He sure does love to whip out that pepper spray. What a he-man!
Given the costs and risks one incurs from participating in protests like this — to say nothing of the widespread mockery one receives — it’s natural that most of the participants will be young and not yet desperate to cling to institutional stability. It’s also natural that this cohort won’t be well-versed (or even interested) in the high arts of media messaging and leadership structures. Democratic Party precinct captains, MBA students in management theory and corporate communications, and campaign media strategists aren’t the ones who will fuel protests like this; it takes a mindset of passionate dissent and a willingness to remove oneself from the safe confines of institutional respectability.
So, yes, the people willing to engage in protests like these at the start may lack (or reject the need for) media strategies, organizational hierarchies, and messaging theories. But they’re among the very few people trying to channel widespread anger into activism rather than resignation, and thus deserve support and encouragement — and help — from anyone claiming to be sympathetic to their underlying message. As Perrin put it:
This part of Michigan [where I live] was once militant. From organized labor to student agitation. Now there’s nothing. Shop after shop goes under. Strip malls abandoned. Legalized loan shark parlors spread. Dollar stores hang on. Parking lots riots of weeds. Roads in serious disrepair. Those with jobs feel lucky to be employed. Everyone else is on their own. A general resignation prevails. Life limps by.
Personally, I think there’s substantial value even in those protests that lack “exit goals” and “messaging strategies” and the rest of the platitudes from Power Point presentations by mid-level functionaries at corporate conferences. Some injustices simply need anger and dissent expressed for its own sake, to make clear that there are citizens who are aware of it and do not accept it.
When there’s so much asinine marketing going on all around them
You’ll notice they have no problem with candidates who get no-show jobs at law firms while they’re running, though.
Last night, the Senate confirmed six U.S. Attorneys, five of whom were the preference of Republicans. Traditionally, nominations for U.S.Attorneys are presented to the President by the senators of the district. If the district’s senators are not in the President’s party, representatives from the House who are in the same party are consulted.
I seem to have lost the knack of turning my brain off to sleep. In the past three days, I’ve gotten maybe 10 hours sleep, total. (One night, I didn’t sleep at all.) I’ve tried getting to bed earlier, warm milk, hot showers, no TV, etc. Oh, and meditation. I’ve tried listening to music to help me fall asleep, something that used to work like a charm: nada. It’s making me a little crazy, like a rat where somebody’s moved all the walls in the maze.
I did fall asleep long enough last night to have some weird dream about visiting a former friend’s Victorian house, which was filled with antiques and pets. I took a bath in an old-fashioned tub, fell asleep and woke up to running water overflowing all over the floor. I cleaned up the water and went next door to an outdoor party, where someone parked their car so it was sticking out on the street. A passing car hit it and knocked it into my car (my old Tercel, not the one I have now), which then slammed into several others. I was upset because everyone somehow thought it was my fault. Oh well!
Looks like unions have found the silver lining in the Citizens United ruling – namely, Super PACs and the ability to go after non-union voters:
But the ruling also changed the rules for unions, effectively ending a prohibition on outreach to nonunion households. Now, unions can use their formidable numbers to reach out to sympathetic nonunion voters by knocking on doors, calling them at home and trying to get them to polling places. They can also create their own Super PACs to underwrite bigger voter identification and get-out-the-vote operations than ever before.
As part of this overhaul, Richard L. Trumka, president of the A.F.L.-C.I.O., has said organized labor will be more independent of the Democratic Party, sitting out races where unions are disappointed with the Democratic candidate’s positions on issues important to them and occasionally financing primary challengers to Democratic incumbents.
The unions said they even intended to back a few Republicans they judge to have been generally supportive of their agenda, like Representative Steven C. LaTourette of Ohio.
Mr. Trumka said unions were tired of Democratic politicians taking them for granted after labor shoveled millions of dollars into Democratic campaigns. In distancing themselves, at least a bit, from the Democrats, unions are becoming part of a trend in which newly empowered outside groups build what are essentially party structures of their own — in this case, to somewhat offset the money flowing into conservative groups that are doing the same thing.
What do you think? Good idea or not?