If you would like to read the entire series of e-mails from Michiel, you might suggest to him that he consider turning them into a book. He can be reached via his e-zine, ArcoCarib.Just One More Revolution
Guest Blogger Michiel Bijkerk, Netherlands Antilles
A man on a "balsa" (a makeshift raft used to flee Cuba) is detained by the ever-vigilant Cuban police. "Where did you come from?" they ask him. "Venezuela," he answers. "I'm escaping from socialism," he adds. "But, my friend, this is Cuba!" they point out. "I know," he answers, "but here it's ending, in Venezuela it's just beginning!"
This joke is circulating in the streets of Havana. It proves that a joke can be an effective "Satyagrahic" tool, i.e., a tool to bring about social change peacefully.
The Goal Kelso Gave Us
Wasn't the First World War the "war to end all wars"? That didn't really turn out that way, now did it? So, why the title "Just One More Revolution"? Well, because it's going to take another revolution to change from scarcity-thinking to abundance-thinking.
The ultimate cause of most, if not all, wars (with the possible exception of religious wars) has been our fixation on scarcity, the fear that if "we" don't dominate or eliminate "them," they'll take away or threaten our livelihood. Perhaps the greatest legacy of Louis Kelso will be the understanding implicit in his writings that scarcity does not conform to natural law. Jesus pointed it out, too, when he miraculously multiplied loaves and fishes. But it took a Kelso to make this insight comprehensible to modern man in economic terms.
Wrong comparison? Okay. But there it is. There is no need for scarcity-thinking; in the universe there is abundance. We just need to extract and apply its secrets and scarcity vanishes miraculously. And this will lead to Peace. Obviously, science and the Industrial Revolution were the necessary first steps to move away from scarcity. We now have enough knowledge to produce and provide for all. And that abundantly. This is the goal Kelso gave us, i.e., to achieve Peace through social and economic Justice, made possible by moving away from scarcity-thinking. We just need one more Revolution to turn ourselves around and realize it.
The Method Gandhi Gave Us
But there is a problem. Revolutions are bloody. How can one possibly believe that a bloody revolution will bring Peace? How about: "One more Revolution to end all revolutions"? The temptation is there. But if Peace through social and economic Justice is the goal, it clearly can't be done that way. Jesus pointed this out, too. He even went one step further and commanded us to love one another as He had loved us. But, how could this "love" ever achieve any change at all, let alone Revolutionary change? It took a Gandhi to show us how. He turned Jesus's impossible injunction into an intelligible and effective method. He called it "Satyagraha," literally the "Pursuit of Truth." This emphatically includes speaking truth to authority, which the Cubans find so hard to do.
In other words: Yes, we do need one more Revolution. But this time it has to be a Revolution of Peace. Kelso gave us the goal; Gandhi the method. There is no other way. We have to stand between two snarling dogs, known by the names of Capitalism and Socialism, and make them see that there is no need to fight over one bone. There are enough bones for all. And this we have to do using Satyagrahic methods only.
Now, each situation is different. Cuba is not Poland, nor Tibet or India. Specific methods for Cuba have to be invented. We do not know at this time how. But as has been shown, even a simple joke can be effective. We have to be creative.
Coincidences and Synchronistic Superstition
The final stretch of road from Santa Fé to Nueva Paz is long and straight. We reached it on the 38th day of our march, each day reflecting on one year of the Cuban Revolution. At the end of this long straight stretch, the road turns left. To reach Nueva Paz from there, one has to first cross a bridge (viaduct). This we did on the last (50th) day of our march, reaching Nueva Paz's central plaza around 11 a.m.
Now, it's pure coincidence, of course, that Cuba "crossed the bridge" and allowed Juanes and Bosé to organize their "Peace Concert" in the Plaza de la Revolución during the 50th year of the Revolution. To cross this bridge the government had to first make a left turn. The reader will remember that in Cuba "left" means one favors political change.
Again, it's pure coincidence, of course, that we organized our march, calling for Peace through social and economic Justice, reaching Nueva Paz in the same 50th year of the Revolution. However, allow us the hope to believe that Cuba is signaling to the world it wants Peace. And allow us the superstition that our march ending in Nueva Paz is a sign that this New Peace will be through social and economic justice, the way we have outlined in this series of 50 articles.
While walking along the road from Santa Fé to Nueva Paz, many times we could hear horses' hooves approach us from behind. Horse-drawn carts are still in common use in Cuba. Now, according to the Greek philosopher Zeno, the horses could never overtake us. For as soon as a horse would have reached us, we would have moved forward a bit. And when the horse would have reached us there, we would again have moved forward a bit. Et cetera ad infinitum. The horse would forever draw nearer, but never overtake us. But in fact they always did. "Pure illusion," Zeno would say, for his impeccable reasoning showed it was impossible.
We believe that Kelso and his successors have clearly shown that binary economic theory, as outlined in this series of articles with special focus on Cuba, is sound. We cannot see any flaw in its reasoning. It has been analyzed, debated and adapted, where necessary, for over 50 years by hundreds of brilliant minds. Some practical experience in the U.S.A. (applying no more than 20% of the theory) has not brought any major mistakes to light. And no one has ever been able to point out where the theory is flawed, nor why it would fail in practice.
However, Zeno's reasoning is equally impeccable. Yet common experience proves him wrong. The truth is that no theory can ever be relied upon until it has been thoroughly tested in practice and proved right. Therefore, if Cuba should feel uncertain about adopting a basically unproven theory wholesale, we suggest it try out binary economics on the "Isla de la Juventud" first. If it works there as expected, the rest of Cuba can follow. The immediate advantages of making peace with the U.S., as well as the theory's Promise itself, more than justify trying this experiment. We have no doubt it will surpass all