Friday, January 6, 2012

Do You Get Occupy At All?


  1. I think Drew Magary gets it (both in defining its supporters and its detractors):

  2. Trolling's just another word for nothin' left to lose.

    Stereotypes happen. Stephen Colbert is funny. "Including having rules in place to ensure that the movement remains completely rudderless" could be rules in place to make sure the rudder stays firm and in the right hands.

  3. "Trolling's just another word for nothin' left to lose."

    I suppose you haven't read your Orwell lately, but it would behoove you to speak in plain English. What, precisely, does this mean? If what you're saying is that Occupy's tactics are evidence of people with nothing left to lose, it's frankly insulting to folks who (a) really did have nothing left to lose and (b) organized significantly more effective protest movements. On (a), I want to be clear that I'm not suggesting the movement isn't pure of heart, or that I'm repeating that tired "protesters on welfare/mommy and daddy's money" trope. What I'm saying is that there's a difference between modern income inequality and British imperialism (Gandhi), or apartheid (King/Mandela), or even years of authoritarianism (Tahrir), and that difference appears to correlate with positive outcomes arising out of protest movements (they got a deposed dictator, you got BofA to drop debit fees). Whether correlation is causation is far from clear, but I wouldn't bet against it.

    "Rules in place to make sure the rudder stays firm and in the right hands."

    Evidence? Unless your sail plan looks like a Mobius strip, I'm not sure this washes. Put another way, there's no other way to judge a protest movement than by its results, and by that metric y'all appear to be stuck in neutral. If you're judging it by another metric, you're doing it wrong. If you believe you have achieved much, it would be important to lay that out (and query, if you believe that and I don't, where the communication breakdown occurred).

    I'm sorry, I'm being very harsh (it doesn't help that a certain evangelical virgin just tore my heart out), and I don't want you to think I don't sympathize. I do. And I don't want you to stop. I had very high hopes when this all started. But it appears that "form" is sitting atop Mt. Washington with "substance" down in the parking lot by Bessemer Square.

  4. For openers, I think there's something in the parable of the frog that doesn't realize it's in a pot that's heating up and eventually being cooked. There are worlds of difference between what's going on here versus elsewhere and/or elsewhen, but one thing they have in common is a realization and conviction that we each only have one life to live, and too many people are living lives way out of proportion from ones they have the potential to experience in a nation that has managed to be this productive (or at least this good at extracting wealth). And just in case the "privileged lazy kids" argument raises its hackneyed head elsewhere, bear in mind that aside from a surprising amount of diversity, there's a fair bit of empathy and outright rage regarding the plight of others than our own personal selves.

    I think three months is a little short to start suggesting the movement has stalled out, especially when one backs up and considers the shifts in the national agenda and the Overton window. Especially remembering it's freezing cold in much of the nation and the movement is almost self-avowedly in "hibernation" everywhere but here. Around the one year mark, of course, I'll be impatient to see more solid accomplishments. A surprising number of people are looking at a much longer timeline -- like, there'll be time enough for counting when the dealin's done.

    I think I share your concerns about form vs. substance, but add only that A) there's a fair bit of substance out there if you peer elsewhere than where the obvious form is and B) we've ridden this specific tactic so long to decent success, we kind of owe it to the blueprint and to the forebears to let it play out. We're the ones still in uncharted waters, may as well keep riding 'till we fall off the edge or encounter some crazy sea serpent.

  5. The level of self aggrandizement I'm reading here
    is ridiculous. You seem to find your illegal seizure of
    private property the portent of some nation
    changing movement. You have people in your group
    getting paid to protest. Sounds like CAPITALISM
    to me. The Judge hearing your case is a progressive
    activist. Just the delays in getting to court and
    her failure to make a speedy decision shows a pro
    -OWS bias. There is no substance to this and there
    is no criteria to determine success. Fold your tents,
    pack your stuff and leave!

  6. "The Judge hearing your case is a progressive activist."


  7. research grasshopper research

  8. Yeah, these days research means "Google" and I've got bupkis.