24 Jun How I got FUCKED by John Perkins!!! (not in a literal sense)
In 2004,I traveled to Europe to visit a childhood friend who had recently relocated to Prague.
At the time, I had just completed college and was figuring out where I wanted my life to go. The trip happened to coincide to the United States presidential elections; my travels in Europe at the same time as the Presidential debates were occurring.
Everywhere I traveled, it was the same basic questions –
“So what do you think about George Bush? How are you going to vote?”
The voter apathy I saw in the States was in stark contrast to the interest I experienced in traveling Europe. Everywhere I went it was the topic of conversation; both on the mind and tongue of nearly every person.
While in Prague, I went out to dinner at a local pub with my friend and his girlfriend. We were enjoying a laid-back evening when the room got quiet and the television in the corner became the central point of focus. Volume was turned up; the United States Presidential debates were beginning.
I then spent the next hour watching the debates in Czech and observing the reactions of the patrons; glued to the screen, they were fixed on the debate. The experience changed me.
In returning to the States, I began to learn more about the issues; eventually leading to a book by the author John Perkins, Confessions of an Economic Hitman. I became fascinated by the topic of economic development and globalization.
Two years later, I would be living in Virginia, preparing to move to San Diego. At the time, I was renting a room for an old college roommate. Our other roommate had expressed an interest in global policy – and I mentioned the book by John Perkins. He purchased it and also became fascinated by it. As it happened, around the time, I learned that the author would be giving a talk at the Library of Congress. I decided to attend, and as a show of appreciation towards my roommate, I brought along his copy of the book to get autographed.
I went up to the talk, and afterwards stood in line to get the book signed.
“Hi, and your name is?”
“Oh, my name is Jamie but could you sign this book for my friend Raph. He wasn’t able to come up here – he wants to change the world. Its spelled Raph – like the painter.”
He signed it.
I took the book and began walking away.
About ten steps into my departure, I heard a voice,
I turned to see John looking at me.
“You change the world too.”
“Right on John. Right on.”
I said, as I felt myself sigh on the inside – what a responsibility, but also what a powerful message – I too was capable of changing the world too; I had value. I could matter.
I went to the talk to meet the author, and show my friend that I valued him; in return, I learned from John Perkins that I too had value. I would focus on that conversation –
those five words that would change my life
and give me both direction and a sense of value.
EXCERPT from 7 Steps Out Of Wage Slavery