Thursday, December 22, 2011

Occupy Occupy?

I don't understand why I haven't seen this suggested as a political movement yet:  why don't the people who dislike Occupy D.C. simply occupy the “occupation”?  That is, just go down to the protest, and occupy tents while their owners are out.  When they come back and demand their tent back, declare that property is theft! 

I'm not seriously advocating it, of course, I just think it'd be funny as something akin to performance art.  And I'm also genuinely curious about how the average Occupier would respond to their tent being infringed upon in this way.  Complain that you've illegally infringed upon their rights to private possession of property?  Notify the police that you're sleeping where you're not supposed to?  I can only imagine that the police would enjoy the irony of someone trying to evict a trespasser from their illegal encampment.

Then again, this is only funny if you expect the Occupiers to be consistent in any shape or form.  While I appreciate the economic grievances that the Occupiers are venting, one thing I've learned from walking past (or through) McPherson Square every weekday for the last few months, it's that there are a lot of views being represented there, many of which seem wildly inconsistent with one another.  For example, here's the anarchist flag they have flying over the camp:


And here's the sign proclaiming that “Islam is the Way” sign that was, for a long time, the only sign visible from the western edge of the encampment:


If you don't get why that's funny, there's an old Islamic proverb, “Better sixty years of tyranny than a single night of anarchy.”   So maybe intellectual consistency isn't the strong-suit of the Occupiers.

8 comments:

  1. Property rights when they're convenient!

    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Kkg_UP3N6ms/TpgvkVC5TJI/AAAAAAAABQE/dHVwUiANDLw/s1600/wall_street_protest_2.JPG

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  2. How about going through those camps, and handing out copies of the Ferengi Rules of Acquisition:

    http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Rules_of_Acquisition

    All of the "occupy" gripes would be solved if they just followed that path!

    Also, the ending of this clip is the solution to our current financial woes:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hG0ipvIoFZs

    :-P

    Now on a more serious note: I'm of the opinion that all of those occupy rabble should apply for jobs.

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  3. I love that Muslim proverb at the end. That helps explain so much of the mentality in the Middle East that has consistently baffled my Western thinking.

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  4. Robert,

    That picture is priceless.

    Rob,

    I feel like the concentration of people who would get your "Ferengi Rules of Acquisition" joke would be disproportionately high in McPherson Square.

    Rev. Hans,

    It's very true. We descend from a Lockean tradition that places an enormous value of the freedom of the individual (to the extent that a number of atheistic arguments I've read recently boil down to, "I didn't consent to this social contract called life. Why do I have obligations to obey?"). In stark contrast, I've read a number of Muslims arguing that some form of sharia is required in Islam: the emphasis is much more on a well-ordered society, rather than maximizing individual liberty (or more accurately, individual license).

    Obviously, from a Christian perspective, we'd say that taking either of those concepts in isolation and running with them is very troubling.

    I.X.,

    Joe

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  5. I'm experiencing the same problem in Harrisburg, PA. I work as a maintenance tech (property management), and some occupiers have camped out on the sidewalk adjacent to one of our buildings. I'm definitely going to share this post with my boss, who will find it amusing as well.

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  6. For a minute when you were describing the multitude of divergent views within the Occupy movement, I thought you were going to draw a comparison with Protestantism. (grin)

    Dan Soares

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  7. So, question of the day: if you were an Iowan, who'd you caucus for tomorrow?

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  8. Joe I deeply apologize for this slightly "off topic" comment...but was not sure how to contact you otherwise. I used to have a blog "RichardRevsRavings" and you gave me some very positive feedback there. However I did not keep up with it and had maybe 6 followers. I now have a blog "Catholicboyrichard" through Wordpress, and would love it if you could check it out sometime. I come from a same-sex attraction background but my blog is much broader than that topic, and your input there would be more than welcome. I looked for your contact link but it seems disabled, so I picked the "Occupy" post to connnect with you since it seemed appropriate somehow hehe. In any case the link is http://catholicboyrichard.wordpress.com and you are definitely and cordially invited to link there or just share the occasional comment. You encouraged me much in the past and I did not intentionally lose contact with you. God bless!

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