The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Public opinion is irrelevant

When Occupy started, there were polls that showed the public supported it.  Later, polls showed that support had dropped and a majority no longer supported Occupy.  In the first case progressives were pleased, in the second upset.

I didn’t care either time.  Repeat after me:

Public opinion does not matter.

It is irrelevant.  A large majority of the population wanted a public option added to the healthcare bill.  A small majority wanted single payor.  Calls against TARP were running 100:1 to 1200:1 against.  There is no public option, there is no single payer, and TARP passed.

In Europe every government other than Iceland has been sure to never allow a referendum on austerity.  Members of the Euro-zone like Spain and Greece and Italy have not had referendums on whether to leave the Euro.  They have had elections in some cases, but both major parties are FOR austerity (it’s not clear that citizens entirely understand this, watching Spaniards talking about how they had voted against austerity in the recent election was pathetic.  They elected a government which will go even more hardcore on austerity.)

Most countries in the developed world do not have functioning democracies in any meaningful sense.  You can vote for party A, B, or C, but they will all do substantially the same things, differing only in how fast they do them and the degree of gratuitous cruelty they engage in.

Your opinion does not matter.  Politicians are almost entirely in the thrall of a neo-liberal ideology, and are almost entirely the bought and paid servants of the very rich.  If a politician does what the oligarchy wants, he or she will be taken care of, even if thrown out of office.  If they don’t, money and influence will be used against them, and once out of office they will be on their own.

Politicians do not work for you.  Neither, just to be clear, do the police.  Nothing is more pathetic than watching folks at Occupy who seem to genuinely believe the cops are on their side.

Our elites will do what they will do regardless of what public opinion is.

What matters is not “opinion”, but action.  So with regards to Occupy, all I cared about is how many people were being radicalized—whether a cadre was being formed; and how much of the population supported them in real terms.  People who would donate goods, would donate money, would spread the message actively, would go down during the day.

What I care about in general, is how many people are willing to impose costs on the oligarchy.  These can be financial costs (as when French protestors occupied a refinery), or they can be personal costs, such as heckling politicians and the rich, slashing the tires of their cars (the Argentines did that, by the way) or, if rioting, rioting where they live and work.

Understand, the true rich live in the bubble.  They fly on private jets, they travel by helicopter, if they stay in hotels they cost tens of thousands of dollars a night and have private entrances, check-ins, elevators and so on that you as a peon never see or use unless you are part of their direct servant class.  Being in the bubble means never having to deal with a human being who isn’t directly financially dependent.  These people do not care what you ‘think’, they only care if you can damage their interests.

Politicians live less in the bubble.  You can reach them, and let them know what you think.  Loudly and insistently.  At their homes.  Their restaurants.  Their fund raisers.  Everywhere they go.  Don’t “occupy Wall Street”.  Occupy Bloomberg.  Go everywhere he goes, and make his life living hell.  That’s a cost to him.

Until politicians fear you more than they fear the rich and covet the favors and money of the rich, they will continue to serve the rich first.  Their salaries are not that important to them, they do not work for you, and they don’t fear you enough.

But that won’t change because of “opinion”.  Opinions don’t matter in aristocracies or oligarchies, and that’s what we are creating, what we’re heading towards.  What matters isn’t what the public thinks, what matters is what the public does which has a tangible, real, cost to politicians or their masters.

So I no longer care about polls in almost all cases.  They don’t matter.  Likewise most elections: elect whoever you want, the policies will remain the same except on the margins as long as the politicians don’t work for you, but for the rich.

Your “opinion” is irrelevant.  The powerful do not care what you think.


What’s happening in Europe is what matters: rules of the financial rich


The blindingly obvious about the proposed fiscal union in Europe


  1. Celsius 233

    Hope is an idiot living in lala land; at least when applied to the present political/geo-political (?) situation in the U.S.
    I agree 100% about opinion polls as well, Ian.
    The news/views from 1/2 way around the world is exhilarating/illuminating and frightening/disturbing, coming as it does, from sources outside of the MSM Americana and it’s handmaidens.
    I now view all governments as inherently evil; and all politicians as crooks/con-men.
    There is no one left to follow and there are no leaders…

  2. someofparts

    So if the radicalized cadres you hope for begin to form, will they be invisible at first? Will be be able to tell that they are there and, if so, how?

    Also, would you consider Anonymous a variety of radical cadre?

  3. beowulf

    “What matters isn’t what the public thinks, what matters is what the public does which has a tangible, real, cost to politicians or their masters.”

    Excellent point Ian. More people should study game theory, Bruce Bueno de Mesquita has written a couple of good books on the topic.

  4. zot23

    I agree, but you are jumping to the endgame Ian. It’ll arrive, but in it’s own sweet time.

    IMHO politics and power is like a poker match. It’s true that to arrive at the table, look at the chips and the game being played, the logical point to arrive at is: one of these people is going home with all of the others’ chips. That’s the endgame. Still, it would be foolish to surmise that therefore you should go all in on your first hand to get it over with and know the winner. The smart player will ante up, bid, call, raise, bluff, fold, angle for them to play to his strength and obscure weakness. When the time is right and you know their play (and how yours beats it), you knock the legs out from under them and then lean on them nice and even the rest of the game.

    OWS is doing what it needs to do to keep playing, to make the next ante. There were 500 people to start, then 2,000, now 10,000 at times (just in NYC, globally who knows?) The elites have reacted very predictably with force and cruelty (as expected), but the OWS numbers swell each time this happens. So who is really building chips here, who’s winning the hands? Sure, it might end with 2-3 million people before the decisive hand is played, but that’s not today, not now. They remain non-violent in the face of violence, they gain public opinion and mind share, and this helps increase the number of folks willing to get off their asses and get out in the streets. Sooner or later, the cops and the pepper spray and the tear gas and (god knows what else) will be too much and there will be open violence, but that’s not the play today, it’s not the cards protesters are holding yet.

    Patience, this is going to go on for years and get massively ugly. Not looking forward to the choices ahead (and raising my kids in this environment), but again this is the hand we’ve been dealt. The protesters are getting their education in the streets right now, it’s going to take time to sink in and change the way people act and think.

    They should keep doing what they are doing IMHO and branch out into the areas you suggest (following public figureheads of the elites, causing economic pain.) See what is effective and what is not, and more importantly the reaction to each thing you do. I know you are in agreement with this, it just seems you are impatient with it not happening here, now, today. Patience and pressure my friend, this game is in motion.

  5. Ian Welsh

    Most people don’t operate in terms of game theory. But we have trained our elites to do so. It’s like studies that find the only “rational economic actors” (people who act according to the theory) are economists.

  6. Nostradamus, Jr.

    “…KCAL’s chopper pilot just said he’s under an agreement with LAPD not to give tactical details, but called the staging activity at Dodger Stadium the largest LAPD mobilization he has ever seen.”

  7. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Statement from Paul Weber, president of the Police Protective League, via email.

    “Amid ever-changing political winds, Los Angeles Police Officers have adhered to the highest standards of law enforcement in dealing with the Occupy L.A. protestors over the past two months. Acting on the commands of the civilian leadership in Los Angeles, the LAPD cleared the Occupy L.A. camp. While there is a place for civil protest, the unsanitary and dangerous conditions of the Occupy L.A. encampment required that the encampment be disbanded. The LAPD officers’ training and experience have served them well in dealing with a wide range of individuals with different agendas.

    We commend the officers for effectively and efficiently ending Occupy L.A. at City Hall with minimum use of force. ”

    Just keep repeating, “Minimum use of force.”

  8. Lisa Simeone

    Perhaps this is a sign of radicalization that Ian is wishing for:

    Anonymous and Team Poison start Op Robin Hood
    Steal from the banks, give to the 99 per cent
    By Dave Neal
    Mon Nov 28 2011, 14:52

    HACKERS Team Poison have joined forces with Anonymous to launch Operation Robin Hood, an assault on banks that should see funds channeled back to the disenfranchised 99 per cent.
    “We have watched our brothers and sisters being refused their hard earned money by the banks on top of being beaten and brutalized by officers during peaceful demonstrations. Congratulations banks, you have gotten our attention,” says a message jointly signed by Team Poison and Anonymous.
    “Banks have stolen millions from [their] customers as well as lacked the security to protect them. We give you Operation Robin Hood.”
    Operation Robin Hood is launched in support of those protesters at the Occupy sit-ins across the globe and anyone that has suffered at the hands of the banks. The two parties said that they will take money from credit cards and give it to those who have been cheated by the banks.
    “Operation Robin Hood is going to return the money to those who have been cheated by our system and most importantly to those hurt by our banks. Operation Robin Hood will take credit cards and donate to the 99 [per cent] as well as various charities around the globe. The banks will be forced to reimburse the people [their] money back,” their announcement says.
    “We are going to take what belongs to us. The Banks have thrown people out on the streets with corrupted actions. When the poor steals, it’s considered violence, but when the banks steal from us, it’s called business.”

  9. Lisa Simeone

    Sorry, I should’ve used Blockquote. My italics didn’t work.

  10. Ian Welsh

    Anonymous is currently the only enforcement class the left has.

  11. Lisa Simeone

    Anonymous is currently the only enforcement class the left has.

    I know. And it kills me that I can’t participate. I am incompetent at technology. I’m lucky I can turn on my computer and work the microwave.

  12. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Research firm Ipsos Mendelsohn recently finished a two-month project on the medium-to-upper crust and found that people making at least $100,000 are feeling better about the economy. But the super rich are really feeling better. The Washington, D.C.-based Economic Policy Institute (EPI) found that although household wealth declined by 16% for the richest fifth of Americans and 25% for the rest of the country from 2007 to 2009, in 2009 the wealthiest 1% of U.S. households had net worth that was 225 times greater than the typical median household’s net worth.

  13. Tom Hickey

    Good analysis, Ian.

    Occupy needs to go through the requisite experience to get there. This will take time, and it is still very early in the game. This is a ten to twenty year project of global transformation, and it is likely to get pretty ugly.

    The 1% are not going to go away quietly. If they had any brains, they would be using co-optation. But instead they seem to be digging in and doubling down.

  14. Nostradamus, Jr.

    “Let them eat waffles!”

  15. Tony Wikrent

    Ian is right, and so is Zot23. But, I would remind Zot23 history is NOT an inanimate force. People can and do influence the flow of events that later is called history.

    I feel the same frustration Ian does. I have wondered for over 30 years when people would finally begin to resist the rising bankster and corporatist oligarchies. In the U.S., we are still years (perhaps only months?) from the type of widespread civil actions we saw in Egypt. But such actions are inevitable, because of the underlying dynamic of trying to force a real economy that can only grow arithmetically to pay debt service to a financial system that is growing geometrically. (The latest report from the Bank for International Settlements is that financial derivatives markets increased a record $107 trillion in the first half of this year.) This problem is as old as written human history. See Michael Hudson’s “The Lost Tradition of Biblical Debt Cancellations.”

    What is especially frustrating is that so many on our side do not yet see the need to be “innocent as doves and sly as foxes.” Last week I initiated a discussion on intelligence (as in espionage), and unfortunately used the term “real politik” which some people reacted against, so they missed the point. Perhaps I can get at it this way: Last week, George Bush and Tony Blair were charged with war crimes by the War Crimes Tribunal in Malaysia. Now, let me ask: do you really think that if the time comes to actually arrest George Bush, or Dick Cheney, or David Addington, they they and similar criminals will meekly submit to the long arm of the law?

    Are you willing to let Dick Cheney or George Bush, freshly indicted for war crimes, fly unmolested to Paraguay? You’re not willing to have their aircraft shot down? Good for you for eschewing organized state violence. But, how do you try to stop them? Just let them live out their lives in exile? Or are you willing to call the tower and tell air traffic controllers not to give clearance to takeoff? Or would you be willing to go this far: launch a covert op a few days ahead of time to put something in the jet fuel and render it unfit for use? What if the aircraft can accelerate to just below lift speed, but can’t lift off, and crashes past the end of the runway? And if they don’t, if they fly to Paraguay or where ever, do you send a special ops team to snatch them? Maybe Marine snipers? Or a Predator drone? Or… WHAT? What would you do to ensure justice is served?

    Do these questions make you uncomfortable? Well, Bush stands formally accused of war crimes; many on the left have been making the charge for years. Were they just being hyperbolic in their accusations? Was it just propaganda? Or bombast? Or do they really, seriously mean that Bush and Cheney have authorized war crimes and must be held accountable?

    Who even controls the long arm of the law right now? There have been a number of incidents at Occupy of vehicles running down protesters. Were I Prez, I would have U.S. marshals swarming all over the drivers, their homes, their work places, their friends, to send as strong a message as possible that such violent actions will not be tolerated. Instead, Obama’s and Holder’s silence sends the significant signal that the wrong-wing crazies can continue to push the envelope of minor violence against the left. In the absence of such prophylactic protection from the administration, the left should be protesting at the drivers’ homes and work placse to impose some,/em> cost on the perpetrators. Similarly, the wrong-wing editor of the Weekly Standard who attempted to incite Occupiers to violence at the Air and Space Museum a few weeks ago. Without such actions, without such costs being imposed, there is only one message the wrong-wing gets – and it makes their thugs grin.

    What must happen is the creation of a tough cadre of people who do not flinch from asking – and answering – such questions. Fine, don’t call it real politik. Call it whatever you want. But you better realize we’re past the point of rhetorical exercises in venting steam. They have the NSA. They have the military. They control the police. They are ready for the denouement of class warfare. Are you?

  16. Lisa Simeone

    Similarly, the wrong-wing editor of the Weekly Standard who attempted to incite Occupiers to violence at the Air and Space Museum a few weeks ago.

    Minor correction: he wrote for American Prospect, not the Weekly Standard. His name is Patrick Howley.

  17. Nostradamus, Jr.

    “The breakdown is 290 booked for failure to disperse, one for battery on a police officer and one for interfering with an officer, the L.A. Times reports. Bail for most was expected to be $5,000. Mayor Villaraigosa and Chief Beck have just held a presser where they effusively praised the efficiency, professionalism and calm of the 1,400 police who were on the scene, but some protesters are reporting scattered violent incidents with cops away from the cameras at City Hall.”

    1,400 ÷ 290 = 4.8 cops for every passive, non-violent protester. Sounds more like ‘shock and awe’ than “calm professionalism”. $5k bail for a camping misdemeanor also seems like it’s intended to send a message.

  18. @Lisa Simeone: Yikes, if Anonymous is serious about that credit-card action, well, let’s just say that they’ll be facing the mother of all pushbacks from the 1%. I’d be grateful for not being able to jump in on that action, if I were you! (I know, how very un-revolutionary of me. 🙂 )

    I agree with Ian and the prevailing sentiments expressed here, with minor modification: Public opinion is irrelevant to the PTB (with the further caveat, of course, that opinion-gathering is a suspect enterprise in any case.) Many of us do find some comfort in perceiving popularity (solidarity) in the ideals of the revolution, FWIW.

    Arthur Silber has posted an excellent essay regarding our “beloved” Constitution and its little-discussed intent, by moneyed elites, to suppress a true democracy in our nascent revolutionary country (which I also posted on – not to blog-whore or anything. :))

    Regarding the actions that may be taken against the greedheads, I posted this piece, quite coincidentally, on Day 1 of #OWS, addressing a potential social response: Shunning The Money Changers.

  19. Does anyone know what the hell that poker analogy means other than that Zot23 is a bore to play poker with?

    Ian’s point is that swaying public image, worrying about packaging you message to convince others to agree with you is meaningless. Your thoughts, beliefs, opinions and so on are irrelevant to elites. What matters are your actions, and whether those actions are a threat (to be neutralized), neutral (to be exploited), or positive (to be commodified) to their interests of wealth and status. That is true now, in the mid game, and in the end game, and every phase of the game that never ends you can define

  20. madisolation

    “Politicians live in less of a bubble. You can reach them.”
    That, to me, is the essence of this article. Politicians have to pretend to represent the people at times. They have to campaign. They also go out among the “unwashed” at times, to eat, etc.
    To top it off, the moneyed elite more than likely feel no loyalty towards the politicians. They won’t step in to defend them or help them if they are exposed. Politicians are the weak point, in my opinion.

  21. Iain

    re: governments and austerity. the uk elected a government that had pledged austerity. equally ireland chose a government that had made clear its budgetary intentions.

  22. Towner

    “Anonymous is currently the only enforcement class the left has.”

    I’m not so sure, but I get your sentiment, there isn’t much. However, the West Coast occupies are radicalizing. And they are working locally and regionally and seem to be quite focused on action, whereas OWS strategy still seems mostly publicity driven. That’s still not necessarily a negative at this point.

    I was discussing occupy Austin and the idea of perhaps shutting down I 35 during rush hour, as it is a major NAFTA trade route. But for one, there’s simply not nearly enough bodies in a place like that. And they’re still relatively “main stream” in there thinking; boycotts and protests etc. But still, all over the country occupy has been taking various limited, but still very direct actions like defending foreclosures. That doesn’t strike at critical commercial global choke points but it’s still pretty radical all things considered.

    It will be interesting to see how successful the West Coast port blockades are. I was incredibly skeptical about the Nov. Oakland general strike, given that it was called by Occupy with very little time to coordinate. Turns out the unions were already on board. So it seems pretty clear now that there’s a lot more behind the scenes networking between unions, community groups and occupiers than what we see and read online. The longshoremen are central here. And they too count, I think, as an enforcement class.

    “As of November 27, 2011, the Occupy movement in every major West Coast port city: Occupy LA, Occupy San Diego, Occupy Portland, Occupy Tacoma, Occupy Seattle have joined Occupy Oakland in calling for and organizing a coordinated West Coast Port Blockade and Shutdown on December 12, 2011. Other West Coast Occupies, including Occupy Anchorage and Vancouver, Canada are planning to join the economic blockade and disruption of the 1% on that date, according to organizers.”

    They are certainly not paying attention to public opinion. And thankfully, not listing to liberals either.

  23. Lisa Simeone

    Protestors held incommunicado in LA jails. Nice work, Herr Villaraigosa. No lawyers, no rights. Does anyone in the mainstream media give a shit? If this were happening in Egypt, Syria, Bahrain, etc., you’d hear a great hue and cry from our esteemed journalists in the USA. This is from Answer, but it’s confirmed by an LA Times blog, in case anyone gets freaked out by the scary socialist tendencies of Answer (I’m thinking of Cogbloggers):

    Not only were hundreds of people arrested in the police raid in Los Angeles last night but the LAPD and Mayor, having socked each arrested person with a $5,000 bail, are now refusing to release them from jail and are refusing to allow them to meet with their attorneys.
    National Lawyers Guild board member, Carol Sobel, condemned the action of the LAPD. “The Los Angeles Police Department is deliberately refusing to release anyone arrested in the Occupy raids with a notice to appear. The City is holding them in jail on $5,000 bail until they can be arraigned by a judge, which can take up to 48 hours. This punishes people for exercising their First Amendment rights.”
    Sobel continued: “California law is clear. Penal Code §853.6 is mandatory in requiring that anyone charged with a misdemeanor shall be released with a written notice to appear.”

    Eyewitness report from attorney Ian Thompson
    Ian Thompson is an attorney and the ANSWER Los Angeles coordinator. He is the attorney for arrested activists Mike Prysner and Doug Kauffman.
    “This afternoon, after finding out where Occupy LA protesters were being held following last night’s assault and eviction of peaceful demonstrators carried out by the LAPD, I went down to check on the status of my clients and others who were arrested.
    “When I arrived, the doors were closed and a line had formed outside. I saw a notice which read, ‘Front lobby closed until further notice.’
    “I knocked on the door to talk to someone. An LAPD officer came out. I told him I was an attorney for two of the protesters being held inside. ‘We are closed,’ he said. ‘You cannot visit your clients or anyone.’ He informed me I could not post bail or talk to anyone there. ‘Call my watch commander,’ he added.
    “I then called the watch commander with the same request. ‘You cannot see your clients,’ he told me. ‘Call back in several hours.’
    “Hundreds of people are being held inside this jail without access to legal counsel. As of now they are being held on $5,000 bail until they can be arraigned which can take up to 48 hours. Apparently the LAPD and Mayor Villaraigosa are refusing to allow people to post the bail even if they can.
    “This is unconscionable and a violation of civil rights for my clients and all people held inside,” Thompson stated.
    In the press statement calling for the release of the arrested people, the National Lawyers Guild chapter in Los Angeles said, “New York City was successfully sued in 2004 when they tried the same tactic against individuals involved in protesting at the Republican National Convention.”
    Send a letter to the Los Angeles mayor and the chief of police demanding that those arrested at the Occupy LA raid be released immediately.

  24. Ian Welsh

    The Brits did not give the conservatives a majority, and the Lib Dems were not promising austerity. In Ireland, they swept out an austerity party and put in an austerity party.


  25. wjbill49

    I try to reduce my patronage of large corporations but it is difficult. Have not shopped at Wal-Mart for a long long time and I somewhat kid myself Target is a small step up from them. I try to patronize local as much as possible and buy things when I can from B corporations. I wish there was a movement or clearinghouse that could advise on alternatives to the status quo when making purchases. Maybe there is but I do not know of it.

  26. Similarly, the wrong-wing editor of the Weekly Standard who attempted to incite Occupiers to violence at the Air and Space Museum a few weeks ago.

    Minor correction: he wrote for American Prospect, not the Weekly Standard. His name is Patrick Howley.

    Actually he’s with The American Spectator.

  27. Lisa Simeone

    Andy Lewis,

    Eeek! So sorry. You’re right — American Prospect is a liberal mag; American Spectator a conservative one. Thank you.

  28. someofparts

    I wonder what would come of hooking local Occupies with local union branches? In the South I despair because the Obama presidency has de-radicalized the powerhouse black community here. But, putting that aside, because it’s a done deal and pointless to fuss over, what if the local Occupies hooked up with the local SEIU branches and shut down all the big hotels in this town at some crucial time?

    The thing that keeps giving me pause though, is the thought of my neighbors in this town. This is a very very right wing place. Deeply so. When I imagine doing anything effective like the strike I imagined above, the idea is quickly followed by the sense that the population in this town would be against the folks going on strike and strongly in support of our bankster overlords.

    For that matter, if I imagine and alliance between the local Occupy folks and the SEIU, I would expect a natural alliance between white liberals and hispanics with the black population here positioned vehemently against it all because liberal white and hispanics are two groups the blacks of this town see as their prime enemies.

    Neutering the black resistance with a neo-liberal black president was a brilliant move on the part of our enemies. Credit where credit is due.

  29. tom allen

    Exactly, you morons. Until you guys and girls have the guts to shove a pie or two in my face, you’ll never win. And neither will I. 😛

  30. alyosha

    Public opinion is indeed irrelevant to the elites in terms of providing any input into their course of action, but it is an important indicator of what the masses think, and therefore important enough to be manipulated to control the masses.

    Because the public is really the only leverage OWS has. Until OWS can figure out how to get the public on their side in large enough numbers, OWS is “just” a training ground for revolutionaries. That’s important but not sufficient by itself. You have to have enough of a sympathetic public to have any chance of undermining the elites. And so, controlling public opinion via typical mainstream reporting, with the resulting negative opinion polls are what the elites are doing to contain OWS.

  31. Celsius 233

    alyosha PERMALINK
    December 2, 2011

    And so, controlling public opinion via typical mainstream reporting, with the resulting negative opinion polls are what the elites are doing to contain OWS.
    That sounds about right.
    But Americans, in general, are far behind the curve when it comes to actually seeing things as they are.
    Too gullible; too indoctrinated by the democracy shtick and probably some-what shell shocked.
    Keeping one’s opponent off balance is a proven strategy because it works.
    Whomever came up with OWS hasn’t quite got it yet.
    I don’t think there’s much time left to get it right; now or it just gets harder and harder which translates to dangerous.

  32. tom allen

    LOL. Scaredy-cat shit-wad, pissing in your pants. If you haven’t ruined your own career at least twice before you’re a middle-aged white dude, and then aren’t willing to toss it all away again just on principle, then what the fuck good are you? Ass. For once Kipling was right. 😛

    How many times does Ian have to provoke you? How many times do I have to preaching this schtick from behind the internet? meh, we’ll keep on doing it till you kids learn. and i promise you, at the end, there will be pie. lemon meringue, and this bit here tastes like chocolate silk. ooh, could i have some vanilla ice cream too, with a cherry on top? and Cool Hh-whip? 🙂

  33. Celsius 233

    ^ And just who the fuck are you?

  34. Why he’s the rootinest, tootintest, toughest guy the Internet has ever known. Of course, Confucius say, Internet tough guy equal real life yellabelly.

  35. Celsius 233

    Andy lewis PERMALINK
    December 4, 2011
    Why he’s the rootinest, tootintest, toughest guy the Internet has ever known. Of course, Confucius say, Internet tough guy equal real life yellabelly.
    Well, that’s a relief; he had me shaking in my sandals. His rudeness is noteworthy.
    I figured Ian would boot his ass out of here; he’s the one riding shotgun on this stage…

  36. Lex

    Team Poison is probably the seriously scary portion of that combined operation against banks/credit card companies. A good friend who’s in charge of IT security at a major, US university recently told me that “a real hacker” group was planning just such an action.

    I’m firmly with Ian on where the cops stand in the broad equation. The sentiment i read on the internet and see from Occupy protests where people try and convince the police that they’re a part of the 99% makes me laugh; i can only assume it’s held and put forward by people with very little real world experience of American police. Eventually, the protests might turn a few cops and it’s true that they’re basically middle-class union workers … but most of them associate themselves with power because they want to.

    I keep finding myself wondering why these protests aren’t occupying the offices of politicians from both sides of the aisle. Every Rep and Senator has an office in his/her home district. I’m not criticizing because it’s not like i’m occupying anything. I’m just wondering, given that the financial elites get away with what they do because the politicians work directly for them, why a major tactic of the movement wouldn’t be to go after the politicians?

  37. I’m just wondering, given that the financial elites get away with what they do because the politicians work directly for them, why a major tactic of the movement wouldn’t be to go after the politicians?

    Because politicians are expendable, ever in rotation. There’s a queue of them waiting to be bought out. The source of the money is the only fixed target.

  38. So how does this fit with blaming the voters (and non-voters), again?

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