The Anti-Suit

The Anti-Suit

The suit. It is said to project an image of respectability and prestige. Now, think of politicians, lawyers and businessmen. Respectable - hardly, prestigious - maybe. For many, the suit is a symbol of deception, corruption and conformity. Also, what do you make of this "anti-suit"?

It is honorable to work. Nobody questions that. But, what is shameful is that 51 percent of all American workers made less than $30,000 last year - most, barely at a subsistence level. Why do people put up with it? Here's something to consider:
  • C. Wright Mills knew all the elite needed to destroy the comradery of the labor classes was to give everyone a desk: the illusion of merit. The rise of white collar labor perfectly paralleled the collapse of labor unions and factory life because people were more easily isolated.

    In ancient Rome the senate considered mandating slaves wear a required form of clothing that would indicate who was a free man and who wasn't. They decided such an obvious display would be counterproductive; the slaves would realize their multitude and unite against the establishment.

    Today, we have such a required form of clothing. It's called a suit. The trick is that our identifying marks are seen as a sign of prestige! To enslave a population, simply create the illusion that exploitative and self-destructive behaviors are prestigious and you will have people lining up to participate. And if your entire society is built on a crumbling foundation of dwindling self-worth, the promise of that prestige becomes even more desirable.

  • --S.J. Kerrigan
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