Fighting Back is the New Normal
I remember the old Communist regimes of Eastern Europe, as do many people of my generation.
Boy, those guys really had countries sewn up and buttoned down!
There were complete controls on internal travel, micro control of anything and everything uttered by the media, thought police, neighbours grassing up neighbours for expressing the wrong opinion, a relentless barrage of state propaganda, dissidents sent to the Gulags or condemned to psych wards where their brains were fried and a hard core of dedicated Communist party members – maybe 20% of the population I guess – to give the Party a solid bedrock of support.
And there was no internet. The spreading of ideas was by word of mouth (dangerous) or using the old mimeograph machines to run off some clumsy newsletters or leaflets (more dangerous) which then had to be covertly distributed (even more dangerous).
It was pretty grim. You wonder how those people ever managed to get free of it. But they did.
Against those seemingly overwhelming suppressive odds the human spirit and its yearning for liberty and the free exchange of ideas prevailed and those brutal, scary micro-controlling regimes collapsed.
The Russian parliament even ended up getting shelled by the tanks of its own army!
There is a lesson in all this for all governments: if you want to perish fairly rapidly, do what the old CP did.
I remembered then, Thomas Paine, the English revolutionary who became one of the Founding Fathers of the US. He played a vastly important role in the inspiring of the French and American revolutions and did so through the power of the written word conveyed by pamphleteering. In 1776 he published to international acclaim, “Common Sense”, which was the first pamphlet to advocate American independence.
Be that as it may, the point I am making here is that I well remember that those people had no internet, no mobiles, nothing but crude mimeograph machines by which they would slowly print off a few smudged copies of their dissident newsletters and handouts. And Thomas Paine did not even have the mimeograph!
People held those little pamphlets in their hands, read them, assimilated the info on them and passed them on.
There’s something about a solid piece of paper you hold in your hands. It carries more authority – more weight literally – somehow than the bazillions of electronic pulses that flash across your laptop screens.
I’d been thinking about the poor ruddy shopkeepers, cafe owners, publicans, gym owners and so forth victimised by our criminal government’s strikes against our communities using the smoke screen of their faked-up pandemic.
And remembering the power of what those guys in Eastern Europe and earlier in France and America did, I had a wild idea as to something our shopkeepers, publicans, cafe owners etc etc can do to fight back a little bit against the suppression – without doing anything illegal.
Suppose somebody put together some brief leaflet- or pamphlet-style messages explaining and exposing in bold, simple terms the hoax the government is running – and including an easy-to-remember link to a website where they can find out more info.
Suppose he then sends by email that message to whoever wants to use it.
The recipient then prints off on his computer a few copies of it (he can even change the wording before he does so if he wants, doesn’t matter).
He then places the leaflets on his shop counter, reception desk, bar or wherever customers can see them and pick them up.
Customers come in, pick up a leaflet, read it and make what they will of it.
This can also be extended into other areas if anyone wants to. The leaflets can “accidentally on purpose” be left on public transport or here and there, quietly and unobtrusively on shelves in supermarkets and so forth. The more swashbuckling souls among us can put them on car windscreens, through letter boxes or give them out in the street.
It is very casual. People just run off a few copies and leave them for other people to notice and pick up. There’s no pressure, no arguments. The promotional pieces themselves are very matter-of-fact and avoid any distempered tones.
Many will already know the info in the leaflet. But they might hand it to someone else or leave it where someone else can pick it up.
Others will read it and it won’t impinge. But if they see pretty much the same thing popping up here and there about the town, it is going to sooner or later.
But others will be given something to think about in their own time without anyone getting uptight with them or making them wrong.
And pretty soon someone will be saying to their spouse or friend, “You know I was thinking about this PCR test and how the government’s been pretending it can diagnose cases . . . ”
If enough people did this sort of thing, very casually and stress free and without getting into arguments unless they enjoy arguing, pretty soon our info will be “everywhere”.
This gives shopkeepers and cafe owners and all the other business people hammered by this government something they can do to fight back WITHOUT doing anything unlawful.
Okay, so that is the wild idea for spreading our truth even further and faster.
If it was good enough for Thomas Paine . . .
What do you think?
I’d be perfectly willing to put the wording for a few of these promotional pieces together if anyone wants me to but it doesn’t have to be me. Any writer can do it. All I suggest is, make the message very matter-of-fact and dispassionate.