Monday, March 26, 2012

Monday, March 26th, 2012.

Audio by AreaBridges

Today is Monday.  Wednesday, the people on the New Haven Green will be moving out.  One group is expected to leave and head out to a reservation in eastern Connecticut, to start something agricultural.  Another group sounded like they were headed for some kind of forested area, but the actual location wasn't disclosed.

I'm not really sure what's going to happen to the "Occupy New Haven" movement, but I feel as though it seems destined to be removed.  What's discouraging about the political discourse surrounding the "Occupy" movement, as we head into summer, is that it seems to have dissolved into an us-versus-them mentality.  One where cooperation between the occupation and City Hall was discouraged, by some, at one point.

Very few of the people in Occupy New Haven, and probably this is true of other camps around the country, will find their way back into the workforce, it seems.  Even the ones that are capable, competent and have some degree of training are not willing to become meaningless pieces in any sort of labor force that is not attentive to the social causes that many "Occupiers" have dedicated themselves to, often tying themselves to their tents with that intent.

While it's true that 1% of people have control over 99% of the "wealth" in the world, in financial terms, the people of Occupy don't truly represent 99% of civilization as a whole.  Probably most people with steady jobs who have not come down to support any kind of political movement against financial oppression aren't feeling the impact that the people that are actually living on the New Haven Green probably feel.  The people on the Green probably feel as though more people will be living in the same conditions that they face, without help, hope or a future to keep them a part of society.

What I noticed, though, is that the Occupation seems to resemble a farm, in many ways.  And that there are some people who work and live there that are interested in building their own communities from the ground up.  And that's why I'm saying that it's possible for us to bring people back into a workplace environment, if given a chance.

There is a plan to get people back into society again, by helping them develop their own society that will decrease the likelihood that future movements will be more hostile.  It looks as though there is a whole bunch of people, not just in New Haven, but a large demographic across the country that have become entirely disenfranchised by the American way, which is such that people like Mitt Romney can openly admit to not being taxed the same (while having much more cash available to him than most of us), and yet still run for President, and still be winning any kind of primary.

There are tons of examples of inequality in America, and that's just one of them.  It's the kind of thing that makes people want to protest.  And we can't just drop them from society, because they aren't going to disappear.  These people are going to end up costing society more, in economic terms, by letting them fall into the void.  Either by costing more in welcare, incarceration, or any of the other ways that we handle the disenfranchised members of our society who have lost their will to contribute.

I'm hoping that the City, together with the Office of Sustainability as well as the New Haven Land Trust, can put their heads together and come up with a plan that will boost Greater New Haven's agriculture by trying to get more of these people into jobs like that.  It's the only meaningful work that nearly anybody can contribute to, which will benefit all of our society.  It would prove to the rest of the country that New Haven stands for a more progressive approach; hopefully one that will yield greater benefits.

While I haven't totally agreed with the approach of the occupiers, where some have interfered with progress by not cooperating with any discussion about relocation and the establishment of their own neo-agricultural society, I do think that these people could probably need a hand, not a handout.  We are naive to think that these people created their own problems and they are requesting the rest of the world to solve theirs for them.  In some instances you're probably witnessing second or third generation poverty.

Most concerning on the National level were the provisions in the NDAA which seem directed at incarcerating American citizens suspected for terrorism.  Assuming that "Occupy" continues to be disruptive, it's possible that the Federal government could group the entire movement as a terrorist group and indefinitely detain anyone protesting on behalf of it.  It seems that they might even be organizing a response on a military level, if the reaction seen in the fall continues to gain momentum into the Spring and Summer, although it's uncertain as to whether the National movement will inflate or deflate in the summer months.  Some of the more wilder claims have been that Homeland Security, now merged with FEMA, has created camps that were designed for emergency relief which could be used for such indefinite detainment of such a large group.  While many of these camps have been maintained but have also remained dormant, some are being reported as having more activity.  Some have claimed that hiring for these camps began in February.  One such example is this video.  The author of this video claims that this "Internment Resettlement Specialist" hiring video was released by the National Guard, suggesting that these kind of workers will be needed in the event that the United States experiences significant trouble with political dissent.

It was also noted that I wouldn't be able to go into people's tents to prove that there were no weapons on the Green, because it was indicated that some people did actually have items that would be considered as such, perhaps for their own safety, but there nonetheless.  There's nothing not concerning about any of this.  Thoughts like these have and will occupy my time while these tents are on the New Haven Green, and for that reason I suppose they've been successful.

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