On Leaders -- self-appointed and otherwise:

They see about as much as an ant crawling at the edge of a bleeding athlete's foot patch between the toes of Helen of Troy. Those who define, categorize, limit, and assume they know it all, are just fucking themselves and pointing accusingly at lovers.

They make their wars and then hire social moralists to point fingers and fix the blame. No good. They say they'll end the wars they started but they don't and they lie when they get caught. People who start wars don't end them. Wars end by attrition. Or by love. Who has enough love to end it?

Wars end themselves. When the sheep stare at the body-garbage, at all the blood and bones, when enough young men are buried alive in pieces of their friends and their recent enemies and can NOT see any difference between the two. When enough people see their own entrails hanging over their belts, dragging on the ground in the mold. When enough mothers have cried and enough fathers have felt despair and enough children wander around the bomb holes, orphaned.

And they they'll all build their power games and put down war until it suits them again. And then the next war starts with gasps of surprise and alarm from the power freaks. And then they get all solemn and consecrate the remains. So sweet and sad. And then they lie and make speeches about how they never wanted a war, no, not them, when all they did was lay low until people forgot. "We must stop the tide!" ... of people who might have some power instead of US.

All the old men who eat hot dogs and beg for votes, and all the stupid old men who make decisions -- let them fight their own fucking wars. At least in the Crusades, the leaders went along and took some risks. Now all they do is sit around in leather bars and talk about casualty rates. All that technology has done has allowed cowards to become leaders.

All the generals and captains and privates and mothers and fathers and industrialists and unions and labor leaders and peace marchers and writers and artists all own the wars. No one is innocent.

If you motherfuckers want a war so goddamn much then fight each other and let us be. GET OUT OF OUR LIVES! Congress and Parliament and the UN and NATO and Presidium and every country-game fucker in the world ... get some axes and wail on each other. And if all the politicians in the world killed each other off that would be the first war that ever did anybody any good ... think about what you've done and what you're doing and what you do for POWER and if you want to put bullets anywhere but through your own useless brains.

From Mandrake's Book
by Howard Pearlstein,
John Muir Publications, 1974


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