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Artwork for banner adapted from "Mister X," by William P. Marks, Vortex Comics • Blog Title from "Serenity" by Joss Whedon _________________________ A fiber artist making wool felt garments and local wool fleece and yarns on the side, Previously, I have been all these things: • architecture office manager • department store clerk • restaurant: waitress, bartender & barback, cashier, busboy, dishwasher, prep cook, line cook, manager • architecture student • engineering draftsman • graphic designer • advertising art director • magazine publisher • fanzine: publisher, editor, writer, photographer, designer • garage band manager • web designer & programmer • database (FM pro) developer • software trainer • non-profit organization staff member • ad salesman • fiber artist: weaver, spinner, tapestry weaver, dyer, feltmaker • reader • writer • sailor • runner • drinker, toker • big sister • oldest child • wife (2x) • swinging divorcee


FEBRUARY 22, 2011 10:01PM

A Rising Tide Drowns the Boatbuilder

Rate: 14 Flag


Photo taken of the cathedral foundation  in Amalfi, Italy. 

Across the globe, in ancient times, the practice was to sacrifice a life when raising a structure. This sacrifice to the gods was often a human slave in Graeco-Roman times, and the practice was continued in Europe up til the 18th century. Bridges and churches,  in particular, have human skeletons embedded in the foundations, and the nursery rhyme “London Bridge is falling down” contains references to the custom. Even the Brooklyn Bridge is rumored to have workmen purposefully buried in the structure to ensure the stability of the bridge. 

Children, slaves, beggars and lowly workmen were consistently chosen for the sacrifice, grabbed and shoved into a hole in the earth before being covered in rubble or stone. The beneficiaries of the luck these deaths bought were the rich men who built the bridges and the Catholic clergy who commissioned the churches. Apparently, we are seeing a revival of the ritual sacrifice of the poor to buoy the fortunes of the wealthy. 


Luxury Super Yacht, Christine from 

The maxim, “A rising tide lifts all boats,” has been used most often by supply-siders to defend tax cuts for the wealthy. We see now that they are more intent on riding that tide far, far away from the source of their original success and they intend to thank the boatbuilder by taking away his pension, cutting his salary and his healthcare, closing his childrens’ schools, and freely poisoning his food, air and water. Our corporate leaders, mouthing patriotic slogans,  would rather see the United States become a third world nation rather than to pay a little more in taxes. Or to pay their workers a living wage. 


The grand staircase on Christine. Wonder if there are poor people locked in steerage below.  

Countless lives are being sacrificed in real time to cushion the wealthy from having to forgo that third or fourth car, that extra maid, that week in a Caribbean resort.  Or to buy another East Asian sweatshop to make goods for the Chinese or Indian middle class. They just don’t want to give up their disposable income for the dirty American people, those who have lost their middle class security, those who don’t have jobs or disposable income. Those who don’t matter. Those whose lives are meaningless to them, except to bury under their fortunes.  

With the Republicans as their lapdogs, and the Tea party as their dupes, the wealthy have grown increasingly bold in putting the rest of the population under their heel. Attacks on the unions, on public workers, on women and children’s programs, on public broadcasting, all these new initiatives are designed to suppress spending for any other purpose than for no-bid contracts for energy polluters, weapons manufacturers, pharmaceutical makers and corporate agriculture, just to name a few.  We can see the Koch brothers behind many of the emboldened legislators, but they are not the only super-rich purchasers of government toadies. 


David Koch's mansion in the Hamptons. Wonder who was buried in his foundation. 

Wisconsin is just the first place where the intended sacrificial bodies were to be buried, but the victims aren’t standing for it. Indiana is next and we should expect to have to stand out in the cold in all our states, yell and scream and show these handful of fat old men that we will not lie in the hole they’ve dug for us. Remember that we outnumber them. When the Egyptian people are buying us pizzas to help us keep our resolve, but our own legislators are trying to take the food from our children’s mouths, it’s pretty clear who our allies are. And it isn’t our corporate leaders. They are too busy uncorking champagne on their yachts. 


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Yachts vs minnows
The Sea has no memory
But tears for
all yachts
to become
S.S Minnows
"... the millionaire and his wife..."

Janie, I don't know that we'll lose, if we actually stand up to them. If the Egyptians can do it, we can too.
it feels as if the people are rising. We need to remember there is power and beauty in numbers. They won't go easy but I sense they will be gone because there is no hiding now. The Internet and the technology they helped develope will be used against them.
I refuse to be buried...great post, Ardee...xox
It's easy to demonize the rich and certainly anti-social behavior should not be tolerated. But I prefer what Gandhi said of the ruling British who were just as corrupt: "I want to change their minds – not kill them for weaknesses we all possess."

We are what we allow. As long as we put our trust in a system that rewards greed and human selfishness, inevitably it is the most greedy who will rise to the top. One cannot claim one wants one's fair share when one subscribes to greed above all as a way of life.

It's like when the ancient Hebrews clamored for a king even though God told them the king would screw them over. They chose to have one anyway but in doing so God would suffer none of their complaints over the King's treatment of them afterwards.

It's not the job of the rich to fix our lives. It is folly to expect that or to trust them. Until we each choose to take responsibility for our lives and not leave it to others there is no system or path that is sustainable.
Harry, I don't expect the rich to fix our lives. I expect them to pay their fair share of taxes, bring jobs back to America, pay a living wage to their workers, stop gaming Wall Street, and stop buying politicians. And stop giving idiots like Glenn Beck and the Tea partiers a microphone and cash to spread lies.
good post L, rated it. being vocal about what you really want and never losing sight of what might be good for most is imp in any democracy.
You have made some fantastic points in this post, and I read that too about the pizza--just amazing and wonderful. And JOPS, why do you have to be such a downer? We have not lost. It's not over yet, but yes good people have died in this fight, but the tide is turning, I do believe. This is really just the beginning. The workers all over the world rising up--reminds me of Bruce Springsteen and the movie Reds. But then almost everything does.
What was that old saying? The tree of liberty is watered by the blood of plutocrats.
Ardee: What a well written and beautiful post. I have been amazed this week at the terrific writing and heartfelt support for Wisconsin on OS. This really drives the point home. Really, Wisconsin is almost like a gift and this is what it has taken to remind us what it was like under Geo. W. Bush and how we can never, ever let our guard down! Rated with pride.
If we all do not stand now, we will all be on our collective knees forever Ardee.
I loved this post. It speaks the truth. I would rather die standing than groveling on my belly, wallowing in the dirt.
We all must stand up. All of us.
Thanks all of you for commenting. I have had so little time lately to write or visit OS, but the events in this country are haunting me and I had to let some of the fury leak out. Wish I could stay today, but gotta go. Keep up the anger and the resolve!!!!
It's kind of ironic seeing Americans demonstrating around the Wisconsin state capital (again after a lapse of 40 years) along with demonstrators in Egypt, Libya, Bahrain and Tunisia. Fortunately there's no one threatening to shoot them down.
It all makes me want to cry.
The globalization theme song “A rising tide lifts all boats” was skewered by Ralph Nader as "the rising tide that lifts all yachts". The Christina would seem to offer glaring proof of that. I go Ralph one better and describe globalization as "the tsunami that sinks all life rafts".
I think there are some rich Democrats, too.