Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Good article from The Nation, written today, on the London protests

Here. Excerpts:

"we waited under an eggshell sky for the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse: red against war, green against climate chaos, silver against financial crime and black (the website said) against borders and land enclosures, in memory of the Diggers.

War got there first, escorted by a small crowd offering the usual British cocktail of whimsy ("Queers against capitalism and other nasty things" "Eat the bankers") and testosterone ("We are fucking angry"). There were fists in the air, and singing, to the tune of "Clementine": "Build a bonfire, build a bonfire, Put the bankers on the top…" Small knots of anarchists in black drummed up a rapid rhythm; police in day-glo green formed equally rapid cordons; the last red double-deckers tried to nose through the crowd. Everyone was taking pictures, with cameras and mobile phones: if it isn't mediated, it isn't happening. "Jump! Jump!" people shouted up at the windowless bank, and "Where's our money?" and "Shame!"

The protest seemed a broad bricolage of causes: a young man waving a red flag allowed that we're not in a revolutionary situation yet, "but I think we might be soon"; three feet away, a woman holding one end of a banner ("Capitalism isn't working") said she was furious with Gordon Brown for saddling her children with debt and may well vote for the Tories in the next election. But Mary--retired, with a "Wage Slave" label on--rebuked my cynicism. "I refute the idea that we're all talking about different things," she said. "The kind of world we want to see is the same world---a world where money is used to help people. We're all just talking about different bits of it."

The whole article is really good.

About the broken windows: it's odd that the mainstream Progressive 'New Media', particularly RawStory, are still only focusing on broken windows, with links being posted during the day to the most over the top anti-protester coverage and now a big headline declaring "Multiple Videos: London banks attacked" No other stories about the protests are on Rawstory currently. What hypocrisy. Rawstory has been posting anti-bank and anti-AIG stories for months, railing against banks, bank bonuses, and bankers in general, publishing articles calling for the nationalization of banks. Now that some windows have been broken they're acting like the Wall Street Journal. Let me tell you: personally, I don't give a damn whether people break bank windows or if they don't, but you know you've got to dance with them that brung you, and Rawstory has been giving vent to pissed off sentiment about banks. I'm guessing that a number of people in the U.S. pissed off about and maybe personally hurt by banks and mortgages aren't shedding many tears that a few bank windows were broken in London, and more than a couple probably would like to do the same in the U.S. Yet, instead of understanding, suddenly Rawstory serves up moralizing.

How about that.

I could talk about the difference between pre-9/11 progressive media on the Internet and Bush era progressive internet media, but I'll save that for another day; I'll just say that it's interesting to examine them and see how deep their perspective on the world runs.

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