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"The Dialectics of Liberation." As usual, it turned out to be a mistake and a waste of time for him, especially since he was now alone and traveled that way. It was quite uncomfortable at times, when all around him were apparently surrounded by their "brothers and sisters." He hadn't as yet resigned himself to the fact that he was, once again, the loner he had been for most of his prior life, and it was still hard and confusing for him to be working with and for men who didn't particularly care about him or each other as brothers anymore. The hard, nitty-gritty reality of this wouldn't directly strike him with its naked cold-bloodedness for another six or seven months. And so he went on about his business, as if everything was the same between him and his people and without letting on to even himself, much less anyone else, that the San Francisco family of which he was a member was coming apart at its seams.

The business that Emmett went to take care of in New York had to do with money. He fortunately didn't have to spend much time getting what was needed together and sending it back home, using a dozen different money orders to make sure that the few thousand dollars was spread evenly among the people he wired it to--the Free City Collective.

This money he posted back to the people with whom he worked was not raised at any benefit function or charity ball. Even though times were often harder than it was possible to endure and the pickings were nowhere to be found, much less slim, the Free City people never broke their word to themselves by holding a rock concert benefit that would probably have raised enough money to bankroll all their operations for an entire year or more. They never did it, because it was too easy, and more important, they didn't want the common, low-money people or even their children to end up paying for their trip.

The money they always needed was always gotten in the same various ways that Emmett was able to get it during those few July days in New York. That is to say, it was sometimes stolen or sometimes hustled from persons or corporations that didn't miss it anyway. Some of the dollar energy they needed to operate was simply given to them, however, through a tax-deductible middleman by friends who'd made it in a legitimate business enterprise or in one sort of larcenous activity or another, in which case the necessity of using the tax-deductible middleman was eliminated. This money, given to them without any stipulation as to its use, was only taken [end page 417]


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