Blast from the past (“You can’t survive without being a rebel…”)

Back in my early 20s, as an undergrad, I used to collect underground zines and newsletters. In particular, the computer underground fascinated me. I stumbled on one zine called F.U.C.K – short for “Fucked Up College Kids” put out mainly by some kids who were part of Denver’s 303 scene in the early 90s.

A lot of the issues changed me, these guys were articulating the same feelings and sentiments I had, but couldn’t quite put into words. My struggles to understand a changing world and social order, my friendships, sexuality and women, an increasingly intrusive government, technology, and how I related to all of this as a young adult.  Going through old papers in storage I stumbled on old printouts of some back issues. It leaped out at me how much still relevant today. One writer in particular, Voyager, really struck me.

So I want to share a few things that deeply affected me and the way I thought about the world, long ago. If you are interested you can read it at http://attrition.org/fuck/fuckhome.html

In particular, this article is “so Money“. It was true in ’95, and is MORE true in 2009. The whole may hit you hard, but this single quote in particular speaks volumes:

“If you want to reproduce, succeed economically, or merely stay alive in modern America, you *must* become a rebel. Your other option is to be a meek virgin who spends all of his or her time indoors (afraid to go out, for fear of being robbed, raped, assaulted or murdered) filling out those 4,000 pages of IRS forms and sending your money away to a government which can’t protect you from anyone but yourself.”

Source: http://attrition.org/fuck/www/fuck0154.htm

So read more.

You Can't Survive Without Being A Rebel
                ---------------------------------------
                             (9.17.95)

Just the other day, a really fine example of the Contemporary American
Illiterate (Ilitteratus Americanus Contemperaneous) accused me of being
a natural born rebel.

While this accusation didn't exactly strike at the center of my sense of
self worth nor drive me to contemplate suicide -- it did cause me to
begin thinking about what causes individuals to rebel against society at
large.

What immediately struck me is how difficult it would be to survive
*without* being a rebel.  If one were to attempt to survive by following
the rules of society as officially stated, the natural evolutionary laws
would give the offender quite a punishment.  Here are a few examples of
the plight if the non-rebel in America today:

 ---------------
| Reproduction  |
 ---------------

Let's start off with an excerpt from the University of Miami Student
Handbook -- Appendix S, Sections 3.2111 through 3.2123 "Policy
Prohibiting Sexual Harassment":

        Sexual harassment encompasses any behavior directed toward an
        individual that is unwelcome and that serves no defensible
        educational purpose.  It may range from sexual innuendos,
        perhaps even in the guise of humor, to coerced sexual relations.
        Examples of verbal or physical conduct prohibited... include,
        but are not limited to:

                ... Direct propositions of a sexual nature;

                subtle pressure for sexual activity;...

                unwanted touching, patting, hugging, or brushing against
                a person;

                remarks of a sexual nature about a person's clothing or
                body;

                remarks about sexual activity or speculations about
                previous sexual experience...;

                repeated requests for a personal relationship or
                attention, provided that the requests would not have
                occurred except for the gender and/or sexual orientation
                of the complainant.

Apparently, the type of rebellious and politically incorrect activity
that could get me kicked out of the University of Miami include remarks
such as "Would you like to go out to dinner and a movie this Friday?"
(especially if I commit the mortal sin of asking *twice*) "Wow, you look
marvelous in that new dress." or "I'll bet that loser Eric Turbo has
never been with a woman in his life."  Hell, (note the violation of
political correctness) I could even be kicked out of school for
accidentally bumping into someone at a school dance.  Goodness, I hope
they don't mosh!

With the current social climate (arctic) in America today, it seems that
you must be a rebel if you intend to engage in sexual activity at all.
Perhaps this is a good thing, as politically correctness might be bred
out of the gene pool altogether.  On the other hand, perhaps the anally
retentive folks who write these sort of silly regulations would be much
easier to get along with if they could only manage to get laid once in a
while.  At least they would have more on their minds than my personal
social life.

 -------
| Taxes |
 -------

Why is being a rebel so popular?  Remember when our forefathers tossed
British tea into the Atlantic?  I wonder how they would feel about the
growth of government or the cost to the American tax payer today.

                                1914            1994

        Taxes Paid              $6.7 billion    $683.4 billion
        Per-capita Taxes        $69.00          $2,622.00
        Individual Filers       360,000         113,829,000
        % Population Filing     0.5%            45%
        IRS Budget              $110 million    $7.1 billion
        IRS Employees           4,000           >110,000
        Pages of Tax Law        14              9,400
        Pages of IRS Forms      4               4,000
        Top Tax Rate            7%              40%
        Median Family Tax Rate  0%              28% table>

        * Note: All amounts are in 1994 dollars

It's not just that American's cannot afford not to be rebels -- it is
almost impossible to avoid becoming a rebel by accident!  IRS employees
err on one of every 10 returns they enter into IRS computers.  If IRS
employees cannot understand tax law, how is it that they expect every
American to?  If every American were to devote the required time and
effort to understanding our 9,400 pages of tax law, the country would be
so broke from the productivity loss that none of us would need to file
taxes!

 --------------
| Self Defense |
 --------------

America is, and seemingly always has been, the land of violence. The
difference is, today we are expected not to defend ourselves.

The first modern police forces in America were instituted in New York,
Boston, and Philadelphia during the period between 1835 and 1845.  They
were established only to augment citizen self-protection.  It was never
intended that they act affirmatively, prior to or during criminal
activity or violence against individual citizens.  There was no thought
of police displacing the citizens' right of self-protection.  Nor could
they, even if it were intended.  Before this time, American citizens -
even in large cities - were expected to protect themselves and each
other. Indeed, they were legally required to pursue and attempt to
apprehend criminals.

The government has recently begun to fear it's rebellious citizens, and
has decided to disarm us.  We are not allowed to purchase firearms
capable of firing more that 10 rounds without reloading, firearms
capable of firing multiple rounds automatically, or rifles or shotguns
with short barrels.  Nor are we allowed to carry firearms to defend
ourselves against crime.  Here are the results:

        One violent crime occurs every 22 seconds
        One aggravated assault occurs every 28 seconds
        One robbery occurs every 47 minutes
        One forcible rape occurs every 5 minutes
        One murder occurs every 22 minutes
        One property crime occurs every 3 seconds
        One larceny-theft occurs every 4 seconds
        One burglary occurs every 11 seconds
        One vehicle theft occurs every 20 seconds

If we are legally prevented from defending ourselves, can we expect the
government to protect us from criminals?  Not according to the above
statistics, and not according to the government itself.  In Warren v.
District of Columbia D.C.'s highest court stated that it is a
"fundamental principle of American law that a government and its agents
are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police
protection, to any individual citizen."  In McKee v. City of Rockwall,
Texas the U. S. District Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit held
that "no constitutional violation [occurred] when the most that can be
said of the police is that they stood by and did nothing..."  The
government passes laws making it illegal for us to defend ourselves, and
then denies responsibility for the criminal madness that ensues.

In Riss v. City of New York the dissenting opinion of New York's high
court had this to say about the courts ruling that the government was
not at fault in denying Ms. Riss the right to defend herself by carrying
a handgun legally and also denying Ms. Riss police protection.

        "What makes the City's position [denying any obligation to
        protect the woman] particularly difficult to understand is that,
        in conformity to the dictates of the law [she] did not carry any
        weapon for self-defense. Thus, by a rather bitter irony she was
        required to rely for protection on the City of New York which
        now denies all responsibility to her."

If Ms. Riss had been a rebel, her former boyfriend, against whom she had
unsuccessfully sought police protection and/or a gun permit, would not
have been able to blind and disfigure her with acid on the eve of her
engagement.  Ms. Riss would have shot the worthless bastard dead, when
she could still see.

FBI crime statistics indicate that 1 in 4 American households will
become victimized by one or more crimes each year.  Are you going to be
a law breaking rebel or are you going to leave the job of defending your
life and your property to the clearly inept and careless government?

 ---------
| Summary |
 ---------

If you want to reproduce, succeed economically, or merely stay alive in
modern America, you *must* become a rebel.  Your other option is to be a
meek virgin who spends all of his or her time indoors (afraid to go out,
for fear of being robbed, raped, assaulted or murdered) filling out
those 4,000 pages of IRS forms and sending your money away to a
government which can't protect you from anyone but yourself.

                                                        Voyager[TNO]

Special thanks to P.J. O'Rourke, Dick Bachert and Peter Kasler."

_EOF

3 Comment

  1. […] bloggers I read recently wrote on this subject. First, Kamal S. posted an essay entitled “You Can’t Survive Without Being A Rebel.” An excerpt: Just the other day, a really fine example of the Contemporary American […]

  2. […] bloggers I read recently posted on this subject. First, Kamal S. posted an essay entitled “You Can’t Survive Without Being A Rebel.” An excerpt: Just the other day, a really fine example of the Contemporary American Illiterate […]

  3. […] bloggers I read recently posted on this subject. First, Kamal S. posted an essay entitled “You Can’t Survive Without Being A Rebel.” An excerpt: Just the other day, a really fine example of the Contemporary American […]

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