Wednesday, 1 June 2011

She Needs Us All

I thought I'd just overlook it as childish resentment, but this is, I'm afraid, bullshit.

(Who the hel is Kevin Tucker anyway? I'm asking myself. Oh yes -  the dude who controls the Black and Green Press. Some good stuff published there.)

Anyway, the main point of this screed appears to be an accusation (levelled particularly at Derrick Jensen and Lierre Keith) of authoritarianism.

I admit I had to scratch my head a bit at that.

You simply can not have a critique of civilization that overlook the prevalence and central role that power and the conditions which make power possible hold over any society, indigenous or modernized.

OK, agreed.But then Tucker continues:

That is something Derrick has spoken about, but it’s clear that he’s just playing lip-service. He has literally said that he has no problem with authority, and as he and Lierre have shown, they’re rather fond of calling the cops

Personally, I wouldn't dismiss the critique of centralised power as something Derrick has merely spoken about; I'd say it's one of his central themes. Take a look at some of the premises for Endgame:

Premise Three: Our way of living—industrial civilization—is based on, requires, and would collapse very quickly without persistent and widespread violence.

Premise Four: Civilization is based on a clearly defined and widely accepted yet often unarticulated hierarchy. Violence done by those higher on the hierarchy to those lower is nearly always invisible, that is, unnoticed. When it is noticed, it is fully rationalized. Violence done by those lower on the hierarchy to those higher is unthinkable, and when it does occur is regarded with shock, horror, and the fetishization of the victims.

Premise Five: The property of those higher on the hierarchy is more valuable than the lives of those below. It is acceptable for those above to increase the amount of property they control—in everyday language, to make money—by destroying or taking the lives of those below. This is called production. If those below damage the property of those above, those above may kill or otherwise destroy the lives of those below. This is called justice.

This is not just lip service. This is serious critique.
And this has absolutely nothing to do with an individual's willingness, or otherwise, to call the police when personally attacked. For I believe that this is Tucker's main gripe- that Derrick Jensen has indeed called in the local police when his home was repeatedly burgled, and that Lierre Keith reported to the police when a bunch of masked people hit her in the face with a cayenne pepper-laced pie at a bookfair.

I abhor the police, but I, too, will force them out of their skulking behind the seats of power to do the jobs they are ostensibly supposed to do if I am in the position of victim. I see no problem with that.

The master's tools may, indeed, be used to dismantle the master's house, and probably more effectively to boot. Some of us work from within the system, and one of Jensen's oft-repeated refrains has been We need it all.

Yes, we do. And we certainly don't need this carping, petty-veneered hostility from some bloke who has a personal distaste for Jensen. Look beyond your ego's crowding demands: the Earth has need of us - All.