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The Last Fight For Eden: OWS Vs Oligarchy

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"Let's celebrate a real traditional thanksgiving. Invite over the neighbors and tell them to bring the food, then after dinner we'll kill them all." From an old Saturday Night Live Skit (if my memory serves me correctly).

Many people express the question, "What is this Occupy movement about, who are these people?" The answer is that varies, but the two main groups are reformists and revolutionaries. Reformists like the idea of capitalism but want new restrictions placed on it to keep it from totally dominating every aspect of the economy. Revolutionaries (at least the socialists, communists and anarchists) want to overthrow capitalism in favor of a completely different system favoring varying degrees of collective ownership. The short answer is the 99% are saying that the 1% have converted every last piece of the commons to their private use and want to charge the rest of us to even exist.

While the media, the capitalist mainstream corporate media anyway, portrays OWS as made up of lazy young people who don't want to get a job it is not. They are young people facing a lifetime of debt for college loans that don't translate into decent employment, people who have lost their jobs, their healthcare and their homes. It is estimated that 85% of 2011 college graduates will be moving home with mom and dad, jobless.

And they are people like the young Marine, brain damaged by a police tear gas canister, who fought in two tours of Iraq and received seven medals for his service who was there because he believed in the cause. (Even though the media doesn't make note of it, Iraqi Veterans Against the War are major players in the OWS movement.) Many of these people proudly wear the badge of radical. Why? Because if you look it up in the dictionary radical means to get to the root of the problem.

It is interesting that the media regularly portrays socialists, communists and anarchists as prone to violence, and that they should be shunned, silenced and maybe locked up. Yet their behavior does not match with that. Every one of these groups currently advocates non-violent direct action (direct action can include protest, boycott, sabotage, and".) but welcome reformers and by the very nature of their beliefs, they don't seek to run the agenda, set policy or determine the mission.  

You see there is a strange truth exhibited by the OWS mostly unknown to the average politically ignorant American who thinks that patriotism is a prayer and a pledge to the flag before a football game, that is socialism, communism and anarchism all advocate direct democracy. That is idea is radical and unacceptable to the capitalist because it means that their belief in each other is greater than their belief in capitalism.

Capitalism is not a political system but an economic one. There is nothing in the constitution of the United States that dictates an economic system. Instead the structure gives one the freedom to create economic alternatives. In fact in all aspects capitalism and democracy are structurally opposed to each other with capitalism demanding top down hierarchal systems that opposes consensus seeking in the name of efficiency.

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In this environment, competitive amoral capitalism will always beat out other cooperative collective morals based economies because of its willingness to use illegal and unethical means to gain its end. The simple explanation, one guy can get rich off from a bunch of slaves while in a cooperative enterprise the rewards are spread amongst the workers who produced the wealth with their labor.

Capitalism is Amoral

Reformists on the other hand still hold on to the idea that the system can be improved by changing the rules but leaving capitalism in place. That however is a delusion as capitalism by its very structure and implementation is built to always dilute, subvert or destroy the public concern for the commons when it interferes with profit.

It is capitalism's nature just as the old story of the fox and the scorpion. The scorpion asks the fox to carry it across the river. The fox says no you will sting me. The scorpion says that is ridiculous we would both drown. The fox thinks about it and says ok. Halfway across the stream the scorpion stings the fox and they both start to sink, the fox crying why did you do that, now we will both drown. The scorpion answers it is my nature, you knew I was a scorpion. In America we always try to continue the fallacy that we can have democracy and unbridled capitalism. The truth is you can't because the capitalist economic system will always manipulate, corrupt, distort and in the end kill democracy.

There is nothing in the capitalist system that supports democracy. CEOs are hired to squeeze the most profit from the investment, no matter what the cost. They are hired to convince the public to buy products that many times are harmful to their health, to fund propaganda to manipulate public opinion, to extract the most from workers at the least cost and to hire lobbyists to insure favorable treatment over consumers in government policy.

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They have fiduciary duty to ignore morals, fairness, safety, worker needs or anything else that interferes with profit. It is a system where the most sociopathic individuals are elevated to leadership. If you don't care if your decisions hurt or kill people, steal their property, exploit their labor, you're on track to become a corporate CEO. If you have any moral qualms you will soon be replaced by one who doesn't.

It is the kind of system that allows top management to calculate how many people will burn up in their cars because of a defective gas tank and figure it is cheaper to pay for a few deaths than fix the problem. It is the mentality that pushes cigarettes, high fructose corn syrup, alcohol (opposes marijuana which is accessible to all) and SUVs. It finds no problem with funding anti-climate change propaganda, clean coal, and sells sexy outfits for eight year olds.

Alternative Collectivism

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John Kelley is the Managing Editor of a monthly progressive newsmagazine, "We the People News", in Corpus Christi, Texas

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