Showing posts with label Oakland. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Oakland. Show all posts

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Capitalism's storm troopers

Me on Oct. 12:
Contrary to the propaganda on the right, the Occupy Wall Street people aren't just a collection of angry Marxists, anarchists and free spirits looking for an excuse to take off their clothes. From what I can see, there are a lot of "normal" people out there, too -- folks who tried to play by the rules and got burned by a system with an ace up its sleeve.

Their dignity is under assault, their checking accounts are depleted, and their options are few amid the Great Recession. It is them I feel for. I feel for the eccentrics, too -- just more in a
"That's just Junior. Don't hurt him -- he's odd, but he's harmless" kind of way.

Now here's what I fear.

Some Angry Marxist Guy -- or maybe some Breitbart vigilante, some self-appointed defender of capitalism and Americanism -- is going to do something stupid. And then some cop is going to do something stupid.

And then some ordinary Joe -- peacefully taking it to the streets because the street is all that's left for the redress of grievances -- is going to be the one killed by the cop's stupidity.

I remember the '60s and how cities burned after just such a scenario. Think of what could happen in this
tinderbox of a country we've built for ourselves, where those at the top have everything to lose and too many down below have nothing left to lose.
AND NOW cops in Oakland, Calif., have fired a tear-gas canister -- point blank -- into the skull of an Iraq War veteran peacefully protesting the thus-successful insurgency by crony capitalists against the principles of social justice and equality under the law.

Digital Journal:
Scott Olsen, a two-tour veteran of the Iraq war, suffered a cracked skull during a police crackdown on Oakland Occupy protesters Tuesday. Now, demonstrators are taking that up as a central rallying point, mulling over calling for a Nov. 2 general strike.

An Occupy protester in Oakland carried a sign saying, "Ask Scott Olsen What He Thinks about Homeland Security". The 24-year old Olsen was critically injured Tuesday night when he was hit in the head with a projectile either thrown or shot by police using tear gas to clear protesters. He suffered a fractured skull in the incident.

And although the New York Times reports that Mr. Olsen’s condition is improving, his injury and the symbolism of a Marine who faced enemy fire unscathed only to be attacked at home is resulting in a surge of sympathy, as well as calls for solidarity among the scores of Occupy encampments everywhere. The Iraq Veterans Against the War, of which Olsen is a member, say that Thursday night, camps in some major cities including New York, Chicago and Philadelphia are going to participate in a vigil for Mr. Olsen. The groups director says,
“I think people would have been outraged even had this been a civilian, but the fact that he survived two tours of duty and then to have this happen to him, people are really upset about that.”
WHEN WE make an idol of an economic system -- in this case, capitalism -- it is no surprise when its high priests start offering up human sacrifices to their god. What the Occupy movement is is the realization that the sacrifice is us -- the "99 percent."

Eleven score and 16 years ago, Americans took up arms against those who would sacrifice them to the great mercantile gods of the British Empire. Today, homegrown tyrants in Washington, on Wall Street and in Oakland's city hall dare frustrated, overwhelmed and angry Americans to do the same.

Now we see the corrupt puppet masters who pull the strings of our dysfunctional American empire setting local "internal security forces" even against veterans who survived multiple tours in this nation's disastrous wars fought for specious reasons. May they all -- somehow -- reap exactly what they've sown before a bloodbath begins.