This Land Is Your Land

Words and music by Woody Guthrie.

From a link on my wife’s Facebook’s feed came a video showing a fellow asking the question, “where is my land?” There was no context to his question, but if it was in the context of Woody Guthrie’s song, “This Land is My Land”, then his Land is still there.

The problem is, according to Ralph Nader in an August 2nd show on CSpan:, The “Land” that he is asking about has been taken over by corporatists, and, as the name of Ralph’s book implies, there is an unstoppable movement ready to take it back.

According to Ralph, the “land” is still there, but what has been lost is the freedom of contract.  I think he is right, but the other commentator’s in the video have very good points also. It’s nearly a Singularity moment, as Ralph is speaking before a CATO audience with the other speaker coming from another Right Wing think tank.

The easiest way to think about this is in the terms of contract that you have to agree to when downloading software on to your computer. You have to click on to the button that suggest one has agreed to the terms of use of the software, or you don’t get to use the software. There really is no choice there, because if you click that you don’t agree, you don’t get the software.

Of course my example is the least significant example one can use, but you get the point, i.e. all your choices come from the corporation. The corporation in the U.S. is now human, and most of the real choices we have today come from “them”.

As a dig on Ralph, one of the speakers, a Daniel McCarthy in the Cspan video, aptly calls it “Corporal Liberalism”. He make the correct point that there is nothing either Corporate nor Liberal about it. We are in a consumer economy, and the freedom lost is the one that we used to make between a mortal human and ourselves.  Once upon a time humans had the freedom to enter into a contract or a Constitution, with other humans, and thanks to the SCOTUS that freedom is nearly gone.

But it is a cultural thing. Liberalism and Conservatism creates a cultural friction that is contained within either a structure that is of the Right or Left network configuration. The difference in the configuration being how the structure handles friction. The structural network of the Left handles friction using the edges between the nodes, while the structural network of the Right handles friction using the nodes as a normalizing force.

But the significance isn’t in the handling of the friction–the significance is that there is structure present to handle the friction. The significant part of Ralph’s logic is that combining the Left and Right doesn’t destroy the friction handling abilities of structure, as the Tea Party is threatening to do, but uses the structures of the Left and Right to bring about Operational Change.

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