On Thu, Dec 6, 2012 at 11:45 AM, Paul Tanner <email@example.com> wrote:
> > You did not address the truth of what I said. (Yes, most of the top 1% > of the income distribution are not involved in "buying" politicians. > So what. I does not change the truth of what I said.) >
I think I'm fairly up to date on patterns of income distribution. That wasn't my point.
Yes, the money games people play greatly favor those who already have quite a bit to start with. The game is rigged, the deck is stacked.
It's difficult to get "dealt in" and the Horatio Alger stories about doing so are worth mocking -- which is what Michael Moore did when he came to Portland that time.
His thesis (for that talk) is the "strike it rich" story, the rags-to-riches narrative, is what gets people to postpone thinking at all realistically.
They put their hopes in the lottery and other such stupidities.
Of course there's irony in all this because MM himself has become wealthy enough to qualify as 1% in the minds of many Occupiers, some of whom taunted him to this effect when he came to visit.
The Citizens United 'Occupy Unmasked' (recent documentary) shows Michael's house and implies he's a hypocrite for having such a big one.
> > I addressed you condemning the Occupy movement, abd doing this your > using language suggesting that you deny the truth of what I said. > >
I was not "condemning the Occupy movement".
On the contrary, I'm objectively embedded in its anarchic leadership. My friends and I were deeply involved in providing food logistics, and helped start Occupy Portland on Oct 6. We took the park and set up the food tent. Everything followed from that.
Portland's Occupy was quite a bit bigger than most of the others and received a lot of attention. We also pulled out before we were pushed out, after a giant party in which many thousands of people streamed into town to register their approval of what we had done. Most the main tents were gone the next morning, though those wishing a confrontation with police got what they wanted too (it's a free country, we didn't force everyone to follow us).
My guess is I was and am a few thousand percent more active in Occupy than you were or are. The people who helped make it happen are still my friends and associates. We're still serving free meals to homeless people at the original site near City Hall (on Tuesdays), with surplus going to Right to Dream Too (a semi-permanent downtown village). I am integrally involved in these actions.
I have posted about Occupy and #OPDX (Occupy Portland) many times on this very list. I know infinitely more about Occupy than you do, would be my working assumption (using "infinitely" in its hyperbolic sense i.e. I'm using hyperbole).
As one of Occupy's many "leaders" I freely admit that the rhetoric of "1% versus 99%" is shorthand, not some scientific thesis. I think it was brilliant and fairly effective, but as a slogan only. Kind of like Haim's "Education Mafia" in that sense.
Or consider the atheist / humanist movement and its need for PR. "Good without God" is their bumper sticker these days. PR is important. People rally around slogans and mantras, I don't deny it. I'm not being cynical, just saying what's so. Advertising is important. Art moves us.
> Since Reagan, there is less and less of what could be called social > democracy in the US, and less and less of what I call capital > democracy or entrepreneurial democracy in the US. > >
It's not just your "conservatives" that are exclusively behind that trend I would say. In the Clinton years the stock market and real estate bubbles were marketed to the "get rich quick" greedy middle classes. They packed hotel ballrooms to learn about flipping houses with "no money down". Banks were complicit in this scheming and dreaming but not exclusively. This was a "mom & pop" movement.
The "dot com bombers" made a lot of spurious claims for their vaporware businesses, attracted venture capital, and squandered it on themselves. Many of these were young "liberal" type people. Those who bought the dot com stocks were likewise often yuppies, happy to read the Village Voice and vote democratic.
The Clinton Era was a hay day for fiscal irresponsibility, while political TV became a circus. The office of president lost just about all of its gravitas under Clinton, with the office of president even further degrading under Bush, when he made fun of himself looking for WMDs and not finding them, ridiculing the bankruptcy of the USA's indefensible "foreign policy".
You can blame presidents if you like, but I tend to think the American people bear some responsibility for recent war crimes. Their hypocrisy about drugs and drug use is laying waste to the indigenous lifestyles of so many around the world even now. Their puritanical religious fanaticism is a deep ugliness in their culture.
What business have the Americans using herbicides and flame throwers against opium crops in Afghanistan? Who invited them to be judge and jury around the world?
Clinton's pals (people like Sandy Berger) bombed the Chinese embassy in Belgrade, used cluster bombs over that city. They used a cruise missile against a veterinary pharmaceuticals plant in the Sudan (and settled behind the scenes after the public stopped watching).
I think it all started going to hell after Eisenhower, when the decision was made to keep priming the prime contractors irrigation system and make military buildup the name of the game. That's when the USA made a wrong turn and started to sell out. Eisenhower warned against doing that, but went unheeded.
If you think Occupy is about making liberal Democrats seem like heros and conservative Republicans the demons, think again.
"No One for President" was the popular sign.
The US flag was never accepted as a symbol of Occupy Portland (I was at the meetings and know what I'm talking about). This was not a nationalist movement. It's roots were in Arab Spring.
> On this latter type of democracy being destroyed by some of those in > the top 1%: Because the banks are less and less making capital > available via business loans to people not already rich to become > practicing capitalists - that is, to become business owners, the > percentage of the US population that own a business has been cut in > half since Reagan in the early 1980s began this destruction of capital > democracy or entrepreneurial democracy in the US. > >
Yeah, looks like those hypocrite USAers are probably incompetent to practice true democratic capitalism or whatever they wanna call it. Not surprising. This isn't Sweden after all and never will be.
Ironic they use the rhetoric of "spreading democracy" when they're so bad at it themselves.
I blame their weak STEM education, their weak math teachers. They're not genetically stupid, just their culture makes them that way. Oh well, nice experiment. Seems about over though eh? Or do you think there's still hope?