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99%: OCCUPY

What is this? I think of “99%: OCCUPY” as a “Web essay,” always in process, its pages/subtopics being revised whenever I want to restate or add material, as I explore and investigate the matter of why I support, and  IMHOpinion we all should support, this movement on behalf of 99% of Americans.

When does the greed stop?”  –  Ted Kennedy

You Are Entering A Wall St-Free Zone

Bar One, Bar All

Occupy Your Life  / The Urgent Need for a Resistance:

This is it.  If not now, never—for we might never have another chance.

Let’s be clear about what now requires thought and action.  This is about whether we will care for our people, and whether we can keep our democracy.

At this moment in America (and not ignoring the rest of the world) hundreds of millions of persons are under assault by a few.  This is about abusive power, huge and unrestrained, derived from wealth, and exercised by certain persons with the purpose of accumulating more wealth, and more power, in ways that injure others.  The 99% of Americans who are being abused must act together to end the abuse, to take back our lives by creating a healthy, sane lifestyle in America, and by protecting our democracy from a new Ignobility.

We must create a Movement of resistance and change, larger than that of the 1960s, featuring a much broader array of actions, large and small.

Who are these “1%”, these Few who abuse so many?  The Living Dead

As Jesus is reported to have said, we must “let the dead bury the dead.”  These Living Dead arepersons who are practicing what Thoreau called “gross materialism,” the accumulation of wealth at the expense of soul.  The accumulation of power at the expense of souls.  The valuing of material wealth above truth, compassion, goodness, beauty. We must leave them behind in their luxurious cemeteries.

“For what shall it profit a man, if he gain the world but lose his soul?”

These persons against whom we struggle, whom I join in calling “the 1%” (or even fewer–perhaps 1/10 of 1%), are the Wealthy/Powerful, who have accumulated—and their retainers who are striving to accumulate—unimaginable, and obscenely disproportionate, wealth, which is the basis of their power, and who are using that wealth/power to increase their domination, insulation, and isolation – and to nullify Constitutional inhibitions against rule by an hereditary aristocracy.  They believe profoundly in their own superiority, righteousness, and merit; and they will lie to themselves and anyone else in order to maintain their self-delusion and position.  When they feel deeply threatened, there are individuals among them who will break any law and do whatever it takes to defend themselves, including murder.

The order of difficulty

I was active enough in the Civil Rights Movement and the Mobilization against the war in Vietnam to see some things and learn some things.   I think that both of those acts of resistance saved and improved many lives—especially the Civil Rights movement (the Mobe was unable to prevent the crimes against humanity that were perpetrated by the Nixon/Kissinger administration).

But, frankly, I’m not so sure that we can overcome, this time.  The Wealthy could lose the Civil Rights battle and keep their wealth intact.  They could withdraw from Vietnam and keep their wealth intact (even increase it through vast subsequent spending on the military).  Just think, money/power is all they wanted, and now money/power is all they’ve got, and now we propose to take away their Wealth—and their Power.  And in the meantime they have vastly increased both.

So far (and thank goodness it is still early), furthermore, unlike the 60s, institutional religions in America have not joined this effort in defense of the poor, and of our democracy, against exploitation and subversion by the 1%.  Indeed, many institutionally conservative sects, and socially conservative sects, have allied themselves with the politicians whose primary political purpose is to serve the interests of the 1%.

Unions such as the United Auto Workers who were active in the Civil Rights Movement have been severely weakened, as a major tactic of the 1%, and continue to come under assault (eg postal workers, teachers and other public employees, service workers).

The courts have been significantly loaded by the Republicans with judges and other officers who share the views of the 1%; and the US Supreme Court, especially, has been stocked with Republican appointees who have actively sought to serve the interests of their masters, the 1%, lying to Congress, compromising their impartiality through political activity, and participating in the theft of the Presidency in 2000.  The actions of the Republican majority in Citizens United v. FEC (2010) directly threaten our democracy by making it possible for the 1% to buy election results—and only the 1% have sufficient wealth to do so.

The resistance movements that we associate with Ghandi and King could appeal to the sense of morality and justice that were shared by the oppressors and dominant group of the population, and were enshrined in British and American Constitutional law.  However, Republicans on the US Supreme Court have undermined our  Constitutional guarantees, and the sense of morality and justice that is shared by the 1% (with a few exceptions) is based on self-centeredness rather than empathy, compassion, and objective, disinterested reasoning.

[more to come, eg:

Notes on psychopathology, Libertarianism, Objectivism, anarchy, Republican party, racism, money v. value, wealth and power inequality, soul, sane lifestyle, etc]

What do I Want?  I want what large majorities of Americans want:

Americans want what people everywhere want:  adequate food and water, shelter, good health, love and care, self-expression, creation, pleasure, supportive and orderly community, education, fairness and justice, good governance, safety and security.  What part of that is too much to ask for?

Immediately and more specifically, in order to help provide what Americans and humans everywhere need, I want:

Big Money out of politics…

and a corresponding increase in citizen empowerment over their lives.

In 2012 a massive voter turnout, and then a procedure for voting that maximizes voter participation

and guarantees an accurate count of the vote.

Thoroughly enforced, universal, progressive taxation.

Independent, progressive members of government, who consider themselves to be public servants.

Constitutional recognition that corporations are not persons and money is not speech.

A US Supreme Court that is not corrupted by Big Money.

Safe, comfortable homes for all.

Secure Social Security.

Health care for all, eg Medicare4All.

No more wars of corporate aggression.

Reasonable, efficient, and uncorrupted spending on the military.

Return to the Glass-Steagall kind of regulation of banking, and effective regulation of the financial

industry in general, responsible corporate directors and rational compensation of corporate

and financial managers.

Affordable, high-quality education.

Green, renewable energy.

Abundant jobs, with unionization of the American workforce.

Buy American

Let’s face it:  not a single item – not one – on that list is beyond the attainable.  It is purely a matter of the will of the American people.

Personally, beyond these immediate goals of the Resistance in America, I want:

A radical redistribution of wealth, everywhere on the planet.

Egalitarian communities, with anarchic organization and democratic governance.

Hey, ultimately this is about consciousness.  How conscious are you of life?  the life that occupies others?  the life that occupies you?

99% = our common humanity.  Occupy = consciousness in action.

Is this is a time that tries our souls?   OMG

Note:  This site is a “Web essay,” and this essay is a work in progress.

I am not an expert on any of the topics on these pages, except the literary arts; but I have read and thought and acted regarding these topics for decades.  I am expressing my opinions now because I think that we live in such a crucial time in the life of our country that we must all be thinking, sharing our thoughts, and taking action.

“…the less competent a person is in a given domain, the more he will tend to overestimate his abilities.  This often produces an ugly marriage of confidence and

ignorance that is very difficult to correct for.”   –   Sam Harris, The Moral Landscape, 123

There are many outstanding experts on matters such as economics, politics, and social action who are involved in this effort.  Just one example:  explore this site.   (Also, see  Bib.)

It looks to me as though the 99%Occupy movement has already achieved a significant shift in American political debate, and I hope that it can produce a major shift in the balance of wealth and power, push politicians to meet the immediate needs of the millions of Americans who are desperate, and advance us toward the goal of a much saner America.

Please be involved.  We have to face the fact that we have allowed sociopaths, and fools who emulate them, to gain a great deal of influence in our society, and we must put a stop to it.

Other Topics:  99%OCCUPYnutshellnonviolentpowerhistorymisogynyracismmoneywealth gap 1wealth gap 2republican partynamescapitalismfascismother ismspathologiessocial justice 1social justice 2social justice 3soulbody and soulthingsanarchyactionsbtwbib

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