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Springtime for Occupy! Piven & Lerner's Six Risky, Strategic Steps Forward for the Evicted Movement


It's Springtime for Occupy!  That means the brilliant cast of characters that brought you the noxious, multimillion dollar expense to the taxpayer are back for a second round.  Two of The Blaze's favorite leaders of civic unrest, arch-liberal sociologist Frances Fox Piven and SEIU labor organizer Stephen Lerner discussed  how Occupy Wall Street will pivot to a far more local, intimate occupation this spring after being evicted from their public squatting grounds with rubber bullets and crews in post apocalyptic hazmat suits.  In an in-depth interview with Democracynow.org, Piven and Learner lay out five integral steps that Occupy will be taking this spring to keep a pulse going.



The six next strategic steps for The Occupy Movement are as follows according to Learner and Piven:

1. LOCALIZE: Move Protest into neighborhoods and schools.

“What people have been figuring out how to do is to move the protest into the neighborhoods, into the workplaces, into the schools.” ~Piven

2. OCCUPY FORECLOSED HOMES AND FACTORIES: Broaden agenda to those most affected by the economic collapse.

"I think, in the end, it may turn out that evicting the occupations was the precipitant of expanding the movement, because the movement’s agenda has broadened, and they’re now experimenting with reoccupying foreclosed homes, for example, with ways of rallying to the defense of workers who are locked out or on strike."~Piven

3. RECRUIT YOUTH: Use the Universities and Professors as spearheads of Recruitment to broaden movement.

"And with the spring, I think there’s going to be a lot of protest in the universities and the colleges.

Young people are very responsive to the appeals of Occupy, to their cultural style."~Piven

4. ORGANIZE WITH LABOR: Further integration between Occupy and the traditional Unions, teamsters and community organizing, leftist organizations.

"And I think it’s part of how we think about combining the horizontal energy and vision and passion of Occupy with the more vertical traditional community- and labor-based groups. And when the two of them meet, we’ll get the combustion of saying Wall Street is drowning the country, and they’re doing it in neighborhoods and communities all over."~Lerner

5. OCCUPY DEMOCRATS: Specifically target the DNC convention, being held at Bank Of America Arena, to make a point that this is not a partisan movement.  In spite of the fact that scores of Democrats have praised the Occupy movement, including President Obama.

"And occupiers and community groups and environmentalists and people from all over the country are going to be coming to Charlotte.  And in a way, I think we can think about it as the first convention."~Lerner


6. BUY STOCK: An example is given by Learner of "a lot of people" buying shares of Bank Of America and taking their shares to the  annual shareholders meetings in San Francisco to vote on new polices for the company.  This is named The Confront Corporate Power Movement.

"Bank of America shares were recently down to $5, so a lot of people have bought stock and are planning to go to that meeting and try to be citizen shareholder—taxpayer shareholders, and have a say."~Lerner

Beyond this blueprint for spring anarchy, other bright ideas were flowing in the interview.  Mr. Learner has seemingly solved the crippling sub-prime housing crisis by offering a utopian solution: banks pay for everyone’s mortgages.  “So in the case of Bank of America and Wells Fargo, there’s millions of people who are underwater, 11 million, in their homes, meaning that their homes are worth less now when they bought them, and they’re drowning in the debt. So there’s a campaign to say, let’s force the banks to write down the principal on those mortgages by $300 billion so that folks can stay in their homes. And that would create a million jobs. It would save people $5,000 on average a year in mortgage payments” Lerner predicted.  Piven offered an equally non-traditional solution to the housing crisis when she called for the occupation of foreclosed homes. “…they’re now experimenting with reoccupying foreclosed homes, for example, with ways of rallying to the defense of workers who are locked out or on strike.’’

It remains to be seen how deep the occupy movement will root itself into our American society.  Piven fantasizes, "Protest movements have a long life—10, 15 years—and they are what we have to rely on to take our country back."  Learner's closing plea is unabashed in its socialist constructs, "Imagine building the kind of movement that can transform the country, that can really talk about redistributing wealth and power. And there’s never a better time to get involved." We will soon see if the tent-bound  progressive armies show up to answer the call.


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