By rexymeteorite / Daily Kos / November 29th
There has been a lot of hand-wringing about the direction of the Occupy movement, its message, its leaderless nature, its outside-of-the-beltway tactics and the everyone-is-invited attitude of the Occupiers. There has been much consternation about Occupy foregoing the two party system debate and instead focusing on direct action, and other ways to influence our rusted out old political system without having to argue about democrats or republicans. While concerns about the movement should be addressed, and problems solved in a timely manner, these specific criticisms have gotten as stale as week old bread.
Occupy exists outside of our current two party system. It is not a vehicle to elect national Democrats or Republicans. This fact, despite the concerns about electing Democrats to office, is a good thing. We need a movement that exists outside of the party’s top-down hierarchical structure, that isn’t accountable to any one Democrat, that isn’t responsible for going out and soliciting donations. We need this movement to hold all members of our political system accountable, so it cannot be beholden to one party or another. Occupy “declaring” for one party or another goes against the entire concept of the movement.
Their message isn’t cohesive, because all walks of life are invited to join, but one message has been abundantly clear throughout the duration, if you have listened: the rich guy gets richer because he can buy power and representation in our Government, the little guy gets screwed because all of the gains he has made has been eaten up by said rich guy. And we are not having it any more. That is about as clear as it gets and that is as clear as “the message” needs to be. The goals of the movement sprout from the message: to have a fairer society. Not to have a society where the rich can’t have their riches, but to have a society where everyone has the opportunity to live their lives without having to work two jobs (one for health insurance, one for pay), without going bankrupt because of cancer, without losing their homes to shady mortgaging practices, without working 19 hour days, without going hungry, without going homeless. Those goals aren’t ill-defined, that is what the movement has been saying all along! Were you listening?
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Photo by Atomische • Tom Giebel via flickr.com