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Intro: "On Sept. 17, the Arab Spring becomes the new American Fall, with 20,000 revolutionaries in a tent city. Plus 'solidarity' occupations in major financial centers worldwide, all ready for a long siege, vowing not to leave till they get their 'one simple demand.'"

Does the American Left have the guts to pull this off? (photo: Charles Peterson)
Does the American Left have the guts to pull this off? (photo: Charles Peterson)

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+8 # Capn Canard 2011-09-07 19:56
Hmmm, I am not sure that the writer is entirely correct. Much of what he says is Standard Operating Procedure, like an approved speech, or the standardized editorial analysis. Reflective and introspective, apparently attuned to our current zeitgeist. Not bad, but I believe we'll just have to wait and see what happens in the next week. I doubt that I am the only one who has notice that in the past two months I have noticed far more frustration in the comments on these pages and I feel it deeply as well. What will happen on the 17th? If I had to guess, the Powerful will come out with thugs and it is possible that people will be killed. But maybe I am just to cynical and profoundly disappointed in our Gov't to have any faith whatsoever in either Gov't or the Corporatocracy that tells Gov't what to do! I wish I could be there...
+2 # Capn Canard 2011-09-08 07:13
Okay, let me just say that my post may seem to challenge this blog, so to clarify: in my opinion, Paul B. Farrell, is about 95% on the money and I AGREE with his blog post.
+1 # pbbrodie 2011-09-08 07:28
The last thing the oligarchs will allow is for anyone to be killed. That would be exactly the spark that has been missing and would surely ignite the revolution. So, you can rest assured that they will do everything within their power to avoid bloodshed.
+1 # Capn Canard 2011-09-08 10:50
I am not convinced of your view. I believe it is far more likely that they would blame any violence on the very people the violence is directed at. Perhaps something like this "those protesters instigated the violence etc so the authorities had to protect the INTERESTS of Wall Street with defensive measures". I do hope that it stays non-violent as long as the occupation is sustained but my gut feeling is that the arrogance of Wall Street power will not suffer any disagreement from the unwashed masses. I hope I am wrong.
+1 # Kev C 2011-09-08 16:34
Like i said in my other comment I suspect similar but from the terrorist point of view. Although it won't be a terrorist attack just made to look like one so they get to justify their agenda even more.
You know the sort of thing I mean.
'Oh look at those poor people murdered by those nasty terrorists. We gotta go get em before they do some more damage. But you know they will be hard to find and it may take us some time but don't you worry none as we will stay true to the cause until we have every last one of them.' etc etc etc. Another field day in the press arena. Don't you just love America. :)
+1 # Kev C 2011-09-08 16:30
There is a strong rumour that there will be an atrocity to mark the tenth anniversary of 9/11. What says it won't wait a few days and happen on Wall Street instead? After all are the government still trying to justify the war on terror? Are they now facing extreme pressure to come clean about 9/11 and the other atrocities that have happened since?
Call me a cynical old git if you like but to be brutally frank I don't trust the government either. Their explanations as to why things are the way they are don't add up. They simply expect the people to go home and accept that they are going to have to endure the pain the government intends to inflict on them and to do so without cause they are the government. When will the masses wake up and realise that they are being screwed alive?
+1 # jwb110 2011-09-08 00:32
Their presence is it's own demand. The fact that this kind of people present protest is possible is what throws the fear of god into the 1%. If it can be done once, it can be done again..and again...and again.
+2 # TGMisanthrope 2011-09-08 01:56
Seems to me that "One Citizen, One Dollar, One Vote" would be an excellent place to start on the path to an America once again "of the people, for the people. Hell, "One Citizen, One Dollar, One Vote, One Step On A Journey Of One Thousand Miles."
-3 # fobsub 2011-09-08 02:40
Unfortunately there is no comparison between suppressed and trod upon Arab nations whose people have little more to lose and are simply desperately trying to regain their dignity and to be able to live like human beings, while Americans, well... I don't want to get too descriptive but lets just say its more like a game, something to do, they're bored and they think what the people of those little countries are doing is cool, a great social gig. There's just a lot of young FaceBookers out there who haven't completely ironed their morals into numbness yet. They like to make a lot of noise and participate in any social gathering that looks.....promi sing.
All it takes is a good rallying call! And I think it would be safer for all if they stick with the Democracy thing and play down the corruption thing because its just plain stupid for an unarmed crowd of kids to mess with Americas muscle. So how about using something like "I want my D back"!,, or maybe "Gimme Gimme Gimme That D"!! These would be safe and really cool.

Anyway at the first sound of a car backfiring or maybe even a real gunshot, everyone will grab their I-phones and run home.
No, America isn't ready. Its going to take a lot more suffering than slight economic stress before the pansies in this country do more than give it lip service.
+1 # dollbock 2011-09-08 09:23
One dollar one vote and require all media outlets to open OUR airwaves to the candidates for real debates about real issues.
Common Cause has been advocating for public financed elections for years and until K Street is shut down, there is little chance that this country will be able to deal pragmatically with the current crisis' and the crisis' looming ahead.
0 # Capn Canard 2011-09-08 10:57
dollbock, taking back our airwaves is something that is long overdue. Our leaders have given up the public airwaves to the greedy without any DEMAND for something in return.
+1 # Activista 2011-09-08 09:38
all data is pointing to real change - as per chaos theory - change will come soon and it will be NOT Sunday NYT where you will read it.
caution is that typical revolution will stir the mud - new power structure could be MUCH worse than present militarism.
Military rules now in Egypt - election nowhere - notice that NONE of the "Arab Springs" had elections - and I bet that there will be any - we (USrael, NATO militarism controls them ... bombs them ..)
+1 # Josippie 2011-09-08 13:54
How do you occupy Wall St on a Saturday, when business is closed? I sure do hope they are successful, though.
0 # sjtravis 2011-09-08 14:40
The Wall Street Occupation

A peaceful demonstration of anger?
Okay, but not the best use of your time.
Intensity, Joy, Kindness, Love, Meaning, Nurture, Openess, Possibility
take you further, are more contagious.
Show the investors ten-fold abundance, a new earth in tune with nature and spirit.
Resonate the banks and exchanges to luminescence.

The streets and sidewalks are already packed with pedi-cabs and pedestrians.
The stores are full of enticements.
The cafes are full of conversations.
All legal and welcome.
Be present, with potential rather than judgement.
Incubate your own mind, and project your presence to them and each other.
Fill them all with true thoughts, at the pace they can absorb them, eternally.

Occupation means a respected career.
Exchange and grow with all your currencies.
Federal dollars and plastic data are pretty illusory, usury, loserly.
Convert them to sunlight, organic food, knowledge, compassion.
Imagine people following their hearts, paid fully with real currencies.

Imagine investors converting weaponry into tools.
Imagine coal converted to bio-char.
Imagine industry as bio-mimicry.
Imagine true health caring.
There are beautiful investments at our fingertips.
The investors are our fingers.
0 # Mark E. Smith 2011-09-08 14:45
Tahrir Square failed because the people could not maintain and defend their tents. The regime attacked them intermittently, but mostly just waited them out. Of course the Mubarak regime, which is still in power, didn't have a fraction of the U.S. crowd control gear and training that Homeland Security has here. Strange that people would feel most alive at a time when they were swapping a dictator puppet of the U.S. and Israel for his military junta funded by the U.S. and committed to protecting Israel, to be followed by some rigged elections like the kind we have here which never really change anything. (continued)
0 # Mark E. Smith 2011-09-08 14:46
The problem isn't money in politics. The problem isn't Wall Street. The problem is capitalism itself, materialism itself, consumerism itself. Camping out and getting beaten and arrested can't change that.

The only proven way I know of to nonviolently de-legitimize a government is for the people to withhold their consent of the governed--to boycott its elections and refuse to vote. Recently, of the voters I've discussed this with, their reasons for continuing to vote range from claiming, without having tried it, that it wouldn't work (sure, if you don't try it, it won't work), saying that I'm right but that they're incapable of acting rationally, to saying that they think the system is totally corrupt but don't really want to bring it down because they're still deriving some benefits from it. (continued)
0 # Mark E. Smith 2011-09-08 14:48
The first time the Egyptian government cleared Tahrir, they tore down all the tents and signs and erased any evidence that there had ever been a protest. That's not a government that recognizes a revolution. In subsequent clearings of Tahrir the Egyptian government was much quick and more efficient, as they'd had plenty of practice. Not on a par with the U.S. government which equipped them for and trained them in crowd control, even sending them a few more Abrams tanks in case they became necessary, but good enough to deal with the nuisance.

I do hope the protest encampment raises awareness, as that is the most it could accomplish, but that awareness needs to be raised for a purpose, not just to feel good. (continued)
0 # Mark E. Smith 2011-09-08 14:49
The best, quickest, and most effective way to get corporate money out of politics is to boycott elections and refuse to vote until that one simple demand is met. Imagine if the corporations spend billions of dollars on the election as they always do, and almost nobody votes. Do you think they'd be willing to do it again? And even if they were, would their boards of directors allow it?

Governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed. Your vote is your consent. Once you vote, you can protest all you want to no avail, since you've already consented to allow the government to govern you, to make all important decisions for you, and to beat you and arrest you if you complain about it.
0 # BobGriffin 2011-09-08 17:40
Ah yes, boycott the elections. Just as so many progressive types did in 1980. Just as so many liberal/progres sive types did in 2010. I can see it's having an effect. This tactic is successfully electing Republicans.
0 # Kev C 2011-09-09 10:13
Seems like I spoke too soon yesterday because now the Los Angeles Times is reporting that the Homeland Security is reporting a 'Specific, credible' terror threat aimed at 9/11 memorials.

Now what if nothing happens? Who will bet it isn't left on the back burner for a few days until the Wall Street protests? That is presuming that the protest goes ahead or is not banned. Oh an another thing that occurred to me when I read the headline. Maybe the powers that be will use this unspecified 'Specific, credible' terror threat as a suitable excuse to close down all gatherings out of 'concern for peoples safety'. Yeah? Really? Wait and see what gives.

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