“Occupy” Yourself

Protesters "Occupy Portland", my home town

I empathize with these people. I really do. They’ve lost jobs, homes, their entire way of life is being turned on its head. They’re looking for someone to blame. They’re looking for their government to fix it. Like small children at their mothers knees, staring up wide eyed, begging for some sort of relief from the reality of the situation. A situation they never believed could happen in the USA, a situation that they had no part in creating.

They have every right to be angry, and they have every right to be extremely vocal about their anger. In short, I believe they have every right to protest for as long as they want to.

But it won’t solve a damn thing.

It won’t help them find employment, it won’t help them avoid foreclosure, it won’t erase their debt, it won’t pay for their education, and it won’t put food on their table.

Many, if not most, of these people still don’t even understand the real cause of the problem. If they really did, they wouldn’t be protesting, they’d be working their damnedest to undermine the system.  Those few protesters that do have an understanding of the underlying causes of the global economic crisis we’re facing are still trying to combat the problem by appealing to the very people responsible for it! They still believe in the illusion.

So when I see what is happening in cities across the US, I am sad. I’m not surprised. I’ve known this day was coming for many years, and I know it will only get worse from here (continued inflation, more unemployment, food shortages, riots, rising crime, government crackdowns, curfews, and war, war, war). But knowing a terrible thing and actually seeing it come to pass are completely different. I am saddened by what I see. Because I know that so many will suffer needlessly.

Why do I say they will suffer needlessly? Because instead of preparing themselves for what is coming, they are clinging defiantly to the hope that politicians can save them—that if they just get the “right guy” in office, if they could just get this policy or that regulation passed, everything will change. They are still trying to bend the spoon.

They will fail.

But there is a way out of this mess. And it doesn’t involve global or nationwide top-down plans. It doesn’t involve political “Job Creation” schemes, or financial reform, tax reform, or any of that. All that is needed is for people to look to themselves, to form their own support networks, trade and work for each other, outside the system. The more people do this the weaker the illusion becomes, until the Counter-Economy eclipses the State-Economy and it finally loses all power over us and collapses. Then we will have a new world.

Just Occupy Yourself

It won’t be a perfect world for certain. But at least it will be free.

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8 Responses to “Occupy” Yourself

  1. ted says:

    Excellent post. There’s a huge difference between effecting change, and doing something whose actual outcome is making you feeling like you’re doing something. No matter what the seas are doing, ultimately it is me that has my hand on the rudder of my life.

    I agree with you and with the points Ken Elwood made in a recent post. My wife and I too are about to make our own return to Japan, find some land, and opt out…


  2. brodoland says:

    Good move Ted! And good luck to you and your wife. I wish you all the best in your future move!


  3. kenelwood says:

    Hi Brodo, Great theme: “Occupy yourself”. It reminds me to be more mindful of where I live, who I am, how I live and why I live. It reminds me to continue to protest myself everyday.

    Ted, excellent !



  4. learnandgrow says:

    “Occupy yourself”. What a fantastic idea, Brodo. But if you are coming to Japan with the ideal of “opting out”, my, you’ll be in for a rude shock.

    *Playing* the system *whilst* occupying oneself *until* one can opt out is the only way you’ll be able to keep your wife and kids by your side.

    Just my tuppeneth, like. It ain’t Utopia over here, despite the pics…

    All the best,



    • brodoland says:

      T – I know what you’re saying and I hear you. I’m not trying to “opt out” in the sense I think you might mean. I am opting in… to something different. Something a little more balanced.

      And I will occupy myself for sure, probably in more ways than I can imagine.


      • learnandgrow says:

        Nooow I get where you’re coming from, Brodo. Opting out of one thing and opting into another. Cool. Gotcha.

        Good luck finding the balance. It is, after all, what we’re all trying to do.

        Wishing you and your kin all of the very best,



  5. ted says:


    I’ll be opting out of a system that isn’t working for me. Totally talking small picture here, speaking simply for myself. I lived 15 years, most of my adult life, in Japan. Most of my contacts–business or otherwise–are in Japan. The majority of my translation and writing gigs are in Japan. Over the past year and a half, my wife and I found that our skills and experience are simply not marketable here. Where they might be marketable are not places that we want to live. We’ve been working far harder, far longer, with less money and quality of life than we had. So, again, this system is not working for us.

    We aren’t naive. I lived 12 of my years in the Japanese countryside; my wife was raised there. We know the difficulties we’ll face. But we also know without doubt that we’ll do far better than we are now. It won’t take much to resuscitate certain work-related aspects to our previous life there.
    On top of that, we’ll simplify our needs as a means of finding a better relationship to things big picture-wise. Not so unlike you, and Ken, and others all striving to create the same thing.


  6. learnandgrow says:

    Ted, your and Brodo’s backstories are different kettles of fish. With 12 years in-country, and with the business contacts (maintained) during that time, you’re in a far stronger position to position yourself as to Where You Want To Go. Brodo’s got a start – a good start, with supportive exended family. But I feel from this particular post, he doesn’t understand the rules yet.

    Fekk me, I sound old. Apologies to you both.




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