7 Replies to “Occufail”

  1. Well… yes. But why the gloating?
    A grassroots protest has no chance unless much bigger to sustain momentum. This was neither desperate enough, nor big enough. Still, kudos for the folks that showed up. That’s more than most did… Naive, timid etc. as they may be, I still appreciate the instinct to show up in public. Maybe it’ll happen again.

  2. Marla, I certainly didn’t mean to convey gloating. I’m depressed by this failure, and also by the likely inability of a proudly leaderless, goal-less movement to see its own blown chance and learn from it.

    Personally, I am starting to wonder if the whole leaderless thing isn’t just a way of avoiding the hard, unglamorous work of movement organizing.

    Anyhow, maybe Romney will win and thereby deprive us of our sleeping pills for 4 years…

  3. Yes, I don’t see a substitute for real organizing, and the odds of this happening are so remote, I consider starting to drink (heavily) again. And yes, it is very disappointing because the party conventions are one of the instances where protests could have maximum efficiency, by forcing away the fairy tale/PR bullshit… Indeed, I’d rather take sleeping pills than wallow in the wishful thinking pouring from those delusional speeches…

    I like how well the word “slacktivism” describes a lot of what’s wrong with present day ideas for participation, and although I’m still happy people actually showed up for a considerable period of time, the OWS in many way also exemplified what’s the problem with accepting the grade-school level propaganda about “democracy” for granted. It’s not enough to participate, you have to force them to listen.

    The Montgomery bus boycott had to go for a whole damned year before anyone really started to pay attention, and military-grade level of coordination and organization… And yet, here I am, living in an apartment building for more than a year, and still not knowing the names of the people who live across the hallway…

  4. PS In my home country, back in the 19th century, one person (sic.) was able to single-handedly organize a dense national network of revolutionary committees in preparation for uprising against the Ottomans. I wonder if the lack of Facebook and most mass media had anything to do with it: you go into town, you meet a few people in the community as a group, make a well reasoned case in person, solicit commitment, establish roles, and move onto the next town. Then, the conversation actually stays with the people, with few, if any, brainwashing currents to weaken it and wash it away…

  5. Great points, Marla.

    As for democracy, social movements have always been the main engine of advancement. Hell, even democracy itself had to be won via a social movement with guns. But we in “America” have been utterly mis-taught about the reality, despite the American Revolution, abolitionism, the suffragettes, and the CRM…

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