Well, any Occupy ‘prank’ not involving human waste is at least a step in the right direction.
Apparently epistemic closure is a problem for anarchists too. They just don’t seem to get that the Average Joe does not look too kindly on blatantly lawless behavior, even when they might otherwise be sympathetic to the cause. Free transportation? Well someone is paying for it, and you don’t have to be a conservative (or even out of grade school) to know that it’s just plain wrong to take for free what others are spending their hard-earned cash on. Whether it’s a ride on the subway, or squatting in a foreclosed house that never belonged to you.
I’m not sure why, but I was expecting the occupy movement to re-group over the winter and get a little smarter about the types of tactics they are using. At times throughout our history civil disobedience has been used to advance causes which most of us would probably agree were for the betterment of the nation. I’m glad Rosa Parks refused to sit in the back of the bus and it sickens me that she ever had to. But fighting to end racial discrimination and demanding free stuff from a government going deeper and deeper into debt are not exactly morally equivalent, to say the least. And this fact isn’t lost on most Americans, regardless of whether the media continues to gloss over the occupy movement’s most egregious behavior.
If the occupiers’ aim was to shine a spotlight on the fact that their movement is rooted in anarchism and socialism, I can think of no better way for them to accomplish this than to engage in stunts like this. What is somewhat surprising is that mainstream allies of the Democratic party apparently have no qualms about continuing to align themselves with the movement. They seem to be banking everything on the President’s class warfare campaign. But if the misbehavior from rank and file occupiers is only half as bad as it was last fall, I just don’t see how they can avoid this backfiring. Is rampant anti-Americanism and illegal behavior a recipe for electoral success? I don’t think so, but we’ll find out in November I guess.