Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Monday, October 10, 2011, 10:26 AM
After the housing crash, ensuing political gridlock in Washington, unemployment / underemployment stuck at high levels and no evidence of any solution or vision out of this economic quagmire in sight, the “left” seems to have created their own “Tea Party” but frankly few outside the movement seem to understand what it’s all about. The NYC General Assembly (their name) has been mocked in the media and criticized for having no clear message.
Perhaps that’s the point.
I took a stroll around “Liberty Park” on Saturday morning to get a sense of what it was all about. I’m still not clear but I find this process of organizing fascinating. There’s a great podcast on NPR’s Planet Money that tries to find answers.
It’s amazingly quiet. No yelling or cheering – people are merely holding signs for passersby to read. The police force all pedestrians to keep walking when taking photos. The protesters aren’t allowed to use bullhorns so “facilitators” lead the speech and the crowd repeats it so all can hear. More insights on the NPR podcast.
As the OWS flier I was given says:
No list of demands…
This occupation is first about participation…
And it’s spreading. Seattle, San Francisco, Austin, Los Angeles, Boston…
Check out the photos I took in the renamed “Liberty Square” – love the messaging. My favorite was “Sharpie on cardboard, typeface of the desperate.”
Click each to expand: