Rambling Depression For Holiday Conversation

What goes up must come down

Especially egos.

Check the ego, kill the ego.

This is what buddha taught.

Or is this more gibberish from a mad mind?

Is it the lies we tell ourselves that make our opinions?

“Don’t talk politics this holiday.” Is the credo of the people

Who don’t want you to look in their closet.

You won’t just find skeletons in their,

You’ll find their klan hoods to.

Say my name!

Some of you may recall, Fox News doxxed me in August of 2019.

In a segment dedicated to harassing the DSA and myself, Tucker Carlson seemed to have an affinity for my name.

Tucker Carlson said my name, “James Jackson, from Sacramento,” at least 10 times in his 20 minute segment about me.

He did this the same week that there were two public shootings in one day, but whatever, he wanted to talk about me, that’s certainly respectful of the situation. (Insert Eyeroll Emoji Here!)

Truth be told, I think the only reason he gave me a whole segment of his show is because he loves saying my name, and I can’t blame him. James Jackson is a damn good, strong name, much better than Tucker Carlson.

No disrespect to the other Tuckers in the world, but “Tucker Carlson,” is a generic and uninspired name. James Jackson is the kind of name that lives on through history. It is a name that will be remembered, especially when it is the name of a writer. I honestly can’t imagine a more meaningless existence, a life that is less important to history, than the life of a cable news pundit.

Have fun saying my name Tucker, it will be in the history books long after your existence is forgotten thanks to the fact that no one actually loves or has ever loved you.

So Tucker, say my name!

James Jackson from Sacramento.

El Mundo Con Evo! How His Interview With Jon Stewart Changed My Life

I am sure by now you are aware that there has been a right wing coup in Bolivia against Evo Morales, the nation’s socialist and first indigenous president.

There is little more I can say about this that has not already been said. I am not an expert on international relations, nor am I an expert on Latin American culture.

What I am is a socialist who believes in international solidarity, and that is thanks to Evo Morales.

Picture this: I was fifteen years old, I had already earned a reputation as an “activist” at my school because I was quite vocal about my hatred for George W Bush and rich people, which opened me up to the taunting of a right wing student body at my school.

I knew that Bush was evil, I also knew that the Democrats were being cowards for never even attempting to impeach him. This was around 2007 and the Democrats were pathetic to me. Democratic “leaders” were still not defending gay marriage and most had still yet to come to terms with the fact that invading Iraq was a mistake. I also knew that Democrats who hated the poor had no business calling themselves “Democrats.” I was taught by my parents that a “Democrat” was supposed to believe in social programs and would never cut them.

I called myself a Democrat, but deep down I knew that these pro-corporate, anti-poor Democrats did not represent me.

While I was an activist, politically speaking I felt very alone.

I knew I believed in more people owning what I called “the wealth” and having more democracy, but I had no word for what it was I believed in or what I even meant by “wealth.” Combine that with the backdrop full of my teenage right wing bullies, and you get an idea of how alone I felt. Confused, isolated, angry, and alone.

Then one night, when I was taking my solace in the humor of Jon Stewart as most on the left were keen to in those days, he had on a guest that was different from any of the others I had watched on the show.

It was Evo Morales, the newly elected president of Bolivia.

I was enthralled with that interview. For one my eyes were opened for the first time to the realities of imperialism and white supremacy. When I learned that Morales was Bolivia’s first Indigenious president I was shocked, naive as I was, I thought that by now most leaders in Latin America were indigenous or of indegenious desent.

This was not all. Evo talked about the programs of his nation, how they are reclaiming wealth and redistributing it, and how his government was fighting multi national corporations and protecting the environment.

I was only 15, but when I heard what he believed and fought for I realized that he spoke for me more than any Democrat at the time ever had.

This was how I realized that I was a socialist!

After that interview I dove deep into the red rabbit hole. From Evo Morales, I found Marx, from Marx I found Lenin, this would eventually lead me to Occupy, to Anonymous, to Bernie Sanders, and it all eventually led me to the DSA, where I am now a chapter co-chair.

All of this was started by an interview with Evo Morales on a comedy show.

The man had a level of integrity that I found inspiring, and what is amazing is after 14 years he still has that integrity. In an attempt to prevent violence he conceded to another election, despite having clearly won the first time, and when that did not appease the right wing’s blood thirst he conceded power all together, all in the hopes of saving his loved ones and party members from violence.

This is the power of socialists, the power of integrity.

I can trace my socialism back to several things, my upbringing, my family history, my experiences growing up surrounded by annoying over privileged white boys, but I owe it most to Evo Morales.

One thing he said in that interview was so simple, but it stuck with me for so long.

When Jon Stewart conceded that in America, the election system is pretty much “rigged” against the idea of a poor indigenous farmer from becoming president. Evo, with a simple yet genuine reply, said, “If it’s rigged then something needs to be done to change that.”

So simple yet so true, something needs to be done!

Watch full video here.

So Often We Are Told

So often we are told

“It’s human nature.”

“It’s always been like this.”

“There is nothing I can do.”

You’ll cringe at a meme but not at these words?

Does jaded fear and hopelessness

Not shiver the spine of the unhumbled optimist?

It does.

So often we are told things that are not true.

There are no poetics here,

I am just tired.

Tired of hearing it,

So tired.

Warren’s Redeeming Quality

I realize that I have become a relatively harsh critic of Elizabeth Warren lately, but I feel that is the point of a primary, you need to go hard for your candidate and my candidate is definitely Bernie. As a socialist, I prefer to only vote for other socialists when I get the chance.

However I do have to give credit where credit is due, to any candidate. I did so when Kamala Harris scrutinized Joe Biden for his racism and I must do so now with Warren.

While I still do not entirely trust Warren, I will admit she is my number 2 after Bernie. I have one simple reason why, second to Bernie she is the most pro-union out of the other Democratic candidates.

However, there are staunch differences between Sander’s and Warren’s unionism. Warren believes in what I call the “good relationship” model of unions, meaning she believes in allowing people to organize but that a good relationship can also be developed between the union and management. This model can help workers gain modest protections at the workplace but inevitably perpetuates capitalism and cronyism.

Bernie’s unionism is a unionism by and for the worker. Bernie’s labor platform gives much more incentive to democratized and co-op workplaces. However what can be said of both candidates is that they have been on the picket line for multiple strike actions. Both are supporting the UAW strike against GM, Warren was vocal in her support for Stop n Shop’s striking clerks, and let us not forget Bernie’s recent visit to the Chicago Teacher’s Union.

There are further questions to be answered. It has been alleged that Warren has crossed a picket line at the Las Vegas Palms casino multiple times. Considering how Warren has a track record of changing the tone of her message based on her audience, it would not be suprising if Warren was one day pro-union and the next pro-management.

Let me conclude by saying this is neither an attack nor an endorsement of Warren, I am still very much in support of Bernie. I do however think that Warren is the only other candidate who has genuinely gone out of their way to recognize unions. While I disagree with her on many things it is important to see how vital the support of labor has become once again in elections. With democratic candidates fighting it out for the support of labor, the working class has a chance to realize their class power if they use their votes to their advantage. Labor has the best chance to be heard by either Warren or Sanders, no other candidates take the working classes seriously.

20 Years In Hell

20 years in hell.

6 months in purgatory.

Our was it just 1 month in county jail?

Time means nothing when your in shackles

Even though it is all they give you.

The filth and grime on the bottom of my bare foot replaces

any dignity I had.

And the cold, do not make me mention the cold,

Just the thought chills my corpse,

Not my body, I am no longer alive in this place.

They call it prison, but it is actually a morgue.

We are not people, we are corpses, and the cold preserves us.

Hell is only hot in the summer, usually it’s cold.

20 years in hell.

3 strikes your out.

20 years in hell.

The Defense of Theory

Many will say that they are not “interested” in reading about socialist theory and that they would rather just “take action.” Many of these people forsake political education in order to express themselves solely through direct action. But direct action without purpose or analysis is not direct action, it is masturbation.

The argument against theoretical discussion is usually one revolving around the premise that organizing from “lived experiences” and “action” are more revolutionary than reading.

This reasoning is not only flawed, it is right wing and a symptom of capitalism.

Let me begin by saying that direct action for the sake of direct action is a waste of everyone’s time. Symbolic gestures and protests have their place but any protest, be it symbolic or insurrectionary, must have a clear and achieveable demand. (Close the Camps! Pass a Green New Deal! Fire Racist Killer Cops! Contracts Now! Divest from GeoGroup! etc.)

Direct action that is purely “symbolic” and ideological with no clear, achievable material demand is not to the benefit of the working class, but a way for do nothing ultra-lefts and over privileged liberals to validate themselves and their own identities. Protests that are done for the sake of doing them are insults to the working class. Protest that is done with an objective goal gets the goods. Protest for the sake of protest is not protest, period.

Further, the reasoning that “lived experiences” are more important than reading or discussing theory is inherently nearsighted because it differentiates learning as something to not be considered a lived experience.

Is reading not a lived experience? Is learning not an experience? Have lives not been changed because of conversations, forums, and thoughts? The act of reading and discussing theory IS a lived experience and should be considered just as important to organizing as is blocking an intersection or arranging a picket.

I also maintain that if you want to organize your community and build alternatives to capitalism, you need to read and learn from past attempts. Past revolutions, the Paris Commune, the creation and collapse of the Internationales, the Occupy Movement, the Black Panthers and so much more, we need to look at the movements, trends, and organizations of the past and present and study them so that we may better study ourselves!

One cannot spend all their time merely discussing how to organize, it is true that some get caught up more in the theoretical than the practical but that is not an excuse to never bother to learn or discuss theory. One must also not make the mistake in thinking that showing up for every single protest is actual organizing. One must never put street theatrics ahead of the pursuit of material gains but rather must always utilize them for the sole purpose of making gains.

It is true that the best organizing comes through lived experience, and I maintain that reading and learning is a form of lived experience. Leftists who decry theory perpetuate the anti intellecutalism perpetuated by the right wing. Leftists who just want to act and not process that action are perpetuating the reactionary nature of a capitalist society. We cannot build alternatives to capitalism if we are constantly stopping everything we do to react to it. Theory is the analysis of action, it always has been and always will be.

Reading theory is just as much of a lived experience as anything else and is therefore integral to organizing.

Reading is a lived experience, to say it is not is to be anti intellectual, to be anti intellectual is to be reactionary, to be ractionary is to be capitalist. Therefore if you are anti theory, you are in fact pro capitalist.