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Saturday, October 29, 2011

A closer look at Occupy Wall Street

The Occupy Wall Street movement has taken people on both the left and right by surprise. There is a tendency for some leftist to see this as the revolutionary movement they always dreamed of. The right hopes it is just a bunch of board youth who will give this all up and go away.
Fox TV has ridiculed the Occupy Wall Street movement nearly daily, saying that these kids don’t understand the real world, they don’t know what they really want, and they and some adults are nostalgically trying to relive the hippie days.
Actually the Occupy Wall Street group probably has a much better idea of what they want and expect than the outside world realizes. There was one man Fox News asked what kind of government he wanted. He hesitated and some of his friends kept saying “don’t say it.”

According to an
Occupy Wall Street
web site,;

“Occupy Wall Street is leaderless resistance movement with people of many colors, genders and political persuasions. The one thing we all have in common is that We Are The 99% that will no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of the 1%. We are using the revolutionary Arab Spring tactic to achieve our ends and encourage the use of nonviolence to maximize the safety of all participants.
This #ows movement empowers real people to create real change from the bottom up. We want to see a general assembly in every backyard, on every street corner because we don't need Wall Street and we don't need politicians to build a better society.”
This statement probably explains a lot. It contains the idea of a general assembly, almost a replacement of the style of government we presently have. With no leadership it seems to resemble syndicalism style anarchy. By clicking on the general assembly, the reader can quickly see a large amount of planning that went into this movement.
The Kasama Project has also noticed some of this group’s goals;
“An emerging truth is now being spoken out loud: 
Occupy Wall Street
not some progressive “constituency” that unions and others need to “relate to.”
Things have gone far beyond that. This is now a historical moment, a true tear in previous politics, alignments, possibilities and silence. It is a rupture and an opening where everyone needs to act, based on their understandings and political concerns.”
 The Kasama site notices that this is not just another reformist movement. These young people have drawn unions, left-wing political parties and many disenfranchised people. But far from just wanted the Democrats to listen to them, they want serious change. As their statement points out they are following the methods of the Arab Spring. They have seen these tactics work in Tunisia and Egypt and they seem to want that here.
Some other parties, such as the Revolutionary Communist Party have taken a keen interest in this movement.
This is a movement of some young people who are new to this type of politics. It is important that left-wing people as myself and other groups should make sure that the leadership of this group is allowed to develop on its own. We can stand by ready to help, give advice and jump in as needed. But this is the largest movement of the left in the US since Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). So let them lead and we will see where they take us. We can always change course, later if needed. This is a great opportunity for all of us if the capitalist system finally goes down. And that event is WAAAAY overdue.
-សតិវ អតុ

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