Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Occupy Oakland

The aimless temper tantrum that is the “Occupy” activism is now hoping to generate a mass strike in Oakland, California, today.

The complete absence of seriousness among the brewers of this brouhaha continues to stem from their preference for anarchistic scapegoating over reformist (or dare the Recovering Bureaucrat say it—“revolutionary”) demands.  How far serious leftist revolution has devolved from the muscularity of The Communist Manifesto to the wimpy self-esteem feel-good vacuity of the Occupiers!

So let’s say that they succeed in shutting down the entire city and realize Marx’s dream of making “the ruling classes tremble at the communist revolution.” 

Then what?

The sound of the wind whistling through the tools-downed Port of Oakland will be your answer.

We can only hope that this is the last gasp of the degeneracy of the Left implicit in its political aims and methods ever since the New Left took over the Democratic Party in the 1972 McGovern candidacy.

At least the trade union-based Old Left took capitalism, the economy, and wealth creation seriously; the New Left with its vicious postmodern rejection of Reason has no choice but to adopt the therapeutic approach to politics based on feelings and grievances.

Since you can’t think, you can only feel; and the only feeling worth pursuing is the one that generates pleasure and represses pain.

The Occupiers--so far--are just the latest political version of the Utopian infantilism of our common humanity.  Of course we all want peace, equanimity, and ease in our daily lives.  But what creates these?  Are we willing to start with M. Scott Peck’s laconic observation that opens The Road Less Traveled: “Life is difficult”?

Peace, equanimity, and ease begin to come only when we are willing to face our own humanity, which emphatically includes the unwillingness to face it.  We have to be mature adults to take this on within ourselves. 

Change, reform, and societal improvement are also difficult, and similarly, only adults need apply.

Perhaps compassion for the Occupiers is in order.  After all, not only are things changing rapidly, but as Ray Kurzweil has demonstrated, the rate of change is increasing exponentially.  Our individual and collective senses of angst are logical reactions to the pervasive impression that the institutions that we have been able to rely on for security and order are dissolving under our very noses and against our desires.

The difference is this: adults accept the challenge with courage and determination.  Everyone else flees into unreason, victimhood, and paralysis.

These will all be on full display today in Oakland, whoever joins the mass strike.  There will not be a single constructive demand for reform or improvement.  There will be nothing solid upon which a truly progressive political movement can stand.

And, as always, the adults will be the ones to pick up the pieces and soldier on into the uncertain future, bringing the children along with us as best we can.

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