Morality And The Occupy Movement

This is a discussion of the role of morality in the Occupy Movement.

For those who wonder what exactly the Occupy Movement is demanding, look no further. The answer is simple – a new moral agenda, a moral democracy that radically opposes and hopes to alter the role of government and corporations, that is, the selfish, small-minded autocracy that has ruled to date, and that has seriously hindered and interfered with the lives and progress of Americans.

It’s a tall order, but the revolution has begun and is sweeping under its wings not only the government we now have in place in this country, but those on Wall Street and around the globe for whom the buck, rather than human interests, have taken priority. There is a new world order on the rise, and it will encompass even the small minds of our politicians.

Morality, as you may have gathered, is very different for progressives than it is for conservatives. We progressives have a head start in what it means to be moral. We care more about people’s needs, their jobs, education, health care, pensions and futures. We will not, for example, support an agenda that aims to provide tax breaks for the rich at the expense of most Americans.

So, if you think anarchy is a part of this vision, you would also be right. Anarchy is. Anarchy means disrupting the current world order and that is what is required for a new moral order to move forward. Dadaism came before Surrealism. So must the Occupy Movement disrupt before America blossoms.

However, as you may have also gathered, the disruption of the current social and political order has all along in the Occupy movement in America been simultaneous to the presentation of peaceful and constructive ideas and approaches. It is helpful to provide a library of truth to people, as was done in Zuccotti Park. It is helpful to have all members of a society, however big or small, working together toward common goals that benefit everyone. This was also true of Zuccotti Park. It is helpful to have medical care and support systems of every variety for the people of a nation, again, as Zuccotti Park demonstrated.

The Occupy Movement has changed the terms of the debate over who owns public space in America. Artists, union workers, the retired, the young, middle-aged and unemployed all have a say in this debate and are making themselves heard loud and clear across America. If you live here, you are a part of this debate and have a say in it. If you are a citizen of this country, you have a right to question your government’s failings and present a new agenda to the powers that be. Occupy, discuss, debate, transform; these are all words that reflect what is happening in the Occupy Movement. Americans can join the revolution of consciousness that it represents or become part of a silent minority.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

T.Maher December 31, 2011 at 07:42 PM
Twenty-nine years later, the American welfare state was still relatively small, consuming only 1.2 percent of U.S. gross domestic product (GDP). The American family was also still intact, with 93 percent of children born into stable families. But then, in 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson’s War on Poverty happened. Forty-five years and $16 trillion later, thanks to big government, poverty is winning. Thanks to over $900 billion a year (over 5 percent of GDP) of spending on over 70 means-tested welfare programs spread over 13 government agencies, more than 40 million Americans currently receive food stamps, poverty is higher today than it was in the 1970s, and 40 percent of all children are born outside of marriage. We can say that it is and has been a failed policy- can anyone say that 16 trillion dollars was well spent? more money stolen from the people in the form of taxes to throw away on yet more gov't. programs would be more of the same failure- wouldn't that money have been better off in the pockets of those earned it? actually , it doesn't matter if it would be better or not- it belongs to the people tha worked for it, and to their families-period
MARIO SICARI December 31, 2011 at 08:51 PM
@ Ridgewood Mom...Please dont quote Paul Krugman in a debate. he is a Keynesian economist, and Maynard Keynes studies of Government intervention doesnt work as we have just witnessed, Paul Krugman speaks of excesses by the Financial industry, doe she speak of th ePROPER regulation which should ahve been adopted to prevent the Financial Industry Excesses??? Does he criticize MR Greenspan and MR Clinton on passage of the Commodities Futures Modernizations Act...does anyone on OWS know aht th eLegislature it and what it did and that it was passed in 2000??? No my dear on the contrary he is in part, part of the problem, he comes up with his masterful books and antidotes after the crisis already occurred...anothre MONDAY MORNING I shoulda coulda woulda...
Ridgewood Mom December 31, 2011 at 09:48 PM
I wouldn't try to claim authority for, not discount, Krugman on the basis of Keynes. I just think that Krugman had a good point there that was worth quoting there. And one goes along with the perspective of other respected economists (I have also mentioned Sachs and Stiglitz in this discussion, who surely concur). Is there something in that Krugman quote that you disagree with? Krugman (and Sachs and Stiglitz) certainly speaks in favor of regulation. Do you consider the sort of regulation that he would favor to be the wrong sort of regulation? What would you consider to be the proper sort of regulation? I think that it is very difficult to meaningfully separate government from big business when determining responsibility. The two are birds of a feather, and I think that is the essence of the problem. http://www.geke.us/VennDiagrams.html The whole private vs public sector argument is just a nonsensical distraction for the little people.
Ridgewood Mom December 31, 2011 at 10:13 PM
I think that you and I can agree that unemployment is one of the biggest problems in our country right now. People need to "get jobs." The difference in our perspective seems to be that you see large scale unemployment as being the result of some sort of inherent vagrancy, and I see it as being quite obviously related to the many things that have gone wrong in our economy of late. Housing bubbles, banking crises, etc. and lack of government regulation. Correct me if I'm putting words in your mouth. I see helping the unemployed to become employed as being a sensible investment for all of us, and the biggest part of the key to getting the flailing economy back on track. As I see it, your position is one that will further increase unemployment and, thus, the number of people looking to sleep on your front porch, use your toilet, eat your food and take away from your hard earned paycheck. I can't speak for Occupy Wall Street, because I am honestly not part of it. What I said was positive about the Occupy Wall Street movement is that it has inspired discussion about inequity, which is a necessary prerequisite to improving upon unemployment and thus fixing the economy. If it hadn't been for Occupy Wall street, you and I wouldn't be having this discussion. If you would like to counter protest, then I would suggest you consider the PR that you are giving to the occupy movement and take mum as your word. Happy New Year to you too.
Suzanne Troya August 12, 2012 at 03:45 AM
Wow! I'm reading these comments as I'm trying to understad how this country is in the shape it's in, and Mario, in reading your comments, you've provided clarity!


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