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Forum Post: Here are a few questions that have NOT YET been answered definitively on this forum (as far as I know). Help me out here. . .

Posted 1 year ago on Jan. 2, 2013, 3:25 a.m. EST by therising (6643)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Note: I think the essential question below needs to be resolved in general. I hope we continue this discussion and begin to convince each other one way or the other because it is a division that seems to be holding us, the 99% (including activists), back and preventing much needed unity. Once we realize that the clock is ticking and we new to get past our differences on the topic below, we'll be on the same page and we can begin to make decisions from a position of unified strength instead of making demands from a position of divided weakness.

We gotta somehow get past this sticking point:

Can we evict corporatists who have hijacked our great republic thereby restoring it AND transform our economy simultaneously? Are the two compatible?

Do we need to scrap the great political system developed by the founders in order to transform our economic system? Can't we RESTORE our republic instead while still changing economic system?

I think this is one hell of a great country and there's no need to throw the baby out with the bathwater. Yes, radical change is necessary in our economy and we need to check corporate power by restoring power to the people through relentless massive nonviolent direct action. But does that require we scrap the great political system developed by founders?

Assume we take care of the problems discussed in the award winning films "Inside Job" and "Why We Fight". Assume we take care of transforming our mindset. Assume we check corporate power as described in the award winning film "The Corporation. Assume we enact effective laws that successfully remove the influence of money on our political system. Glass Steagall restored. Corporate personhood ended. Citizens United overturned, etc. Do we still need to scrap the system designed by founders? Can't we change / transform economic system without scrapping the original political system described by the founders?

I'm sure we can build a better economic system, but why scrap the political one, the version the founders came up with. Do we have something we're sure will work better?

Fuck capitalism. I could take it or leave it. I have no problem scrapping that because I'm sure we can do better on that front.

NOTE 1 - Some have called my suggestion that we can restore our republic "timid". If you call the recommendations at the following link timid then I stand guilty as charged! :) http://occupywallst.org/forum/breaking-news-hijacking-occurring-every-day-in-the/ --- this recommended action certainly isn't an end all be all but it would get the corporate foot off our neck long enough to give us the breathing room to plan and bring even more fundamental transformation. NOTE 2 - I think Chis Hedges was right here when he said that Occupy supporters / participants are the true patriots because they want to RESTORE the rule of law. (see this great short interview on national TV where Hedges sets interviewer straight: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MAhHPIuTQ5k&feature=youtube_gdata_player )

NOTE 3 - I am certainly willing to scrap our political system too. I just haven't been convinced we have a better alternative on that. I have been convinced on the economic front, just not the political one. I am certainly willing to do more research and learn more about alternatives on the political front. Just looking for some big picture perspectives and some recommendations on books / links that really show the viable alternatives. Just started the book "Two Cheers for Anarchism" by James Scott (summary here http://press.princeton.edu/titles/9816.html ). I'm open to new ideas. Just not yet convinced. I'm a born skeptic.

64 Comments

64 Comments


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[-] 4 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

First we need an open, free, truthful and comprehensive News Media!

There's nothing we can do to improve, reform or reverse 1% malfeasance, usurpation and entrenchment when the public is openly propagandized by 1% owned MSM, Fox Lies and 24/7/365/every city RW Hate & Lie radio; resulting in electoral disengagement, apathy, and belief in FEMA Death Camps, Kenyan Presidents, and evil spirits.

Not anything big.

And they know it. It's us, the clueless masses, who don't.

[-] 2 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Here's my recommendation on that front. I think this can have more impact than we realize. WE HAVE THE POWER (using direct action and web in tandem):  http://occupywallst.org/forum/we-dont-see-the-power-we-have-in-our-hands-to-tran/

[-] 2 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

I am an optimist and still an idealist, and it nurtures my hope.

But there are certain realities that cannot go unaddressed, both good and bad.

One is you don't show up laggardly late to the game and bitch about the ball, or score, or rules of the game.

We have to be much smarter.

[-] 3 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Look what these folks did! http://occupywallst.org/forum/this-is-fuckin-awesome/ . They turned their economy around and so can we! Amazing.

[-] 2 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

I'm all for going Icelandic (Medieval) and national on Banksters and financial institutions, and I'd include all Big $-Big Biz economic terrorists plundering this country and evading any responsibility.

I was big on promoting the Iceland solution several months ago. But they don't have a country and society as complicated as ours, but it's still a guiding star we should navigate by.

Information is the key.

[-] 2 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Damn straight. We can do this. See video at top of the article at that link if you haven't already. Inspiring.

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

It's Class War!

They're stealing our knowledge.

Most of us don't even know who the enemy is.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Seems though that we have a clear path to victory if you watch video at top of the first link on this post http://occupywallst.org/forum/this-is-fuckin-awesome/

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

What could it hurt to list all the dissidents who want to destroy and prosecute the current and corrupt central power structure in the richest and most powerful country in the world, EVER!!??

What could possibly go wrong??

and if nothing did go wrong

Who would we send it to??

Look, even the Nazis relied on a gullible public to attain power, without that, WW-2 could have been averted.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Not sure what you're getting at?

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

We have to be smarter.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

In what way?

[-] 2 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

We dodged a bullet (a dirty bomb) by reelecting Obama. The powers that be (Nazis) can wait for another day. They can wait to soften us up. From Nixon to W they have grown increasingly extreme, increasingly devious, increasingly careful. The rest of the world is already very nervous about us!

Not good that you have to ask, we're not exactly alone...

They would like nothing better than a definitive list of dissidents to work on rather than general populations.

Think man!

[-] 2 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

I hear you. And I understand that Occupy has a great advantage by being decentralized. To the authorities, it's a million headed nonviolent hydra and they're even more panicked than they show. Hence the scurrying behind the scenes to do propaganda and enact laws that will make it easier to round up peaceful protesters and demonize the, in the future.

[-] 3 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

We are rats in a cage, crabs in a pot, people herded like cattle; yet we're still a threat to the Ranch Owners.

Nothing like a little gun play to keep us distracted, at each others throats, fighting the class war against each other, for the enemy 1%.

Unity is their number one fear.

[-] -3 points by aville (-678) 1 year ago

try doing research on obama, his background, his " friends" and alliances.

[-] -3 points by aville (-678) 1 year ago

you placed yourself ( the country) right on target for total destruction with the "election" of obama.

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

Can you explain this statement?

[+] -5 points by davmart (-15) 1 year ago

The rest of the World is only nervous about our constant spending dummy and it is only going to increase by the current porch monkey in charge

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

NO!

YOU!!!!

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 1 year ago

The world wants us to spend what is necessary to stimulate a strong recovery.

Only you right wing wacko, tea party extremists from the red "dumasfuckistan" states care about spending, deficits, & debt, because their goal is to cut pgms that benefit the 99%.

Greedy, selfish, traitorous bastards to their own class!

[Removed]

[Deleted]

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2091) from Cornelius, OR 1 year ago

Try and catch Randi Rhodes when she returns from vacation:

http://www.randirhodes.com/main.html

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (28456) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Any system can be GR8 or Horrid. The system we have - The Constitution - can be awesome. But like any - ANY - system it can be hijacked.

Any system of - by - for - the people can be the pinnacle of achievement.

The secret is holding true to the values of good/healthy for ALL.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Exactly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28456) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

So let's get to holding true to the values of good/healthy for ALL.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

How do we spread that word beyond the choir DKA?

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (28456) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Continue as we are - be persistent. Everyday presents new opportunities. Thing is - to never give-up. I know you have heard it before - you will continue to hear it from me - keep information in circulation - share it out. The information in circulation - kept in circulation - will bring more and more individuals to moments of self discovery - awareness - awakening. The tough part will be for all of us to keep faith and keep on.

[-] 2 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Right on. "Never ever ever give up." - Winston Churchill

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28456) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Be consistent - rededicate - keep your spirit fed - help feed the spirit of others.

New Today:

Matt Damon and John Krasinski Are in a New Movie About Fracking See the movie and download the flyer to take local action against fracking at a theater near you!

Have you heard about Matt Damon's new movie, "Promised Land"? It's coming out tonight and has the potential to really change the debate on fracking, bringing it to a wider audience than ever before. Grab your friends, check out the movie this weekend and help your local community take action by passing out flyers while you're there!

"Promised Land" is about a small town in rural America that gets a visit from two top oil and gas industry salesmen, hoping to drill (or "frack") for natural gas beneath the ground. Directed by Gus Van Sant (Good Will Hunting, Milk) and co-starring Matt Damon and John Krasinski, it has the potential to be huge — and to show people how fracking can tear apart local communities. Get your friends together to see the movie and show your support for a ban on fracking by passing out flyers outside the theater!

Now, this is just a movie, but the story that "Promised Land" tells is taking place in real life, all across the country. Let's broaden the conversation on fracking, and make sure that this message finds its way to a new audience this weekend. Will you pass out flyers to moviegoers and show your local elected officials that your community is against fracking?

Sign up here, and we'll give you everything you need: http://act.foodandwaterwatch.org/site/Survey?ACTION_REQUIRED=URI_ACTION_USER_REQUESTS&SURVEY_ID=4701

Thanks for taking action,

Katy Kiefer Activist Network Coordinator Food & Water Watch kkiefer@fwwatch.org

Share This By email On Facebook On Twitter

Food & Water Watch is a consumer advocacy nonprofit that challenges the corporate control of our food and water. We empower people to take action and transform the public consciousness about what we eat and drink.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Awesome info. Will digest all this this evening. Very cool.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28456) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

GR8 to have something useful to accompany a movie that may well reach millions and get them wanting to be involved.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

That is fantastic. It really is. So glad film will spread info to wide audience.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28456) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

OHhhh to have people see and consider. Life saving money - economy saving money - coming in on a lie. This is not life saving or community saving - it is a lie pure and simple. A TOTAL LIE. One family may emerge from desolation but end up living off of death and destruction to places they once loved as well as the people left behind. How Foul - how murderously foul.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Yyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyup.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (28456) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

OMG - It makes me want to howl.................................

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 1 year ago

I have been very active in NYC OWS and my perspective is clearly different from many others here and in NYC Occupy & in the working groups. I have posted the link to our web site

http://corporationsarenotpeople.webuda.com

It is my opinion ( and others in our WG ) that while we may need revolutionary changes, and we may press the system from the outside, that the only route to real change is from the inside. My research on this has led me to many details that I have posed on our site.

One "different" way to look at things:
After WW2, a famous author went to Germany to reseach how an advanced culture could be led down the path to ruin by a manic?
The nearly universal answer that he got was "SLOWLY".

Many may think the capitalistic takeover of our democracy began with bush or reagan.
It did not.
It began with the 1971 Powel Memo - on our site as document #22
And has been slowly drowning the 99% ever since

Severing this connection is simple to state -
overturn the SCOTUS Citizens United decision & end corporate personhood.
But this does require the kind of effort that threw the 99% issue to the forefront of the American political debate.
Virtually every goal we have will be attainable once this absolutely fundament step is taken

I stand for non-violence and simplicity and reality and the rule of the majority.
I am very saddened by the number of people here & in NYC OWS who:

hint at violent solutions
advocate very complicated new systems and philosophies
waste time on ideas that very few people actually WANT

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Great info. Will check this out. Have heard a lot about this memo.

[-] 1 points by KevinPotts (363) 1 year ago

"the great political system developed by the founders"?

"one hell of a great country"?

http://occupywallst.org/forum/america-is-not-a-democracy-and-it-never-was-a-demo/

[-] 1 points by gsw (2687) 1 year ago

We have not been a democracy, but it is the goal we the people believe in, and have tried to attain, despite having a civil war, and voters rights, and not recognizing the original inhabitants. So we have not been a democracy

The weird electoral college was to give little states equal power to larger states, and that should be probably reformedoutnof existence.

So we have not been a democracy. But we have also the longest constitution, with all its flaws. The founders wanted it to be revisited, as they left opportunity for amendment, constitional convention, petition.

Problem is the military complex, pharma, oil, banks, think they should run the country. And wars are being waged that haven't been declared. And we have 700 military bases, and we should not be an empire all over the world.

One problem is how can the people check the power of the other branches and politicians that go their own monied way, besides voting every 2 or 4 years, and not having much effect.

That needs to be updated, with direct democracy, meaning one person one vote, electronically, through an amendment, making the representative of the people, the job of the "legislator." to implement the will of the people.

Recalls needs to be increased too. Lobbiests restricted, banned.

Of course there are many reforms I can't get into all here.

Probably should have a constitutional convention too, every few years, to investigate all the issues, and implement the reforms.

Amend 2nd BILL Of Rights.

Excesses of capitalism must hen be investigated and remedied, regulated.

We should look around the world for the best models: Iceland, Germany,

[-] 1 points by KevinPotts (363) 1 year ago

You make some really good points, but abolishing the electoral college (one person one vote) is Not direct democracy. Direct Democracy means that We The People actually vote on "The Issues" instead of only voting for politicians to decide those issues "for us". The job of the "legislator" has always been to implement "the will of the people". The problem is -they do not do their job, they represent Money. Abolishing the electoral college will not change that, it would only make the process of "choosing between 2 Masters to rule over us" a little more "fair".

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

I understand the concept. But do you know enough about food safety, air traffic control system, highway construction, education programs, criminal justice, airline safety, taxation, insurance regulations, fish and game regulations, utility regulations, alternative energy, foreign policy, economic policy, etc to make informed decisions about these issues that are put up for vote by all? And who will be teeing those up for us in the public? Won't that group of people really control the overall dialogue?

I love the idea. I'm just skeptical of how it would work in practice.

[-] 1 points by KevinPotts (363) 1 year ago

Another good point, we would still need educated representatives on certain complicated issues, but as soon as those representatives stopped representing us We Would Have The Power to boot them out immediately. They would either do their job that we elected them for or get the hell out of the way. As far as the most important issues, like: “Should We keep spending Trillions of our hard-earned tax-dollars on invading other countries and murdering millions of people?” “Should We have Universal Health Care?” “Should Workers Get Paid In Full (What We Deserve) For Our Labor?” “Should we get rid of Social Security?" "Should we get rid of Welfare? -and food stamps? -and force poor people to starve to death?" "Should the government create enough jobs for everyone?" "Should rich people be allowed to keep ALL-of-The-Money while We Do ALL-of-The-Real-Work?"

Yeah, I think We The People Need To Be Making Those Important Decisions Directly. It’s a no-brainer. Because it’s obvious (when it comes to those important issues) our so-called politicians are Dangerously-Retarded. They don’t really give a shit about us. And it’s up to US to give a shit about ourselves.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Good point. I'm not sure though who would be in charge of setting up these referendums? Wouldn't they really hold the power?

[-] 1 points by KevinPotts (363) 1 year ago

"who would be in charge of setting up these referendums?" In a Direct Democracy, We The People would be in charge of setting up those referendums and We The People would really hold The Real Power. We would make our own laws and we would rule our own lives, instead of the other way around. In a Direct Democracy, the job of the representative would only be to carry out the policies that have been decided upon By The People and that's it. They would finally be True Servants Of The People and they would not have any power whatsoever to do anything else. We would tell them What We Want Done and they would have no choice but to do it or lose their job.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

It sounds nice but I still don't get how it happens on a practical level. Say there's a need to tighten environmental regulations on the nuclear industry. What would be the process? Who would do what? What would be the process from the point someone gets the idea to the point the nation gets to vote on it?

Or pick another example, the need to establish a weapons treaty with China or an agreement on limiting fishing in the Atlantic to prevent overfishing that depletes the population.

Who are the experts who figure this stuff how. Who shepherds the process? Who decides how the language reads in the referendum?

I'm not doubting its possible. I just don't understand.

[-] 1 points by KevinPotts (363) 1 year ago

“It sounds nice but I still don't get how it happens on a practical level.”

I would suggest doing some research, there is plenty of information available on the net.

Direct Democracy League site is full of info: http://www.ddleague-usa.net/

Also, keep in mind that Democracy itself originated in Athens, Greece and even they had Direct Democracy, however slaves and women were excluded from the process.

“Athenian democracy took the form of a direct democracy, and it had two distinguishing features: the random selection of ordinary citizens to fill the few existing government administrative and judicial offices,[22] and a legislative assembly consisting of all Athenian citizens.[23] All eligible citizens were all to speak and vote in the assembly, which set the laws of the city state.”

Democracy / Ancient origins http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Democracy

If you would like to understand how Direct Democracy works on a practical level, look at the actual democracy that has existed in Switzerland since 1848 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voting_in_Switzerland .

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

I'm happy to look at your links, but I'll be honest with you. It makes me a little nervous that you can't sum it up in a paragraph. How the heck are we going to sell people on the idea if we have to send them links when we ask questions? I'm not trying to be confrontational, just making the point that it takes a lot to get people to switch systems and you really do need an elevator speech in order to get people interested in the beginning, not a bunch of links.

[-] 1 points by KevinPotts (363) 1 year ago

Why would you complain about information links? If you are truly interested in the subject matter, I think I gave you a great headstart. You obviously seem totally lost concerning how it works. I give you information links to help you understand and "that seems sketchy to you"? lol You want me to write you a personal speech? I already wrote an entire Forum Post here on this site devoted to such a speech. And guess what? It was actually inspired by something you said personally in one of your posts :-) I quoted you personally and used your quote as a springboard to start the Forum :-)

Would you rather me re-type the entire thing here? lol Or would it bother you too much if I just gave you immediate-easy-access to that entire Forum Post through this link?: http://occupywallst.org/forum/america-is-not-a-democracy-and-it-never-was-a-demo/

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

I believe you may have misunderstood my point. It's not me I'm worried about Kevin. And it shouldn't be me you're worried about either. I want to see you get just as worked up over the 250 million plus Americans who have no idea what you're talking about. I'll look at your links as I said in my very first sentence. But at least 240 million of the remaining 249,999,999 are NOT going to look at links without first being inspired by something the length of an elevator speech that intrigues them.

You want to convince 9 million people. I want to see you convince the other 241 million. If what you're saying is true, if this will really work as well as you say (and I have no reason to doubt you), then why wouldn't you want to get it out to the most people?

[-] 1 points by KevinPotts (363) 1 year ago

Do you not understand what I just said? lol I wrote an entire Forum Post here, already, I put my entire soul into it, its powerful, I feel it's one of the best things I've ever written. Have you even read it yet?

I don't want you to just take my word for it. That's why I gave you INFORMATION LINKS.

"But at least 240 million of the remaining 249,999,999 are NOT going to look at links without first being inspired by something the length of an elevator speech that intrigues them."

"why wouldn't you want to get it out to the most people?"

I DO want to Get It Out to The Most People! Why do you think I wrote it? lol

You expect me to convince 250 Million People through this Forum? How many people regularly post here? about 30? lol

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Thanks for your thoughtful response. Iceland keeps coming up again and again. What's special about Iceland in your view? Do you have any Iceland-related links that would help me understand their system and what's going on there?

[-] 0 points by ProblemSolver (79) 1 year ago

Comment deleted: No Response.

[-] 0 points by redandbluestripedpill (333) 1 year ago

This is exactly what was intended. That we restructure our republic to protect ourselves from corruption.

"Do we need to scrap the great political system developed by the founders in order to transform our economic system? Can't we RESTORE our republic instead while still changing economic system?"

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

So you're saying we do NOT need to scrap our current system, just add safeguards and restructure some things to keep it current and not hijackable, right?

[-] 1 points by redandbluestripedpill (333) 1 year ago

Yes, and the current system has laws the entire nation will recognize, even if they haven't heard of them. I'm just getting educated here in the last year ,

One thing few seem to have acknowledged is that occupy was only needed because free speech doesn't exist as it was intended.

[-] 0 points by VQkag2 (16478) 1 year ago

Yes we can (and must) reform.

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

It seems that way to me.

[-] 0 points by VQkag2 (16478) 1 year ago

I'm willing to recreate, horizontal, bottom up, direct democracy!

I think perhaps a valuable experiment might be a small local govt that can have citizens vote directly for laws.

i'm sure smarter people than me are working on it.

However, I can't ignore the current power structure. I gotta attempt to create improvements for the 99%, while the effort to recreate continues.

How is the recreation goin? Any update?

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Definitely not my specialty. I'm still learning. All I can tell you is that I'm trying to absorb as many perspectives as possible and question all my assumptions. More than ever we need a solution that we can unify around because the 1% are increasing their assault on us with austerity, their assault on our environment, our economy and our government. We gotta get this thing sorted out.

I kind of like the hybrid approach it seems you're suggesting above... Work like hell to come up with something that is a true alternative while in the short term ameliorating whatever hardship and misery and lost ground we can. That is really the point of THIS PARTICULAR RECOMMENDATION: http://occupywallst.org/forum/breaking-news-hijacking-occurring-every-day-in-the/ . They certainly are not an end all be all but they sure would help give us enough breathing room to make even more fundamental shift.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 1 year ago

Work on all fronts. The only way!

[-] 1 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

Definitely

[-] 0 points by OTP (-203) from Tampa, FL 1 year ago

The thing about direct democracy vs representative democracy- a point of contention with many- is that this current system is so complicated, that Im not sure the average person has the time/ability/will to get it accomplished.

Decentralize the entire thing, simplify it, and maybe direct democracy will work.

But ya, the whole Reform vs Rebuild argument was a total block of a lot of lot of actions. I have mixed feelings on it, but if it engages the general public then it should be considered regardless.

[-] 0 points by therising (6643) 1 year ago

I hope we continue this discussion and begin to convince each other one way or the other because it is a division that seems to be holding us back and preventing much needed unity. Once we realize that the clock is ticking and we new to get past our differences, we'll be unified and we can begin to make decisions from a position of unified strength instead of making demands from a position of divided weakness.

We gotta somehow get past this sticking point.