When This Tree Falls…


   Just like republicans and democrats, anarchists too have many different kinds of ideologies/expectations. I am not yet read enough in anarchism to say what exactly I am, but I know I do not fit in any other category. If I must wear a label, I choose it to be that of a rational anarchist.

   I don’t believe that anyone has a right to anything they didn’t earn, or what was not voluntarily given to them. I know that the world is a mad, irrational place and does not share my belief. I know that no two people are the same, that the only thing that ever unites two or more people is an idea or a belief in something.

   I know the world is mad because I have seen it. You can say what you will about anecdotal evidence, heck, on most days I would agree. But the one fact I can never seem to get away from, is that when a group of people becomes large enough, the group begins to break up because it is made of individuals. The bigger the group, the less common ground there will be. Sure, a group can accomplish more than an individual, but it can only accomplish so much before the immediate need is met. Once met, the underlying need is then built upon, branching into one existential after another. Soon those needs develop branches of their own and so on. This is how the tree of society is built.

   Soon, the initial need is taken for granted. The same energy that was poured into meeting that initial need is redirected to meet the needs of the now. Over time, the fix for the initial need breaks, and this is where the tree begins to die.

   Ignoring the internal decay of the tree, the people put more and more effort into maintaining the now. Because of how widespread their society is and its many distractions, dreams, and real needs, they can no longer afford to find a new tree. Because they spent their entire lives in the tree, they have grown afraid of the ground. Doing the only thing they know how, they begin to realize that the tree is starting to sway more in the breeze. Some times seem worse than others, but there is no denying that the sway increases. In short, the collapse of the tree is inevitable. In spite of this, there are many who believe that there is no end to how far the tree will bend, and that it will never break.

   So you soon have a dead tree with the leaves still turning green. People are forgetful so they stick to what they know – the now – and that just so happens to be the extensive branches they live on.

   Yet, a united society it is. Well, united to some I suppose. If you leave the tree, you are not allowed back in without stiff fines and starting over with nothing. As such, people have stayed in the tree for many generations.

   In the tree they felt fairly safe. The creatures in the surrounding lands could not touch them, for if they tried, then they would throw sharpened sticks at it and drive it away. Yet the land provides what a tree could not, and so they would often venture forth. The more the existential wants grew, the more they would send out 2 parties.  One to trade, harvest, and explore; and the other to defend the first group. Somewhere along the way, the tree people felt themselves so powerful that they could tell all of the other ground dwellers to live as they live because, clearly, anything else is wrong. Only they could be civilized, righteous, and free, and it was up to them to make the whole world just like them. As you would imagine, the ground dwellers grew quite upset but lacked the means to do anything about it.

   The tree people are now in a bind. The ground dwellers are angry with them and their tree is up for now but will fall fairly soon. They can no longer strengthen the root and trunk of the tree with thick branches because the rot and decay have set in. The worst part is the confusion among the tree dwellers. A good 30% say that the tree is fine, and that they can just use more branches to hold it up. They demand that all dwellers give up their branch to support the rotten trunk – the more branches you worked hard to acquire and make use of, the more they want from you.

   Another 30% say that the tree is in trouble, but it is salvageable, and that the ground dwellers will attack in their hour of weakness. They demand that everyone gives up fewer branches than the previously mentioned 30%, but then ask for compliance in order to better defend against the ground dwellers.

   Still another 30% think that tree still has some life left – but in the end a whole new tree will be needed. They look for a new tree that resembles the old one in its early years. In their heads, it was not the tree that was at fault but rather how it was abused. They ask you to only give up very little, and promise the same things they original tree people were founded upon.

   Then you have the final 10%. These are the creative’s, the curious, the hands on, and the never say dies with common sense. They never were content with life in a tree. It was stifling to its limited activities and unlivable because of blanket laws and policies that had long sense extinguished common sense. Even worse is that they know damned well that throughout the ages, that the tree was abusing its power, and that it would one day become the proverbial Titanic. They know that had the original tree been kept, and that people were responsible for their own branches (instead of the tree being responsible for the needs of everyone at the expense of everyone), that it never would have expanded past its natural limits.

   To the final 10% it is maddening. Most of the 10% have lived very active lives that have granted them more experience than most of the rest of the tree who were caught up in their distractions. However, this counts for nothing in terms of education for they are only 10%, and the rest of the tree couldn’t care less about them. Wanting more out of life, they have studied in many fields and in more detail than the rest.  Not being satisfied with common knowledge, they want to know more, and have spent more time in this pursuit than the others ever will.  In short, they are the ones people like when everything goes to hell, but hate on any other day.

   The funny thing is that the tree claims to be united in the idea of freedom. This is somewhat ironic considering it rules over the people that give it life. The people nearest the core of the tree are blissfully unaware of the outside world except for what the tree tells them. Just surrounding the core is another group who pretty much does the menial work for those in the core. They live under less comfortable conditions, but still listen to what the core says. Then you have those who live in the branches between the outskirts of the core and the edge of the tree. They live fairly well, and typically have very little want to know what goes on in the core, or on the edge. The live fairly contently in ignorance of both worlds though they will rarely admit so. Finally, you have those who live on the edges. They know the outside for they see it every day.

   The tree dwellers on the edge feel the sway more than any other group when the core starts to weaken. They start to pay more attention to the core, and notice it’s weakening. At first they try to tell their neighbors in the middle, but those in the middle will call hogwash until the sway gets so bad they can feel it regularly. Only then do they bother to check out what they are told. When this point is reached, the tree begins to die if something is not done.

   But 40% cannot change 60. The core has long since tired of keeping the tree alive to let it grow where it will on its own, and has been slowly taking control of the tree bit by bit in a very slow manner. This slow manner is why the middle dwellers never paid it much mind until it became too big to ignore. As for the group right outside of the core – they never lived that well, so they continue to act as they always have and typically remain subservient to or dependant on the core. At such a point, the middle rallying with the edges could have made all the difference in the world and brought all resources to use to warn those outside the core as to what the core itself was doing and why it was hurting them. Instead, the middle bickered amongst itself, as it was all they knew how to do, effectively splitting them in half. So the crucial point is then passed during the arguing and destruction is imminent.

   And when the tree falls, and it people stand in scattered disarray, a rare point is reached. What now? By this time, all of the ground dwellers are now not only thoroughly angry, but now they have a shot they never had before. They can shake off the burden of the tree they never wanted, for good.

   Throughout this whole time, there was about 5% of the core who were true to the ideals the tree was originally founded for. For most of the tree’s existence, they did everything they possibly could to stop the rest of the core from committing long term suicide on the whole tree and its dwellers. However being only 5% of the core with only 30% or less of society backing their ideals, they have been scoffed, laughed at, ignored, and had their own words twisted so far out of context that they were made to look mad, or even evil. Up until it’s fall, they continuously warned the tree over and over again as to what was coming. Only as the tree began it’s collapse did enough people finally listen to them to grant them the position they needed to reset the whole damn thing.

   Yet people are not servants to long term thought but rather to the here and now. Ten percent see the collapse as a good thing, and honestly believe that once the tree falls, that the ground dwellers will differentiate between them and the other 90% that allowed the mess. Of the 90%, 60% still think that giving the core 5% power will save it. In addition, they all have ignored the words of the core’s 5% that don’t want a tree to live on but want to provide a short term relief while people figure it out on their own. Their end goal is to provide proof that the people can still progress and live a civil life without a core making a tree and forcing them under its branches.

The tree will nonetheless collapse. It has 3 choices now.

  1.  It can try to maintain the failed, corrupt, and power hungry 95% of its core by doing what it has been for as long as they can remember. They will decry it’s actions but ignore it’s underlying policies, thus enabling the fallen core to maintain its power over them. This will be done in the name of protection, fairness, and safety.
  2.  It can try to branch out on it’s own after the tree falls. Those who follow this direction will be meant with conflict, by both the ground dwellers taking advantage of their plight and the remainder of the core who is bound and determined that it will keep it’s power at any cost.
  3. It can give the 5% a shot. The efforts of the 5% (and the sheer fact that the rest of the tree saw fit to put them there) will somewhat slow the anger of the ground dwellers against those in the tree. As such, they will be far less likely to try anything. The 5% will seek to stop interfering in the business of the rest of the ground dwellers, and try to withdrawal all of it’s might back to the original domain of the tree. In addition it will attempt to do what it has always proven itself to do, and attempt to reverse the actions taken by the rest of the core. The ultimate goal will be as stated above: To prove to people that the tree was never needed to begin with. This can only be done with time, and a great amount of effort.

If you haven’t figured it out by now, I am doing something that no self respecting anarchist ever would. I am encouraging others to at least this one time, take some kind of action in getting the liberty lovers into office. Before you go ranting at me consider this:

  1. The faster the change in a society, the more unstable it becomes. Slow change allows for it to be understood, and provides a much more solid foundation.
  2. The faster the expansion, the more unstable it becomes. This goes not just for land and commodities, but for ideals as well.
  3. Without any kind of defenses and left to itself, conditions 1 and 2 will apply, so you’re not getting the freedom you think you are.
  4. Remember that the internet can be your worst enemy – many love to claim it as the savior of freedom, but government has far more control of it than you think. Trust me.

Anyway – that’s just my opinion – and this time it is only that – pure opinion based only on what I know – you can take it or leave it. Yes I can be wrong – would not be the first time, but I highly doubt it.







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