Call to Action: #OCCUPYWALLSTREET 4

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Call to Action: #OCCUPYWALLSTREET 4

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RevolutionPlease RevolutionPlease's picture

Previous Thread:

http://rabble.ca/babble/activism/call-action-occupywallstreet-3

Interesting study:

http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1075856--surprise-banks-really-d...

Quote:

Researchers at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich, also known as ETH, set out to figure out who controls the world’s wealth, and whether the belief that it’s in the hands of a few powerful corporations is true.

Their study says it’s been hard to prove because many companies “exert control over other firms via a web of direct and indirect ownership relations which extends over many countries.”

...

“This means that they do not carry out their business in isolation but, on the contrary, they are tied together in an extremely entangled web of control.”

Barclays tops the list and financial institutions in the top 10 include Capital Group Companies Inc., State Street Corp., JP Morgan Chase & Co., UBS AG and Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Oakland Police fire tear gas on #occupy protestors

Quote:
While President Obama was telling the small crowd at a $7500-a-plate fundraiser in San Francisco that “Change is possible,” Pooda Miller was across the bay trying to get her plate back from the Oakland Police Department. “They came, pulled out rifles, shot us up with tear gas and took all our stuff,” said Miller, at an afternoon rally condemning the violent evacuation of more than 170 peaceful, unarmed Occupy Oaklanders by 500 heavily-armed members of the Oakland Police Department and other local departments yesterday morning.

With a long metal police fence separating Miller and other members of Occupy Oakland from their confiscated items—tents, water, food, clothes, medicine, plates—and now possessed by the police, Miller grabbed a big blue and white bullhorn that looked like it was almost half of her 4-foot, 5-inch frame. “Give us our stuff back! It don’t belong to you!” yelled Miller, who also expressed relief that her baby was not camped out with her that morning.

The sound of Miller’s ire shot across the protective masks of all of the officers standing at alert on the other side of the metal police fence, but her loudest, most acidic anger was saved for the baton-wielding officer who, like herself and other officers, was a young African-American woman.

“Who are you serving?” screamed Miller at the top of her high pitched voice, turned raspy from hours of denouncing. “You’re being used. You’re getting paid with our tax money to put down your own people! Why are you doing this to your own people?”

 

KenS

George Lakoff: A framing memo for Occupy Wall Street

Above all: Frame yourselves before others frame you.

Quote:
I think it is a good thing that the occupation movement is not making specific policy demands. If it did, the movement would become about those demands. If the demands were not met, the movement would be seen as having failed.

It seems to me that the OWS movement is moral in nature, that occupiers want the country to change its moral focus. It is easy to find useful policies; hundreds have been suggested. It is harder to find a moral focus and stick to it.

 

deb93

Strange that the powers that be haven't figured out that the more they attack protesters the more public support rises.

It's disgusting that the police do such violence to ordinary people who expose the truth of power and control.

It was disgusting in Toronto last year ... but now they're meek as lambs. :)

Exposing the violence of the state has its benefits in the long run.

KenS

That conterproductivity of attacks is true only when protesters have substantial sympathy outside the predictable circles.

In turn, that only happens when the demands are deemed "reasonable".

allah

In the present case I don't think there are articulated demands are there?

KenS

No there are not . So take my use of 'demands' in that sentence as broad and general.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Quote:
But now for the first time there is an explicit movement to confront The Party of Wall Street and its unalloyed money power. The “street” in Wall Street is being occupied – oh horror upon horrors – by others! Spreading from city to city, the tactics of Occupy Wall Street are to take a central public space, a park or a square, close to where many of the levers of power are centered, and by putting human bodies in that place convert public space into a political commons, a place for open discussion and debate over what that power is doing and how best to oppose its reach. This tactic, most conspicuously re-animated in the noble and on-going struggles centered on Tahrir Square in Cairo, has spread across the world (Plaza del Sol in Madrid, Syntagma Square in Athens, now the steps of Saint Paul in London as well as Wall Street itself). It shows us that the collective power of bodies in public space is still the most effective instrument of opposition when all other means of access are blocked. What Tahrir Square showed to the world was an obvious truth: that it is bodies on the street and in the squares not the babble of sentiments on twitter or facebook that really matter.

The aim of this movement in the United States is simple. It says: “We the people are determined to take back our country from the moneyed powers that currently run it. Our aim is to prove Warren Buffett wrong. His class, the rich, shall no longer rule unchallenged nor automatically inherit the earth. Nor is his class, the rich, always destined to win.”

[url=http://davidharvey.org/2011/10/rebels-on-the-street-the-party-of-wall-st... Harvey[/url]

NDPP

Protest Smearing of Occupy Wall Street, Palestine Solidarity Movement As 'Anti-Semitic'

http://electronicintifada.net/blog/maureen/protest-smearing-occupy-wall-...

"In a new segment broadcast Wednesday night by ABC 7 News in Chicago, reporter Chuck Goudie claims that there is ' a vein of anti-semitism flowing through the movement' that has Jewish leaders concerned.  I and other activists have  responded to this vile smearing attack on the Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement, and the Palestinian Solidarity Movement more generally..."

A call to action to protest this attack is below...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[url=http://www.commondreams.org/view/2011/10/31-3]Is Capitalism Losing the Debate?[/url]

Quote:
How did this happen? Simple, false assumptions of the dominant powers in this country were challenged and examined.

There was a conversation in almost every American household. Some were hotly contested with families torn apart.

Historical hindsight confirms the best reform proposals in American history have come from socially conscious mass movements. They have not come from traditional leaders positioned inside the political machinery that has so consistently and miserably failed us.

So it was in my days as a young activist.

In the end, the social, economic and political demands of the popular mass movements thoroughly overcame retrograde “Jim Crow” prejudices and reactionary “cold war” misrepresentations.

The massively extensive political dialogue that broke out in this country changed America.

For a precious few years, the lives of national minorities, women and gays actually improved and, significantly, lives were also saved as it became more difficult for the United States to invade countries using illegitimate pretexts and lies.

Extensive political debate can have a greater impact today because the economic and social crisis is deeper. Again, we have an opportunity to change our country and the world.

Slumberjack

Quote:
Historical hindsight confirms the best reform proposals in American history have come from socially conscious mass movements. They have not come from traditional leaders positioned inside the political machinery that has so consistently and miserably failed us.

For a precious few years, the lives of national minorities, women and gays actually improved and, significantly, lives were also saved as it became more difficult for the United States to invade countries using illegitimate pretexts and lies.

I don't know that it could be described as much of an improvement if systemic injustices merely shifted over time from blatantly overt to barely covert, as a technique in fact that has evolved from the beginning to enable deniability among the dominant institutions and its supporters.  And while it does ring true to say that the various products contained by the political machinery bear many striking similarities, you just have to wonder about the origins of these dreams being shared in common to conclude that lives were saved because of the added difficulty in coming up with pretexts for war.

NDPP

Occupy Wall Street Not Palestine

http://www.palestinechronicle.com/view_article_details.php?id=17208

"As pro-Palestinian discourse begins to make its voice heard in the worldwide Occupy Wall Street movement, right-wing organizations and individuals in the United States, including the Republican National Committee and the Emergency Committee for Israel, have denounced the protests as anti-Semitic and anti-Israel.."

 

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

The people. United. Will never be defeated. #occupyoakland

NDPP

Spokes Councils: A Chill Descends On Occupy Wall Street

http://www.countercurrents.org/tucker041111.htm

"The tangled purse strings..."

NDPP

US Authorities Step Up Nationwide Crackdown on Occupy Protests

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2011/nov2011/prot-n14.shtml

"City governments and police across the US have stepped up their attacks on Occupy movement encampments. Using a variety of pretexts - ordinances against sleeping in city parks, alleged health and sanitation violations, unrelated crimes, etc - the authorities are attempting to criminalize the protests..."

ditto for Canada

Slumberjack

This video sums up power's response to the Occupy movement.

Occupy Cal 11/9/11 PART 1

NDPP

Occupy Crackdowns Coordinated with Federal Law Enforcement Officials

http://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/316-20/8432-occupy-crackdow...

"But in a recent interview with BBC, Oakland Mayor Jean Quan mentioned she was on a conference call just before the crackdowns began..."

Wonder if there were any Canadian cities involved here...?

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Call to action: on November 17, we are everywhere!

by Pedro Noel on November 17, 2011

On Tuesday, Occupy Wall Street was evicted. Tomorrow, we will fight back during a global day of action coinciding with International Student Day.

A call to action from United for Global Change and Occupy Wall St.

http://roarmag.org/2011/11/call-to-action-on-november-17-we-are-everywhere/

Click here for the complete program.

NDPP

Elderly and Pregnant Attacked at OWS (and vid)

http://rt.com/usa/nws/police-occupy-seattle-francisco-503/

"While eyes and ears across the globe were watching Occupy Wall Street protesters reclaim New York's Zuccotti Park, Tuesday night, on the other side of the US police brutally cracked down on other OWS encampments in San Francisco and Seattle. 'Tell the Mayor and the Chief of Police that police are supposed to serve and protect the community and keep the peace, not attack people,' responded Occupy Seattle.."

Once again, the theory does not accord with observed practices...

'Crackdown On OWS A Strategic Mistake' (and vid)

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/210631.html

interview with Chip Pitts political commentator

BREAKING:

Police have attacked NY OWS protesters: beatings and arrests...

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[url=http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/arts-post/post/occupys-84-year-old-p...'s 84-year-old pepper spray victim: Is this the most iconic image of the movement?[/url]

by Maura Judkis

When Occupy marched in downtown Seattle on Tuesday night, a priest, a pregnant teenager and an 84-year-old community activist were doused in pepper spray. Although there have been many striking images of violence and peace in Occupy encampments, and many faces of the movement, none may be as immediately striking as this image of Dorli Rainey, taken by Joshua Trujillo.


Seattle activist Dorli Rainey, 84, reacts after being hit with pepper spray during an Occupy Seattle protest on Nov. 15 at Westlake Park in Seattle. (Joshua Trujillo - AP)

Rainey’s direct gaze at the camera as her face drips with pepper spray is a haunting, cinematic image of brutality, emphasized even more by the chiaroscuro of dark gloved hands holding her head up to lead her to safety. Dashiell Bennett of the Atlantic has speculated that this image may become the defining one of Occupy unrest.

Slumberjack

It just might be.  For comparative purposes though, and in all fairness, we should be examining pictures of cops being helped away from the confrontations.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

An Anglican bishop offers a note of hope. The Media and the "Occupy Movement"

 

The Occupy Movement is entering into an important phase. In many of the cities where the protests have taken place local governmental authorities have decided to close down the tent villages. The media is full of subtle criticism portraying the protests as needing leadership, losing momentum and lacking a clear message. The journalists imply that the work is coming to an end and was all for naught.

It is not surprising that many in the media portray it in this way. What they want to report is what they are used to seeing: confrontation, anger and one side winning the public relations battle. What the journalists and the media need to understand is that the protesters have already won their point. With the cry, "We are the other 99%", they have captured the reality of the Age of Greed and have revealed clearly the total lack of political and economic leadership that we have in the "developed world". We are now all hostages to an economic system which is totally unjust and which increasingly benefits only the rich.

Despite the  fact that many or even most of the tent villages will be gone by Christmas, the spirit of this movement will not die, it will find a new focus and a new message to share. If anything has been proven by these actions surely the most important gain has been for our young people to have found their political voice and sense of purpose. We saw in the recent federal election an increase in interest among young people. Now we have witnessed the birth of a significant engagement that will, I believe lead to a greater commitment to be involved in the affairs of our community, to the benefit of the 99%. It couldn't come at a better time.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Yo No Me Muevo / I’m not Moving, Hypocrisy at its best (video)

http://takethesquare.net/2011/11/16/yo-no-me-muevo-im-not-moving-hypocri...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..the wall street occupy is out on the street. lots of stuff going on including police represion. check out their site for the latest.
Thousands Occupy Wall Street: All Entry Points to New York Stock Exchange Blockaded

Thousands marched on Wall Street this morning, blockading all entry points to the New York Stock Exchange. 'People's mics' have been breaking out at barricades, with participants sharing stories of struggling in an unfair economy.

"I paid taxes and took care of my responsibility, and I'm struggling," said participant, Leah Lackner, 27, who had taken the day off work as a mental health counselor to join the protest. Her sign read: "I played by the rules."

http://occupywallst.org/

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Bank Of America Dumps $75 Trillion In Derivatives On U.S. Taxpayers With Federal Approval

Bloomberg reports that Bank of America (BAC) has shifted about $22 trillion worth of derivative obligations from Merrill Lynch and the BAC holding company to the FDIC insured retail deposit division. Along with this information came the revelation that the FDIC insured unit was already stuffed with $53 trillion worth of these potentially toxic obligations, making a total of $75 trillion.....

http://seekingalpha.com/article/301260-bank-of-america-dumps-75-trillion...

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Thousands gather near Foley Square as Occupy Wall Street protests swell

NEW YORK — Thousands of protesters are gathering near Foley Square in lower Manhattan as today's Occupy Wall Street "International Day of Action" continues.

Al-Jazeera English reporter Cath Turner estimates the crowd has swelled to around 10,000 people...

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2011/11/thousands_gather_near_foley_sq....

Unionist

[url=http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-15784439]Mass arrests[/url]

Quote:
More than 200 people have been arrested, most of them in New York as trouble flared near the stock exchange.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Over 30,000 take Foley Square, Brooklyn Bridge.

Posted 6 hours ago on Nov. 17, 2011, 4:41 p.m. EST by OccupyWallSt

At 3PM, thousands of students, workers, and other supporters gathered in Union Square chanting "Shut the city down!" and using the People's Mic to share stories of how banks and corporate greed have impacted the 99%. Simultaneously, Occupiers took to multiple subway stations in all five boroughs....

NDPP

Brutal Arrests of OWS Protests (and vid)

http://rt.com/news/ows-protest-violence-police-585/

"the chaos seems to be spinning out of control.."

 

NYPD Blasts LRAD Sound Cannons at OWS (and vid)

http://rt.com/news/ows-police-sound-canons-603/

the message is support your friendly local OWS - don't let this go down Canada...!

 

NDPP

Blood on Wall St: Violent OWS Arrests (and vid)

http://rt.com/news/bloody-story-brendan-watts-617

 

'Civil Disobedience Is The Only Way To Go' (and vid)

http://rt.com/news/police-protests-occupy-response-621/

 

'US Plans to Suppress OWS Protesters' (and vid)

http://www.presstv.ir/detail/210790.html

"The US government is making 'coordinated efforts' aimed at suppressing the 'Occupy' movement that has spread across the country, an American journalist, Dave Lindorff, says.."

Slumberjack

Rebellion in the Air?

Quote:
...the enemy of the public is being given a face.  No longer is it just a bunch of unidentified and overly aggressive cops. Now it's clear that it is the mayors, and whoever it is in the background who is giving them their marching orders, who are instructing the cops to go in and bust heads.

Mayor Bloomberg -- a man reportedly worth $19.5 billion, up a staggering $1.5 billion over the last year while other Americans are becoming poorer -- is in fact the perfect symbol of what is wrong with today's America. Having this greedy "one percenter" issue the marching orders to the police in New York makes it absolutely clear what this repression is about.

With this wave of assaults, the Occupation Movement is being forced to shift gears -- to move out of the cramped spaces to which it has been confined and to become an uprising for economic justice, instead of just an occupation as an act of protest. Zuccotti has been reoccupied, but the movement is busting out of the police barricades that surround the square.

Perhaps a group of young musicians standing on a street corner at 66th and Broadway just off Lincoln Square in New York City, doing a "mic check" routine at 11 pm the evening after the police assault on Zuccotti Plaza, said it best with their sign, which read: "Nostalgia for the Student Protests of the Past Dies Here!"

The '60s are over. It's the '10s now and rebellion is in the air.

Over and apparently forgotten.  Didn't cities team with counterattacks against the police, and wasn't fire put to terrible use, just about everywhere it seemed in those days?  Nowadays you'd have to travel to certain European destinations to get a whiff of that.  He must have written it from there.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

[url=http://socialistworker.org/2011/11/14/do-as-i-say-not-as-i-do]Do as I say, not as I do[/url]

Quote:
There has been no shortage of crocodile tears from the U.S. political establishment about the violence against protesters in Syria and Iran. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama have taken turns condemning the brutal suppression of movements for social justice in those countries....

Meanwhile, the absolute silence from the White House regarding the growing repression against peaceful demonstrators in this country speaks volumes....

We can't let the political representatives of the 1 percent denounce harsh measures against civilians if it suits them, while they condone the same repression if the protests are directed against them.

rbil

M. Spector wrote:

[url=http://socialistworker.org/2011/11/14/do-as-i-say-not-as-i-do]Do as I say, not as I do[/url]

Quote:
There has been no shortage of crocodile tears from the U.S. political establishment about the violence against protesters in Syria and Iran. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama have taken turns condemning the brutal suppression of movements for social justice in those countries....

Meanwhile, the absolute silence from the White House regarding the growing repression against peaceful demonstrators in this country speaks volumes....

We can't let the political representatives of the 1 percent denounce harsh measures against civilians if it suits them, while they condone the same repression if the protests are directed against them.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjfhOPCPJnE&feature=youtu.be

NDPP

A Few 'Pre-Revolutionary' Thoughts I Had  - by Arundhati Roy (and vid)

http://www.opednews.com/articles/a-few-pre-revolutionary--by-Arundhati-R...

"What you have achieved since September 17 when the Occupy movement began in the United States, is to introduce a new imagination, a new political language into the heart of empire. You have re-introduced the right to dream into a system that tried to turn everybody into Zombies, mesmerized into equating mindless consumerism with happiness and fulfillment.

As a writer, let me tell you, this is an immense achievement. And I cannot thank you enough..."

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Self-sufficient Wall Street: the beginning of chapter two

Quote:

The importance of self-sufficiency and sustainability were incorporated into the Occupy movement’s grassroots democratic system from the beginning, as one of the movement’s working groups. Practical, sustainable solutions — many of which fine-tuned by the permaculture movement — were implemented almost immediately, and quickly snowballed into developed systems....

http://roarmag.org/2011/11/self-sufficient-wall-street-the-beginning-of-...

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Quote:
Behind the police, directly or indirectly, stands that bureaucratic monster of post-9/11 domestic "safety," the Department of Homeland Security.  And behind both of them, without a doubt, that giant tangle of agencies -- 17 in all -- with an $80 billion-plus budget that go under the rubric of “intelligence” and dwarf the intelligence bureaucracy of the Cold War era, when the U.S. actually had an enemy worth speaking of.

All of this is the spawn of the 9/11 moment, which is why, on November 15th when the NYPD entered the encampment at Zuccotti Park, a weaponless and peaceable spot filled with sleeping activists and the homeless, they used pepper spray, ripped and tore down everything, and tossed all 4,000 books from the OWS “library” into a dumpster, damaging or mangling most of them.  Books couldn’t escape the state’s violence, nor could the library’s tent, bookshelves, chairs, computers, periodicals, and archives.  Even librarians were arrested

Much was literally trashed and, though “books are pretty sturdy objects,” as one Zuccotti Park librarian wrote me, “when you throw them into a dumpster a lot of them get destroyed. We have recovered about one third of our books and of that number many are far too damaged to re-circulate.”  Novelist Salman Rushdie tweeted a perfectly reasonable response to the police action: “Please explain the difference between burning books and throwing thousands in the trash and destroying them.”

Stop for a moment and imagine what the headlines here would have been like if Iranian or Chinese police had broken into a peaceful oppositional encampment and literally trashed its library without a second thought.  The barbarians!  Imagine what a field day the pundits would have had.  Imagine what Fox News would have said.

Nothing, of course, had to be this way.  That it was makes it part of the official legacy of 9/11 and Osama bin Laden.  In the wake of that day, this is what Washington did to itself, and so to us.  In the process, it did one other thing: it put the Constitution in the dumpster.

[url=http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/175471/tomgram%3a_rebecca_solnit%2c_ms._... Engelhardt[/url]

Fidel

Michael Hudson wrote:
Fifty years ago an old socialist told me that revolutions happen when people just get tired of being afraid. In today's case the revolution may grow nearer when people get over being depressed and stop blaming themselves. They come to think that we are all in this together - and if this is the case, there must be something wrong with the way the economy is organized.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..a very well done video.
Anonymous - Message to Occupy the World 11-18-11

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VqWdyM91hFA

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Occupy Homes lauds a radical new phase for the movement

The drive to stop foreclosures and squat bank property marks a radical shift from the occupation of public space to the public repossession of private property.

The Occupy movement is ratcheting up the resistance. Inspired by the Spanish indignados, this Tuesday activists all over the United States will be taking the struggle indoors: to the homes of poor families who are under threat of being evicted by large and powerful Wall Street banks. The move from occupying public space to reclaiming private property marks a radical escalation of civil disobedience, striking the capitalist system right at its institutional heart....

http://roarmag.org/2011/12/occupy-our-homes-banks-homes-foreclosures/

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Proceeds from 'Occupy This Album' will benefit movement

 

 

Occupy Wall Street now has an A-list soundtrack: the compilation Occupy This Album, which was announced today and will be released sometime this spring. The record will feature music from Debbie Harry, Jackson Browne, Yoko Ono, Third Eye Blind, Crosby and Nash and many more. Several of the contributors, including Joan Baez and Crosby and Nash, performed at the New York OWS site while it was still active.

 

 

 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

On Founders and Keepers of Occupy Wall Street

Last week, a power struggle within an Occupy collective emerged into the public realm when one member took sole ownership of the @OccupyWallSt twitter handle and began to issue calls to action and reflections on the history of the movement.

The act generated quite a bit of controversy among Occupy activists who feel, as I do, a strong visceral connection to a movement which has at every juncture defied formal leadership or hierarchy. Media outlets like Buzzfeed proclaimed last week’s outburst of public infighting to be the “final implosion” of Occupy, while bloggers debated its causes and implications: lack of consensus, over-reliance on consensus, consolidation of Occupy media properties, and more.

As the controversy ricochets across our still-vibrant networks, I write here to offer my own perspective on what immediate lessons can be learned from the debacle.....

http://www.occupy.com/article/founders-and-keepers-occupy-wall-street

NDPP

2014 Worldwide Wave of Action For Truth, Justice, Freedom (and vid)

http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/02/mlks-spirit-rises-2014-worldwide-...

Stop US Oligarchic 1% Crimes

 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Undoing the Politics of Powerlessness

quote:

We need to replace judgment and self-righteousness with curiosity and compassion. Those are the tools that will help us support each other in the face of the crises ahead, and they are the qualities we will need in order to truly understand the very many people we still need to organize. They will help us become facilitators instead of polemicists, teach us to build instead of tear apart. Flexing these new muscles, we must convert a politic that punishes imperfection into one that uses everything at its fingertips to win — that compels each and every one of us to turn our gifts into weapons for the sake of freedom. We need to build groups — collectives, organizations, affinity groups, whatever — because groups are what keep us in the movement, they’re what keep movement moments going, where we transform, how we fight, and the best way to hold each other accountable to the long struggle for liberation. We need to win small victories that open up space for bigger ones, and we must celebrate them, because that’s the best inoculation against a politic based in fear that nothing is winnable. We have to develop powerful visions for the world we want, so we can put those small victories inside a broader strategy that strikes at the roots of the systems we face. We must all engage in the hard and transformational work to become our most powerful selves; after all, it is truly the only way we even stand a chance.

Unionist

Great excerpt, epaulo, but wow, there's way more in that long article that needs to be absorbed and digested and re-read. I'm thinking it needs its own thread.

Like this:

Quote:

The Politics of Powerlessness

Many of us left that moment bitter, depressed, heart-broken. Some of that is predictable, maybe, on the downward spiral from such a high. Some of it was the product of a lot of young folks experiencing their first tastes of movement and thinking the result was going to be a revolution. But some of it was specific to this toxicity, the sudden snapping of this unbelievable tight rope we had been racing across.

From there, I went wandering. I bumped straight into the movement’s social media call-out culture, where people demonstrate how radical they are by destroying one another. It felt like walking into a high school locker room. In this universe, we insist on perfect politics and perfect language, to the exclusion of experimentation, learning, or constructive critique. We wear our outsiderness as a badge of pride, knowing that saying the right thing trumps doing anything at all. No one is ever good enough for us — not progressive celebrities who don’t get the whole picture, not your Facebook friend who doesn’t quite get why we say Black Lives Matter instead of All Lives Matter, not your cousin who mourned the deaths in Paris without saying an equal number of words about those in Beirut. Instead of organizing these people, we attack them. We tear down rather than teach each other, and pick apart instead of building on top of what we have.

And this (which I'm still thinking about...):

Quote:
For example, the mantra of leaderlessness came from a genuine desire to avoid classic pitfalls into hierarchy, but it was, at the same time, a farce, and divorced from any sense of collective structure or care for group culture. It foreclosed on the possibility of holding emerging leaders accountable, created a situation in which real leaders (whether worthy or not) went to the shadows instead of the square, and made it impossible to really develop one another (how, really, could we train new leaders if there weren’t supposed to be any in the first place?). Similarly, the refusal to articulate demands was brilliant in opening radical possibilities and sparking the popular imagination, but it also meant we didn’t have a shared goal, meant the word winning wasn’t even part of the movement’s lexicon. In many ways, it was an expression of a fear of actually saying something and taking responsibility for it, and it encouraged the often-repeated delusion that we didn’t even want anything our enemy had to give, that Wall Street and the State didn’t have any power over us. The vigilance against co-option came from honest history of movements falling prey to powerful forces hoping to dull or divert their aims; but it ultimately became a paranoia more than anything else, a tragic misunderstanding of the playing field and what it was going to take to build popular power. Instead of welcoming other progressive forces and actually co-opting them, purists shamed “liberals,” cultivated a radical macho culture more focused on big speeches at assemblies and arrests in the streets than the hard organizing behind the scenes, and turned Occupy into a fringe identity that only a few people could really claim to the exclusion of the hundreds of thousands who actually made it real.

Wow.

wage zombie

Yeah this is a great article.  I found myself agreeing with much of it and I had many of the same feeling about Occupy Vancouver.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..yes i had a lot to choose from as an excerpt. it's a long peiece and i haven't even finished reading it. but worth a thread yes. it's a look back as well as forward.

wage zombie

Strangely though--I read this article a few weeks ago, and there were more comments (some negative).  They don't appear to be there anymore.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..my position for a long time has been that leadership changes from one situation to the next. and it is natural human behaviour.

..i entered the occupy in vancouver as a supporter. it was young people who had made this possible i want to see what they can do. most of my adult life i have a passion for grassroots democracy and it's many forms. so i go to observe how decisions are made. one focus is the assembly.

..leadership went to great lengths to ensure that when talking to each other that the power dynamic was balanced. many had various experiences but this was done on the fly right then and there. in decision making the assembly ran into problems related to efficency. as some first nations were a part of the occupy they began to teach us how to make decisons in a better way and it would included everyone that wanted to participate. that is when the city forced the occupy off art gallery property. so the organizing leadership went on goes on as it did in spain and greece but decision making is where the heart of this lies because decisions made elsewhere are not made in our interests. so were learning. examples galore among the resistance here on turtle island. 

eta:

..in spite of the struggles in leadership, that wage zombie can describe better than me, the occupy accomplished much. the link is now dead but this is what i posted way back then.

Top 10 Achievements of Occupy Vancouver

quote:

2. We built a city-within-a-city, establishing and sustaining a complex street-level occupation in an urban core that involved thousands of people over 37 days.

This city, while no more free of problems and suffering than the larger city surrounding it, nevertheless placed the free exchange of food and medical services, as well as the free exchange of ideas, at its centre. On this basis I call the city we built a utopian city. It is an idea whose time has come.

3. We provided 37,000 free meals (Food Not Bombs!), housing and community for some 30 homeless people, and operated the only 24 hour free medical clinic in the city.

 

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..excellent oportunity to share this more recent and excellent documentary on another occupation. about 20 min long.

Gazi to Gezi - a stones throw away

Gazi to Gezi - a stone's throw away" explores the poetry of a nationwide revolt in Istanbul, Europe's largest city. An explosive mix of the city’s inhabitants come together to fight the police and barricade themselves into one of the metropolis' few remaining green spaces, Gezi Park. All are present; from the liberal students, to oppressed, illegal revolutionary groups living among the slums of the city. The film, told through the memory of a stone, attempts to link the past with the present in a cinematic format which is neither factual nor fictitious. Scored to a beautiful soundtrack, the audience is taken into a rebellious world.