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I'm going to ask you a few questions: Can you imagine a situation where hundreds or potentially thousands of financial criminals from the Wall Street racketeering cartel are properly investigated, indicted, charged, tried, and convicted to serve very long prison sentences?  About government officials that have committed war crimes since 2001 being held to account?  Or what about government officials who have violated their oath of office by acting on behalf of corporate cartels in exchange for campaign contributions and lucrative positions once hey leave office; can you imagine a time where they will be investigated, indicted, charged, and convicted?

Here are a couple of other questions: Can you picture a time when the too-big-to-fail, too-big-too-jail banks that make up the supra-national financial criminal racketeering cartel are totally dismantled in favor of publicly-owned, non-profit financial institutions?  About this: The for-profit, corporate-controlled security/surveillance organizations, starting with the NSA, who are now committing massive crimes and rights violations, totally dismantled (insiders investigated and charged with crimes), in favor of new and real national security agencies totally free from profiteering motives, acting on behalf of the people of this country instead of being tools of oppression on behalf of the Corporate Totalitarian State?

And finally, can you imagine a time where poverty, being an artificial creation of the ruling elite used to manipulate the population, is eradicated, where education, from preschool to graduate school is a right for every citizen, where every person willing and able to work can find employment, when all those in need are taking care of, where we find a way to live in harmony with the environment by tossing aside the sick, destructive and predatory consumerist society in favor of needs-based systems?

Now, here's the thing: I really don't know if all those things will happen, but I have no problem whatsoever not only imagining them, but seeing them as distinct possibilities--for real.

We have been and are being lied to at a massive scale.  For many decades now our senses have been under constant and unrelenting attack, the weapon being a highly sophisticated propaganda apparatus that has implemented the most advanced mass control psychological techniques the world has ever known.

As a result we have internalized certain narratives that end up perpetuating the illegitimate control by corporate cartels over the levers of power, including our (debased and corrupt) political parties and government institutions.

Those narratives, those myths, are now crumbling down as the result of the increased brutality and oppression of the system.  And that explains the ongoing and fast-growing uprising sweeping the nation (and in fact, many other countries as well).

And now that the uprising is spreading, I think it is a good idea we in the movement continue working on finding ways to accurately articulate both, the true nature of the challenges we face, and how we are going to confront those challenges... This is my humble contribution to that discussion.

When I think about these things what I try to understand is the process by which a very tiny group of people are able to have so much control over the population, through some sort of reverse-engineering approach.

So by now many readers are familiar with how a handful of billionaires and corporate cartels dominate our government institutions; in the final analysis we're talking about bribery of our debased and corrupt political class, although it takes different forms.  One of them is of course is the financing of political campaigns.  Another one is influence peddling  facilitated by the revolving door of corruption, where politicians sell their offices to the highest bidder.

And then, of course, you have these mass media conglomerates peddling propaganda, false narratives, and misinformation, in a direct assault to our senses, 24/7.  And behind that you have a web of corporate public relations firms, and think tanks constantly working on the mind-numbing messaging...

And if that wasn't enough, you have tens of thousands (or god-knows how many) of treasonous impersonators being paid by corporate PR firms (or spy government agencies) to cognitively infiltrate the national communications infrastructure (press, TV, radio, blogs, non-profit groups, activist groups, etc.), which represents another front on the constant attack and assault on our cognition capabilities, on our senses.

And finally you have an entire total information awareness surveillance police state infrastructure comprised of government agencies and some of the largest corporations in the country, tasked with monitoring, infiltrating, and disrupting the efforts of social justice activists and groups.

So those are some of the challenges we face.  I seems to me that now that the movement is underway and getting stronger, we should start working on our own enemies list, so our efforts can be more efficient.

Before I continue, and for those needing a little refresher as to the true nature of the system, I recommend they review the work of these people: Henry A Giroux, Bill Moyers, John Nichols, Mark Leibovich, Chris Hedges, David Kay Johnston, Matt Taibbi, and Richard Wolff (Economic Update, Democracy at Work)...

Now getting back to the enemies list, what should we be looking for?  Why are they the enemy?  Well, the reason is because these entities are using their wealth and power to buy off corrupt politicians and instructing them to put in place a regime designed to subvert democracy, prevent workers from unionizing, tear down the regulatory infrastructure that protected us against predatory practices and massive environmental damage, and undermine the public sector in favor of corporate profiteering (neoliberalism), and build detailed dossiers of social activists and groups in order to disrupt their efforts to seek justice.

I think a good start when it comes to making lists of true enemies of the state (of the people) is to examine the information at ALEC Exposed:

Through the corporate-funded American Legislative Exchange Council, global corporations and state politicians vote behind closed doors to try to rewrite state laws that govern your rights. These so-called "model bills" reach into almost every area of American life and often directly benefit huge corporations.
When it comes to the Wall Street criminal racketeering cartel, a good list can be found at the PBS FRONTLINE documentary link: The Untouchables.

Now, the point I'm trying to make is that although at first blush it may seem difficult to identify the actual culprits behind the rise of the illegitimate corporate state, it is actually possible to name names, to identify actual offenders.

And this is important because these cowards do everything they can to hide behind the corporate veil, while they continue to tear down whatever is left of democracy.

Once identified, all of us together can come up with non-violent tactics to target them with direct action.

Let me review briefly something I've written about before, which relates to the role of the activist and of social justice movements.  Let's start with the work of the late Bill Moyer: "Doing Democracy: The MAP Model for Organizing Social Movements"

Social movements involve a long-term struggle between the movement and the powerholders for the hearts, minds, and support of the majority of the population.  Before social movements begin, most people are either unaware that a problem exists or don't believe that they can do anything about it.  They believe the powerholder's societal myths and support the high-sounding official policies and practices, all of which seem to be consistent with the culture's deeply held held values and beliefs...

~snip~

The strategy of social movements, therefore, is to alert, educate, and win over an ever increasing majority of the public.  First the public needs to be convinced that a critical social problem exists.  Then it must be convinced that policies need to be changed.  And then a majority of people must be mobilized into a force that eventually brings about an acceptable solution.

[The emphasis is mine]

So as you can see, it is very important that activists already in the movement work on reaching out to the community at large in the struggle for their "hearts and minds," and their support.

And what does it take succeed in the struggle?  Here's what university professor and researcher Dr. Erica Chenoweth found:

When an average 3.5 percent of any given population engages in non-violent (civil) resistance on a sustained basis, "no single campaign failed."  She also finds that "every single campaign that surpassed that 3.5 percent was a non-violent one."  She goes on to say that "In fact, the non-violent campaigns were on average four times larger than the average violent campaign, and they were often much more inclusive and representative in terms of gender, age, race, political party, class, and the urban role distinction.  Civil resistance allows people of all different levels of physical ability to participate.  This could include the elderly, people with disabilities, women, children, and anyone else who wants to.  If you think about it, everyone is born with a natural physical ability to resist non-violently..."
Because of the mass surveillance by the police state, the struggle against corporate totalitarianism calls for a non-hierarchical approach to organizing direct action against targets.  The reason for that is because the treasonous corporate goons building huge databases and putting together dossiers of activists tend to focus on those who they consider "leaders," and then work on ways to neutralize them.

Here's an approach by Wave of Action:

Comedian Lee Camp: “What if Occupy was just the beginning? What if Occupy was just a wake up call for many actions that are yet to come? I want to tell you about a crowdsourced global wave of action…. If even a small percentage of the world population participates, it’s unstoppable.”
Warning: This video contains explicit language.

I'm actually pleasantly surprised at seeing this type of approach being embraced by the movement, as I think that once it is put into practice, it will spread like wildfire.  I shared a similar idea in 2013 in the following diary: "Protest 3.0 - A Leaderless, Strategic, And Distributed Network Approach to Activism"

As Lee Camp mentions in the video, people could focus on all kinds of targets (for direct non-violent action), according to their interests.  They could be banks, politicians, media organizations.  Many different tactics could be used, including flash mobs, boycotts against corporations associated with ALEC, for example.  Light brigades, posters, flyers, sit-ins...

I'll be conducting more research on these new tactics and share my findings.  In the meantime, I will continue to promote the concept of the "100 Weeks of Revolt" emphasizing the need for the direct non-violent action campaigns to be highly organized, focused, disciplined, and sustained.

Finally, and just to make sure there is no confusion, my point on all this is that I (and many others) believe that relying only on the political process is not going to be enough to turn things around.  Yes, we need to stay fully engaged in the political process, but we also need to put pressure on the core of the system (the corporate state) from without.  It seems to me that throughout American history, during times of crisis, that has always been the approach.  We are undergoing a time of crisis now, having lost most of our democracy to the hands of an illegitimate corporate state.

My priorities when it comes to the movement?  I would start by restoring the rule of law, and to me that means criminally charging banksters, who should face prison.  Also, all public officials who have violated their oath of office by engaging in influence peddling, racketeering, and protection of those who have committed criminal activities should be properly investigated.

Either way, we pretty much have a good idea of what we want: Democracy, justice, respect for the Constitution, and the rule of law (applied equally to all).

But we can't wait on other people to do it.  The time is now, and it is our responsibility to rise up against the illegitimate power of the Corporate State.



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Market For The People |Ray Pensador | Email List | Twitter | Facebook

Sockpuppets & Trolls Watch: Their aim is to disrupt, to annoy, to introduce "noise" in order to prevent meaningful discussions of issues.  Their tactics include casting aspersions (attack on the reputation or integrity), and ad hominems, where instead of addressing issues, they attack the character of people.  They also engage in mockery, and logical fallacies.  A good source of information about the tactics used by sockpuppets, trolls and hacks is "The 15 Rules of Web Disruption."  Once you familiarize yourself with those tactics, it is pretty easy to spot the potential troll.  Once spotted, the best thing is to ignore them. [Image credit: Jacob Bøtter from Copenhagen, Denmark]

Originally posted to Ray Pensador on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 01:11 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I think the constitution is out-dated, to me it's (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Pensador, markthshark, NancyWH

    used  and interpreted like the bible- and if you read history, the rich politicians back then were mostly protecting their property (slaves etc,) too. Following these two old books/words is ridiculous!

    The big problem is who could we trust to re do it now a days? Certainly no politician or religious person IMHO...

    "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

    "It's said that the honest man has nothing to hide. Not true. The honest man has to hide himself, because honest men are the prime targets of those who lie."

    by roseeriter on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 01:15:54 AM PST

    •  Much of it is... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      roseeriter, NancyWH, kharma, Ray Pensador
      I think the constitution is out-dated
      But most of the Bill of Rights (as written) is timeless.

      'Cuz freedom can't protect itself ~~ EFF ~ EPIC ~ ACLU

      by markthshark on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:08:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Human Rights will never be out-dated, but I feel (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NancyWH, markthshark, Ray Pensador

        that these old documents are used to keep us 'in the dark', stymied, stuck in the past-meaning Progress at one's own risk..whereas once 3rd world countries are surpassing America in so many ways...I bet there are So many New Inventions in the rich people houses that most of us 99% haven't even been made aware of because we can't afford such gadgets...instead we're suppose to cling to guns (like they are God-given) and live in biblical times etc.,  all for the control (and I think amusement) of the corrupt in power.

        I mean, we can get streaming movies (through the air, no cables, etc.,) and yet people are still reading the bible???? It's so crazy to me.

        "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

        "It's said that the honest man has nothing to hide. Not true. The honest man has to hide himself, because honest men are the prime targets of those who lie."

        by roseeriter on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:19:51 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm curious (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Cedwyn, Hey338Too, StrayCat, 6412093

          How exactly is the Constitution "used to keep us 'in the dark', stymied, stuck in the past"?

          Even without the Constitution I'm fairly certain that we would be facing essentially the same challenges. Apparently you think otherwise.

          Nothing human is alien to me.

          by WB Reeves on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 03:55:22 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Most of the politicians aren't 'abiding' by the (4+ / 0-)

            rule of law, separation of church and state, freedom of speech, equality etc., etc., They have moved on, making 2 different rules of law etc.,, for the 1%, yet 'WE' 99%ters the citizens, are suppose to lock-step accept the constitution etc.. It's clear to me, though it may contain some words of wisdom, it's no longer working.

            I do agree that even without the constitution our challenges would probably not be much different, except that we are punished by the OLD WAY, just bizarre (and out-dated) behavior IMHO.

            "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

            "It's said that the honest man has nothing to hide. Not true. The honest man has to hide himself, because honest men are the prime targets of those who lie."

            by roseeriter on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 04:12:39 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  ugh (14+ / 0-)
    I seems to me that now that the movement is underway and getting stronger, we should start working on our own enemies list, so our efforts can be more efficient.
    so much for an evolution of consciousness. i won't even bother pointing out whose company you're unwittingly seeking. i will ask what exactly you're planning to do, and even more to the point, what exactly you are doing, in the here and now, in tangible ways, to make anyone's life better.

    The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

    by Laurence Lewis on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:28:44 AM PST

    •  did OWS do anything to make anyone's life better? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ray Pensador, StrayCat

      or was it simply consciousness raising?

    •  Knowing exactly who is buying off the gov't to (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      StrayCat, Don midwest, IowaBiologist

      turn it into a tool of oppression against the good people of this country is a very important part of raising consciousness. Is it better to remain ignorant as to who is doing so and how they are doing it?

      Who bribing the politicians? Who is illegally building detailed dossiers on behalf of corporate cartels on innocent Americans putting them in incredible danger?

      Why do that hurts your feelings. It seem common sense to me.

      •  Who makes the list? (8+ / 0-)

        A charismatic leader? Mic checks? Will the law as currently defined be used, or will it be a new set of laws be crafted based on the morality of the accusers, and then enforced backwards in time?

        I'm not a troll or a sockpuppet; you're making grand statements and it's valid to question them.  No one's feelings are hurt, and btw the tough-guy act doesn't suit you.

        •  Here's one very good list: (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          IowaBiologist, StrayCat

          ALEC is a proto-fascist organization being one of the most powerful and effective proponents of the fusion between corporation and government, and being responsible for some of the most reprehensible legislation in the nation's history.  Therefore, businesses and politicians associated with ALEC can easily fit into the definition of enemies of democracy.  So here's one list of over 150 such enemies.

          I have no idea about what your talking about regarding a so-called "charismatic leader" making such lists, since my understanding is that this particular list was put together by the good people of The Center for Media and Democracy.

          And guess what?  When it comes to real enemies lists in this context, it works: Xcel Energy and Endo Health Cut Ties to ALEC, Making 72 Corporations Out

          As I mentioned in the diary, another enemies list can be found at: PBS FRONTLINE documentary link: The Untouchables.

          Again, that list is being maintain by a group of people, no "charismatic leader there."

          And guess what, people are already mobilizing to take direct non-violent action against many of these players, in multiple ways, including protests, boycotts, public relations campaign, etc.

          Regarding the tough guy allusion, I don't know, maybe you can tell me about it; do you consider yourself a tough guy?

      •  in case you haven't noticed (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Hey338Too, doroma

        some of us continually identify corruption and abuse. but some of us aren't imto using the same tactics. some of us also make efforts in the here and now to make people's lives tangibly better.  do you?

        The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

        by Laurence Lewis on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 09:42:55 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  That's my only objective as an activist, to (0+ / 0-)

          help in any way I can in making people's lives better.

          Identifying corruption and abuse and sharing the findings with the public and encouraging people to act on that knowledge, in multiple ways, including full engagement in the political process, social justice activism, rallies, protests, boycotts of corrupt companies, and a host of other activities, all legal and under the full protection of the United States Constitution is what I advocate.

          What leads you to lob such an attack on me?  Which tactics are you talking about?  The only tactics I'm proposing is for all of us together to become aware about exactly how undemocratic corrupt forces act behind the scenes to usurp democracy, and then expose them.

          It seems to me that that would be at the heart of any campaign meant to identify corruption and abuse.

          •  awareness is good (4+ / 0-)

            and i've told you more than once that while i often agree with some of what you write, i usually find you take it one or several steps beyond what i can support. which, of course, you always dismiss, just as you always dismiss any criticism, even when it is meant to be constructive.

            The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

            by Laurence Lewis on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:07:57 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Laurance, how am I dismissing you? We are (0+ / 0-)

              engaging in debate right now.  If you notice our exchange so far it is you who is questioning my motives, and putting me down.

              I haven't done that to you.  I'm responding to your attacks in respectful manner.

              It is totally fine if you agree with some of my views and strongly disagree with others.  I understand if you say that some of my ideas are several steps beyond what you can support.  There is nothing wrong with that.  You can just say so in your rebuttals...

              But instead you've questioned my motives, and have engaged in put-downs against me.  Think about that.

              •  my attitude (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                undercovercalico

                is based on how you often respond. but my overall advice is to engage with rather than alienate yourself from. and spend more time considering the difference between theory and action, and what actions actually make a tangible difference in people's lives. to use one obvious example, what most struck me about occupy wasn't the politics, it was that most of the people i met didn't care at all about theory or cataloguing enemies, they just wanted food to eat and a safe place to sleep, and a sense of solidarity in that people working together can make things better. grassroots movements need to start in the grass roots.

                The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

                by Laurence Lewis on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:22:56 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  So what you object is people engaging in (0+ / 0-)

                  thinking about these things carefully, in trying to connect the dots?  No can't do.  I'll do both; engage with people in different setting, listen, observe, learn, understand, AND think about the challenges we face, try to come up with ideas as to the best way to confront those challenges, etc.

                  I understand if you don't like that approach and prefer to focus on the symptoms.  I'm always thinking about the root causes.  We just have different approaches.

        •  As to what am I doing? (0+ / 0-)

          I put an incredible amount of hours in putting together information resources at raypensador.com, and marketforthepeople.com.  Notice all the links, videos, sources of information.  There is nothing that alludes to violence of illegality, and those resources are being used by hundreds of people a day, clicking through articles, research, etc.

          I'm developing ideas around a "100 Weeks" of direct action, trying to encourage different groups, including people heavily involved in Democratic part politics, activists, to find a way to meet at public spaces once a week so they can build solidarity, find common ground, and eventually become a more cohesive national movement.

          I attend as many protest rallies as I can, and take the time to take pictures, take videos, sometimes spending several hours into the night editing the videos.

          I've built an email list of about 425 people from all over the country and I share research, information, and resources with them.

          I'm doing research on housing alternatives, sustainable food production and delivery, employee-owned enterprises, and then I'm sharing my findings in my writings.

          You see, I'm trying to do what I can, both online, and in the streets.

          That's the answer.  Now, what are you doing?  Perhaps you can share it with us; maybe we can get some good ideas from all the things your doing for the movement.




          •  that's all very good (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            undercovercalico

            but it's all very abstract. maybe spend more time with people in the daily trenches of real life, not just theory and protest. maybe engage with some of the people you often cite as ignorant or part of the problem- the middle class and upper middle class suburbanites, who you often seem to think are part of the problem, when in reality many if not most of them also actually agree with many of your ideas, but are also working their asses off to keep their heads above water in the here and now, while also trying to be socially responsible. you want to expand your reach beyond a few hundred people, you have to get to know people, and understand their lives, rather than watching them from afar.

            The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

            by Laurence Lewis on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:13:28 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  And what makes you think that I'm not doing (0+ / 0-)

              those things also?  What makes you think that I don't have sympathy for people who are trying to keep their heads above water, and working their assess of.

              Did I ever mentioned to you that I've worked with several non-profits (as a consultant), that I've received awards for volunteerism, that I've done public speaking throughout the years working with disadvantaged communities?

              Lawrence, your insinuations are baseless.  What are you doing?  Tell me what you've done.  Maybe you feel you are that much better an activist.

              •  your own writings (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                WB Reeves, Hey338Too, doroma

                read some of the comments in your post about your visit to the peninsula. write about what you've done in the trenches. give people tangible ideas for what they can do in the trenches, other than attending protests or dreaming of revolution. i am and always have been involved, in various ways, with more environmental, anti-poverty, homeless, justice, peace, and personal recovery organizations than i can count. because that is where the real work is being done.

                The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

                by Laurence Lewis on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:26:31 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

  •  I agree with all of the above. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roseeriter, kharma, Ray Pensador

    I watched a documentary about how some books were put in some versions of the Bible, and others left out.  They were put together by committees, in short.  

    Good morning Ray!  Thanks for the morning cup of inspiration.  Now I'm off to work!

    "The light which puts out our sight is darkness to us." Thoreau

    by NancyWH on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:31:19 AM PST

  •  Okay. Assuming that everything you say (13+ / 0-)

    is correct, including the corporatist elite, the corruption in government, the incessant and viable espionage, etc., etc. And assuming that, somehow, it can all be purged, no matter what the mechanism.

    Once you've got it, how do you propose to keep it that way?

    What methods do you propose that will keep people with a taste for personal power out of power in it, or constrained against exercising that power in personal ways if they get it? It is not enough to say "elect moral people" - just how do you intend to winnow the population of those who are interested in running for office? Psychological evaluation up front to get rid of the "sociopaths"? Our science of psychology is still in the alchemy stage for taking on that kind of responsibility.

    Unless what you are proposing is, effectively, an overthrow of our current goverment, then the same incentives for consolidating power will still exist in essentially the same places they do now. What counter-incentives can you offer that will mitigate the very real rewards that those positions hold for power-seekers? How do you plan to keep your opposition from offering real rewards to those who favor them? The threat of punishment for wrongdoing is not enough.

    It is not enough to say "throw the rascals out", unless the objective is to replace them with your own set of rascals.

    At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

    by serendipityisabitch on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:42:11 AM PST

    •  Very cogent points (9+ / 0-)

      If the experience of the 20th century proves anything, it's that the strategy of curing social and political ills by displacing existing elites and installing new ones has been an utter failure. Our problems are systemic and structural so any real solutions will require a radical overhaul of both.

      At best, such a strategy may help create the conditions for the needed changes but repopulating the leadership of existing institutions alone simply won't get the job done. Institutional and cultural inertia, absent any countervailing force, would act powerfully upon the new leadership to insure that they didn't stray too far from the status quo.

      Some of us have seen this in their own lifetimes. Those who came of age in the post New Deal era of post war Liberal consensus grew up in a time when it seemed unthinkable that there could be a relapse into the economic and political practices that brought on the Great Depression. Yet that is exactly what has happened over the last thirty plus years.

      For myself, I think the lesson is plain; we need broad based, popular mass movements animated by a clear and coherent advocacy of the required changes, economic, political and cultural, capable of operating in a coordinated fashion, to provide the necessary counter weight to entrenched interests and habits.

      This isn't a short term strategy. It doesn't promise salvation by tomorrow morning. It would require a long term commitment of time, energy and effort to rebuild existing popular organizations as well as developing new, innovative ones. It would also demand a high degree of solidarity between the participating movements, which in turn requires a clear, compelling program of practical action. Amorphous, inspirational cheer leading isn't a sufficient substitute.  

      Nothing human is alien to me.

      by WB Reeves on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 03:49:24 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm not so sure there's anything plain about it. (8+ / 0-)
        we need broad based, popular mass movements animated by a clear and coherent advocacy of the required changes, economic, political and cultural
        First, the "required changes" need to be defined. And none of them can fall into the "if only people were better" arena, or clarity jumps out the window and crashes into the pavement below.

        I do not know whether it is inevitable that a certain percentage of the population will rise to power no matter what the cultural institutions are, but I suspect it. Hence, I suspect any system which does not take that phenomena into account, at least for the purposes of deciding what not only the constraints on that power, but the incentives to use it for the long term betterment / existence of society, will need to be. And it is incredibly difficult to define short term incentives that actually promote long term planning. I think it is possible, but that in itself could require major shifts in how we think.

        Aren't details a wonderful thing?

        At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

        by serendipityisabitch on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 04:49:28 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  let me be a bit cheerful :) (2+ / 0-)

          Ray's totalizing rhetoric tends to demand total solutions. But if we don't actually need a total solution — if we can hope to muddle through — then the demands on mass movements aren't so intractable.

          Conveniently, I have to run for a train and can't say much more, except that I do see movements doing good things. I don't see it as "Uprising" or "Revolution," but I do see it.

          "I am not sure how we got here, but then, I am not really sure where we are." -Susan from 29

          by HudsonValleyMark on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:12:59 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  No lack of cheer on this end, either. I have no (3+ / 0-)

            particular problem with the idea of a mass movement either, except that envisioning a solid concept that would unify one is a whole lot harder than taking apart somebody else's ideas.

            I don't think there are any "total" solutions - only partial ones - because along the way, if there's a real solution, things change....

            At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

            by serendipityisabitch on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 11:53:11 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, "wonderful" in the original meaning (3+ / 0-)

          of the word, which isn't synonymous with "good".

          Just as "plain" isn't really a synonym for simple or easy.

          You've put your finger on the nub of the problem.

          First, the "required changes" need to be defined. And none of them can fall into the "if only people were better" arena, or clarity jumps out the window and crashes into the pavement below.
          That's why "...a clear, compelling program of practical action." is required. We don't have one yet because we have no broad, unifying consensus as to what the root problems are. Consequently, there's no agreement for what is to be done.

          His efforts not withstanding, Ray doesn't have one either. That's why he clings so tenaciously to his 5% notion. It gives the impression of at least shrinking the problem down to a more manageable size.

          Even at that he can't manage much more than a rather gauzy, impressionistic vision of desired outcomes, such as frog marching Wall Streeters off to prison en masse or abolishing of the current State security apparatus, coupled with a mass "uprising" animated by little more than an angry demand for retribution and a nebulous conviction that the needed solutions will, somehow, emerge from that process.

          The fundamental flaw in this is that it puts the cart before the horse. The kind of movements that succeed in overturning the entrenched powers of the status quo aren't built on wishful thinking that puts off coming up with solutions until after the revolution. It's easy to retail slogans about bringing down the "Corporate Totalitarian State" to an impassioned coterie. Much more difficult to deal convincingly with the nuts and bolts of what will replace it.

          Of course, it's precisely those nuts and bolts that the vast majority of folks want to hear about before they put themselves, their families and their loved ones at risk. Absent this, people generally opt for the devil they know over the devil they don't.

          Which brings us to your second point. How to insure that what follows the current status quo won't wind up simply being a repetition of what has come before or perhaps something worse?

          There's no simple or easy answer to that question. There are no guarantees in life, particularly in the political sphere. I do think that, as with your first point, the answer must lie in reconstituting and reconstructing  the democratic ethos in our society. This with the understanding that in any healthy democratic society, the relationship between the individual and the collective, the minority and the majority, must be synergistic rather than antagonistic.  

             

          Nothing human is alien to me.

          by WB Reeves on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:38:00 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Making your own enemies list is not the answer. (13+ / 0-)

    The people of France had legitimate and extreme grievances when they decided to seek "justice" with the guillotine.

    Though you express disrespect for the work of others to create change through action as I see by the title, I prefer the respect, empower, include approach.

    This quote is by someone who has made a different and more compelling stand for freedom and human rights.

    "For hatred is corrosive of a person’s wisdom and conscience; the mentality of enmity can poison a nation’s spirit, instigate brutal life and death struggles, destroy a society’s tolerance and humanity, and block a nation’s progress to freedom and democracy. I hope therefore to be able to transcend my personal vicissitudes in understanding the development of the state and changes in society, to counter the hostility of the regime with the best of intentions, and defuse hate with love...."  Liu Xiaobo

  •  we don't even do voting right - democracy? (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lostinamerica, Ray Pensador, StrayCat

    John Nichols in his article points out that voting commission has good recommendations, but .....

    The truth is that, on too many levels, the United States does not respect the right to vote, to have votes counted and to have the results of voting genuinely reflected in the governance of communities, states and the nation.
    What is ultimately required is an absolute guarantee of the right to vote and the right to have that vote counted. That affirmation should be added to the United States Constitution, in an amendment along the lines of the one proposed last year by Congressman Keith Ellison, D-Minnesota, and Congressman Mark Pocan, D-Wisconsin.
    this diary points out that politicians work for the 1% and do not take seriously the infrastructure of democracy, even in the fundamental issue of voting

    The Infrastructure of American Democracy Is Dysfunctional

  •  A good example of the dangers of an "enemies (14+ / 0-)

    list" can be seen in Ray's first paragraph.  

    Can you imagine a situation where hundreds or potentially thousands of financial criminals from the Wall Street racketeering cartel are properly investigated, indicted, charged, tried, and convicted to serve very long prison sentences?  
    Which is it and who is it that needs to be punished with long prison sentences?  Hundreds or Thousands?  How many people does Ray think were actually in on the scams created by the big banks.  Ray's approach is very similar to that of many revolutionaries who painted with a broad brush and simply punished categories of people rather than defining their crimes ahead of time. It's how "artists, homosexuals, dissidents, children of the aristocracy and ethnic groups" get on the enemies list.  All it takes is one charismatic leader or a group of leaders to decide who the "enemies" are.  Many, many bankers on Ray's list were doing things that were legal, though morally reprehensible.  Do we get to suspend the laws in order to punish those people too?  Who is going to decide which laws we follow?  And how they are interpreted.  Right now that is the Department of Justice.  And they have prosecuted some but probably not enough.  What does Ray replace the Department of Justice with?  Citizen Grand Juries?  A person or committee that thinks like him?

    None of this is a defense of bankers or banks.  And none of this is meant to imply that there aren't illegal actors in the banking industry who need to be punished.  But what I see in this diary is dangerous rhetoric about enemies lists combined with the implication that there is a broad category of potentially thousands of people that the diarist thinks should be punished by "the people".  It isn't a new rhetorical device but it is one that should give students of history a pause.

    "Speak the TRUTH, even if your voice shakes."

    by stellaluna on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 05:11:13 AM PST

  •  Need a Pro-Democracy movement (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Pensador, StrayCat

    sounds like Ray is calling for a


    First Things First: Why the United States Need a Pro-Democracy Movement
    Until we fix our democracy problem, it's hard to fix any problem.

    again this is but one problem of the money in politics

    along with the efforts of the Republicans to destroy governance

    and the lack of Democratic full court support of the constitution

    along with a media that reinforces the power structure

    without campaign financing, and a 12 billion dollar election cycle last time that will get more expensive, money will be circulated from oligarch to big business who own the networks and the "citizens" will be manipulated as consumers of stuff

  •  The rule of law, or the reign of terror? (13+ / 0-)
    I would start by restoring the rule of law, and to me that means criminally charging banksters, who should face prison.  Also, all public officials who have violated their oath of office by engaging in influence peddling, racketeering, and protection of those who have committed criminal activities should be properly investigated.
    I've challenged you on this before: If this is really about the "rule of law," how will you account for the fact that many of the immoral acts committed by both those in the financial services industry and by the politicians and bureaucrats they bought were completely legal, according to the laws in place at the time those acts occurred?

    Because the remainder of this piece, in which you call for your movement to compile an "enemies list" of "true enemies of the state (of the people)," makes me seriously question whether you would let them go if their actions were legal according to the laws that were in place when they took those actions, if you had the power to decide these things.

    Compiling a list of "true enemies [...] of the people," against whom your army of activists will be taking "direct action," smacks more of Robespierre than of anyone truly committed to the "rule of law," even with the perfunctory addition of the word "nonviolent."

    (Furthermore, given your frequent personal attacks against your critics in these threads, in which you all but accuse them of being "sockpuppets," "shills," and "disrupters," one is forced to wonder: How many Daily Kos members do you have on your "enemies list"?)

    "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

    by JamesGG on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 05:21:46 AM PST

    •  The claims by Obama and others that many (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ray Pensador, IowaBiologist

      of the actions by the banisters and Wall Street predators was legal is just not true.  It is just as criminal to seek illegal ends by legal means as I is to seek legal ends by illegal means.  Those who claim that much of the activity was legal are parsing the law into tiny bits and pieces, and not reading the law as a whole.  Committees of the U.S. Senate found much criminal conduct by the people who caused the Recession/Depression of 1007/8, and laid out a template for the Justice Department to follow in prosecuting the worst of these criminals.  Holder, and Obama were more concerned about the well being of some large corporate entities than about the equal and fair administration of the law.  This fear was, of course, totally unfounded, because where corporations go down, the useful assets of that paper entity are transferred by sale or auction to other businesses.  Corporations are filings in the various Secretaries of State in the several states, and their rights and powers are purely statutory.  These rights can be changed by the legislatures, and some ought to be as soon as possible.  Corporations should not have perpetual existence, nor should they be able to own other business entities.  Corporations should have, in their charter, a specific description of the business that they intend to engage in, and to be limited to that business.  Vertical integration ought to be forbidden, as it tends strongly to monopoly.  Corporate mergers by entities engaged in the same businesses ought to be closely scrutinized, and the anti-trust doctrine should no longer be limited to the "will the consumer be harmed" analysis.  Finally, corporation can not longer be allowed to make themselves extra national by having their country of organization different from their home office, and must not be allowed to shift tax obligation among countries so that trying to collect properly due taxes is reduced to a game of Three Card Monte.
           Then state of affairs with corporate license to steal can only be a product of corruption, as the problems arising from the present state of affairs have been extensively studied, yet have been ignored totally.

      Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels, but religion is assuredly the first.

      by StrayCat on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 08:42:36 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I accept your challenge. First of all, trying to (0+ / 0-)

      somehow insinuate that someone is advocating a "reign of terror" is a character assassination accusation.  I strongly object you using that accusation against me, and unless you can find anywhere in my writing where I advocate in any way shape or form for violence or for the targeting of individuals in a "reign of terror" fashion, I demand an apology from you.  

      Remember, it is you who are choosing to click on to this diary to insult me in such fashion.

      Regarding what you claim to be "completely legal," my argument is that the levers of power have been taken over by undemocratic forces, by corporate cartels, by very rich and powerful individuals, and that they have turn the state, its security and surveillance apparatus into a tool of oppression and subjugation against the good people of this country.

      And so I argue that "When injustice becomes law resistance becomes duty."

      You see, I'm arguing FOR the observance of the rule of law and due process; I'm arguing FOR respect of the Constitution; I'm arguing FOR an end of the illegitimate power and control these undemocratic forces have over our country.

      Regarding the allusion to an "enemies list," I use it in the truest sense of the word, as I explained in this thread.  I consider ALEC a proto-fascist organization in that they are one of the most effective proponents of the total fusion between corporation and government.

      And in that context, I consider companies associated with ALEC, funders, and politicians, to be enemies of the state, of the good people of this country because they are using the power of the state, hidden behind the veneer of the law, to act against the interests of the people.

      And so I advocate direct action against these enemies, including boycotts, protests, and exposure so the public is informed about what these companies are doing.

      Again, nothing I propose is outside the protections afforded to us by the U.S. Constitution.  Nothing I propose relates to violence of any kind, nor rounding up people extra-judicially, nor engaging in a so-called "reign of terror."

      Regarding what you call my "personal attacks" against my critics, I challenge you to look at my last few diaries and find anywhere where I'm calling any single person a sockpuppet or a troll.

      •  It's a historical reference. (3+ / 0-)
        First of all, trying to somehow insinuate that someone is advocating a "reign of terror" is a character assassination accusation.
        I'm a bit surprised that you didn't get the historical reference, particularly since I directly referenced Robespierre later on in the comment. I'm not going to apologize for suggesting that your declaring certain people to be "enemies [...] of the people"—and thus subject to being placed on an "enemies list" for legal punishment should you and your movement seize the reins of power—is reminiscent of Robespierre and the Reign of Terror in 18th century post-revolutionary France.

        That you're continuing to perfunctorily mention nonviolence, rather than directly calling for the guillotine, doesn't make the comparison invalid in my opinion; in both cases, there's a finding of guilt that essentially operates outside the existing legal system and without any kind of due process, by which you would subject those found guilty to some kind of punitive action.

        Regarding what you claim to be "completely legal," my argument is that the levers of power have been taken over by undemocratic forces, by corporate cartels, by very rich and powerful individuals, and that they have turn the state, its security and surveillance apparatus into a tool of oppression and subjugation against the good people of this country.
        That doesn't address my point in the slightest. You weren't just calling for the changing of laws and a shift in political and economic power from the wealthy to the common people (something I completely support, by the way). You were suggesting that those who committed immoral or abusive acts in the current legal context be criminally prosecuted for those acts.

        Given your contention, it's perfectly valid to ask what you would do if it turns out their actions were perfectly legal under the laws that existed at the time of those actions. Would you allow them to go free? Please answer that question, since you didn't answer it the first time around.

        Regarding what you call my "personal attacks" against my critics, I challenge you to look at my last few diaries and find anywhere where I'm calling any single person a sockpuppet or a troll.
        The qualifications you add to that challenge, I believe, only indicate how closely you're trying to shave the line between acceptable and unacceptable behavior on this site.

        By restricting the challenge to "[your] last few diaries," you deftly avoid past instances in which you pretty blatantly, if still with a thin veneer of plausible deniability, accused your critics of being an organized group of sockpuppets and trolls whose purpose was to disrupt discussion.

        And by stipulating that it be "any single person," you're setting it up so you can elide the instances in which you have:
        - Made accusations against groups of your critics as (for example) "the same tiny group [...] swarming" without using the specific words "sockpuppet" or "troll."
        - Added just enough qualification to your accusations against individual users so that you could say that you weren't actually accusing them.
        - Replied to comments with references to your list of "things trolls do" and allowed other commenters to fill it in by calling your critics "sockpuppets" and "trolls."

        If you ask me, I think you doth protest a bit too much here. I think it's rather clear that you know exactly what you're doing. But at the risk of this becoming another episode of "Ray Pensador does meta," I'll leave it at that, and ask you to address the first part of my comment about the substance of your post, and in particular to answer the question from my first comment—which I repeated in this comment since you failed to answer it in your first reply.

        "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

        by JamesGG on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:08:16 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Anything taken out of context can be "an (0+ / 0-)

          historical reference."  The context in which I apply the "enemies list" label to is one where powerful individuals and corporate cartels engage in the usurpation of democracy by buying off the political class and turning the levers of power, the awesome power of the state, against the people.

          Regarding helping bring about the changes we need to correct the situation, including removing corporatist control over our system of government, I (and many others) argue that we need to engage in direct-action activism against the forces usurping democracy, and that includes political involvement (of course), research, public education and outreach, trying to build unity and solidarity within the social justice movement, and pressure tactics such as protest rallies.

          Some of those pressure tactics could include boycotting companies that are clearly engaging in anti-democratic activities, picketing, letter writing, and a thousand other legal and peaceful tactics.

          Lastly, of course, you can't find any instance of me calling somebody a troll or a sockpuppet.  You may want to extrapolate and assign meaning to things that are not there, but that's your choosing.

          Regarding trollish behavior, well, actions speak for themselves.  Some commenters either act like trolls consistently, or they don't.

          The behavior is very easy to spot and it speaks for itself.

          •  You don't get to set your own context. (3+ / 0-)
            The context in which I apply the "enemies list" label to is one where powerful individuals and corporate cartels engage in the usurpation of democracy by buying off the political class and turning the levers of power, the awesome power of the state, against the people.
            And yet in the very same post, you suggest that for many of those "enemies," you would like them to face criminal charges for their actions. That removes this from the arena of just nonviolent direct action from citizens, and into the arena of the society you envision as the ideal endpoint of your activism.

            You would like to see those on your "enemies list" not only pursued by individual citizens engaging in nonviolent direct action, but ultimately by prosecutors filing criminal charges on behalf of the state, which would use violence (imprisonment is certainly a coercive/violent act) to punish them.

            So it comes down to the fact that you still haven't yet answered the question I have now posed to you twice. I'll ask it again: If it turns out that the immoral and abusive actions of those you want to punish criminally were perfectly legal at the time those actions were taken, would you allow them to go free?

            (It's also worth noting that you haven't indicated even in the context of nonviolent direct action the process you would use to place individuals or companies on this "enemies list," what kind of finding of fact would be involved, where the presumption of innocence would be, etc. Those are pretty important aspects, particularly when you're writing about taking punitive actions against individuals or organizations.)

            "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

            by JamesGG on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:44:03 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Here's a very direct answer: (0+ / 0-)
              If it turns out that the immoral and abusive actions of those you want to punish criminally were perfectly legal at the time those actions were taken, would you allow them to go free?
              You may be familiar with an article a federal judge wrote recently where he marvels mightily at the fact that there has not been any high profile criminal prosecutions in this latest reign of rampant criminality by Wall Street.  He wonders how that could be the case if during other similar circumstances scores of high levels executives were sent to prison.

              I'm sure you are aware that this is a recurrent theme in today's social commentary; many observers, writers, intellectuals, activists, regular folks are highly offended that it seems like crimes have been committed with total impunity.

              Now, here's my take on the situation: The levers of power, including agencies like the Justice Department, are damaged by influence-peddling corruption.  For example, high functionaries in many of these agencies go through a revolving door between government and corporations who may have committed crimes.  This is an obvious conflict of interest.

              I argue that because of this situation, there are crimes being committed right now, where government functionaries are actively protecting wrongdoers that happen to be their former and future employers.

              I argue that this situation is intolerable to the good people of this country, and that is why there is an uprising spreading fast throughout the country.

              I argue that at some point it is going to spread like wildfire and that it is going to force the removal of influence-peddling corruption.

              At that point, I argue that once these government functionaries which I believe are on the take, are removed from their positions, and replaced by true and honest public servants, that if they conduct cursory investigations that they will find probable cause to indict and prosecute scores of people including those in the Wall Street criminal racketeering cartel, and possibly government functionaries who engaged in cover-ups and protection.

              That's it; that's my argument.  It's not that complicated.

              •  That still didn't answer my question. (4+ / 0-)

                You're trying to make the case that prosecutable crimes occurred within the financial services industry and related bureaucracy, and that the prosecutions would necessarily be successful because it's so obvious to you that they broke the law. But that's not what I'm getting at.

                What I'm getting at is this: Let's suppose for the sake of argument that you're wrong, and the chances of successfully prosecuting the financial services industry and related federal regulators on criminal charges are much lower than you think.

                Let's suppose for the sake of argument that despite the fact that you know and I know that their actions were corrupt and immoral, it's not possible to convict them on criminal charges due to a combination of the leeway given by the law to federal regulators to interpret their regulations, the extent to which the financial services industry captured the federal legislative process in order to decriminalize their actions, and the need to prove them guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

                If after investigation it was found that the actions taken by the financial services industry and related federal regulators couldn't be proven beyond a reasonable doubt to have violated the criminal law in place at the time when they engaged in those actions, despite the fact that we all know they were wrong and should have been criminal, would you then support letting them go free?

                That's the question on the table, the question I've been asking for three comments now. Please answer it.

                "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

                by JamesGG on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:11:04 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  The first thing is that anybody that would (0+ / 0-)

                  presuppose the issue in the way you present it would be engaging first and foremost in apologia and defense of the corrupt status quo.  So the first part of my answer is that the premises for your suppositions are faulty.

                  Secondly, I argue that it would be totally absurd to think that in what seems to be a wave of criminal behavior by Wall Street much more bigger than anything before, that no a single high-level official has been found guilty of criminal misconduct.

                  Here's what Judge Rakoff, who sits on the Federal District Court in Manhattan, wrote in a recent article titled "The Financial Crisis: Why Have No High-Level Executives Been Prosecuted?"

                  Five years have passed since the onset of what is sometimes called the Great Recession. While the economy has slowly improved, there are still millions of Americans leading lives of quiet desperation: without jobs, without resources, without hope.

                  But if, by contrast, the Great Recession was in material part the product of intentional fraud, the failure to prosecute those responsible must be judged one of the more egregious failures of the criminal justice system in many years. Indeed, it would stand in striking contrast to the increased success that federal prosecutors have had over the past fifty years or so in bringing to justice even the highest-level figures who orchestrated mammoth frauds. Thus, in the 1970s, in the aftermath of the “junk bond” bubble that, in many ways, was a precursor of the more recent bubble in mortgage-backed securities, the progenitors of the fraud were all successfully prosecuted, right up to Michael Milken.

                  Again, in the 1980s, the so-called savings-and-loan crisis, which again had some eerie parallels to more recent events, resulted in the successful criminal prosecution of more than eight hundred individuals, right up to Charles Keating. And again, the widespread accounting frauds of the 1990s, most vividly represented by Enron and WorldCom, led directly to the successful prosecution of such previously respected CEOs as Jeffrey Skilling and Bernie Ebbers.

                  In striking contrast with these past prosecutions, not a single high-level executive has been successfully prosecuted in connection with the recent financial crisis, and given the fact that most of the relevant criminal provisions are governed by a five-year statute of limitations, it appears likely that none will be. It may not be too soon, therefore, to ask why.

                  [The emphasis is mine]

                  So if you notice this Federal District Court judge questions the entire premise about the supposed difficulty of criminally prosecuting these crimes.

                  I also question the premise, and furthermore, I argue that the reason for it is corruption, the revolving door influence-peddling type.

                  So again, I see those who in the face of what appears to be rampant looting and criminality by what I call the Wall Street criminal racketeering cartel, try to make excuses as to why it would be too hard to criminally prosecute those folks as system apologists.

                  And I stand by my opinion that the reason for this absurdity is because government functionaries are on the take, in the final analysis, because of the revolving door of influence peddling corruption.

                  •  More ad hominems from you, but still no answer. (4+ / 0-)
                    The first thing is that anybody that would presuppose the issue in the way you present it would be engaging first and foremost in apologia and defense of the corrupt status quo.  So the first part of my answer is that the premises for your suppositions are faulty.
                    For someone who supposedly abhors ad hominems, you sure do engage in a lot of them. That right there is pretty much the archetypal ad hominem; you write that "the premises for [my] suppositions are faulty" not because you actually point out the faults in any kind of logical or intellectual way, but because you are incapable of conceiving of a reason why I would present such presuppositions except "in apologia and defense of the status quo."

                    In that paragraph, you substantively address exactly zero of the arguments I was making, instead choosing to cast aspersions on my motivations and character and pretend as if your accusations against me are a worthy substitute for an actual intelligent treatment of my argument.

                    Of course, this isn't anywhere remotely near the first time you've done so, even to me—and it makes your complaints about ad hominem attacks supposedly being leveled against you look like either rank hypocrisy or an insult to the intelligence of your readers.

                    Oh, and by the way: My only presumption about those on your "enemies list" is that the law should consider them innocent of criminal charges until proven guilty in a court of law. That's another fundamental part of the "rule of law" that you extol.

                    Secondly, I argue that it would be totally absurd to think that in what seems to be a wave of criminal behavior by Wall Street much more bigger than anything before, that no a single high-level official has been found guilty of criminal misconduct.
                    Except that you didn't write about a single high-level official being found guilty of criminal conduct; your dream society is one in which "hundreds or potentially thousands" of people are found guilty of criminal conduct, and until they are, you'll have to content yourself with putting them on your list of "enemies [...] of the people." Those are your own words.
                    So again, I see those who in the face of what appears to be rampant looting and criminality by what I call the Wall Street criminal racketeering cartel, try to make excuses as to why it would be too hard to criminally prosecute those folks as system apologists.
                    So again, you engage in ad hominems and cast aspersions on my motivations and character instead of actually providing an answer to what should be a very simple question, which can in fact have a one-word answer. So I'm going to ask it, yet again: If prosecutors were unable to prove that the actions of "hundreds or potentially thousands" on your list of "enemies [...] of the people" in the financial services industry or among their regulators were criminal according to the laws in place at the time of those actions, would you let them go?

                    Your answer to that question will determine whether or not you really believe in the "rule of law."

                    "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

                    by JamesGG on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 07:02:33 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

  •  OXFAM states what is needed at Davros (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Pensador, StrayCat

    up on the REC list right now is the global issue that Ray is writing about

    these issues are not going to go away

    there will be a global response

    since most political systems are corrupt, it will take action in the streets

    my hunch is that Ray is totally aligned with these points

    Call to those gathered at Davos

    Those gathered at Davos for the World Economic Forum have the power to turn around the rapid increase in inequality. Oxfam is calling on them to pledge that they will:

    • Not dodge taxes in their own countries or in countries where they invest and operate, by using tax havens;

    • Not use their economic wealth to seek political favors that undermine the democratic will of their fellow citizens;

    • Make public all the investments in companies and trusts for which they are the ultimate beneficial owners;

    • Support progressive taxation on wealth and income;

    • Challenge governments to use their tax revenue to provide universal healthcare, education and social protection for citizens;

    • Demand a living wage in all the companies they own or control;

    • Challenge other economic elites to join them in these pledges.

    [http://www.dailykos.com/...
    Now that you know 85 people own more than half the world, here's what to do about it]
  •  An enemies list is a good place to start (9+ / 0-)

    if you want to become what you claim to loathe.

  •  The Bill Moyers quotes are great (4+ / 0-)

    Thanks for posting.

    As you've probably already noticed, however, you're going to lose a lot of people when you start talking about "enemy lists"

    •  If I write a diary about cute puppies the same (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      StrayCat

      tiny group will swarm it with all kinds of nasty innuendos about my nefarious real intentions about puppies; the same with kitties.

      We need to know who is buying of the gov't turning it into a tool of oppression. And we need to target them for direct non-violent action.That is just the reality of the situation.

      The naysayers? Who cares?

      •  B5. Also, reality check: (5+ / 1-)
        Recommended by:
        serendipityisabitch, citizenx, Hey338Too, doroma, emelyn
        Hidden by:
        ZhenRen

        "I am not sure how we got here, but then, I am not really sure where we are." -Susan from 29

        by HudsonValleyMark on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 07:10:35 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Needs the link to the key (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Hey338Too, doroma, HudsonValleyMark

          here ;)

          At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

          by serendipityisabitch on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 07:14:33 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  This bingo game you've all been gleefully (3+ / 0-)

            using to mercilessly mock the diarist is meaningless as a rebuttal. I've no doubt just about anything stated could be found somewhere on that board.

            In terms of the soundness of referring to this list as an answer to an argument, it is completely baseless and illogical. For example, one entry is "answering a question that hasn't been asked." A diarist is not bound to answer all questions posed, and not bound to refrain from making statements which weren't asked for. If questions seem to be insincere, or already answered, or a form of harassment, the only way to effectively deal with that is to ignore it in most cases.

            The second item, "answer by quoting from the diary" is done by diarists all the time. The number of times on dkos that a diarist has asked in response to a question, "Have you bothered to read the diary" is in the thousands.

            "Ignoring a comment completely" is allowed. Many diarists ignore comments. One is not obliged to indulge everyone. Your demand to be indulged apparently reflects your perception of your status in respect to Ray's. You seem to think you must be answered, as if he must answer to you.

            "Saying the comment is irrelevant to the main point" is also allowed. Diarists deflect comments like this all the time, because people do tend to frequently bring up arguments which miss the main point. When a diarist has, often, hundreds of responses to read, those who don't read the diary, and bring up issues already answered, or try to raise strawmen or ignore the main point will likely not be high on any diarists list of people to respond to. People who harass a diarist in diary after diary will also be on a short list of people to ignore.

            So, pointing to this chart is not an argument. It is a rather adolescent logical fallacy. And now, having said this, you can giggle and point to N2 on the chart, "claim logical fallacy"!

            This should be an embarrassing ploy on this site, but apparently, this is the level to which discourse has sunk.  I understand you don't like Ray's diaries, and you want him to answer each and every taunting diatribe made against him, but if you look at this particular diary as an example, he does write several long replies to some of the questions here.

            And before you use your little game on me, I don't always take a stand on Ray's diaries. The atmosphere on the site, in my own personal experience since December, has become nearly unbearable for me (the the infinite delight of some individuals here). People judge each other based on which pack one runs with, and one's actual point of view is often less important than whether one fits into the groupthink of different camps. I've had several instances where a group simply could not abide my individual point of view, and have made it very personal, despite my being mostly in agreement on issues. So I don't do a lot of recs lately, nor do I receive many. I have few friends. In short, I'm not a sycophant of Ray's, or of any group here.

            And from that perspective, I think this bingo game is particularly pubescent.

             

            "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

            by ZhenRen on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 01:25:48 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Thank you for writing that. It seems to be a very (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ZhenRen, Unca Joseph, joegoldstein

              well thought-out and intelligent analysis of the mockery and harassment.  I think it jumps out as such to honest commenters.  And yes, it is a sad display of childish behavior in a site that's purportedly for intelligent adults.

              I don't know what this tiny group (the same in diary after diary after diary) are trying to accomplish with this behavior, but it is obvious they are making themselves look bad.

              As you correctly mentioned, there is no need for me to engage once people stoop to that level.

              And yes, it is truly amazing that these folks are able to engage in this type of behavior with total impunity.  

              •  There's no appreciable difference (3+ / 0-)

                between people citing the Bingo Game and your own continual referencing of the "The 15 Rules of Web Disruption."

                The former is obviously a satirical parody of the latter.

                Nothing human is alien to me.

                by WB Reeves on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:32:19 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I think there is a difference (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  serendipityisabitch, Hey338Too

                  The Bingo card doesn't routinely accompany a handwave about "sockpuppets, trolls and hacks," and it encourages specificity.

                  Many TUs wonder how to respond to some of Ray's behavioral patterns. I can't say that Bingo is the answer, but at least it is focused and succinct.

                  "I am not sure how we got here, but then, I am not really sure where we are." -Susan from 29

                  by HudsonValleyMark on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 06:07:16 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  O5 n/t (1+ / 1-)
                Recommended by:
                Hey338Too
                Hidden by:
                ZhenRen

                At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

                by serendipityisabitch on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 03:56:11 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Nonsense (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Ray Pensador, Unca Joseph

                  I answered out of my conscience, he replied to me.

                  I think, frankly, that people need to start to think about hide rating this game. It is beyond insulting, is trolling behavior, has no interest in fair dialogue, and is it self a logical fallacy.

                  Prove he "waited for someone to put down user and rec reply". This is ad hominem, and is hide ratable. If you can't prove this is true, I may hide rate.

                  "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                  by ZhenRen on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 04:06:00 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  HR abuse noted /nt (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    serendipityisabitch, fcvaguy

                    Looking through the bent backed tulips, To see how the other half lives, Looking through a glass onion - John Lennon and Paul McCartney

                    by Hey338Too on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 04:26:06 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Nonsense (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Ray Pensador, Unca Joseph

                      All insults are hide ratable. I know this teenage level game is fun for you all, but it is essentially ad hominem, and is one of the basest, most dickish devices I have seen in my years here. Its intention is only to ridicule, not engage in discussion.  It is disruptive, it makes no argument, it tries to fit any response into a tidy little board game. It reduces discussion to the level of idiocy. It destroys discussion, and is extremely disrespectful.

                      You've all had your fun, now go to your rooms, and let the adults have a discussion.

                      Stop this inanity. Imagine entire dkos discussions appearing like this:

                      Comment: H3

                      Reply: G10

                      Rejoinder: L6

                      Comment: C8

                      "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                      by ZhenRen on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 05:44:51 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  nonsense (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        serendipityisabitch, Hey338Too

                        It isn't "essentially ad hominem"; it does make an argument; it isn't applicable to any response; it doesn't destroy discussion.

                        You've all had your fun, now go to your rooms, and let the adults have a discussion.
                        You think that is less insulting than "B5"?

                        For that matter, you think it is "fun" to try to figure out how to respond to Ray's patterns of bad behavior?

                        "I am not sure how we got here, but then, I am not really sure where we are." -Susan from 29

                        by HudsonValleyMark on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 06:21:59 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  It is meant for one purpose (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Unca Joseph

                          Ridicule. If you can't admit that, you're probably being self-deceptive. A common predicament of the human condition.

                          "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                          by ZhenRen on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 08:44:02 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  meh (3+ / 0-)

                            Someone made a comment about the use of "enemies list"; Ray responded with a personalized conjecture about a "tiny group" and their likely responses to hypothetical posts about puppies and kittens; I noted that his comment evaded the point and pointed to evidence that it is substantively false; and now I stand accused of merciless ad hominem mockery.

                            Yes, I think that is ridiculous. But that doesn't mean that I challenge it for the "one purpose" of "ridicule." Similarly, since Ray's comment remains evasive and false, your unsupported speculation about the purpose of my response seems... well, yes, ad hominem.

                            "I am not sure how we got here, but then, I am not really sure where we are." -Susan from 29

                            by HudsonValleyMark on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 09:22:26 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Oh, so that's it? (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unca Joseph

                            Your feelings are hurt? What are you, the "evade the point" police? Why do you place so much priority in policing Ray's commentary? Isn't there a big world out there for you to explore, rather than act as enforcers in Ray's diaries? Are you all on the maturity level of children?

                            Frankly, I think you are the ones avoiding discussion, interrupting discussion, forcing your own rules on the discussion, constantly trying to criticize for the purpose of trying to manipulate Ray into a constant mode of defensiveness, and when he sees the obvious pattern, and deals with this in the only sane way possible, you come up with this taunting game.

                            Now, I wrote a long rebuttal somewhere on the thread, and if you want to debate this, read it, and answer the comment point by point. Otherwise, you're just inserting a baseless form of self-justified authority here, making accusations, while not following your own dictums.

                            Your constant ankle biting is intentionally disruptive of the community.

                            "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                            by ZhenRen on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 10:00:31 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  ? (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Hey338Too
                            Your feelings are hurt?
                            Talking about me instead of substance is the point of "ad hominem."
                            Now, I wrote a long rebuttal somewhere on the thread,
                            but since you haven't responded substantively to my short comments, you aren't in a position credibly to demand that I waste time composing a much longer response to yours. Fling all the pots you like, however.

                            "I am not sure how we got here, but then, I am not really sure where we are." -Susan from 29

                            by HudsonValleyMark on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 11:40:08 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Nonsense (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unca Joseph

                            First, I did respond to your comment.

                            And as to the issue of the game being made for purposes of ridicule, I answered that at length, and I think it serves well. To ignore that, as if it hadn't been made, is avoiding the discussion. My long comment precedes your comment and it addresses the issues you raised. Nice try at avoidance. If you want to be part of a discussion, it helps to read what has already been covered.

                            It is self-serving to ignore what has been stated already, and then expecting people to pay attention to you, as if you believe (consciously or not) you have some sort of status, or your comments have greater validity, above those to whom you address your criticisms.

                            Many of you are very good at coming up with complaints, but I see some of you violating your own dictums.

                            And as to that comment Ray made about the "tiny group", that comment wasn't addressed to you, was it? Are you self-identifying with the tiny group? That's why I wondered if it personally bothered you.

                            This is arrogant behavior.

                            I predict you'll ignore most of my comment, address one small part, and then act as if you've not avoided what I've said.

                            No, the bingo game is a blatant form of ridicule, and is ad hominem. I suggest you stop playing games here.

                            "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                            by ZhenRen on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 02:29:23 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  again (4+ / 0-)

                            Since Ray's comment remains evasive and false, your unsupported speculation about the purpose of my response is an ad hominem and a non sequitur. I don't dispute your capacity to churn out paragraphs. But Ray's comment isn't materially different from 'Oh, it doesn't matter what I say, some bad people will criticize it regardless.' Great, lovely.

                            And as to that comment Ray made about the "tiny group", that comment wasn't addressed to you, was it? Are you self-identifying with the tiny group?
                            Ray never names the "tiny group." It's a mechanism (not necessarily conscious) for fostering in-group solidarity against Enemies Among Us. It tends to work better when no enemies actually are named, because it appeals to our sense of generalized threat rather than our capacity to evaluate specific propositions.

                            "I am not sure how we got here, but then, I am not really sure where we are." -Susan from 29

                            by HudsonValleyMark on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 04:01:30 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Nonsense (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unca Joseph

                            This isn't taking place in a vacuum. I answered this in my longer statement about this. And you're forgetting that Ray does engage with people who seem to be sincere. He has a right to decide, for himself, who is an honest actor, and who is just attacking. Opinions will differ. You're trying to force a form of authority on him, as if he MUST answer in a form you demand. You demand he behave according to your notions, that he defer to your antics, that he give you attention, and if he doesn't, or he ignores your fits of indignation, you attack, from diary to diary.

                            Frankly, I see most of you, in terms of types of personas, as rule following authoritarian types. The kind who would turn people in to the school principle. "He smoked in the bathroom!" "He said a naughty word!" "He wasn't sick, I saw him playing at the park with his other friends who cut class!" "Why did he get an A, like I did, when he turned in his report late!?" "I saw him copy answers!"

                            IN this case, it's more along the lines of, "He said there were a tiny group of people who bother him, and now he won't answer my superior, most worthy response!"

                            "He's calling for revolution, that's naughty, and he won't answer me."

                            "He didn't make the proper attribution!" (He shouldn't have done that, but it follows the pattern)

                            "He supports non-hierarchical organiation, and I criticised that, and he won't answer, or answers by referring me to his diary!"

                            Basically, its a lot of foot stomping, and temper tantrums by a bunch of authoritarian personalities who are outraged at being ignored, lumped into a group, and whose authority is being rejected by someone perceived as not following rules. It drives you out of you mind.

                            Its become so common many have been ignoring you, as if your posts are just an object on the freeway to avoid as people drive by. They see your posts and think, "oh that again" and pass you by.

                            And from what I observe (its laughably apparent) the same actors come in repeatedly and frequently to argue the same points, or variations thereof, trying to nitpick Ray to death. Recently, one of the group checked his use of a photo, finding he left out an attribution. Nothing wrong with pointing that out, except that if it had been anyone else who'd pointed out the error, it wouldn't have drawn attention.  

                            Frankly, if I were Ray, I'd likely be a bit more direct. He is patient. He has as much right as anyone to ignore people, as does any diarist. Some who have been part of this group of critics have ignored me completely in a recent diary. They don't like my answers. Would you like me to name the "tiny group"? I've nothing to lose, while Ray wisely avoids your goading to name people.

                            Maybe we should come up with a bingo game that lists your repetitive criticisms. The we can all start to communicate with game-playing.

                            One of them would be

                            "Responded with stupid bingo game".
                            Or,
                            "Indignant fit over being ignored."
                            Or,
                            "Takes offense of mention of unnamed group of harassing critics"
                            Or,
                            "Another 'How dare he' response".
                            Or,
                            "He isn't following the rules!"
                            Following is my earlier response, and I've bolded the applicable points
                            This bingo game you've all been gleefully (3+ / 0-)

                            using to mercilessly mock the diarist is meaningless as a rebuttal. I've no doubt just about anything stated could be found somewhere on that board.

                            In terms of the soundness of referring to this list as an answer to an argument, it is completely baseless and illogical. For example, one entry is "answering a question that hasn't been asked." A diarist is not bound to answer all questions posed, and not bound to refrain from making statements which weren't asked for. If questions seem to be insincere, or already answered, or a form of harassment, the only way to effectively deal with that is to ignore it in most cases.

                            The second item, "answer by quoting from the diary" is done by diarists all the time. The number of times on dkos that a diarist has asked in response to a question, "Have you bothered to read the diary" is in the thousands.

                            "Ignoring a comment completely" is allowed. Many diarists ignore comments. One is not obliged to indulge everyone. Your demand to be indulged apparently reflects your perception of your status in respect to Ray's. You seem to think you must be answered, as if he must answer to you.

                            "Saying the comment is irrelevant to the main point" is also allowed. Diarists deflect comments like this all the time, because people do tend to frequently bring up arguments which miss the main point. When a diarist has, often, hundreds of responses to read, those who don't read the diary, and bring up issues already answered, or try to raise strawmen or ignore the main point will likely not be high on any diarists list of people to respond to. People who harass a diarist in diary after diary will also be on a short list of people to ignore.

                            So, pointing to this chart is not an argument. It is a rather adolescent logical fallacy. And now, having said this, you can giggle and point to N2 on the chart, "claim logical fallacy"!

                            This should be an embarrassing ploy on this site, but apparently, this is the level to which discourse has sunk. I understand you don't like Ray's diaries, and you want him to answer each and every taunting diatribe made against him, but if you look at this particular diary as an example, he does write several long replies to some of the questions here.

                            And before you use your little game on me, I don't always take a stand on Ray's diaries. The atmosphere on the site, in my own personal experience since December, has become nearly unbearable for me (the the infinite delight of some individuals here). People judge each other based on which pack one runs with, and one's actual point of view is often less important than whether one fits into the groupthink of different camps. I've had several instances where a group simply could not abide my individual point of view, and have made it very personal, despite my being mostly in agreement on issues. So I don't do a lot of recs lately, nor do I receive many. I have few friends. In short, I'm not a sycophant of Ray's, or of any group here.

                            And from that perspective, I think this bingo game is particularly pubescent.

                            "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 01:57:30 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  more ad hom (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Hey338Too

                            Thanks for sharing.

                            "I am not sure how we got here, but then, I am not really sure where we are." -Susan from 29

                            by HudsonValleyMark on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 03:02:14 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Call it what you will (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unca Joseph

                            I think it gets to the issue, and what is really going on, quite well. I'm not here to follow the rules which you require everyone to follow but yourselves.

                            And, it was my pleasure to share it.

                            "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                            by ZhenRen on Sat Jan 25, 2014 at 03:18:00 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                      •  insults are HR'able (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Hey338Too

                        but not when you're engaged with the user.

                        KOS: "Mocking partisans focusing on elections? Even less reason to be on Daily Kos."

                        by fcvaguy on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 05:15:13 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                  •  Zhen I know this upsets you (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    serendipityisabitch, Hey338Too

                    but by what site rule is it hide ratable?

                    If it is, does that mean you'll be hide rating anyone who uses The 15 Rules of Web Disruption in like fashion?

                    Nothing human is alien to me.

                    by WB Reeves on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 04:32:43 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  G2 (3+ / 0-)

                      "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                      by ZhenRen on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 06:10:17 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Are going to hide rate yourself? n/t (2+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        serendipityisabitch, Hey338Too

                        Nothing human is alien to me.

                        by WB Reeves on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:09:33 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                      •  Ooooh. I'm so glad you've decided to play. One (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Hey338Too

                        minor thing you evidently missed, though - the phrases are meant to identify ways of avoiding substantive discussion, not used to avoid substantive discussion.

                        Just thought you'd like to know for the future. ;)

                        At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

                        by serendipityisabitch on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 02:04:49 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  You assumed (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Unca Joseph

                          I was following your rules, and your concept. Odd, that. Seems you missed the irony of the meaning. Figured you would.

                          "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                          by ZhenRen on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 08:40:52 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  My rules? Oh, my dear, those are Ray's rules, (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Hey338Too

                            all neatly set down in one place, about how to avoid answering questions when he doesn't know the answers. I only gathered them together.

                            At least half the future I've been expecting hasn't gotten here yet. Sigh.... (Yes, there's gender bias in my name; no, I wasn't thinking about it when I signed up. My apologies.)

                            by serendipityisabitch on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 08:56:28 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  No, those are your game rules (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unca Joseph

                            of your game, which is a device intended to thrust your spin, your personal attempt to force your twisted, insulting interpretation into a mocking game.

                            And I wrote a good rebuttal up-thread already, which you very likely didn't bother to read, such being the level of your personal integrity.

                            "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                            by ZhenRen on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 09:04:05 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Do you even know how to play bingo? (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            serendipityisabitch

                            Good grief... Here you go

                            Looking through the bent backed tulips, To see how the other half lives, Looking through a glass onion - John Lennon and Paul McCartney

                            by Hey338Too on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 09:16:49 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Please learn to read (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Unca Joseph

                            And you're avoiding the discussion, I've already answered this. Your authoritarianism is showing. It's a stupid game, and I'm playing by my own "rulz".

                            Go back and read my rather long rebuttal, and answer each of its points. Otherwise, you're avoiding discussion.

                            "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                            by ZhenRen on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 09:20:40 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  Walk away. It's not worth it. Let's focus on (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Unca Joseph, ZhenRen, joegoldstein

                    productive discussions.

                    •  Hey, you're avoiding discussion! (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Unca Joseph

                      Again! Just kidding.

                      See, you're doing the right thing by approaching it this way. It's not avoidance, it is the best decision, but hard to stick to. And that's what drives people crazy. They can't draw you into the fight they want to provoke.

                      "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                      by ZhenRen on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 08:48:39 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

            •  ZR I know you have seen diaries when people (4+ / 0-)

              who support Ray simply refer to one of Ray's 15 Rules of disruption rather than respond to the question that is being asked or the point being made.  There is no question that you are treated on a blog the way you treat others.  As for the link, Ray made the over the top complaint that if he wrote about a benign topic like puppies the same tiny group would come in and abuse him.  HudsonValleyMark simply gave a link to a diary where Ray wrote about a benign subject and that didn't happen.  And he referred to Ray's predicted response that "a tiny group" is all that would have concerns about an enemy list.  A lot of the problems in Ray's diaries are because he won't answer substantive questions.  He avoids answering those by claiming the people asking the questions are there to disrupt.  Eventually, if they keep asking, he indicates that they are sock puppets, trolls, etc.  While he is smart enough not to directly use the words he does it by doing things like referring to his "15 Rules".

              Wouldn't it have been easier, and certainly more helpful to the cause, for Ray to have explained why "enemy lists" aren't a bad thing.  Or that they wouldn't worry people.  Instead he claimed the only reason people would complain about "enemy lists" is because a very few people would complain if he wrote about puppies.  Which is a complete refusal on Ray's part to seriously consider the criticisms of his position.  Instead he diverted the topic to his alleged "tiny group".  Clearly the discourse in Ray's diaries generally goes downhill fast.  But Ray's refusal to defend his positions contributes mightily to the problem.

              "Speak the TRUTH, even if your voice shakes."

              by stellaluna on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:30:25 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Suggestion: (3+ / 0-)

                Find another playground to play in. You've made whatever point you had a long time ago. Which comes first, your insults, or his? Maybe he gets tired of the ankle biting. I notice he did answer others who had views about the "enemy lists." Maybe he knows by experience that some individuals must always pathologically have the last word. Maybe he is as fed up with you as you are with him. What makes your experience have priority over his?  These are his diaries, and Markos did come up with the "House Rules" concept that when you are in someone's diary, you're a guest in their home. Seems you all think you can enter his diaries, refuse to take your shoes off at the door, invent games to taunt him with, never stop arguing, work as a kind of tag team (whether intentional or not), and then, the next time he writes another diary, you're all right there again, waiting at the door of his home to be the first to enter and cause more mischief. I wouldn't blame anyone for trying to kick you out of the house. It seems most people are more and more just ignoring you all. So why do this?

                If one knows certain individuals will make a contest of wills out of a discussion, and with near pathological determination continue arguing for days, any normal, sane person would tend to avoid such people in future debate. Perhaps Ray has identified, according to his own experience, which persons want an honest debate, and which are here to rub in their antipathy, essentially harassing him. It is obvious that certain of you are in his diaries fairly consistently.

                He does engage people substantially when they treat him with respect.

                "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                by ZhenRen on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 03:22:11 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  beg pardon? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              serendipityisabitch, Hey338Too
              to mercilessly mock the diarist
              Of course you don't have to engage the substance of my comments, any more than Ray does. But to characterize them as merciless mockery is, umm, a bit rich.

              "I am not sure how we got here, but then, I am not really sure where we are." -Susan from 29

              by HudsonValleyMark on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 05:53:25 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  It is mockery (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Unca Joseph

                If you don't understand that is its primary purpose, I''ll have to reassess my current estimation of your self-honesty.

                "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

                by ZhenRen on Fri Jan 24, 2014 at 08:51:31 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

        •  I think you just made the list. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Hey338Too
      •  But it should not be called and Enemies List, (5+ / 0-)

        nor should it operate like one.  Knowing who the crooks and phonies are is important, but care must be taken to ensure due process, and to target these corporation with peaceful and legal methods.

        Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels, but religion is assuredly the first.

        by StrayCat on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 08:45:59 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I've never advocated targeting wrongdoers (0+ / 0-)

          without due process, and peaceful and legal methods.

          The entity that's doing that right now is the captured U.S. government, having essentially suspended many protections in the Constitution.

          What I and many other activists are advocating for is the rule of law, Constitutional protections, and an end to the wholesale capture of our government by corporate cartels.

          I'm all about the rule of law, due process, and the Constitution.

  •  Ray, not to omit making first strike nuking of (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ray Pensador, StrayCat

    Russia China, or conventional shock and awe in Iran, unthinkable. The US is not just a problem for North America but globally, a rogue nation.

  •  It's the propaganda... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hey338Too, WB Reeves, ZhenRen

    not the specific people.

    What good is an "enemies list" in 2014 if the problem is in 1969 or 2089?

    This "problem" you speak of, Ray, the rich and powerful lording over the working class and struggling has always been with us.
    It's a "feature" of human nature, I fear.

    Is it solvable? To some extent. The problem isn't a specific group of people, it's ALL OF US.

    What is the Primary Mission of an American?

    Basically, to get money.

    Think about it. I don't care if you're a homeless drug addict on skid row or Chief of Thoracic Surgery at Johns Hopkins, you both share the need for money. It's a design feature of the system!

    It's this greed which is destroying us. Humans ARE greedy. So we need, as a society, to suppress, not intensify this.

    Yet, Capitalism is all about greed.

    It's the system, Ray, not individuals. I like you. I like your ideas. I rec and tip most of your diaries and I follow you. But correlating and "enemies list" is not the solution to this problem.

    A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

    by joegoldstein on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 07:16:12 AM PST

    •  Enemies lists are generally bad, and subject to (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      IowaBiologist, joegoldstein

      abuse and limited thinking.  However, there must be an accurate identification of those whose purpose and actions reduce our liberty, violate the Constitution and create unwarranted economic risk for secret gain.  There is no harm in saying that Bank of America is an enemy of a free society, and is engaged in criminal actions.  And we can say the same of Citibank, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, Wells Fargo and others.  But, the question is, what do we do about them.  Mme. Defarge's knitting led to bloody injustice, and other limitations on progress during the French Revolution.  And there was no appeal from those coded scarves.  But we progressives do not have the power to do harm to the people who would further enable the police/corporate state, so describing the kinds of harm done, and identifying those doing the harm is fine.  But if we succeed in saving the Constitution and democratic government, the we must remember the actions that were harmful, but forget the individuals.

      Patriotism may be the last refuge of scoundrels, but religion is assuredly the first.

      by StrayCat on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 09:00:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I would, personally, be much more comfortable... (3+ / 0-)

        with a "money flow chart" SHOWING people exactly how money flows through the system.

        I believe that Occupy had some project like this at one time or another. Perhaps one of our resident experts on the Occupy movement could comment on this?

        I don't think demonizing individuals or companies is particularly useful because I think it undermines what we are trying to actually accomplish.

        I'm of the opinion that you cannot run a "human-friendly, planet friendly" company in a competitive manner in the current Capitalist system. Almost all companies externalize costs and this is part of the problem! When a CFO makes a decision that it's more cost effective to dump waste and take the fine than to dispose of it properly...and he'll be FIRED if he makes any other decision because, legally, he has to provide profit for his shareholders, then something in the system is FUCKED UP!

        The system has to change. Targeting individuals is just not effective, IMHO, and can actually cause us grave harm.

        I don't want to fight with anyone, I want to win them over to our side.

        A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

        by joegoldstein on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:23:32 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Let me ask you something: (0+ / 0-)

          What do you think of the fact that corporations like Bank of America, and others work closely with DHS, FBI, and other national security organizations to illegally build very detailed dossiers on social justice activists and organizations in order to devise strategies to neutralize their efforts?

          Is it okay for the public to know that a bank, a business is engaged in this type of illegal behavior, a very dangerous behavior?

          Should that information be widely available so people can form an accurate opinion of such company?

          About ALEC, are you okay with the fact that they take money from corporations in order to pass cookie-cutter legislation hostile to workers, to civil and constitutional rights, to environmental protection, across the entire nation?

          Voter suppression laws, stand-your-ground (license to kill) laws, legislation against women's rights...

          Should not the public know about what this organization does, and who its funders are?

          Wasn't it helpful to know about all the shadowy organizations funded by the Koch brothers in order to subvert democracy, and about the hundreds of millions of dollars spent by them, and about where exactly that money is going?

          Isn't it helpful to know that The Third Way is a corporatist cartel made up mainly of Wall Street insiders, and that they are playing a big part in the corruption of the Democratic party?

          Isn't it helpful to know who is behind that organization, where do they get their funding from, who are the main players?

          You can't have a social justice movement that's effective without research, without information, without being able to connect the dots.

          It would be totally absurd to argue that ignorance about these things is power; it is not.  Information is power.

          •  I see your point here Ray (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Unca Joseph

            I think its just the term "enemies list" that has a bad ring to it. Otherwise, sure, we need to keep an eye on these corporations, track their behavior, and expose them if we can. Occupy did all sorts of direct action against banks. The Global Justice Movement tried to shut down the meetings of various organizations they have identified as promoting unfair labor practices and economic policies.

            The movement is characterized by the massive citizen protests and alternative summits which have, for the last decade, accompanied most meetings of the G8, World Trade Organization, International Monetary Fund, and World Bank. The movement came to the attention of many in the US when activists successfully used protests to temporarily shut down the 1999 WTO Ministerial in Seattle. This represented, however, just one of a series of massive Global Justice protests that have included protests at the 1988 World Bank/IMF meetings in Germany,[8] "IMF riots" beginning in Lima in 1975, over cuts in the social safety-net presided over by IMF and other international organizations, and spreading through the world,[9][10] and "water wars" in Bolivia and South Africa.[11]http://en.wikipedia.org/...
            And a labor strike is certainly targeting corporations and employers.

            But "enemies list" just may not be the right term. Sounds too Orwellian, or something. Let's face it, the Democratic party insiders certainly have their enemies lists. It was just revealed that Hillary had an enemies list. I remember Obama had some sort of revealed "payback list" or enemies list after he won the nom.

            But it sounds like the kind of thing corrupt officials might do, for the wrong reasons, where as you are doing it for the right reasons. Maybe just use different terms.

            Most of the naysayers here seem to dislike direct action, but few seem to come right out and honestly admit it.

            "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

            by ZhenRen on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 03:58:10 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  I don't think we need an "enemies list". (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ZhenRen

            I also don't think the issue is a lack of knowledge, though I'm certainly never opposed to good quality, factual reporting on what is going on regarding all of the issues you bring forth.

            I think that pretty much everyone in the country, if not the world, knows that the banks and Wall Street crashed the economy back in '08, got bailed out, no one went to jail and...

            no one has any idea what to do about it. What have the Democrats offered? The Republicans? Anyone? Nothing from those with power and money, to be sure.

            OWS was a spasm of a reaction to that. It won't be the last.

            I think, considering the dire nature of the situation (you don't even bring up the two most important issues, IMHO, Anthropogenic Global Climate Change and peak resources), something HAS TO BE DONE.

            Unfortunately, I share ZhenRen's despair that such a conversation is simply not possible here. I'm not sure it's possible here in the US at all, given the absolute demonization of anything other than Capitalism.

            I'm not against you, Ray, I'm truly in a deep state of despair over all of this.

            A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

            by joegoldstein on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 05:42:01 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  I've skimmed many of the answers here (4+ / 0-)

      and seen the general direction of discussion, and by all I've read, you've written the most cogent statement of all:

      It's the system, Ray, not individuals.
      If the system, as it is, remains in place, it won't matter who you round up and "prosecute" because the system is what allows the people who gain control of the central state to dominate the rest of us. In a real revolution, most of the wealthy would probably flee to a capitalist or fascist regime.

      The system must be changed, and that's what people need to start thinking about. We need to envision how we want society to be shaped and organized. What kind of socioeconomic and sociopoltical organization do we think is best? If we're just going to keep the old system, with some reforms, it won't be enough, because the foundations of the system are faulty, and designed to serve the rich.

      This is why I'm staying out of the discussions going on elsewhere in this thread. I don't know if dkos is ready for a deeper exploration of this, but that is the real discussion that needs to take place.

      "The political arena leaves one no alternative, one must either be a dunce or a rogue." Emma Goldman, Anarchism and Other Essays

      by ZhenRen on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 11:38:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Thank you, my friend. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ZhenRen

        One of the reasons I've been rather reserved in my commenting of late is due to the same feelings you have.

        The conversation we need to be having just isn't occurring. It is in dribs and drabs, and I think a lot of people "get it"...but it's still a tough row to hoe.

        A society consisting of the sum of its vanity and greed is not a society at all but a state of war. - Lewis Lapham

        by joegoldstein on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 02:01:22 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I first heard the expression "Enemies List" (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hey338Too, serendipityisabitch, bwren

    on the Nixon tapes; an unfortunate association for this diary.

    I also am uneasy about whether the statute of limitations will be respected at payback time. There are some faint echos of bills of attainder in this diary.

    I'd rather see Truth and Reconciliation commissions than drumhead trials.  I've personally assisted attacks on very bad people that resulted in bitter civil court suits and criminal charges, and it wasn't as much fun as it sounds.

    http://www.dailykos.com/...

    http://www.dailykos.com/...

    The early commenters in this diary who denigrate the Constitution completely lose me.

    Ray, I am one of many who feel your heart is in the right place. I remember the other night when I was posting a diary at 1 am, and by gosh, you were posting one then too, so I respect your dedication also.

    That is why I hope you will take this and the other comments with sincere misgivings about today's diary in the spirit they were written.

    I remember you used to have to field a lot of BS in the comments on your diaries, but I think that day has largely passed, at least for the current bunch of comments.

    Maybe you'll even agree to allow me to Rec one of your diaries someday.

    “The answer must be, I think, that beauty and grace are performed whether or not we will or sense them. The least we can do is try to be there.” ― Annie Dillard, Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

    by 6412093 on Thu Jan 23, 2014 at 10:37:20 AM PST

  •  My short experience with organizing (0+ / 0-)

    suggests that knowing your enemy can be extremely important, and anyone who has read Lao Tzu's Art of War should realize that the better one knows the enemy the greater the chance of success without even having to fight the pitched battle. The idea of "enemy lists" is somewhat disconcerting, considering that I may be on a few people's enemy lists by now... Non-violent social and political movements are best motivated by standing for something as opposed to fighting against something, though the two are not mutually exclusive.

    We are currently organizing towards a big labor rally here in Pittsburgh for March 3. In meeting with some committed students from a number of local colleges I learned that many of the college presidents are also on the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center BoD. So open letters to these Presidents will be circulated on those campuses to generate support among the students at these colleges, with the goal getting more bodies in front of the Steel Tower in downtown Pittsburgh for the rally. This is an instance where knowing your enemy and using publicly available information can be used to generate support for your cause.

    Lists by themselves are relatively benign, the harm can occur when they are used to unjustly harm those on the list. If your list is publicly available, those who feel they are unjustly included among the 'enemies' can argue that their behavior does not merit inclusion on the list, or can change their behavior in a manner to disassociate themselves from others on the list. I believe this is what has happened to ALEC. Many companies were more than happy to associate with ALEC until the organization was exposed, and they decided that the benefits membership were likely outweighed by the possible costs to their business.

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