It is the anniversary of Occupy and sadly to say, the public has not embraced their message and Occupy has not integrated into the broader public to influence a larger portion of the population. As I visit some Occupy sites some groups continue to struggle against discouragement to keep active; kudos to them for their dogged determination and their action while the backdrop of society stagnate in inaction. The broad populous is quick to give lip service to their discontent, yet cannot even discipline themselves enough to learn what is wrong with our system of government. It sounds a wonderful formula of political unhappiness.
I’d like to extend encouragement to those who have lost heart, Occupy did give us some insights into the direction we must travel to have a successful movement of change. First of all, they gave us clarity of focus on what the problem is. In years past, we activists, struggled against political figures and parties, bought by the Multinational Corporations, but the phrase the 1% gave society a picture and image of the problem, and did it in a tidy little slogan; one that could resonate in our souls.
Those who have read a lot of my writing will be familiar that back in 1993, I along with 110,000 some activists, protested against the Chretien Government’s idea of introducing the NAFTA, hoping that we would stop it from being implemented. Free trade/globalism has been very disastrous to Canada and to the US. We activists were right, the politicians were wrong, but still, our governments are agents for the 1%, so the Government still went ahead and implemented the 1%policy against the will of the majority. We, the 110,000, had our nice little jobs and our nice homes and we went home to both. I think we stumbled because we thought that our numbers would bring about the change. Call it arrogance, call it naivety, but there was no change made. We did not do, as the Occupiers did, to put everything on the line and stay there.
The Occupiers made an impact, they caused governments to sit up and take notice, and I think that they even made our politicians a little afraid ( and the Quebec Student Movement (QSM) did more so. I would go so far as to say that there would not likely have been such a Student/Quebec populous outcry if there hadn’t been an Occupy. Of these 2 examples, the QSM took the extra step of turning activism into political results, they brought the Quebec Liberals, their opponents down. The key is, and I call it Persistent In-Your-Face Activism turned to political action. That is putting your actions and determination where your mouth alone once was.
Our ongoing problem is that our politicians do not know their place. Our politicians talk democracy, but they do not serve- they rule. They assume power when they should represent – And we have ourselves to blame, we let them think that it is their power when it is actually that the power is ours, and we merely allow them to use ours. So, if it takes Persistent In-Your-Face Activism during an election campaign, to remind them, that is what you must do. That means to go toe – to -toe with the politicians, if need be, and not back down to their pretense to power.
We, the people, must first come to think of ourselves as sovereign (that it is our power) or we can do nothing, not being in the correct frame of mind. Then we must then act, as did Occupy, and more clearly as did the students of Quebec, with powerful, sustained pressure.
But, here is where even the QSM didn’t go far enough, we have to go one more step, one step farther than what they went. We have to go past the status quo, we must bypass the whole corrupt and anti democratic political structure of the Party System. The Party System is structured in a way to pull and hold power to itself, and therefore away from the people. The QSM will find that in backing the PQ they are setting up a fight in the future, when the students and the PQ have parted way. The stress will be felt. in the next merry-go-round of Party System elections.
To clarify, the step and idea further that we must go is that before the next election we must get independents selected and ready to run in the next election, in as many ridings as we can, so the people have independents to vote for rather than candidates from the Major Parties. The Major Parties are beholden to the 1% and are obliged to pay back the ones who got them into power. On the other side. Independents are beholden to those that voted for them, the people, you and me.
Who do you want to represent you? Surely not the one beholden to the 1%. In a choice, the 1% representative is a worse choice than to vote for an Independent. I myself would rather vote for a chimp than someone that will continue to walk us down the 1% road.
Now, back to you; a person that doesn’t stand for something will be ruled by the power hungry. What are you personally going to do? Make connections with others, and pass this post along.