Jay Smooth on Occupy Wall Street and co-opting the movement
If you’ve never been aware of Jay Smooth and his IllDoctrine observations, analysis and insights you have missed out. His take on situations are almost always on point. This time is no different. Jay speaks on Occupy Wall Street and how some people aren’t “getting it”. Of this I can relate as in these previous weeks I’ve had to try to speak to the same extent to others in response to “What is this Occupy Wall Street thing about?” Jay is right that if you don’t get it then it’s probably not meant for you to get.
The point I want to bring up is the last line he touched on.
And I hope the movement is sharp enough to survive this next stage of the game where they realize they can’t shut us down so they start trying to co-opt us instead and make us a part of the game.
This is going to start happening especially if the occupation lasts deeper into the election season. You better believe that politicians, strategists, business and special interests are looking for ways to leverage the Occupy Wall Street movement to their advantage.
At the same time though, there are political interests that believe in what the movement is trying to accomplish and have waited for like-minded individuals in mass to raise their heads. Some of these people, groups and politicians may be genuinely interested in supporting or getting involved with Occupy Wall Street and it’s message. The problem will be how to identify those genuinely interested in helping and representing those ideals and those who just want to use it for the number of people they might gain access to.
I was recently at a political organization meeting and the topic came up to some degree. It seems that the older more established politicians and those sitting in elected seats are opposed to getting involved whereas the younger members of the organization want to reach out and be apart of Occupy Wall Street. They seemed to identify with the movement and believe that they are both fighting for a similar goal. This differing opinions is causing a huge debate within the organization and has become a big issue.
The question one of the young members asked me was how can they approach Occupy Wall Street, support and get involved being that they are a part of an established political party that it seems the movement might be opposed to. It wasn’t the first time I’ve had to answer that question. My answer has always been the same.
I may be wrong, and if anyone associated with the inner circles of the different working groups, general assemblies, supporters or participants disagrees please say so, but I think the best way is honesty. Go there with all cards on the table. Let people know up front who you are and who you are affiliated with and let them know you would like to be involved. This is going to be necessary for politicians as well. Deception and subversion never wins over anyone. Honesty and a genuine interest in helping, not taking over or co-opting, will go further than trying to work an angle to get an in. This is the people’s movement not one of your organization, campaign, party or company. It is the way of Capitalism and targeted marketing to say “Hey there’s a group of people receptive to my product how could I possibly use this to my advantage?” I think that’s the wrong mindset. This is a movement not set to help one individual’s interest but the people, country and future as a whole. That must be respected or you are no better than those being rallied against, just perhaps in an embryonic state. Not to romanticize the ideal but my advice would be that if you aren’t authentic in your interest in working towards the types of reforms they are interested in it’s probably not for you.
Well, you wouldn’t.