By know you know that Sean Swain believes in political violence, whichever way you want to define it. But, after reading this twelve page deposition to the courts, in which he attempts to convince the deluded hierarchs at the federal district court house to stop believing in civilization and other hierarchical nonsense (using poetry no less) you just may suspect he believes in writing as well.
Check it out:
Full text after the jump…
Dear Mr. Kerger:
My communications have been blocked completely. I am now receiving mail that is postmarked about 3 weeks ago.
The pretext that prison officials used to block my phone and take my JP4 for 30 days was that my June 11th statement constituted a threat. You will recall,I found a precedent where the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a “conditional”is not a threat. What I wrote was a conditional ( “If they torture us….”), and therefore, I am not being punished for speech the Supreme Court has settled to be protected speech.
But beyond that, prison officials have shut down all of my communication. Recall, their story all along is that they specifically target only my violative speech ( what they assert to be violative), not attempting to silence me. Now that is out the window. Not only do they block all of my communications, but they seized the JP4 of 2 other prisoners who were continuing communication with Ben Turk and later with Colleen. Thus, their goal is to perfectly block all of my communications and render me completely silent, even by breaking their own rules and, without so much as an explanation, seizing the communication devices of other prisoners.
Keep in mind, the “punishment” imposed was that I cannot use the phone nor can I use my JP4. My JP4 device was taken from me, precluding my use of it. The punishments did not include Not communicating to the outside world. So, clearly, prison officials are expanding even beyond the punishment that their pretextual conduct report provides.
Additionally, without cause, they are blocking all communication to Ben Turk. Essentially, they are doing exactly what they have denied their designs had been since the beginning: targeting, isolating, and pulling the plug on seanswain.org. They are now openly seeking to control the discourse in the public forum by amputating protected speech.
At the same time, we are in a brave new world. Prison officials intransigence in providing me a modicum of justice has led to an escalation of conflict that now involves developments that neither prison officials nor I can control. The posting of Judge Pearson’s address signals a new era, where free world people who empathize with my struggle are able to take action in a way they believe will assist me in my struggle, and do so without my consultation. This means there is no way for me or for prison officials to determine what will occur next. There is no way to predict.
So, in light of these developments, it appears that prison officials are heightening the tensions and engaging in further provocations, blocking Ben’s visits and increasing the repression on my communications mediums, as well as other prisoners’. It would appear that prison officials are blatantly attempting to create an even more serious crisis rather than reasonably meet the minimum expectations that we have offered as a resolution to the entire situation.
As a witness to how this situation has already unfolded, and contemplating how this may evolve in the future, I believe this is the one decent opportunity we may have to get this ordeal behind us. As I set forth in my declaration, which follows, resolution can be achieved very easily. All we have asked for is (1) expungement of conduct reports from my files, (2) retrospective correction of status reviews since 2012 to determine appropriate security level, absent the false guilty findings.(3) transfer to the appropriate security level, (4) resumption of my communications mediums without further interference(which would include Ben’s visitor status and communications as well, and (5) enrollment in programs so I can earn a parole.
Those expectations will never change. As we have discussed, these are not points for the beginning of negotiation but are, instead, the minimum bottom line we expect to be met.
Thank you for your time and kind consideration.
Transcription thanks to en.contrainfo.espiv.net
In the State of Ohio
In the County of Scioto
I, Sean Swain, being duly sworn according to law, hereby depose to state:
1. I am competent to testify to the facts related herein, to which I have direct knowledge.
2. I write this declaration for filing in a pending civil rights action, as it appears that defendant prison officials are going to great lengths, including the creation of crises, in order to prevent my personal appearance before the federal court, a personal appearance that would ultimately expose the false characterizations of me that defendant prison officials have fostered in my absence.
On My Writing
3. I am a writer. I have always been a writer. When asked in school what I wanted to be, my answer was that I wanted to be what I already was: A writer. I stuttered as a child and as a consequence of that, I became painfully shy and very quiet. I was terrified to speak, for fear of ridicule. It is not easy to be different as a child. But, I could write. I could communicate on paper without stuttering, and I found that I was as good at it as anyone else—better than most, in fact.
4. When I eventually outgrew my stutter, I was still a stutterer on the inside. I always felt somewhat alien, different, and my writing became a refuge of sorts.
5. In high school, I ended up on the school paper—by accident. Paul Rogers was the school newspaper’s advisor, and he was also the owner of the local paper. Rogers was going to law school at the time to become a First Amendment lawyer. He became my mentor.
6. Paul Rogers taught that good journalism is “something to offend everyone.” It was the duty of the writer to challenge conventional thinking, to push people out of their intellectual comfort zones. I remember a poster over the desk of the local paper’s editor, featuring the faces of Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, Josef Stalin, and the Ayatollah K[h]omeini. At the top, it read, “THE EXPERTS AGREE…,” and at the bottom: “…CENSORSHIP WORKS.”
7. Paul Rogers instilled in me the principle that the writer serves a very important role in society. The writer does not keep those in power honest, but instead makes those in power act honestly. That is, everyone wielding power is intent on reducing the population to slavery and tyranny, and it is only the eternal vigilance of the writer, acting as a check on that tyranny, that keeps any population free. The writer works in defense of human liberty against tyranny.
8. This orientation informed how I viewed my place in the world. My identity as a writer is inextricably tied to this principle, and it matters not where I am located, whether inside a prison or out. I am a writer. I often attempt to explain this by telling people that I am not this way because I am a writer; I am a writer because I AM this way.
9. I have been imprisoned since 1991. I am not an inmate or an offender or a criminal or a prisoner. I am a writer, a writer who happens to be in prison. The fact of my imprisonment, for me, is a matter of geography; I am on one side of a fence rather than the other. This in no way impacts who I am or what I do.
10. Raul Rogers also insisted that I learn the First Amendment. It was his firm belief that a writer had a duty to know the legal limits of his craft. As a consequence, Paul Rogers forced me to take and pass tests related to the First Amendment that he himself took in law school. As a consequence, at the age of 16, I could describe all of the limits of free speech and the exceptions to free speech, and the standards of review for those exceptions.
11. Upon coming to prison, before writing anything for publication, I applied what I knew of the First Amendment to determine the limits of prisoner protected speech, and how prisoner speech protections differed from persons in the free world, particularly related to political speech in a public forum. Given my predisposition and inability to compromise on matters of principle, and given the fact that those in power never appreciate writers, I fully anticipated that I would earn the animosity of my captors. I expected this. As a consequence, I made a particular effort to be rule-abiding in every way possible. I did this not because I necessarily agree with the rules or with the regimen or with the larger program that the rules serve, but I did so in a concerted effort to deprive my captors of easy excuses to subject me to punishments and thereby encroach on my ability to communicate. In other words, knowing that prison officials would want to “stick it to me,” I did not want to make the process of “sticking it to me” a justifiable one.
12. In school, teachers on several occasions wanted to accelerate me through to a higher grade. By the process proposed to my parents, I would have graduated at age 13. My mom refused to accelerate me, as school also involved social learning which is best done when children are with others of their same age. But, at any rate, by the testing conducted at that time, and by the testing conducted by the U.S. military later, I was told that my I.Q. is approximately 137. Also, every Minnesota Multi-Phasic Personality Inventory Test I have ever taken demonstrates that I am “normal” in all scales, indicating I do not suffer from any kind of psychological dysfunction. I apply my intellect and reason to being meticulous about abiding by all prison rules and malting sure my writing and other communication conforms to the strict standards of First Amendment protection. Again, I do this not because I appreciate or agree with my captors, but to deprive them of legitimate cause to “get me.”
13. I do not conform to U.S. Supreme Court precedents related to prisoner speech because I believe the Supreme Court “got it right,” or because I think those limits to be the appropriate limits of free speech. I do it because I am a writer, and writers write; and for me to continue writing, to continue speaking truth to power, to continue doing what I believe to be an important job that is a benefit to the social order, I cannot allow my captors, my adversaries, my enemies, the excuse to shut down my communications. So, it is in this light that my conformity to the First Amendment must be absolute at all times.
My Writing in Prison
14. In the 1990s, I wrote reports for Catholic Justice Fellowship which prompted the Ohio Catholic Conference to support parole reform legislation. I was Secretary of Catholic Justice Fellowship until it was forcibly disbanded by the ODRC [Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction] for its effective lobbying and outreach. I was a member of the Advisory Board for Citi[z]ens United for the Rehabilitation of Errants, and my writings appeared regularly in their newsletter, “Against All Odds.” In 2002, I was personally honored by Rosa Parks, who nominated me for placement on the Wall of Tolerance for my peace work in prison.
15. While I was subject to irregular treatment, it was not until 2008 that prison officials directly targeted my writings and subjected me to disciplinary action explicitly for writing. In that instance, prison officials targeted my writings and attributed to me a passage that appears nowhere in my writings, alleging that this passage (that I did not write) equated with encouraging a work stoppage. The written work in question, FREEDOM, now appears online at seanswain.org.
16. Prison officials attempted to send me to supermaximum security for writing a passage that provably appears nowhere in my writings. I was subjected instead to irregular conditions in segregation for 70 days.
17. In 2009, when my writings went online at seanswain.org, I was irregularly placed on the prison “gang” list. Later, in 2012, prison officials subjected me to torture as punishment for my writing of an article that exposed the illegality of JPay policy. In their first story, prison officials admitted to targeting me for what amounts to protected speech until I retained counsel, at which time prison officials then un-admitted what they had already admitted. After torturing me, my captors sent me to Ohio’s super-maximum security prison, alleging no less than six times that I was “violent,” despite any reference to a single act of violence.
18. I contend that “torture” is violence.
19. After I went to the supermax, friends invited me to participate in The Final Straw radio show, where I provide a five-minute segment, weekly. Prison officials then blocked my phone communication and thereby blocked my participation in the radio show for 8 weeks. Afterward, prison officials attempted to justify this obstruction by claiming that I engaged in three (3) instances of misconduct, all of which provably never occurred, and none of which were in any way related to phone use, while my radio segments were.
20. Upon learning of a YouTube project that I planned, prison officials blocked my video visits. In a court hearing, prison officials alleged that I engaged in misconduct for which, in reality, I had never been so much as accused, and prison officials misrepresented the video visit feature in several determinative ways in order to get the court to affirm prison officials’ ban on my video visits.
21. Beginning May 5, 2015, all of my outgoing communication was blocked. I was later accused of rule violations which are not supported by the facts presented in the conduct report. I was found guilty of a non-existent “threat” as justification to block all of my communications indefinitely.
22. I have experienced a pattern of prison officials falsely accusing me of non-existent “violence” and non-existent “threats” in order to justify blocking my communications. The speech that prison officials target de facto conforms to all U.S. Supreme Court conditions for First Amendment protections. As a consequence of these abuses, prison officials, now with the approval of the federal courts, abuse their authority to make me cease to exist as a social being beyond prison walls. I am, in a social sense, being forced out of existence. This is a kind of social assassination. As I am a writer, and as writers write, being forced to silence is, in essence, being forced out of existence. A writer who no longer writes, who can no longer transmit writings to others, is a non-being.
23. I am a writer. I do not know how to be anything else. Despite my meticulous adherence to all U.S. Supreme Court precedents regarding protected speech, I am silenced anyway. That silence appears to be permanent.
24. As prison officials’ targeting of my writing is now partly justified by the targeting of my “ideology,” I believe it is important for me to also address what my ideology is, in some detail, so that I may disspell the mischaracterizations put forward by prison official defendants.
25. My “ideology,” or, more accurately, what prison officials perceive my “ideology” to be, has been the central crux of state agents’ efforts to target and silence my communication. As point of fact, I do not believe that I possess an “ideology”—at least, not in the way an ideology is most commonly understood.
26. At one time, I possessed an “ideology.” When, in the 1990s, when I was a self-identifying liberal democrat, or later, a socialist, I viewed the world through a specific prism of ideas, and I had the tendency of forcing the reality I viewed to conform to the ideas, rather than modifying my thinking to conform to the reality I faced. I then possessed an ideology, a prism of ideas that influenced how I understood the world.
27. I have· since abandoned systems of “belief,” or ideologies. I now accept as fact that which I cannot disprove. I approach questions of social and political organization in the same way I would approach other things of importance. I accept that gravity is true, for instance; and I accept that the earth is round rather than flat. I accept the earth revolves around the sun. These are truths I cannot disprove and I must accept them, however it is I may feel about those truths. So, I reveal in the subsections that follow, the “proofs” that I must accept because I cannot disprove them, regarding social and political organization.
28. All modern political ideologies make reference to “freedom.” Most often, the “freedoms” that any given party present are merely a list of priorities to conflict with another party’s priorities of freedoms. In contrast, I find it important to define what freedom is. I borrow the definition presented by Ward Churchill, that freedom is “the absence of external regulation.” In the absence of external regulation, one is “free” to make one’s own choices; there exists no “external” regulator to impose upon the individual. It stands to reason then, that where “external regulation” exists, there is an absence of freedom, and to the degree that external regulation occurs, there is less freedom.
29. I value freedom, the absence of external regulation. I seek freedom. Any compromise of freedom, any acceptance of “external regulation,” results in a state that is not freedom, but a state of varying degrees of slavery.
30. Because freedom and external regulation are opposites, this can be expressed in a kind of graph. We can imagine an absolute point, “freedom, the absence of external regulation,” and also an opposing point, “absolute external regulation, absence of freedom.” These absolute points would then be connected by a line that represents the continuum between these two absolute states:31. By this illustration, “freedom” and “external regulation” are opposites, opposing forces, and the interplay between these opposing forces is represented by the line connecting them. The more freedom and less external regulation, the closer one is to the absolute point of freedom; the less freedom and more external regulation one experiences, the closer one is to the absolute point on the opposite end of the spectrum.
32. This, to me, is not so much an “ideology” as it is a simple truism.
33. Having established this truism, the implications follow: That which “externally regulates” is an external regulator, a thing that regulates that is external to the individual being regulated. To regulate is to govern.
34. Most common, in human affairs, that which we understand as an external regulator we refer to as “government.” It matters not who does the governing or how that authority to govern is established. It can be a shepherd who kills a giant with a slingshot or a peasant who pulls a sword from a rock; the son of an oil magnate appointed by his father’s minions or a community activist promising change and hope. Whoever it is that runs it, and however it is that it operates, that thing that regulates us is called “government.”
35. Revisiting the graph, we can substitute words. Freedom is “the absence of government,” which is an external regulator; the opposite of freedom is “absolute government.” To be regulated is to be governed, and to be free is to experience the absence of external regulation or government. Now, in view of this, we see that freedom and government are opposites, opposing forces. Where government exists, less freedom exists; where freedom exists, there is an absence of government.
36. That political philosophy that advocates for absolute freedom, the absence of external regulation or government, is most-often referred to as “anarchism.” Only an anarchist, one who opposes the existence of government, occupies the absolute extreme, “freedom.” On the opposite end of the spectrum, those who advocate for a complete absence of freedom, the transcendence of government, are called “fascists.” That political construct where the State is central and all human freedoms are subsumed by the existence of the State is called “Fascism.” All other political philosophies, composed of some compromise between the two forces of freedom and government, occupy the continuum between these two extreme points.
37. I accept this to be true, not because of how I feel about this information, but because I am unable to disprove it. I accept the truth of what I have presented here for the same reason I accept gravity, the shape of the earth, and its trajectory around the sun. Freedom and government are opposites. As I seek freedom, as an absolute, for myself and others, I am opposed to the existence of an external regulator, government. I occupy the extreme point, “freedom.” Freedom, then, is my “ideology.” The word “anarchist” is used by the slaves who occupy every point of non-freedom on the spectrum to describe me.
The “Right to Rule”
38. Having established that principle to which I aspire to live, “freedom,” it is necessary to examine whether I have some duty to compromise that position and to accept “government.” In other words, while I aspire to freedom, it may be that I have a duty to accept external regulation whether I want it or not. Just because I occupy a particular position and advocate for it does not mean I am entitled to it.
39. The question then arises as to whether I have a “duty to obey,” and whether or not there exists an external regulator with a “right to rule.” If such a “right to rule” exists, then it implies upon me a “duty to obey,” and despite my own personal preferences for absolute freedom, I am compelled to accept government and its legitimacy.
40. In this, I borrow from the work of Lark[e]n Rose and Lysander Spooner.
41. The question confronts us, whether there exists a “right to rule.” Every imposition of government—external regulation—upon an individual must be predicated by a “right to rule.” In fact, every hierarchical construct must be predicated by a “right to rule.” If those who propose to impose their regulation upon others do not possess a “right to rule,” then those upon whom they intend to impose themselves do not possess a “duty to obey.” In the absence of a “right to rule,” and a “duty to obey,” there is not a situation of legitimate governance occurring where the few give orders to the many, but the situation instead is one of oppression, exploitation, and force. That is, the “legitimacy” of any form of rule is predicated upon the existence of a “right to rule” and absent this “right to rule,” all imposition of government is illegitimate.
42. Again, this is a simple truism, a proof that I cannot disprove, irrelevant to how I feel about it.
43. In human affairs, for a “right to rule” to exist, we must accept that there exists two species of human beings. This is necessary to accept for purposes of establishing a “right to rule,” because we must accept that there exists one specie of human that has the right not only to rule self, but the right to rule others; while, for this rule to occur, we must also accept that there exists a second specie of human, one that cannot rule others, but has also somehow relinquished the right to rule themselves. It is in the distinction between these two species of humans that we find the “right to rule,” exercised by those with the right to rule themselves and others, and the “duty to obey,” exercised by those without the right to rule others or even themselves.
44. Thus, to accept that the “right to rule” exists, and that subjects of a government possess a “duty to obey,” we must accept the existence of two species of human being. There is no other method by which we may reasonably imagine the origins of a “right to rule” or a “duty to obey.”
45. I do not accept that there are two species of human beings because logic and reason militates against such a proposition. Because logic and reason militates against the existence of two species of human, I must accept that humans are all of the same specie—those who assume to command and those who, through vigorous social training contrary to their natures, are persuaded that they possess a duty to obey.
46. For sake of brevity, I will not address all of the potential arguments related to “implied consent” to be ruled, that is, the arguments that those who rule derive their authority to rule from those who consent to be ruled. I have written in more detail elsewhere, including in Ohio, Parts I-III. I will simply point out the logical fallacy behind the very argument that anyone may consent to be ruled:
47. There exist only two situations between one who assumes a “right to rule,” and one who assumes a “duty to obey.” Either the ruler is demanding that the subject perform an act that the subject consents to perform, or the ruler demands that the subject perform an act that the subject does not consent to perform. In the first circumstance, where the subject consents, the subject is not being ruled because there is an absence of compulsion. The subject is doing what the subject chooses to do, and is therefore free to do it. In the second circumstance, the subject is being ruled—compelled to do what the subject does not choose to do—but there is an absence of consent. Therefore, no situation ever arises whereby a subject “consents” to be “ruled.”
48. Logically, no one can “consent” to be “ruled” any more than someone can “consent” to be “raped.” If consent exists, then the situation of being ruled or being raped is not present; and the state of being ruled or being raped only exists in the absence of consent. Thus, no one ever “consents” to be “ruled” or to be “raped.”
49. At any rate, as I aspire to freedom, the absence of external regulation and therefore the absence of government, I do not consent to be ruled, and the votes cast by any others who may “consent” to be “ruled” in no way can force me to relinquish my right to rule myself, absence any external regulator demonstrating a valid “right to rule.”
50. Given this logical, rational argument, anywhere that someone assumes a “right to rule,” and demands that another assume a “duty to obey,” there is an absence of legitimate rule. There is the presence of force, absent legitimacy. Thus, all government is violence.
51. Wherever hierarchical constructs exist, the vast majority are subjugated by a ruling minority that exercises authority it does not legitimately possess, and therefore, where hierarchy exists, a vast majority is subjected to violence and force by a privileged, ruling minority that imposes itself.
52. I know this to be true because I cannot disprove it. I must accept this truism just as I must accept that gravity is real, or that the earth is round, or that the earth revolves around the sun, independent of how I feel about any of those truths.
Specific Critique of U.S. Model of Democracy
53. It should be remembered that I grew up in the United States and that I went to U.S. public schools and was indoctrinated with the same systems of belief as all other children in the United States. I believed in the legitimacy of hierarchy more than most, becoming a Boy Scout and later enlisting in the U.S. Army where I served honorably. When accused of a crime I did not commit, I posted bond and never considered absconding, as I fully accepted the laws and rules imposed upon me, whether I agreed with those laws and rules or not. I was the perfectly law-abiding subject.
54. However, I now recognize that “democracy” of the variety practiced by the United States presents a particular logical fallacy that cannot be reconciled by any hierarch apologies.
55. Despite the logical proofs already provided that advocacy in “freedom” demands advocacy for the complete absence of government, and that there exists no “right to rule,” which then implicates the legitimacy and validity of any hierarchical construct, apologists for hierarchy, for government, would still argue that, as a practical matter, government, whether valid or invalid, is still “necessary.” This “necessity” argument for government is undermined by “American democracy.”
56. The Necessity Argument for government holds that human beings are too selfish and corrupt and incapable to rule themselves, and therefore humans require hierarchical governments, external regulators, in order to inhibit the excesses of humans and impose “order.” Apologists for the Necessity of Government would assert that those like myself who advocate for absolute freedom, the absence of external regulation, the absence of government, are “utopian” to think that humans are capable of self-governance.
57. I stipulate that humans are selfish and corrupt. I do not argue that humans are more capable than Necessity of Government apologists view them. In fact, I believe I take a far more critical view of humans and their corruption and incapacities. It is in this stipulated fact that the Necessity of Government argument fails: Since humans are selfish and corrupt, greedy and incapable, hierarchs assert that “order” is better achieved by placing inordinate power into the hands of selfish, corrupt, greedy, and incapable people, and expecting this small number with inordinate power to “rule” contrary to their own selfishness, corruption, greed, and incapacities.
58. I reject as irrational the argument presented by hierarchs that social order is better established through relinquishing inordinate power to a small group of privileged elite who are selfish, corrupt, greedy, and incapable, and expect them to act otherwise. Since humans are selfish, corrupt, greedy, and incapable, it is in my own interests to rule myself rather than to submit to the rule of another. Therefore, the Necessity of Government argument proves fallacious.
59. However, the American model of democracy serves as further proof that the Necessity of Government argument is fallacious. By the American model, these selfish, corrupt, greedy, incapable humans cannot be trusted to rule themselves. Instead, each of these selfish, corrupt, greedy and incapable humans is provided the opportunity to select their ruler. In other words, those who cannot be trusted to rule themselves can instead be trusted to select their ruler. Therefore, selfish, corrupt, greedy, and incapable people are vested with the authority to choose a selfish, corrupt, greedy, incapable ruler whose views most closely resonate with the selfish, corrupt, greedy, incapable majority. This, to an American hierarch, is the model method for achieving the greatest order. This, to the American hierarch, is the ultimate “freedom,” to choose the eternal regulator that reduces everyone to slavery, absent any legitimate “right to rule.”
60. I must accept what I cannot disprove.
Hierarchy as Pathology
61. My background in academia is based in the social sciences. Based on this orientation, I have come to view belief in hierarchy as a pathology. Hierarchy is a pathology because it is based upon a delusion, a false belief that there exists a right to rule when one provably does not exist. It is maintained through a belief that empowering a minority to rule the majority results in greater order when, in practice, the exact opposite proves true. And, in addition, one of the central tenets of hierarchy is the false belief that “government,” the external regulator, guarantees and protects freedom when, provably, “government” is the inimical force to freedom. Thus, to be a hierarch is to accept as true an entire construct that is false, erroneous, and based on delusions.
62. This pathology called hierarchy is not an innocuous one. It is not benign. Those in the grips of the hierarch delusion do not merely present a lifestyle choice that is questionable or a belief system that will at some later time be ridiculed like the flat-earthers are ridiculed today, but instead present an imminent threat, a clear and present danger to the continuation of life on this planet. In this way, a choice between accepting an anarchic social organization or a hierarchic social organization is not like the choice between Pepsi or Coke, but is the choice between life and death.
The Toxic Character of the Hierarch Delusion
63. The human race globally now confronts an inconvenient truth of “unsustainability.” This “unsustainability,” in a word, implicates that humans cannot keep living as humans are living, that this method of living is devastating the natural environment that sustains human life, and to continue living in this way will lead to the deterioration of the natural environment and the eventual extinction of the human race.
64. From a human perspective, the extinction of the human race is a really bad thing.
65. What the current discourse regarding “unsustainability” is missing, however, is a clear view of the central problem and how to fix it. Consequently, the human race is really only confronting an inconvenient half-truth. We are not able to see the full scope of the problem because we have been trained by our adherence to the hierarch pathology not to see the principle problem. We are, in this sense, ideologically blinded by hierarchy.
66. The danger is, if we are incapable of recognizing the central problem, we are incapable of resolving it. Thus, any response to unsustainability of our way of life will be analogous to rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic to address that ship’s unsustainability as an ocean-going vessel.
67. I present first my conclusion before providing my proofs: To avoid extinction, the human race must abandon hierarchical organization and mass production of food.
Hierarchy and Mass Production of Food
68. Two principle distinctions distinguish life ten thousand years ago from life today. Ten thousand years ago, humans lived as semi-nomadic hunter-gatherers. They did not, as their principle means of subsistence, cultivate their own food. In contrast, today, most of the human race is sustained through a complex distribution system of food that is harvested through mass agriculture. The other distinction is that ten thousand years ago, humans lived in small, localized groups that functioned on consensus, while life today is defined by power structures where the largest concentrations of power exist at the top of pyramid schemes and the largest number of humans reside at the bottom.
69. These systems of mass producing food and hierarchy coincide historically. The first efforts at mass production of food resulted in temporary food surpluses, and these food surpluses required management. As a consequence, sedentary agriculturalists have consistently through history lived in social systems with those who are workers and those who are managers, a system of stratification of wealth and power. In this way, hierarchy is a logical outgrowth of sedentary mass-agriculture. As archaeologists, cultural anthropologists, and other “-ologists,” will assert, sedentary mass-agriculture and hierarchy have emerged hand-in-hand throughout human history.
70. As mass-agriculturalists, we place a value judgment on the events of thousands of years ago when humans abandoned hunter-gathering to settle in one place and grow crops. As mass agriculturalists, we view those events as an improvement, as an historical disjuncture that separates “primitive humans” from “modern humans.” Thus, from the mass-agriculturalist perspective, this departure from semi-nomadic hunter gathering was an “evolution,” not a pathological deviation from a norm.
71. This historical event, the departure from hunter-gathering to sedentary mass-agriculture was not without its unintended consequences. One of those, the temporary food surpluses already discussed, led to the necessity of a managerial “class,” and to specialization.
72. Mass-agriculture’s greatest problem, the problem that confronts us today, lies not in its failure, but in its unfortunate success.
73. The first mass-agriculturalists had no way to know that their experiment in mass-producing their own food would lead to runaway population growth, principally because they were unaware of a fundamental law that governs the growth of populations. That law can be most simply expressed thusly: Food availability determines population size.
74. All living things are composed of food. The more food that is available to an organism, the larger the population of that organism will become. The opposite is also true, the scarcity of food will result in the size of a population to decrease.
75. The world’s first farmers mass-produced food in order to increase the availability of food. That is to say, no farmer goes into farming for the purpose of decreasing the amount of available food. These initial food surpluses resulted in the increase of human population.
76. With a larger population, these first mass-agriculturalists found it necessary to slash-and-burn more space to increase their crop yield. In their thinking, reasonably, it would seem, that the solution to feeding their increased population was to produce more food.
77. Consequently, the first agriculturalists mass produced more food that led to increases in population that prompted them to increase food production. As a result, this departure from hunter-gathering soon found itself expanding and coming into contact with hunter-gatherers, invading areas traditionally occupied by other tribes. This represents, historically, the introduction of invasion and war and genocide as tribal hunter-gatherers were exterminated by the expanding agriculturalist.
78. Without belaboring the specifics, what we are facing is an expansive system of control that wiped out the wide variety of tribal lifestyles that existed in the Neolithic, turning the planet into a plantation, creating competing pyramid-schemes that struggled for geographic spaces to harvest resources, while the vast majority of humans became slaves to the maintenance of the pyramid schemes.
79. Most importantly, for this analysis, in each era the mass-production of food resulted in continuous increases of the human population at an exponential rate. This human population now exceeds 7 billion.
80. This is now the problem that confronts us. The problem is not the failure of mass-producing food, but its incredible success. We have a complex hierarchical construct that sustains this vast production and distribution network of mass-produced food. As a consequence, there is a human population that is exceeding the “carrying capacity” of the planet.
81. Any given portion of land has a “carrying capacity,” a certain quantum of life that the landbase can support. If that carrying capacity is exceeded, the landbase fails and, if adjustments do not occur, that landbase will essentially die. We have witnessed this phenomenon wherever sedentary human life has expanded. Our cities represent “dead zones” where the landbase cannot support life, and therefore resources must be “shipped in” from other places, creating greater burdens upon other landbases.
82. The problem that the human population now faces is global. Humans have, through the increase of population since the advent of mass-producing food, increased the human population at such a rate and in such a way as to eliminate an increasing number of non-humans. That is, in the quantum of life that the planet can hold, humans make up an increasing percentage.
83. I often use as illustration the analogy, a game of musical chairs. In the game of musical chairs that confronts us, more and more humans fill the chairs while other forms of life dwindle and disappear. As this continues, the global, planetary situation becomes more and more precarious, as the forms of life that humans rely upon to be sustained are increasingly disappearing.
84. Humans approach a threshold where our successful mass-production of our own food leads to the extinction of other forms of life on which we depend for our own survival. In other words, we are surviving so well, we are killing ourselves.
85. I am reminded of a tragic character described in a poem by Stephen Crane:
In the desert
I saw a creature, naked, beastial,
Who, squatting upon the ground,
Held his heart in his hands,
And ate of it.
I said, “Is it good, friend?”
“It is bitter—bitter,” he answered;
“But I like it
Because it is bitter
And because it is my heart.”
86. This, to me, is “swivelized man,” sustained through mass-production of food and maintained by the hierarch pathology that creates the systems for distribution of those resources. “Swivelized man” is forced to eat his own heart, to murder the ecology that supports him, in order to survive.
87. There are many swivelized solutions being proposed and employed, all of which are doomed to fail because they do not address the principle problem. Many of these solutions can be condensed into an approach called “going green.” This “going green” approach is not a solution to the problem that confronts us. “Going green” does not in any way serve to “save” the “environment,” but serves instead to extend the life of mass-production and hierarchy. That is, re-cycling bottles and using renewable fuels, etc., permits humans to continue consuming and living in a way that is not sustainable for a longer period of time before reaching a critical threshold. This “going green” approach, failing to address the problem of human population and food production, is analogous to “drinking slower” to “party longer.”
88. Other hierarchs propose development of new forms of energy and new methods for increasing the volume of food produced while minimizing the “footprint” on the landbase. The problem is, such solutions do not currently exist. That makes those kinds of solutions as real as magical beans and faerie dust.
The Foucaultian/Nietzschean Method
89. As Michel Foucault and Friedrich Nietzsche have both proposed, a problem may be analyzed by tracing an undesired consequence back to the critical disjuncture that created that undesired effect. Having located the cause of that undesired effect, it becomes necessary only to determine the determinative conditions that existed prior to that critical disjuncture and find a method for duplicating those conditions, thus eliminating the undesired effect. This is the Foucaultian/Nietzschean approach that I advocate. It amounts to going “back” to the location where we took a “wrong turn,” and correcting course, as opposed to continuing forward into an unknown, employing intended corrections at random.
90. I do not attempt to develop a vision of the future and what it will look like. That is unknowable. I simply propose that if there is to be a future, we must do away with those components to our way of life that are inconsistent with our long-term survival. This means we must abandon mass-production of food and the hierarch delusion that facilitates that mass-production and distribution process globally.
91. To summarize, freedom, the absence of external regulation, and government, external regulation, are opposing forces. Because I advocate for absolute freedom, I oppose government. Further to this analysis, I recognize through logical proofs that there exists no such thing as a “right to rule.” Absent a “right to rule,” no hierarchical construct can claim legitimacy. From an historical perspective, the empowerment of the few to rule the many has never produced better conditions than the absence of government entirely, and could not, as demonstrated through logical proofs. Therefore, hierarchy is a pathology, a system of delusional thought based on accepted tenets that run contrary to observable reality. This pathology has maintained a system of subsistence that, due to its successes, threatens the existence of all life on the planet. This system of subsistence and the hierarchical structures that sustain it must be abandoned for the long-term survival of life on the planet, to include the human race.
92. I believe these facts to be true because they are observably, provably true. I accept these facts in the same way that I accept the existence of gravity, the roundness of the earth, and the earth’s trajectory around the sun. I do not know how to un-know what I know to be true.
93. Continually, my captors equate my understanding of the world with malicious mischief. My captors work tirelessly to block my communications, to target my expression as violative of prison rules, and to equate my articulation of my positions with terrorism. My captors repeatedly equate my communication of reasonable ideas with “violence” and “destruction” and “harassment,” not because my communication in any way exceeds the limits of protected speech set forth by the U.S. Supreme Court, but because my captors are gripped by the hierarch pathology and view any critique of hierarchy as a personal attack.
94. From my view, given what I believe I know, my efforts to articulate my message on multiple media is nothing less than an effort to save the world. Prison officials have vowed to stop me at all costs. I have even been told on multiple occasions that I am “not allowed” to believe what I believe.
95. I do not know how to un-believe what I know to be true. I am reminded of Copernicus and Galileo who were threatened with burning at the stake if they did not recant their claims that the earth was round and revolved around the sun. I know what Old Testament prophets must have felt like, being sawed in half on the temple steps, for example, by the very people they sought to save.
The Current Situation
96. Since 2012 when I was “ideologically” framed as a member of the Army of the 12 Monkeys by untrained corrections staffers who equated my thoughtful critique of the current order with hooliganism, my primary effort has been to get those false accusations expunged from my file so that I may be placed at appropriate security, obtain programs, and earn a parole. In order to accomplish this, I have, by necessity, had to popularize my struggle beyond prison fences. This effort, then, has been targeted by prison officials who again equate my effort to effectively challenge their previous injustices as more malicious mischief. As a result of this dynamic, resulting primarily from prison officials’ stubborn intransigence and my own unwavering commitment for vindication, has escalated a conflict that has now reached a threshold that I predicted it would reach when I presented my account to Trevor Clark in 2013. This situation has now evolved to the point that neither prison officials nor I can predict what will occur next. We now face a scenario where the entire population of the world, potentially, is following the developments in this conflict and have the power to influence its outcome. The latest example of this is the posting of U.S. District Judge Benita Y. Pearson’s home address online, an event that occurred without my involvement.
97. As an observation, it would seem that if there are people who now empathize with my struggle and have access to the address of a federal judge, I must assume that they have the capacity to post other information as well. The availability of that information online increases the potential for further and more serious acts of arson, sabotage, and personal harm. In short, prison officials, in an effort to silence me, now find themselves in direct conflict with a segment of the population.
98. I have, since 2012, presented a reasonable, rational, logical resolution. I have never sought monetary damages for the torture that I experienced. I have never sought any permanent sanctions against prison officials, such as their termination. What I have insisted as a fair resolution is that prison officials restore me, to the extent possible, to the position I would have been in, if not for the 12 Monkey frame-up and the subsequent targeting of my constitutionally-protected communications:
1-Expungement of the conduct reports,
2-Retrospective correction of all status reviews since 2012, in order to adjust me to the appropriate security level,
3-Transfer to the appropriate security level,
4-Resumption of my communications mediums without further harassment or disruption, and
5-Enrollment in necessary programs for me to earn parole.
99. I believe these expectations to be fair. I firmly believe that, either sooner or later, at the resolution of civil litigation, these expectations will be met. I believe that is inevitable, given that prison officials admitted from the inception of this ordeal that they targeted me for my “ideology” and for being an “anarchist,” and for writings that were, de facto, protected speech. The only question that now confronts us is how far this conflict must unnecessarily escalate, due to prison officials’ intransigence and refusal to admit fault, before this resolution is reached.
100. It is my hope that “cooler heads” will prevail and resolution will be reached quickly.
DECLARANT FURTHER SAYETH NAUGHT.
Sean Swain, Declarant
Lucasville, OH 45699
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Write to Sean:
Sean Swain, 243-205
P. O. Box 45699, 1724 St. Rt. 728, Lucasville, Ohio 45699 (USA)