Flash Encampments

Occupy morphs into a new model!


Hey all you wild cats, do-gooders and steadfast rebels out there,

Our movement is living through a painful rebirth… “There has been a unfortunate consolidation of power in #OWS,” writes one founding Zuccotti. “This translates into ideological dominance and recurring lines of thought. We are facing a nauseating poverty of ideas.” Burned out, out of money, out of ideas… seduced by salaries, comfy offices, book deals, old lefty cash and minor celebrity status, some of the most prominent early heroes of our leaderless uprising are losing the edge that catalyzed last year’s one thousand encampments. Bit by bit, Occupy’s first generation is succumbing to an insidious institutionalization and ossification that could be fatal to our young spiritual insurrection unless we leap over it right now. Putting our movement back on track will take nothing short of a revolution within Occupy.

The new tone was set on Earth Day, April 22, in a suburb bordering Berkeley, California when a dozen occupiers quietly marched a small crowd to a tract of endangered urban agricultural land, cut through the locked fence and set up tents, kitchens and a people’s assembly. Acting autonomously under the banner of Occupy, without waiting for approval from any preexisting General Assembly, Occupy The Farm was notable for its sophisticated preplanning and careful execution — they even brought chickens — that offered a positive vision for the future and engendered broad community support. While encampments across the world were unable to re-establish themselves on May Day, this small cadre of farm occupiers boldly maintained their inspiring occupation for nearly four weeks.

In Minneapolis, a core of occupiers have launched an Occupy Homes campaign that is unique for its edgy tenacity. “What is unusual, in fact utterly unprecedented, is the level of aggression and defiance of the law by these activists,” a spokesperson for Freddie Mac, a U.S. corporation that trades in mortgages, told a local paper. “Over the past week … the city has tossed out protesters and boarded up the house, only to see the demonstrators peel back the boards and use chains, concrete-filled barrels and other obstacles to make it more difficult to carry them away,” the article reports. Last Friday, police were so desperate to prevent a re-occupation of the foreclosed home that they surrounded the house with “30 Minneapolis police officers with batons” and “over two dozen marked and undercover squad cars and a paddy wagon.” Occupiers responded by laughing and signing songs… joyous in their struggle to elevate the home into an symbol of democratic resistance to the banks.

In its own sweet way, our movement is now moving beyond the Zuccotti model and developing a tactical imperative of its own: Small groups of fired up second generation occupiers acting independently, swiftly and tenaciously pulling off myriad visceral local actions, disrupting capitalist business-as-usual across the globe.

The next big bang to capture the world’s imagination could come not from a thousand encampments but from a hundred thousand ephemeral jams… a global cascade of flash encampments may well be what this hot Summer will look like.

Meanwhile, tents are up once again in Tahrir Square and youth from Quebec to Auckland to Moscow to Oakland are rising up against a future that does not compute.

Stay loose, play jazz, keep the faith … Capitalism is crashing and our movement has just begun.

for the wild,
Culture Jammers HQ / Tactical Briefing #34

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126 comments on the article “Flash Encampments”

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Well, hell. Who wants to take on a foe that commits routinely and ritual public murders against whole populations while everybody in the western democracies look on dumbly, and of course, sheepishly? And who wants to go back to the barricades to let this foe's domestic forces know what's up? So here we go again with another round of theory and pontification from "writers" or scripters, if you prefer. Don't waste your time. You know who humanity's enemy is. We must do more than will its destruction and another article proposing will alone verges on intentional misdirection. Shameful.


Iraq, Libya and perhaps Syria. A foe that routinely murders whole populations - NATO and the US Government?


P.S. When the media are cheer-leading for war, weak, second-hand or sexed-up information is often shown as a true account of events. Yet, when someone tries to put another point-of-view, no amount of debate, reasoning or evidence is enough. That said, given NATO are looking for "reasons" to start bombing, the Syrian government would have be totally mad to start killing its' own people. Honestly, what sense would this make?

And, for anyone that did check out the evidence posted, please watch (Who is "A Gay Girl in Damascus"?) on YouTube. In light of who the "Gay Girl" turned out be, this BBC Newsnight interview makes for interesting viewing.


You people are so done:

From the article:

"While the movement's signature triumph has been to draw worldwide attention to income inequality in America and elsewhere, some who are sympathetic say it has nevertheless failed a crucial test of social movements: the ability to adapt and grow through changing tactics.

'Most of the social scientists who are at all like me - unsentimental leftists - ... think this movement is over,' said Harvard University professor Theda Skocpol, a liberal academic...

'But Occupy got bogged down in tent cities. In social movement literature we'd argue that there was a failure to engage in tactical innovation at a crucial time.'"

Looks like OWS is failing because of an ingrained inability to play jazz. Ironic, isn't it?


Yawn. A limousine liberal at HARVARD - the university that churns out crooked CEOs, politicians and banksters - thinks ows is "over".

If it's so over, why do you and these Propagandist pieces keep yakking about it?


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