Thursday, 10 November 2011
The Key To Success - Set a Goal and Stick To It!
As the cold weather sets in, municipal governments lose patience, and mainstream media's fascination turns into scorn, the Occupy Movement risks sliding into total obscurity and irrelevance. Rather than further alienating people with what's become an incoherent grab bag of vague causes and issues (native rights, police brutality, 'inequality', the death of the middle class, climate change) that no one person can act immediately to change anyway, I suggest they regroup. Pick something strong, one thing, that is meaningful, important and resonates with people, and drive the point home relentlessly. Tell everyone else to leave their cardboard, tents, freakshows and urine at home, or start their own protest and take it there. I'm really annoyed with the amateur behaviour and ignorant declarations coming out of certain occupy canada locations. Starting with the fact that church lawns and art galleries are not Wall Street, and your vagrancy of these valuable community properties is proving nothing.
Indian activist Anna Hazare has accomplished something - by going on hunger strike and demanding that the parliament of India create an ombudsman to police runaway political corruption. He has succeeded. Ontario Dairy farmer Michael Schmidt almost died on his hunger strike asking premier Dalton McGuinty to meet with him over the right to drink raw milk, and although the premier didn't budge, Schmidt got his meeting and the chance to eat again. Which means he got closer to an elite figure than any of these rag tag losers ever will, because he had a specific question.
How could you let your movement run away from you and be co-opted by people demanding an official inquiry into 9/11? This is supposed to be about fixing capitalism, which, in case you haven't noticed, is not happening with your "occupation". The fact is that you made a drum circle and failed to make any specific mention of, say, Joe Cassano. In case you didn't know, that's the guy who invented the credit default swap at AIG and who is possibly the biggest financial terrorist of all time. He continues to sit in London on the 400 million dollars he made at that bailed out institution. He has faced no criminal charges which tells me that real wrong that has been done. Injustices like these abound, and there are untold untapped reserves of anger and frustration out there that your movement could have tapped into by calling them out, but you've failed to do so.
Let me give you something to help you the next time around (which will be soon): this resolution I've come up with. It won't solve all the problems you're upset about (and nothing will), but I suspect it will be a good start in taking some of the power back and addressing the issues the more clear-headed among you might be trying to affect change on.
"Let it be resolved that we are living in a free-market, capitalist society and as such all firms are fully responsible for the risks and decisions they take. Let it be resolved that we require the constitution of our country to be amended to criminalize and outlaw corporate bailouts in all their forms. Let it be resolved that no corporation, business, or publicly traded entity is "too big to fail" and regular bankruptcy and winding up laws will apply to all failed companies no matter their size or the economic consequences for society. Not another cent of taxpayer capital is to go toward the subsidizing of corporations, as it only delays these institutions' inevitable failures, and the taxpayer sees no dividend or benefit when these corporations are profitable."
Stick to that and see how far you get. And because of the focus and coherence, I'm sure that moderates and hordes of new unemployed will be right there with you. Finally, take the fight straight to the banks this time and demand to meet the CEOs - the small businesses, residents, and thinkers who are increasingly getting caught in the crossfire of this "occupy" stunt don't deserve it, because this isn't about them. Occupy Wall Street was invented by the Vancouver-based Adbusters magazine. How ironic that it is in that same city where the movement has deviated the farthest from its initial innocence and serious intentions - Occupy Vancouver building its reputation on such commendable actions as a tragic drug overdose and the dumping of a bucket of urine on a city worker's head. Next time, lets skip all this sideshow crap and cut straight to the heart of the matter - the bottomless trough of taxpayer capital corporations believe they have unconditional access to - and stay there until we get what we want. This started out with good intentions but has turned into a stupid punk rock looking, big dog wielding, anarchist wannabe dirty hippie street party joke.