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Forum Post: Divide and Conquer: a Brief Primer and Some Relevant Points

Posted 11 years ago on Oct. 9, 2011, 7:32 p.m. EST by Boletus (125)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Throughout the long sordid history of mankind, oppression has been a continuous plague on people around the world. And many rightly ask, how can the few so effectively control the many? Are just dumb animals, is it God's will, does the fear of violence keep us from implementing a solution, or do the controllers have some secret weapon against which we are powerless? It will come as no surprise to many that the last choice, a "secret" weapon, is the limiting factor. The name of that weapon is Divide and Conquer.

Fiendish in its simplicity and efficacy, this weapon is actually the only tool of the controllers beside brute force, and that still requires dividing a population against itself. It has taken many forms over the ages. In more primitive times, one merely needed to provide more food and superficial privileges to a small number of the strongest warriors. In many prison camps, one prisoner is made to feel he is better than the rest and given a big stick, while the guards carry guns. And the guards spend few bullets, since the prisoner with the stick does their work for them.

In more sophisticated societies, these simplistic techniques have proven inadequate, but the core principal is as potent as ever. Fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD) are used to divide the population against itself, preferably with large numbers on each side. Blacks vs. whites, catholics vs. protestants, south versus north, democrats vs. republicans, poor vs. middle class, suburbanites vs. city dwellers, and on and on and on. In the last two centuries, this machine has been polished and developed to the point where it is a sophisticated and lethal weapon against most popular uprisings.

Now I am seeing a lot of talk that seems directed toward dividing this movement; some of it intentional attempts at division (hence destruction) via shills and trolls, and some of it perhaps resulting unintentionally from people's preconceptions and negative reactions to things outside their comfortable realm. Toward rectifying some of what I see as divisiveness that this movement must overcome to succeed, I will offer some observations and opinions. And bear in mind, that's all they are, one person's perspective and unsolicited advice.



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[-] 2 points by Boletus (125) 11 years ago

Divide and Conquer (cont.)

Are the funds being donated to OWS being funneled to a bank account in Nicaragua (or anywhere else) to benefit a few greedy con artists? I've seen that claim presented in several posts, and I've seen refutations. If it is true, that is a shame, but you know what? I don't give a shit. I see people on the ground and working from their homes exerting heroic effort into achieving their common goals, which I share. I don't give a rat's ass about whose bank account holds the funds, as long as the people on the ground and working from home have the resources they need. And it appears they do.

Is union participation going to derail the movement into a tool for corrupt union bosses? Well, I suppose if we let those union bosses direct and control the output of the general assemblies, perhaps so. But if the core principals of the movement remain pure and union bosses have no more say than the rest of us, I am not worried about that. Let's remember that it is the union members that we want at our side, for without them we are less than 99% of anything. And they bring, along with their numbers, significant battle-hardened experience at mobilizing for social change, both through protest and political action. Forget union bosses; Ayn Rand wrote fine fantasy novels, but unions are ultimately controlled by their members. If they need to do housecleaning, that is their problem.

Does politician XYZ endorsing or acknowledging this movement dilute its message? Again, if we let them try to represent the movement, that could be a concern. This is where our new-fangled communication devices are very useful. We talk and discuss and reach consensus, and we speak for ourselves. If we have to tell a particular politician to fuck off, we are capable of doing that. But if anything is going to change this country, short of complete anarchy and devastation of our existing social structure, politicians of one sort or another will be required, since this is, technically, a representative democracy, not a direct democracy.

Should politician XYZ be allowed to participate? Yes (see above). However, they should be required to wait their turn and follow the same rules under the same conditions as anyone else. Let them have their say, then we discuss it and seek consensus as usual. And a politician may wish to support the movement, but we are not obliged to support them.

Does pundit/blogger/etc. XYZ have the definitive answer, and we should all get behind her or him? No, otherwise none of us would need to be doing this. Again, get your favorite pundit to participate in a GA just like anyone else, and give their ideas equal treatment.

Is their some singular action we can take that will fix everything once and for all, for example, burn down the banks, flush all of our money down the toilets at exactly 15:00 UTC, all sing folk songs at the same time, all read some one book, recall or elect specific elected officials, meditate and go vegan, outlaw farting, etc? No. This is going to be a long, complex battle, and many steps and new decisions will be required over the lifetime of this project. I know, it's a bummer, but unavoidable.

Can violence win this struggle for us? Absolutely not. 99% of America would prefer not to riot in the streets against the police and military. It may well become violent. If the 0.01% feel that there backs are truly against the wall, they may pull out the stops and shoot us down in the streets. Maybe not. But if it does come to that, it means we have almost won, and have one final painful test to pass. Let them instigate violence in every instance, and resist as peacefully as you can. I will not presume to tell another who is on the ground what to do if they are thrust in harm's way, and fighting may be the only choice during the end game, but the more we peacefully resist, the stronger we are.

Well this post has become almost long enough, so I invite others to continue the discussion here and everywhere else. Consensus requires debate, and effective debate requires both sides to be able to relinquish preconceptions and consider the other side. That is how we stay united, and that is how we will win.

[-] 1 points by Arca (1) 11 years ago

I have to say I agree with you, division is what will kill this and any movement for social change. There must be sufficient force placed on a stationary object in order for it to move. The language of analogy is fantastic, imagine a giant, corporate greed boulder squashing us all. If we all push and pull at different times and different directions it will never move, but if we all say "1...2...3..HEAVE!" we can throw that crushing boulder off of us. Note that this is analogy, I agree that one grand motion in truth will not suddenly change the situation, but consistent discussion of ideas and action against the status quo is the "HEAVE" I speak of. My opinion, which very well may not be worth a good God damn, is that we must foster love for one another and also cultivate an air of responsibility to our fellow humans. This love and responsibility not only dictates we must change the way our system functions, but also dictates non-violence as you say. Good read, friend.

[-] 1 points by sudoname (1001) from Berkeley, CA 11 years ago

This is excellent and I enjoyed reading it!

[-] 1 points by gawdoftruth (3698) from Santa Barbara, CA 11 years ago

awesome work, thanks! heres more on the same subject...

to get serious requires a few things they don't have. like chat admins who aren't ego serving propaganda tools, a wiki, 1001 sub forums, an actual game plan, a straight up political platform... you know.. basic organizational things sane people do BEFORE protesting.. like figure out a diplomacy and logic centered metaprocess to give their chatadmins so that they don't really just drive out even more people than the trolls. Adminatrolla. trollaAdmin. Whats the difference to somebody whos got the truth facing a propaganda tool abusing admin powers to push their agenda? how can you prevent such a thing? Metaprocess. did i mention metaprocess? and science diplomacy science psychology science sociology and all those textbooks to read B4 protesting?

you can't have capitalism without a free(SLAVE) market. but you can have a free market without capitalism. And thats strangely the only way it CAN work.

Marketing 101 was fascinating. I admit thats a lot less than a bachelors but its sure more than enough to see whats really going on given the other things I know. Capitalism is not the problem since it does not exist. corporate oligarchy is the problem. capitalism has never been tried. I am a democracy guy. in order for real democracy to function a free market system is required. Thats not capitalism. thats a free market system. there is a subtle difference there which most people would miss. I will again repeat. Neither capitalism nor marxism nor communism nor socialism has ever existed. All of those governments were oligarchy pretending to be something as a con scam. Telling that simple truth gets one banned out of the Chat by either a capitalist or a socialist whos pissed you just said their pet ideology isn't real. It isn't. anybody who thinks that it is is accidentally playing for team corporate oligarchy as a tool. the ONLY system worth talking about is DEMOCRACY. how democracy HANDLES a FREE MARKET system is dynamic and interesting and NOT capitalism.

o. yes. no. yes. what? making change is not reliant on changing the money system one tenth as much as it is on changing the informational ecology. Going to a gold standard as an idea is a proof of ignorance, not a solution. Really the end game is we evolve out of money. To do that we evolve first new currencies and new economic strategies. this leads to economic singularity in about 50 years. If everyone is a millionaire how much you get depends on exactly the material valuation of that money. Which is to say that by the time money becomes obsolete everyone will live like the current millionaire. Tangible items to other tangible items? the real economy is about ideas, change the ideas and everything changes. the problem with the tangible economy is it does not change; its a static reality. you can't make a meaningful gold standard with only enough gold to represent on millionth of the economy. You can make a purely imaginal money system work; but it has to be subject to moral and ethical laws. This is about pinning down those moral and ethical laws and implementing them in new currencies; not trying to imagine a control freak impossible non solution because of the simplicity with which you go about thinking over the problem.

once again. there has never been a socialist or capitalist economy. in all instances such nations were oligarchies. using a mask and a con scam and telling their dupes and pwns that they were something other than oligarchy. the big hump to get over is that the USA oligarchy and the Soviet oligarchy are in on this lie against the rest of us TOGETHER. Neither of them was ever anything other than an oligarchy. both claimed some other system in order to have US fight over the ideals of THAT system while they secretly shafted us all playing a completely different game.



[-] 1 points by atki4564 (1259) from Lake Placid, FL 11 years ago

Agreed, division leads nowhere, and although I'm all in favor of taking down today's ineffective and inefficient Top 10% Management Group of Business & Government, there's only one way to do it – by fighting bankers as bankers ourselves. Consequently, I have posted a 1-page Summary of the Strategic Legal Policies, Organizational Operating Structures, and Tactical Investment Procedures necessary to do this at:




if you want to support a Presidential Candidate Committee at AmericansElect.org in support of the above bank-focused platform.

[-] 1 points by sudoname (1001) from Berkeley, CA 11 years ago

In regards to trolling and infighting, I wonder if it's built into our culture to quickly judge arguments and reply with something insulting? Is it like this in other countries?

For example, when someone mentions communism, someone will almost always attack them, like they're trying to impress their social clique. Has the news media made us this way?

[-] 1 points by Boletus (125) 11 years ago

Centuries of well-directed effort by the 0.01%. It might seem random, but it is not. It might seem innate but it is not. They have had a lot of time and resources to hone their technique, as you will see with increasing clarity as the days go by.

If I had to bet which side would win, I'd go with the 1%, but I sure as hell hope that the 99% grab this outside chance and run as hard and long as possible with it.