OCCUPY REBORN? The Nation Conducts Post-Mortem on Dangerous Progressive Protesters
The Nation magazine is conducting a post-mortem on Occupy and everyone should learn from its conclusions as the they will likely indicate the next steps of the radical, dangerous, far-left progressive movement. Organizers Leah Hunt-Hendrix and Max Berger provide the analysis.
Nonprofit Quarterly reports:
Their suggestions for a “credible revolutionary strategy has three parts: alternative institutions that create examples of the kind of society we want to live in; social movements that mobilize popular resistance by opposing the corrupt institutions currently in power; and independent political organizations that enshrine progressive victories in law.”
For alternative institutions, they call for democratic control of banks, worker and community “say” in corporate operations, and community control of land. They call for “shifting the endowments of foundations and universities away from investment in fossil fuels and private prisons and into a renewable economy owned and operated by communities, with members accountable to each other and to future generations.”
For social movements, they argue against organizing campaigns that have “closed, hierarchical structures” (oddly pointing to “unions that can’t go on strike” as an example, rather than some of the very hierarchical organizing networks that have been powerful recently, such as ACORN) and “horizontal mobilizations that fall apart quickly and don’t have a coherent strategy” (here, they point to Occupy as the example). But the model they suggest is to learn from the resistance movements linked to the Arab Spring and the “color revolutions” of Eastern Europe, which they say “succeeded in overthrowing authoritarian regimes by combining structure and mobilization in a hybrid model that could escalate militantly and had a plan to win.” They explain that the lack of an organization that could take power after the successful mobilization against the Middle East dictators is what led these successful movements to lose the revolution.
For that “independent political formation with a lasting base that can take power and win reforms,” Hunt-Hendrix and Berger point to the model of the Working Families Party in New York, which they see as an entity “to build…power through electoral and issue organizing do the dirty work of negotiating with other political forces.” Although frequently working with the Democratic Party, the WFP exists outside of it, running candidates inside and out, similar to how the Tea Party activists gained influence within the Republican Party.
One of the reasons Occupy didn’t survive was because it was organized by interests that merely wanted to use it as a vehicle for their own interests. It was highly scripted. See this:
As it is said about the radical Islamists in the Middle East, we should take these far-left progressives at their word about what they plan to do to America, our economy and our very way of life.