LETTER: A 988,000 lb Revolution


Jacob Luxemburg submits this letter regarding the predatory Massanutten Public Service Corporation based in McGaheysville, Virginia as they price-gouge residents with water bills


If what I share here seems inappropriately over-wrought, I hope that you will bear with me out of kindness.  Too many of us have been too cooperative for too long. 

There is really no way to respond to the onslaught of private equity against the working class other than with the abrasive clarity and grim resolution of the watchman who witnesses and warns of four horsemen approaching his beloved fat somnolent city to wreak its final catastrophe.  In such cases, more than a little drama is to be expected. Embrace the intensity – and listen.

I have reached the age at which, for some of us, prudence no longer seems prudent – particularly in light of the existential danger looming over organized human life. 

The only work for which I remain able to justify any expenditure of energy on my part is that which might make a meaningful impact in what I believe has become a war to the death between honest working people and the lying grifters by whom and for whom capitalism was designed – inhumane petty tyrants that profit by human want and suffering.

I have invested many hours in pursuit of justice for the harm done to our community by Utilities Incorporated (UI), its parent company CORIX (ultimately headquartered in British Columbia), and Massanutten Public Service Corporation (MPSC, the shell company through which CORIX most likely launders its money.) 

This gigantic multinational has privatized and commodified the universal human right of access to water. This is ultimately part of a much larger global struggle. The same conglomerate also owns substantial interest in fossil fuel infrastructure, who we fight to keep their oil in the ground and their pipelines out of our ecosystem.

Whether or not we win battles like these will determine whether or not our children, and their children, are consigned to lives of want, suffering and violence in the relatively near future – if not in our lifetime.

Every time I pay a $200 water bill, $150 of that represents profits which will be reinvested into projects that will inevitably result in the trampling of human rights, and the utter rape and pillage of the non-human world.

Rather than being revered and honored in its role as Life-Giver, our water is indentured to the service of an imaginary and Satanic “free market”.  Free market economics is nothing but the obscene pursuit of an unobtainable fantasy. 

Wealth does not leave the abysmal coffers of intergenerational inheritance to mercifully trickle down to the masses like a generous gift from the gods of capital. When they have finished extracting all of our water, they will come for our air.  This is already happening.

To be an American is to subject ourselves in perpetuity to ruthless exploitation and extraction of our humanity and resources – and we are expected to do so in a calm and orderly fashion.

We pollute and sicken our bodies through mandatory participation in processes, products, and the waste thereof, which impoverish our souls and enrich the inhuman monstrosities we call the powerful elite. 

Private capital is not only killing us but torturing us. “We the People” have been reduced to material roles as producers and consumers. 

We are held hostage to the insatiable “Smaug” of investment capital, and forced literally at gunpoint to participate in our own annihilation. You and I are merely commodities in the eyes of oppressive entities like CORIX – that is, should we choose to accept that arrangement.

I do not accept that arrangement. It isn’t even a choice for me.  God made me without whatever brain-part enables people to keep their silence and mindlessly cooperate with their killers.  I think, instead of being gifted with that type of patriotic insentience, I’ve been sabotaged with a human heart.

I am perpetually indignant at injustice, and sickened by those who revel in their petty privilege. With a clean conscience, they celebrate success as their brothers and sisters across town struggle to exist, needlessly suffer, and die in misery. 

What kind of poison allows so many to enjoy success and satisfaction without regard for the starvation, sickness, torment and death their comfort leaves in its wake? This intoxication cannot emancipate my mind, rendered restless engulfed in the ruthless, malicious lies and endless deceit.  I swim in siloed corn. I swim until I am crushed.

This isn’t just about water bills.  This is about human rights.  Inasmuch as we continue to allow economic and political monopolies to so disabuse us in our homes, we remain complicit, through hopeless helplessness, in the global  genocide being subsidized with our stolen earnings by the profiteers of capital.

We have nothing to lose by assuming the risks of resistance through direct action.  The Devil will never satiate Itself spontaneously and let us live.  

I for one have zero qualms about breaking the laws that land these murderous privateers in the Governors’ Mansions, the White House, and every other place that should be occupied by protectors of the people rather than by amoral ideological automatons. 

These people are stealing our lives and squandering our children’s resources; not only without a second thought, but zealously – with fervor.  We should lose no sleep over sabotaging their processes, destroying their property, and disrupting business-as-usual by any means necessary. We must make the withholding of water unprofitable and untenable for private corporations. 

Start anywhere. Start now.  The infrastructure connects directly to our homes, and it is our human right that it should.  Pipes burn, and they break.  The 988 lbs of gravel you can pour into the hole where your meter is located can do quite a number on the surveillance equipment that lives there. 

A couple of test tubes full of wastewater from the treatment plant could become a game changer in the hands of an ambitious environmental ecologist.  And just think of the impact of 1,000 “customers” not paying their water bills for three months.  It would be impossible for the staff to inspect 1,000 water meters, much less shut them off.  

Plus, they will each be buried under 988 lbs of pea gravel.

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