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Occupy Wall Street

Occupy Wall Street and “The American Autumn”: Is It a “Colored Revolution”?

Part I

by Michel Chossudovsky

Global Research, October 13, 2011

There is a grassroots protest movement unfolding across America, which includes people from all walks of life, from all age groups, conscious of the need for social change and committed to reversing the tide.

The grassroots of this movement constitutes a response to the "Wall Street agenda" of financial fraud and manipulation which has served to trigger unemployment and poverty across the land.

Does this movement constitute in its present form an instrument of meaningful reform and social change in America?

What is the organizational structure of the movement? Who are its main architects?

Has the movement or segments within this movement been co-opted?

This is an important question, which must be addressed by those who are part of the Occupy Wall Street Movement as well as those who, across America, support real democracy.

Introduction

Historically, progressive social movements have been infiltrated, their leaders co-opted and manipulated, through the corporate funding of non-governmental organizations, trade unions and political parties. The ultimate purpose of "funding dissent" is to prevent the protest movement from challenging the legitimacy of the economic elites:

"In a bitter irony, part of the fraudulent financial gains on Wall Street in recent years have been recycled to the elites’ tax exempt foundations and charities. These windfall financial gains have not only been used to buy out politicians, they have also been channelled to NGOs, research institutes, community centres, church groups, environmentalists, alternative media, human rights groups, etc.

The inner objective is to "manufacture dissent" and establish the boundaries of a "politically correct" opposition. In turn, many NGOs are infiltrated by informants often acting on behalf of western intelligence agencies. Moreover, an increasingly large segment of the progressive alternative news media on the internet has become dependent on funding from corporate foundations and charities.

The objective of the corporate elites has been to fragment the people’s movement into a vast "do it yourself" mosaic." (See Michel Chossudovsky, Manufacturing Dissent: the Anti-globalization Movement is Funded by the Corporate Elites, Global Research, September 20, 2010)

"Manufacturing Dissent"

At the same time, "manufactured dissent" is intent upon promoting political and social divisions (e.g. within and between political parties and social movements). In turn, it encourages the creation of factions within each and every organization.

With regard to the anti-globalization movement, this process of division and fragmentation dates back to the early days of the World Social Forum. (See Michel Chossudovsky, Manufacturing Dissent: The Anti-globalization Movement is Funded by the Corporate Elites, Global Research, September 20, 2010)

Most of the progressive organizations of the post-World War II period, including the European "Left" have, in the course of the last thirty years, been transformed and remoulded. The "Free Market" system (Neoliberalism) is the consensus of the "Left". This applies, among others, to the Socialist Party in France, the Labour Party in Britain, the Social Democrats in Germany, not to mention the Green Party in France and Germany.

In the US, bi-partisanship is not the result of the interplay of Congressional party politics. A handful of powerful corporate lobby groups control both the Republicans and the Democrats. The "bi-partisan consensus" is established by the elites who operate behind the scenes. It is enforced by the main corporate lobby groups, which exert a stranglehold over both major political parties.

In turn, the leaders of the AFL-CIO have also been co-opted by the corporate establishment against the grassroots of the US labor movement.

The leaders of organized labor attend the annual meetings of the Davos World Economic Forum (WEF). They collaborate with the Business Roundtable. But at the same time, the grassroots of the US labor movement has sought to to carry out organizational changes which contribute to democratizing the leadership of individual trade unions.

The elites will promote a "ritual of dissent" with a high media profile, with the support of network TV, the corporate news as well as the internet.

The economic elites — which control major foundations — also oversee the funding of numerous civil society organizations, which historically have been involved in the protest movement against the established economic and social order. The programs of many NGOs (including those involved in the Occupy Wall Street Movement) rely heavily on funding from private foundations including the Ford, Rockefeller, MacArthur, Tides foundations, among others.

Historically, the anti-globalization movement which emerged in the 1990s has opposed Wall Street and the Texas oil giants controlled by Rockefeller, et al. Yet the foundations and charities of Rockefeller, Ford et al have, over the years, generously funded progressive anti-capitalist networks as well as environmentalists (opposed to Big Oil) with a view to ultimately overseeing and shaping their various activities.

"Colored Revolutions"

In the course of the last decade, "colored revolutions" have emerged in several countries. The "colored revolutions" are US intelligence ops which consist in covertly supporting protest movements with a view to triggering "regime change" under the banner of a pro-democracy movement.

"Colored revolutions" are supported by the National Endowment for Democracy, the International Republican Institute and Freedom House, among others. The objective of a "colored revolution" is to foment social unrest and use the protest movement to topple the existing government. The ultimate foreign policy goal is to instate a compliant pro-US government (or "puppet regime").

"The Arab Spring"

In Egypt’s "Arab Spring", the main civil society organizations including Kifaya (Enough) and The April 6 Youth Movement were not only supported by US based foundations, they also had the endorsement of the US State Department. (For details see Michel Chossudovsky, The Protest Movement in Egypt: "Dictators" do not Dictate, They Obey Orders, Global Research, January 29, 2011)

Egyptian dissidents, Fellows of Freedom House in Washington DC (2008)

"In a bitter irony, Washington supported the Mubarak dictatorship, including its atrocities, while also backing and financing its detractors,… Under the auspices of Freedom House, Egyptian dissidents and opponents of Hosni Mubarak (see above) were received in May 2008 by Condoleezza Rice … and White House National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley." (See Michel Chossudovsky, The Protest Movement in Egypt: "Dictators" do not Dictate, They Obey Orders, Global Research, January 29, 2011)

The following year (May 2009), a delegation of Egyptian dissidents was received by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (See below)

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks with "Egyptian activists promoting freedom and democracy", prior to meetings at the State Department in Washington, DC, May 28, 2009.
Compare the two pictures. Part of the 2008 delegation meeting Condoleeza Rice is part of the 2009 delegation meeting Hillary Clinton

OTPOR and the Centre for Applied Non Violent Action and Strategies (CANVAS)

Dissidents of Egypt’s April 6 Youth Movement, which, for several years, was in permanent liaison with the US Embassy in Cairo, were trained by Serbia’s Centre for Applied Non Violent Action and Strategies (CANVAS), a consulting and training firm specializing in "Revolution" supported by FH and the NED.

CANVAS was established in 2003 by OTPOR, a CIA supported Serbian organization which played a central role in the downfall of Slobodan Milosevic in the wake of the 1999 NATO bombing of Yugoslavia.

Barely two months after the end of the 1999 bombings of Yugoslavia, OTPOR was spearheaded into playing a central role in the installation of a US-NATO sponsored "caretaker" government in Serbia. These developments also paved the way towards the secession of Montenegro from Yugoslavia, the establishment of the US Bondsteel military base and the eventual formation a Mafia State in Kosovo.

In August 1999, the CIA is reported to have set up a training program for OTPOR in Bulgaria’s capital Sofia:

"In the summer of 1999, the head of the CIA, George Tenet, set up shop in Sofia, Bulgaria to “educate” the Serb opposition. Last August. 28 [2000], the BBC confirmed that a special 10-day class had been given to the Otpor militants, also in Sofia.

The CIA program is a program in successive phases. Early on, they flatter the Serbs’ patriotism and spirit of independence, acting as if they respect these qualities. But after having sown confusion and broken the unity of the country, the CIA and NATO would go much further."

(Gerard Mugemangano and Michel Collon, "To be partly controlled by the CIA ? That doesn’t bother me much.", Interview with two activists of the Otpor student movement, International Action Center (IAC), To be partly controlled by the CIA ? October 6, 2000. See also "CIA is tutoring Serbian group, Otpor", The Monitor, Sofia, translated by Blagovesta Doncheva, Emperors Clothes, September 8, 2000 )

"The Revolution Business"

OTPOR’s Centre for Applied Non Violent Action and Strategies (CANVAS) describes itself as "an International network of trainers and consultants" involved in the "Revolution Business". Funded by the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), it constitutes a consulting outfit, advising and training US sponsored opposition groups in more than 40 countries.

OTPOR played a key role in Egypt.

Egypt Tahir Square: What appeared to be a spontaneous democratization process was a carefully planned intelligence operation. View video below.


Egypt. The Logo of the April 6 Movement

Egypt’s “April 6 Youth Movement,” the same fist logo, Source Infowars

Both the April 6 Movement and Kifaya (Enough!) received prior training from CANVAS in Belgrade "in the strategies of non-violent revolution". "According to Stratfor, The tactics used by the April 6 Movement and Kifaya "were straight out of CANVAS’s training curriculum." (Quoted in Tina Rosenberg, Revolution U, Foreign Policy, February 16, 2011 )

It is worth noting the similarity of the logos as well as the names involved in CANVAS-OTPOR sponsored "Colored Revolutions" The April 6 Youth Movement in Egypt used the clenched fist as its logo, Kifaya ("Enough!") has the same name as the Youth Protest movement supported by OTPOR in Georgia which was named Kmara! ("Enough!"). Both groups were trained by CANVAS.

Georgia’s Kmara ("Enough!")

The Role of CANVAS-OTPOR in the Occupy Wall Street Movement

CANVAS-OPTOR is currently involved in the Occupy Wall Street Movement (#OWS).

Several key organizations currently involved in The Occupy Wall Street (#OWS) movement played a significant role in "The Arab Spring". Of significance, "Anonymous", the social media "hacktivist" group, was involved in waging cyber-attacks on Egyptian government websites at the height of "The Arab Spring".(http://anonops.blogspot.com, see also http://anonnews.org/)

In May 2011, "Anonymous" waged cyberattacks on Iran and last August, it waged similar cyber-attacks directed against the Syrian Ministry Defense. These cyber-attacks were waged in support of the Syrian "opposition" in exile, which is largely integrated by Islamists. (See Syrian Ministry Of Defense Website Hacked By ‘Anonymous’, Huffington Post, August 8, 2011).

The actions of "Anonymous" in Syria and Iran are consistent with the framework of the "Colored Revolutions". They seek to demonize the political regime and create political instability. (For analysis on Syria’s Opposition, see Michel Chossudovsky, SYRIA: Who is Behind The Protest Movement? Fabricating a Pretext for a US-NATO "Humanitarian Intervention" Global Research, May 3, 2011)

Both CANVAS and Anonymous are now actively involved in the Occupy Wall Street Movement.

The precise role of CANVAS in the Occupy Wall Street Movement remains to be assessed.

Ivan Marovic, a leader of CANVAS recently addressed the Occupy Wall Street protest movement in New York City. Listen carefully to his speech. (Bear in mind that his organization CANVAS is supported by NED).

Click link below to listen to Ivan Marovic’s address to Occupy Wall Street in New York City

Ivan Marovic addresses Occupy Wall Street

Marovic acknowledged in an earlier statement that there is nothing spontaneous in the planning of a "revolutionary event":

"It looks like people just went into the street. But it’s the result of months or years of preparation. It is very boring until you reach a certain point, where you can organize mass demonstrations or strikes. If it is carefully planned, by the time they start, everything is over in a matter of weeks." (Quoted in Tina Rosenberg, Revolution U, Foreign Policy, February 16, 2011)

This statement by OTPOR’s spokesperson Ivan Marovic would suggest that the protest movements in the Arab World did not spread spontaneously from one country to another, as portrayed by the Western media. The national protest movements were planned well in advance. The chronology and sequencing of these national protest movements were also planned.

Similarly, Maravic’s statement also suggests that The Occupy Wall Street movement was also the object of careful advanced planning by a number of key organizations on tactics and strategy.

It is worth noting that one of OTPOR’s tactics is "not try to avoid arrests", but rather to "provoke them and use them to the movement’s advantage." as a PR strategy. (Ibid)

Occupy Wall Street Clenched Fist on http://occupywallst.org

MUST WATCH: Occupy Wall Street & The Revolution Business (Washington, Pentagon | U.S. Agenda)

“The best way to control the opposition is to lead it ourselves.” – Vladimir Ilyich Lenin

Democratic change has been demanded across the Middle East. But was what seems like a spontaneous revolution actually a strategically planned event, fabricated by ‘revolution consultants’ long in advance?

In 2004 George Bush announced a “Greater Middle East Project” at the G8 summit. Bush stated that Washington’s goal was to turn the Middle East into a free market paradise with shock therapy.

Revolution consultants are the worst nightmare of every regime. Srdja Popovic was a founder of the organisation ‘Otpor’, a revolution training school. It was instrumental in the overthrow of Slobodan Milosevic in the 1990s and has now inspired a new generation of activists. Political commentators like William Engdahl are convinced Otpor is being financed by the USA. “The people from Otpor gave us a book in which they described all their strategies”, says Ezzedine Zaatour of the Tunisian uprising. That book was written by an American, Gene Sharp, and is now considered the “revolution guide book”, being used by opposition movements worldwide. As Optor release their latest gadget, a resistance training computer game sponsored by American organisations, world leaders are voicing their concerns. “This is called a gentle coup!”, states Hugo Chavez.

Otpor! (which means “Resistance!” in Serbian) is funded by known CIA fronts such as the National Endowment for Democracy, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) the International Republican Institute (headed by John McCain), the U.S. Institute of Peace in Washington (established by President Reagan in 1984 and funded by the U.S. Congress), and Council on Foreign Relations foundations such as the Carnegie Group and the Albert Einstein Institute. These government gangs are the “private companies” that Otpor! leader Srdja Popovic refers to in the video. Otpor!, became despised by the people of its native Serbia when it was exposed as a CIA front. This resulted in its operatives changing their name to the Centre for Applied Nonviolent Action and Strategies – CANVAS. (read more here: No Free Speech at Occupy Wall Street, San Diego)

Creepy: Otpor Training Evident on Occupy Wall Street?

Ivan Marovic of ‘Otpor!’ addresses Occupy Wall Street 09/22/11

Bill McKibben at Occupy Wall Street rally 10/8/2011

Occupation & Infiltration: Questions Regarding 15October.net

Occupation & Infiltration: Questions Regarding 15October.net

October 13th, 2011

We now witness what has quickly become nothing less than a massive scramble by the institutional left and U.S. Democratic Party to jump on board and attempt to co-opt the ‘Occupy Wall Street’ movement. Of course, that witness requires assuming the ‘occupation’ movement was not co-opted from the beginning.

Many questions arise when one looks closely at the website www.15october.net. Is this website an attempt to infiltrate, control and pacify spontaneous “Wall Street Occupations” now being implemented globally, while sanctioning recent and ongoing military occupations? Further, the question must be asked: why is the recent NATO-led invasion of Libya being marketed as ‘revolution’ along with other countries being invaded/bombed and occupied by Imperialist countries?

The Euro-American attack on Libya has nothing to do with protecting anyone; only the terminally naive believe such nonsense. It is the West’s response to popular uprisings in strategic, resource-rich regions of the world and the beginning of a war of attrition against the new imperial rival, China. – John Pilger, April 6th, 2011

15october.net Website Registered July 12th, 2011: United Nations

Understanding  http://www.15october.net/ is not the official website (as there really are no ‘official’ websites for a supposed spontaneous movement) of the ongoing movement of global “Wall Street” occupations, this website certainly appears to portray itself strategically as an official global clearinghouse for organizing the ‘revolution’.

The following information was obtained via GoDaddy.com, Inc.’s WHOIS database:

The website domain is registered to Paulina Arcos (United Nations; Ecuadorian Permanent Mission to the UN, New York, USA)

It was registered July 12th, 2011.

A key question relates to the date this website was created: July 12th 2011. How did the organizers foresee that there would be occupations all over the world on October 15th in July?

The following data was obtained from GoDaddy.com, Inc.’s WHOIS database:

Registrant:
Paulina Arcos

866 United Nations Plaza
Suite 516
New York, New York 10017
United States

Registered through: GoDaddy.com, Inc. (http://www.godaddy.com)
Domain Name: 15OCTOBER.NET
Created on: 12-Jul-11
Expires on: 12-Jul-12
Last Updated on: 21-Sep-11

Administrative Contact:
Arcos, Paulina europeanrevolution
866 United Nations Plaza
Suite 516
New York, New York 10017
United States
005932374689

Technical Contact:
Arcos, Paulina europeanrevolution
866 United Nations Plaza
Suite 516
New York, New York 10017
United States
005932374689

Domain servers in listed order:
VENS.TOMALAPLAZA.NET
DNS.CIUDADRED.NET

Originally, United we will re-invent the world  contained © 2011 All Rights Reserved beside it (removed since we originally posted this article).

Grassroots movements do not generally copyright slogans/phrases.

The twitter account set up for this campaign began launching ‘tweets’ at the end of September 2011. It has approximately 8,000 followers.

The facebook page has approximately 18,000 ‘likes’/followers.

This site is very much reminiscent of the TckTckTck campaign which presented itself before Copenhagen 2009 and dominated the climate justice ‘movement’. It, too, was also initiated by the United Nations working with one of the largest marketing agencies in the world (Havas), while partnering with many of the most powerful corporations on the planet, in a united effort to “to make it become a movement that consumers, advertisers and the media would use and exploit.”

Many people now understand how corporate media is integral and imperative in protecting and benefiting those in power. For those who do yet grasp this reality, consider how Al-Jazeera was instrumental for the NATO war on Libya. In the recent article “Al-Jazeera and the Triumph of Televised Propaganda”, the author reports that “the height of duplicity was reached when a replica of the Green Square and Bab-el-Azizia was built in the studios of Al-Jazeera in Doha, where footage of false images was shot portraying pro-US ‘insurgents’ entering Tripoli.” Of course, this incident barely scratches the surface in the role of corporate media (including Al Jazerra, Al Jaz, Al Arabyia) who have been most instrumental in deploying a steady stream of propaganda and lies.

Although many of the organizers of this questionable ‘occupation’ campaign are possibly legitimate (as in the case of TckTckTck), the campaign itself seems very suspect. More questions arise. For instance, why is a European ‘revolution’ being organized from within America? Why is the world ‘revolution’ being organized by an individual who gives her address as the United Nations?

The following video was uploaded on August 7th, 2011. It includes images of Libya’s ‘revolution’ (minus the NATO-led slaughter), “free Syria” images, Yemen (where a covert U.S. war is underway), and Tunisia:

It is signed or otherwise endorsed by the following groups:

https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=217223788318602
http://international.democraciarealya.es/october-15th/
http://www.facebook.com/WorldRevolutionNow
http://www.facebook.com/democraciarealya
http://www.facebook.com/SpanishRevolution
http://occupytogether.org/

Beware the Word “Democracy”

When researching where http://www.15october.net/ originated, this information is found on UK Indymedia website. Here we find the phrase “we too call for a regime change: a global regime change” which reappears in the http://www.15october.net/ campaign. Notice the repeated call-out against Gadaffi and Assad (Syria) within the statement.

“The ultimate objective of the Syria protest movement, through media lies and fabrications, is to create divisions within Syrian society as well as justify an eventual “humanitarian intervention”. – Media Lens, October 13th, 2011

From the organising committee of Real Democracy Now UK
Contact: realdemocracynowuk
Website: www.15october.net
Facebook: http://tinyurl.com/3o9fcsx
Twitter: @realdemocracyuk

Global Democracy Statement:

“On 15th October 2011, united in our diversity, united for global change, we demand global democracy: global governance by the people, for the people. Inspired by our sisters and brothers in Tunis, Cairo, Bengazi, Daraa, Palestine-Israel, Spain and Greece, we too call for a regime change: a global regime change. We will not come to global institutions, hat in hand, begging for policy change. In the words of Vandana Shiva, the Indian activist, today we demand replacing the G8 with the whole of humanity – the G 7,000,000,000. These are our global Mubarak, our global Assad, our global Gaddafi: the IMF, the WTO, global markets, multinational banks, the G8G20, the European Central Bank, the World Bank, the Basel Committee on bank regulations and other undemocratic international institutions. Like Mubarak and Assad, these institutions must not be allowed to run people’s lives without their consent. We are all born equal, rich or poor, woman or man. Every African and Asian is equal to every European and American. Our global institutions must reflect this, or be overturned. Today, like the Mexican Zapatistas, we say “Ya basta! Aqui el pueblo manda y el gobierno obedece”: Enough! Here the people command and government obeys! Like the Spanish Tommalaplaza we say “Democracia Real Ya”: True global democracy now! “Today we call the citizens of the world: let us globalize Tahrir Square! Let us globalise Puerta del Sol.”

What do we know about language and the word ‘democracy’, which serves the agenda of Imperialist countries so well?

Via the recent Voltaire article Washington is Conquering Africa:

“The terrorists not only fight for Washington on the ground, but they also interact with Washington through so-called human rights organizations that promote democracy. These individuals not only destabilize their countries, but they also actively work for regime change and military intervention. Libya is a clear case of this.”

The organizers of http://www.15october.net/ state:

“Inspired by our sisters and brothers in Tunis, Cairo, Bengazi, Daraa, Palestine-Israel, Spain and Greece, we too call for a regime change: a global regime change.”

It is critical to note they refer to the “sisters and brothers in Bengazi (second largest city in Libya) and Daraa (Syria) but not Manama (Bahrein). It is important to note that in Bahrein, the people’s uprising against an Emir who was very friendly with the West was, in reality, a massive and peaceful uprising which was violently repressed by a foreign army (Saudi tanks) while the world watched in silence. This event must be considered the true “Prague Spring.” For the rest, what we have witnessed and continue to witness could be considered a “ballon d’essai” by the world’s most powerful and deadly forces.

Are citizens in Libya and the like actually calling for regime change, or is this simply what the Imperialist powers and corporate media would like us to believe?

Do we really believe that families with children wish to be bombed, slaughtered and occupied by Imperialist countries who then steal resources? (See the aftermath of the recent Honduras coup below)

Governments who submit to, and co-operate with, Western powers are left alone. Governments who do not submit and comply to the Imperialist states are susceptible to well-staged coup d’état in order to overthrow and replace with appointed puppet regimes. Billions of dollars and massive amounts of resources are dedicated to planned and ongoing operations. Corporate media and corporate NGOs and many other institutions all have vital roles to fulfill in order to enable the success of such operations. Industrialized capitalism, the very root cause to all global crises wreaking havoc and chaos, dominates the global agenda, and, by every appearance, Imperialist states and their great enablers – the institutional left – scheme to protect it .

The following telesur video (October 12th 2010) shows hundreds of thousands of supporters gathered in the streets of Damascus, in support of Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad. The citizens are demonstrating their total rejection toward any kind of foreign interference or intervention:

It must be considered: is the www.15october.net campaign yet another component of global psy-ops to convince/condition people of the globe that the recent invasions in Libya and elsewhere are welcome and supported by the citizens of those countries?

The http://www.15october.net/ website registered to Paulina Arcos has an affiliated email address:

Arcos, Paulina europeanrevolution@vaultletsoft.com.

When searching this email address, it leads to the “European Revolution” website, which states the following:

“We are an informative platform in English that aims to support the ongoing pro-democracy protests throughout Europe. We believe in alternative and independent media, net neutrality, real participatory democracy, active citizenship and the common ideals put forth by the first protests in Spain. We understand this … revolution is made up of global citizens facing global issues, therefore, one of our goals is to create a net of volunteers and activists from around Europe to fight for our common goal. We are open for collaboration in many ways, feel free to contact us at: europeanrevolution” (Official web: europeanrevolution, The official websites listed: http://takethesquare.net, http://www.europeanrevolution.net, http://www.roarmag.org)

We also find a WikiLeaks cable information (created September 23rd 2005, released August 30th, 2011) on Francisco Carrion Mena; spouse of Paulina Arcos:

“Francisco Carrion Mena, who has been tapped to replace Foreign Minister Antonio Parra, comes to the job with a history of leftist leanings, but with a solid background as a career diplomat and a good relationship with the United States. … We are guardedly optimistic about the change in leadership at the Foreign Ministry. Admittedly, Carrion benefits from any comparison to his predessor who consistently set back mission goals by courting Venezuela …”

The questions behind the organization/organizations become much more complicated when one reads this post on the ‘WikiLeaks Central’ website referring to “European Revolution” activists taking a decision to become ‘public’. One signatory of the letter is ‘Santiago Carrion’. Is this the son of Francisco Carrion Mena; spouse of Paulina Arcos?

Excerpt from the letter:

“From November 2010 we have been working on a daily basis in different fields of Internet activism and journalism anonymously. We have decided, however, to become public. The reasons are many, our personal security being the main one. After all this, we have reasons to believe that our personal integrity might be at risk. For example, in May, our web www.europeanrevolution.net was blocked via DNS in France, Belgium and Germany. Afterwards, our server in Iceland was penetrated and all our content deleted.”

Controlling the Masses – Framing the Uprisings as Passive

Carefully note the language of the http://www.15october.net/ campaign:

“Now it is time for all of us to join in a global non-violent protest. … On October 15th, we will meet on the streets to initiate the global change we want. We will peacefully demonstrate, talk and organize until we make it happen.”

Yet, we all know that peaceful demonstrations, talking and organizing will not make it happen. The corporate state only fears what it cannot control. One can safely assume that this campaign, like so many others, is designed to pacify, minimize and control any true revolutionary potential which could threaten or disrupt the system. This campaign, even if it were proven to be ‘legitimate’, is nothing more than the status quo “valvola di scarico” that the institutional left with their marketing executives have mastered so well. October 15th is meant to make people feel good – not to threaten nor disrupt the system in any meaningful way. That being said, legitimate occupations of the people CAN be revolutionary if they can resist co-optation. Tunisia is the most explicit example.

An important note: None of this is to say there are no real activists or well-intentioned people behind this campaign. Like TckTckTck, real activists and well-intentioned people are bound to be hired and recruited. Their presence and participation is imperative if such campaigns are to have any legitimacy in the eyes of the public. A singular case in point is the fact that while the language within this campaign suggests that invasions/occupations (under the guise of humanitarian assistance) of Libya and elsewhere are welcome, there are examples found within the website which speak out against NATO and other imperialist powers, as well as suggested demonstrations against the war on Libya and militarism. Although this may appear odd, it is quite normal. It is the key messages and catch phrases that are important to those who protect the system – not the text buried within the website and not the dialogue/placards/petitions and peaceful demonstrations which the corporate state will never fear.

Due to limited time constraints, many questions thus far remain unanswered. Of course, if there were no holes in a million layers of deceit we uncover on a daily basis, victory for the people would certainly not remain elusive.

More and more, we must become absolutely vigilant to the constant threat of allowing our movement – and ourselves as individuals – to be re-absorbed by the very forces we seek to oppose and dismantle. For instance, only ALBA countries spoke out against the NATO war on Libya in which 50,000 people and counting have been reported killed. Grassroots organizations and individuals must reject outright corporate media information, reject outright corporate NGO affiliation, and seek alignment with ALBA governments speaking out against these atrocities. We must align ourselves with the people of these countries with democratically elected governments who attempt to nationalize resources and reject US/ European interference/Imperialism against all odds.

In 2004, in an interview with Democracy Now!, former Nato chief General Wesley Clark recalled a conversation with a Pentagon general in 2001, a few weeks after the September 11 attacks:

‘He reached over on his desk. He picked up a piece of paper. And he said, “I just got this down from upstairs” — meaning the Secretary of Defense’s office — “today.” And he said, “This is a memo that describes how we’re going to take out seven countries in five years, starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.”

+++

Further Reading | Information | Resources:

Annie Machon: ex-MI-5 whistle-blower, activist and author joins Jack Etkin for an elucidating and revealing look at ‘Deep State’ and high-level national and international intelligence and security methodologies. Annie covers subjects such as false-flag/black operations, the MI-5’s botched attempt on Gaddafi’s life, the London Tube bombing (7/7), 9/11 and others. This penetrating and articulate interview is a must see. It verifies why we must question everything we are spoon-fed by mainstream media:

After the Coup: The Deadliest Place in the World for a Journalist: Mini-documentary on the Honduran journalists that have watched 15 colleagues assassinated in 19 months under the Lobo regime, a government Barack Obama praises for its “strong commitment to democracy”: http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=7432

Media Lens: http://www.medialens.org/

Voltaire: http://www.voltairenet.org/en

John Pilger: The War You Don’t See: http://www.johnpilger.com/

STOP NATO: http://rickrozoff.wordpress.com/

MoveOn.Org and Friends Attempt to Co-Opt Occupy Wall Street Movement

Tuesday 11 October 2011

by: Steve Horn, Truthout | News Analysis

101011co.jpg

Demonstrators with the Occupy Wall Street protests in Zucotti Park in New York, October 7, 2011. Protests in Wall Street section of New York enter their third week, with similar efforts springing up in Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles and Seattle. (Photo: Michael Appleton / The New York Times)

Gandhi once said of growing movements of social protestation, “First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win.” The trajectory of the ever-evolving and growing Occupy Wall Street movement follows the same pattern almost to a “T,” with slight variation.

Now, apply that model to the most recent public relations and marketing ploys of organizations like MoveOn.org, the ascendant “Reclaim the American Dream Movement” and the general segment of society author and journalist Chris Hedges calls the “Liberal Class” in his most recent book titled “The Death of the Liberal Class” (of which the former two are both a part).

In so doing, one can observe a perfect case study of the liberal class in action, in four distinct acts, with one exception: “then they fight you” can be replaced with “then they attempt to co-opt your movement.”

Act One – Getting Ignored: In the early planning stages of Occupy Wall Street, few eyes were on those working behind the scenes to make this vision a reality. With little funding backing their cause, the activists calling for this action, to those even paying any attention to them at all (few and far between), seemed quixotic or at the very least, overly optimistic. This was the case even to those highly sympathetic to the cause and its accompanying ideology.

How in the world does a rag-tag bunch of activists take on the financial power center of the world that calls the shots politically in statehouses around the country, on a federal level and around the world? Because the task was such a monumental undertaking, these activists were essentially ignored all throughout the planning stages and into the opening days of the occupation itself.

The liberal class, predictably, was nowhere to be seen in the planning stages of Occupy Wall Street, wholeheartedly ignoring the fact, or simply not even knowing the fact, that this occupation was in the works.

Act Two – Getting Laughed at: Once it was seen that, while not yet a movement, the people occupying Wall Street had, at the very least, legitimate grievances, the liberal class resorted to scornful tactics like mockery of the type of people in the movement – ad hominem attacks, if you will.

The scorn was well-depicted by liberal environmental blogger, Grist’s David Roberts, who tweeted, “I’ve been reading about #occupywallstreet for the last hour or two & it’s just horrific. Practically designed to discredit leftist protest.” It was also on perfect display with liberal blogger David Atkins, who mockingly tweeted, “If you want to #occupywallstreet, 1) shave 2) wear some decent clothes 3) coordinate signs about inequality 4) get a media spokesperson.” The diatribe proceeded for multiple tweets, Atkins having listed ten points.

In a post titled, “What’s behind the scorn for the Wall Street protests?” Salon.com blogger Glenn Greenwald aptly explained their behavior and tactics, writing, “Any entity that declares itself an adversary of prevailing institutional power is going to be viewed with hostility by establishment-serving institutions and their loyalists. That’s just the nature of protests that take place outside approved channels, an inevitable by-product of disruptive dissent: those who are most vested in safeguarding and legitimizing establishment prerogatives … are going to be hostile to those challenges. As the virtually universal disdain in these same circles for WikiLeaks (and, before that, for the Iraq War protests) demonstrated: the more effectively adversarial it is, the more establishment hostility it’s going to provoke.”

The liberal class, though, quickly realized that Occupy Wall Street was gaining traction, with leaders of the left like

, Naomi Klein, Cornel West and Joseph Stiglitz joining the cause in solidarity, and its leaders realized that it must co-opt the movement while time is still on its side.

Act Three – Co-Option: With Occupy Wall Street off the ground, but its longevity still in flux, MoveOn.org and its cousin, the Center For American Progress, and Van Jones’Reclaim the American Dream Movement, were nowhere to be found. Instead, they were busy planning the Take Back The American Dream Conference, which took place from October 3 through October 5.

“Taking back the American Dream,” Jones said in an interview appearing on AlterNet, will be a three-step process.

First, the planned November 17 “Rising Tide of Protest,” a protest, led by the Reclaim the American Dream Movement, will be held in a network of cities throughout the United States. As FireDogLake’s David Dayen explained, “[The] November 17 protests announced by the American Dream Movement … [are] a one-day protest across multiple cities across the country that organizers hope will be a massive activation of their supporters.”

Second, an amalgamation of coordinated house meetings and online teach-ins. “We’re going to try to get a million leaders in America online and talking with each other. And that’s going to be a major piece,” said Jones.

Third and most importantly to an organization “powered by,” (aka a project of) MoveOn.org, which among other things, is an organization that raises campaign money for Democratic Party candidates, Jones said the 2012 elections are a vital piece of the puzzle. “And then there’s a third piece and it’s new – and it seems to have escaped people’s notice – and that’s that we’ve said we’re going to run 2012 people for office in 2012. Now, that’s a big deal,” Jones stated.

“We’re talking about U.S. senators who want to run as American Dream candidates – soon to be announced. We’ve reached out to the House Democratic Caucus; there are House members who want to run as American Dream candidates,” he continued.

What this translates to, in layman’s terms, is the very process of co-opting a growing movement of democratic resistance and trying to replace it with a sales pitch to go out in 2012 and vote Democrat. Jones and the Democratic Party operations in disguise, namely the likes of MoveOn.org and the Center for American Progress, are taking a page out of the Dick Armey and Koch brothers’ Tea Party co-option playbook with this one.

Indeed, many forget that before the Tea Party was an Astroturf movement funded by Armey and the Koch brothers, it was an enraged grassroots movement, led mostly by Ron Paullibertarians. Then it got co-opted and now it is a rotten pawn of corporate elites.

If Occupy Wall Street organizers are not careful, this could also be their destiny.

Act Four – Win or Be Co-Opted? That Is the Question:Occupy Wall Street, now three weeks into the occupation, now finds itself in a pivotal moment. Will the nonpartisan, anti-establishment movement allow itself to be co-opted by the Democratic Party serving powers that be, i.e. by the MoveOn.orgs and Center for American Progresses of the world, or will it remain a strong, left, independent force that grows with each passing day and strikes fear into what the late sociologist C. Wright Mills calls the power elite?

One thing is for certain – the liberal class is working overtime to co-opt a burgeoning social justice movement.

Exhibit A: On October 5, Day 19 of Occupy Wall Street, MoveOn.org sent out an email calling on clicktivists (as opposed to activists) to “Join the Virtual March on Wall Street.” “The 99% are both an inspiration and a call that needs to be answered. So we’re answering it today, in a nationwide Virtual March on Wall Street to support their demand for an economy that serves the many, not the few … Join in the virtual march by doing what hundreds have done spontaneously across the web: Take your picture holding a sign that tells your story, along with the words ‘I am the 99%,'” wrote Daniel Mintz of MoveOn.org.

John Stauber is a longtime critic of organizations like MoveOn.org and Center for American Progress, and founder of the Center for Media and Democracy and co-author of “Toxic Sludge Is Good for You,” a book that exposes how corporations and vested interests work to co-opt movements for change. In an interview, he stated, “Don’t be fooled. This will primarily be an effort to co-opt the language and energy to salvage Obama and the Dem Party. This is how you co-opt movements. The Occupy Wall Streeters are not leader oriented. Van Jones will become the voice of this in the mainstream,”

“The same thing happened to anti-war in 2007. MoveOn.org was, to the mainstream, the voice of that movement,” Stauber continued. “It is easy to read between the lines. For one thing, there is no criticism of Obama in the ‘Reclaim the Dream’ messaging and marketing. No one with a national reputation is going to do anything to undermine his re-election efforts. There is huge money in supporting Obama and nothing but pain and punishment in not – both desperation and self interest are driving this at this point in time.”

As Stauber alluded to, one only has to look a few years down the memory hole to see that, as William Faulkner wrote in “Requiem for a Nun,” “The past is never dead. It’s not even past!”

In an article about how the Democratic Party, teaming up with MoveOn.org and other like-minded apparatchiks, viewed the Iraq war as a “gift” to wield for electoral purposes in the 2006 elections, Stauber wrote, “And how have the Democrats treated their gift now that they control Congress? The Democratic House and Senate have continued to fund the war while posturing against it …”

Later, in that same piece, Stauber juxtaposed the operatives with Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW), an organization that is against imperialistic foreign policy no matter who is in office, writing, “[IVAW] are not the concoction of a liberal think tank or PR firm; they have very little funding; they are not avoiding criticism of Democrats; and they are not playing political games trying to bank-shot Democratic candidates into the White House and Congress in 2008. They are in open non-violent revolt against US foreign policy, criticizing politicians of all stripes who would exploit the war for political gain.”

Fast forward five years and a nearly parallel situation exists. An independent and democratic economic justice movement, ground zero of which exists at the power center of economic injustice, namely Wall Street, has now spread to every corner of the country in some form or fashion within the framework of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

The Democratic Party vultures are waiting to swoop in, steal the thunder and then make sure the focus is on electing Democrats, who are just as much to blame as Republicans for the ascendancy of Wall Street. If anything, they are even more to blame for the pacification role they play in co-opting the overwhelming swath of the left time and time again, no matter what horrible policies they pass.

Will Occupy Wall Street of 2011 be a repeat of the Iraq war of 2006? Similar forces are at bay, that is for certain.

It will all depend on activists deciding whether they choose to be used as a “gift,” or if they choose to remain independent of the forces of co-option.

Act four, to say the least, should be interesting.

http://www.truth-out.org/moveonorg-and-friends-attempt-co-opt-occupy-wall-street-movement/1318259708

“STOP THE MACHINE” OR HOW TO DEMORALIZE A MOVEMENT

About the author: John Murphy was the independent candidate for House of Representatives in the 16th Congressional District of Pennsylvania in 2006 and 2008. He is one of the founding members of the Pennsylvanian Ballot Access Coalition , working to change ballot access laws in Pennsylvania.

“The protest planned by “Stop the Machine” will do more to harm the progressive movement than advance it. The organizers have misunderstood the messages of Gandhi and King. They are trying to make resistance harmless and turn it into a circus sideshow. Both violent and nonviolent tactics are necessary to end the corporate ownership of our government.”

“STOP THE MACHINE” OR HOW TO DEMORALIZE A MOVEMENT

John A. Murphy

04.10.2011

Members of the liberal intelligentsia, the liberal elite, are often heard to say things like “violence begets violence” or “if you use violence against exploiters, you become like the exploiter”. Where they got such notions no one seems to know. They probably picked them up on sale at the same place where they got the ideas that the nonviolent antiwar demonstrations of the 60s and 70s had something to do with ending the Vietnam War or that the nonviolent demonstrations of Martin Luther King resulted in the civil rights legislation of the 60s. The same superstore of revised history also sells an interesting yarn about how the nonviolent demonstrations of Mohandas Gandhi brought about Indian independence. In any event the members of the liberal intelligentsia are the people who have “organized” the “Stop the Machine” demonstration and sleepover scheduled for Washington DC in October.

It is difficult to imagine how it could be said that a woman who blows out the brains of a man who is attempting to rape her is begetting more violence. If someone kicks an IDF soldier in the groin and disarms him, preventing him from murdering a Palestinian family, it is hard to imagine how it could be said that this violence has begotten more violence. Violence, of course, can beget many things. Violence, for example can beget slavery and submission as when a master beats a slave. Some slaves will ultimately fight back, in which case nonviolence will indeed beget more violence; but some slaves will submit the rest of their lives. Some will even create a religion or spirituality that attempts to make a virtue of their submission. Some will write and others repeat that their freedom must not come at the expense of others. Some will speak of the need to love their oppressors. As the Wall Street capitalists have shown us, violence can beget material wealth. Violence can beget a cessation of violence when someone fights off or kills an assailant. But to suggest that violence begets violence as a general rule is clearly absurd. [6]

Equally absurd is the notion that “if you use violence against exploiters, you become like they are”. There is nothing in the real world that lends any credence at all to such a notion but that generally does not stop the people who have taken nonviolence and turned it into the religious cult of anti-violence. Their flawed assertion is based on the equally flawed notion that all violence is the same. Again, it would be obscene to suggest that a woman who kills a man attempting to rape her becomes like a rapist. It is obscene to suggest that the Jews who fought back against their exterminators at Auschwitz and Treblinka became like the Nazis. [6]

The leaders of events like “Stop the Machine” also tell us that violence never accomplishes anything. The tens of millions of Africans killed in the slave trade would be surprised to learn that slavery is not the result of widespread violence. The millions of prisoners stuck in gulags here in the United States and elsewhere would be astounded to discover that they can walk away any time they want, that they are not held in place by violence. Working people have not handed over their wealth because they enjoy being impoverished. Women do not submit to rape just for the hell of it but because of the use or threat of violence. One reason why violence is used so often by those in power is because it works. It works very, very well. Violence, however, can work for liberation as well as for subjugation.

EXPOSING THE GANDHI-KING MYTH

The same people who preach the false gospel that “violence begets violence” tell us that the anti-Vietnam war protests of the 1960s and 1970s ended, or helped to end the war on the people of Southeast Asia. A simple trip into history reveals something quite a bit different. Four students were murdered in 1970 at Kent state University by the National Guard. After that incident the antiwar movement was gutted and slowed dramatically. In 1973 president Nixon ended the draft and with the same stroke of the pen ended what little remained of the antiwar movement but the war continued on for another two years. The Vietnam War came to an end because of superior violence used by the North Vietnamese regular Army against the United States Army. The United States was militarily defeated and that is why the Vietnam War ended.

Martin Luther King was a wonderful man who did much to call the nation’s attention to the Jim Crow laws and to have them abolished. His nonviolent demonstrations however had nothing to do with the policy changes, the civil rights legislation, of the 1960s. Those changes came about due to the violence in the streets by young African-Americans primarily the Panthers in the North and the Deacons in the South. But there was no way that the United States Congress would deal with people like Stokely Carmichael or H Rap Brown so they canonized Dr. King has the champion of civil rights. Even his campus supporters, originally called the “Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee” knew that nonviolence would not achieve their ends so they changed their name to the “Student National Coordinating Committee”. Ralph Abernathy was sure to appear in Congress to take advantage of the most recent street violence. In that way, Martin Luther King can be said to have contributed to the civil rights legislation but certainly not his nonviolent demonstrations. [5]

Similarly, in India, the nonviolent demonstrations of Gandhi came at the end of a 100 year period of violent revolution. Even while Gandhi himself was leading nonviolent demonstrations, other revolutionaries were destroying the infrastructure in India. Great Britain was burdened by the cost of two world wars and simply was no longer able to deal with the destruction caused by the violence of the revolutionaries. Just as the United States used Martin Luther King, so also did Great Britain make use of Gandhi. The British press turned Gandhi into a saint but nonviolent demonstrations only caused the deaths of tens of thousands of Hindus and Muslims since he was added to the committee which ultimately determined the nature of Indian independence.

Nonviolence has never brought about any kind of significant policy change in the United States or anywhere else. There are even members of the liberal elite who will claim that it was the nonviolent boycotting of South Africa which ended, apartheid forgetting all about the violence of the ANC and in particular of Nelson Mandela, who was called a terrorist by the British and is now called a hero and patriot.

Given that nonviolent protests, in and of themselves, have never produced major policy changes, why will all of the big names in the liberal elite, from the ridiculous to the sublime, from Medea Benjamin to Bill Moyer, be attending the “Stop the Machine” charade on October 6 in DC? The answer is disturbingly simple. On the one hand most of these people have actually bought into the revised history of nonviolent demonstrations and secondly, with no intended cynicism, these folks simply miss the real feel-good experience they have gotten from previous outings in Washington. The junket planned by “Stop the Machine” promises to be a particularly superlative feel-good experience featuring not only a carnival atmosphere, complete with an exhibition of real live unemployed people, but with all the warmth and sense of false community created by a sleepover motif.

A FORMULA FOR FAILURE:
CREATING THE CULT OF ANTI-VIOLENCE

There is a formula for this type of spectacle. First there will be the usual concert and then the congregation will be assembled in orderly fashion, listening to a cast of speakers calling for an end to this or that while condemning some lethal government action. They will be carrying signs “demanding” the same thing. The singers will be enunciating, lyrically, the worthiness of the demonstrators’ agenda as well as the plight of the various victims they are here to “defend” and – typically – the whole thing is quietly disbanded with exhortations to the assembly to “keep working” on the matter and to please sign a petition and/or write letters to Congress people requesting that they alter their offending actions. [6]

The “Stop the World” jamboree not only promises to follow this formula but has gone to extreme limits to turn this into a fundamentalist religious service in honor of the deity of anti-violence. Yes, they have taken the simple tactic of nonviolence and turned it into the cult of anti-violence! The “Stop the Machine” website is downright frightening; it might have passed for a bit of fiction from George Orwell. Not only are these people suggesting that this demonstration be nonviolent, the attendees are required to take an oath to that effect! [1]

But that is only the beginning! To ensure that no one breaks the anti-violent rules of the “organizers” there will be special marshals carrying “peace cameras” [2] and attendees are encouraged to bring their own cameras with them so that they can snitch on their fellow demonstrators who might break away from the orthodox fundamentalism of this perversion of resistance. Those who dare depart from this orthodoxy are of course branded “agent provocateurs” [2]. Yet that is not the end of the nightmare. There is a request that members of the congregation undergo “nonviolence training” while all have been assured that the entire carnival has been choreographed with the police. This is serious. This stuff is right out of the “How to Build a Cult and Recruit Members” handbook.

MAKING RESISTANCE HARMLESS

The whole atmosphere of “Stop the Machine” is shrouded in a kind of magical thinking which has given rise to propositions such as:
• Thou shalt turn thy “anger at injustice into a positive, non-violent force”.
• Thou shalt “embrace an attitude, as conveyed through [thy] words, symbols and actions, of openness, friendliness, and respect toward all people encountered, including police officers and military personnel”.
• Thou shalt “agree to be obedient to the organizers” of the action or be cast into exterior darkness. [3] Of course there will be:
• No destruction or vandalism of non-sentient objects; • No running or other “threatening” motions; • No insulting or swearing; • No verbal or physical assaults on those who oppose or disagree with us (i.e., police) “even if they assault us.” [3]

Getting arrested is all part of the act – the brass ring, so to speak. The police have told the demonstrators precisely which laws they can break and the folks taking place in this modern day revival meeting have been told that everyone will get a warning prior to being arrested so that everyone knows what to do, on cue. Just as the people who participated in the Keystone pipeline demonstration a few weeks ago were given the opportunity to have their pictures taken with their respective arresting police officers,[4] the same photo ops will be given, free of charge, to the folks in the “Stop the Machine” entourage.

When the nonviolent offenders are taken giddily off to the hoosegow, there will be attorneys there to represent them and make sure they are properly charged; there will be other people to provide food; other people to provide any bail necessary and people who have been designated to provide transportation for those happy campers who have nonviolently chained themselves to the White House and paid the unspeakable price of being arrested for disorderly conduct. This should prove to be a real feel-good experience for the attendees and the vicarious who will watch at home on Democracy Now.

“STOP THE MACHINE” COLLUDES WITH THE CORPORATE OWNED GOVERNMENT

What makes this demonstration so dangerous is not just its mystical believe in the power of nonviolence but that the organizers have even restricted their concrete, nonviolent activities to limits sanctioned by the state (the police). This identifies the protesters as endeavoring to displace resistance with opposition thereby turning the left into nothing more than a variant of “Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition”. This attempt at disarming the left, while attempting to pacify resistance, is the goal of the very system which “Stop the Machine” purports to be “resisting” and puts them in direct collusion with that system.

How did such an incredible state of affairs come to be? How is it that a demonstration will take place in Washington which has no measurable, hence achievable goals, no strategy, no direction, no vision, no mission and no discernible leadership? Did somebody deliberately start out by saying, in the fashion of the old Mickey Rooney/Judy Garland movies, “hey kids let’s put on a show”? Did they deliberately start out to put together an event which does literally everything wrong?

Even the very place itself is wrong! One of the statements the group makes is that it plans to “kick off a powerful and sustained nonviolent resistance to the corporate criminals that dominate our government”. If they are out to “resist” the “corporate criminals”, what are they doing in Washington? Why are they not on Wall Street? Washington, the government, is simply the collective hit man for the top 1,500 multinational corporations. If the corporate criminals are to be symbolically resisted by a protest in Washington, one might expect that the demonstration would at least take place on K Street.

A quick look at the qualifications of the organizers gives a clear indication as to how this pre-Halloween party has materialized in such a puerile fashion. Here is a list of qualifications, taken from the resumes of the “Stop the Machine” “organizers”:

• long-time community organizer and peace and justice activist • a full-time peace and justice activist who serves on national boards or committees • She dreams of a world where war is no more, • 30-plus years of activism • organized and participated in protests for health care, peace and economic justice • a longtime antiwar and social justice activist • anti-war advocate since being chased off the campus of Cal State Northridge, California in 1968 • proud member of Healthcare-NOW!
• Full time organizer and activist for 11 years.
• a proud loudmouthed feminist and rabble-rouser • a recovering attorney and full-time, rogue peace and justice activist • a licensed addictions and domestic violence counselor • more than 30 years’ experience of writing, speaking and advocacy across a broad range of issues around peace, justice and democracy[8]

Not one MBA in the group! In fact, if the organizers had been told that they should have an MBA or two on their planning committee, they probably would have objected to such a notion since, after all, MBAs work in the business world! Conflating the business world with the corporate dominance of government is a common mistake made by people employed in public service or who have spent their lives as mushroom covered “activists”! MBAs are trained in strategic planning and, just like everyone else in American society, they run the gamut from devotees of Ayn Rand to a variety of anti-capitalists and Marxists. In any event, with qualifications like the “organizers” boast, it is no wonder why “Stop the Machine” has no goals, no direction, no purpose, no leadership, no vision, no mission and no discernible leadership!

“Do your symbolic duty” the organizers tell the feel-good group of nonviolent revelers, “then you can devote yourself to the prefiguration of the revolutionary future society which you think will replace the present social order, having persuaded the multinational corporations to voluntarily abandon their control of our government through the sheer moral force of your arguments”. The participants in this demonstration, which is barely even the husk of opposition, are every bit as guilty of global violence as are the perpetrators themselves.

PACIFYING RESISTANCE

The purveyors of nonviolence always promise that the harsh realities of state power can be transcended by way of good feelings and purity of purpose rather than by the necessary violence required for self-defense. These anti-violent fundamentalists, with all the force of the medieval alchemists, tell us that the negativity of the modern corporate owned government will atrophy through defection and neglect once there is a sufficiently positive social vision to take its place.

Violence is neither morally good nor bad; it is simply a tactic. It is a most useful tactic when employed for purposes of self-defense and following the same criteria as set down for the conduct of just wars.[7] The multinational corporations which are controlling our government not only want the liberty of the American people but their lives as well. They would see to it that Americans have the lowest paid jobs possible, that that have no healthcare other than that which they can purchase, that they would have no free public education. In short they would foreclose on lives as well as houses. Those who do not see the threat posed by these multinational corporations as mortal and deserving of the most efficient and effective means of opposition must be living in an alternate universe or have deeply imbibed of the anti-violent fundamentalists’ Kool-Aid served up by people like the “Stop the Machine” “organizers” .

The “Stop the Machine” demonstration will have a major demoralizing effect on those in the left who are serious about resisting corporate fascism. It is reasonable that they will see this demonstration as just another symbolic gesture in a long line of failed nonviolent demonstrations stretching back nearly a half-century. False hopes combined with naïve ideas are the parents not only of demoralization and frustration but of resignation. The best possible outcome for this misadventure would be that it receives little or no press and that it is forgotten as quickly as possible so that others might model future resistance efforts on those exhibited by American trade unions in the early 20th century.

THE INEFFECTIVENESS OF NONVIOLENT OPPOSITION

The thought of nonviolent opposition to our corporate owned government is as ludicrous as nonviolent opposition to National Socialism itself. One of the smartest things the Nazis did was make it so that every step of the way it was in the Jews’ rational best interest not to violently resist. Many Jews had the hope – and this hope was cultivated by the Nazis – that if they played along, followed the rules laid down by those in power, that their lives would get no worse, that they would not be murdered.[6] They were even told by their own leaders not to violently resist getting an ID card or they might get killed; don’t violently resist the Nuremberg Laws or they might get killed; don’t violently resist getting into a cattle car or say might get killed; don’t violently resist getting into the showers or they might get killed.

There is something important to remember however, the Jews who participated in the Warsaw Ghetto uprising, including those who went on what they thought were suicide missions, had a higher rate of survival than those went nonviolently into the showers. Never forget that. The obligation of those who resist the corporate ownership of our government is not to be personally pure. “The obligation is to affect measurable change.” [6]

There will never be a group of nonviolent demonstrators who will force American corporations to give up their control of government by the sheer force of their moral argument.

Imagine that Ted Bundy is still alive and it is 1976 again. It would be difficult to comprehend that someone would seriously believe that they could sit down with Ted Bundy and talk him out of committing his gruesome murders and unspeakable obscenities. Again, imagine that the suave, urbane, erudite fictional character, Hannibal Lecter, could be real for a little while. Once more it would be difficult to comprehend that someone would seriously believe that they could talk some sense into Dr. Lecter. A few minutes into the conversation the good doctor would have already ordered the fava beans and Chianti and the anti-violence fundamentalist would be on the menu.

WHAT MUST BE DONE

What should a real resistance movement do to end the corporate control of our government which spreads war and misery on a global scale, sacrifices the economic well-being of its own people to that of corporate greed while eroding its citizens’ civil liberties? Would it organize nonviolent demonstrations? Would its members put together strongly worded protest signs? Would they write letters to the editor? Would they sign thousands of petitions to the President and the Congress? Would they vote for the lesser of two war criminals?

The type of action required is what is usually called guerrilla warfare or urban guerrilla warfare. This would entail organizing groups consisting of no more than 12 to 15 people. Appropriate targets would be identified; participants would do what is required and disappear into the night. While this type of political violence is called “terrorism” by the government, it must be understood that one person’s terrorist is another person’s patriot. Nelson Mandela comes to mind immediately. What is definitely not required is an attempt to attack the police or the military or even the CEOs and major stockholders of the top 1,500 corporations. The attack would be on the corporate property and so-called private property of those people.

Corporations make their major policy decisions taking into consideration a cost-benefit analysis performed on those policies. As long as it is cost-effective for corporations to own our government, they will continue to do so. The only way that corporations would relinquish their ownership of government would be when the cost of ownership becomes too high. It is the job of a resistance movement to change the balance of that ratio; to increase the cost by massive destruction of property. Unfortunately, the “Stop the Machine” organizers are more interested in discovering what kind of politics in which they can engage that will both allow them to posture as progressives and allow them to avoid incurring harm to themselves.

How long would Caterpillar continue selling their equipment to Israel so it can be used to destroy Palestinian homes once a resistance movement starts blowing up their machinery or some of their manufacturing plants?

How long would take corporate America to get the message if there were massive violent attacks against the corporate property and so-called personal property of the senior managers and major stockholders of the top 1500 US corporations?

*****
John Murphy was the independent candidate for House of Representatives in the 16th Congressional District of Pennsylvania in 2006 and 2008. He is one of the founding members of the Pennsylvanian Ballot Access Coalition , working to change ballot access laws in Pennsylvania. He can be reached at: johnamurphy.

[1] Stop the Machine! Create a New World!
http://october2011.org/statement
[2] Facebook Statement about Provocateurs http://october2011.org/blogs/margaret-flowers/facebook-statement-about-provocateurs

[3] Non-violence Guidelines and Principles http://october2011.org/pages/non-violence-guidelines-and-principles

[4] Daryl Hannah Arrested At Keystone XL Pipeline Protest http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/30/daryl-hannah-arrested-keystone-protest_n_942072.html

[5] Nonviolence: Its Histories and Myths Professor Michael Neumann, http://tamilnation.co/ideology/neuman_on_non_violence.htm

[6] Pacifism as Pathology
Reflections on the Role of Armed Struggle in North America Ward Churchill Introduction by Derrick Jensen AK Press,
2007

[7] Can Terrorism be Justified?
Tomis Kapitan
April 28, 2007
http://www.niu.edu/phil/~kapitan/pdf/CanTerrorismbeJustified.pdf

[8] “Stop the Machine”: About Us
http://october2011.org/about

‘Rain & Fire’ – A Brilliant Statement from a UK FAI sector

Rain & Fire

This text was written during the course of the growing European social war, and our attempts to situate ourselves in the context of that, whilst in the midst of rising fascism, complicity from most of the society and a fractured and divisive anti-capitalist ‘movement’. These scant few pages cannot express the complexity of the various situations being described in any great depth, but we write so that other rebels at the edges can know how it is for us here. As we were putting the final touches to the text, cities in the UK exploded and remain volatile. However this is not an analysis of the riots – this is a text from inside the social conditions which gave rise to the insurrection.

This text has been collaboratively written by many individuals in our network over a period of discussion, planning and attack. We have been brief in our communiques so far, but we felt it was time to write something longer.

“Why are we writing?” Because we know how important it has been for us to hear the knocks on the wall from other renegades in other cells, and because we would like to reach out beyond the people we already know, beyond the realities we have lived in, created, abandoned or remain tied to. As revolutionaries, we are highly critical of these realities and of ourselves, and we write because just, as individuals, we strive to be ‘better’ than we are, we also desire for this world to be better than it is. We are open to the fallacy of our opinions and wish to surpass our expectations, such as they are. We also try to communicate with those outside our circles, and we attempt to staunch the tendency towards self-referentialism which is endemic to many forms of communication. In the end, we have to accept that this text is written to persons unknown and that wherever it is read and whoever it reaches, there will be those who will have an understanding of what is written here – and this is for them.

There is no longer any sure statement that can be made about this changing world, which catches fire more and more, everyday.

The present day United Kingdom is a controlled theme-park, covered in surveillance cameras, vehicle tracking, identical housing estates, post-industrial zones and sprawling road and train networks. There is virtually no wilderness left, the powerful and rich control the ‘countryside’, as much as, or even more than the cities, and there is little freedom beyond the mainstream, unless you take it – the same as anywhere else. The prison of everyday life is so total here that the only choice remaining is its complete destruction.

We welcomed the renewed call by the Conspiracy of Cells of Fire / Informal Anarchist Federation for a world-wide informal anarchist structure based on revolutionary solidarity and direct action: the International Revolutionary Front. As we continue to develop our own project of revolutionary organisation, we affirm the global informal ‘network’ or ‘federation’ of revolutionary groups in existence who are developing, encouraging and participating in uncontrollable confrontation against State and Capital, whilst organising and developing their own initiatives of attack: this is our signal of collaboration.

There has been a significant upsurge in attacks against prison, financial, police and communications targets in the UK, but the obvious truth is that these attacks are few in relation to the task to be undertaken, and the level of engagement with the enemy is still in the early stages of its development.

Over the last two years we have begun a newly co-ordinated revolutionary project. It is our way of starting something new. Something that won’t just disappear like words against the wind. We are some of those who think that the possibility of a conscious, cohesive social revolution involving a critical mass from the general population of the UK is frankly remote. However, we think – and have seen – that widespread chaos and social insurgency are inevitable, and from this, new and better forms of human values could emerge.

If we were to reflect on human life experience – both individual and collective – we would perhaps understand the wisdom that sometimes it takes a total breakdown for things to change. Of course, some people are scared of change, of the unknown. People limp along miserably in all sorts of dysfunctional conditions for years – relationships, jobs, towns etc. – rather than face the necessary and radical alteration of those conditions into a future they cannot yet imagine. And because society is made up of individual human beings, then society is no different. People lap up the distractions being offered – TV, consumables, mainstream cultures, drugs, subcultures, actions, gatherings, spiritual panaceas, anything… so long as they can put off confronting the essential emptiness of everyday life. We are living in the midst of a culture where endemic use of anti-depressants, for example – as Aldous Huxley predicted in Brave New World – keep people from changing what is making them unhappy and instead make them accept what it is that is making them unhappy. When the individuals in a society are struggling just to get up in the morning because the system exploits them every minute, these people have no energy to revolt against the system. They are caught in its claws. They don’t even seem to recognise this. The totality of this techno-industrial society enslaves them into patterns of repetition, damaging themselves and each other, oppressed on the outside and repressed on the inside. The fundamental distinction between inside and outside prison does not seem to exist in the same way any more: daily life attempts to subject us to a regime of control and routine in every aspect.

In the foyers of the supermarkets and the shopping malls, in pubs and bars, places of work and transport hubs we find, more often than not, those whom the consumer democracy has bought off with the looted capital of those less fortunate. Regularly, we are in the presence of willing captives, of society’s sickness, of reactionary grasping for the means of survival – the exploited against the exploited. People have made a fool’s bargain and have handed over their health, intelligence, curiosity, sense of solidarity, personal authority, and the earth and all that lives and grows on it in exchange for the latest technology, fast food, flash car or social network.

Although present reality shows us an intensification of social conflict with some promising characteristics, we do not yet see ourselves standing amongst a potentially revolutionary mass. We appear to be standing knee-deep in the bloated carcass of a dying civilisation.

Almost seven billion people across the world are hooked into a genocidal and tyrannical system that has insinuated itself as a life-support machine. Civilisation gives the impression that its destruction would mean the end of all life; however an extinction wave is already happening which, if it did continue, would have that exact result, accompanied by near total-victory for the capitalist techno-industrial-military system and the financial power which underpins it.

Environmental catastrophe roars across flooded continents; vast tsunami, extensive desertification and decimated forests. The modern totalitarian nation-states and their imperialist groupings like the G8, G20, NATO and so on, are committed to the murderously terrorist capitalist system as their vision of the future. To a future where everything and everyone is a commodity logged and valued in a mechanical world devoid of any possibility of wildness and freedom. A world of perfect control and domestication. An impossible world. A world which every sane human being and wild creature already fights against – from each and every area regardless of race, creed or species.

We are in the midst of an unprecedented ecological collapse. Various tendencies in the scientific and political communities have spent many years arguing amongst themselves as to whether global warming is or is not a result of human behaviour, citing natural disasters and mass die-offs in pre-history. These arguments are now irrelevant. It is undeniable that grotesque species extinction, habitat loss, light/noise and air/land/oceanic pollution on a worldwide scale, desertification, human encroachment on wilderness are a direct result of human attitudes and economic greed. For decades, changing this was a possibility, now it is too late.

We are witnessing our species suicidally contaminate and destroy its own habitat and that of every other species on the planet: an expanding population which prioritises itself and its own prescribed and enforced lifestyle above all other considerations, living in complete disharmony with the natural world and destroying the fragile eco-system upon which we depend.

The built environments we inhabit are unsuitable even for humans. Land that used to be covered in forest, supporting a wide range of species, becomes ever more covered in concrete. Every available piece of ‘wasteland’ is being sold off for development. Civilisation is genocidal, homicidal, ecocidal and suicidal. From poverty, abuse and domestic unhappiness to the reckless drivers risking pile-ups to get home a couple of minutes faster, to the regular ethnic cleansings and the total pillage of the environment in the scramble for money and control through the securing of natural resources to exploit. This is a violent system, and millions are dying as we speak, here and everywhere: of obesity and malnutrition, of traffic accidents, industrial diseases, war, substance abuse, depression and loneliness. Meanwhile, the comfortable arrange their knives and forks and settle down in front of the television; their empty, meaningless conversations blurring into hollow silence.

These modern societies have come to mean that dreams and desires are warped and dictated from birth (work ethics, conformity to roles, competition, separation, jealousy, class and social deference to authority, the nuclear family, domestication); so much so that it is hard to even know what our unconstrained lives might look like when the State and Capital’s projects and rule are finally rejected en masse.

In Britain, there is a massive amount of class anger encountered every day, but until 7th August 2011 when rioting erupted in London and swept through the country, there has been barely any widespread manifestation of this anger against the capitalist system or government.

There is a sheepish terror amongst the people here that gets into the bones, and although there is a desire for destruction and for attack, there is also a deep fear that paralyses. A consensual censorship exists, between almost every strata and structure of society, that prevents even the ability to express and manifest dissent unless it is within permitted parameters. In such an advanced surveillance society, when the risk of getting caught even for writing some rebellious words on a wall is so seemingly great, it is easy to give into the fear and to imagine that it is a fact that you are going to get caught. The surveillance technology is extensive and reaches inside – if you let it do so. That’s why we love the ‘feral underclass’ who the politicians and their police despise, those who lost their fear from growing up in a police-state – because that is what Britain is, a police-state.

And like any police-state, it only exists because of a vast consensus of subservience from the society. Who has let the social terrain become overrun with surveillance technology? Who has become the eyes and ears of the State? Who turns their own children in to the authorities? Who has watched the Muslims and immigrants become vilified without acting? Who has let the police become embedded in all aspects of the ‘community’? Who has accepted their own powerlessness and swallowed the lies of the media, allowing the politicians to manipulate them and the bankers to rob them? It is the “citizens” themselves.

The reactionary mass of people here are lost in comfortable illusions, bought off by the delights of consumerism. They put out of their minds any actual realities of oppression or exploitation. Of course, they feel deeply the misery of their daily grind, but here they make the bosses’ choice: to be angry with the immigrants, the impoverished and the marginalised, otherwise amusing themselves with the sports section, the lottery, the televised media spectacle of rivalry and competition. Benefiting from and perpetuating a system of global violence, we have little more than scorn for the waste these people make of their lives.

At the same time, the food prices go up, the fuel price goes up, the wages go down, pensions and benefits are cut, mass redundancies are effected (some staff to be rehired if they apply for their old job again, but only at a lower wage). There will be no more inheritance. There will be no more security, even for the nuclear families who bought into the dream of the faded Empire, rotting in sub-standard housing surrounded by decay and breakdown. We see how the technological-capitalist system ties people into ‘needing’ the computer, mobile telephone, car, TV, because putting those things aside means social and cultural isolation and no opiate to bury the alienation, misery and desperation. Nothing exists but a trace of a way of life promised to an elite. The majority are living in debt, and/or hand to mouth; the fortunate are living on their reserves; and the very few are living off everyone else, enjoying the present and securing the future for themselves.

We act against the State and the symbols of the State for many reasons. And of course, one of those reasons is a desire to move beyond ourselves and our small circles. We hope that these attacks will resonate with others and will spread, and indeed they have.

We are not so stupid that we think our attacks – however worthy the targets – will alone bring down this system. We understand that there are other social factors which are necessary. We know that the process of planning and carrying out attacks changes our immediate social relations and our relation with our own sense of self and personal power, so that gradually our actions become bolder, wilder, harder to ignore. This process also changes the general atmosphere, creating an environment where more is possible because less is impossible. We have contributed to a whole plethora of anti-system activities, of which repeated attacks by smaller and larger groups over the past year on infrastructure, banks, and prison institutions have played a part.

With all the billions of people who live in the world, there will never be a time when a particular act against the State and Capital is felt by all or even the majority of people to be appropriate, ‘good’ or desirable. Our small affinity groups – of two, three or more people self-organised into a larger informal structure – simply act according to their own rage, their own analysis, their own choice and at their own risk. To pretend to be someone other than we are is useless, dishonest and lacking in integrity, a posture which could only slowly devastate us and ultimately any collective project arising from this.

By publicising our attacks, we hope to inspire unknown combatants and to disseminate those methods so that they are easy to reproduce by others. This is why we make sure always to communicate them through the independent media, as otherwise there is a media black-out on reporting the claims of sabotage and covering subversive activity in this country, preferring, as it does, stories centred around personalities and the seemingly designed-to-be-unchangeable current political structures. It is important for us who wish to confront and bring down Capital to know that others are attacking the enemy, in order to dismantle any sense of isolation and powerlessness. It is vital to organise, communicate and co-ordinate attacks.

We are very proud of the relationships we have built as individuals together through our project of destruction, as we are of each of our actions, even those that did not meet our expectations. Each of us are individuals who believe that the fundamental base of a strong and healthy way of life is comprised by the individuals themselves, in their decisions, choices and values that go towards freedom and responsibility.

Our project is to quicken the breakdown of society. As revolutionaries, we are a minority – but do not say that we are few. We don’t make predictions as to how society will re-form after the breakdown, although, of course, as anarchists, there are some basic ways we want things to change. And those dreams coincide with those of revolutionaries throughout human history, and indeed they are being realised already across the world.

We are bored to death with reflection, statement and opinion – and even of this analysis – on the condition of this society. We must only attack and destroy – which means using revolutionary violence, in our hearts and in our hands, until our freedom to act is permanent. This continuous project of attack is in order also to break down our fears and to heighten the tension that exists, to give it expression. To understand that in a police-state and surveillance society where fear and paralysis are a daily condition, it is still possible to revolt and to attack, to overcome those that have inserted themselves into positions of power based on the obedience of the crowd.

We are poised at an exciting time in history, although it seems at times like a most relentlessly depressing one. As the material base of people’s lives is tipped into ever increasing fragility and as the sensation of daily precarity and inequality grows, the results are entirely unpredictable (as we have seen here this August in the widespread violent uprising) and it is exactly at such times that even small acts can have the most unpredictable effect.

We want to contribute to the opening up of new possibilities. In a highly symbolic, abstracted and post-modern culture and way of life, and in a situation where even work now is largely providing service and information, there seems to be no end to the targets we can attack – our actions are themselves an exploration. Of what is worthwhile to strike and what is not.

Corporations and government targets are attacked across the world in coordinated and constant acts of direct action. Land and property are occupied in defiance of speculators and landlords. Animals are liberated, bio-science laboratories burnt down. Transgenic crops trashed and business people intimidated. Banks and courthouses are blown up, judges shot and stabbed. Police and their stations are attacked with Molotovs, sticks, dynamite, firearms. Energy supplies are disrupted, television infrastructure attacked, internet cables and mobile-phone masts sabotaged. Supermarkets and department stores are looted and their products distributed. People go on strike, blockade the economy and occupy their places of wage-slavery; ‘labour’ disappears into the generalised insurrection.

Prisoners rebel and overtake their guards, some escape or are freed by their compatriots on the ‘outside’. Communiques of revolutionary international solidarity are circulated by anti-authoritarian, anti-capitalist and anarchist groups of the new urban guerilla war; objectives are discussed, concepts exchanged, methods revealed, tactics refined and words of armed joy and love spoken. A sprawling economic and technological apparatus of social control stutters in seizure and fragmentation.

A message to all those who have not yet begun the fight but see the looming clash on the horizon: prepare yourselves, because there is a fierce conflict ahead for the future of our changing world. And this planet is ours. Ours, like the streets of the cities in which we set our barricades. Ours, like the houses, corners and cafés where we meet our friends and accomplices. Ours, like the stones we throw and the fires we set. Ours, like the infinite anarchic dream which wrote itself into existence.

This is a new era of international urban low-intensity war, and our insurrectional project is forged from the multiple efforts of many autonomous and independent combative groups, developing new lines of attack and coordination whilst retaining the individualist character of their own principle concerns and objectives.

It’s not enough to rot our dreams with the incontinence of inaction. The future is yours with every dream you make into reality, and every refusal you make concrete. Whether locked down in jail, on the street, or imprisoned in the family or workplace, each moment of your life depends on your ability to scheme and rebel against anybody and anything which tries to put their authoritative hand upon you; you are the future and the world is yours.

We consider our network a section of the Informal Anarchist Federation / Earth Liberation Front / International Revolutionary Front

We send our solidarity and respect to all those fighting against the system around the world and here in the UK. Our love and drive for freedom to all the comrades in prison and also the dignified prisoners who are in rebellion.

International Informal Anarchist Federation / FAI

http://325.nostate.net/?p=3032

The People’s Movement has been Hijacked – Manufacturing Dissent

“Manufacturing Dissent”: the Anti-globalization Movement is Funded by the Corporate Elites

Michel Chossudovsky and General Joe | 23.09.2010 04:31 | Analysis | Anti-militarism | Social Struggles | World

“How is the process of manufacturing dissent achieved?
Essentially by “funding dissent”, namely by channelling financial resources from those who are the object of the protest movement to those who are involved in organizing the protest movement.
Co-optation is not limited to buying the favors of politicians. The economic elites –which control major foundations– also oversee the funding of numerous NGOs and civil society organizations, which historically have been involved in the protest movement against the established economic and social order. The programs of many NGOs and people’s movements rely heavily on both public as well as private funding agencies including the Ford, Rockefeller, McCarthy foundations, among others.
The anti-globalization movement is opposed to Wall Street and the Texas oil giants controlled by Rockefeller, et al. Yet the foundations and charities of Rockefeller et al will generously fund progressive anti-capitalist networks as well as environmentalists (opposed to Big Oil) with a view to ultimately overseeing and shaping their various activities.”

The People’s Movement has been Hijacked
by Michel Chossudovsky

“Everything the [Ford] Foundation did could be regarded as “making the World safe for capitalism”, reducing social tensions by helping to comfort the afflicted, provide safety valves for the angry, and improve the functioning of government (McGeorge Bundy, National Security Advisor to Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson (1961-1966), President of the Ford Foundation, (1966-1979))???”By providing the funding and the policy framework to many concerned and dedicated people working within the non-profit sector, the ruling class is able to co-opt leadership from grassroots communities, … and is able to make the funding, accounting, and evaluation components of the work so time consuming and onerous that social justice work is virtually impossible under these conditions” (Paul Kivel, You call this Democracy, Who Benefits, Who Pays and Who Really Decides, 2004, p. 122 )???”Under the New World Order, the ritual of inviting “civil society” leaders into the inner circles of power –while simultaneously repressing the rank and file– serves several important functions. First, it says to the World that the critics of globalization “must make concessions” to earn the right to mingle. Second, it conveys the illusion that while the global elites should –under what is euphemistically called democracy– be subject to criticism, they nonetheless rule legitimately. And third, it says “there is no alternative” to globalization: fundamental change is not possible and the most we can hope is to engage with these rulers in an ineffective “give and take”. ??While the “Globalizers” may adopt a few progressive phrases to demonstrate they have good intentions, their fundamental goals are not challenged. And what this “civil society mingling” does is to reinforce the clutch of the corporate establishment while weakening and dividing the protest movement. An understanding of this process of co-optation is important, because tens of thousands of the most principled young people in Seattle, Prague and Quebec City [1999-2001] are involved in the anti-globalization protests because they reject the notion that money is everything, because they reject the impoverishment of millions and the destruction of fragile Earth so that a few may get richer.
This rank and file and some of their leaders as well, are to be applauded. But we need to go further. We need to challenge the right of the “Globalizers” to rule. This requires that we rethink the strategy of protest. Can we move to a higher plane, by launching mass movements in our respective countries, movements that bring the message of what globalization is doing, to ordinary people? For they are the force that must be mobilized to challenge those who plunder the Globe.” (Michel Chossudovsky, The Quebec Wall, April 2001)
The term “manufacturing consent” was initially coined by Edward S Herman and Noam Chomsky.
“Manufacturing consent” describes a propaganda model used by the corporate media to sway public opinion and “inculcate individuals with values and beliefs…”:
The mass media serve as a system for communicating messages and symbols to the general populace. It is their function to amuse, entertain, and inform, and to inculcate individuals with the values, beliefs, and codes of behavior that will integrate them into the institutional structures of the larger society. In a world of concentrated wealth and major conflicts of class interest, to fulfill this role requires systematic propaganda. (Manufacturing Consent by Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky)
“Manufacturing consent” implies manipulating and shaping public opinion. It establishes conformity and acceptance to authority and social hierarchy. It seeks compliance to an established social order. “Manufacturing consent” describes the submission of public opinion to the mainstream media narrative, to its lies and fabrications.
“Manufacturing dissent”??In this article, we focus on a related concept, namely the process of “manufacturing dissent” (rather than “consent”), which plays a decisive role in serving the interests of the ruling class.
Under contemporary capitalism, the illusion of democracy must prevail. It is in the interest of the corporate elites to accept dissent and protest as a feature of the system inasmuch as they do not threaten the established social order. The purpose is not to repress dissent, but, on the contrary, to shape and mould the protest movement, to set the outer limits of dissent.
To maintain their legitimacy, the economic elites favor limited and controlled forms of opposition, with a view to preventing the development of radical forms of protest, which might shake the very foundations and institutions of global capitalism. In other words, “manufacturing dissent” acts as a “safety valve”, which protects and sustains the New World Order.
To be effective, however, the process of “manufacturing dissent” must be carefully regulated and monitored by those who are the object of the protest movement.
“Funding Dissent”
How is the process of manufacturing dissent achieved?
Essentially by “funding dissent”, namely by channelling financial resources from those who are the object of the protest movement to those who are involved in organizing the protest movement.
Co-optation is not limited to buying the favors of politicians. The economic elites –which control major foundations– also oversee the funding of numerous NGOs and civil society organizations, which historically have been involved in the protest movement against the established economic and social order. The programs of many NGOs and people’s movements rely heavily on both public as well as private funding agencies including the Ford, Rockefeller, McCarthy foundations, among others.
The anti-globalization movement is opposed to Wall Street and the Texas oil giants controlled by Rockefeller, et al. Yet the foundations and charities of Rockefeller et al will generously fund progressive anti-capitalist networks as well as environmentalists (opposed to Big Oil) with a view to ultimately overseeing and shaping their various activities.
The mechanisms of “manufacturing dissent” require a manipulative environment, a process of arm-twisting and subtle cooptation of individuals within progressive organizations, including anti-war coalitions, environmentalists and the anti-globalization movement.
Whereas the mainstream media “manufactures consent”, the complex network of NGOs (including segments of the alternative media) are used by the corporate elites to mould and manipulate the protest movement.
Following the deregulation of the global financial system in the 1990s and the rapid enrichment of the financial establishment, funding through foundations and charities has skyrocketed. In a bitter irony, part of the fraudulent financial gains on Wall Street in recent years have been recycled to the elites’ tax exempt foundations and charities. These windfall financial gains have not only been used to buy out politicians, they have also been channelled to NGOs, research institutes, community centres, church groups, environmentalists, alternative media, human rights groups, etc. “Manufactured dissent” also applies to “corporate left” and “progressive media” funded by NGOs or directly by the foundations.
The inner objective is to “manufacture dissent” and establish the boundaries of a “politically correct” opposition. In turn, many NGOs are infiltrated by informants often acting on behalf of western intelligence agencies. Moreover, an increasingly large segment of the progressive alternative news media on the internet has become dependent on funding from corporate foundations and charities.
Piecemeal Activism
The objective of the corporate elites has been to fragment the people’s movement into a vast “do it yourself” mosaic. War and globalization are no longer in the forefront of civil society activism. Activism tends to be piecemeal. There is no integrated anti-globalization anti-war movement. The economic crisis is not seen as having a relationship to the US led war.
Dissent has been compartmentalized. Separate “issue oriented” protest movements (e.g. environment, anti-globalization, peace, women’s rights, climate change) are encouraged and generously funded as opposed to a cohesive mass movement. This mosaic was already prevalent in the counter G7 summits and People’s Summits of the 1990s.
The Anti-Globalization Movement
The Seattle 1999 counter-summit is invariably upheld as a triumph for the anti-globalization movement: “a historic coalition of activists shut down the World Trade Organization summit in Seattle, the spark that ignited a global anti-corporate movement.” (See Naomi Klein, Copenhagen: Seattle Grows Up, The Nation, November 13, 2009).
Seattle was an indeed an important crossroads in the history of the mass movement. Over 50,000 people from diverse backgrounds, civil society organizations, human rights, labor unions, environmentalists had come together in a common pursuit. Their goal was to forecefully dismantle the neoliberal agenda including its institutional base.
But Seattle also marked a major reversal. With mounting dissent from all sectors of society, the official WTO Summit desperately needed the token participation of civil society leaders “on the inside”, to give the appearance of being “democratic” on the outside.
While thousands of people had converged on Seattle, what occurred behind the scenes was a de facto victory for neoliberalism. A handful of civil society organizations, formally opposed the WTO had contributed to legitimizing the WTO’s global trading architecture. Instead of challenging the WTO as an an illegal intergovernmental body, they agreed to a pre-summit dialogue with the WTO and Western governments. “Accredited NGO participants were invited to mingle in a friendly environment with ambassadors, trade ministers and Wall Street tycoons at several of the official events including the numerous cocktail parties and receptions.” (Michel Chossudovsky, Seattle and Beyond: Disarming the New World Order , Covert Action Quarterly, November 1999, See Ten Years Ago: “Manufacturing Dissent” in Seattle).
The hidden agenda was to weaken and divide the protest movement and orient the anti-globalization movement into areas that would not directly threaten the interests of the business establishment.
Funded by private foundations (including Ford, Rockefeller, Rockefeller Brothers, Charles Stewart Mott, The Foundation for Deep Ecology), these “accredited” civil society organizations had positioned themselves as lobby groups, acting formally on behalf of the people’s movement. Led by prominent and committed activists, their hands were tied. They ultimately contributed (unwittingly) to weakening the anti-globalization movement by accepting the legitimacy of what was essentially an illegal organization. (The 1994 Marrakech Summit agreement which led to the creation of the WTO on January 1, 1995). (Ibid)
The NGO leaders were fully aware as to where the money was coming from. Yet within the US and European NGO community, the foundations and charities are considered to be independent philanthropic bodies, separate from the corporations; namely the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation, for instance, is considered to be separate and distinct from the Rockefeller family empire of banks and oil companies.
With salaries and operating expenses depending on private foundations, it became an accepted routine: In a twisted logic, the battle against corporate capitalism was to be be fought using the funds from the tax exempt foundations owned by corporate capitalism.
The NGOs were caught in a straightjacket; their very existence depended on the foundations. Their activities were closely monitored. In a twisted logic, the very nature of anti-capitalist activism was indirectly controlled by the capitalists through their independent foundations.
“Progressive Watchdogs”
In this evolving saga, the corporate elites whose interests are duly served by the IMF, the World Bank and the WTO, will readily fund (through their various foundations and charities) organizations which are at the forefront of the protest movement against the WTO and the Washington based international financial institutions.
Supported by foundation money, various “watchdogs” were set up by the NGOs to monitor the implementation of neoliberal policies, without however raising the broader issue of how the Bretton Woods twins and the WTO, through their policies, had contributed to the impoverishment of millions of people.
The Structural Adjustment Participatory Review Network (SAPRIN) was established by Development Gap, a USAID and World Bank funded NGO based in Washington DC.
Amply documented, the imposition of the IMF-World Bank Structural Adjustment Program (SAP) on developing countries constitutes a blatant form of interference in the internal affairs of sovereign states on behalf of creditor institutions.
Instead of challenging the legitimacy of the IMF-World Bank’s “deadly economic medicine”, SAPRIN’s core organization sought to establish a participatory role for the NGOs, working hand in glove with USAID and the World Bank. The objective was to give a “human face” to the neoliberal policy agenda, rather than reject the IMF-World Bank policy framework outright:
“SAPRIN is the global civil-society network that took its name from the Structural Adjustment Participatory Review Initiative (SAPRI), which it launched with the World Bank and its president, Jim Wolfensohn, in 1997.
SAPRI is designed as a tripartite exercise to bring together organizations of civil society, their governments and the World Bank in a joint review of structural adjustment programs (SAPs) and an exploration of new policy options. It is legitimizing an active role for civil society in economic decision-making, as it is designed to indicate areas in which changes in economic policies and in the economic-policymaking process are required. ( http://www.saprin.org/overview.htm SAPRIN website, emphasis added)
Similarly, The Trade Observatory (formerly WTO Watch), operating out of Geneva, is a project of the Minneapolis based Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP), which is generously funded by Ford, Rockefeller, Charles Stewart Mott among others. (see Table 1 below).
The Trade Observatory has a mandate to monitor the World Trade Organization (WTO), the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA and the proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). (IATP, About Trade Observatory, accessed September 2010).
The Trade Observatory is also to develop data and information as well as foster “governance” and “accountability”. Accountability to the victims of WTO policies or accountability to the protagonists of neoliberal reforms?
The Trade Observatory watchdog functions does not in any way threaten the WTO. Quite the opposite: the legitimacy of the trade organizations and agreements are never questioned.
Table 1 Minneapolis Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) largest donors ?(for complete list click here)
Ford Foundation $2,612,500.00 1994 – 2006
Rockefeller Brothers Fund $2,320,000.00 1995 – 2005
Charles Stewart Mott Foundation $1,391,000.00 1994 – 2005
McKnight Foundation $1,056,600.00 1995 – 2005
Joyce Foundation $748,000.00 1996 – 2004
Bush Foundation $610,000.00 2001 – 2006
Bauman Family Foundation $600,000.00 1994 – 2006
Great Lakes Protection Fund $580,000.00 1995 – 2000
John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation $554,100.00 1991 – 2003
John Merck Fund $490,000.00 1992 – 2003
Harold K. Hochschild Foundation $486,600.00 1997 – 2005
Foundation for Deep Ecology $417,500.00 1991 – 2001
Jennifer Altman Foundation $366,500.00 1992 – 2001
Rockefeller Foundation $344,134.00 2000 – 2004
Soruce: http://activistcash.com/organization_financials.cfm/o/16-institute-for-agriculture-and-trade-policy
The World Economic Forum. “All Roads Lead to Davos”
The people’s movement has been hijacked. Selected intellectuals, trade union executives, and the leaders of civil society organizations (including Oxfam, Amnesty International, Greenpeace) are routinely invited to the Davos World Economic Forum, where they mingle with the World’s most powerful economic and political actors. This mingling of the World’s corporate elites with hand-picked “progressives” is part of the ritual underlying the process of “manufacturing dissent”.
The ploy is to selectively handpick civil society leaders “whom we can trust” and integrate them into a “dialogue”, cut them off from their rank and file, make them feel that they are “global citizens” acting on behalf of their fellow workers but make them act in a way which serves the interests of the corporate establishment:
“The participation of NGOs in the Annual Meeting in Davos is evidence of the fact that [we] purposely seek to integrate a broad spectrum of the major stakeholders in society in … defining and advancing the global agenda … We believe the [Davos] World Economic Forum provides the business community with the ideal framework for engaging in collaborative efforts with the other principal stakeholders [NGOs] of the global economy to “improve the state of the world,” which is the Forum’s mission. (World Economic Forum, Press Release 5 January 2001)
The WEF does not represent the broader business community. It is an elitist gathering: Its members are giant global corporations (with a minimum $5 billion annual turnover). The selected non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are viewed as partner “stakeholders” as well as a convenient “mouthpiece for the voiceless who are often left out of decision-making processes.” (World Economic Forum – Non-Governmental Organizations, 2010)
“They [the NGOs] play a variety of roles in partnering with the Forum to improve the state of the world, including serving as a bridge between business, government and civil society, connecting the policy makers to the grassroots, bringing practical solutions to the table…” (Ibid)
Civil society “partnering” with global corporations on behalf of “the voiceless”, who are “left out”?
Trade union executives are also co-opted to the detriment of workers’ rights. The leaders of the International Federation of Trade Unions (IFTU), the AFL-CIO, the European Trade Union Confederation, the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), among others, are routinely invited to attend both the annual WEF meetings in Davos, Switzerland as well as to the regional summits. They also participate in the WEF’s Labour Leaders Community which focuses on mutually acceptable patterns of behavior for the labor movement. The WEF “believes that the voice of Labour is important to dynamic dialogue on issues of globalisation, economic justice, transparency and accountability, and ensuring a healthy global financial system.”
“Ensuring a healthy global financial system” wrought by fraud and corruption? The issue of workers’ rights is not mentioned. (World Economic Forum – Labour Leaders, 2010).
The World Social Forum: “Another World Is Possible”
The 1999 Seattle counter-summit in many regards laid the foundations for the development of the World Social Forum.
The first gathering of the World Social Forum took place in January 2001, in Porto Alegre, Brazil. This international gathering involved the participation of tens of thousands of activists from grass-roots organizations and NGOs.
The WSF gathering of NGOs and progressive organizations has been held simultaneously with the Davos World Economic Forum (WEF). It was intended to voice opposition and dissent to the World Economic Forum of corporate leaders and finance ministers.
The WSF at the outset was an initiative of France’s ATTAC and several Brazilian NGOs’:
“… In February 2000, Bernard Cassen, the head of a French NGO platform ATTAC, Oded Grajew, head of a Brazilian employers’ organisation, and Francisco Whitaker, head of an association of Brazilian NGOs, met to discuss a proposal for a “world civil society event”; by March 2000, they formally secured the support of the municipal government of Porto Alegre and the state government of Rio Grande do Sul, both controlled at the time by the Brazilian Workers’ Party (PT)…. A group of French NGOs, including ATTAC, Friends of L’Humanité, and Friends of Le Monde Diplomatique, sponsored an Alternative Social Forum in Paris titled “One Year after Seattle”, in order to prepare an agenda for the protests to be staged at the upcoming European Union summit at Nice. The speakers called for “reorienting certain international institutions such as the IMF, World Bank, WTO… so as to create a globalization from below” and “building an international citizens’ movement, not to destroy the IMF but to reorient its missions.” (Research Unit For Political Economy, The Economics and Politics of the World Social Forum, Global Research, January 20, 2004)
From the outset in 2001, the WSF was supported by core funding from the Ford Foundation, which is known to have ties to the CIA going back to the 1950s: “The CIA uses philanthropic foundations as the most effective conduit to channel large sums of money to Agency projects without alerting the recipients to their source.” (James Petras, The Ford Foundation and the CIA, Global Research, September 18, 2002)
The same procedure of donor funded counter-summits or people’s summits which characterized the 1990s People’s Summits was embodied in the World Social Forum (WSF):
“… other WSF funders (or `partners’, as they are referred to in WSF terminology) included the Ford Foundation, — suffice it to say here that it has always operated in the closest collaboration with the US Central Intelligence Agency and US overall strategic interests; the Heinrich Boll Foundation, which is controlled by the German Greens party, a partner in the present [2003] German government and a supporter of the wars on Yugoslavia and Afghanistan (its leader Joschka Fischer is the [former] German foreign minister); and major funding agencies such as Oxfam (UK), Novib (Netherlands), ActionAid (UK), and so on.
Remarkably, an International Council member of the WSF reports that the “considerable funds” received from these agencies have “not hitherto awakened any significant debates [in the WSF bodies] on the possible relations of dependence it could generate.” Yet he admits that “in order to get funding from the Ford Foundation, the organisers had to convince the foundation that the Workers Party was not involved in the process.” Two points are worth noting here. First, this establishes that the funders were able to twist arms and determine the role of different forces in the WSF — they needed to be `convinced’ of the credentials of those who would be involved. Secondly, if the funders objected to the participation of the thoroughly domesticated Workers Party, they would all the more strenuously object to prominence being given to genuinely anti-imperialist forces. That they did so object will be become clear as we describe who was included and who excluded from the second and third meets of the WSF….
… The question of funding [of the WSF] does not even figure in the charter of principles of the WSF, adopted in June 2001. Marxists, being materialists, would point out that one should look at the material base of the forum to grasp its nature. (One indeed does not have to be a Marxist to understand that “he who pays the piper calls the tune”.) But the WSF does not agree. It can draw funds from imperialist institutions like Ford Foundation while fighting “domination of the world by capital and any form of imperialism” (Research Unit For Political Economy, The Economics and Politics of the World Social Forum, Global Research, January 20, 2004)
The Ford Foundation provided core support to the WSF, with indirect contributions to participating “partner organizations” from the McArthur Foundation, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, The Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, the W. Alton Jones Foundation, the European Commission, several European governments (including the Labour government of Tony Blair), the Canadian government, as well as a number of UN bodies (including UNESCO, UNICEF, UNDP, ILO and the FAO) .(Ibid).
In addition to initial core support from the Ford Foundation, many of the participating civil society organizations receive funding from major foundations and charities. In turn, the US and European based NGOs often operate as secondary funding agencies channelling Ford and Rockefeller money towards partner organizations in developing countries, including grassroots peasant and human rights movements.
The International Council (IC) of the WSF is made up of representatives from NGOs, trade unions, alternative media organizations, research institutes, many of which are heavily funded by foundations as well as governments. (See Fórum Social Mundial). The same trade unions, which are routinely invited to mingle with Wall Street CEOs at the Davos World Economic Forum (WSF) including the AFL-CIO, the European Trade Union Confederation and the Canadian Labor Congress (CLC) also sit on the WSF’s International Council (IC). Among NGOs funded by major foundations sitting on the WSF’s IC is the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) (see our analysis above) which oversees the Geneva based Trade Observatory.
The Funders Network on Trade and Globalization (FTNG), which has observer status on the WSF International Council plays a key role. While channelling financial support to the WSF, it acts as a clearing house for major foundations. The FTNG describes itself as “an alliance of grant makers committed to building just and sustainable communities around the world”. Members of this alliance are Ford Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers, Heinrich Boell, C. S. Mott, Merck Family Foundation, Open Society Institute, Tides, among others. (For a complete list of FTNG funding agencies see FNTG: Funders). FTNG acts as a fund raising entity on behalf of the WSF.
Western Governments Fund the Counter-Summits and Repress the Protest Movement
In a bitter irony, governments including the European Union grant money to fund progressive groups (including the WSF) involved in organizing protests against the very same governments which finance their activities.
“Governments, too, have been significant financiers of protest groups. The European Commission, for example, funded two groups who mobilised large numbers of people to protest at EU summits at Gothenburg and Nice. Britain’s national lottery, which is overseen by the government, helped fund a group at the heart of the British contingent at both protests.” (James Harding, Counter-capitalism, FT.com, October 15 2001)
We are dealing with a diabolical process: The host government finances the official summit as well as the NGOs actively involved in the Counter-Summit. It also funds the anti-riot police operation which has a mandate to repress the grassroots participants of the Counter-Summit.
The purpose of these combined operations, including violent actions committed by anti-riot police forces (including larcen and vandalism), is to discredit the protest movement and intimidate its participants. The broader objective is to transform the counter-summit into a ritual of dissent, which serves to uphold the interests of the official summit and the host government. This logic has prevailed in numerous counter summits since the 1990s.
At the 2001 Summit of the America in Quebec City, funding from the Canadian federal government to mainstream NGOs and trade unions was granted under certain conditions. A large segment of the protest movement was de facto excluded from the People’s Summit. This in itself led a second parallel venue, which some observers described as a “a counter-People’s Summit. In turn, organizers agreed with both the provincial and federal authorities that the protest march would be move towards a remote location some 10 km out of town, rather than towards the historical downtown area were the official FTAA summit was being held behind a heavily guarded “security perimeter”.
“Rather than marching toward the perimeter fence and the Summit of the Americas meetings, march organizers chose a route that marched from the People’s Summit away from the fence, through largely empty residential areas to the parking lot of a stadium in a vacant area several miles away. Henri Masse, the president of the Federation des travailleurs et travailleuses du Quebec (FTQ), explained, “I deplore that we are so far from the center-city…. But it was a question of security.” One thousand marshals from the FTQ kept very tight control over the march. When the march came to the point where some activists planned to split off and go up the hill to the fence, FTQ marshals signalled the Canadian Auto Workers (CAW) contingent walking behind CUPE to sit down and stop the march so that FTQ marshals could lock arms and prevent others from leaving the official march route.” (Katherine Dwyer, Lessons of Quebec City, International Socialist Review, June/July 2001)

Security Perimeter, Quebec City 2001??The Summit of the Americas was held inside a four kilometer ?”bunker” made of concrete and galvanized steel fencing. The ?10 feet high “Quebec Wall” encircled part of the historic city ?center including the parliamentary compound of the National ?Assembly, hotels and shopping areas.

Quebec City, April 2001

Quebec City 2001, Building the Security fence

Quebec City April 2001

Toronto G20 Security Fence $5.5 million, June 2010
NGO Leaders versus their Grassroots
The establishment of the World Social Forum (WSF) in 2001 was unquestionably a historical landmark, bringing together tens of thousands of committed activists. It was an important venue which allowed for the exchange of ideas and the establishment of ties of solidarity.
What is at stake is the ambivalent role of the leaders of progressive organizations. Their cozy and polite relationship to the inner circles of power, to corporate and government funding, aid agencies, the World Bank, etc, undermines their relationship and responsibilities to their rank and file. The objective of manufactured dissent is precisely that: to distance the leaders from their rank and file as a means to effectively silencing and weakening grassroots actions.
Most of the grassroots participating organizations in the World Social Forum including peasant, workers’ and student organizations, firmly committed to combating neoliberalism were unaware of the WSF International Council’s relationship to corporate funding, negotiated behind their backs by a handful of NGO leaders with ties to both official and private funding agencies.
Funding to progressive organizations is not unconditional. Its purpose is to “pacify” and manipulate the protest movement. Precise conditionalities are set by the funding agencies. If they are not met, the disbursements are discontinued and the recipient NGO is driven into de facto bankruptcy due to lack of funds.
The WSF defines itself as “an open meeting place for reflective thinking, democratic debate of ideas, formulation of proposals, free exchange of experiences and inter-linking for effective action, by groups and movements of civil society that are opposed to neo-liberalism and to domination of the world by capital and any form of imperialism, and are committed to building a society centred on the human person”. (See Fórum Social Mundial, accessed 2010).
The WSF is a mosaic of individual initiatives which does not directly threaten or challenge the legitimacy of global capitalism and its institutions. It meets annually. It is characterised by a multitude of sessions and workshops. In this regard, one of the features of the WSF was to retain the “do-it-yourself” framework, characteristic of the donor funded counter G7 People’s Summits of the 1990s.
This apparent disorganized structure is deliberate. While favoring debate on a number of individual topics, the WSF framework is not conducive to the articulation of a cohesive common platform and plan of action directed global capitalism. Moreover, the US led war in the Middle East and Central Asia, which broke out a few months after the inaugural WSF venue in Porto Alegre in January 2001, has not been a central issue in forum discussions.
What prevails is a vast and intricate network of organizations. The recipient grassroots organizations in developing countries are invariably unaware that their partner NGOs in the United States or the European Union, which are providing them with financial support, are themselves funded by major foundations. The money trickles down, setting constraints on grassroots actions. Many of these NGO leaders are committed and well meaning individuals acting within a framework which sets the boundaries of dissent. The leaders of these movements are often co-opted, without even realizing that as a result of corporate funding their hands are tied.
Global capitalism finances anti-capitalism: an absurd and contradictory relationship.
“Another World is Possible”, but it cannot be meaningfully achieved under the present arrangement.
A shake-up of the World Social Forum, of its organizational structure, its funding arrangements and leadership is required.
There can be no meaningful mass movement when dissent is generously funded by those same corporate interests which are the target of the protest movement. In the words of McGeorge Bundy, president of the Ford Foundation (1966-1979),”Everything the [Ford] Foundation did could be regarded as ‘making the World safe for capitalism'”.

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