over the weekend. This article at once has NOTHING to do with secession, and has EVERYTHING to do with secession. In a departure from the norm, I’m going to pepper this article with comments in bold print.)

We find ourselves at a violent crossroads. Whether you are a national voice or an individual without a voice — there are simple questions we all must ask ourselves today. As individuals wrestle with either a modest or an extreme sense of unfairness in the American political system, the question we have to ask ourselves is “What are we going to do with that energy?

The logical solution is secession.

Whatever is to be said about the state of the gunman today, whether he had psychological issues or not, he was angry. Across America today, people are angry. They may choose to channel that anger in a number of either self-destructive or destructive ways. But whatever any of our feelings are, our challenge and our obligation is to channel that energy into a path based on resolution. For a path based on destruction is just that, destruction.

But resolution doesn’t necessarily mean trying to fix the unfixable American political system and the Washington criminal class.

There are two categories of people. The first category is those in the powerful elite — whether you are an active serving political leader in the legislature, a former political leader, governor or president, a leader of a non-profit group, or the leader of a political organization ranging from the NRA, MoveOn.org and the Sierra Club, or whether you are a national or local broadcaster focusing on political issues or some form of political strategist or advisor. This is the power class: The group that has a clear avenue of expression and power inside the political process, inside the political media, and inside politically organized institutions. Very well said, Dylan. You are in the power class. Remember the article written last year by Angelo Codevilla entitled America’s Ruling Class and the Perils of Revolution.

Or you may find yourself as the vast majority of Americans do, as a passive observer with little sense beyond your ability to vote — without having an avenue to express your beliefs and ideas when it comes to the national conversation.

Both the power class and the passive class are experiencing this sense of frustration and unfairness to one degree or another. Bullshit! The power class controls the national conversation entirely and sways the sheep however they wish. As the internalization of that energy is self-destructive, it begs the question…How do we as a nation, both as the power class and the passive class, express and ultimately resolve the ongoing unfairness that exists in this country to this day? Though we may not like to believe it, grave unfairness has existed since this country’s founding. OK, Dylan…who defines the word “unfairness? I promise the power class defines it differently than the passive class.

Yet, the beauty of the idea that is America is the principle of a government beholden to all of its citizens. As frustrating as the unfairness may appear to be, it is imperative we understand the context that this country has always represented: the ideals of quality and freedom. But our country has always fallen short — it has always been an ongoing process of trying to close the gap between that unfairness and our ideals.

Today, we find ourselves at a violent crossroads in American history as a result of our inability, or unwillingness to find a healthy outlet to resolve these problems. We now have two options. Internalize the energy into a sea of bile and resentment that will cause you to become less effective, productive and beneficial to those in your life. Internalizing this energy without finding a positive recourse is a recipe for personal disaster. I speak from experience. Internalizing that energy of unfairness, that frustration and that anger is a recipe for self-destruction from a personal to a national level.

We now find ourselves with a desperate need for an outlet for that energy, a need for an outlet that solves our problems rather than destroying ourselves or those around us. There is no better solution than S-E-C-E-S-S-I-O-N. It actually solves our problems peacefully, non-violently and sanely. Unfortunately, in both instances where secession was sought in America it devolved into violence. Perhaps this time we could avoid that, but power never seems to give up power without a fight.

So I pose two questions: For the power class, how are you using the energy of frustration and anger that revolves around the unfairness of this country? Are you using it as a tool to manipulate your environment in order to accumulate power, wealth, fame, or some other self-serving manifestation? The obvious answer…YES! Why would anyone think that the power class would not constantly try to grow their power base? Obama advisor Rahm Emanuel said, “Never let a serious crisis go to waste. What I mean by that is it’s an opportunity to do things you couldn’t do before.”

For the passive class, have you chosen to deal with your knowledge of this unfairness either through denial of its existence, or through a logical apathy founded upon the belief that nothing you do will matter? Continued participation in the voting process is both a denial of the existence of the unfairness and the apathy of the American voter, compounded by the credulity of the voters who still think that voting for party-approved candidates makes any difference. Two heads of the same coin.

It goes without saying that the events of today are a wake-up call for every American, regardless of their position in this society. And as we stand as a group at this violent fork in the road, will those within the power class take this wakeup call to acknowledge the responsibility they have to utilize their influence to serve the interests of increased fairness in America — even if that requires the suffering of personal losses or losses among your powerbase ? Of course they will not!! But let’s first reject the premise that the power class needs to serve “fairness.” The power class revolves around government, and those elected into the government take an oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution. The non-governmental members of the power class are directly influenced by the adherence to…or ignoring of the Constitution by the office-holders. That makes everyone in the power class either a criminal or an accessory after the fact. The violence in Arizona changes nothing substantively, but gives the power class another reason to attack individual liberty and property rights.

Understand that whether we like it or not, the personal indulgence of this exploitation by some in order to accumulate wealth and power is done so at a mortal danger to all Americans — each likely as concerned for the wellbeing of this country as you, the passive class, may believe yourself to be. Really, Dylan? You think that the bankers and Washington criminal class are concerned for the wellbeing of this country? What evidence would you offer to prove your belief?

America is in a desperate need of engagement by all of its citizens, and we all must understand that the luxury of denial and logical apathy among the passive can no longer be afforded. What we witnessed today is the worst expression of human nature. The unresolved frustration that led to today’s events not only took the lives of at least five people, but also destroyed the life of the shooter himself in the ultimate act of self-destruction. Shockwaves will be sent through the legislative body of America for months to come. Why? Will legislators begin to fear that their legislative actions might have physical consequences? Will the prospect of assassination cause lawmakers to pause and consider how they vote? That would also be the wrong conclusion to glean from this tragedy.

The path of destruction of ourselves, or of others, is an easy path. The path of resolution, shared sacrifice, and the brutal honesty necessary for those who are benefitting the most from the culture of unfairness that plagues this country today must be addressed. Dylan, you’re spot on. Shared sacrifice and brutal honesty are requirements for the secessionist camp. Because secession will be a very difficult process, as it should be.

It is easy for someone like myself or anybody else to get up on a soapbox and point fingers as to who may be a given bad guy, or where a given failure, may exist. But, setting a path to resolve the unfairness that plagues this country will originate not by looking outward at those whom we believe are perpetrating a given unfairness, but through a period of brutally honest inward reflection into the values that each of us apply to the ways we make the decisions in our days, from one minute to the next.

It is through investment in internal reflection that we can open the door to the knowledge that only our own happiness and fulfillment can manifest a peaceful path to resolving the problems that we face as a nation. Calling Bullshit again. What kind of lah-lah crap is Dylan trying to sell here? You will not experience “happiness and fulfillment” in an environment of 24/7 tyranny, regulation and subjugation. But you could be happy and fulfilled in a state that seceded from the Union and became a new nation.

Through that reflection, those in power can ask themselves whether they can muster the necessary courage to reject the forces of their own ego and their own paycheck to make what they know is the right decision. BS again…secessionists do not want to have the power class change themselves in any way. Secessionists do not want to destroy the United States. Secessionists simply want to LEAVE PEACEABLY.

Through that reflection, the passive class can muster the strength to shed the protections of denial and apathy. Reflection, my arse. The passive class must wake from their bad dream and come together to seek smaller governments and entirely forsake the nation called the United States of America.

While your voice may feel hollow by itself, the possibility of becoming part of a national chorus of awakened can serve as a deeper foundation for the compassion and wisdom to accept our own shortfalls and those of our leadership as we continue the national trip toward a more fair and free America. America is over. Washington is destroying America. The economy will collapse because of what Washington has done and continues to do. Washington cannot fix this. The ONLY logical recourse…the ONLY logical solution…is secession.

Dylan Ratigan is the Host of MSNBC’s “The Dylan Ratigan Show.”

Copyright © 2011 TheHuffingtonPost.com, Inc.