STRIKE!

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The October issue of Harper's Magazine has an editorial by Garret Keizer (printed in the hole left by Lewis Lapham) titled "Specific Suggestion" and calling for a general strike on this election day, November 6, 2007.

"Of all the various depredations of the Bush regime none has been so thorough as its plundering of hope." Keizer writes in the opening of the piece.

Stop whatever you're doing and go read the rest of it. His remedy for the general despair, rather than twiddling thumbs until November 2008, is: Don't go to work and don't buy anything. If you're frustrated with the war, annoyed that calls for impeachment have gone nowhere, and generally depressed by the Bush administration then let it be known by refusing to engage the cogs that keep the machinery of our "democracy" operating.

"Any strike, whether it happens in a factory, a nation, or a marriage, amounts to a reaffirmation of consent," writes Keizer. "The strikers remind their overlords—and, equally important, themselves—that the seemingly perpetual machinery of daily life has an off switch as well as an on."

It's a beautiful idea, brilliant in its simplicity, and a potentially inspirational reminder that we, as a people, are responsible for our democracy. Of course, I've come across no mentions of this so far in the mainstream media so it's going to require some real grassroots swelling to take off. Some lefty bloggers like DailyKos diarist conchita have picked it up. You should too: Tell your friends! Let's shut it off!