Forum Post: A view from the outside
Posted 11 years ago on Oct. 6, 2011, 6:52 p.m. EST by EndGame
from Providence, RI
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
I ended up at this website through references of the organization from numerous new sources. If you are trying to actually accomplish anything, GOOD LUCK! This sight provides no insight for somebody that is trying to understand what the hell you people are about. After reading through the various pages and posts, It just seems to be a bunch of malcontents bitching and moaning, all with their own agendas.
The only background listed on this site is: "Occupy Wall Street is leaderless resistance movement with people of many colors, genders and political persuasions. The one thing we all have in common is that We Are The 99% that will no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of the 1%. We are using the revolutionary Arab Spring tactic to achieve our ends and encourage the use of nonviolence to maximize the safety of all participants."
A few comments from the outside:
GET A LEADER! I know that is probably against your beliefs, but this site which is largely the face of the movement is a disorganized disaster. Nobody I have spoken to know what the heck your movement is about, if you want support, you need organized, public objectives and goals.
Come to terms with the fact that you are not the 99%. Not even close. I am not even sure if you are 1%. Most member views seem to be so extreme that they are going to alienate the real 99%.
You want change, we get it. You will not desist until you achieve your ends! Great! The only problems nobody knows what you are trying to accomplish. You probably should have had a precise objective before your movement carelessly had people get arrested. People grasped onto that one individuals set of "demands" as laughable as they were because he seems to be the only one who can organize his thoughts. Why organize a bunch of protests and think of what you want out of them later.
I came to your sight to see what you were about, and after an hour of reading, I don't know anything more about the movement, other than there is clearly no direction. You remind me a lot of the the politicians that you seems to be vilifying. You don't have a plan, you can't agree on objectives, but you want to bitch about everybody else's plan.
Do the economy a favor and take all the donations you have received, and all the man hours spend organizing goalless protests and donate the time and money to a worthwhile charity.
I, too, am new to this site and agree that without an end game, what is the point other than a lot of people sitting around shouting slogans, playing hacky sack, singing in circles, etc. While our system of government is imperfect, what type of government or way of life would you prefer. Me, while I am certainly not in the top 1%, I am in the top 10% of wage earners in the county and I got there through hard work. I'm 50 years old now and have two children the same age as many of you. Of course I worry for them, one is at Rutgers, the other graduated from a technical school as an LPN. Both have loans, that my husband and I will help them to pay off, but they will have to pay as well. Both worked all through high school and through college. I agree that the government never should have bailed out banks, mortgage companies, automobile companies, etc. I agree that we should bring our men and women home from Iraq and Afghanistan, but I also would never accept in my country anything other than the Constitution which allows for the pursuit of happiness, not the guarantee. If each of the wall street protestors would take their creative energy and put it either to finding a job, or creating their own job, I doubt the streets would be filled....just a thought
Get off your high horse and don't pigeonhole and marginalize us as hippies. I'm not a hippie. I don't play hacky-sack. I don't own one and don't know anyone that does. Thanks.
"...then they laugh at you, then they fight you." We're somewhere between those two steps.
You can ask "what's the point" and blame individual responsibility as many others (especially of your age who are already financially secure) have. You can wait and see if the problems we're experiencing ever bleed into your life within your lifetime and then get angry. If you like.
It would be wiser not to assume our grievances are moot just because you happen to be perfectly comfortable at the moment. Want the truth? I'm comfortable too. I have a job and a place to live and no fear of going hungry any time soon.
That means nothing though. If you take the time to research how the money system works in this country since the inception of the federal reserve system, you'll see fundamental flaws that must inevitably lead to problems such as the ones young people claim to face today.
Every generation blames the next for complaining too much. It's an easy thing to do when you're too tired to think about fighting for anything.
hate to tell you, but I wasn't born yesterday (obviously) and I worked my ass off (two jobs actually from 18-30); my husband at 52 works three jobs (that's right, three), not only for financial gain but because he is a teacher and a coach of young kids and he loves what he does. When I got out of high school, the unemployment rate in 1979 was 14%; home mortgage loans were hovering around 15%; there were gas shortages where you could only buy gas on an odd or even day depending upon your license plate....so, get off my high horse, don't think so buddy, why don't you get off your ass, stop complaining and whining, And you think I'm not fighting for anything. I'm fighting for my kids' futures from an out of control government spending my hard earned money (and I'm sure your parents') as well and throwing it out the window. You think 'people my age' never experienced downsizing? losing a job? when my husband lost his job and we were living on my secretary salary as he went back to school (and yeah, we had student loans),with two kids, mortgage, the whole nine yards, we didn't have time to sit around and complain, we just did it. So why don't you get off your high horse of assuming anything about me and my family....
You started the assumptions with your hippie claims about us, so I figured it would be fair game to return the favor. If you'd rather agree to cease that bull on both sides, I'm fine obliging.
Sounds like you've experienced a lot of the problems we're complaining about, and are angry at the government for at least some of it.
There's still some room over on Liberty and State st. They'd be glad to have you.
If you feel you've been hit by some of the government's incompetence, perhaps you'd be willing to open your mind to the possibility that there are other problems of which you've simply not been made aware yet.
your right, I made assumptions about all of those at the protests and that wasn't right to do, my apologies. Of course me and my husband have been hit with some of the same problems, as most people, no matter where they end up on the economic ladder. I don't consider myself republican/democrat/independent, etc. I do, however, consider myself an American. Our political system is broken, we continue to vote in the same individuals over and over again and actually expect change? I agree that those on Wall Street who were complicit in the meltdown should, in fact, be prosecuted at least, but not unless we have cells next door for the politicians who have allowed, and in fact, caused so much of this meltdown. Not every bank on Wall Street played in the ponzi scheme. One of my first jobs was on Wall Street at Brown Brothers Harriman and I have a brother that works for Lazard Freres. He is not a 1%, but works with some of them. Generalizations of any kind, including those made by you and I about each other, are dangerous. I want the best for all in this country, I want opportunities for every young person (especially my own two kids) to live freely and follow their dreams, whatever they may be. I wish you the best as well..
Check out this Declaration of Occupation from the General Assembly: http://nycga.cc/2011/09/30/declaration-of-the-occupation-of-new-york-city/
Kieth Olberman also recites it in this video: http://youtu.be/N8o3peQq79Q
w e don't need a leader, we need everyone to take real personal responsibility. asking for leaders is how responsibility is avoided. as for the other points you make about organization ... agreed. its come down to the people have created a new board because the organization of the so called movement epic fails. http://s11.zetaboards.com/occupytogether/forum/3025699/
Ron Paul can lead me any day, if he's willing.
"...but you want to bitch about everybody else's plan."
Don't mistake the forum for the movement. The forum is overrun with bitchers and moaners. As I've said before, an organized internet arm of the movement would be a great resource, especially in showing people (such as yourself) what we're about. We really don't have that yet.
If you want to see the true positivity of the movement right now, you'll have to go to Manhattan and see the people standing out in the cold day after day singing, sleeping on the ground, supporting each other, and getting beaten.
As far as coherent goals, it's tough when the "enemy" is so incoherent. But we're trying. Don't count us out just because you don't see a clear slogan or leader to cling to. There are basic commonalities that unite our goals, and we will articulate them for those who demand that before being able to take us seriously.
Watch this video for a good taste of what we're about:
Let me try to explain. All social movements have an ebb and a flow, they start and stop in phases. They aren't marketing and reelection campaigns. This is a grassroots movement expressing malcontent with the economy and those who pulls the strings in the shadows. Every aspect of life doesn't have to have written objective or a marketing slogan. At this point, the movement is simply a gathering of really pissed off people looking for answers. Does that help you understand?
There is malcontent. Got it. Check. Now what? What do you propose we do to fix it? If we are just here to scream, I've got to go. I have a 5 year old that screams enough for me. Good Lord. You have people showing up here BEGGING you to tell them what you stand for so they can support you and the best you can come up with is philosophical mumbo jumbo.
When your 5 year-old screams, do you ignore him/her? Or do you assume there's something wrong that they can't themselves articulate yet?
Faced with an enemy as broad, incoherent, and powerful as we face, I feel rather like a 5 year-old screaming at the adult world because something is terribly wrong, that I wish I could define in pretty words so others would understand, but I can't yet.
In a way, all we know is that something is wrong. We're in the terribly weak position of having to have decided to come together as a first step, to decide that we all simply agree that there is a problem, and make that reality heard. From the onset, it was a conscious decision to do this first, because something needs to be done regardless of not knowing exactly what, yet.
If you have more pressing concerns and can't be bothered with people who suffer yet can't tell you exactly what their plan is, then by all means go do something more worthwhile. Tend to your screaming 5 year-old. And let him or her know that when they're all grown up, they'll need to be able to tell you exactly what they want before you can feel any sympathy.
Powerful statement. Thank you. As for the person originally asking, I'm not a kid and I'm not a hippie (but I think hippies are great). I am almost 40, have two kids, live in the burbs, etc. I only share that to help dissipate your stereotype of who is part of this movement. There are all sorts of folk here.
One thing that most have in common is that we all see there are large problems that need to be addressed in our current system. We all think that our government is too much in bed with large corporation, that our government is being wasteful, that we are losing our power to affect the direction of our country.
Yes, there are many of what would be traditionally called "liberals" here. But there are many that are not and ALL are welcomed if they can prevent themselves from buying into the media perceptions that are being put forth and think that this is about one political persuasion vs. the other. By all means, come to Manhattan no matter your political label - you will find yourself having a lot in common with everyone there.
As for goals/ demands ... sometimes people have to actually come together to even begin discussing those. How else do you suggest everyone that has been displeased in their tiny little corner of life figure out joint goals?? They have to GATHER first and DISCUSS. What you see is the media highlights of a protest here and there. But these people are spending day and night for weeks talking, discussing, sharing. It's out of THAT where the solutions will come from. These are big problems that we're talking about. It is big changes that are wanted (not bandaids) - that takes time. Dont' buy into the idea that if demands/ goals aren't put out within x (place some random imaginary deadline) then the group is aimless or disorganized or ambivalent. Great solutions take time. This is a group of people that are aiming for the long-haul.
Don't come here trying to figure out "what this group is about" ... this group is about YOU. It's about us. It's about what WE want it to be, what we need it to be. You are here now and you can be part of the solution. You, as much as anyone else, can come offer solutions and ideas. That's the beauty. It's not a wrapped package that you either agree with or disagree with. It's a work in progress that you can help create.
I agree. I was at the protests and people were moving in so many different directions that it was unreal. Everybody had a different list of problems and solutions. It seems that everybody can agree that the current system isn't working. Easy solution: get another system! If there was a conversation about a "resource based economy" I think that a lot of people would agree that it's a doable solution to the problems our society is facing.
I think you're going to have a hard time convincing the American people that they should move to a collective system that relieves them of their private property and their freedom of self-determination. But then again, a global collective system would require 100% participation to work, so I guess you'll just have to shoot the decenters--for the greater good, of course.
There. No need to convince people.
Well this is the first I have heard "Resource Based Economy" used in this forum or at the protest. It certainly would be a wonderful solution to this flawed system, only problem is people need to be educated about it. To find out more check out "The Venus Project" @ http://www.thevenusproject.com/
Finally!! Someone that gets it! I've been posting here for a few hours about the venus project to no avail. It seems like such a great solution to all of our problems and I was hoping that it would get support here.
People just don't know about it, even though Jacques Fresco has been talking about it for years.
i noticed their site is slow today, so hopefully a lot of people are checking it out.
Yeah I noticed that as well. I have been directing people there myself so hopefully the slowness is indicative of high traffic.
I agree too. This is why OWS will not be Arab Spring, if things continue as it is.
Amen! I, too, came to this site interested and wondering if I agrees with their objectives. Now I wonder if they even have a purpose other than to vent frustration and discuss outlandish theories that cannot work in principle. If you want change, DEFINE the change you want. Do actual research to determine the costs and benefits to society. You cannot simply claim you are the 99% if even YOU don't know what you believe as a group. And, trust me, the majority of the real 99% will not take you seriously if you continue to present ridiculous "solutions" that aren't researched and presented. They will be turned off my I'll-conceived pipe dreams that you cannot back up with actual data. Honestly, I was disappointed.
You wan't answers? Look up Declaration Of Independence and United States Constitution.
Now look at today's reality.
I'm very familiar with both. Now YOU look them up and tell me, specifically, what you ares proposing to fix what has been wronged. Remember, I came here WANTING to support you. I'm simply asking you to tell me what I would be supporting. I blindly join with no one.
Please, don't use me as a reference for your decision to support this movement. I'm just 1 person with no authority.
I can't vouch for what the media says: but for me - and to simplify it. Bring back the checks and balances that was put into place to keep to government from getting out of hand or controlled or against the true will of the people in this nation.
Did you want to go to Iraq? I doubt it. Someone did. Who? Why?
Does it feel like this country is in war? by looking at the TV? or do we have to see Kim Kardashians ass?
Do you know what Bin Laden said officially was the reason he hit the towers? Or does that not matter to you?
I can't wake you up from a lifetime of mindcontrol with 1 post. Can't happen.
"Remember, I came here WANTING to support you" is your words....... why would you come to a movement "wanting" to support it but don't know what they stand for?
Your words, not mine. I trust noone - Who are you? and Who do you represent? lol
Wow, well said. Really?! What does that even mean. Instead of hiding behind these documents like you have a well thought out agenda, specifically spell out what today is in violation with the Declaration of Independence of the US Constitution. I will be anxiously waiting!
Your right sir, I don't know the ins and outs of the documents. But I do know conflict of interest when I see it. Lots of conflicts of interests in the upper crust.
Let me simplify it for you. I'm the President but I wouldn't be President if my "friends" didn't pay for my advertisement(campaign). Now let's see, this bill I want to pass that would benefit the"people" is what I want to do - But - my friends say they won't be my friend anymore if I don't do what they want. After all It was their advertisement money that got me here.
Conflict of Interest eliminated from all sectors of the Government.
So many reasons. I'm not here to convert people, I thought all the people here would have been converts already.