Thoughts that Occupy My Mind.

It would appear that the Occupy movement is growing, and, aside from infiltration by some violent anarchists in Rome, has continued with a pretty high degree of discipline.   The most “violence” has been confrontations between the police and protesters that tend to leave folks wondering why a march, even one done in civil disobedience warrants the introduction of batons and pepper spray by the police.  In other words, the images tend to be sympathetic to the protesters.

This is notable, because in the “if it bleeds it leads” culture of the main stream media (not to mention its corporate ownership), it takes a lot for protests to get coverage.  Still, Occupy seems to have taken hold and it’s drawing attention.  SNL is addressing it.  Republicans have backed off of claims of concern about “mobs” and have tried to pivot to try to blame Obama for  the complaints of the protesters. 

So here’s what’s banging around in my brain this Sunday night. 

The Occupiers are protesting the failings of laissez-faire capitalism, and people are listening.  Of course, one question arises.  If not capitalism as we know it, then what?  Interestingly, that great unknown is not enough to turn folks aside from their exploration of that question. 

Then it occured to me.  The last mass uprising in this country took place in the 60’s.  In that Cold War context, all someone arguing against the protesters of that era had to do was raise the specter of communisim and align the protesters with our nation’s “enemies” even if they were not  specifically advocating communism or socialism.  In a bipolar world, the questioning of one pole invited accusations of alignment with another pole.  It would be enough to back down anyone who wasn’t actually a socialist.

We don’t live in a bipolar world.  There is no defined national enemy that is synonmynous with “not capitalism”.  I think that’s kind of a big deal, and one that could make the difference as the movement progresses.

We’ll see.


About Andrew

I'm a Christian, American, liberal, geeky, thoughtful, Northwest-transplanted Angeleno husband, father, and pundit who writes about anything he can think of.
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3 Responses to Thoughts that Occupy My Mind.

  1. Liz V. says:

    That explains something I had noticed. When the protests started, the first response (after the news blackout) was that they were being led by communists. That was quickly abandoned and detractors have been searching for any sort of slander that might take hold. Now it is that the people marching are really trust fund brats who don’t know what they are doing. That theory holds no water. And then the response at Citibank to the protestors who came in to close their accounts and were locked into the bank and arrested. That’s an ugly message but not one that will help the banks’ cause.

    • Andrew says:

      November 5 is going to be interesting. After I tweeted and referenced Guy Fawkes Day, I started poking around and found references to it being called “Bank Transfer Day” or something like that. It leads me to believe that there could be a lot more Citbank incidents that day. If I were a smart bank exec, I’d consider trying to close branches on that day if the regulators would allow it.
      I heard a commercial on my progressive radio station that drew a contrast between the 99% who wanted their orders shipped same day and the 1% who didn’t. If advertisers are using the language, you know it’s taking hold. Admittedly, it was on a liberal talk station, but still…

  2. Pingback: More Thoughts from an Occupied Mind « "Great" Thoughts

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