The Occupiers are coming. The anarchists. The communists. The hipsters. That boiling pot of pot smokers and malcontents and anti-establishment types have taken their Wall Street show on the road and are planning to pitch their North Face tents in Grand Circus Park on Friday.
I assume of course that they are pacifists and will bring no guns. And so I will also assume it will be left to the Detroit cops – the fascist lapdogs of the corporate master – to protect them.
Because Detroit is a rough and impoverished joint. Even Rosa Parks, the civil rights icon, was beaten and robbed in her own home. And when a man is hungry, he has little time for proletarian polemics and lectures about international finance. So a piece of advice, leave the iPhone at home – street value: $10 and some snack cakes.
Let it Rip: The 'Occupy' Movement
According to their press release (Yes! A press release! They also have a non-profit 501(c)(3) status with the Internal Revenue Service), the Occupiers have chosen to occupy Grand Circus Park because of its “public transit, accessible parking, bathroom access and prime location.”
Lord hopes if they are going to burn fossil fuel, it will be in an American-made car because union bosses can be an unreasonable lot. As for public transit, I don’t know if anyone’s told them the buses run three hours behind schedule. As for the toilets, most of the commodes in that area are owned by Mike Ilitch the Pizza Baron. (Just five bucks a pie!).
But these are mere details.
What the Occupier movement wants exactly is an amorphous and slippery thing. According to a posting on Occupy Wall Street’s website, the movement demands universal health care, a guaranteed living wage regardless of employment, free college education, one trillion dollars in infrastructure improvement, the elimination of the fossil-fuel economy, the abolition of all credit-reporting agencies and immediate across-the-board debt forgiveness.
These of course are not official demands, since there is nothing official about the movement and no one is entitled to the title of Supreme Leader. But since we’re reaching for the stars here, may I suggest a reconstitution of the Apollo space program to the moon to bring back enough cheese to feed the world’s hungry.
The Occupiers remind me of another overnight sensation: The Tea Party. A grassroots movement, lead by no figurehead, grousing about the same things. Banks, corporate takeover, a bloated, corrupt and unresponsive government. Same principles, polar opposites.
Boiled down it sets up like this: Spend vs. Don’t Spend.
Of course the Tea Partiers have been caricatured as bible-thumping, gun-toting, trailer-dwelling racists. That’s not true. Just as the Occupiers are not all empty-headed sweater wearers.
Bonus Content: Watch my trip to a Tea Party tax revolt picnic with the Michigan Militia from 2009.
I’ll say something in defense of the Tea Partiers and the Occupiers. At least they have guiding principles. They have set not only the conversation but the national political agenda. That’s a whole lot better than the contemptible middle who do nothing but flip through the cable channels and complain.
So, in the spirit of human respect, I will see you all Friday, my fellow citizens, 4pm sharp at Grand Circus Park. And Viva La Revolucion! (That means Long Live the Revolution in Spanish – the mother tongue of the conquistadors and colonizers.)