Chris Hedges has argued for a long time that the only possibly effective recourse left to us is peaceful, civil disobedience and citizen demonstration.

He may be right.

Whether or not he’s right that this is the only remaining action we citizens have that has any hope of succeeding at wresting control of our country from the few ultra-wealthy plutarchs (like the Koch brothers) who have taken over, such action is nevertheless needed.

And now we have it. Thank you Occupy Wall Street.

The Best Among Us

by Chris Hedges

There are no excuses left. Either you join the revolt taking place on Wall Street and in the financial districts of other cities across the country or you stand on the wrong side of history. Either you obstruct, in the only form left to us, which is civil disobedience, the plundering by the criminal class on Wall Street and accelerated destruction of the ecosystem that sustains the human species, or become the passive enabler of a monstrous evil. Either you taste, feel and smell the intoxication of freedom and revolt or sink into the miasma of despair and apathy. Either you are a rebel or a slave.

To be declared innocent in a country where the rule of law means nothing, where we have undergone a corporate coup, where the poor and working men and women are reduced to joblessness and hunger, where war, financial speculation and internal surveillance are the only real business of the state, where even habeas corpus no longer exists, where you, as a citizen, are nothing more than a commodity to corporate systems of power, one to be used and discarded, is to be complicit in this radical evil. To stand on the sidelines and say “I am innocent” is to bear the mark of Cain; it is to do nothing to reach out and help the weak, the oppressed and the suffering, to save the planet. To be innocent in times like these is to be a criminal. Ask Tim DeChristopher.

Choose. But choose fast. The state and corporate forces are determined to crush this. They are not going to wait for you. They are terrified this will spread. They have their long phalanxes of police on motorcycles, their rows of white paddy wagons, their foot soldiers hunting for you on the streets with pepper spray and orange plastic nets. They have their metal barricades set up on every single street leading into the New York financial district, where the mandarins in Brooks Brothers suits use your money, money they stole from you, to gamble and speculate and gorge themselves while one in four children outside those barricades depend on food stamps to eat. Speculation in the 17th century was a crime. Speculators were hanged. Today they run the state and the financial markets. They disseminate the lies that pollute our airwaves. They know, even better than you, how pervasive the corruption and theft have become, how gamed the system is against you, how corporations have cemented into place a thin oligarchic class and an obsequious cadre of politicians, judges and journalists who live in their little gated Versailles while 6 million Americans are thrown out of their homes, a number soon to rise to 10 million, where a million people a year go bankrupt because they cannot pay their medical bills and 45,000 die from lack of proper care, where real joblessness is spiraling to over 20 percent, where the citizens, including students, spend lives toiling in debt peonage, working dead-end jobs, when they have jobs, a world devoid of hope, a world of masters and serfs.

The only word these corporations know is more. They are disemboweling every last social service program funded by the taxpayers, from education to Social Security, because they want that money themselves. Let the sick die. Let the poor go hungry. Let families be tossed in the street. Let the unemployed rot. Let children in the inner city or rural wastelands learn nothing and live in misery and fear. Let the students finish school with no jobs and no prospects of jobs. Let the prison system, the largest in the industrial world, expand to swallow up all potential dissenters. Let torture continue. Let teachers, police, firefighters, postal employees and social workers join the ranks of the unemployed. Let the roads, bridges, dams, levees, power grids, rail lines, subways, bus services, schools and libraries crumble or close. Let the rising temperatures of the planet, the freak weather patterns, the hurricanes, the droughts, the flooding, the tornadoes, the melting polar ice caps, the poisoned water systems, the polluted air increase until the species dies.

Who the hell cares? If the stocks of ExxonMobil or the coal industry or Goldman Sachs are high, life is good. Profit. Profit. Profit. That is what they chant behind those metal barricades. They have their fangs deep into your necks. If you do not shake them off very, very soon they will kill you. And they will kill the ecosystem, dooming your children and your children’s children. They are too stupid and too blind to see that they will perish with the rest of us. So either you rise up and supplant them, either you dismantle the corporate state, for a world of sanity, a world where we no longer kneel before the absurd idea that the demands of financial markets should govern human behavior, or we are frog-marched toward self-annihilation.

Those on the streets around Wall Street are the physical embodiment of hope. They know that hope has a cost, that it is not easy or comfortable, that it requires self-sacrifice and discomfort and finally faith. They sleep on concrete every night. Their clothes are soiled. They have eaten more bagels and peanut butter than they ever thought possible. They have tasted fear, been beaten, gone to jail, been blinded by pepper spray, cried, hugged each other, laughed, sung, talked too long in general assemblies, seen their chants drift upward to the office towers above them, wondered if it is worth it, if anyone cares, if they will win. But as long as they remain steadfast they point the way out of the corporate labyrinth. This is what it means to be alive. They are the best among us.

Click here to access OCCUPY TOGETHER, a hub for all of the events springing up across the country in solidarity with Occupy Wall St.

Original post on TruthDig

39 Responses to “Occupy Together: Why It Matters”

  1. one thing about this whole expiriment that irks me. In order to achieve the initial equality, it must be forced upon society. this strip the equality from the get go? If you say equality must be forced, then implying that equality can not be a naturally occuring thing, meaning that some people can not live with equality without supervision, destroying equality. Fill me in on your answer to this, I think there could be one, just not exactly sure what it is.]]>

  2. domesserno sales says:

    Don’t be so ignorant. That would be like me, a southerner, saying all you Yankees are stupid. Don’t be like like that. There is plenty of ignorance everywhere and we all need to work toward ending it.

  3. i have always believed there was more to 9/11 than met the eye but these videos just seal it for me x hard to believe almost but its clear to see this was not terrorists that done this !!

  4. Politico

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    Documents Reveal Reactions to Disputed ATF Investigations in ArizonaNew York Times
    Lanny Breuer: Should have learned from past ‘gun-walking’ failurePolitico
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  5. Occupy wall street has their numbers wrong. Its 10% blood suckers of the poor, 85% deaf dumb & blind, & the 5% the poor righteous teachers

  6. tofink ling says:

    The Ten Commandments indeed. The 1st 3-4 are about “be a loyal member of this club or else….” Then, 5th in order of Thou shalt not kill. Nothing about slavery and which were widespread. The rest are obvious to anyone who follows the golden rule, pronounced by Confucius 6 centuries before Jesus, also arrived at by the old Greek philosophers centuries before Jesus.

  7. Shut down wall street this friday by not buying anything. You can do it, my friends and family are doin it, I’m doin it, You can do it too.

  8. chuechlein knold says:

    This is one of those videos that would make the world a better place is everyone were to watch it (and take it in, obviously).

  9. soda brosalvadi says:

    AS I WAS SAYING, The one rep voting system would work by the rep voting for whoever the majority of the state voted for. I heard people are trampled to death and during near-death experiences on Black Friday, so I would eiher have it banned, or at least make it against the law to fight and kill, OR ditch dying, wounded or sick people. That would be a good government. PS, no draft unless we are on soldiers, or we are in dire need of soldiers.

  10. silvanchis osuka says:

    Obama Marks End of Iraq War (Wall Street Journal): Share With Friends: | | USA – Top Stories Stories, RSS Feed…

  11. biber dormanacef says:

    First, all of the banks were not in trouble. Second, those banks made bad business decisions, and should have failed. It would have opened up room in the market for new, better banks and businesses to take its place. Instead, thousands of mom&pop’s banks were bought up by the big banks, thus decreasing competition, which was the point the whole time.

  12. this song is what I think of when I recall those wonderfully happy, new, turbulent, world-changing days of the 60s (my teenage formative years)…I now look back from the perspective of a 60-ish “establishment” professional dude guy, and I miss those days so much…! Byrds and Dylan forever !!!!

  13. Lol TWO prosters interrupt Ron Paul in a crowd of hundreds..way to go! RP will end Corporatism & The Federal

  14. olck pijmann says:

    How did you get access. i am planing to make a professional video edited with final cut pro and motion. do i need a special permit for that ?? gonna be there next month. please help me :). great video

  15. Women are not a minority, & we’re not an issue. We’re half of humanity. We are humans. Our issues are human issues, our rights human rights. –

  16. Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. ~ Michael Douglas, Wall Street. Get the best 100 movie quotes

  17. This does suggest that either Amelia or Negesti were targeted. Also, I saw the injured guy on crutches at Union later.

  18. sherlunda says:

    Watching repo games does nothing but drive me to be one of the 1% that occupy wall street rally against

  19. broch mussooks says:

    Wall Street Journal takes a good look at both sides of the “should I buy now?” question being asked by many…

  20. Like Hussein Ibish, Eric Alterman could also have a great career as a professional white moderate during the civil rights movement.

  21. mukayal says:

    that’s what cctv is for silly. Just pretend she’s Muslim. Pretty sure in the US that means she hs no civil rights.

  22. Despite Occupy Wall Street, CEO Pay Rose In 2011: The Top 10 …: Executive compensation continued to rise last …

  23. shans son says:

    You can’t help but feel Mock The Week put women comedians on just to put forward an air of equality, when they are definitely not funny.

  24. ray longle says:

    The other night I had a dream that me and 4 civil rights activist from the 60’s went to a bar and beat up some white boys

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    Left, Right & Center – KCRW / JP Morgan’s 7-Billion-Dollar Surprise: Claw-Back to the Future? – Left, Right & Center on KCRW –

  26. felt kaseley says:

    there is a need for equal right in Saudi Arabia irrespective of sects! We all worship Allah! The Qur’an preaches equality

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    What makes the private sector, especially the workplace, such an attractive instrument of repression is precisely that it can administer punishments without being subject to the constraints of the Bill of Rights. It is an archipelago of private governments, in which employers are free to do precisely what the state is forbidden to do: punish… –

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    posted by: merriemarie remarks: “Fear the Boom and Bust”: Hayek vs. Keynes Rap Video By David Theroux Tuesday January 26, 2010 at 1:21:04 PM PST Here is a splendid and insightful, new rap video pitting the ideas of Nobel Laureate, Austrian School economist Friedrich A. Hayek against those of Lord John Maynard Keynes. As Hayek has shown, economic crises of boom and bust are created by governments that expand credit through central banks, creating unsustainable bubbles that ultimately crash. based on Keynes’s theories, governments have foolishly then intervened with bailouts and “stimulus” spending measures of pork and war that only prolong the recovery (e.g., Great Depression as well as the current economic malaise). Our Senior Fellow Higgs has shown the folly of Keynesian policies since 1930 in his acclaimed book, Depression, War, and Cold War. The choice is clear, Hayek’s free markets vs. Keynes’s corporatism.

  29. burn simorgilli says:

    To You All Out There On & Space on this Tuesday ~ End Slavery, Terrors, Wars & Advance for etc. Forward?

  30. “Birgitta Jonsdottir says the US of Justice also asked Twitter for all of her tweets since November 2009. She says she has 10 days to appeal against the subpoena. US officials have not commented on her claims, which have not been independently verified.”

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    Global solidarity a must in upcoming climate change talks, says UN rights UN News Centre
    Independent on human rights and international solidarity Virginia Dandan. UN Photo/Jean-Marc Ferré. Print. 23 November 2012 – Ahead of new climate change talks next week, an independent United Nations human rights today called on …

  33. sates purvatield says:

    A post about how Yogi Bear details the early years of the Animal Civil Rights Movement in the Polar Bear Cafe univer …

  34. vaster sut says:

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  37. DHS Amassing Arms to be Used Against American Citizens? | OCCUPY CORPORATISM IF U DISAGREE W/DHS YOU ARE THE TERRORIST

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  39. kusaganova says:

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