Archive for the ‘institutionalization’ Category

Cutting down the Restaurant Dependency

Posted: July 9, 2014 in abuse, Africa, alternative, Amerikan Empire, aristocrats, Asia, back kitchen, bad attitudes, bars, bartender, bouillon, bourgeoisie, busboys, business ventures, cafes, capitalism, capitalist division of labor, care, cash, cereal and vegetable diet, cheapness, chefs, China, cities, class based diets, class position, clubs, coffee, comfort, community, condiments, conspicuous consumption, consumption, cooks, coops, copping free drinks, corporate, culinary skills, culture, customers, diet, dining ambience, diseases, dishwashers, dives, divide and conquer, eating out, eighteenth-century, elites, elitism, ethnic restaurants, Europe, family run restaurants, fees, feudalism, fine dining, fine foods, fine restaurants, food consumption, food cultures, food idolatry, food markets, food service, food wholesalers, foods, France, French Revolution, fresh foods, freshness, front staff, global capitalism, gluttony, gourmet, Hangzhou, hard drugs, healing, health, health inspectors, hearty diet, herbs, hiding money, high worker turnover, home cooked meals, hospitals, hosts, Ibn Battuta, illegal immigrants, illnesses, inheritance, institutionalization, Jewish merchants, labor, legal theft, local dishes, lower classes, main courses, managers, Marco Polo, maritime spice routes, markets, marks, meat and fish diets, megalopolis, menu, microwaves, money, Muslim merchants, out of town visitors, overpriced drinks, owners, Paris, peasants, petit bourgeoisie, plate presentation, plates, pre-prepared plates, preps, price gouging, private cooks, profit, profiteering, public health, restaurant hells, restaurant options, restaurants, restaurer, reused food scraps, rich and lazy, savage capitalism, scams, sensuality of food, servers, service industry, service industry workers, shared kitchens, sickness, side dishes, slave wages, small business owners, smells, soups, South China Sea, South Seas, spices, staff, stale foods, stalls, stealing, Sung Dynasty, table d'hôte, tastes, taxes, ten course meals, the art of cooking, the rich, the wealthy, thirteenth-century, tips, travelers, traveling, unclean dives, uncleaniness, under the table work, upper classes, veggie cooperatives, waiters, workers, youth hostels
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who will clean the messthe daily menu specialrestaurant_Paris_19erat turds under kitchenHangzhou-Marketpizza and cockaroach

The wonders of feeling served, cared for, and looked after represent some of our greatest life experiences. Even when we are physically ill, good rest and wholesome care help us to achieve that piece of mind and marvelous plateau of comfort. These actions display the gifts of unconditional love and they can eventually lead to true healing.

One of the most brutal aspects inside the culture of modern capitalism has been its perversion of such care. Whether they have the names of ‘health care, culinary centers,’ or ‘festival parks,’ capitalism has mugged and institutionalized the older enchantments of strong familial relations and community bonds into their profit-making enterprises.

These institutions have even gone farther into the crimes of legal theft and profiteering. The occult history of restaurants actually began in China during the 1200s, and for our modern restos, in France during the 1700s.

On a rough day in 1760s Paris, a coarse gentleman was clumping in the thin, narrow, cobblestone and nasty dirt, medieval streets of the city. The season was the beginning of an early winter in late November. The cold air was dead with frost, yet whips of cool wind fury could brutally bite the toughest soldier. He was also walking during the ratty, early morning hours. The sky had possessed an overcast grey muddy tinge that led to more foreboding.

The man wore his black hair in long locks with a tail at the end. He was clothed in an overcoat, a vest, a white blouse shirt, and unlike other wealthier men at the time, had on worker pants, while his long black leather boots covered his lower pant legs. He was of medium height, mostly clean-shaven, except for a permanent stubble on the chin and cheeks, and his face had that look of deep thought mixed with the pains of human suffering. He suffered from a mysterious illness inside his belly, a common ailment for that historical time.

He was actually walking to a ‘restaurant,’ a specialized medical dining hall that would hopefully ‘restaurer,’ or restore his health. There were a few in Paris, and this one was famous for its large spoon and bowl over the front door that advertised its palliative care. In those days, they still didn’t use numbers for specific addresses.

When he finally arrived at the care place, there were already a group of men, women and children sitting at the common table. The common table had the name of ‘table d’hôte,’ or the host’s table. He sat down at the end and already felt a nagging feeling.

The hostess suddenly slammed the large soup containers, hard bread, and salt in the middle of the large wooden, dirty table. The center mass of sick people began to hog the soup for the best choices of boiled chicken scrap, ‘bouillon,’ or broth, and seasonal cooked veggies. The bowl went around the table and so the people at the ends had to deal with what was left over. Eating at these places was often a surprise, since the meals often sat for a long time in large pots over the kitchen fire. Such was the ‘pot luck’ in those days. The tired man ate his food and paid his usual cheap ‘écus’ for the simple fare.

He also noticed some out-of-town travelers from the provinces at the table. The hostess charged them the ‘traveler’ fee, which was more expensive. He felt lucky in that he was a ‘Parisian’ local and knew the going rate. Until this very day, many restaurants are notorious for trying to fleece and legally rob unwary customers and out-of-town visitors.

This type of restaurant lasted until the French Revolution of the 1790s. By the beginning of the nineteenth-century, the 1800s, unemployed cooks that had previously worked for the parasitical ‘aristocrats’ began to advertise their culinary skills. If they had any capital, they could open a ‘restaurant’ for the ‘bourgeoisie,’ or upper class, owner-elites. These elites wanted to taste the exquisite plates from the previous epoch of sensual-gluttonous, aristo dining, represented by ten course meals.

The cooks offered ‘menus,’ or selected plates for the day at fixed prices and at certain eating times of the day. The cook owners cut up the tables to make sure there was greater privacy for the paying diners. Such was the birth of the modern restaurant that still spits out its notoriety.

Fine restaurants have continued to thrive as the ultimate conspicuous show of elitism and consumption. The wealthy elites can eat the ‘fine food,’ and enjoy the restaurant ambience, while they thumb their noses at the lower classes that cannot often afford to dine out.

Restaurants would soon perfect their harsh, capitalist division of labor. First came the owner, then the day-to-day manager, next the hot cook, or main cook, ‘le chef,’ and later, the front staff, waiters and hosts, or ‘serveurs.’ and finally the rest of the back staff – busboys, prep and assistant cold plate cooks – and the lowly dishwasher-general cleaner. But in China, five hundred years earlier, the restaurant existed as the extension of the spice and food market.

During the Sung dynasty in China, around the 1230s, this political dynasty had constructed a new capital and market center called Hangzhou. Hangzhou was not an ordinary city for those times. This megalopolis sold every type of imaginable fish, meat, vegetable and fruit – and most importantly, herbs and spices. Within the massive market, the traveler could find Muslim merchants coming from their routes in Africa and Asia, and even well-traveled Jewish merchant traders resided in the city. Famous world travelers visited the site, such as Marco Polo and Ibn Battuta. The city was also the most populous city in the world with over one million inhabitants.

Within the canal and urban jungle labyrinth of markets, buyers and sellers, the visitor could taste the culinary wonders of the world. The majestic stories were quite famous concerning the beautiful city on the lake and the green hills surrounding it. The wonderful foods, tastes, exotic sights, stalls, markets, herbs, smells, and spices enchanted Europeans accustomed to the harsh medieval cereal, legume and vegetable diet.

European elites began to desire a more refined table and palette, and they also wanted more culinary art diversity and a regular diet of diverse meats and fishes.

Local food preparers in Hangzhou prepared stuffed dumpling delights, and mixed noodle and soup plates. These European elite desires for the gourmet plate led to the colonial sea race in order to find another maritime route to India, China and the South Seas, (or the South China Sea lands of Malays, Siamese, Khmers, Laos, and Annam-Champa, or Vietnam).

Six hundred years later, elite Europeans would become the colonial-imperial curse on the Earth. European elites had idolized the sensuality of food over the healthy and hearty diet of the European peasant. The display of wealth and class power had trumped the warm feeling of family and community around a simple, yet tasty fare.

Our modern restaurant is the sacred symbol of food idolatry, small time savage capitalism and the fraudulent display of class position. The resto ultimately serves the rich and lazy that refuse to cook for themselves. The elites want the culinary arts that come with money, yet they refuse to do the labor. Someone else must labor, and labor mercilessly, in order for the money people to enjoy the experience – and the profiteering.

This vice is especially true for the restaurant owners. They might know a lot about food, and a few might even have worked as chefs before, but their main hankering is for a profit, or taking advantage of the mark, or customer, and the laboring staff. If this means buying cheap, genetically modified wholesale food for consumption, leaving out side dish food in metal canisters with plastic wrap for over a month, charging triple prices for cheap drinks, or even taking half-eaten food scraps and putting them in the general use bins – they will do it. The restaurant owner truly wants to make a profit, not feed humanity out of love.

Some restaurant owners have never done kitchen work in their lives. They simply inherited the joint from their parents, or as small time capitalists, they went into restaurant work because they thought that the money would come quickly and easily. They often hire their friends and buddies from previous business ventures, and who also know very little about food and drinks, to manage the dives. Woe unto the service workers that have to deal with these restaurant hells. If the city health inspectors really did their jobs, they would close those rancid places down.

US Restaurants often attract the most vicious, petty, mean, and cheap bosses from the small business owner class, or the petit bourgeoisie. Due to the heavy use of cash, the restaurant racket, like construction, can easily hide the underground economy, or ‘under the table’ money, from the government. In America, the owners can get away with paying a slave wage to the front staff, since the marks, or the customers, are partly required to pay the servers’ wages through ‘tips.’

Also in America, restaurants like construction, hotels and cleaning services, are the mainstays in hiring illegal immigrant workers, In restaurants, they all tend to work and stay hidden in the back kitchen. If the kitchen workers complain, then a call to the Immigration Service will suffice. I have even seen with my own eyes, Latino-mestizo workers from Mexico, Honduras and El Salvador doing the hot cooking in varied ethnic restaurants, such as Indian, Japanese, French, Ethiopian and Thai places!

I have my own personal work stories. When I was younger, I only worked in the back kitchen as a dishwasher for the desperation of needed travel money. I usual bolted when I had made enough cash, or the managers just fired me for religiously taking my breaks. I noticed that many of the young cooks were serious hard drug addicts and a few even sold hard drugs from the back doors.

The waitresses also acted nasty and rude. There were some serious infighting and petty hatreds between the cooks, hosts and servers. The restaurant boss had successfully used the old divide and conquer strategy. No wonder coffee was always free to the wage and tip slaves. Worker turnover was always high.

The workers often counterattacked by making deals with the bartender, including sleeping with him or her, in order to cop free drinks – after the lazy owner went AWOL from the job. The cooks stole copious amounts of food for their own late night deep-frying. The petty and pathetic servers with bad attitudes even made fun of the regular customers to the other staff, who generally ordered their usual meals and drinks – and yet tipped those assholes well.

Some Anarchists counter the anti-restaurant arguments by arguing in favor of vegan-cooperative ventures, or small, family owned restaurants and ethnic food enclaves. But these restaurant options suffer from the same diseases of capitalism – making more money.

If all restaurants use funny money, than they have to make some base profit in order to survive. In family ethnic restaurants the bosses are still bosses and often demand that all the workers share their tips with the owner, which is one of the last holdouts of feudalism. In order for alternative coops to make money, they have to cut corners too, and especially with food freshness. Vegetarian-vegan hipster cooperatives are often the worst abusers of reusing old breads, rice, millet and quinoa, and nuking pre-prepared plates, often made a few days ago, inside of their multiple microwaves – so much for freshness.

If a regular customer that likes to go out to eat and could see inside the actual kitchens and operations of restaurants, then he or she would refrain from visiting them regularly. The real issue, and especially for us Anarchists, is not succumbing to the vicious culture of global capitalism. We continue to pay the servers through our tips in order to help a cheap small business owner make a profit.

We could do the cooking labor at our homes, or at someone else’s house where the fare is often better than the resto variety. At least we know the freshness content of the food we are using. Cooking is also an art, and it is open to all of us humans, since we all do art in some form. Eating out is quite expensive too.

In our contemporary world, we cannot simply avoid restaurants and ban them completely from our lives. But we can cherish those special visits and occasions at our local eating place with family and friends and during festivities.

For those of us that travel, we often have no choice in the matter. If we are in a foreign country, then we would also want to try the local dishes. Youth hostels offer a good option for travelers since most of them have shared kitchens for guests.

We should always remember that the modern restaurant began as an informal medical place for the sick. If we are alive and still healthy, then let’s control our own food consumption and share the cooking within our own families and among our own small, friendly communities.

 

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The Amerikan Empire VII: Bad Education through Dirty Social Control

Posted: March 31, 2014 in alcohol, American populace, Amerikan Empire, Amerikan school system, authority, bad education, big business, Big City Amerika, boredom, brainwashing, brutality, bureaucracy, capitalism, charges, children, citizens, class war, closed down factories, college dormitories, college educated, college preparatory academies, community, construction contracts, control, cops, corporatism, corruption, counterinsurgency, cover-ups, cowardice, crime, criminal enterprise, criminals, cruelty, culture, displacement of the poor, divide and conquer, doctoral programs, donut cops, DUI, economic collapses, educated workforce, elites, empire, family, favoritism and privileges, fear and paranoia, fees, fines, forced coercive schooling, ghettos, government handouts, graduate school, graduate students, gulag, harsh laws, hegemony, hierarchy, history, homelessness, horrible salaries, humanity, ideological supports, imprisonment, indoctrination, inmates, institutional drones, institutional violence, institutionalization, intellectual foundations, interlocking boards of elites, iron cage, Ivy League universities, jail, legal codification, legal immunity, legal miasma, legal privileges, legal violence, legitimacy, mandatory schooling, media manipulation, mind control, monopoly, municipal taxes, pacification, parenting, PhD, political methods, politics, power elite, practice, principals, prison gulag, prisons, production, professors, propaganda, public school system, public service, public tax money, public workers, punishments and favors, racial divide, rebellions, rewrite the laws, rituals, Rockefellers, rule, sacred state rituals, sanctions, school administrators, school system, security culture, selective justice, shootings, slave patrols, slaves, snitches, social control, social parasites, state apparatus, state bureaucrats, state coercion, state officials, state theater, staying power, stealing, struggle, students, subject populations, subsidized businesses, tactics, taxes, teachers, the American flag, the public, the State, thieves, titles, traditions, tuition gouging, TV propaganda, two-tired justice system, tyranny, tyrants, underemployment, United States, United States Government, universities, university campus, university donut cop forces, US government War on Drugs, video surveillance, violence, wage slavery, welfare, working class
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irocker001p1Univ. of Alabama president's plantation houseUS univerity campus copsanti-mobbing US universityschool bullying01n/27/arve/G1914/017
After twelve years of living overseas in Europe, vagabonding and traveling around the world, I decided to return to the Amerikan school system. I wanted to get the top degree as a historian, a PhD. Yet, I always hated the Amerikan system of ‘education.’ Like most people in the country, most of my Amerikan schooling experiences were quite negative.

I had thought that studying for a PhD, or a useless doctorate degree, would signify a totally different experience. I would be able to read what I wanted, and study various themes and topics that interested me. I could write passionately about what truly fascinated me related to historical stuff. I could then become a professor too.

I finally did receive my longed for PhD six years later – but I was terribly wrong. I was good at history, but common sense kicked me in the butt. The rot of the education system had even infected the deadbeat world of Amerikan university graduate school.

From daycare-head start, nursery ‘schools’ to the doctoral program schools in Amerikan universities, bad education reigns through dirty social control. The main culprit represents the mandatory and compulsory state ‘public’ school. The Amerikan forced and coerced schooling system exists solely for training obedient, institutionalized slaves. The elites wanted, and have continued to want, mental cowards that follow orders throughout their bad employment careers. The Amerikan school system currently runs like a minimum security jail system confined within the bureaucratic iron cage.

I’ll never forget my first few weeks on the Amerikan university campus after being out of the ‘school system’ for over ten years. The university charged and extorted students for almost everything that they needed on campus. There were counseling fees, student bookstore fees, student union fess, building fees, computer resource fees, etcetera, and even teaching grad students had to pay for tuition.

In the Amerikan Empire, the state, inclusive of federal, state and city governments, normally tax the citizens incessantly. However, the Amerikan university had perfected this art of taxation, charges and fines, which possessed even greater reach than the state – since tuition costs rose by the rate of inflation times twenty each year.

The university also had a long list of fees and sanctions that required continual outlays of payments, such as parking fees, for both cars and bicycles, late registration fines, drinking alcohol on campus fines, skateboarding fines, and the poor undergrads that lived in the dorms had it worse. Their lives were exactly like prisoners in minimum security jails. They had to inform the security staff when both leaving and arriving in the buildings. Any minor room infraction could land them serious fines, ending up homeless – or even arrested by the campus donut brigade.

I was really shocked when I saw one peculiar ‘innovation.’ The university had a full-fledged and legal, autonomous police force, with its very own detective and jail, cops openly carried semi-automatic guns, high-powered shotguns, and the unit had an armored vehicle with drug sniffing dogs. These cops were often young and hard-core. They regularly rode and walked around the campus looking to harass and bust both unwary students and strangers that ventured on the campus spaces.

While the cops kept the campus on lockdown, surveillance cameras were prevalent everywhere. It wasn’t as bad as a casino or a prison, but it came close. The vigilance cameras were in the hallways, library bookcase areas, and they even faced the front doors of restrooms.

A terrible ambience of fear and distrust pervaded the entire university campus community. The university bosses or administrators managed the whole operation from the top down. The Regents or Trustees possessed the legal management of the university, so they appointed the president. The president next appointed his or her own assistants, and in turn, they appointed the provosts, vice provosts and the other campus directorships. Meanwhile, the provosts appointed the deans and the assistant deans, and the deans appointed their assistants. Almost none of these six figure salaried administrators, and in the case of the president, millionaires, taught classes. They generally attended meetings and passed e-mails to each other.

The administrative chiefs often delegated the heavy university workload, innocuously called service requirements, onto the tenured professor managers. These administrators could dismiss any worker or terminate any job position at will – even if the victim had tenure.

This American university system resembled the old Communist Central Committees of Eastern Europe, or the old Corporations run by the family juntas of the Rockefellers and the Vanderbilts at the turn of the century. The top directors also referred to ‘their university’ as a not-for-profit corporations. The irony apparently escaped them.

The tenured professor managers were quite disappointing as both workers and people. They often acted in a cowardly manner. They never argued with the administrators, and never fought back against most university injustices. The few who did fight back, ended up fired. Most tenured university professors transformed themselves into institutional drones.

Most of them had already transformed themselves into servile workers through faithfully attending the Amerikan Empire school system.

The worst of the bunch were the other graduate students. I had thought that my fellow students would emerge as intellectual colleagues where deep discussions on history, culture and politics were commonplace. The opposite was true. With so little money at the bottom of the pyramid and with most of us gaining horrible salaries at the poverty level, every other graduate student was a competitor for the meager amounts of available money. Hatred ruled inside of those tiny and claustrophobic grad student offices.

The hatred and anger seethed at all levels on the campus. Administrators often blew their tops against recalcitrant professors. Some professors went ballistic against grad students. The grad students showed their rage through harshly grading the papers of the undergraduates – who represented the ‘lazy’ students. Yet it was the laziest of the bunch, the administrators, who received the greatest payouts. And from there, the pyramid of tension, hate and control regularly flushed down into the university cesspool.

I began to hear other horrible stories and legends. A tenured, professor-pervert got away with his sexual indiscretions due to his ability to garner outside grant money for the university, i.e., the administration. The uni donut cops managed a corrupt practice of busting drivers around the campus at night for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol, (DUI) money; meanwhile, some of those same cops would get drunk and then receive free rides home. University administrators would physically threaten attorneys, coaches and professors that refused to bend to their wills.

I also heard about some departments where cowardly professor bullies formed mob actions against their non-conformist colleagues. The university environment functioned under some of the worst institutionalized behavior in the education industry. Only the Amerikan prison gulag or the US Post Office seemed worse off – and yet, I had voluntarily entered this sick world.

I stayed on for six years longer until I received my PhD. I had no where else to go. I was good at history, reading and writing. But I paid a serious price for my desperate and stubborn will to continue and finish graduate school. I too fell victim to the pettiness, the competitive meanness, the nasty envy, and worst of all, the frustrated anger. Yet, I prided myself in resisting such institutional vices. It took me four years after receiving my PhD to fully heal my mind from such a harsh ‘educational’ experience.

After reaching the long sought doctoral degree, I then realized something even more sinister – the Amerikan university had become a rotten extension of the Amerikan high school, which in turn, birthed itself out of the infernal concoction of Amerikan forced schooling, or ‘the public school system.’

The mandatory public school system was actually a recent historical phenomenon. About a hundred years ago in the USA, few people attended the local public schools. Kids might attend a local school-house, but the school was completely autonomous, under a schoolmaster or even a local teacher. Most children attended for a few years, but it often ended when they had to work at their parent’s businesses, farms or small ranches. Children mainly learned their life and work skills from their parents.

At about the same time, Amerika’s elite business capos, such as the Rockefellers, began to lobby the state governments for forced, mandatory schooling. They wanted a more ‘disciplined’ workforce, and so they united with German Empire trained, public intellectuals, such as John Dewey, to set up ‘school boards,’ ‘child labor laws,’ and ‘teacher colleges.’ The Amerikan federal and state apparatuses supported this school system because they watched the spectacular military power of the German Empire, or the Second Reich, which had compulsory state schooling. Other world empires, had also utilized this successful school model, such as the French Empire and the British Empire.

By the 1920s, most US states had some form of mandatory public school law, which gave states the legal right to take away parents’ kids, and hold them against their wills for a good party of the day. The elites however, such as the Rockefellers, never sent their kids to those obligatory public schools; instead, their sons, and eventually, daughters too, attended elite college preparatory private schools, and afterwards, attended the ivy league, elite universities.

The requisite state, Amerikan public schools had more administrators than teachers. They often sat in offices, never taught, and received great salaries, benefits and severance pay packages. Under them were the ‘education leaders,’ or principals, who also made very good money.

In order to earn a little money, I did some substitute teaching at some local public schools. During my period breaks, I overheard teachers recounting some outrageous stories of corrupt Board of Education bosses, often coming into the main office for a few hours and then leaving for the rest of the day. And these bosses made six figure salaries! At the same time, most of the teachers that I saw in the teacher’s lounge seemed tired, worn out, weird and their pay was average. The teachers did most of the work, since the principals never really taught any classes.

Working as a substitute also pained me to view the poor children harassed, categorized and ordered around by the school authorities. Bullying was rampant and the violence between students often exploded into nasty fights. The corporate media liars always blamed school violence on bad kids, bad parents and bad teachers. But I saw first hand that it was the institutional violence of enforced schooling, which had started this nefarious cycle.

The school system of the Amerikan Empire did teach a few reading and math skills. Most importantly however, those schools also taught more deceitful lessons.

The compulsory schooling scam has taught children about their low place in the social hierarchy, and how in order to ‘stay afloat in the world,’ the good student must lie, tolerate boredom, elicit favors, and maintain a false, hypocritical public persona.

The Amerikan state school has represented the most impressive institution for maintaining social control. As long as the Amerikan Empire continually murders and vomits out its casualties across this planet, this disguised jail system for children, adolescents and young adults, will rip apart and destroy its own sad victims.

History shall condemn such a monstruous institution clothed in the black robes of ideological deceit, or ‘educational policy.’ Compulsory State Education has forced millions of parents, under the terrible threats of the State, to hand over their own children for mind and personality mutilation.