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NOTE: This discussion was originally classified as "hosted" but has now been moved to the "member initiated" category. In the view of the OC Stewards, what is taking place here is a debate rather than dialogue. In a "hosted" discussion here at OC.org, we request that balanced participation be encouraged and that regular summaries occur recognizing all the views being presented.
While we have no objections to people using the OC forum to engage in debates, as long as they don't cross the line into personal attacks, such discussion is not what we are seeking in the "hosted" category.
We are delighted to have Occupy Cafe member Mark E. Smith offer this hosted discussion on the provocative idea of an "election boycott."
As "host," Mark will strive to keep the conversation orderly, offer regular summaries of the perspectives being presented and encourage balanced participation among all those who are engaged. Here's Mark's initial summary:
An election boycott is the only known way to nonviolently delegitimize a government. It doesn't overthrow the government, it simply denies it the consent of the governed so that the government can no longer claim to have the people's consent. Among the many forms of noncompliance, such as removing money from big banks, boycotting corporate brands, withdrawing from the system and creating alternative systems, learning to live on less so as not to have to pay taxes, etc., refusing to vote can be one of the most crucial and effective tactics.
Thank you, Mark, for volunteering your services as "host!"
Wow! So did you ever meet Walter Karp? I should really get some of his other books. Funny how I got to read Indispensable Enemies. I was crossing the street, talking with someone about politics, and somebody crossing the street the other way walked past us, overheard us, and shouted out the name of the book and said to read it. So I did.
Obama just refused to veto the NDDA.
Right..I blogged on that a while ago..also see the live stream..many links to commentray on this.
Really shocking..I wonder if we can count on any of his other.promised vetoes...like the promise to veto payroll tax extension if the pipeline is in it.
Lindsey, Obama and the other criminals in Congress just put the final nail in the coffin of democracy and liberty and we are now living in a police state, period. Alex Jones must be having a field day.
Of course you can count on him, Lindsay. Just have faith in the system and trust your elected officials to do what's best for you. And keep trying to elect better people. I know you can do it. Maybe not in this lifetime, but that's how great things are accomplished, by trusting worthy people who are more competent than you and your crazy neighbors to make your decisions for you.
It's obvious to me (and I suspect to everyone on this thread) that Obama is not to be trusted. That's why I was so appalled to see Robert Reich offer an olive branch to Obama based on his recent speech in which he mouthed the right words, which he has done many times before. If we can't prevent a corporate sycophant like Obama from being re-elected, the least we can do is not support him. As the saying goes, "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice (or a dozen times, in this case) shame on me." Here's the link to the Robert Reich video: http://www.nationofchange.org/offer-president-obama-1323964595.
Not to beat a dead horse, but we need to abandon any democrat who isn't working for the 99% as we speak (that would include the vast majority of them, I'm sure) and vote for independents.
How do we know who is on our side (at least the ones in office)? We tell them what we want them to support (28th Amendment, paper ballots, a ban on electronic voting machines, etc.). If they don't vigorously try to get these things done, we know that they are corporate servants, not public servants and we don't vote for them, no matter how wretched their Republican opposition is.
I just wroye to David Eggleton at another post here at the Cafe that our little Occupy Blue Hill is about to take up this work. They will be looking to out Olympia Snowe ( bia her own voting rceord) and find an excellent candidate to rune against her..I am encouraging them to also out Chellie Pingree who s now married to Hedge Fund Manger Donald Sussman and you can see it in her votes. Some Democrat!!
This is good work.."Occupy Electoral Dysfunction" become the socioeceonmoc viagra by examining our own elected officials..outing all of the bad performers targeting those bad performers up for re election for defeat and finding good candidates to run, preferably fresh and non-party.
That's great that Occupy Blue Hill is looking to out Snowe and possibly Chelie Pingree!
And I love how you took "electoral dysfunction" to the next level with "Occupy Electoral Dysfunction."
I think it's funny enough (and accurate enough) that it might go viral if someone were to propose it as a national action. To me, it's way more inspirational than Occupy Congress.
I thought it was veto-proof anyway.
From my point of view the NDAA cloud might have a silver lining though. When people are imprisoned, their relatives know where they are, can visit them, and don't get too upset. But in many of the brutal dictatorships that the US installed, particularly in Central and South America, we trained and encouraged their governments to disappear people the way the NDAA will allow here. No arrest, no trial, no phone call, just gone. That leaves families desperately wondering if their loved ones are alive and being tortured in some secret prison, or have already been dumped in the ocean or an unmarked mass grave. Disappearing thousands of citizens usually raises social consciousness to the point where an oligarchy becomes totally exposed for what it is, discredited, and can be ousted. I don't know if it would have the same effect here, as people in the US don't always have strong family ties the way people do in Latin American countries, but it might wake up a few.
If, instead of just being beaten and arrested, people start disappearing, it could begin to turn public opinion against the system. Maybe. More likely the majority here will continue to care more about getting a bigger flatscreen TV, the newest cell phone, and making the payments on their car than about where their hippie nephew might have vanished to. If they don't get a call to bail him out, they probably won't give him much thought at all.
Well, we've been doing it elsewhere for ages, so I knew it would happen here sooner or later. What goes around comes around. Do unto others.....and all that jazz. A shame we can't modify the Golden Rule and say, "Don't allow your government to treat others in any way that you wouldn't want your government to treat you." Nah. Not short enough for a sign or a bumper sticker. And too complex to get anything more than a hostile reaction.
It's usually the intellectuals who get rounded up and disappeared first, not the protesters or revolutionaries. The people who might be putting ideas in their heads. I think Gisele mentioned something about it. Nobody likes a smartass, and oligarchies posing as democracies absolutely hate anyone who can see through them. Fancy ideas can cause instability leading to chaos.
Yeah, well, it's not like there wasn't chaos. Our military interventions and the brutal dictatorships we've installed have caused plenty of chaos. The problem for those who oppose the NDAA is that this is chaos coming home to roost. Almost funny if it wasn't so tragic. Some are actually likely to go out into the street and protest the NDAA, which will most likely result in them being disappeared. What shall I say if we end up in the same torture chamber--"Didn't I warn you about authorizing government to bash your head in?" But that would be cruel--they sincerely believed that they were only authorizing government to bash other people's heads in. Or that they weren't even authorizing government to do anything, just trying to get more good people elected.
Grrrrrr. Let's have an emergency code, okay, Victoria? If any of us types kdd, or even just k, it means that the cops just kicked the door down and you'll never hear from us again. That way at least we'll be able to say goodbye.
According to Senator Levin (D-MI), the administration requested the language we detest. It was not in the bill reported out of committee.
Never was the bill in danger of a veto. Also, there was no chance of one of those we're not gonna letters that W was so fond of attaching to bills.
I just read it, too, David.
I'm still processing it.