i have some difficulty with authority

I had to go to the Department of Homeland Security to get a stamp in my passport. It was one of those bitter cold rainy days. The security guard wouldn’t let me in until the family ahead of me was through the metal detector; then when he did let me in, he and his colleague laughed about the family and ostentatiously sprayed air freshener where they had been.

I said nothing. I shrank into myself and didn’t make eye contact.

I remember when the DHS logo was introduced, so it still looks fictional to me:

It scares me all the same.

A week later we had a work meeting about our health care options. There’s a Bush-era plan that lets young, rich and healthy people opt out of the general pool of employees, thus lowering their own health care costs at everyone else’s expense.

I was listening to the agent explain the plan, but I was also listening to the Republican talking points he had complacently absorbed, very much against his own self-interest; and I was simultaneously translating those Republican talking points into my own Marxist deconstruction of them.

I’ve been doing this a lot lately. It’s exhausting and disturbing. I lost my temper and walked out.

My difficulty with authority is that the older I get and the more experience I have with it, the harder it is to ignore the essential violence of the plutocratic state.

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