An Alien Power in Contemporary America…

Stephen Kuusisto, Letters to Borges

“It is not me,” you say. “It’s not me who causes all the trouble in the village square.” You’re right of course. Those aren’t your nazis. Hell you don’t even know a nazi.

“I know it’s not me,” you say.“

Yes you have white privilege, or you’ve succeeded at Capitalist Parcheesi despite your origin and you take a good vacation once a year. You’ve a basement crammed full of excess stuff. You fully understand the time you’ve spent acquiring non-essential commodities is time you could have used doing something else.

“Someone else will take care of the nazis,” you think. “Someone else will clean up the environment, guarantee equal opportunity for those disabled children down the street.”

Nazis grow when you’re not awake.

It’s not your fault. You gave to the March of Dimes.

I believe nazis appear when our garages are filled with too much crap.

Marx had it right:  “Under private property … Each tries to establish over the other an alien power, so as thereby to find satisfaction of his own selfish need. The increase in the quantity of objects is therefore accompanied by an extension of the realm of the alien powers to which man is subjected, and every new product represents a new potentiality of mutual swindling and mutual plundering.”

Nazis grow when people are being swindled.

“It’s not me,” you say. You’re right of  course.

Forgive me. I know I’m being supercilious.

I have a basement filled with junk.

Author: skuusisto

Poet, Essayist, Blogger, Journalist, Memoirist, Disability Rights Advocate, Public Speaker, Professor, Syracuse University

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