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Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Hazards of Occupation


Let me state upfront that I support the Occupy Wall Street movement. As a self-professed culture-jammer a la Adbusters, as a social-Democrat cum moderate Independent, and as a goddamn revolutionary activist wannabe, I believe that only through direct action can change be achieved.

I believe that the 99% need to take back their country via a new economic policy in which the rich are taxed consummate to their use of our collective resources, in which the Middle-class can exist comfortable, and in which the poor are given the same opportunities as the rest of us by relieving them of the crushing economic burden they are now carrying on behalf of the top 1%.

However I, like John Oliver, am often at odds with many of the protestors -- simply because they embody such a counter-cultural zeitgeist (that is downright anachronistic) which is incompatible with most of the country, AKA the 99%. But I understand. Normal people simply do not always have the time or resources or privilege to protest for weeks on end. We're just trying to get by on the daily, like a Rick Ross song.

Now, this isn't to say that I'm going to let a little thing like subcultural differences interfere with the overall message that moneyed interests have been controlling our political system for too long, and that it's time we The People take it back for ourselves, for our children, and our children's children.

And apparently that message has gone global.



This all despite hypocritical suspicion by reactionary conservatives (like Eric Cantor), lame attempts to subvert the message (like Mittens), outright hostility to the movement (like Mr. I-Don't-Have-The-Facts-To-Back-This-Up-Because-I'm-Full-Of-Shit Black Walnut), and despite police brutality (like Mr. Pepper Spray and his friend excessive use of force),

But the reality is that OWS is about more than the financial collapse, our FUBAR economic policy, our terrible tax code, big business loop-holes, corporate personhood, corruption of our political system by unlimited campaign donations from corporations, or even the reactionary conservative backlash attempting take away everything most Americans hold dear, from bodily autonomy to PBS.

Occupy Wall Street is about Americans deciding, in the most simple, democratic, and revolutionary way possible that this is our country, and we won't let the 1% decide how the other 99% of us should live. This is about taking back our freedom to live the American dream we all grew up believing in.

It's time we make that dream a reality.



Cheers

8 footnotes:

Mira said...

I was hoping somebody would write about this. Heck, I was hoping you'd blog about it.

I must say, while this movement is hardly perfect (like any revolution), I am proud about it. I mean, it's the first time since I was maybe 6 that I am proud for the Americans (other than on the individual basis).

Finally, the right things are happening. And no, it's not going to be perfect, and soon they will start fighting each other, from the inside (that's how it goes with all the movements and the revolutions). Maybe they won't accomplish a single thing. But the mere idea the people are out there, that they're doing this, is very encouraging.

I am just sorry my country doesn't have strength for this. We are tired of unsuccessful revolutions and either apathetic or heading in the radical right winged direction (which I'm not a fan of). We're just tired of all the revolutions. Which is a shame.

Zek J Evets said...

Mira,

Haha, well it took a while, but I did finally get around to the topic. I'm so touched that you're *proud* f us. (Thanks mom! Haha, kidding.)

I think the movement has the potential to do all the things you mentioned, but honestly it's more in danger of fizzling out than anything else. We Americans can be so fickle sometimes.

But who knows? Maybe the OWS going global will help. Certainly people have already been comparing what's going on in the Eurozone to the Arab Spring. I mean, Greece had the Indignant Citizens Movement, Spain has the 15-M, Portugal has the Desperate Generation, and even Iceland's Kitchenware Revolution.

The whole world is like a pot of boiling water, steadily getting closer and closer to boiling over. Unless someone let's the steam out.

lifeexplorerdiscovery said...

Its hard for me to take this movement seriously because its so unorganized and the politics are a little too liberal for my tastes.

I hate the tea party more than any other human being on this planet, but even I'll say they were organized in a way that really worked to their benefit. OWS on the other hand, uses old school tactics that keep getting them into trouble.

Letting hippies, commies, and the weirder liberal faction be the face of the movement is doing a disservice to the 99% they are representing.

foosrock! said...

I agree with lifeexplorerdiscovery: ways too liberal for my taste. It has spread here in ZH and mostly young people who're topless, showing off their droopy breasts and sick-packs. Our banks are the biggest employers in my adopted country and while I agree that we must stamp out the greed, ESPECIALLY if government is bailing out these institutions and the monies are used instead to pay out big bonuses to the higher echelons, we musn't look a gift horse in the mouth either, no?. They ARE our employers, protest by all means, but please, with some propriety. This is not a "legalise marijuana" demo!!!.

Not impressed at the moment.

Zek J Evets said...

lifeexplorediscovery,

So you don't like the movement because they're liberal and not organized enough? Hmm, okay.

Would it matter that these protestors do not represent any political party, but they do represent the 99% of people which include you & me?

And would it matter that they're actually quite organized through twitter, facebook, youtube, and have simultaneous movements across the globe?

But I find it interesting that you're more worried about "hippies" and "commies" like a 1950's McCarthyite than people who are doing widespread harm to our way of life through greed and corruption.

Zek J Evets said...

foosrock!,

I think you might be talking out both sides of your mouth here... how can we hold the top 1% accountable without offending their apparently delicate guilty feelings of screwing over the other 99% of us?

I mean, protest with "propriety"? Haha, it just sounds so... wishy-washy.

lifeexplorerdiscovery said...

Actually I am a Democrat, a moderate, not a liberal. And no, the people in that movement do not represent me. If I were to protest, I wouldn't act the way they do. And being organized through the web is not enough. They should follow in the tea party's steps, even though TP's messages were hateful and inaccurate, they got their point across and took considerable political power.

I never said I hated the message coming from OWS, its who its coming from and how its coming that keeps the movement from being what it could be.

foosrock! said...

It's not wishy-washy to want to dialogue in the form of a decent protest. Decent meaning: keeping your clothes on, avoiding the use of openly smoking marijuana etc. This is not the way to try to attract people to support your cause. Sensationalism at it's worst. They're not even original!.

PS: Trust these bankers have seen it all. Hardly stodgy, more dodgy, so some naked TnA wouldn't faze them, methinks.