Growing Number of Insane People

From the classic article, “Depressed, Insane and Emotionally Fucked-Up”

There are a growing number of insane people these days. More and more people in industrial societies such as the one in which we live are committing suicide and abusing mind-altering drugs. More and more people are getting prescriptions for anti-depressant medications. More and more people are going on murderous shooting sprees in high schools, churches, offices, and fast-food restaurants. Why? Are these people just suffering from some sort of hormonal imbalance? Are they genetic deviants? Natural born fuck-ups? Or did their parents just raise them improperly? Why are more and more people depressed, insane, or otherwise emotionally fucked-up?

The excuses are lies. The widespread cynicism and emotional distress exhibited by the members of this society cannot be blamed on a genetic flaw. Geneticists hope to get rich some day by “curing” insanity (social deviance) with Frankenstein-like genetic engineering technology. Psychologists and the author’s of New Age self-help books make money convincing people that the victims are responsible for their own misery. “Focus on the good things in life,” they say– the positive aspects of your pathetic job and meaningless existence as a wage-slave. After all, you are still alive, right? Bullshit. The source of the mass of our suffering is external. Our misery grows from living in a divided, deeply alienating world– a world of virtual reality and spiritual poverty– where profits are more important than people and nature is disregarded– where technological “progress” rolls on triumphantly, and any form of (real) community was demolished long ago.

People are in denial. They are too scared to acknowledge the true source of this society’s rampant “insanity”. Most people have been coerced and manipulated into a state of what anarchist political prisoner, Rob ‘los Ricos’ Thaxton*, calls “imposed imbecility”. The institutions of the state and capital enforce this. Schools, prisons, work, the military, the police, social service programs, and the corporate mass media all contribute to this incredible brain-washing scheme. They force us to depend upon them. They tell us that the way we live today is the best way to live. They tell us that we have reached the pinnacle of human existence– the height of civilization. They tell us that there is no alternative. We must obey. Those who refuse are insane.

But who is really insane? Those deemed so by the state? The “hyperactive” child who would rather play in the sun and grass than sit still in a desk all day listening to her stuffy teacher lecture about math and grammar? The “insubordinate” factory worker who despises his job on the assembly line, and longs to be appreciated as more than a mere appendage of a soul-less machine? No. The truly insane are those who conform to this sickening society without questioning its’ deep-rooted oppression. Those who seek nothing more from life than the monotony of their daily routines. Those who have so deeply internalized the feelings of alienation inflicted upon them by this society, that they have come to accept these feelings as their own. Those who believe resistance to be futile, and even undesirable. The “hard worker”, the “good student”, the “rehabilitated criminal”, the “model citizen”: these are this society’s true nutcases.

In reality, those often labeled “insane” or “depressed” are some of the only sane people left in this world. It makes sense that a growing number of people feel dissatisfied with school, or work, or with their lives in general. Freedom is being stolen from us. We may not understand it intellectually, but we can feel it. We feel lonely, incomplete, unfulfilled. Meaningful social relationships and interactions with the natural world are becoming extinct– as the Prison Industrial Complex of the Soul extinguishes them. Sane people do not feel comfortable with this. They express their discontent in various subtle and not-so-subtle ways. Maybe some day the remaining sane people will decide to collectively rebel against and overthrow this insane social order. Maybe some day people live in a world where a deep sanity, rooted in a love of the Earth and humanity, will flourish wildly…

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