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It had been many years down that road. The dead-end jobs, the low pay, the work piled on day in and day out; the police harassment, fines doubled up on minor non-moving traffic violations that I couldn't pay, leading to license suspension, which led to losing out on job opportunities, not to mention a generally very difficult life; the landlords' threats of eviction, the callous words of those who knew my predicament. I had thought often: This can't be it: The drudgery, the stress, barely able to pay the rent or make sure there's groceries in the cupboard, the strain on relationships. To top it off, my health was beginning to fail, and I had no means of taking care of it; in fact I'd had my wages garnished for medical bills, arguing with the judge that it was absurd that I couldn't get forgiveness for medical bill debt but I could if it were credit card debt; sort of like my student loan debt which was another one of the plagues dragging me down; and sort of like how I couldn't get the suspension on my license lifted for purposes of using it for work, though I could have if I'd been ticketed for driving under the influence of alcohol (which I was informed of at my local Driving and Motor Vehicles agency). All the while I'd heard rhetoric about compassion and care but witnessed abuse on the job and homelessness in the street. Does it all sound familiar? Well, now it does. It happens to be part of the political dialogue now.

But prior to September 2011, I never heard these issues in the news or anywhere except banging on the inside of my skull. So, when I was surfing the Internet, it was there and not the national news networks that I saw that a growing group of protesters were protesting these very things that gnawed at me, the things which broke me down, the things which often made me reflect, “There's got to be a better way. This can't be the rest of my life.”

Well, when I saw video of those masses of people converging on New York City to protest a broken system, to nail it to the wall, to point out the source of the corruption which infects the whole world with oppression and misery; well, one word can express what I felt: Finally.

And the fact that these protesters were doing something entirely new, not operating within the confines of the existing order; well, that even more so spoke directly to my own condition. Because I had already established very well in my mind that there is something terribly wrong with the whole thing: The disregard, the slavery, the domination, the competitive social order, the struggle for bare necessities. Once a person sees the destructiveness and falsity of all that, there is no turning back. No patchwork reform or common rhetoric will appease.

And that's what Occupy Wall St appeals to in a person like myself: In that, I realized that I was not alone. We cannot follow the old order any longer. And when a group of rag-tag kids went to Zuccotti Park and camped out, they had no plan, no leaders; that would have been the old order, the divisions and ideology, the falling in line, and the veiled authority, the divided solutions that looked away from a true understanding and penetration of the problem itself. They just had an insight into what the problem is and the guts to point it out. And they had the guts to ask the more difficult questions, like whether anyone should have to struggle for food or be forced to work in a system that breaks down the heart  and mind and body, when we have the technological capacity and resources to take care of everyone: It's just we do not feel the need to have that kind of world, we put profits before people. In a truly open forum, which the political process does not actually provide, we should be able to ask such deeper and more penetrating questions like whether the economic system destroys both brain and body, as well as the planet.

In this way, responsibility is not merely the easy route of conformity, but the ability to point out what is wrong and begin something entirely new. Ultimately, Occupy Wall St has shown, through true and direct action, that it is entirely up to us.

For this reason, Occupy Wall St is always news to me.

Here is a video I created which pretty much exemplifies my feelings on the existing social and economic order.

Originally posted to Out With the Old, in With the New on Wed Jun 13, 2012 at 07:37 AM PDT.

Also republished by Occupy Wall Street, ClassWarfare Newsletter: WallStreet VS Working Class Global Occupy movement, Progressive Hippie, and German American Friendship Group.

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Comment Preferences

  •  How cool, in a rudimentary way, is XtraNormal? (0+ / 0-)
  •  The struggle against corporate hegemony (0+ / 0-)

    is the struggle of our times. The many other things we care about are aspects of this struggle. Corporate hegemony precludes our creating environmental policies that we must have for this planet to continue to be such a wonderful and inspiring place to live. It creates a foreign policy that murders innocent people, turns our soldiers into murderers and bankrupts our nation. Corporate money funds the thugs that use sexual and racial politics to divide us. Occupy Wall Street is the best thing to happen in the political arena for decades and this is why politicians and the corporate sycophants that pose as news persons have done their best to marginalize and destroy it.

    I'm truly sorry Man's dominion Has broken Nature's social union--Robert Burns

    by Eric Blair on Wed Jun 13, 2012 at 12:01:07 PM PDT

    •  There is a global aspect to the problem (0+ / 0-)

      in the sense that you're talking about it; in that it involves many things, all having an underlying cause; all of those things you mention: A brutal foreign policy, destruction of the earth, money and power working to incapacitate and divide us; and that power working to silence and discredit those who get to the heart of the matter, who point directly to the center of the problem.

  •  Welcome to the fold. Some of U.S. have been (0+ / 0-)

    Occupying for years, - to see that what we are doing finally has a name. I am Proud to be an Occupier.

    Though I am upset that such may have helped shut down the OccupyLA camp. I am happy to see that - despite the main stream media's quashing of Occupy news stories (due to elections taking center stage) - the fact of the matter is, we are still here OCCUPYING.

    Again, happy to see you here and know that we care.

    Mitt Romney was CEO of Bain until Aug 2001. Proof of Bain & Romney Fraud

    by laserhaas on Wed Jun 13, 2012 at 04:44:45 PM PDT

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