This is something I have to say now.
I was once told something while hitchhiking that made my stomach hurt. A business guy in a convertible picked us up; a few hours into the ride he asked me,
“Can you guess what the next two big economic bubbles are going to be?”
“Probably green energy and biomedicine.” I said.
“I think green energy is right on.” He said, confidently. “And maybe biomedical. But, what I think is next, is going to make you sick” he said, smiling as he did, having gotten to know me a bit by then.
“Yeah, whats that?”
“Dissent.” he said flatly.
I laughed at him, but if he was right,… well, I do feel sick,… maybe that is the calloused to marketing pessimism in me speaking, but what I do know is that if he was correct it will be more than certainly be an ugly charade in the hands of the media and current market, but further and more importantly the duty of the networked, aware, organized and empathetic of society to expand and enlarge the activist/protest community, which is limited in it’s ability to change in that it is designed to bring attention to perceived and obvious wrongs, not offer solutions; those interested in creating a genuinely fairer society will need to start getting together, to be there; not to get rich and retire into some Ayn Randian valley at the end of a utopian silicon wrist band rainbow, but at the very least to make sure the ugliest sides of capitalism as normal don’t capitalize on and catch the zeitgeist into movement in corporate chains for any longer.
That said, since the end of the occupy encampment at Dewey Square most of my mental energy has revolved around the idea of what a voluntary worker/owner ran collective enterprise would look like, on a small and on a grand scale; as big as occupy, or bigger,…assuming the momentum which the movement had achieved to the point and transitioning into the next phase. A friend worded this concept of the next unifying tactic to me very succinctly, though he felt uncertain of what that tactic would be, by stating, that, ‘it was physically occupying land to have an open dialog with each other which had brought us all together in the first place; Occupying. It was just kind of there, and gave us a sort of purpose. It will have to be something, either that, or like that, which captures the momentum we have.’
I feel that for the movement take the fomentation of protest in all it’s fulminate and passionate best and bring that energy for change into the community, to create genuine change, we would need to create that change necessary in ourselves for a better society before we could ever achieve the society we feel entitled to. We have been paying into. The only way I can conceive to achieve this is through peer to peer to community interaction and exchange.
It seems to me we operate under an illusion currently, one that says if we all but purblindly toss our hope, votes, and taxes into an abysmally dark and deep rabbit hole of a system,..one so abstruse and seemingly unjust while ineffectually attempting to balance its entirety on,….profit,…not to float, not the ability to feed or educate,…
maybe starting today,…or soon, we could begin to gamble on each other, instead of paying someone else to care for us.
Now for some wild speculation.
What if occupy supporters created a corporate entity, which sought to fund raise, collectivize, acquire, and pool as much of the abandoned and blighted property in this country,..or world, as it could; as it’s plow.
With the property, the community and collective could use models of consensus to determine varying degrees of building use and sustainability;add complete transparency and neutrality based on gender, race, age, economic condition, creed, or any other system, and maybe we have?
Libraries,.. of books, tools, instruments, recording studios,… free schools. Cafes. Gardens. Theaters. All conceivable manner of public institution and service.
If pooled collectively, perhaps capital could be loaned, granted, or sought for affinity groups looking to form worker owned collective enterprises of their own. A people’s union.
As for the dreaded legal structure, I can at least imagine a corporation with thousands, or millions of board members, chairs rotating as fast as legally allowable, perhaps even fractions of seconds so everyone could be CEOs for a few minutes in their lives without the power to destroy or harm the orientation of the movement and mission; that, I at least hope, to be the liberation of as much life as possible without causing further undue harm to life on this or any planet.
Who knows what will become of tomorrow; all that can be known of now is that unless we still wish to be be enslaved then we must free ourselves today.