As I approached the assembly point for the march of the former Occupiers of Philadelphia's Dilworth Plaza, I was concerned about the large police presence, but it turned out they were just there to escort our march from Rittenhouse Square to the Roundhouse where several dozen former Occupiers were jailed. Happy to report that the police were cooperative and polite throughout our march. This is in contrast, of course, to their behavior during the clearing of Dilworth Plaza.
Our trumpeter sounds the call for us to assemble. We met, as planned, at Rittenhouse Square.
As the Inky agrees, the nearly eight-week occupation was about "economic injustice, corporate greed, and other issues." The essential problem, as far as the city was concerned, was that there was no local issue that could be easily resolved or even negotiated that would have made the Occupiers abandon Dilworth on their own.
We carried a spirited discussion for about an hour before heading off. MP4 Video of discussion.
Is the Occupation movement a success as far as those national economic issues are concerned? Absolutely. The second iteration of the Cat Food Commission, that is, the Super Committee, died with a whimper and the Democrats on the Commission felt no need at all to make any frantic, last-minute concessions in order to "save face" or any other such nonsense.
Police on bicycles flanking/escorting us on the left as we march to the Roundhouse. Another video.
Democrats have been trying in vain to argue that Republicans shouldn't worry so much about their ultra-rich constituents "suffering" from the possibility of small tax increases and should instead pay attention to what regular people need. Until the Occupy movement, Republicans weren't listening. Now, they're at least pretending to be concerned. Is that small progress? Sure, but compare that with no progress at all beforehand!
The eternal question, of course, about the economic stewardship of the 1% and how they've so thoroughly messed up the economy for the rest of us, is "Are they evil or stupid?" Unfortunately, as far as the economic effects of their actions are concerned, it's six-of-one, half-dozen-of-the-other. And naturally, as far as members of the 1% are concerned, all the trouble in the country is President Obama's fault.
We remained silent while passing by the now-deserted Dilworth Plaza.
And yes, Elon James White and the African-Americans who agree with him are correct. The oppression of the Occupy movement is nothing new for non-white people in America. We're hardly the first group that had a serious beef with the government that the government has come down hard on. Heck, black people didn't even have a serious beef with the government for the government (With the enthusiastic support of many white) to come down hard on them to begin with.
We had an enthusiastic rally at the Roundhouse, raising our fists to various names and causes. Another video.
So, what's next for the Occupy movement? A set of small, local actions for the moment, followed by renewed national activities in the Spring. We aren't going anywhere!