The Next American Revolution
By Michael Albert
EXT. VAST PLAIN - DAY Scrolling collage of photos of interviewees' famous namesakes and of interviewees themselves provides a backdrop for the main title. "RPS - THE NEXT AMERICAN REVOLUTION" "IN A TIME JUST BEYOND TOMORROW, IN A PLACE CLONED FROM OUR OWN, ACTIVISTS OF THE ORGANIZATION REVOLUTIONARY PARTICIPATORY SOCIETY STRUGGLE TO TRANSFORM THE UNITED STATES. "IN THEIR 2044, THEIR SENATOR MALCOLM KING IS ELECTED PRESIDENT OF THE U.S. WITH HIS RUNNING MATE, GOVERNOR CELIA CURIE. THE MAIN STORY, HOWEVER, RESIDES IN THE CONCEIVING, ORGANIZING, DEMONSTRATING, STRIKING, OCCUPYING, AND CREATING DURING THE PRIOR 27 YEARS. "THE JOURNALIST MIGUEL GUEVARA FACILITATES PARTICIPANTS OF THOSE YEARS DESCRIBING THEIR EFFORTS." INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY MIGUEL GUEVARA, 39, a bit scruffy looking, interviews PRESIDENT MALCOLM KING, 59, confident, handsome, an air of calm. MIGUEL GUEVARA Mr. President, what a pleasure to celebrate your victory. How do you feel? MALCOLM KING Elated. Eager. Cautious. But it wasn't my victory. Ideas won. Program won. Vision won. Millions of volunteers and 100 million voters won. MIGUEL GUEVARA Were you surprised? INT. CONVENTION HALL - EVENING King, CELIA CURIE, 51, poised and beautiful, and conventioneers wildly celebrate nomination. MALCOLM KING Thirty years ago, I would have deemed this an impossible dream. But then vision grew. Hope grew. Despair died. Activism flourished. And here we are. Dream then, reality now! INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Your first reactions to the Oval Office? MALCOLM KING I felt unwelcome in a hall of horrors. I prefer having a museum of good deeds so I will redecorate with people's art. The walls will look forward rather than back. MIGUEL GUEVARA And beyond remodeling? MALCOLM KING We will host a constitutional convention to redefine how government works. We will enlarge the Supreme Court to reflect a diverse new society. We will accelerate giving our armed forces socially worthy agendas. We will enact massive prison pardons and wisely renovate jurisprudence. We will massively seek climate redemption and ecological balance. We will legalize all on-going workplace take-overs to urge new equitable, cooperative economics. We will do all that, and more, of course. MIGUEL GUEVARA What about personal goals? MALCOLM KING Keep my head. Honor activists who preceded us. Seek truths. Inspire. MIGUEL GUEVARA You now speak of construction compared to earlier speaking about consciousness raising and contestation. Can you explain? EXT. VIDEO MONTAGE - DAY Scenes of early RPS. MALCOLM KING (V.O.) RPS's early members had beliefs seriously different from their neighbors, schoolmates, workmates, and often even their relatives. To gain allies we had to discuss the differences and raise consciousness. As RPS grew we could seek change. We still raised consciousness, but campaigns, strikes, and occupations became central. In time, we began to create structures for immediate benefit but also as seeds of a better future. We constructed, and now construction is paramount. Activists first chronicled nightmares and envisioned better, then we won modest but escalating gains, and finally we can make desirable dreams reality. MIGUEL GUEVARA (V.O.) Did you enjoy Inauguration Day? EXT. CELEBRATIONS - DAY Views of diverse crowds in many places. MALCOLM KING We knew rebels and rakes, outcasts, the gentle, the kind, the poets and painters, the bricklayers and truck drivers, saints and sinners too, all wanted to attend. History had been so harsh and so unkind for so long that many millions wanted to dance in the streets of our little town. To accommodate, we held events in most counties in the U.S. We celebrated a decades-long struggle. Of course I loved it. EXT. CENTRAL PARK - DAY Miguel Guevara queries JULIET BERKMAN, 49, sedate and confident, walking in park, August 1 2042. MIGUEL GUEVARA Juliet do you remember first becoming radical? JULIET BERKMAN Trump's election exploded my mind. I drank myself sick. A friend restored my focus and before long, I was radical. MIGUEL GUEVARA What were some key events for you? JULIET BERKMAN The first two RPS conventions and the campaign for balanced jobs in 2024, and for the 30-hour work week in 2025, but I also remember a meeting arranged with workers in a defense plant connected with a university where students were opposing military research. I spoke to an assembly of protesting students and defense-involved employees. INT. ASSEMBLY HALL - DAY Audience includes workers dressed for work and student protestors holding signs. YOUNG JULIET BERKMAN, 23, dressed for street battle, speaks. The workers boo her words. YOUNG JULIET BERKMAN War making has to stop. Your war production has to stop. Your war has to stop. All war has to stop. JULIET BERKMAN (V.O.) I threatened the employees' future livelihoods and by the next day I hated myself for having ignored the situations of those I was trying to reach. The workers booed me because I was obnoxious. I had to change. MIGUEL GUEVARA And the second personal event? INT. CHURCH - DAY Respectful Memorial Service. JULIET BERKMAN (V.O.) At a memorial service for sixties civil rights activists, the music and solidarity transported me until I saw in my head past activists risking life and limb. EXT. BIRMINGHAM RALLY - DAY Activists struggle. Then King speech. JULIET BERKMAN (V.O.) The next day I re-read Martin Luther King Jr.'s letter from a Birmingham Jail and his Mountaintop speech. Later, I often repeated his words to myself. "I have heard numerous southern religious leaders admonish their worshipers to comply with a desegregation decision because it is the law, but I have longed to hear white ministers declare: 'Follow this decree because integration is morally right and because the Negro is your brother.'" MIGUEL GUEVARA (V.O.) Juliet, what can you tell us about the first signs of RPS? JULIET BERKMAN I had my first RPS feelings at a Detroit rally for a higher minimum wage and reduced police violence. EXT. DETROIT STREETS FACING A MAKESHIFT STAGE - DAY Lively crowd of a few thousand listen to DETROIT SPEAKER. DETROIT SPEAKER We must raise wages, reduce violence, and gain peace. Class, race, gender, and sexuality - low wages, and police violence, we must create our own new organization to seek all these gains. We must not settle. We must change everything. EXT. CENTRAL PARK - DAY Walking and talking. MIGUEL GUEVARA Surely those weren't new thoughts? JULIET BERKMAN I had heard similar rhetoric, but Detroit felt more real. MIGUEL GUEVARA Many pinpoint the 2021 March of three hundred thousand on Wall Street as their RPS start. Were you there? EXT. MARCH ON WALL STREET - DAY JULIET BERKMAN (V.O.) Yes, I was there. In fact, I gave a speech called "We Are the Future" Have you heard it? YOUNG JULIET BERKMAN We seek dignity and justice. We won't settle for the periphery of power. We do not oppose impoverished budgets, escalating inequality, resurgent racism, sexual predation, assembly line schools, pharmaceutical drug dealing, corporate profiteering, divisive classism, heinous war, hideous repression, OR planetary climate catastrophe. No, we oppose them all. We don't demand racial solidarity, cultural integrity, gender equity, sexual diversity, political freedom, collective self management, OR economic equity and classlessness. No, we demand them all. EXT. CENTRAL PARK - DAY Sitting on a bench, looking out over pond. JULIET BERKMAN If you told me then that twenty five years later we would be on the verge of transforming society, I would have laughed. A hundred years, okay. Fifty, maybe. Twenty five? No way. MIGUEL GUEVARA Challenging class division has been your personal focus. What was the turning point in seeking classlessness? JULIET BERKMAN I can suggest two early possibilities. INT. AMAZONIA ASSEMBLY PLANT - DAY AMAZONIA WORKER mechanically does her task. Camera pans to more and more workers, doing likewise, then to plant after plant, then to workers sitting, striking. AMAZONIA WORKER We will not move. We will not allow scabs to take our place. We will strike until Amazon meets our demands. JULIET BERKMAN (V.O.) People nationwide were flabbergasted. We had bought our books and goods from Amazon by clicking links seemingly with no humans involved. Almost 300,000 humans, invisible before, sat down to become visible. EXT. AMAZON WAREHOUSE - DAY WORKERS occupy and speak from doorway. SUPPORTERS surround plant and speak from makeshift stage. FAMILIES and FRIENDS bring food and tents. Students bring supplies and buffer against police intervention. POLICE approach. AMAZONIA STRIKE LEADER We are AmazonIA workers. Invade our warehouse and we will ravage it. If need be, we will die at our posts. You enter, we wreck chaos. YOUNG JULIET BERKMAN You can bash us, but we too will not be moved. Like workers inside, we will remain. We are neighbors, students, mail carriers, assemblers. We are lawyers, and doctors. We are off duty cops. We learn, all across the country, from Amazonia's strikers. AMAZONIA STRIKE LEADER Say no to our demands, and we will maintain our occupation and you will lose. Bring on cops to smash us. We will replenish. Issue court orders to scare us. We will scoff. Serve injunctions to restrain us. We will shred them. Arrest us. We will happily enter your jails. Go ahead. Get tough. We will collapse your workplaces. Looks at rows of police. AMAZONIA STRIKE LEADER (CONT'D) Officers, we know you feel responsible to follow your orders. But you have kids. You have lives. You want shorter work hours, better wages, humane conditions. You are our future allies. Bludgeon us. We will talk with you. JULIET BERKMAN (V.O.) Some police began talking with us. Their anger was checked. After a week, United Package Workers stopped delivering. Then National Express workers stopped. Then it was bam. New work hours. Bam. New payment schemes. A second early turning point was new attitudes to work relations. EXT. HARVARD MEDICAL SCHOOL - DAY STUDENTS rally with signs. JULIET BERKMAN (V.O.) There was a campaign to raise the wages of Harvard's kitchen and custodial workers. Activists sought improved conditions for the workers while debating what people's incomes really ought to be. STUDENT DEMONSTRATOR Why should those who tediously clean classrooms earn less than those who comfortably lecture students on how to seek profit? JULIET BERKMAN (V.O.) After dozens of dorm and classroom discussions, work stoppages, teach ins, and repressive administration threats and actions, a group of medical students, some in RPS, began questioning admissions policies, training methods, and the culture of the profession they were supposed to enter. The sentiment mushroomed and there soon emerged Doctors for the People, Lawyers for the People, Accountants for the People, Engineers, Architects, and Faculty for the People. EXT. NYU LAW SCHOOL - DAY Rally hears LAW STUDENT with megaphone. LAW STUDENT We know we have bad habits that operate obstructively. We know we face intense resistance from folks opposing radical change. Still, we seek new relations between each profession and the population. We seek to serve. Lawyers for people not corporations. INT. UNIVERSITY OFFICE - DAY Miguel Guevara queries ANDREJ GOLDMAN, 50, who looks like somewhat nerdish professor. Bookshelves show titles by Goldman. MIGUEL GUEVARA Andrej Goldman, do you remember your radicalization? ANDREJ GOLDMAN In college, I saw economics as a good career choice. I did the equations, pontificated about supply and demand, and moaned about government spending. I knew inflation and tax rates. I didn't know how corporations function. EXT. CAMPUS RALLY - DAY Students rally against global warming. ANDREJ GOLDMAN (V.O.) As a junior, a friend took me to my first demonstration. I admired speakers taking a stand. Their words made sense. Their anger seemed warranted. I watched and respected, but did not join. I worried over that and before long got involved. INT. UNIVERSITY OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Can you tell us what RPS events most affected you? ANDREJ GOLDMAN The 2021 Schools for the People campaign and later the 2027 Amazon strike inspired me. Plant occupations and take overs, and all manner of massive demonstrations and actions moved me. But the early days most got me. INT. HIGH SCHOOL - NIGHT Aroused PARENTS confront school officials in auditorium. PARENT We demand a community center where we can learn and socialize. We want to learn, to share, to progress. We want roses on our tables, not diamonds on our necks. EXT. AMAZONIA ASSEMBLY PLANT - DAY Strikers block access. Supporters rally beyond. STRIKER We demand worthy pay. We demand respect and a say. This is our lives. Who are we? We are workers and we will not move short of winning dignity and income. INT. UNIVERSITY OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA What role did RPS's boycotts play? ANDREJ GOLDMAN I was in college, near Boston, studying abysmal economics, when the Wall Street Rally led to calling boycotts. EXT. WALL STREET RALLY - DAY Throngs listen to RALLY SPEAKER. RALLY SPEAKER All of us, our families, our friends, and everyone we can reach, must stop buying products from the hatemongering producers of the automatic high velocity weapons prevalent in public mass shootings. ANDREJ GOLDMAN (V.O.) This was a few years on the heels of the 2018 massive student demonstrations that began the rollback of gun culture and also propelled so many young people into their first taste of actively seeking change. I didn't myself own a gun and was never going to buy one. To build a gun boycott, activists had to reach gun advocates who disagreed with them. That was a major step, but where I was, we needed a different focus. INT. UNIVERSITY OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. ANDREJ GOLDMAN At MIT, and we went from opposing gun violence to resisting militarizing campus police and opposing all complicity with war. MIGUEL GUEVARA What were the obstacles? ANDREJ GOLDMAN Some students believed there were just wars. U.S. intervention was selfless. Others said MIT ending war research would be budgetary suicide. To win, we had to show the moral failings of militarism, and also how to survive without it. EXT. MIT CAMPUS RALLY - DAY A STUDENT with a bullhorn addresses ADMINISTRATORS looking out at Rally from windows. STUDENT How can you sensibly oppose our calls for greater attention to global warming? How can you sensibly reject focusing research on new energy sources and needed health campaigns? How can you sensibly refute our rejection of weapons research? You can't. EXT. MONTAGE - ACTIONS - DAY Rally at Boston Common, then MIT and Harvard sit-ins, Northeastern and BU Strikes ANDREJ GOLDMAN (V.O.) I worked on teach-ins, organized rallies, and helped picket and occupy labs. Before long, cross campus solidarity provoked citywide demonstrations. Movements began sharing lessons and lending each other support. After two tumultuous years we held a rally culminating in a sit-in at MIT that attracted 30,000 students from all over the Boston area. When even more attended a subsequent rally and sit-in at Harvard, and when Northeastern and Boston University then held simultaneous campus-wide strikes, our confidence soared. INT. UNIVERSITY OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. Now with drinks. MIGUEL GUEVARA What lessons did you take? ANDREJ GOLDMAN Mostly I learned about the mindset of students who balked at joining the effort. I learned why good people put up with and even defend horrible injustices. INT. DORM ROOM - NIGHT YOUNG ANDREJ GOLDMAN 24, scruffy, and STUDENT argue. STUDENT The weapons aren't offensive. They won't be used. We need them to preserve peace. MIGUEL GUEVARA (V.O.) Did you keep your temper hearing that? ANDREJ GOLDMAN (V.O.) Sadly, at first I often got very aggressive, but as we overcame each rationale with evidence, we got more patient and finally reached the heart of the matter. STUDENT Suppose I accept you are right about the facts and ethics of war making. You will nonetheless lose, and losing isn't worth my time. YOUNG ANDREJ GOLDMAN Administrators won't retain war research when doing so will cause students and faculty to close their institutions. STUDENT Perhaps, but even if you eliminate war research here, profiteers will do it elsewhere. Even if you organize lots of resistance in many places, it will come back somewhere and eventually everywhere. You can't stop war. Human nature sucks. Play along and get what you can. Change is impossible. I will not be Don Quixote pushing peace against intractable war just to feel moral. INT. UNIVERSITY OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Young folks acted like worn out old folks? ANDREJ GOLDMAN Though it was severely challenged and shaken in the Sixties, cynicism had retained command. People considered suffering inevitable. We had to reverse that. MIGUEL GUEVARA Did you take other lessons? ANDREJ GOLDMAN We fought to get our universities to stop supporting military agendas only to see schools spin off labs as private corporate firms. It taught us we had to transcend campuses and take on private corporations. First MIT, Stanford, and Cal Tech. Then the spinoffs, NSA, and Boeing. EXT. BOEING CORP. - DAY PICKETERS with signs partially block the entrance and enter conversations with workers. YOUNG ANDREJ GOLDMAN We want war firms like yours to do socially desirable work in place of war work. We want Congress to re assign funds from military to social use. Government could pay your workplace to produce a transit system, schools, and hospitals just like it can pay it to produce a missile system. Your workplace could employ you in either case. So why doesn't it happen? The obstacle is that enlarged social spending establishes the idea that the government ought to benefit the whole population. It insures workers against threats of firing. It empowers workers to win greater gains. Elites prefer war spending because it employs fewer people and avoids empowering workers. You can have a more meaningful job, better conditions, and more pay, and so can all workers, with less or even no war production. MIGUEL GUEVARA Did you take any personal lessons? EXT. UNIVERSITY LAWN - DAY Small group congregates around arguers. Goldman and GUN ADVOCATE argue. ANDREJ GOLDMAN (V.O.) After I gave a public talk at a university in Florida about boycotting military work, I was accosted by a charismatic advocate of open carry. We argued and soon people were tossing in comments. GUN ADVOCATE At any moment some maniac can unholster a gun and start shooting. If most students carry hand guns, even a crazy student hell bent on murder will succumb before doing much harm. YOUNG ANDREJ GOLDMAN But open carry would unleash hysterical fear often escalating moderate disputes into violent catastrophes. GUN ADVOCATE Escalations are unavoidable. Open carry will reduce deaths. ANDREJ GOLDMAN (V.O.) I realized that while the NRA profiteers drove gun policy, many grassroots gun advocates weren't posing a hypothetical. They weren't gun nuts. They felt social corruption was irreversible. Violence was unavoidable. The only defense was a gun of one's own. I couldn't convey that students carrying guns in classes would be horrible for everyone without first establishing that society did not have to be a kill or be killed danger land. INT. MAYOR'S OFFICE - DAY Miguel Guevara interviews MAYOR BILL HAMPTON, 45, looking relaxed but dressed formal, in his office. MIGUEL GUEVARA Bill Hampton, you became an anti racist activist, joined RPS, and later became Mayor of New York City. What got you going? EXT. CHURCH - DAY Police vans visible, police line up in three rows, ten abreast. They face the church entrance. The PASTOR stands atop the Church steps, with 50 CONGREGANTS, and the full CHURCH CHOIR. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) I was at a sanctuary for immigrants slated to be deported. The site was a church in San Antonio, Texas. PASTOR To take our immigrant families, you will have to go through our extended family. You can assault us. You can brutalize our limbs into physical silence and shove our trembling husks aside. You can even kill us. It will not change our minds. If you feel that is warranted, come ahead. Pastor and congregants lock arms. Church doors open revealing rows of congregants who also lock arms. At the pulpit, the sheltered families stand resolute. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) This was our Selma. Our Pettus bridge. Our Birmingham. San Antonio's sheriff was our Bull Connor. He so disrespected anyone who could side with immigrants that he felt a few swings of police batons would open a clear path to the deportees. SHERIFF You have two minutes to vacate. After that, we will vacate you. CHURCH CHOIR We shall not be moved, we shall not be movedÉ Two minutes pass. Sheriff and deputies march into the human barrier striking viciously with their long, scary batons. CHURCH CHOIR (CONT'D) Deep in our hearts we know . . . Officers tromp and batter, congregants grunt and moan, but none scream. Choir sings. More congregants emerge and lock arms. Onlookers are horrified. Congregants reach up and embrace their tormentors. Hugs diminish space for brutal swings. Congregants don't beg but militantly persist. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) After a bit, some deputies relented. Then the sheriff did too. They could have physically demolished us, leaving a battlefield of blasted souls in their wake, but nothing less would take the families, and scorched earth was too much. The Pastor was bloodied and bent, but I can still hear him. PASTOR Leave your batons and guns with your fellow officers outside. Do that, and you are welcome to talk to the immigrant families, to myself, and to others in our space of peace and worship within. Tears flow. Medics aid congregants. Calmly, respectfully, after what seems like an eternity of just standing there staring at the bloodied Pastor, the Sheriff takes off his gun, and walks with the Pastor into the Church. INT. PRESS CONFERENCE - NEXT DAY Sheriff stands before dozens of press. SHERIFF I will no longer recognize federal orders, or any orders at all, to deport immigrants. Drops mic, walks off. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) That was the whole thing. It was the shortest, longest, press conference ever. It was the beginning of the end of the blame the immigrant, beat the immigrant, expel the immigrant, mindset. INT. MAYOR'S OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. BILL HAMPTON Before San Antonio, I hated cops. To me, my family, and my friends, cops spelled danger and even death. The only way to deal with them: fight fire with fire, eye to eye, toe to toe - or run like hell. The sanctuary didn't make me a pacifist, but I saw that non violence plus compassion beat what would have totally demolished any attempt to fight back. Police could sometimes be turned our way. And when they were, the rich and powerful could no longer subdue us. MIGUEL GUEVARA How did RPS program emerge? BILL HAMPTON A little earlier, the Bernie Sanders campaign had program. The Black Lives Matter movement first ignored program but then offered it. The massive women's marches offered program. But dozens of essays addressed Trump's Tweeting for every essay that addressed BLM, Women's, or any program at all. EXT. DEMOS - DAY Video of sanctuaries and demos. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) In response to Trump trying to hugely escalate deportation, activists created local sanctuaries in churches and universities and even in some private homes. INT. CAMPUS CENTER - DAY Campus center provides housing and protection. STUDENT ACTIVIST Our sanctuaries teach and celebrate. If you take our friends, you have to take us. Neither we nor they are going without a fight. EXT. SPORTS STADIUM - DAY On field athletes and immigrants mingle. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) Prominent athletes welcomed immigrants into sports arenas, first on various college campuses, then in the NFL and NBA. That created a mutual aid mindset that had been absent in some other anti Trump activism. It nourished incredible momentum. EXT. FANCY SUBURBAN STREET - DAY Thirty protestors march into a rich neighborhood and cops quickly clear them out. EXT. POOR NEIGHBORHOOD - DAY A large rally in a poor neighborhood collectively marches to an executive's home. It includes hundreds. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) Another effective early choice was our response to war mongering, climate denying, cabinet members. We exposed their views, then proposed progressives for their posts. We rallied where they worked, lived, and worshipped. The cabinet members wanted us driven off, but imagine the impact of gassing their neighborhoods. EXT. POLICE STATION - DAY Group rallies outside police station. Demonstrator addresses police. DEMONSTRATOR We demand better ways to spend funds and changes in police structure, policy, and community oversight and control, including using prisoners to build low income housing funded by military budgets. We invite you into neighborhood and household meetings to discuss how to create safer communities and avoid racist policing. EXT. MILITARY BASE - DAY Group rallies outside military base. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) We went to military bases and police stations and organized. We didn't just condemn and protest. We listened and proposed. We fought but we also made friends. INT. MAYOR'S OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. Hampton, seated, answers. BILL HAMPTON Still, most people's responses to program remained disjointed. A project would latch onto one aim with gusto. Another project would latch onto a different aim with equal gusto. Few strayed from past narrow priorities to embrace full program. Activism occurred in isolated silos. We had to create overarching unity. We turned community centers into meeting places for diverse campaigns. We founded cultural centers. We combined a campaign to end flying immigrants out through a local airport with a campaign to clean up plumes of toxic waste from the same airport. A local progressive candidate would talk at a community center, sign on to a campaign, and get support. Community centers would have evenings where folks from different campaigns would share the stage. Speakers on violence against women appeared with speakers on minimum wage struggles. Activists fighting for prison reform appeared with activists fighting for solar power. RPS hoped that while single issue campaigns would persist, they would each ratify an overarching agenda and support all its components. We wanted to meaningfully share good program so that those who focused most on war would aid those who focused most on immigration would aid those who focused most on global warming, on toxic clean-up, on tax reform, on improving public spaces, on distributing food and medicine, on sexual harassment, on police violence. We wanted a web of mutual aid. MIGUEL GUEVARA Bill, I wonder if you could describe the barriers to successful organizing before RPS? INT. LECTURE HALL - NIGHT YOUNG BILL HAMPTON, 20, confident beyond his years, emotionally addresses a large audience. YOUNG BILL HAMPTON Why have we had so much trouble winning a new society? It is right. It is needed. We fight. We lose. Why? Society debilitates us until we lack strength to fight well. Oppression harms us until we lose our ability to cooperate and be strategic. The roles we occupy each day mold us until we pick up habits that destroy unity and clarity. Sometimes we do oppressive things. Sometimes we are too passive. Defeatism crushes us until we doubt we can win. We lose motivation to seek success. We try to please friends. We try to win something short term. But we ignore long term prospects. Lacking hope, we try to punish opponents or to prove our worth more than we try to win a new system. We find it easier and more pleasurable to talk to people we like. We write for people who already know left jargon. We don't create channels for new recruits to participate effectively. Even when we write or speak accessibly, too often we write or speak only against society. When non leftists read or hear us, they wonder what we are for and why we repeat the same negative things. We are anti-religion, anti-sports, anti-country music, anti-fast food. Our organizations and program reflect professional values more than working class values. Each of our organizations has its own promotion, data base, fundraising, and residence. Our budgets replicate purchasing all that, leaving less for actual work. We are silo-ed. We play at violence. We succumb to liberalism or rail wildly at it. We disdain reforms and denigrate folks who aren't yet radical. You get the idea. We have plenty to fix. But many resist admitting that. Some of you may even feel angry at me for saying it. But listen. The prevalence of problems is actually good news. If everything yesterday was wonderful, how could we do better tomorrow? INT. MAYOR'S OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA It sounds like the left needed lots of psychiatrists. BILL HAMPTON More like collective attention to our baggage. For that, we allotted time for everyone to tell their stories. Everyone listened. Tears happened. People got heard. We saw the full person. We remembered that we each had a lot going on. It generated new levels of respect and connection, and not just based on what people could get done. Admitting and addressing problems, we felt less needy and more present. We were more able to engage because we got seen and heard. We had more compassion for each other and realized our fears weren't ours alone. We stuck to tasks at hand and showed up for each other. And this all mattered even more than great courage or brilliant analysis. MIGUEL GUEVARA I would like to return to violence, if you are willing. You had a confrontation about that at the second convention, is that right? BILL HAMPTON Yes, a group of ex-military proposed we should arm and train to battle directly with police. INT. LARGE ASSEMBLY - DAY Seven RPS members, ex-SOLDIERS, occupy the stage and speak. SOLDIER 1 Rejecting weaponry is cowardly and phony. If we reject weapons, the status quo will inevitably win by force of arms. We cannot win fundamental change unless we overcome state violence. But overcoming state violence requires movement violence. Anyone who says otherwise accepts defeat. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) What made this a problem wasn't that such a view was offered, but the way it was offered. These guys felt marching in, armed with rifles, and taking the stage demonstrated the power of guns. They offered a one-step logic. You are with us, or with the state. YOUNG BILL HAMPTON Stands, gathers a group, walks up onto the stage - addresses the soldiers and then leads them off to talk further. Violence would not only distort our ability to think straight it is the one contest the state wins. We have to disarm state violence by making it ineffective because their using violence against us would generate more dissent. So now what do we do with our disagreement? Are you going to shoot us because we reject your argument? Or would shooting us do your agenda more harm than good? We clearly aren't cowardly and phony. We aren't on the side of the state. But you have the guns. Shoot us, or let's go talk about this further. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) The armed guys revealed that in a group, one guy with a club is a problem. Five guys with guns are a bigger problem. We faced two issues. On the one hand, could we handle police and military violence at local demonstrations? The answer to that was yes, but only by creating situations in which police or military violence would rebound to our benefit, not theirs. The second issue was could we handle motivated infiltrators or confused thuggery coming from our own people - such as these vets? It would be hard if not impossible to make internal violence counterproductive for those doing it if they were beyond reasoning much less if they were actively trying to damage RPS. If the vets with guns had been enemies of RPS, or crazy, things could have gone really badly. And so RPS had to have a means to deal with internal or external craziness or sabotage. Could we address it without corrupting the style and modes of operation of RPS? Could we manage vile situations without our actions harming us more than the situations themselves? We first thought, why not have a few people with the training and experience for handling crazy, violent interlopers. They could be armed and prepared. We decided the decision had to be made by the organization as a whole. We decided we should elect a group who would secretly designate security folks. But what if the security folks themselves became problematic? We decided we shouldn't pick the most macho and military of our members. Experienced folks should train people who were picked based on their patient temperament. We next decided that while our plan made sense, we weren't sure it was really needed. After all, we had completed two conventions and had undertaken countless demonstrations and campaigns, often running up against police and state power without such a special arrangement. Maybe fear of internal lunacy was a bigger problem than such lunacy itself. And it turned out that this cautiousness at undertaking the project was wise. We had the plan ready to propose for a wide discussion and vote, but we decided to hold off until and unless practical evidence suggested it was needed. On the other hand, I and various others around the country quietly worked with folks on how to deal with local intruders, drunks, ideologically intractable folks, infiltrators, and the like. INT. CYNTHIA'S APARTMENT - EVENING Miguel Guevara interviews CYNTHIA PARKS, 50, plain outfit and calm demeanor, and HARRIET LENNON, 42, a bit dressier, a bit less calm. MIGUEL GUEVARA Cynthia Parks, you watched your family lose their modest home due to unemployment. Do you remember first becoming radical? INT. CHILDHOOD HOME - DAY Cops come to evict CYNTHIA PARK'S MOM, and YOUNG CYNTHIA PARKS, 27, similar plain outfit to later life. CYNTHIA PARK'S MOM Cynthia, the economy is in trouble. We don't have money to pay bills. The bank is taking our home. We have to move. YOUNG CYNTHIA PARKS How does that help the economy? CYNTHIA PARKS MOM It helps rich bankers. CYNTHIA PARKS (V.O.) I watched my father sink into alcohol-enhanced depression. I watched my mother protect the family from poverty and my father's illness. I remember ice covering the insides of our windows. By age seven, my life was mapped out, though it was years before I knew what I had become. INT. CYNTHIA'S APARTMENT - EVENING Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Do you remember the start of RPS? CYNTHIA PARKS I mostly remember that initially RPS lacked certainty. Who were we to take on such tasks? Nights of sleepless doubt followed days of fearing error. Too few people had to do too much work. We feared failing so much that we often wouldn't listen and hear others. MIGUEL GUEVARA It was hard recruiting at first? INT. NEIGHBOR'S LIVING ROOM - DAY Cynthia trying to recruit a neighbor. YOUNG CYNTHIA PARKS Come on. Join us in RPS. Fight for better conditions in our building. NEIGHBOR Why should I? You don't stand a chance. Injustice always wins. Anyhow, what could I contribute? How could I matter? I can work to make my family more healthy and fulfilled, but the whole country? The whole world? I can't win that. To deny my kids, my family, just to lose? Not me. CYNTHIA PARKS (V.O.) For her to think that way - was that her fault or was it we who knew better but had not yet made hope compelling and believable? INT. CYNTHIA'S APARTMENT - EVENING Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Harriet, do you remember how you got involved in housing issues? HARRIET LENNON I was in school thinking about social change when I started meeting with friends to discuss ideas. We visited tenants' rights groups and encountered many RPS members, and before long my friends and I joined too. MIGUEL GUEVARA Joining wasn't a major decision? HARRIET LENNON No, we were sitting around talking, and we noted that people we liked were in RPS, so we joined. MIGUEL GUEVARA And then? INT. ORGANIZING TENANTS - DAY Young Harriet Lennon talks with tenants, the POSNERS. HARRIET LENNON (V.O.) Our talks hatched two plans. The first was we would visit an apartment complex, make friends, and hear about issues and problems. Then we would make tentative suggestions and help implement modest gains. YOUNG HARRIET LENNON Would you be interested in swapping apartments with someone from the first floor so you would no longer have to walk up four flights to your flat? MRS. POSNER For two years climbing the stairs has devastated my husband and hurt me too. He worked assembly and his legs are bad. I have tired lungs. It never even occurred to me to see if anyone would make the switch, and no one offered. YOUNG HARRIET LENNON Society twists us so badly that we take isolation for granted. But it turns out, when we mention elderly tenants like you on a high floor, younger tenants on lower floors are willing to swap. INT. CYNTHIA'S APARTMENT - EVENING Interview continues. HARRIET LENNON We reached out to student tenants where one or more were already in RPS. Then we approached families. We offered modesty, engagement, and eager listening. INT. MONTAGE Ð APARTMENT ORGANIZING AND GAINS / DAY Video montage of apartment food coop, day care, laundry, meeting about drugs. HARRIET LENNON (V.O.) Gains residents could themselves enact like painting corridors quickly revealed potential. Once we built trust and excitement, we helped people set up tenants' food co-ops to reduce costs and time spent shopping. We organized collective day care and laundry. People realized sharing could work. We started holding parties and hosting group events. New friendships brightened lives. With still more trust among residents, we began addressing drug use and even sexual harassment and spouse abuse. People publicly talked about personal violations and took steps to reduce them. INT. CYNTHIA'S APARTMENT - EVENING Interview continues. HARRIET LENNON We started wondering how to provide affordable housing non exploitatively. Who would do the work? Why would they do it? With what financing? EXT. DEMOS / DAY Video Montage of RPS members organizing at prison and military bases and in neighborhoods around bases and prisons. YOUNG HARRIET LENNON Instead of learning how to kill or honing advanced criminal skills, why can't soldiers and inmates cooperatively make their own decisions while generating a much needed product? Why can't we transform military bases and prisons to constructing housing? Why not give soldiers and inmates, once they leave the military or prison, first claim on the houses they helped build? Why not give the rest to young or homeless people. INT. CYNTHIA'S APARTMENT - EVENING Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Going a step back, when did you become radical? What caused it? HARRIET LENNON I was 19, in community college, when I first heard various progressive formulations, particularly about racism and global warming. I was sympathetic, but more into music, movies, boys, and social media. One night I was talking with a new friend who turned out to be very radical. INT. COMMUNITY COLLEGE - DORM ROOM Young Harriet Lennon and COLLEGE FRIEND converse. COLLEGE FRIEND So the Wall Street march was great but we obviously need more, including on our campus. YOUNG HARRIET LENNON Come on. That will never happen. COLLEGE FRIEND Why do you assume indignity is permanent? Why do you put all your effort into navigating current circumstances, and none into seeking change? YOUNG HARRIET LENNON I rule out change and take for granted horrible existing relations like I defend scientific theories against lunatic heresy. Your hope is crazy. COLLEGE FRIEND No scientist would assume cancer was incurable at the outset of considering what to do about it. No engineer would assume a bridge couldn't span the Hudson River at the outset of trying to connect cities on either side. You assume failure. Why, unless you desire failure or you fear success? HARRIET LENNON (V.O.) This ate at me. What was my axe to grind? What made me jump to a depressing conclusion? Nothing warranted. I was RPS bound. INT. CYNTHIA'S APARTMENT - EVENING Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Cynthia, what drew you to RPS? CYNTHIA PARKS When my family lost its home I was ten years old. people we knew lost their's too. INT. VIDEO MONTAGE - CYNTHIA VIEWS LIFE ALL AROUND - NIGHT Families of four, five, and more living in one or two room ramshackle apartments, or two or more families living together in a space too small for one family, and families living in cars. Families plunged into anger, despair, alcohol and opioid addiction. CYNTHIA PARKS (V.O.) At times I had rats for roommates I felt incredible tension, saw incredible violence. But then, as I got older, I met folks who devoted themselves to preventing evictions or to helping those who were evicted find new homes. The contrast between housing activists seeking just results and real estate developers, bankers, and police callously carrying out evictions decided my life. INT. CYNTHIA'S APARTMENT - EVENING Interview continues. CYNTHIA PARKS Housing organizing required listening, hearing, and empathizing. It involved raising consciousness, developing skills, and building confidence. We had to pay close attention to the means at hand and to attainable ends. We had to be patient with people, but impatient with institutions. Housing organizing involved activism RPS needed. And what we housing organizers needed back from RPS was a large organization's support. It was a wonderful marriage. MIGUEL GUEVARA But what about personal difficulties becoming radical? Did you fit right off? Or was joining RPS hard? CYNTHIA PARKS Activists I first encountered had lots of education. They were comfortable and confident. They expected people who looked, dressed, and talked like me to defer to them. Luckily for me, some folks tried to not just welcome me but to hear and learn from my ways of interrelating. My connections to self proclaimed redneck activists who used gun culture to reach into rural communities horrified some lefties but it showed others how to move beyond passively enduring class oppression without becoming academicized. INT. GOVERNOR'S OFFICE - DAY Miguel Guevara interviews Governor Celia Curie, n her office. MIGUEL GUEVARA Celia Curie, can you tell us how you first became radical? CELIA CURIE I was raped by my uncle when I was fifteen. I didn't tell anyone. I was afraid and at first I thought it was my fault. My father's brother did it. The fallout of me speaking up would be horrendous for my dad and for my uncle's family. Afterward, I used the internet to learn more about rape. I went deeply into the subject and became indebted to many feminist writers who saved my life and opened my door to radicalism. INT. FILM MONTAGE - DAY Displays misogyny in life, then in films. CELIA CURIE (V.O.) Being raped, watching a loved one killed or jailed, being torn apart by unemployment, alcohol, and drugs, or suffering preventable illness dominates many peoples' early memories. It can cripple for life. It can also educate and inspire. I had difficulty escaping my dark times not least because every year since, I saw reminders. INT. GOVERNOR'S OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Just ten years later RPS was percolating, and soon thereafter, Hollywood RPS got going. Do you remember how it started? INT. ACTOR'S OPULENT LIVING ROOM - DAY Group of actors meet in an enormous ornate living room. One wall is all window overlooking a massive deck with a huge pool. Beyond that floats the Pacific. CELIA CURIE (V.O.) The first Hollywood chapter got going when some actors started to meet face to face to discuss how they could relate to RPS. It was shortly after the first convention and we took a few meetings to settle on joining RPS and undertaking three types of activity. YOUNG CELIA CURIE We should reach out to other people in our artistic communities to join RPS. We should agitate for changes in Hollywood film practices to make our industry better reflect worthy values and aims. We should reach out to the broader population using film and our visibility as actors. CELIA CURIE (V.O.) It started with just eleven people. We got less curious about our fellow actors' sex lives and more curious about ideas. Joining RPS was like deciding to relate to a film by collectively assessing a screenplay. EXT. PARK - DAY Two actors walk and talk. CELIA CURIE (V.O.) We began reaching out to other Hollywood people to join us in RPS. ACTOR Why should I address much I would rather ignore? It would cost time. It would alienate producers. And what would I do, other than talk? YOUNG CELIA CURIE Talking is a lot, but I understand we need to have activities beyond talking you can relate to. So help us come up with some. INT. GOVERNOR'S OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. CELIA CURIE Like everyone, the roles I occupied in society largely determined who I was by the requirements they imposed on me. However, after joining RPS, though the daily pressures of my situations, contracts, and people's expectations still pushed and pulled me, now I was part of RPS and that became who I was at a more basic level than the rest. MIGUEL GUEVARA Didn't obstacles intimidate you? CELIA CURIE I don't know how to explain our reaction to obstacles other than to say it wasn't a time to hesitate. We had to agitate. We had to make the change we wanted. The earlier rise of feminist and anti-racist demands among actors were likely essential to our mindset. At any rate, within a year we began three projects. First, we assembled courses about understanding current society, advocating vision, and addressing possibilities of the film industry. Second, we uncovered and publicized the pay rates of everyone in Hollywood and then agitated for more equitable relations. You can imagine how that went over, but the ethics were clear and with informed persistence we eventually went from our appearing crazy, to those defending old ways appearing greedy. Third, we pressured local media producers to give space and tools to grassroots participants and we created short films and later some full-length ones promoting RPS ideas and program. MIGUEL GUEVARA Do you remember the meeting where you first got together? INT. ACTOR'S OPULENT LIVING ROOM - DAY Eleven ACTORS meet. CELIA CURIE (V.O.) We first got together at a famous actor's house. HOST ACTOR We should do as we have done, hold funding events for candidates. Raise them money. Help them win. YOUNG CELIA CURIE Come on. You know the conditions most people endure overseas and in the U.S. require more than band aids. Just donating won't end global warming, poverty, and war. Society needs a rewrite. INT. GOVERNOR'S OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA What opposition did you face? CELIA CURIE Artists' incredibly elitist egos. INT. MOVIE SET - DAY Young Celia Curie tries to recruit actor. TALL ACTOR We are not like other workers. We should enjoy incomes commensurate to our talent. Balanced jobs shouldn't sap our focus. YOUNG CELIA CURIE A scientist is creative, as are doctors, designers, and builders, not just artists, and with training and new jobs, we could all be creative for part of our work time. Saying that actors, directors, or other art workers shouldn't do balanced work implies that others who do creative work shouldn't either. Twenty percent of the population should do only empowering work and, as a result, eighty percent should do only disempowering work. TALL ACTOR But it would cut into our creativity. Why lose that? YOUNG CELIA CURIE It is true that balancing your circumstances for empowerment will reduce your time for creative work, but having everyone do balanced work will free the potentials of vast new constituencies. TALL ACTOR Perhaps, but it's insane to think the public should plan art. We plan it. The public likes it or not. We know what is creative, what we can do, how we can do it. Negotiating art would mean I do what others decide. That is absurd. That would end art. YOUNG CELIA CURIE No. Workers and consumers self managing doesn't mean the public decides what goes in a novel, play, or film, any more than it means the public decides what research a biologist does, or how an architect designs a building. The public decides, in cooperation with producers, what benefits society. If the public wants no music, creating music wouldn't count as socially valued work. If the public wants little music, the number of musicians would be accordingly low. The same applies if the public wants no novels, no engineering, or no medicine. But the public doesn't have to understand or appreciate every film, painting, song, performance, construction method, or research project to know it wants society to have art, engineering, and science. The public settles on how much it wants, which in turn determines the amount producers can produce for income. Producers then decide what they create and how. TALL ACTOR But still, not everyone is equally creative. Not everyone is equally smart, fast, or strong. We aren't born alike with some of us then repressed. We are born different with some of us then elevated. And that is as it should be. YOUNG CELIA CURIE There are certainly inborn differences and I agree that to say otherwise is absurd. Training matters. Access to education and conditions consistent with confidence matters. But even if I had all that, I wouldn't be the great actor you are, much less a great dancer, runner, surgeon, or physicist. We should enjoy, benefit from, and celebrate great qualities that some have, athletic, artistic, or intellectual. Of course. But your rightly recognizing that virtually all human qualities come in different ranges and patterns in different people, doesn't imply that only a relative few, say a fifth, can do engaging, uplifting, empowering tasks. And the recognition of inborn differences doesn't morally or for the sake of output imply that those lucky in the genetic lottery, having faster reflexes, better sight, quicker calculation, stronger muscles, or whatever else, should on that account be not just involved in good works, but also showered in wealth and power. Even if current injustice and hierarchy - a few riding and most being ridden - had some kind of real measure of talents or strengths or whatever else determining those riding - instead of it overwhelmingly being a result of pressures of hierarchical institutions plus socially distorted motives, plus past power and also luck - it still wouldn't be necessary or just. We can have excellence and have equity. We can have genius, and have participation. That is what RPS is about. Not leveling humanity. Not denying excellence. Finding the best in people, but also treat people fairly, properly, equitably, justly, with all having fair say. INT. GOVERNOR'S OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA How will RPS success alter future artistry? CELIA CURIE The audience for artistic work will grow due to people having more time for enjoyment, appreciation, and inspiration, but artistic workers, like all others, will receive equitable incomes and a fair mix of work in industries that relate to the will of both workers and consumers. Society will admire and celebrate great artists, but it won't excessively enrich them. MIGUEL GUEVARA But will there be as high creativity as now? CELIA CURIE I would guess there will be considerably less outrageous and unreal special effects and parading the exaggerated psyches and mayhem of murderers, but much more creativity. At the same time, high levels of excellent art, though wonderful, will not be our only criteria of judgement. INT. CLASSROOM - DAY Young Celia Curie teaching at actors RPS School YOUNG CELIA CURIE Suppose you are part of a workplace producing shirts. Should you have as your your only aim maximizing the quality and quantity of shirts that come out the door? Many might say yes, but then why not work people to death and dump them in the alley while calling in replacements? Why not produce more shirts than people want? Why not produce only exotic, fancy shirts? It turns out sensible output should take into account those working, those receiving product, and those not receiving other products that could have been produced instead. RPS's cooperative planning recognizes that it's fine if we sometimes seek less output or settle for good output if seeking more or better would impose too much hardship on those involved or take too many resources. But even so, people in each industry will be able to provide more, and the public will be able to benefit more, because the population will have far more of its creative potentials nurtured and supported. BALD ACTOR I still worry about a decline of art, and, yes, also doctoring, engineering, and ecological research. If people who previously only did empowering tasks have to do balanced work, the loss of contributions from them won't be offset by newly cultivated and expressed talents of the 80% of the population who were formerly silenced and subordinated because the 80% lack the needed talent. YOUNG CELIA CURIE Asserting that those who now aren't doing creative work couldn't do it given training and opportunity goes way too far. We can't all do everything. That is true. Nor will we all be geniuses at some particular thing. That too is true. But eighty percent aren't born to be ridden. Not being best or not being in the top fifth, doesn't imply you can't nonetheless contribute effectively. If one hundred children train identically, enjoy, all conditions the same, and then race and your child comes in 21st, 45th, or even 100th, does that mean your child can't run at all, much less can't do other things? Even while answering your concern in its strongest form, I want to be clear that whatever inborn differences we have, the overriding fact is that eighty percent are schooled, repressed, and oppressed into seeming ill equipped for any empowering involvement. Sufficient creativity to participate isn't missing at birth. Society's pliers crush creativity and initiative. It wasn't that long ago that men claimed women couldn't be creative, couldn't doctor, lawyer, or discover. Their argument was, look around, women don't do those things which shows they can't. Same for whites evaluating blacks. They don't, therefore they can't. But it was all nonsense. Women and blacks didn't because they were reviled, excluded, denigrated, denied, crushed, and even killed. Women were half the population, and blacks roughly a tenth. And now you are talking about eighty percent. A worker in a factory isn't Einstein because he can't be, just like I can't be. But the worker doesn't do any engaging, empowering tasks not because he can't but because he has been repressed and excluded while others hoarded benefits and wrongly disparaged him. INT. GOVERNOR'S OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA When you attended your first Hollywood meeting, you weren't yet revolutionary. What brought you the rest of the way? CELIA CURIE The literature I was reading taught me a lot, but organizing in our group was key. We become what we do. When our group jettisoned liberalism, I did too. Thinking about kids also affected me. What should I say to them about right and wrong? Each good answer I offered pushed me as much as them. But I think the main thing was an attitude I first encountered in RPS. It spread slowly, but folks began to disagree without taking for granted they were right. Increasingly RPS members didn't reflexively defend their past views. As often as not, we wanted to be wrong so progress could happen. Our emphasis became learning, not defending what we previously said. If you think about your experiences in arguments and disputes, that's a big deal. Instead of taking pleasure in calling someone wrong and dismissing her by angry assertion, RPS folks learned to want to find what was right even when it meant they were wrong. Conversations could happen. Minds could change. Unity could emerge. This mattered for morale and for progress. MIGUEL GUEVARA Celia, when did you feel the struggle went from trying to build support, to its being assured of victory? EXT. HOLLYWOOD - DAY Actors and others march, meet, and march more widely. CELIA CURIE (V.O.) For me, it was when writers, actors, directors, editors, videographers, designers, drivers, dressers, stunt people, and music people, marched through Hollywood chanting and singing, and then went to neighborhood meetings for conversation at community gatherings. And when we then did it again, and again, in New York, Chicago, Boston, Denver, Houston, Nashville, Memphis, Miami, Atlanta, Seattle, San Francisco, Portland, Detroit, and Cleveland. INT. GOVERNOR'S OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA I hope it is okay if I ask you a personal question about acting and your experiences of it? You have been considered beautiful all your life, and I wonder what place you think this had in the past and should have in the future, too? CELIA CURIE It is personal, but it is fair. Growing up, what you look like had and still has major implications. I was by our society's standards, beautiful. None of us can see that, easily, in ourselves, but I can see it in others. Sometimes a person's beauty can be mesmerizing and even addictive. But in a horribly sexist society there is more to it. At a young age I learned behaviors that could get me things I wanted. I didn't understand why, but I noticed how my smiles or my being flirty affected people. The behaviors became part of who I was. Materially, I benefited. Psychologically, too, because I got confidence and style. But my personality warped and I got mired in feelings of entitlement and guilt. And there was harassment and violation. Hollywood exaggerated such dynamics. Beauty has been bankable for women, and for men too. And what has been bankable has been cultivated and sought, but also thrown out when it fades. Beautiful women and men were signed on and, if you could perform reasonably well and you didn't alienate producers, you would have a career, at least until your looks faded. I don't know entirely how I feel about it. I was eyeballed from my preteens, hit on, and sexually fantasized in many people's daily lives. Even aside from being harassed, think about knowing that thousands and maybe even millions imagine doing things with or to you. You know everyone undervalues everything else you are. Transcending that requires help that is often absent. We should eliminate objectification and exploitation. We should also not reward beauty with wealth. Suppose someone is born really strong, able to run outrageously fast, with great reflexes, or able to think really clearly. RPS says the person should not be able to turn their genetic luck into wealth, power, or unfair circumstances. The same should apply to looking special. But, at the same time, we don't mind that great reflexes and thinking are admired, or that having those attributes means you can do some things which, without them, you could not do. So, though it makes me nervous, shouldn't that also apply to appearance? Special traits, features, qualities, or talents, in existing societies, all convey both benefits and debits. The sex overlay gives looks an added dimension, but any special quality tends to convey advantages, pressures, options, rewards, and also some costs. But in a new society surely being lucky or unlucky in the genetic lottery should not convey material advantage, greater say in society, or freedom from responsibility, nor impose pressures, denials, or abuse. INT. HOSPITAL OFFICE - DAY Miguel Guevara queries MARK FEYNMAN 52, in nurses outfit, and BARBARA BETHUNE, 50, in doctors gown, about class and health. MIGUEL GUEVARA Mark, can you tell us how you first got involved and about some of your early postconvention activities? MARK FEYNMAN I went to the first RPS convention as a working class nurse already hostile to corporate hierarchy, but I didn't know if the convention would address my concerns, much less elevate them. INT. AUDITORIUM - DAY YOUNG MARK FEYNMAN, 29, in nurses outfit, addresses doctors and nurses in auditorium at first RPS Convention.. YOUNG MARK FEYNMAN We nurses are here to say we hate bad health care. We want to provide better. We demand respect. Allotting excessive power and income to doctors at the expense of nurses, technicians, and other hospital workers must stop. MARK FEYNMAN (V.O.) At the convention we nurses met, talked, and shared our views. We became confident. We celebrated our emergent program and we decided to form Health Care Workers United (HCWU), a movement for better health for all which later became a militant, multi-focus movement to organize medical workplaces and win broader health policy reforms. These organizations investigated and learned about hospitals' financial logic. We learned health workers' attitudes toward their conditions. We attracted support and initiated positive campaigns. But before all that, at the convention, after nurses held some sessions, we invited doctors to attend one. Nurses and doctors from around the country met. YOUNG MARK FEYNMAN We respect the work you do, but feel you are overpaid, over protective of yourselves, and overly hostile to us. Do you really think you are doctors and we are nurses because you are superior? Do you really think you deserve more income, more status, more power? Do you deny you have those benefits without valid justification? Do you believe our different tasks justify our difference in income and power? Or do you understand our different tasks - and different life circumstances - create differences in means to attain knowledge which then enforce differences in income and power? Do you doctors, like other coordinator class members, believe you are properly empowered and rewarded? Do you believe we workers are dumb and parochial, and should be grateful? Do you feel we should join a movement for a new society, but not make decisions? We should help you dump the old boss for you to become the new boss? Sometimes we nurses even believe that we can't handle empowered work and that we deserve less income and say. Or, if we are not submissive, we sometimes furiously want doctors out of RPS. Even worse, we sometimes get so angry we get baited into denigrating training, knowledge, and skill. But other times, like now, we see clearly. We see we must eliminate class division not only in hospitals but throughout society. We see we must involve coordinator class members in RPS without your dominating RPS. ROTUND DOCTOR Calls out from audience. If you are right, why don't more nurses say so? YOUNG MARK FEYNMAN Because we have families to feed. Because you work us ragged. A better question is why some of us do publicly address class issues? It's probably because our jobs aren't as successful as most working class jobs at disempowering us. We are subordinated like other workers, but we are less socialized into accepting our plight. Still, even once we become aware and active, we don't want to alienate people who have critically important knowledge. We don't want to antagonize doctors into rejecting change. So we often put a lid on our feelings. SHORT DOCTOR Why isn't this concern visible in the progressive media I read? YOUNG MARK FEYNMAN We don't expect mainstream media to question private ownership of workplaces. It would violate the owners' interests and beliefs. Similarly, in alternative media, coordinator class rule gets no attention. By analogy, I surmised this was because our media is typically run by coordinator class members who shut off attention to these issues. INT. HOSPITAL OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Mark, what pushed you to ever broader radicalism about health care, and what blocked that path? MARK FEYNMAN The class revelation, and insights about race and gender, played a big role. But so did our daily circumstances. How often can you see the effects of pollution, monopoly-priced care, paternalistic doctoring, bullet wounds, overdoses, obesity, unemployment, hunger, addiction, pharmaceutical overuse of psychic drugs and antibiotics, and hospital profit seeking and not become activist, unless you block yourself from feeling? EXT. CAR IN MUMBAI - DAY Mark and an INDIAN REVOLUTIONARY drive through Mumbai. Beggars accost them at every stoplight. YOUNG MARK FEYNMAN How do you deal with this poverty, this constant pain and pleading, day after day? INDIAN REVOLUTIONARY I blind myself. I tune it out. MARK FEYNMAN (V.O.) Of course most who took that route developed a creeping coldness of the spirit but my escort was an exception. Another time I was talking with a prominent activist from the New Left era. EXT. WALKING IN PARK - DAY Mark and OLDER ACTIVIST converse. OLDER ACTIVIST In the Sixties and Seventies I could rebel, so I tuned in to the reality around me. I turned on to my full feelings of human solidarity, and I adopted the militant radical path of the day. Later, when things got less active, I could still dissent, but to express outrage would fail. Since I couldn't productively express it, I didn't let myself feel it. INT. HOSPITAL OFFICE - DAY MARK FEYNMAN When I thought about those examples, I realized that reduced empathy made good sense to function daily in hospitals, but writ large it buttressed the system. From there, I asked simple questions. What social policies, behaviors, habits, and requirements caused people to be unhealthy? What changes could improve the situation? Our health movement's early growth freed our feelings. EXT. DEMO VIDEO MONTAGE - DAY Various rallies culminate in massive Chicago march. MARK FEYNMAN (V.O.) We initiated various boycotts of unhealthy products and their manufacturers. Then we took up demands about pharmaceutical companies courting doctors to write excessive prescriptions. We took up single payer health care. We initiated mass campaigns to provide excellent health care in rural and low income areas and in the treatment of children in schools. In 2027 over 200,000 nurses marched in Chicago and no one knows how many more held strikes and marches around the country. Incredible feelings of empathy, anger, hope, and desire fueled the effort. Soon after, we campaigned in medical schools to revamp curricula and behaviors, and in hospitals to overthrow the idea of interning as boot camp. Strikes and occupations played a big role but most important was ceaseless, informed, effective, organizing. INT. HOSPITAL OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Can you tell us of a personally pivotal event in your RPS days. MARK FEYNMAN It was 2023 or 2024, I was at work, doing my job, but also talking about politics and RPS. INT. HOSPITAL LUNCH ROOM - DAY Mark and psychiatrist at lunch argue. MARK FEYNMAN (V.O.) One day I went to lunch and happened to sit with a hospital psychiatrist friend of mine. We got to talking, and he took great offense, feeling my views implied he was insufficiently concerned about the well being of nurses, as well as being classist toward working people generally. Psychiatrist leaps out of his seat, leans on the table to hold himself and shouts in Mark's face. His nose moves inches from Mark's. He is red and nearly physically attacks Mark. MARK FEYNMAN (V.O.) We hadn't been talking about him, but about prevalent attitudes to campaigns outside the hospital. I didn't intentionally push his buttons, but he took it that way. PSYCHIATRIST (Screaming) I don't have to take this from you. I won't take this from you. You are purely mental. You have no feelings. You are uncaring. You are manipulative. You are controlling. You think you are so smart... but I am a caring person, I am a doctor of the mind. I am smarter. MARK FEYNMAN (V.O.) Afterwards, I thought a lot about how to communicate about issues of coordinator class working class relations without so polarizing folks. But I also wondered how a trained psychiatrist who routinely had to maintain his calm in difficult situations, could get so hostile over such an indirect affront. What I took from it was the intense emotional power that drove our defending our views of ourselves, and the potential of that inclination to subvert our reason and even our history and connections. I saw a person more aware than most others about coordinator class and working class relations become even more polarized and hostile than people whose views were much further away from mine. I suspect a lot of people in RPS had similar experiences, and I hope we all learned from them. RPS history says we did. INT. HOSPITAL OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Barbara, as a doctor, how did you feel about nurses, then, and later? BARBARA BETHUNE Then, I was disdainful and dismissive. I paid lip service to equity and even tried to support nurses, but I ultimately thought of them as wannabe doctors who couldn't make the grade. It's embarrassing to admit, but I said I had friends who were nurses, not unlike during Jim Crow racism white folks would say they had black friends. I thought nurses fit their position and had no reason to complain. I thought they should feel thankful that I administered and cared for them. INT. MEETING ROOM - DAY Young Mark Feynman addresses nurses and doctors in meeting room at the convention. BARBARA BETHUNE (V.O.) At the first RPS convention, I had a hard time registering Mark's message. It was incredible how many notions it challenged and how radicalizing its insights were. YOUNG MARK FEYNMAN Can you see how your view of nurses hides from you the gigantic volume of talents and skills stifled to sustain existing hierarchies? Can you see the impact of your socialization and your work on your view of who I am? BARBARA BETHUNE (V.O.) The way I finally understood was by seeing that with racism white people convinced themselves they deserved their advantages. Whites are worthy. Blacks and browns are not. I realized that there was little difference between that and my attitude toward nurses. YOUNG MARK FEYNMAN Can you see how dominant groups maintain their advantages and convince themselves those advantages are warranted by denigrating subordinate groups? You doctors do that to us. If society didn't squash desires, everyone could do a mix of empowering, uplifting tasks as well as share more rote tasks. Most nurses would do some doctoring, and if being a doctor didn't appeal to some of us, or wasn't in our range of abilities, we would do other empowering tasks. Can you see that it is disgusting for society to have relatively few people do all the empowering tasks and use their derivative empowerment to aggrandize themselves? INT. HOSPITAL OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA How did these realizations affect your views on economics more broadly? BARBARA BETHUNE I had heard RPS economic ideas earlier and scoffed at them as ridiculous. Balancing jobs for empowerment, giving income for duration, intensity, and onerousness of work, having self management? Come on. Get serious. That is stupidity on steroids. I wanted an end to profit seeking, but I saw the alternative as people like me taking over. Remove owners, sure, but leave people like me in charge. INT. MEETING IN LARGE ROOM AT CONVENTION - EVENING Young Barbara Bethune apologizes to SPEAKER. BARBARA BETHUNE (V.O.) I remember a moment in the first convention after the meeting with nurses that had so challenged me. There was a talk about RPS-type economics and after it ended, I spoke to the speaker. YOUNG BARBARA BETHUNE I am sorry. For years I have dismissed your economic vision as silly and impossible. I didn't think about it. I didn't evaluate it. I dismissed it without engaging it. I now realize I did that because of my own class interests and the biases they gave me. I apologize for that. SPEAKER No one has ever said that so directly before. Thank you for doing so. You know, we are all twisted and fed by our upbringing, schooling, and social roles, and having been subjected to all that, it is no sin to have some elitist beliefs. It is only a sin to cling to such beliefs after we understand them. INT. HOSPITAL OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Mark, your speech was not long after the Trump and anti-Trump period. Was it connected? MARK FEYNMAN The passionate anger coursing through a good part of Trump's supporters was in considerable part hostility to a perceived class enemy. But the class they hated was not capitalists. You have to realize that we workers never personally encounter a capitalist but we routinely encounter doctors, lawyers, accountants, engineers, and others who have highly empowered jobs, elevated status, and great wealth. We daily serve these coordinators. We obey them. They routinely treat us like children. They dress and talk differently than we do. They enjoy different movies and TV. They expect us to move out of their way and to follow their instructions as we go about our demeaning tasks. We workers hate being administered, bossed, rendered powerless, considered inferior, and paternalized, but lacking other means, we have to get essential benefits from coordinators. We have to acclimate to their arrogance in order to get by, and sometimes we become what we do. While Trump's working class supporters' views of him were horrendously misplaced, their antipathy for managers, doctors, lawyers, engineers, and accountants who earn many times what workers earn and who treat workers like children was fully warranted. On average we workers despise coordinators even as we depend on and obey them and want our kids to become them. INT. MEETING IN LARGE ROOM AT CONVENTION - DAY Young Mark Feynman addresses audience. YOUNG MARK FEYNMAN Trump won. Why didn't left commentators' answers about the state of working class lives resonate more with workers than did those of a billionaire who treated workers with contempt? How could decades of organizing leave so many of us susceptible to this narcissistic reactionary? It was because the decades of organizing had often been rooted in coordinator class connections, assumptions, and values. It had often had manners, style, tone, taste, vocabulary, and even policies dismissive of working people. We workers felt this even when some electoral candidate, anti nuke organizer, campus radical, or obscure writer said screw the 1 percent. Their manners, words, and style said they despised us. Movements talked a lot about owners and profit but showed no interest in relations between coordinators and the working class. Movements didn't hear workers, didn't respect workers, and didn't follow workers. INT. HOSPITAL LUNCH ROOM - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Barbara, can you tell how you became a radical doctor? BARBARA BETHUNE I went to medical school but became frustrated. After medical school an internship pressured me to jump ridiculous hurdles and accept that I shouldn't fight the system. I could whine to friends away from work, but I shouldn't challenge employers. My silence let me graduate but it also prepared me to impose similar insanity on those who came after. I cared about patients. I had a soul. But hospital roles undercut my intentions. To become a doctor I fulfilled academic rituals and defended doctors' privileges. I accepted impositions, bludgeoned those below, and sought growing income. MIGUEL GUEVARA But you finally resisted? BARBARA BETHUNE I began to see interning as sophisticated hazing. To test my impression I visited a military boot camp and watched new soldiers undergo training. EXT. MILITARY TRAINING FIELD / DAY Soldiers go through their paces. BARBARA BETHUNE (V.O.) Boot camp includes learning to shoot, to work together, to handle danger, just as interning includes medical learning, but boot camp mainly produces soldiers ready, willing, and sometimes even eager to kill on command. It educates recruits to ask no questions. It removes social and moral inclinations. It graduates soldiers ready to follow orders. INT. HOSPITAL LUNCH ROOM - DAY MIGUEL GUEVARA And you felt being an intern was similar? BARBARA BETHUNE Interning created doctors who will defend huge salaries against any challenge regardless of the health implications for patients and society. We were prepared to abet pharmaceutical profit seeking by way of increasing opioid addiction. We learned to denigrate nurses, to exclude them from medical decisions and activities even at the expense of patient well being. Interning prepared us to defend incredibly inflated incomes by keeping down the number of doctors via exclusionary medical school practices. I became curious so I looked and found similar dynamics for lawyers and other professions as well. Training for professions conveys skills, knowledge, and confidence but also ensures that recipients mostly use those gains on behalf of themselves and those above. Becoming a doctor entails navigating pressure, frustration, and anger and provokes various reactions. Before RPS, doctors would try to be ethical without challenging their role assignments because they believed challenging their roles would change nothing and incur personal loss. We delivered medicine to the sick if the sick could pay and if treating them wouldn't disrupt hospital or societal hierarchies, but we didn't address the underlying causes of sickness and we defended and even exploited existing relations. Role structures in hospitals, like those in churches, law firms, and political parties, induced going along to get along. Overturning one's role felt like a pipe dream. Complying with one's role morphed from something we did under duress, to who we were. Benefiting from a monopoly on empowering work blinded us to our arrogance. Someone who retained sufficient humanity to resist seemed saint-like. When I went to the convention I didn't know if RPS could provide a good path forward, but I would try, and at the convention, I met other medical workers from around the country and realized I was less different than I had feared. We shared stories and desires. We talked about changes we could fight for. The ideas that gained greatest traction were seeking comprehensive single payer health care, fighting pharmaceutical companies misuse of medicines, bringing doctors to poor locales, empowering nurses, changing the income and decision making structure of the profession, agitating for more responsible food policies, and agitating for more healthful ecological policies and work conditions. I got active trying to battle the pharmaceutical companies and challenging hierarchies of income and influence inside hospitals. MIGUEL GUEVARA How? EXT. RALLIES AT PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANIES / DAY Montage of rallies, etc. BARBARA BETHUNE (V.O.) To combat misusing prescriptions we rallied and sat-in blocking operations to reveal how pharmaceutical companies not only vastly over charged, but aggressively overprescribed with massive overadvertising. We showed the true costs of production of drugs and the insanely high markups imposed by monopolistic pricing. We shined a light on prescribing unnecessary surgeries and destructive pain relief. The practices we unearthed were nauseating, but we were even more shocked to discover that most people were unsurprised by what we revealed. We realized we mainly needed to convince people that this grotesque situation wasn't inevitable. We brought class action suits against pharmaceutical companies. Young claimants fought misuse of mood altering medications. Elderly claimants fought companies trying to grab all their savings. Those addicted to opioids fought pharmaceutical drug dealing. Everyone fought the misuse of antibiotics that risked super bugs and pandemics. We undertook a national boycott of the worst pharmaceutical culprits. But the main thing, I think, was that we began linking these campaigns to larger ones about the overall medical system, polity, and economy, so people began to feel we could not only win an immediate gain, but keep winning more, and preserve our gains. My other focus was challenging elitist dynamics inside hospitals and health care generally. In recent years, racism and sexism had been addressed with considerable progress, but class division had barely been addressed at all. We got people to talk at meetings. We sought greater income, more influence, and access to more skills for nurses. We challenged doctor arrogance and supported nurses and other medical workers and non medical staff. Medicine was a rapaciously self seeking luxury trade. It was sick. We operated on it. EXT. BALLFIELD - DAY Miguel Guevara queries PETER CABRAL, 64, large and athletic, still, about prison life. MIGUEL GUEVARA Peter, do you remember your radicalization? PETER CABRAL A friend of mine was shot and killed in a drive-by. Another friend became a gang member and was the shooter in some feuds before he too was shot. I grew up around needles and guns. Gangs were our means to have close allies. A gang had your back. A gang promised financial well being. After my friend died I was uneasy but it didn't break my gang loyalty. But then I visited relatives and heard stories of their arrests. I visited a few trials, and it was an incarceration parade. I got arrested, wrongly, though it wasn't anger at the wrongful incarceration that drove me to political awareness. It was the incredible reality that prison was about control and profit on one side, and surviving and becoming a more effective criminal on the other side. Prison was a school for crime. Rhetoric I previously ignored became the reality I lived. I had to accept my lot as a criminal and make the best of it, or I had to reject my lot and find a different road. I rejected and ran away from crime toward activism. I had a talent for explaining, hearing, and relating to others. Public speaking and activism came naturally. Nonetheless, but for a few random factors, I'd have been a career criminal. MIGUEL GUEVARA You left the gang life but what took you into activism? EXT. PRISON YARD - DAY Prisoners gather, talk, YOUNG PETER CABRAL, 42, in prison outfit, listens. PETER CABRAL (V.O.) I went to a meeting in the prison yard with a friend. I found the people different, and I was provoked. I went to another. It took some time undoing old biases. EXT. BALLFIELD - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA You became very active? PETER CABRAL I had been arrested on trumped up charges and my incarceration was overturned after I served six years. So I was familiar with the incarceration of innocents not only on trumped up charges, but also due to bureaucratic pressure, racism, and laws that punish victimless crimes. INT. VIDEO MONTAGE - DAY Images of prison, organizing, strikes, repression. PETER CABRAL (V.O.) On entering prison my expectations came from TV and gossip. I quickly realized plenty of inmates were innocent or over sentenced. I fought to survive. I learned to relate and navigate. I made friends with people I could work with. Next we began to build our numbers. We shared texts from RPS. We corresponded to inmates in other prisons about our experiences and and discussed theirs. By 2026, we made some serious noise. We didn't have much idea what it could achieve, but we called a one day strike. The turnout was enormous. While our one-day strike made demands only about prison conditions, prison labor was our real target. You work at command. You anticipate violent repression. You get subsistence. Your every breath is overseen. So why not strike for a living wage? Why not participate in the decisions that affect us? We should improve our current lives, but if we are supposed to leave prison as citizens, we should also develop citizen-like habits. We initiated a more sustained strike that addressed the behavior of guards, rules for visiting, availability of books, and internet access. We demanded opportunities to conduct our own classes and we sought good wages, conditions, and other rights. It wasn't easy talking with hardened inmates whose mindsets were often cautious, hostile, and even violent. Nonetheless, our strike spread from prison to prison and attracted enormous outside support. We were hard to repress. It wasn't that the guards couldn't brutalize us into submission. They could, and they did, often. But we didn't fight back. And that not only won us tremendous support from outside, it also limited the violence. We would back off, seemingly lose, and within days be back on strike. Like Cool Hand Luke, a prison favorite, we got knocked down and then got back up over and over. But we took Luke one better. We didn't individually heroically escape our hell only to be repeatedly hauled back. We collectively, methodically, replaced our hell. INT. LYDIA'S LIVING ROOM - DAY Miguel Guevara queries LYDIA LUXEMBERG, 93, dressed like 40, about joining RPS. MIGUEL GUEVARA Lydia, how did you first become radicalized? LYDIA LUXEMBURG In college in the 1960s, I got caught up in the politics of the times. I hated U.S. violence in Indochina. I hated sexism in society and in the left itself. I rejected women being targets to bomb or rape, ornaments to parade, or servants to do tasks men wished to avoid. MIGUEL GUEVARA When RPS was emerging, you were around seventy with a lifetime of activism. Did you feel vindicated? LYDIA LUXEMBURG The opposite. I felt some of us knew what was needed 50 years ago. Why didn't we do a better job communicating it sooner? I was ecstatic it was happening but I was tormented by how many lives were diminished by my generation not doing better earlier. MIGUEL GUEVARA What ideas distinguished RPS from prior projects? What attracted you? LYDIA LUXEMBURG Before RPS I saw the world through a lens that highlighted gender so heavily that much else went largely unnoticed. Viewing church, education, sports, TV, work, and families, I saw women being mother like and wife-like and men being father-like and husband-like, but I didn't see other group differences. It was a bit like looking at the world through a filter that makes certain colors very intense while blurring others. I saw male and female in high definition. I saw gender permeating workplaces. I didn't see class and race permeating families. At first, RPS's holistic demands to highlight all defining parts of life felt purist. MIGUEL GUEVARA Why didn't that insight grab you, right off? LYDIA LUXEMBURG I think I feared that if we didn't elevate kinship above all else, sexist men would peripheralize women. Later I realized RPS was adding more focuses, not subtracting mine. INT. PUBLIC TALK - NIGHT YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG, 73, dressed like 40, speaks to audience. YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG Economics affects politics, race, and gender. Politics affects race, gender, and economics. Race affects economics, politics, and gender. Gender affects economics, politics, and race. It may seem mantra-like, but to over-elevate a particular side of life risks missing much about other mutually intersecting aspects. Elevating one aspect above others addresses race, class, or gender but in ways alienating people more affected by other focuses. It pits constituencies against one another. Imagine we have a slippery, heavy object to move. Various teams prepare to grab hold. Each team has a part of the whole that it most wants to move and can tug better than it can tug any other part. Each team grabs its part without noticing what the other teams are doing. Instead of all the teams moving all the parts in concert, and the whole object going where they intend, the teams pull and push at odds with each other and the whole object moves a bit here and a bit there, but never far in any direction. INT. LYDIA'S LIVING ROOM - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA You said two RPS conceptual innovations attracted you. What was the second? LYDIA LUXEMBURG To be in an economy, you have to work, buy, and sell. To be in a religion, you have to relate to its church or other structures. To be in a family, you have to be a mother, father, brother, or sister. To benefit from some institution, you have to comply with whatever roles define that institution. If you are a nurse, a congressperson, a priest, a bricklayer, a short order cook, a teacher, or a mayor, to gain benefits you have to behave consistent with your role in the institutions you navigate. You have to play the game. We do what our situations require and we become what we do. It is true in a corporation, family, mall, church, prison, government, military, or criminal cartel. INT. CLASSROOM - DAY Young Lydia Luxemburg teaches a class. YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG To evaluate a workplace, family, government or whatever, we have to reveal the roles people relate to in that institution. What do the roles demand? Who the roles cause us to become? To change an institution, we have to decide what roles block our lives, and what new roles could advance our lives. We have to determine what we can fight for to move us nearer our goals and then also help us win further gains. INT. GLASS FACTORY - DAY YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG talks with a group of WORKERS. LYDIA LUXEMBURG (V.O.) Early in RPS I visited a worker-run glass factory in Cleveland. Workers there were surprisingly despondent about their new circumstances deteriorating back toward what they had known before they took over. TALL MALE GLASS WORKER (distraught) It feels like there is no alternative to enduring the drudgery and poverty we thought we were escaping. All the old crap is coming back. LATIN FEMALE GLASS WORKER (near tears) We set up a workers council to have decision making by everyone involved. We equalized wages. We practiced mutual support. A year passed and in recent weeks few have attended our council meetings. Wage differences are returning. Work is reverting to alienating drudgery. ASIAN FEMALE GLASS WORKER Before he left a manager called me naive. He told me that the inequalities and hierarchies I opposed were part of being human. He said we are who we are. He said my joy at taking over the workplace would evaporate into failure. I laughed at him, but now I fear he was right. YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG Tell me, are the folks with empowering tasks, as time passes, seeing themselves as deserving more income and better conditions? Are the folks with disempowering tasks becoming resigned to less income and worse conditions? Is that the old crap that is returning? Workers nod yes. YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG (CONT'D) When you took over your workplace you left some people doing overwhelmingly rote, repetitive, and disempowering tasks while other people did mostly empowering tasks. That way of dividing up work resurrected the old crap by empowering a few and disempowering the rest. It isn't human nature bringing back old ills, it is an unchanged division of labor. You all grew up in working class homes and neighborhoods. You all had little formal education. Upon occupying your factory, most of you wound up with assembly work while a few wound up with daily decision making and other empowering responsibilities. You all thought it was just how things were. It was how to get work done. But it was actually a particular choice that elevated some of you into becoming rulers and others ruled, some coordinators, others workers. It wasn't written in your DNA. It wasn't inevitable. It was a bad choice you can undo. INT. LYDIA'S LIVING ROOM - DAY Interview continues. LYDIA LUXEMBURG The analysis wasn't difficult. We didn't need a whole new vocabulary and years of study to see the situation. It was simple and oddly, it's simplicity ran afoul of left academics. Our critics inside the movement worked hard to use long sentences and obscure words. For us to speak plainly and advocate simple insights upset them. It may sound perverse, but after a time we realized there was an underlying reason for it. When your status, income, and power spring from having a monopoly on empowering circumstances, defending your status, income, and power depends on making sure your information and skills remain inaccessible to people beneath you. Simplification and clarity spread skills. So academic-types didn't like our criticizing their monopolizing empowering work, and they also didn't like our demystifying language. Obscurantism becomes habit, lifestyle even. Nonetheless, regardless of academics minimizing attention to coordinator habits and attacking us, our simple ideas were not only accessible, they were intensely practical. It was a battle, but a simple lesson gained ground. If you don't pay close attention to choices about institutions and roles, some seemingly innocuous choice that seems inevitable and that you take for granted, can subvert your best intentions. Retaining the old division of labor was just such a choice. I was forever affected by that lesson. EXT. LAKEFRONT - DAY Miguel Guevara queries NOAM CARMICHAEL, 47, a bit academic looking, about joining RPS. MIGUEL GUEVARA Noam Carmichael, I wonder if you remember first becoming radical? NOAM CARMICHAEL In 2001 I was old enough to get a vague sense, with my parents' help, for the change in my situation due to my religion and appearance. I was radicalized by trying to understand and oppose Islamaphobia. When I got to college my roommate took one look and I could feel his fear. For two weeks we worked that through and we became close friends, even to this day. I would guess that had we not dealt with our tensions he would have voted for Trump. I learned we couldn't reach a good place by being hostile. We had to listen to one another and work through confusions and biases. If we didn't talk - much less if we dismissed and denigrated one another - we would become enemies. MIGUEL GUEVARA Can you remember a personally important event you experienced during the rise of RPS? NOAM CARMICHAEL I often taught in RPS Schools for Organizers. The schools focused on analysis of society's ills, movement building, vision of what society could be, and how to attain the desired future. INT. MODEST AUDITORIUM - DAY Students and Faculty mill about, then begin session. NOAM CARMICHAEL (V.O.) There were many such schools. Sometimes on a campus, sometimes in a workplace. Sometimes in an apartment complex. Sometimes the schools were for people in some industry, like the Hollywood schools that began in 2022 and propelled the whole extended project. And sometimes they were for RPS members themselves. The schools typically ran for at least a week and included classes, discussions, and time to socialize. About two thirds in, after we reached a level of trust and positive energy, we would have a night session to answer the question, what is responsible for your being here to learn about revolutionizing society? Some people would tell about first reading some author and the eye-opening effect it had on them. Or, some would tell of a first rally or a march opening their views and launching them into activism. But many other stories featured tears and trauma. FEMALE TALL STUDENT I was abused as a child. I was repeatedly raped. Later I resisted. MALE TALL STUDENT I saw a dear friend gunned down in the streets. These are his initials tattooed on my arm. I wanted different streets - for everyone. FEMALE SHORT STUDENT I lost a parent, a friend, and a friend's parent to drugs and suicide. What caused it? Them or society? I decided society. MALE SHORT STUDENT I lost my home and lived threadbare. I became addicted but got straight. I wanted a ten step program for everyone to escape oppression. NOAM CARMICHAEL (V.O.) Sometimes it was less extreme: I was bullied, or I was a bully. I was cheated, or I cheated. People no one expected to tell such stories said publicly what had only been private before. The suffering they reported cemented my radical commitments. They made me more of a listener than I had been before. I learned what went unsaid was often profoundly important. EXT. LAKEFRONT - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA What was the implication of race inside RPS? NOAM CARMICHAEL The direct implication had been well known for a long time. An organization seeking a better society had to welcome and benefit from diverse racial communities. We had to elevate members of diverse communities to leadership. We had to convey to diverse communities predominant say over their own affairs. INT. VIDEO MONTAGE - DAY Black movements, and white allies, displayed in video. NOAM CARMICHAEL (V.O.) Minority communities suffered low income, little influence, and escalating danger. But focusing centrally on race caused some to overlook other matters. We saw we had to instead add to a race focus, a gender, class, and authority focus, as well as vice versa. We needed to seek a new society rather than only bemoan short term problems. EXT. LAKEFRONT - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA There was a controversial issue, in which I remember you played a role. It was who should organize whom? NOAM CARMICHAEL I attended an early RPS-sponsored meeting about working on an antiracist campaign. There was a seeming understanding among the experienced blacks present - and an analogous view among women about sexism - that it was not their responsibility to organize among white people, or men. INT. RPS PLANNING MEETING - DAY Debate rages. BLACK WOMAN ACTIVIST It is only another burden on us to expect blacks to explain or to combat racism among white folks by talking with them, or to expect women to explain or combat sexism among men by talking with them. White folks and men have to do the talking to white folks and men. NOAM CARMICHAEL (V.O.) The accepted formulation had been repeated so often, so forcefully, so emotively, and for so many years, that it had become an unchallengeable radical axiom. YOUNG WHITE MALE ACTIVIST But what if I don't feel I understand racism or sexism enough to be as convincing as someone who has directly experienced the issues? BLACK WOMAN ACTIVIST Get smarter. Stop thinking that I should tell you about racism as compared to you educating yourself and other whites. YOUNG NOAM CARMICHAEL Wait a minute. I am an activist, I am antiracist, I am black, and I am experienced. I get that in a wonderful world I wouldn't have to worry about educating anyone about racism, much less spending time educating racist white folks. I also get that to do so is annoying, time consuming, and demeaning. But I don't see how my agreeing on all that implies that I should never talk to whites, educate whites, and organize whites about racism. Why does that follow? If it's because I shouldn't do anything that compared to being burden-free in a better world burdens me, then compared to not having racism, organizing Blacks burdens me too, but I do it, not every minute, but when I think it can contribute to overcoming racism. So isn't the right question about my talking to white people about racism - will my doing so help the anti racist cause? And if that is the right question, then when I am in a better position to communicate or organize whites than are other whites who are present, shouldn't I do it? Meeting and aftermath proceeds in background. NOAM CARMICHAEL (V.O.) I got shouted down, but I didn't fade away. And I knew that a great many folks agreed with what I had said, not least because they told me so after the meeting. But I kept at it, discussions spread, and soon the old viewpoint unravelled. EXT. LAKEFRONT - DAY Interview continues. NOAM CARMICHAEL The more I thought about it, the more I felt the main issue was the same as in many other cases. Were we trying to win? Did we believe we could win? Or were we just hammering out a stance that felt comfortable and made modest gains without seeking long term goals? I wasn't saying that blacks - or women in the parallel case - should spend all their time talking with intractable white racists or male sexists. But I was saying that often blacks and women know more and can better motivate what they know than can whites or men. The right calculus wasn't how much of a burden was it for us to do that, but how necessary was our doing that to winning change? MIGUEL GUEVARA RPS also jettisoned attacking "white skin privilege," and you pursued that battle too, right? NOAM CARMICHAEL I felt privilege implied something you should renounce, but when folks called out white skin privilege they mentioned safety from abuse, enjoying access and influence, and getting fair treatment. The issue wasn't that whites had that, but that others did not. Talking about renouncing white skin privilege made poor whites think our aim was to take basic things away from them rather than to guarantee everyone those things and much more. MIGUEL GUEVARA What about communication issues? NOAM CARMICHAEL Just preceding RPS, activists looking back and seeing no lasting revolutionary gains seemed to think past failings meant we were missing hugely difficult idea that needed to be discovered by way of very nearly unreadable texts. But the problem wasn't unknown obscure ideas. It was known clear ideas not reaching large audiences. To communicate, RPS mostly found better ways to popularly convey existing insights and vision. We involved ever more people in refining, employing, and implementing new thoughts in their own words. We went from activism ruled by academia to academia renovated by activism. We went from obscurity to transparency. We didn't compromise content, we clarified it. MIGUEL GUEVARA Another controversy had to do with issues of solidarity and their implications for being true to one's views, right? INT. RPS CLASS - DAY STUDENTS hear from Young Noam Carmichael. YOUNG NOAM CARMICHAEL Showing solidarity means acting in accord with the interests of others and supporting others in their pursuits. Enjoying autonomy means functioning without intrusion from without. Clearly we shouldn't always support but nor should we always ignore others' wishes. So we have to determine what mindset and choices have the best chance of coming up with a desirable mix of solidarity and autonomy. As an anti racist or a feminist activist you certainly wouldn't want to be subject to the will of racists/sexists, nor even to the will of well-meaning people unaware of the dynamics of racism/sexism. You would want to be more autonomous, to explore your own views, pursue your own agendas, learn from your own mistakes, and benefit from your own insights. FEMALE BLACK STUDENT Are there examples that show that? YOUNG NOAM CARMICHAEL Over fifty years before RPS this wisdom was already encapsulated in what was called the autonomous women's, Black, and Latin movements. There was Bread and Roses in Massachusetts and Black Power through the South and national groups like the Black Panthers and the Young Lords. Women, blacks, and Latinos were tired of men and whites determining their agendas. They were tired of constantly expending excessive time and energy dealing with male or white complaints. The idea of autonomy first arose in the Black Power movement, meaning they would operate under their own control and pretty much unconnected to other aggregations of non-black people. It was okay in theory, but in practice such a movement could lose a lot of solidarity from others. Some said, why diminish our overall power with this autonomy fetish. Others said, why subject ourselves to endless hassle with folks who are trying to keep us down or who don't understand our situation? FEMALE BLACK STUDENT It seems intractable. We need autonomy but also solidarity. How can we have both? MALE WHITE STUDENT What about forming massive coalitions that contain women's organizations and anti racist organizations that align about global warming? YOUNG NOAM CARMICHAEL The problem is, while coalitions don't prevent a women's or anti racist organization from operating autonomously, and while they allow solidarity around whatever is the unifying issue of the coalition, the solidarity is too limited. FEMALE LATIN STUDENT The member organizations and movements don't enjoy the benefits of solidarity from other coalition members for their own agendas, nor do they offer solidarity to other members for anything beyond the unifying coalition focus. YOUNG NOAM CARMICHAEL Exactly. Over the years, coalitions have accomplished much, but RPS greatly extends the logic of having both autonomy and solidarity by proposing that groups work together on what we might call their greatest common sum agenda. Groups and projects join a "bloc." Each group and project retains its autonomy to pursue its own specific program as it decides. But each group and project also pledges to support the programs other bloc members propose. The agenda of the bloc is the sum of all the agendas of all its component organizations, movements, and projects. Each part of the bloc's agenda comes from the leadership of one or another partner in the bloc, but everyone adopts it all. FEMALE BLACK STUDENT I see how that way all members would receive and give solidarity, and how everyone would retain their focus. But aren't you just brushing away difficulty by saying everyone would support the whole agenda? YOUNG NOAM CARMICHAEL I hope not. Let's see. Suppose we take the women's movement discussed earlier. It has a program and style rooted in feminist activism. If it joins a bloc with others, then its prior program becomes one part of the program of the whole bloc. It will receive support from the other members. Reciprocally, as a member, it will have to support other members regarding their programs. Two factors make this hard. FEMALE BLACK STUDENT To join an organization in a bloc, I would have to decide not only that I liked the organization, but that I liked the bloc too. Organizations would fear this will reduce their membership. FEMALE LATIN STUDENT If a bloc includes organizations with contradictory programs, the overall bloc program would have to contain both aspects. That seems ludicrous. YOUNG NOAM CARMICHAEL I too initially considered the obstacles insurmountable. But if the overall purpose of the bloc is winning a new society with various agreed features, then we could see the contradictory program components as possibilities that should be explored. If one proves better, in time we chose it. But while the choice is uncertain, we keep the contrary aspects in play. And as soon as groups with a particular agenda reap the benefits of solidarity from others and, in turn, celebrate helping others, doubt dissipates. INT. CHURCH PEW - DAY Guevara questions BERTRAND DELLINGER, 75, short and academic looking. MIGUEL GUEVARA Bertrand, can you briefly describe the political vision of RPS. INT. AUDITORIUM - NIGHT YOUNG BERTRAND DELLINGER, 51, short and academic looking, delivers speech to AUDIENCE of two hundred or thereabouts. YOUNG BERTRAND DELLINGER RPS recognizes that political activity includes legislation, adjudication, and collective implementation of shared program. Polity should generate fair outcomes and produce collective self-management for all. We take grassroots mechanisms activists often form as our starting place by seeking to have every adult in society in local councils, with some elected to higher-level councils, and another layer, and another. BERTRAND DELLINGER (V.O.) In time we discovered that twenty five council members was a good choice, since with twenty-five, eight layers can cover even the largest country. YOUNG BERTRAND DELLINGER Within each council, RPS feels we should seek self-management by everyone affected. We should protect and pursue diversity. We should maintain solidaritous feelings and practices. We should get things done without debilitating delays. But all should have appropriate influence. AUDIENCE MEMBER But if everyone has influence, we won't have just the best decision makers decide. YOUNG BERTRAND DELLINGER That seems true but first, saying that people who are better decision makers don't get more say just for that reason, doesn't mean they shouldn't be heard. They simply need to convince others of the validity of their views, not impose them. We don't ignore expertise, nor do we give it undue power. Second, who is the world's foremost expert in your desires? AUDIENCE MEMBER My mother! YOUNG BERTRAND DELLINGER (Laughing.) No you are, clearly, so ensuring your influence when you are affected is part of ensuring that we respect expertise. And third, a decision reached without the will of those affected being counted is not a good decision in any event. It is imposed, not supported. If democracy is better than autocracy, then collective self-management is better yet. On the other hand, if experts having disproportionate power is better than informed participation by all affected, than dictatorship by a genius is better than democracy for all. We have to pick our preferred logic. RPS picks self-management and so seeks legislative structure that allows everyone to agree that outcomes are reached fairly and are subject to review. But violations can still certainly occur, and to deal with that, RPS favors a significantly improved court system, plus community-controlled police with balanced job complexes and remuneration for effort and sacrifice for all work, of course. AUDIENCE MEMBER Police? Are you kidding? I want none of that. YOUNG BERTRAND DELLINGER I know some in RPS are angered by what I and many others say about police and I understand why. Imagine you had been raped and RPS was saying there is a place for rape, suitably redefined, in the new society we seek. You would fight the insanity, and if you lost, you would justifiably decide RPS was not worth your support and involvement. I think members who have or who will quit RPS for retaining policing as part of its vision feel that sort of disgust and anger. To put the issue more immediately, should we treat today's police as enemies beyond reason or as potential allies to be organized? That discussion has the same passions as the visionary debate over having policing in a good society. Should we treat police like vicious animals, or organize them? RPS believes a vastly renovated police function is valid, and that police now, with all their violent faults, are better approached as potential allies than inevitable enemies. Violations are not going to magically disappear and dealing with them most effectively and safely requires people with special training and job requirements which enforce their own civility and responsibility. INT. LYDIA'S LIVING ROOM - DAY Miguel Guevara interviews LYDIA LUXEMBURG, 93, dressed like forty. MIGUEL GUEVARA Lydia, what does RPS say about kinship vision? LYDIA LUXEMBURG RPS wants to enhance solidarity, preserve diversity, apportion benefits and responsibilities fairly, and foster self-management. Even in a wonderful society, I might love someone who did not love me. Previously strong ties could wither. Rape and other violent acts might still occur. Social change won't eliminate losing friends and relatives to premature death. Adults will not all suddenly be equally adept at relating with children. It can't solve all that, but RPS says new kinship can stop causing men to dominate. MIGUEL GUEVARA But what would better kinship look like? INT. CLASS - DAY YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG, 70, dressed like 40, teaches class. YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG Sexism is enforced by rape and battering, by the cumulative impact of past sexist experiences on what men and women think, desire, feel, and do, but also by role differences in home life and we need to address all these. What if, as mothers, women produce daughters who, in turn, not only have mothering capacities but want to mother and not father. And what if, as fathers, men produce sons who not only have fathering capacities but want to father and not mother. Then couldn't one feature of a vastly improved society be having no mothering versus fathering, just parenting. Instead of one gender doing the nurturing, tending, and cleaning in families, called mothering, and the other gender doing the decision based tasks called fathering, both genders do a mix of all the tasks called parenting. INT. LYDIA'S LIVING ROOM - DAY MIGUEL GUEVARA How did this get beyond the classroom? LYDIA LUXEMBURG Through history, including in our own upbringing, everyone practiced mothering and fathering. Our child's lives were at stake. There would be no do overs. Nonetheless, we decided to break the mold. It began with feminists making their own home life more fair, but RPS also addressed surrounding institutions. For example, to have genderless parenting we had to have parental leave for newborn care, not leave for women only. MIGUEL GUEVARA And controversy about the family? LYDIA LUXEMBURG Long before RPS many feminists argued the nuclear family was a problem. Should child care and family involvement rest on only one or two biological parents, or instead involve relatives, friends, and even community members? We don't want to legislate how people live but we do urge that whatever patterns exist, each should foster gender equity. We seek to broaden the care-taking children enjoy and enlarge their participation in judgements. We hope children will not only become capable and confident, but also unconstrained by narrow feminine or masculine molds.Ê We still don't know what fully liberated sexuality will be like or all the diverse forms of intergenerational relations adults, children, and elders will share. What sex-gender patterns - monogamous and not, hetero, homo, or bi-sexual, trans, or not. What transformed caregiving institutions, families, schools, and other spaces for children as well as for adults and the elderly? But despite much our having more to discover, we are confident actors of all ages, genders, and preferences will engage in non oppressive consensual relations, free from stigma. INT. MAYOR'S OFFICE - DAY Miguel Guevara queries Bill Hampton on fighting sexism. MIGUEL GUEVARA Bill, beyond having a vision of feminist future relations, why was having powerful feminist program essential for RPS? BILL HAMPTON Regarding society, when RPS emerged, women still earned way less than men for the same work. Sexist violence was even escalating. Women's health was still manipulated. Women still feared night on the streets, suffered vicious harassment online, and lacked attentive audiences. Harassment at work was viral. Sexism wasn't as prevalent as five decades earlier, but the battle wasn't fully won. Regarding RPS itself, we enacted daycare at all organizational gatherings with a proviso that staffing should immediately be at least half male. We legislated that public speaking at our events, marches, teach-ins, and meetings and leadership for our events always had to be at least fifty percent female. When women were not available or were not felt to be prepared by prior experience to accomplish the tasks, we had to redress that imbalance with training and practice. The new norm was simple. Correct gender imbalance or don't proceed. Movement women organized themselves. They didn't care about happy smiles and promises. They weren't appeased by men saying have a nice day, or not being rapists. INT. RPS PLANNING MEETING - DAY About 60 women and 100 men discuss an action. Young Bill Hampton is chairing. Suddenly the door opens and 20 more women march in and stand in front, arms locked... YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG Bill, sit down... Thank you. From now on all meetings will have at least 50% women handling organization and being chair, and at least 50% women addressing topics raised. If you don't want to comply, fine, you will have to hold your meeting over unrelenting disruption. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) At this time, the rising tally of rapes on campuses had spurred urgency. Then, a rape occurred in Los Angeles, and a male movement leader was the rapist. Hesitancy had dissipated. YOUNG BILL HAMPTON Are't you worried that to hold back meetings waiting to fulfill gender norms will harm organizing? YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG Don't you see that not dealing with gender imbalance is devastating? WOMAN ACTIVIST AT MEETING Come on, Lydia. You demand more than we can accomplish. Worse, to disrupt will abet reaction. YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG Yes, we could be ham-handed. You are right we should avoid that. Hopefully you will help. Your concern is warranted, but it is not a reason to consign the left to perpetual hypocrisy and weakness. We must seek solidarity. We must address structures, not individuals. We must set standards for everyone, including ourselves. But if we aren't able to do an event or talk in a feminist manner, we should delay doing those things until we get ourselves ready to do them properly. Our desire to have public talks or conduct projects has to respect our desire for feminist achievement. If not, nothing will proceed. We don't seek verbal commitments to feminism. We don't even seek changes from male leftists to accord with feminist values. No personal blame is asserted. No apologies are wanted. We seek structural changes that make overcoming sexism part and parcel of functioning at all. BILL HAMPTON (V.O.) Earlier anti-sexist efforts had typically polarized men, and even many recalcitrant women, in ways that entrenched opposition. RPS attacked structures, but empathized with men. The goal was to organize, not antagonize. I should note that the precursor to all this wasn't just women's efforts decades earlier, but also a few years earlier when Hollywood established a right to have contracts require producers to employ women and minorities in appropriate numbers, and, if they didn't, production stopped. That was a very similar approach. Do better, or we won't let you operate. In fact, up until literally transforming institutions, that has been RPS's approach regarding overcoming sexism, and also regarding overcoming racism and classism. Do it carefully, do it mutually supportively, do it to win, but do it now. INT. RPS CLASS - DAY Young Lydia Luxemburg teaches class. YOUNG LYDIA LUXEMBURG We know we all largely become who our roles require us to be. So what roles should we change to prevent men becoming sexist and women accepting sexism? We know if men work and earn more, they will have means to dominate. We must win equal incomes. If in dating, courting, and raising children, men and women have different roles, then we will wind up with different dispositions. We must win equal familial roles. Further, when women do most nurturing and caring whereas men do most competing and governing, men become sort of thuggish and women become not only empathetic but also self-denying. To avoid that, men must do a fair share of nurturing in the movement, in society, and in families. Women must do a fair share of governing. EXT. WALKING IN PARK - DAY Guevara queries PETER CABRAL, 63, dressed in athletic apparal, about culture vision. MIGUEL GUEVARA Peter, what about culture vision? PETER CABRAL RPS says we need to appreciate the historical contributions of different communities more than ever before. We need to guarantee cultures greater rather than lesser means for further development. INT. CLASS - DAY YOUNG PETER CABRAL, 42, dressed in sweats, teaches class. YOUNG PETER CABRAL We know from history that cultural beliefs and habits give people a sense of who they are and where they come from. But we also know that in a competitive and hostile environment, religious, racial, ethnic, and national communities often fight one another.Ê We conclude that cultural salvation lies in eliminating racist institutions, dispelling racist ideologies, and changing the environments within which historical communities interrelate so communities can maintain and celebrate difference without fear of subjugation. We call this intercommunalism and it mainly guarantees that every community can carry on its traditions, languages, and self-definitions so the interaction of cultures enhances the characteristics of each and provides a richness that no single approach can ever attain. EXT. WALKING IN PARK - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA But reaching that goal has proven difficult, yes? PETER CABRAL That wasn't a surprise. Until a lengthy history of autonomy and solidarity overcomes suspicion and fear between communities, we need to make it incumbent on more powerful communities with less reason to fear domination to unilaterally begin the process of de-escalating disputes they may have with less powerful communities. When need be, oversight and enforcement need to occur by way of an intercommunal legal apparatus specializing in conflict resolution. Even more than in other areas, intercommunalist relations will have to be constructed, step by step, until a different historical legacy prevails. Nor will it always be easy to decide what necessary means communities should have for cultural reproduction, or what development free from unwarranted interference means in particular situations. But short of the future harmony, we knew that in the present the imbalance was so incredibly harsh that the priority for RPS had to be overcoming racist structures and habits while moving toward a transformed future. INT. DEN - DAY Miguel Guevara questions. MIGUEL GUEVARA Andrej, what about RPS economic vision? ANDREJ GOLDMAN RPS economics produces desired goods and services, but also desirable self-management, equity, solidarity, and diversity. It utilizes workplace and community councils where each actor has a say proportionate to the impact of the decided issue on them. In capitalist corporations, twenty percent of employees do work that enlarges their confidence, social skills, knowledge of the workplace, and initiative. Eighty percent do work that reduces their confidence, social skills, and workplace knowledge, and exhausts them. RPS calls the dominant twenty percent the coordinator class and the subordinate eighty percent the working class. INT. RPS CLASS - DAY Young Andrej Goldman teaches class. YOUNG ANDREJ GOLDMAN We have to not only eliminate capitalist ownership, but also the coordinator class doing all empowering work. Everyone should own equally. But more than that, each worker should also do a mix of tasks they are capable of and comfortable at, where each person's tasks provide a comparably empowering situation. INT. DEN - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA What about income? What is responsible? What works? ANDREJ GOLDMAN RPS says people too young or too old or otherwise unable to work gainfully should nonetheless get a full income, but people who can gainfully work should have an income reflecting the duration, intensity, and onerousness of their socially valued labor. INT. RPS CLASS - DAY Class continues. YOUNG ANDREJ GOLDMAN I shouldn't be remunerated as an athlete, a singer, or anything for which I can't produce outputs others want, but I should be remunerated for socially valuable work. I should earn more for working longer, more intensely, or at more onerous tasks. To get that is fair. It provides sensible incentives. It conveys essential indicators of people's preferences. MIGUEL GUEVARA (V.O.) What about allocation? YOUNG ANDREJ GOLDMAN RPS rejects competitive or authoritarian allocation and instead advocates cooperative negotiation among workers and consumers. Each worker and consumer council announces their desires and then updates their offers in light of others' offers. Community and industry agencies amass and summarize information to help workers and consumers assess costs, benefits, and preferences, and learn of jobs, new products, etc., so we can self-manage our production and consumption in light of emergent measures of personal, social, and environmental costs and benefits. MIGUEL GUEVARA (V.O.) What was dissent about your economic vision from outside and even inside RPS like? INT. ASSEMBLY HALL - DAY Young Andrej Goldman on stage hears and reacts to audience criticism. AUDIENCE CRITIC Your aims are morally nice but unreal. Your equitable remuneration will not elicit creativity and productivity. Your balanced job complexes and self management will not elicit quality. Your participatory planning will not elicit efficiency. Your vision is pie-eyed nonsense on stilts! YOUNG ANDREJ GOLDMAN Equitable remuneration is not only morally sound and socially positive, it provides appropriate incentives to work harder, longer, or at more onerous tasks. Balanced job complexes and self-management are not only fair, they unleash huge swaths of otherwise stunted human capacity while eliminating wasteful conflict. Participatory planning eliminates the built-in motivational and informational ills of markets, the authoritarianism of central planning, and the ecological irrationality of both. It reveals true social costs and benefits and meshes compatibly with equitable remuneration and self-management. ANDREJ GOLDMAN (V.O.) Both critics and advocates could not be right. Evidence and argument have gone our way. INT. DEN - DAY Inter MIGUEL GUEVARA Were their other objections from inside RPS? ANDREJ GOLDMAN Yes, some RPS members felt the emerging vision risked alienating potential coordinator class RPS members. They wanted to offer a less controversial vision closer to current potentials. Other members also wanted coordinator class involvement, but said hiding our full aims would repel many workers, corrode morale, and risk entrenching coordinator rule. Critics' fears that the full vision would cause some coordinators to not relate to RPS were correct. But for many coordinator class members, and more as each month and year passed, the predication was wrong. Workers led. Coordinators joined. Classlessness remained the goal. INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY Miguel Guevara questions Anton Rocker, 55, dressed casual. MIGUEL GUEVARA Anton, where do we stand regarding new workplaces? I remember a trip to Columbus Ohio. I arrived and got a tour of an occupied workplace from a few employees. INT. WORKPLACE FLOOR - DAY Workers talk with YOUNG ANTON ROCKER, 33, dressed in work outfit. STOCKY OHIO WORKER Our firm was tanking and the owners sold off its assets. We decided to run the firm ourselves. Many of the coordinator class left due to thinking that without the owners the firm would collapse. TALL OHIO WORKER In situations like ours, sometimes workers made incomes equitable and instituted workplace democracy but ignored job definitions and operated with little change regarding markets. Other times transformation included balancing jobs and full worker self management. In the former case, struggle became a contest between coordinators and workers. In the latter case, struggle became workers against old habits and the pressures of the market and banks. YOUNG ANTON ROCKER How do your relatives and friends who still work at typical workplaces regard your efforts? Are you having success organizing folks to follow the new path? STOCKY OHIO WORKER I don't talk about our project with family and friends. They will do similar only if their owners cash out so they have no choice but to take over or become unemployed. YOUNG ANTON ROCKER I don't get it. Would you take a job, giving up having any say, no longer having balanced jobs, if in return you received higher pay? TALL OHIO WORKER No. Wages matter but so does dignity. And in any case, we get better pay, too. YOUNG ANTON ROCKER Then why can't you explain the benefits to your relatives and friends so they pursue similar aims even in their profitable firms, rather than only when their owners cash out? STOCKY OHIO WORKER (shrugging) Just like we didn't, they won't, until they become desperate. INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY Interview continues. ANTON ROCKER Even now, I wonder what caused that mindset. Perhaps it was hopelessness, but the view was from people who had great hope, at least for themselves. Maybe it was to avoid clashing with relatives and friends, even if doing so could open a path to greater well-being. Whatever its cause, if their view had persisted each transformed workplace would be isolated. Worker reticence to reach out had to be overcome. A co-op transforming, a corporation undergoing internal struggles, and a new firm succeeding, would each have to see their task as not simply establishing their own firm, but also enlisting others to do likewise. To promote that, RPS emphasized creating federations of transformed workplaces that prioritized mutual aid, defense, and insurance, and sponsored events bringing workers from advanced projects to speak at other venues. Before RPS we had nearly 30 million small businesses in the U.S. About 20,000, which sounds like a lot but is less than a tenth of a percent, had more than 500 employees. Today I would guess we have perhaps 2 million well established RPS small businesses, and another 5 million struggling with transforming that will join the RPS count without much more change. RPS ideas battle for influence in nearly all the rest, too. And we have about 3,000 500 person or more RPS-oriented workplaces, another 4,000 undergoing major struggles, and all 20,000 include RPS-style campaigns with growing degrees of council organization. Momentum is now ours. It came when workers formed into councils, fought for gains, struck, and finally occupied and took over firms, with each step prodding and helping the next. INT. UNIVERSITY OFFICE - DAY Guevara questions BERTRAND DELLINGER, 76, dressed like scholar. MIGUEL GUEVARA Bertrand, universities and schooling are pegged for renovation, aren't they? BERTRAND DELLINGER As RPS was being born, universities and schools were repositories of dull drill, extinguished feeling, narrowed vision, and destroyed character, and, as well, the attention span and motivation of students was plummeting. INT. UNIVERSITY LECTURE HALL - DAY Students in large hall focus on phones, tablets, and laptops. BERTRAND DELLINGER (V.O.) I and many friends teaching back then couldn't usefully give lectures that required sustained attention. Students texted, emailed, watched videos, listened to music, and browsed. Click, click, click, they jumped from brief focus to brief focus. Their frequent shifting was so habitual they became driven to avoid serious, sustained, focus. They weren't good at multi-tasking, but at flitting. INT. HIGH SCHOOL CLASS - DAY Students like in college, but now also listening to music in one ear. BERTRAND DELLINGER (V.O.) Students gravitated toward doing what they were good at, and the trend seeped downward from colleges to become the norm in high schools too. Kids would even listen to music during class. To teach I had to accommodate the short focus of my students. But teachers nuggetizing content only added to the dynamic of electronic doo-dads fostering flitting from thing to thing. INT. UNIVERSITY OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. BERTRAND DELLINGER People are born ignorant, but we are made stupid by faulty education. To see students drift away was like being pummeled, daily, by failure. It was hard not to get hostile toward the students who preferred to mentally die than set aside their phones. INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT Family home for holiday. BERTRAND DELLINGER (V.O.) At a family gathering, when I was young, we would joke around, watch TV, but also talk about issues of the day. The young would be curious and want explanations for what was going on. Likewise for adults. But immediately pre-RPS, kids would sit on a couch with a tablet, laptop, and phone, and with the TV on, flitting from one to the other. They couldn't focus on things they still were interested in much less have sustained interest in anything new. They were almost proud of their social ignorance. Party and play. Shop till we drop. Flit from Facebook to Twitter to TV to web site. Do it again. Hold views based on Tweets. Screw evidence. Know little. Investigate nothing. Compete, learn how to bully or bow down. It wasn't all young people but it was too many. And it was adults as well, not least because they accepted it in their kids. In time, like kids, like parents. While parents weren't as enmeshed in screens, they were more into gossip and mass culture than anything more lasting. We had pervasive social media. News became little more than entertainment. Facebook bred dishonesty, judgementalism, and bullying. Short attention spans precluded serious discussion. Selfies flourished. So did depression hidden by lonely lies. INT. RPS CLASS - DAY YOUNG BERTRAND DELLINGER Schools socialize and sometimes transfer lessons and skills but mainly they deliver students suitably packaged for their future lives. And what is suitable to future life of course depends on what roles students will fill. Roughly eighty percent come out of school educated to endure boredom and take orders because those are the two main prerequisites to being a desirable hire for an employer trying to fill working class jobs. The other twenty percent receive particular knowledge suited to accounting, medicine, engineering, or whatever - but also develop a disposition suitable to maintaining dominance over workers below and obeying owners above. Schools that deliver folks ready for those two futures fit today's societies. Their graduates fill intended slots. They aren't under- or over-prepared for their tasks. They aren't the best they could be. They are slot fillers, fixated on the cash nexus whether from below or above. INT. VIDEO MONTAGE - DAY New school, home schooling, struggles in existing schools. BERTRAND DELLINGER (V.O.) Many RPS folks host neighborhood schools and initiate summer schools for children as well as for workmates and townsfolk. A few even create new institutions for higher learning. But transforming education is also about battling inside existing schools. Public school teachers, community college teachers, and especially grad students at many colleges and universities, are a bit like nurses in hospitals, eager to be productive workers of a new self managing kind. Massive teacher strikes preceded RPS and paved the way for teacher activism extending into community life. INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT MIGUEL GUEVARA Okay, so what was and is the RPS attitude to schooling? BERTRAND DELLINGER Having education generate confident, capable adults requires having a society that needs confident, capable adults. So educational transformation means students, teachers, and families have to seek better results in their current or new schools while also seeking a new future for society. That was the long term revolutionary aspect of our approach to education. MIGUEL GUEVARA Where has it led? INT. VIDEO MONTAGE - DAY BERTRAND DELLINGER (V.O.) Gains so far include vastly increased involvement of communities in schooling and learning. You probably remember not just the demand to open schools but the occupational and community programs we enacted in thousands of schools, at night, all over the country. Fighting to enlarge school services, before long, we wondered, why ask permission? The schools are there. We should just go in and use them. And so we did. Soon we invited police to take courses and enjoy classes too, which did wonders for dimming their ardor for repressing our school takeovers. Reduction of class size with a steady increase in number of teachers was another a huge gain. We realized higher education too, had to become relevant to people's fulfillment rather than to people passively fitting unfulfilling slots in society. We changed what students had available to read, who they had available to talk with, and therefore what they could attain. MIGUEL GUEVARA What do you think was the turning point toward winning? INT. CHICAGO SCHOOL OCCUPATION MASS MEETING - DAY BERTRAND DELLINGER (V.O.) Perhaps the first occupation of a public school - it was in Chicago - with the ensuing mass meeting to determine what uses the school could be put to at night. We saw people experience that their surroundings should benefit them rather than their having to restrain themselves to fit harsh surroundings, and we knew right away that it would spread. INT. LIVING ROOM COMPUTER LEARNING - DAY BERTRAND DELLINGER (V.O.) Similarly, I think the RPS campaign to provide online curricula that challenged the prevalent social science and history texts had a huge effect. When lots of kids who learned from our online courses became highly knowledgeable about flaws in their lessons and able to think through evidence and logical connections, it put immense pressure on faculty to do better. EXT. NYU STRIKE - DAY BERTRAND DELLINGER (V.O.) Another key happening was when students on the campus where I was teaching, NYU, called a strike that shut down the place, and then reopened it for a full week of nothing but faculty-student discussion of the purpose of education, and it spread. NYU STUDENT We don't just want discussion. We will chair the sessions. We will present ideas. We will convince faculty of our aims and create a new sense of community. Attend our social events. Attend our classes. This strike will end when our campus is reborn. Commit to student faculty power. Reject administrative power. EXT. COLUMBIA UNIV STRIKE - DAY Student leader addresses crowd. COLUMBIA STUDENT We demand preparation for balanced job complexes and solidarity. We reject classist separatism. We want solidarity and self management, not arrogance and profit making. We require renovation of the faculty, curriculum, and particularly the town-gown interface. INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT BERTRAND DELLINGER Campus innovation mirrored public school's being open to the community. Now it was universities providing programs for local residents as well as research and resources for local activism. RPS said instead of education defending system maintenance, it must propel system change. Instead of squashing most students into passive conformity while making the rest elitist, education must address the real needs and potentials of all students. Education must serve desire and insight, not profit. INT. OVAL OFFICE DAY MIGUEL GUEVARA Malcolm, do you remember first considering and then finally deciding to run for President? MALCOLM KING I first thought about it when I won for Senator and every so often thereafter. I saw being Senator as a way to aid movements and help generate new policies and thought of the presidency that way too, only more so. But running for President first became more than day dreaming one night talking with some good friends. INT. LIVING ROOM - NIGHT Malcolm King, Celia Curie, Bill Carmichael, Lydia Luxemburg, and Bertrand Dellinger sit and talk. LYDIA LUXEMBURG It is wonderful to be together, and I hope you won't mind that Bertrand and I see it as an opportunity to consider something we have all heard circulating around RPS. BERTRAND DELLINGER The three of you are the highest elected officials in the organization. Senator of Massachusetts, Governor of California, and Mayor of New York. Should one of you run for President in 2044? BILL HAMPTON Yes, I hear people talking about that, and I get questioned, but is the topic worth the time? RPS is making incredible strides all over society. Why not keep building and when needed pressure the ever-more progressive but non RPS Presidents who take office, without entering the corrupting arena ourselves? The complications of running for office, much less winning, have been ridiculous in New York. Imagine how entangling and corrupting they would be seeking or winning the White House. LYDIA LUXEMBURG You use Gracie Mansion brilliantly. You build movement and you help win movement gains. You aren't entangled. You aren't corrupt. BILL HAMPTON I am not coopted, but I am wiped out. And I am not sure what overall gain it has achieved. Yes, there have been benefits, but if every RPS person in New York government now keeping the current system from unraveling was instead working in grassroots organizing to build our new system, and if receptive though less RPS-ish folks were in the positions we hold, would it be a net loss? Avoiding the corrupting pressures of power, pursuing electability, tallying allies, and especially keeping things running in New York has been bad enough. For the White House, the number of people side tracked from grassroots work would be vastly greater even if the benefits would also be greater. CELIA CURIE But add the outreach, the burst of energy which, if done right, can persist, and, in the event of winning, the consciousness raising and major changes able to be far more quickly and easily implemented with an allied rather than a neutral or hostile President, and I think maybe we have gotten to a point where it would make sense running for the Presidency. But would it undercut focus on popular participation and on building and federating councils? Could we focus as much on a candidate as an election would require, and then as much on governing as winning would require, without losing our participatory aims? BERTRAND DELLINGER If we field a good candidate we could easily attract five and maybe as many as fifteen million full time serious volunteers. While campaigning, we would all work harder and with greater outreach, not less hard and more narrowly, assuming right priorities. We could have massive grass roots funding with no need for big donors. We could win which would be tremendously helpful for every campaign and struggle now underway and for more to follow. We could do it in ways emphasizing and enlarging popular participation. We should try. BILL HAMPTON I wouldn't want to run. New York was very nearly too much for me. CELIA CURIE Don't look at me. I would feel a fool trying. I am an actress turned Governor for my home state. If I won it would be like Reagan or Trump - a famous personality taking office. I don't want that. RPS doesn't need that. MALCOLM KING Well, I think RPS does need you. Your governorship has been exemplary. I think a campaign, done without an iota of compromise, done with an unswerving focus on our full participatory vision, could advance our views enough to be worth the time, effort, and resources it would require. So how about we think about you and I running, should the population continue to agitate for RPS involvement, in whatever order finally makes sense, and table this discussion for now before it gets even more tortured? CELIA CURIE Okay, I will think about VP if you will think about P. LYDIA LUXEMBURG So that's it for now. We have an idea that we can all think about and raise with others. MALCOLM KING (V.O.) So that small gathering was when running first became more than pipe dream gossip. INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY MIGUEL GUEVARA Okay, but then when did you first think you might actually win? MALCOLM KING I came to believe we might elect an RPS President, whoever it might be, back in 2039 during the general strike. EXT. VIDEO MONTAGE GENERAL STRIKE Cities shut down, plants empty, streets empty other than workers marching. State houses attract huge rallies, as do Congress and the White House. Police watch or march. They don't repress. MALCOLM KING (V.O.) I couldn't experience the incredible power of workers stopping the country and showing such an incredible depth of commitment to revolutionizing society and not feel that one part of what was to come would be taking over the government and putting it in service of fundamental change. INT. OVAL OFFICE DAY MALCOLM KING I was amazed, inspired, but also humbled. The crowds were enormous. We could have surged into government offices all over the country, including in Washington. That much was possible, already, in 2039. But what then? We weren't ready to staff all the agencies and handle all the tasks, and in any case we didn't want to usurp government with a unilateral act. We didn't have a full program developed from our base, discussed and refined at anything like the comprehensive scale we would need. I realized that to protect, maintain, and grow participation in rebuilding society we had to win office and then change government in an accountable, participatory way, not by charging into offices with no plan. We didn't have time to do that by 2040, so it would be 2044, earliest. Until then we just had to keep growing and keep creating new institutions and keep winning changes in old ones. We had to build popular support and clarity not only for taking over workplaces, schools, hospitals, and local agencies, but also the national government. I decided it involved enormous risk, but was also essential. MIGUEL GUEVARA So when you ran, you expected to win and you ran to win? MALCOLM KING Rather, we hoped to win and ran to win, with an absolute commitment that we would not compromise or even understate any RPS views to seek votes. MIGUEL GUEVARA Then when did you begin to think you really could win? MALCOLM KING At the first debate in late September when vitriol failed and reason prevailed. INT. PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE - NIGHT Candidates closing statements. Audience responds. OPPOSING CANDIDATE Senator King, how can you possibly have the audacity to stand before the American people and say they should elect you President, you a man who aims to anarchistically overthrow our government, a man who socialistically wants to obliterate our property rights, a man who feminazi-like threatens to topple the family fabric of society, a man who would cravenly reduce our armaments, armed forces, and police to passivity, a man who would reduce our country to pitiful weakness, a man who denies religion and decries individual creativity to advance soul-destroying collectivism? It will be a pleasure to ship you and your movement's pathetic power-envy and psychotic animalistic anger back to the fringe communities that spawned it. I happily cede to you my remaining time. Take as long as you like to reply. Your words will only deepen the horror our audience already feels at your vile intentions. MALCOLM KING No more to say? No more vague, wild assertions? Nothing positive to offer? Okay, I will gladly use your remaining time. You wonder at my wanting to anarchistically overthrow our government. I plead guilty. Unlike you, I don't want to preserve elitist, centralizing, mind-numbingly anti-democratic bureaucratic structures against participation by the American people just to preserve the power of centralizing sycophants like yourself who unaccountably control the destiny of millions. I prefer popular self-management. You decry my socialistically opposing few hands holding productive property and I again plead guilty. Unlike you, I am not enamored of enriching property holders beyond the wildest dreams of past kings. I do not think being born with a deed in your hand is the highest form of human achievement, or that it is any achievement at all. I reject that people like yourself should own society's rivers, lakes, resources, machinery, and places of production, much less rule over them like tin-pot dictators. You ought to be aware, however, that you missed a further target to ridicule. I also oppose a relatively small sector of the population monopolizing empowering work. I want to share that work more equally so everyone is in prepared by their work to participate in social decisions. Unlike you, I also want equitable incomes for all. I want empowering dignified work for all. I want people able to decide their own working lives. I would say it is a wonder that you don't want these gains for all humanity, but your attitude isn't a wonder. It is unmitigated, self-seeking, anti social greed. You say I want to feminazi-like topple the familial fabric of civilization. Why? Because I want young and old people to have a say over their own lives? Because I want families and all living units to freely nurture the next generation without imposing preordained definitions of what boys and girls have to become? Because I want parents and children and extended families to have optimal health care, empowering work, and shared responsibility for their own and for all social life? Because I want women respected and empowered, because I want sexual preference to be whatever free people prefer, all rather than wanting to turn the gender clock back a century - in your misogynistic, homophobic, harassing mode? The human nurturing fabric of society is already at risk. People like you don't see it's deep tears despite your own broken homes and the bedlam so visibly endured by so many all around you. You can't see the truth of our times because your heart is a cash register and your eyes perceive only profit potentials. I want to restore and enrich society's fabric. You want to rape and plunder society. I see all families as repositories of love and sources of wise, confident participation. You see most families as sources of cheap, obedient labor. I see societies, countless communities as allied and equal centers of creative diversity. You see all but your own community as fringe targets to ridicule, restrain, and repress. You also say I would disarm the country, neuter the police, and leave us helpless, because I reject siphoning society's wealth into useless and pointless weapons that, were they used, would destroy all humanity, and because I want properly paid and empowered police that serve the public not power, and I want our children's and our children's children's human potentials to develop free from war, pestilence, coercion and restriction in a world of shared peace and plenty. I am guilty again. You are absolutely right I want all that. You call it making our country weak and defenseless. I call it making our country worth defending. You say I deny religion and sublimate the individual to the collective. Why? Because I want all religions, races, ethnicities, and nationalities to be free of fear of imposition and negation from without and because I want individuals and collectives prepared and in position to self manage their destinies without having to submit to the individual whims of the rich and domineering elites you serve. You are right again. I do reject your racism, your sexism, your homophobia. I am guilty as charged. You say that it was a pleasure to have run against me, and that it will be a pleasure to ship me and Revolutionary Participatory Society's pathetic envy and psychotic animalistic anger back to the fringe dwellings that spawned it. Well, I have some news for you. Those fringe dwellings are the soup kitchens, apartment buildings, private homes, schools, hospitals, ball fields, stages, churches, and workplaces of America. Fringe to you, to your gilded millionaire lifestyle, yes, I suppose so. We will see soon what goes away, and what goes forward. Will the American people vote against RPS and their own futures - and less relevantly against Celia and I - or will they not only elect the two of us, but also continue their steadily escalating popular participation in revolutionizing all sides of all of our lives? After your display here tonight, I too feel ready to predict the outcome. I believe that some folks will vote for you, in fear of make believe demons that you and your media moguls have manufactured. And I believe some will do so to defend their elite interests with no concern for society. But I believe most people are past the confusions and prejudices that have historically allowed the likes of you to win office. You are about as venal as was, say, Donald Trump, 28 years ago. But the problem for you is that the population has come a long way since his time. Your ignorant posturing, your bullying, your pathetically hypocritical life and your self-serving views, all admittedly more eloquently expressed than Trump could ever manage, have lost too much of their deceiving power for you to push anything aside, much less to push aside RPS, the most grassroots, democratic, participatory, multi focused movement this country has ever seen. Good luck with that. I wish I could be a gentleman and say it was a pleasure to run against you. But I can't. It has been a bore, because you are an empty vessel of hate. It has been depressing, because even in one lonely body, such an amalgamation of narcissistic evil as you embrace is seriously depressing to behold. We will soon see how the country decides. Will it be for you, and your hates and fears, and the millionaires and billionaires who pray you will prevail to help them amass still more millions and billions? Or will it be for me, Celia, and RPS, for our hopes and thoughts, and for the women and men, boys and girls, movements and activists who work for our campaign to prevail so we can in turn aid their efforts to build a vastly better future? Time will tell. And this time, I hope - and just open your pathetically closed mind and listen to see it is true - that time is on our side and your day is slip sliding away, pushed off stage by the power of people united. INT. OVAL OFFICE - DAY Interview continues. MIGUEL GUEVARA Okay, then, when were you absolutely sure you would become President? MALCOLM KING I guess it would show appropriate modesty to say only when the ballots were counted, but it would be a lie. I knew for certain we would win at the Houston Rally the second week in October. To have a million people greet us on the Streets of Houston, clearly aware of and supporting our program and not just or even mainly us, I looked at Celia, she looked at me, and we both knew the polling would be a landslide. EXT. NATIONAL CELEBRATIONS - DAY Video montage of celebrations around the country. INT. PRESIDENTIAL PRESS BRIEFING ROOM - DAY Miguel Guevara reports to assembled press. MIGUEL GUEVARA Good morning. As Press Secretary, as usual I have a lot of ground to cover so let's settle down and begin. If you will bear with me a minute, I would like to offer a few words before taking your questions. As you know, yesterday President Malcolm King spoke to the UN General Assembly and the world. His speech was simple, emotional, and blunt. It reflected unfolding events and aspirations. For any of you who may have missed it, in the first part he apologized. In the second part he promised. In the third part he celebrated. In the conclusion he embraced. INT. UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY - DAY Malcolm King Addresses the General Assembly. MALCOLM KING In the name of my country I apologize for our military and fiscal role in international mayhem and injustice from Latin America to Asia and from Europe to Africa. I apologize to Korea, the Philippines, Indonesia, Guyana, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, the Congo/Zaire, Brazil, the Dominican Republic, and Cuba. I apologize to Chile, Greece, East Timor, Nicaragua, Grenada, El Salvador, Libya, Panama, Iraq, Afghanistan, Haiti, Yugoslavia, Iran, Venezuela, Somalia, and Syria. I apologize for our support of dictators, for our exploitative extractions, for our arms shipments and our arms use. I apologize for threats, boycotts, and destruction, for massacring native Americans, for slavery and racism, sexism and sexual predation, for Hiroshima, Nagasaki, and more. INT. BRIEFING ROOM - DAY Guevara continues addressing assembled press. MIGUEL GUEVARA King promised we would together reverse our history of exploitation and violence toward others and in its place enact a new agenda of sharing and respect. He promised we would study war no more and instead foster solidarity and mutual aid with the same energy and effort that we previously put to war making and profit seeking. He promised and evidenced an entirely new and compassionate, internationalist mindset. He celebrated transforming our domestic defining institutions of polity, economy, culture, and kinship, and our relation to the natural environment to remove hierarchies of wealth and power and to attain a sustainable new historical beginning. He promised to aid and learn from all those who have already or who will now take up similar aims, as they deem suitable, worldwide. INT. UN GENERAL ASSEMBLY - DAY MALCOLM KING Amidst our tremendous, sustaining, and enriching diversity, we need to embrace our shared universal humanity. We need to celebrate and apply our shared values of human liberation - solidarity, diversity, equity, self-management, international peace, and environmental balance to all our own countries, each in mutual aid with the rest. We must reject greed and profit seeking. We must reject self aggrandizement and power-wielding. We must usher in a new era of empathy, a new time of joyous exploration of our collective capacities. I embrace all who will do so, and the UN itself as a valuable tool for the task. INT. BRIEFING ROOM - DAY MIGUEL GUEVARA Now, if you have questionsÉ yes, Leslie, why don't you beginÉ EXT. VAST PLAIN - DAY Scrolling collage of photos of interviewees' famous namesakes and of interviewees themselves followed by all credits provides a backdrop for the main title. Musical accompaniment is a medley of excerpts from powerful songs. "RPS - THE NEXT AMERICAN REVOLUTION" "FROM A TIME JUST BEYOND TOMORROW, FROM A PLACE CLONED FROM OUR OWN, IN THIS FILM ACTIVISTS OF THE ORGANIZATION REVOLUTIONARY PARTICIPATORY SOCIETY HAVE DESCRIBED THEIR SUCCESSFUL STRUGGLE TO TRANSFORM THEIR UNITED STATES." "A QUESTION ARISES. WHAT ABOUT OUR TIME, OUR PLACE, OUR UNITED STATES? DO WE WANT IT TO PERSIST AS IT HAS, WITH SOME MODEST CHANGE NOW AND THEN, BUT BASICALLY WITH ITS FEATURES PRESERVED OR EVEN WORSENED? OR DOES RPS-STYLE CHANGE CAUSE US TO FEEL WE CAN WIN ENLIGHTENED EQUITY RATHER THAN DEADLY DECADENCE? DO WE NOW SEE PROMISING POTENTIALS RATHER THAN OPPRESSIVE OBSTACLES? TIME HAS COME TODAY, HASN'T IT?"