They’re after us. Every state is broke and every city is broke and the way they can bring in revenue is with speeding tickets and parking tickets. I was going 61 in a 50 mph zone somewhere near Athol, Mass. — I had left Providence a few hours earlier- with a parking ticket attached to my windshield. The parking ticket was issued after a ticket machine failed me– yes, put a note on the car, ran into library for two minutes to return a video. Back out to car – my note gone, ticket issued. Need to get to court by 8 am but am now in Vermont. The days of governmental clarity are over. You are guilty from the moment you wake up in the morning until you collapse at night– just trying to live simply and carefully. No. They’re after us. The credit card companies, the meter maids, the corner deli, where a cup of coffee is suddenly $1.30 up from $1.12 — seems like a little thing in and of itself but multiple, multiply — a sea of desperate business owners, cities, states, countries. They will gouge you mercilessly. They are drowning and they are grabbing at you in subversive, mini-small ways.
Suddenly, you’re broke, too. You consider gouging to get by. And the whole mess explodes into an underbellied world of rip-offs. We all go down together.
I wonder what happens to us if we refuse to participate. There is no debtor’s prison. What if we all refuse to pay our parking tickets? I refused many years ago, in Newport, RI– and they towed my car away. I owed 23,000 dollars and could not pay, so they smashed my car into a piece of metal the size of a toaster oven.
You can’t get water from a stone and that is our strength, as struggling beings in a police state. So far, they cannot waterboard us to extract payment. So much has been stolen from so many of us and we are the majority. Our strength comes from our collective weakness. When we foreclose, the house of cards collapses. When the squirrels stop running in the cages and the machine stops moving forward, entropy ensues, and as I said – we all go down together.
The meter maids, the policemen, the deli owner, the man who shingles the roof– the 2 bucks they add to the invoices, the notes they ignore on the windshields, will bring the whole thing down.