Tuesday, March 13, 2012

On the Olympics

You know, this thing with the Olympics and the government on steroids amping up authoritarian rule at the expense of the taxpayer is really bumming me out.  The press today about the security costs and security measures really filled me with rage.  People think that people with bipolar are outliers, but I ask those people what the hell makes them think their neuropsychotic programming is all copacetic if they are not filled with rage when they see this going on.  I mean, what the hell?  And people are speculating that protest is impossible.  People are reporting that protest will be impossible. 

But the people are of course more powerful than Visa or Coca Cola, or Barclays.  They are more powerful than those security firms and the thousand FBI agents.  The people have the power.  We have handed that power over to corporations and to our government, we have handed it over because we have been too busy participating in the economic system to pay attention as they took it.  They just took it away from us when we weren't looking.  And now we really don't have a lot of the rights we used to have, rights like habeus corpus, or effective assistance of counsel, we just don't have those rights.  This previous erosion, coupled with the new authoritarian normalcy they have planned, these actions are attacks on the people.  I consider the authoritarian measures and security budget to be - an attack on the people. 

But people are reporting that protest will be impossible. 

I don't believe that for a minute.  I actually think this is where Occupy comes into its own, fulfills the destiny of its own title - it can occupy this new authoritarian normal as it appears in the Olympics, it can push back.  Everyone can be in the Occupation for this purpose, right?  Anyone concerned with civil liberties, with austerity measures, with the plight of the poor and the accountability of the rich - anyone could Occupy. 

My idea is that we adopt the Occupy London arrow logo as a small discrete temporary body tattoo, as a badge, a t-shirt, a hat, a carry-all -- something that everyone who attends the Olympics can wear or carry.  No violence, no marching, no tents, just a show of solidarity.

Starting with the ticket distribution and the requirement that you have an active Visa credit card in order to buy tickets, I have had a bad feeling about these Olympics.  It seems to be moving corporate reality much more squarely into focus at the sacrifice of other kinds of reality.  The Olympics is now the unimportant content between the bank advertisements and the car advertisements.  And the populace is something that is dictated to by corporations, under the auspices of the government. Anyone who went through the ticket lottery is welcome to comment, but I think you have to agree with me there.  It's all very creepy, you get dictated to.  It used to be that consumers had rights, but it doesn't appear that they have rights any longer.  That is something else we let slip away.

I just finished watching the incredible HBO John Adams biopic which is the best thing I have ever seen on television, that's right, bitches, better than Hill Street Blues or Modern Family or even those early heady days of Ally McBeal.  It ends with this quote:

“Posterity! You will never know how much it cost the present Generation to preserve your Freedom! I hope you will make good use of it. If you do not, I shall repent in Heaven, that I ever took half the Pains to preserve it.”

I can't help but think John Adams is repenting in Heaven.  

3 comments:

  1. You won't be allowed to wear the Occupy logo: "New, punitive and potentially invasive laws such as the London Olympic Games Act 2006 are in force. These legitimise the use of force, potentially by private security companies, to proscribe Occupy-style protests. They also allow Olympic security personnel to deal forcibly with the display of any commercial material that is deemed to challenge the complete management of London as a "clean city" to be branded for the global TV audience wholly by prime corporate sponsors (including McDonald's, Visa and Dow Chemical).

    London is also being wired up with a new range of scanners, biometric ID cards, number-plate and facial-recognition CCTV systems, disease tracking systems, new police control centres and checkpoints. These will intensify the sense of lockdown in a city which is already a byword across the world for remarkably intensive surveillance." This a a quote from the Guardian article. The police even removed the "I love Occupy" badges from a person on the steps of St Paul's the other day.....

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  2. This is the point, and Rachel makes it well. It needs to be en masse. The phrase 'safety in numbers' has hung around so long for a reason. It is relatively easy to pick off a few hundred people, or even a thousand. But if we were talking Iraq 'Stop the War' style numbers, without permission marching down olympic roads?

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