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We are the 99 percent

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#TheoryThursday: Intro to Social Change Theory (aka #YouAreNeeded for a wave)

Posted 10 years ago on March 19, 2014, 3:10 p.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Tags: #YouAreNeeded, #WWW, #WaveOfAction, TheoryThursday

This week's Theory Thursday is by Micah White, PhD. - OSN

Although our individual human life is finite, each of us is born into a human story that stretches back to the dawn of inegalitarian society—a story of the struggle for equality, autonomy and mutual aid among the people… We call this the story of democracy.

The people’s spiritual uprising toward democracy is like the Pacific Ocean seen from Neahkahnie Mountain. The surface of the ocean is in a state of flux—constant dynamic change—and the individual human mind is incapable of anticipating the movement of the sea. Even when the waves are calm, they are truly in a state of motion and unpredictability near the shore or around sea stacks.

Humanity has learned to never turn their back on the ocean. One never knows when a tsunami might hit. The ocean receives our respect because at anytime the waves may turn from placid to furious and wash away the structures that once looked permanent.

The fury of the ocean is influenced by natural forces: the distance of the earth to the moon, the wind, earthquakes, and more.

The waves of the social organism are equally influenced by natural forces. Revolutions follow patterns. An increase in food prices, for example, historically precedes a revolutionary moment. Witness the 2011 Tahrir Uprising in Egypt. Each era has a unified theory of social movement creation that remains to be defined by those striving toward its discovery. The great revolutionaries behind the uprisings of the 18th century (French Revolution, American Revolution, Haitian Revolution), 19th century (Europe’s Insurrection of 1848 and the Paris Commune of 1871) and 20th century (Russian Revolution, Chinese Revolution) were modern theorists of understanding, stimulating, and channeling the insurgent waves of the social organism toward liberatory political goals.

The social organism is under pressure from the trifecta of ecological, economic and spiritual catastrophe. The ongoing crisis of the 21st century is a symptom of these three catastrophic pressures that guarantee a continued increase in uprisings.

Our objective as social movement creators is to develop a predictive understanding of the complex forces of dynamic social change in order to use the momentum of coming global waves to achieve our populist vision of a better world for the 99%.

Micah M. White, PhD is on the board of the Occupy Solidarity Network.