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[The following is the text of a flier handed out at an Occupy Boston meeting on the Boston Common in December, 2011 the day after the police forcibly removed Occupiers from Dewey Square, Boston.--ed]
"We are the 99% ... and most likely you are too!
Our goal: 'A society that prioritizes the needs of all before the profits of a few.'
From the 'Declaration of Occupation',
passed by consensus, at General Assemply, Dewey Square, Nov. 29, 2011
Let's ask a scandalous question:
Who needs a 1% in the first place? Why should we allow the super-rich, and institutions controlled by the super-rich, to run our lives?
Why can't the 99% run this world ourselves? Why can't we share the wealth and run our economy along lines of mass participatory democracy? Why can't we remake this society's political and economic systems, along egalitarian and socially just prindiples?
Why should we accept a world where billions go hungry while billionaires bathe in ill-made money they literally can't find anything productive to do with? (They hoard it, and pour it into reckless speculation, into usurious loans, as well as into obscene material consumption ... not to mention the bribing of politicians, and on and on...
Why should we accept an economic system where those who don't have money have no rights to have their basic human needs met? Where people must go into debt and into wage-slavery to obtain housing or education? A system where homeless people huddle in the shadow of empty bank-owned foreclosed homes that cry out for new occupants? A system where food rots and people starve until speculators say the price is right?
Why should we accept a system that poisons the planet and destroys the very environment upon which the life of our species (among others) depends? A system that sees the wages and benefits paid to workers as a 'cost' of production that is to be minimized and squeezed whenever possible so that profit can be increased? A system that year after year spends trillions on war and military occupations, while cutting back on social programs and benefits that poor and working people depend on? A system that spends money on opening up new prisons as it shutters factories and schools? Accept this?
Why should we, the 99% settle for a reformed version of this system, of better 'populist' rhetoric from politicians who have been bred to serve the 1% Why on earth whould we respect or fall into line for politicians who represent this system? Why settle for kindlier, gentler tyrants? For a slightly less predatory and toxic capitalism?
Why not instead, go...
For the whole thing?
Of course if and when we do, they will tell us we are being 'crazy'. That we 'are not being realistic.' That things are 'under control.' That things will be O.K.. Above all, the cynicism: that 'this is just the way it is' Our goals are 'impossible' or 'unrealistic'. They call us 'utopian.'
But who is really being realistic and who utopian here?
Isn't it the case that if the 99% doesn't go for the whole thing, that if we leave a 1% in control of the collective wealth of this society when this movement is done, then whatever reforms or concessions a mass movement manages to win from this elite will eventually be evaded, eroded, and undermined by the army of lawyers, lobbyists, and campaign finance-pimps? Moreover, how can we even have a meaningful, informed mass dialogue in this country when the1%owns, controls, and manage the media ... making the very discourse in our faces, in our eyes, and in our mouths a toxic, deluded manipulated thing? The list goes on and on...I for one am sick of making these lists. Let's get to the root instead: capitalism, a system designed for the endless accumulation of profit, a system that renders all other
human and planetary needs external to that singular, predatory, virus-drive. It's a sick system and the 99% can be the cure.
We need to do better than just reforming this toxic mess of a 1% profit-driven system. We can and must not just speak truth to power, but build genuine people's power, with the goal of overthgrowing and overthrowing the rule of the 1% across all aspects of our lives. Let us reject and repulse -- TOGETHER -- the tyrant's grasp of capitalist elites over our economic, political, and social lives.
'Together we're unstoppable ... Another World is Possible!'
a slogan from Dewey Square
'99 to 1. Those are Great odds!'
This text is written by Jay Jubilee, just one member of the Socialist Caucus @Occupy Boston
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