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View Diary: The Squandered Potential of Occupy (240 comments)

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  •  You've got a lot of nerve with your small-minded (16+ / 0-)

    criticism of OWS and the left. How dare they attempt to change any fucking thing! You remind me of the those who dumped on the hippie movement while the hippies were busy trying to change the world. Occupy has done more to change the conversation and the status quo than you ever will. It's easy to stand on the sidelines and throw rocks. But it's really not very useful.

    •  I didn't go full in but I didn't just watch... (6+ / 0-)

      ... from the sidelines.  OWS changed the political discourse in America, quickly and permanently and that is unparalleled success in a dimension above the political system itself.

      OTOH, the governance structure they chose seems inadequate to change American politics from the inside, rather it seems effective to remain latent until it can flourish in some sort post-apocalyptic scenario.  

      I think that in 20 years there may be a confrontation between Tea Party armed wingnuts types and a re-energized OWS.  And I know where we will stand.

      I believe that the backlash against the hippies is still at play. In a way the forces that opposed the hippies are the same than the ones that opposed OWS.

      Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

      by Shockwave on Sun Dec 02, 2012 at 06:18:30 AM PST

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    •  At least could you get your facts straight? (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Smoh, Catte Nappe, Papuska, Jeff Simpson

      I'm guessing that you are too young to actually know who the "hippies" were.

      The "hippies" were decidedly non-political. They were for "sex, drugs and rock-and-roll" and "tune in, turn on and drop out." Among the youth movements of the era that was political were the "yippies," purposely founded as a pun on hippies and as a political version of the hippies, the anti-war movement, the SDS, and various civil rights youth movements like Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, CORE and SCLC. The hippies were irrelevant to politics and I'm always amazed that young people complain about hippie bashing as some sort of political disapproval.

    •  Critique is very useful. Occupy numbers diminishe (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Smoh, doroma, kalmoth

      diminished because people insisted on doing things (or doing nothing) without thinking about the effectiveness or ineffectiveness.    

    •  Nearly every criticism I read here of Occupy (12+ / 0-)

      is from someone who watched from the outside.  I also participated on a limited basis in my local occupation while it still was active.  General Assemblies could be frustrating because of the nature of their structure which gave worth to all who chose to participate, but that is not a valid reason to criticize the movement.  

      Each local occupation had varying local agendas, but all of them placed a heavy emphasis upon the worth of the people, all people.  People should not be casualties of corporate greed, which is what we are seeing in our society right now.

      Those who are critical of the Occupy Movement fail to comprehend that first and foremost, it is not a political movement.  It is not a liberal movement either, although many of the people behind it were liberals.  I met people in my own Occupy movement who were libertarian and others who were politically unaffiliated and blamed all conventional politicians.

      I cannot emphasize this enough.  Occupy is a social movement that exists outside organized politics.  Here is what I wrote on another diary to which David Graeber (one of the original forces behind the Occupy Movement and its NYC iteration OWS) responded.

      Occupy is a social movement, and (9+ / 0-)

      as was the case with many social movements in the past, Occupy is having political effects without being a part of any political party or the formal political process.  The people behind Occupy have understood from the beginning that the political process itself is broken and changes will come as a result from forces outside that process.

      The main reason Democrats benefited from Occupy is because the Democrats were more willing to understand just how powerful a change in the national conversation that Occupy had brought to fore and used that in appealing to the electorate.  I would like to see some follow up by our elected officials, but count me among those who are skeptical as to whether or not they will follow through in the legislative process.

      by gulfgal98 on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 06:13:26 AM EST

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      the OWS strategy (9+ / 0-)

          was to play on the already-existing sense that politicians of both parties were crooks more answerable to the 1% who fund them than to those they ostensibly represent. It was a popular delegitimation exercise. This would both cause some within the system to desperately try to relegitimate the system by making policy initiatives they never would have otherwise, and also open up spaces outside the system to create a new directly democratic culture which would have even more profound long-term effects.

       that's what I think most of the original strategists were, and are still, trying to do in the long term. Of course in a diverse democratic movement there are people with very different ideas of what the movement should be about. But I think this is the center of it.

      by david graeber on Wed Nov 28, 2012 at 11:07:57 AM EST

      It is disconcerting to see a diary such as this make the top of the recommended list.  While the diarist has the right to take exception with some of the methods of the Occupy Movement, he has no right to declare that it is a failure when he has not contributed to trying to make it succeed.  IMHO, Occupy has already succeeded in that it single handedly changed the national conversation from debt reduction to income inequality and we saw that in the last election.

      "Growing up is for those who don't have the guts not to. Grow wise, grow loving, grow compassionate, but why grow up?" - Fiddlegirl

      by gulfgal98 on Sun Dec 02, 2012 at 06:56:13 AM PST

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    •  I'm criticizing it from a hippie standpoint (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cal2010, HamdenRice, Jeff Simpson, kalmoth

      I was 18 in'68 and a hippie, I'm not speaking in abstracts. We had something of great value and we, ourselves, lost that power.

      I know that I don't have to tell you what ultimately happened or argue over whether we did good or not. My complaint with Occupy is that they refused to learn anything from history. It was a blank slate for them.

      I know I'm generalizing because I wasn't all over at every Occupy, but as I said above the incident with John Lewis was the best example I can give that they had no idea that many people had walked the path they were on and they could if they wanted, learn from them.

      "The scientific nature of the ordinary man is to go on out and do the best you can." John Prine

      by high uintas on Sun Dec 02, 2012 at 09:01:34 AM PST

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