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Forum Post: PULLING BACK THE CURTAIN: How NONVIOLENT ACTION can restore our republic. PER CITIBANK 1 person 1 vote is total game changer.

Posted 1 year ago on Jan. 18, 2013, 3:17 a.m. EST by therising (6643)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

INTRODUCTORY NOTE: Here is my view on one way we can make real progress for real people on the ground AND grow the movement exponentially at the same time: http://occupywallst.org/forum/we-could-do-this-the-easy-way-or-the-hard-way/ . At that link, I not only list the goals but 2 methods of achieving them. Both are nonviolent and nonviolence is something we need to adhere to across the board without question. If the 8 goals were achieved, it would not be the end all be all, but it would get the corporate foot off our neck long enough to allow us to focus on the even deeper issues.

The post below assumes you have read the info at the link above.


It's time to create some nonviolent TENSION.

What I am talking about here is healthy nonviolent protest as described by Martin Luther King, Jr.

King said we can't be afraid of the word tension and described the use of active non-violent resistance as follows in his “Letter from Birmingham Jail”:

"Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks to so dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored. My citing the creation of tension as part of the work of the nonviolent-resister may sound rather shocking. But I must confess that I am not afraid of the word "tension." I have earnestly opposed violent tension, but there is a type of constructive, nonviolent tension which is necessary for growth. . . The purpose of our direct-action program is to create a situation so crisis-packed that it will inevitably open the door to negotiation.”

Under "the hard way" described at the link at the top of this post, legislators will feel nonviolent tension on multiple fronts:

A) They and their staff will not be able to get past the nonviolent protests in order to get to their offices.

B) They would also feel the tension of patriotic peaceful Americans interrupting business as usual in a way that is a national and world headline, thereby forcing them to answer a lot of difficult questions.. 800,000 people peacefully gathered and nonviolently blocking the entrances to the Capitol complex in DC is a huge news story. And with that news story, comes questions about why people are doing this. And when people answer the why and list the 8 things and explain that Congress didn't respond to the easy way (petition w/ millions of signatures, letters etc), it will be clear to those watching that:

  1. The 8 legislative demands are actually common sense and have wide support among American public

  2. Those patriotic everyday Americans who are protesting nonviolently in DC are doing so because they tried the easy way and it didn't work. They're here because their voices weren't being heard at all.

Then you have yourself a virtuous cycle and people are openly debating the list of 8 around water coolers, break rooms, board rooms, union halls, schools, senior centers and dinner tables across the country. These millions and millions and millions of folks who are paying attention and discussing these issues VOTE and, the last time I checked, 99 votes for a politician beats 1 vote for a politician. . . And a politician is likely to pay attention to those who are getting him or her elected (just like they do now in a different way with the corporations and rich people who are getting them elected).

People get that money has corrupted politics and this large protest and resulting national and world press will bring endless discussion of that. This discussion will reveal that we, the 99% have more in common than we have separating us. And once we realize that, we are then in a position to make decisions from a position of unified strenfth rather than demands from a position of divided weakness.

Now, think about that. As the virtuous cycle raises awareness, the 99% begin to unify and focus on issues like those provided at the link above. And because of that "pesky 1 person 1 vote thing" that that famous senior Citibank analyst was lamenting a few years back in a message to its wealthiest clients ( http://our99angrypercent.wordpress.com/2011/11/27/download-citigroup-plutonomy-memos/ AND http://politicalgates.blogspot.com/2011/12/citigroup-plutonomy-memos-two-bombshell.html?m=1 ), for every one vote the powerful corporatists have, there are 99 for the people.

I like those odds.

Think, then, about how a protest that is, on the face of it, about 8 pieces of legislation ends up helping in its own small way to unify the 99% and transfer political power from the 99% to the 1%. Read at the link 2 paragraphs above about what Citibank said rich people need to be afraid of. Read the whole thing, but here are a few lines just to wet your whistle:

"Low-end developed market labor might not have much economic power, but it does have equal voting power with the rich. . . A third threat comes from the potential social backlash. To use Rawls-ian analysis, the invisible hand stops working. Perhaps one reason that societies allow plutonomy, is because enough of the electorate believe they have a chance of becoming a Pluto-participant. Why kill it off, if you can join it? In a sense this is the embodiment of the “American dream”. But if voters feel they cannot participate, they are more likely to divide up the wealth pie, rather than aspire to being truly rich. Could the plutonomies die because the dream is dead, because enough of society does not believe they can participate? The answer is of course yes. But we suspect this is a threat more clearly felt during recessions, and periods of falling wealth, than when average citizens feel that they are better off. There are signs around the world that society is unhappy with plutonomy - judging by how tight electoral races are."

That 1 person 1 vote thing is what the 1% is most afraid of. They know that they're screwed if we ever figure out that we have the power and that we the 99% are all in the same boat. That's when the 1 person 1 vote thing makes them powerless.

That's when we get to reenact the fabulous scene from the Wizard of Oz, where the curtain is pulled back to reveal that the entity so feared all along was just a little guy barking into a microphone. (here's 1 minute video clip of that scene: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YWyCCJ6B2WE&feature=youtube_gdata_player ).

We have the power in our hands to pull back that curtain for all to see and turn off what George Saunders called "the brain dead megaphone".

Let's do it.

:)

30 Comments

30 Comments


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[-] 3 points by geminijlw (176) from Mechanicsburg, PA 1 year ago

PBS will present Frontline's new documentary on "why Wall Street CEO's have escaped prosecution for mortgage fraud" tomorrow night. You can see the thirty-second Preview at http://video.pbs.org/video/2320302253

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Great. Thanks very much.

[-] 2 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 1 year ago

Reject anyone who accepts donations from anything related to citibank.

Plain and simple.

You are either here or you are there.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Man, these Citibank folks really make it plain what allows plutonomy (benefit of the few). And they're cold and calculating about it. We should always stick to nonviolence. One way we can push back is to boycott the institution and those that help support it. The choices we make with where we put our money are important. But careful consumer choices are not enough. Please see this short TED video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6rAgHcuYtE&feature=youtube_gdata_player . Shows the bigger picture.

[-] 2 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 1 year ago

I think you have the plan laid out perfectly. Plan, Organize and then the next step is usually Leading. Meaning its time to find some people who would want to carry this out. Which is usually the hardest part. The planning and organizing can be done in spare time, at the organizer's pace. The leading is when all the moving parts come into the play, the headaches and the costs (signs, markers, and then other props tend to add up quickly. I always figure on a beer or meal afterwards too).

[-] 3 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

I think you are correct that things get more time intensive and challenging when you get into the meat of it. I also think that we need to have many smaller actions first before we would try to plan a larger action such as the one I've described above. Those smaller actions could potentially raise awareness to a level that would allow proper turn out at a much bigger event like the one described. I do believe that we are moving in the right direction, however, and despite the perceived decline in support for occupied, I think there is as much support for major change now as there was in the fall of 2011, if not more.

I think if you did a poll of Americans TODAY, you would find that they don't feel a whole lot different about big banks and the relationship between corporations and politicians now than they did in the fall of 2011.

And in November of 2011, polls of major national news outlets showed that 40 - 50% of Americans supported Occupy Wall Street.

The silent majority is out there waiting to connect with a way to express themselves. . . Them speaking up depends on 2 things in my mind: one on one interaction and larger group interaction (especially nonviolent direct action which can raise awareness exponentially.

Please visit these 2 short links when you have time:


WE HAVE THE POWER (using direct action and web in tandem):  http://occupywallst.org/forum/we-dont-see-the-power-we-have-in-our-hands-to-tran/



The Emperor and his Clothes: HOW ONE PERSON RAISING THEIR VOICE TO SPEAK THE TRUTH CAN MAKE A REAL DIFFERENCE -- the tenor of the times---   http://occupywallst.org/forum/we-have-the-power-to-turn-this-world-around-this-o/

[-] 1 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 1 year ago

So who is going to put it into effect?

We need empire state of mind thinking....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UjsXo9l6I8

Or maybe something a bit harder:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=moUwd7Zax-0

Regardless, until people say fuck it, we run this thing. it doesnt matter...

Same ish, different pile. People need to get out of their own way.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28452) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Thanks for the re-tweet Marlow. U R a sweetheart.

Sharing is Care-ing.

Tell the world people.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28452) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

BTW - TWEETED - good food 4 thought.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Thanks very much! :)

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (28452) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Thx for posting.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Cheers :)

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28452) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Back at ya.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28452) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

To Feed The Awarness Of The Public Need - Need To Get Involved Stay Involved and Take Non-violent Action - but continuous action none the less - please Share/Circulate/Forward/Spread information/articles/programs that display the ills of the world that we face. And remedies that are readily available to take/implement NOW.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Yes! We need to live it! :)

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (28452) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Every single day.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Exactly!

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (28452) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Life and living does not get more real. Unless you are active in life.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

That's a great way of putting it. What do you think it will take to get a virtuous cycle going wherein each one teaches one.... And it goes exponential?

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (28452) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Did you see my PM with the communications mix?

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

I did but haven't had a chance to review the links.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (28452) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Well I am playing with the idea of visual attachments to flesh out a communication.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Thanks. I'll check out the links.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

It's time to create some healthy nonviolent tension.

[-] 0 points by elf3 (2506) 1 year ago

I like your enthusiasm and I'm not trying to extinguish it I'm really asking "how?" here to someone who still has as much hope as you maybe you can see solutions I've given up on but - this March below never got media coverage 800,000 plus women largest march in history. I'm feeling very tired and cynical - how do you get heard? Does protest matter? Does it make a difference?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/March_for_Women's_Lives

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Well, my view is that, to get heard, you need to make some noise. That may involve intentionally creating healthy nonviolent tension via nonviolent direct action.

Martin Luther King, Jr. explained the use of active non-violent resistance as follows in his “Letter from Birmingham Jail”:

"Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks to so dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored. My citing the creation of tension as part of the work of the nonviolent-resister may sound rather shocking. But I must confess that I am not afraid of the word "tension." I have earnestly opposed violent tension, but there is a type of constructive, nonviolent tension which is necessary for growth. . . The purpose of our direct-action program is to create a situation so crisis-packed that it will inevitably open the door to negotiation.”

Like it or not, we citizens whose political voice has been increasingly drowned out by corporate influence may need to engage in sit ins, walkouts, strikes, blockades and much more.

[-] 1 points by elf3 (2506) 1 year ago

to get heard you need to have the media cover it - how? In those days we had the fairness doctrine and the media was not completely owned by one person like Rupert Murdoch. Unless you can high jack the airways hunger games style I'm seeing a media blackout. Could occupy do some kind of major internet event? Across the web internet strike ?

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Eager to hear your thoughts on my answers to your question above.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

PS - You need to think about how clever Gandhi and King were. People paint them as saints but they were very shrewd when it came to the press. They would always make sure the press was in just the right place at just the right time when a nonviolent direct action occurred that would stir the public. And today we're actually even better off than they in some ways because we have the Internet and social media. In addition to traditional media, the word of protest and purpose behind it can also be spread by BYPASSING corporate media.

King and Gandhi also knew how to make a news story. King INTENTIONALLY did whatever would garner the most telling response. He and his fellow protesters NONVIOLENTLY PROVOKED AUTHORITIES AND 1% to show their true colors.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Well, I think there are two main things to consider:

A). How we can use direct nonviolent action to both USE and BYPASS corporate media. There's a way to do both at the same time and even occasionally actually get the corporate owned media to advertise for alternative media

B). How we can also, in compliment, spread the truth in other ways

Please see these two links:

WE HAVE THE POWER (using direct action and web in tandem):  http://occupywallst.org/forum/we-dont-see-the-power-we-have-in-our-hands-to-tran/



The Emperor and his Clothes: HOW ONE PERSON RAISING THEIR VOICE TO SPEAK THE TRUTH CAN MAKE A REAL DIFFERENCE -- the tenor of the times---   http://occupywallst.org/forum/we-have-the-power-to-turn-this-world-around-this-o/