08 October 2011

Draft thoughts/ideas, feelings/opinions re: Occupy Wall Street (Wall Street is Everywhere)

This is mostly intended for the audience of Olympia protest, but can certainly be applied elsewhere as appropriate.

((I kind of got a little wordy perhaps. But here's some of what I think. The most important stuff is probably in the first couple paragraphs or so. Also I write "we" alot, syntax can be changed. anyway. i'm hopeful about this effort to enforce accountability against our predatory economic system. yay.)) I am also including a few more tid-bits at the end (I had previously posted this on Facebook.)

1. We should try not using megaphones, instead we should use the method that the people in New York were forced to us. The speaker would speak only a few words, then people would repeat so that the larger group could hear. I think we should at least give that a try. If people with weak voices need assistance, help, or accommodation, or if people are too shy or scared to speak, then others should carry their messages to the group. Start now?

2. We are not going to win with anger. Plain and simple.

The way to win this, toward ending the abuse, and saving humanity and the planet from the destruction imposed by Wall Street style predatory capitalism, is with happiness.

We need to be happy. We need to get along with each other. We need to be nice to each other.

If we are going to win, and disarm our opponent (our real opponent might really be ignorance, and fear— including our own ignorance and fear,) then we need to be a healthy community of people. We need to be nice to each other. To listen. To be kind. To have fun. To be happy. To be respectful. To clean up after ourselves and each other. To say please, and thank you, and when we are wrong, I am sorry.

Our opponent is mean (whatever our opponent really is: fear, ignorance, Wall Street, government, corruption, greed, whatever it may be,) it is mean.

We don't want to be like our enemy. So we can be nice.

Again, we will not win with anger or meanness, or hostility.

If we are nice and we are happy and we are having fun, then people will want to join us, they will want to participate.

We need to make this a safe space for everyone to participate. That includes families with young children. That includes people who have suffered domestic violence. It includes a lot of people whose feelings and concerns we may have not considered. We must do our best to consider everyones thoughts and opinions and feelings and concerns.

And we need to make this an environment that is safe for everyone.

That is except for Wall Street racketeers and their cronies in government———unless they consider jail to be safe. Because that is where they belong. And that is where we aim to put them.

We may put them in jail, to prevent them from doing more harm. We may put them in jail—to protect ourselves against their corruption and violence. We may put them there to protect themselves from their own actions, which degrade their beings as well.

We will not physically or psychologically abuse them. We will treat them with the dignity and respect that they deserve as human beings. The dignity and respect that we the 99% have been denied. We will not stoop to the level of treating our fellow brother and sister human beings without respect.

This is about the environment. This is about future generations. This is about accountability for hundreds of years of abuse. This is about reparation and reconciliation. This is about the decimation of the tribes of American Indians, and the destruction of traditional cultures all over the planet.

We have had enough war, enough death and destruction. It is time for a new system that respects and serves life.

We are in a spiritual "war", we are waging peace, our tools of the trade include: truth, force of experience, hearts full of compassion and caring. Our ability to listen to each other, and understand each other. Our will to demand respect based on our essential dignity as human beings, demanding respect for all life, the planet. Dearly beloved, here we gather before the coming storm.

And we have already won. Because we are not afraid. And we cannot stop, until such a point that our society is no longer harming the planet, and no longer harmful to each other.

p.s. other additional ideas, only read if you are interested about a recent conversation I had about law and morality and economics:

My friend was telling me about the case of Juan Melendez, who spent 20 years on death row for a murder he didn't commit. When he was exonerated, it was discovered that the prosecutor had possession of information that proved Melendez was not the killer.

What happened to the prosecutor? Was he debarred? Was he prosecuted for attempted murder? NO. The only thing that happened was that he was not allowed to prosecute capital cases.

What kind of justice is that?

The scary thing is that these kinds of injustices happen every day. Prosecutors abuse their power and authority just to benefit their own career.

These are lawyers, the people who are supposed to protect us from criminals. And they are behaving criminally. Law is supposed to be based on morality. And there are lawyers behaving immorally. And there is no accountability.

We don't even need to get into a discussion of Wall Street speculators. Because they are not even really expected to abide by a code of ethics. ONly to serve profit. More and more. And more.

So we have lawyers and legislators, law-makers, who have no allegiance to the morality of common law.

We have systemic corruption.

It's rampant.

p.p.s. We need to get as many police officers and military to join us, and to work with us. These are people who have taken an oath to defend the constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic.

The predatory behavior of Wall Street is hurting humanity and the planet. And we are here, in the belly of the beast. We are in the other Washington, and far away from Wall Street. We are far away, but the culture is continental, and intercontinental. We are not on Wall Street, and we are on Wall Street. Because Wall Street is everywhere around us. In our clothes, in the herbicide on this grass. Helicopters prowl the skies. Dioxins pollute the waters. Green house gasses threaten generations of tomorrow. Poisonous factory by-products of all kinds in the water, land, and air—and in our bodies.

It is in all of the unnamed "Externalities." Wall Street is in them.

Wall Street is in it all. And we must remove it.

We can have peace. We can have prosperity. We can have stability, sustainability.

But in order to do so, we need justice. We need an end to the corruption.

We can even have competition, as long as it is friendly and good-spirited, and driven to improve the lives of everyone, rather than enrich the "winner" at others' expense.

I believe this planet is a forgiving creature.

So, if we make the necessary changes. If we curtail overall economic activity, if we pursue a fair, just, and egalitarian society that ensures a decent, dignified and meaningful life to all people, then we can rest assured that we have done our best, and done all we can to ensure that future generations are not plagued with the systemic violence that causes so much suffering today. A future where people are truly free, where people aren't abused into poverty, and drug-abuse, and addiction.

It's possible. I know it. And we can make it happen. With each other.

p.s. We are not going to be successful with anger. Anger will make it so we cannot communicate with each other, and so we cannot bring in the numbers and types of people that we will need to succeed.

An effective movement will need to be happy, respectful and welcoming to all people (except perhaps Wall Street bankers.)

Also, I think we need to beware of goals like "ending capitalism." For example,... I think it is enough to focus on ending "predatory capitalism"...

And maybe no megaphones (except maybe for performers.) In New York, they had to use human amplification, with call and repeat, and I think that's a good model for a couple main reasons. One, it helps to keep focused and concise, and gives a chance to think between when you're saying something. It also allows the crowd to interact, and people aren't going to repeat something that is ridiculous. So it's more democratic.

p.s. about the labeling and name-calling: When I hear name-calling, it is hard for me to listen, and when I can't listen, I can't understand what people are saying/thinking/feeling.

The same is true when people are really angry. ...It is possible that there a lot of people like me. People who otherwise might be more involved.

(I'm not saying people can't be angry. I get angry. We can get angry, and it's okay if we are. What I am trying to say is that we need to be careful about how are anger is expressed and directed. Careful and conscious about how our words and attitudes affect others, in order to make the occupation open and accessible.)

Moon Over Capitol
Moon Over Capitol
Something with a little beauty and magic during a time of stress and bleakness.


  1. 1. "If we are going to win, and disarm our opponent (our real opponent might really be ignorance, and fear— including our own ignorance and fear,) then we need to be a healthy community of people"

    Our real opponent is not our own ignorance and fear. This totally disregards people who are suffering, people who are murdered, people who are raped and everyone else who is oppressed by capitalism. To say "our own fear" is our real opponent is extremely privileged. Maybe as a white male you don't have as much to fear from the REAL opponent, which is capitalism, and its elite, but a lot of people do. I find it victim-blaming to say that the violence, racist, sexist, transphobic, classist system of oppression is not the "real enemy," but actually the victims "ignorance and fear." Bull. shit.

    2. "We don't want to be like our enemy. So we can be nice."

    We will never be like our enemy. No matter how angry we are, no matter how many laws we break, as victims of the system we will never be like the system. Ever.

    3. "Unless they consider jail to be safe. Because that is where they belong. And that is where we aim to put them."

    No, we do not want to put them in jail. We do not want jails. The Prison Industrial Complex is one of the pinnacles of capitalism and the oppressive, racist society we live in. Burn the jails.

    4. "We need to get as many police officers and military to join us, and to work with us. These are people who have taken an oath to defend the constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic."

    We want veterans who oppose the wars to work with us. Absolutely. The military preys on those already oppressed by the system. We do not want military people who support the wars, who murder and rape Iraqis and Afghans, who support the violence of the system. We do not want police officers. The cops did NOT take an oath to support us the people. They took an oath to defend capitalism, racism, and every injustice of the system so help them god. The cops uphold the murderous system, and that is their job. Burn the cops.

    5. "Also, I think we need to beware of goals like "ending capitalism." For example,... I think it is enough to focus on ending "predatory capitalism"..."

    All capitalism is predatory. If you believe our goal should not be ending capitalism, then this movement is pointless. We are not trying to make tiny edits to a system of violence, we are trying to destroy it. We must destroy capitalism. Would you also say "We should be aware of goals like ending racism. I think it is enough to focus on ending predatory racism?" No, because all racism is predatory. All capitalism is violent. Burn the capitalists.

    6. No movement has EVER been successful without a diversity of tactics. Some people need to be out there breaking laws and being angry and throwing rocks. Some people need to be out there passing out literature. Some people need to be out there tending to medical emergencies. If you do not agree with someone's tactic, work with someone else. It is okay to not agree with each other, and to not work together. There is a reason we work with our friends, we work with people who have the same ideologies as ourselves. We just need the same basic goal, destroying the system. Within that goal, many tactics are necessary. Some peaceful. Some violent. Some loving. Some angry. Just as it has been since the beginning of revolution history and civil rights movements. No one would have given a shit about MLK if the Black Panthers hadn't been around, too.

  2. You have some good points there, thanks!

    Be well!