It started off as a small band of committed campers determined to occupy Wall Street. The protest began by opposing the blatant looting of Main Street and to show solidarity for economically oppressed people around the globe. In just two short weeks, the occupation has exploded in size and is now spreading to other parts of the country.
Notably, the only time the establishment media covered the swelling “occupation” was to discuss its lack of a cohesive message, as if to immediately discredit it, plant the seed of divide-and-conquer and move on. After ignoring the protest completely for the first few days, they were forced to cover the infamous pepper spray attack of harmless and contained women in what amounted to a mini-Kent State incident.
Sympathy for peaceful protesters immediately surged from this shameless act of police brutality. Well-known liberal activists like Michael Moore, Russell Simmons, Susan Sarandon and others waded into the Manhattan encampment. Almost instantly, Bill O’Reilly labeled the demonstrators as anti-capitalist. So it seems everyone in the establishment is falling into their left-right roles quite neatly when defining the revolution.
Additionally, major workers unions started voting to throw their support behind the “movement.” This further acts to define the message and it will surely isolate anti-union Tea Party activists who otherwise share the same rage against the machine as the occupiers. Today, George Soros showed sympathy for the protesters which is bound to ignite the Soros haters to condemn the entire demonstration.
The establishment knows exactly what it’s doing by isolating angry people back on to their respective plantations. They will stop solidarity at all costs.
Because of the lack of clear demands and the encroachment of ideological figure heads, some have warned that the movement can be easily co-opted. Examples to prove their concerns range from how the grassroots Tea Party was swallowed up by establishment Republicans, to how the Egypt revolution (which isn’t nearly over by the way) simply replaced a globalist-backed dictator with a globalist-backed opposition leader.
However, I contest that it will be next to impossible to co-opt this explosive movement in America precisely because there is no central command, or demands. Some are there to protest the bankster takeover of the people’s government at the taxpayer’s expense. Closely tied to that is a general discontent of crony capitalism as well as the resolute group of “End the Fed’ers.” Some are there to promote peace and an end to the foreign wars. Some are there to defend their civil liberties against the aggressive surveillance and police state. And some are there simply because they lost their job or benefits and find themselves with no other way to fight the system. Indeed, there are countless more issues that are justifiably present.
Many have been quick to call the protests “controlled opposition,” or shout about the ideas they disagree with. Clearly, there will be many sources of power who attempt to hijack and redirect the growing rage. While it is important to point that out when obvious, and to educate the misdirected, we should be careful not to alienate those who are genuinely upset and are now primed to be fully awoken.
Despite differing passions, protesters have shown unshakable solidarity in an overwhelming disgust of the system itself — otherwise known as “the establishment.” Another aspect that appears to unite all involved is the commitment to demonstrate peacefully. Most importantly, it is a decentralized movement, like any true grassroots revolution. Try as the establishment and other fringe groups will, these characteristics are the foundation of why this movement cannot easily be co-opted or defeated.
Building off of that, here are six more specific reasons why the “Occupy” revolution is here to stay until profound fundamental, systemic change takes place.
Numbers Don’t Lie: CNN reported last week that a record 90% of the population believe the economy “stinks.” What’s worse, the government and banks have approval ratings in single digits. Who will those 90% empathize with more: those who protest; or the elitist bankers, their cronies, and their stormtrooper guards? The tinderbox has been lit and there is no stopping it now. Millions of people have been waiting for a rallying call to direct their displeasure.
Left-Right Paradigm Shattered: Although all of the protesters likely have personal political leanings, most realize that voting for a specific brand has gotten them nowhere. The merger of corporate and state power is now exposed for all to see. As far as solutions are concerned, everyone now realizes that band aids will no longer treat specific wounds. The bleeding is caused by an aneurysm in the system, not by a political party.
Peaceful Protest: “When it gets down to having to use violence, then you are playing the system’s game. The establishment will irritate you – pull your beard, flick your face, to make you fight. Because once they’ve got you violent, then they know how to handle you. The only thing they don’t know how to handle is non-violence and humor.” — John Lennon. The city’s first mistake was letting protesters set up a peaceful camp; now they’re stuck with us. At this point, bringing in stormtroopers to remove the peaceniks will make Kent State look tame. Beware, however, of planted provocateurs used to demonize the disgruntled as dangerous and violent.
Token Solutions will not disburse occupants: The establishment will surely try to pacify the masses with token actions like firing Bernanke or Geithner, raising taxes on the top 1%, or arresting some banksters. But it will not work because there are so many differing grievances. A charade of “solutions” will not satisfy the most aware protesters. This is the strength of a decentralized movement.
Cops and Military are being screwed too: Again, the numbers don’t lie. It’s been noted that over 20% of NYPD mortgages are under water, and if nine-out-of-ten Americans feel screwed by the establishment, it’s easy to assume this majority also represents soldiers and police. It has been reported that several cops have refused to come to work, while some active duty and former military are plotting to protect the demonstrators from the police.
Make no mistake, this revolution will become a battle of ideas. True, solutions come in all colors and forms that don’t fit everyone’s concerns. But this moment requires ALL of us to encourage others to participate. To accomplish anything substantial we must first commit to throwing ourselves upon the gears and levers of the apparatus, and to indicate to the owners of the machine, that unless we’re free we’ll prevent the machine from working at all, as said famously by Mario Savio (see video below). It’s a blessing that each individual is focused on different gears and levers that must be exposed and stopped, otherwise a peaceful and lasting revolution does run the risk of being derailed.