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My only encounter with an OWS group  RSS feed

 
Robert Ray
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I appreciate the idea of Occuppy Wall Street and directing change in the monetary influence in politics. Media bias, corporate greed somethings I personally feel need to be adressed for true democratic leadership.
However last weekend a group of 5 OWS participants, kids in their 20's, stopped in my auto parts store to purchase a battery. They asked for the best deal since they were from Medford going to Portland to "occupy".
They payed with a B of A credit card. When the apparent leader of the group returned the old battery for core credit he indicated that he couldn't understand why the old battery failed since it was still heavy and obviously still full of electricity. The look on my face must have given away my disbelief, probably even more when he told me to go ahead and feel it to see how heavy it was and to confirm that it was still full. When I asked him if he was serious he assured me that the battery was probably still good if I could figure out how to get the electricity out.
Please tell me that those claiming to represent me, and my small percentage of the 99%, really are a bit more.................... worldly perhaps would be a term to use.
 
Dale Hodgins
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   There are millions more like him. The state of education? Drugs? Inbreeding? Or self-ritious buffoons who get all of their knowledge from self help ,new agey trite? 

   This sort of ignorance seldom exists in isolation. It is more likely representitive of a giant swamp of muck residing between his ears.  Imagine if "our" representative gets in front of a camera and is asked something mathematical.It could get even sillier.

  His parents should be ashamed.

    We are not all equal intellectually and this young man has shown that some of us aren't bright enough to lead a singalong.
 
paul wheaton
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Within the 99% there will be some that are smarter than others. 

At 16 it seems most folks know everything there is to know about everything (except maybe whether that special someone "likes you back"

And then at around 18 you find out that the world really is like what your parents said, but you are determined to proves that your parents are the stupid twits that you know, for a fact, that they are. 

After about six months of living on your own, one learns that the world is backwards and is way, way, WAY too hard.  This is so unreasonable, it is just wrong. 

After a couple of years (age 20), you start to optimize things so it is just "suck light". 

A battery is an amazing thing and I doubt that more than 5% of the population REALLY understands how a lead acid battery works. 




 
Robert Ray
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Ok,
Point taken, I guess I wouldn't want to be judged about what I knew at 20 and compared to what I know now. However I did know how a battery worked. Yet I still don't know what electricity weighs.
 
Dale Hodgins
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    I had grand plans to go all "devils advocate" on the boy but Paul has given a subtle reminder to be nice. So, I'm going to go off and sulk now that this glorious oportunity for pontification has been nipped in the bud.
 
John Polk
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Reminds me of when I was moderating a computer oriented site.  A nOOb once asked if anybody knew how much his 500 gig HD would weigh once it was filled to capacity.

There were a lot of tongue-in-cheek replies such as it depended on the kind of data stored.  "Obviously" 1's would weigh more than 0's.
 
Tyler Ludens
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Personally I don't think a thread making fun of ignorant young people is at all nice. 

 
Robert Ray
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There is a difference between ignorant and uneducated in my book.
The young man just didn't know. I just thought it ironic in how he paid for his purchase and  for lack of a perfect term, his life experience. As I indicated this young man if he was even old enough to vote in the last election really couldn't have a lot of life experience which I think is important. I applaud his efforts in wanting to to participate
I have since had another encounter with an occupy participant  from Eugene, older, articulate, I agreed with some of her ideas yet her only vigorous complaint about her experience was the homeless came camped out and ate their food. The event is apparently on UofO property and she left because they removed the porta potties, and it sounds as if they will be asked to leave.
It would not hurt my feelings one bit if Paul removed this thread.
 
ellen rosner
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H Ludi Tyler wrote:
Personally I don't think a thread making fun of ignorant young people is at all nice.   



I gotta say, I love anecdotes. They prove so much. Around the country, on talk shows, radio, tv, forums, letters to the editor, anecdotes arise:
these people pee in the street, they use drugs, sexual harrassment takes place, they have long hair, they don't wash....
lol.

When people cannot counter the arguments of a movement they fasten on unimportant details and unfounded allegations.
It is a way of dishonoring the arguments.

Case in point: today everybody loves Dr. ML King, and everybody thinks the civil rights movement was a good thing.
But I am old enough to remember that Dr. King was called a communist, he was shadowed by the FBI, his character was under attack.
Why?
Because people wanted to dishonor the ideals he stood for.

Same old, same old.....
 
Robert Ray
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In the end I hope OWS energizes people to direct change in substantial stuff and it is not wasted on fluff.
Tremendous energy that has the potential for dramatic changes, it sitll doesn't assuage my fears of it slowing down without leaders.
 
paul wheaton
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H Ludi Tyler wrote:
Personally I don't think a thread making fun of ignorant young people is at all nice.   


I have to admit that it makes me uncomfortable.  But probably not for the same reasons.

Permies.com was divided from richsoil because I felt it was important to separate my personal rants from a burgeoning community.  That was a huge amount of work. 

So there is a part of me that wants to have a good laugh, and a bigger part of me that is focused on the mission of these forums and set a good precedent.

As others have mentioned, I think it is good to consider the full picture, which includes some folks that think a fully charged battery is heavier than a battery that doesn't hold a charge.  I also think it is healthy to explore within ourselves that a person talking about hugelkultur can be right even though they have no idea how to drive a car.

I also like how some people that have a high post count can come to an awkward thread and say things to help get discussion into a more appropriate track. 

And, I think that folks that are getting a higher post count, should, by now, be getting better at demonstrating good, healthy discussion.

I think this thread brings up some good topics that can be discussed in a healthy and appropriate way.

If you need to fully express yourself in a way that does not fit this forum, I encourage you to have your own blog, say what you gotta say there, and you can link to that from here - possibly with a note explaining why part of your comments are somewhere else.

In the mean time, I encourage folks to edit their posts with the idea of getting this thread to stand as a demonstration of what healthy discussion looks like.
 
Tyler Ludens
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Thank you, Paul.

Talking about how we might become better informed and help others become better informed is a useful discussion, I think.

 
paul wheaton
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Robert Ray wrote:
Yet I still don't know what electricity weighs.


In college, I learned that on monday, wednesday and friday, it would be a particle.  And the rest of the week, it's a wave.  So it depents on what day of the week you try to weigh it.

(this is the meaningless drivel forum after all)

 
Robert Ray
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My intent was to show the irony, paying with a Bank of America card and my second encounter apparent participants disgust at the homeless, a definite part of the 99%, participating at an event and the dissapointment of being inconvenienced by the removal of the porta potties.
Hard to travel without a credit card, can hardly rent a motel room, safer than carrying cash, what if you break down, so it is a no win really. Some may be homeless due to the current economic situation. My daughter's boyfriend is trying to save his house due to a decreased demand in the construction market.
  I still think the weight of electricity is funny and I can laugh at myself when I say silly things.
  I've been in no way duplicitous in my opinion that leaders are needed for agendas to succeed, or my concern that those participating can't really truthfully claim to represent the whole 99%. To have one dismiss/dishonour my input to the discussion as one of the 99% is contrary to healthy consensus building. I don't think you will find any of my posts where I have expressed any thing that would indicate OWS itself was bad. Personal observations and interaction is all I've described here. I've reread my OWS posts made eselwhere and have seen no unfounded allegations that I have made.
  Ignorance is when you know better and still act and uninformed or uneducated is something you can overcome.
Paul pointing out that only 5% know the way a lead acid battery works could easily be used anectdotally that probably only 5% know about the Glass-Steagal act. Participating at a OWS I'm sure would be enlightening, empowering, entertaining and educational.
I didn't intend for it to be contencious, and I encourage you to laugh at me  when I do something silly, but please don't take it personal when I laugh at you when you say something silly, especially in the meaningless drivel forum. There is nothing wrong with being passionate about something, but look in a mirror when defending it.
Not many parents can say they have not laughed at their childrens faux paux's, not out of meanness, just because it strikes your funny bone. Definitely not because we don't want them to succeed but because we remember once we put our tongue on the cold flagpole too.
 
paul wheaton
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As we try to find a better path, we are faced with a lot of hard choices.  I am about to burn gasoline to travel to the inland northwest permaculture conference.  I suppose I could have left a few days early and bicycled there.  Dilemma. 

I like the idea that when we spot somebody that is further down on the wheaton eco scale that we try to help them to the next level.  Although my instinct is to point and laugh (to meet my humor needs) I am trying to be a better person.

I like the idea that we all own our mistakes and we are all trying to be better.


 
ellen rosner
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paul wheaton wrote:
In college, I learned that on monday, wednesday and friday, it would be a particle.  And the rest of the week, it's a wave.  So it depents on what day of the week you try to weigh it.

(this is the meaningless drivel forum after all)


The New York Times took up a similar question:
Q. When an e-reader is loaded with thousands of books, does it gain any weight?

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/25/science/25qna.html

---even on the meaningless drivel forum these are weighty questions. 
 
Phil Hawkins
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Here is an interesting opinion piece on how the Occupy movement is being attacked by members of the more traditional "left" groups.

This particular quote from the article reminded me of some of the sentiment expressed in this thread (and elsewhere, including by me!):

"Tim Dunlop, author of the article" wrote:If you think the movement lacks the intellectual firepower that is necessary for you to take it seriously, why not address that directly by joining in and raising the standards rather than sniping from the sidelines? How else are you going to get the sort of political action you approve of?
 
Robert Ray
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Whoa whoa whoa..... My definition of meaningless drivel is definitely not apparently some of the others here. What I saw as a clear incident of irony, using a BofA card to make a purchase by  a young guy who was going to make a change at an OWS event, and his unknowing innocent idea that weight of a battery indicated the presence of elctricity inside.
The second incident where a slightly older female participated was disgusted that homeless people came participated and ate the same food that all others ate. She further went on to say that she left because the porta potties were going to be removed and she was afraid they were going to be asked to leave. To me another ironic event

You have to be able to laugh at yourself or you're just not living.

Maybe my kindle is getting to full, it seems to fall on my face as I read it in bed and doze off and it hurts more than a paperback.

Now not meaningless but to answer Phil I am by no means static in political involvement and I am by no means one who would be called left. I truly believe that there is power in numbers but also believe that power has to be directed ( one of my consistent concerns).

Back to meaningless let's look at Oakland, so the news indicates 3000 people were able to shut down the Port. Oakland isn't huge with a population of 391,000 app. and I hate to say it but i see it a bit ironic here that that's about 1%
 
Smile life is short and as I have always said I hope that OWS energizes political involvement.
 
Phil Hawkins
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Robert Ray wrote:Now not meaningless but to answer Phil I am by no means static in political involvement and I am by no means one who would be called left. I truly believe that there is power in numbers but also believe that power has to be directed ( one of my consistent concerns).

Sorry Ray - wasn't directing anything at you (or anyone else in particular, apart from myself), in hindsight I should have phrased it differently.  I was saying that it was interesting that "the left" (no doubt in addition to the conservative "right" were attacking the Occupy movement, as the author suggests.

The sentiment I thought resonated was merely "This is great, I wish they did a better job of it" as distinct from "These listless hippies need to go get jobs" (which is the sentiment expressed more commonly in media).
 
Robert Ray
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Interesting, do you feel the media in your neck of the woods influence politics as I do here?
 
Phil Hawkins
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Is the pope catholic!?

Opinion polls drive most policy making here, and opinion polls are mostly driven by the media. The outlet I linked you to is the federal government funded service (I dunno, a little like NPR?), and I think a quite balanced one at that. But certainly it doesn't have much influence on public policy, because most of the public don't use it as their news source.

We have a Rush Limbaugh clone in each state, all singing from the same song book, telling everyone that climate change isn't happening, the Green-Labor government is destroying the country, even though we have the highest standard of living in the world, we're doing it sooooo tough, and we need to be fearful of African migrants and "illegal" asylum seekers arriving by boat from Asia
 
Tyler Ludens
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My ability to detect humor and/or irony in a messageboard post varies wildly from day to day.    There's loads of irony in the Occupy movement.  It's hugely ironic that the Occupy movement is largely possible because of transnational corporations.  We could use this ironic state of affairs to discredit the whole movement, if we wanted to.  And I'm sure some people do.

Look, they're driving cars!

Look, they're using money!

Look, they're eating food bought from the store!

Look, they're using computers and iPhones!

Look, they're wearing clothing bought from the store!

etc....

The same criticism can be leveled at a lot of permaculturists. 

<<<points at self 
 
Phil Hawkins
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I wonder if there's an internet forum specifically for Luddites that want to coordinate destroying modern technology together.

I did read once about a site that was set up to decry social networking sites.  This anti-social site eventually fostered quite the community of people that would all enjoy commenting on one another's posts ... and then the owner realised that he'd created a social networking site.
 
Robert Ray
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Yes an anti-social site an "ASS", maybe I should look into that, well maybe not I apparently make enough of an ass of myself here.
 
Tyler Ludens
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I went to a bank protest action and an Occupy action today in the city. Lots of older people at the bank protest and mostly younger people with a few older and some veterans at the Occupy march.  People were well behaved and had intelligent signs and conversation.

Here's a couple pictures from Occupy San Antonio today:





My little sign:

 
Robert Ray
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Relax..................... just a question why are they wearing masks.
 
Phil Hawkins
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nancy sutton wrote:
"why are they wearing masks?"  Why are our 'militarized' police forces routinely filming demonstrators of any stripe?

So that when (sorry, if) someone decides to start throwing petrol bombs, the police know who to charge. I would never trust someone wearing a mask. I'm not suggesting for a moment that violence is anything the the OWS folk advocate, but the problem with a loose association of motivated citizens is that the organizers can say what they like, but they have no control over who is there, and what methods they deem acceptable to make their point.

nancy sutton wrote:BTW, using a credit card is very useful when you pay it off every month, and the bank makes no $ off of you

Except your prices are artificially inflated to cover the costs of providing that "free" service. Banking is kind of like a casino - the house always wins in the end.
 
nancy sutton
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"why are they wearing masks?"  Why are our 'militarized' police forces routinely filming demonstrators of any stripe?

Loved The Daily Show's piece on the OWS - first showing the theatrical silliness, and then the 'average' folks in a local restaurant expressing their support, then leaving to go to their errands........ not to join those 'doing something' about the problems

I think the drumbeat of "get some leaders" betrays our insecurity with thinking independently and laterally - we are trained to fall into hierarchical line.  (Re: this, see the CityScooter; Global Village Construction;  collaboration, etc.)

And, I love this so I'll repeat it again -  "First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they attack you (having a 'leader' makes that easier), and then you win".

BTW, using a credit card is very useful when you pay it off every month, and the bank makes no $ off of you

I think it keeps getting lost that the OWS has no problem with the wealth of the 1% - it's the fraudulent and unethical way that it was/is acquired.  Deprived of that unfair advantage, there would be more available for the 99%. 
 
Robert Ray
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For a post that I had hoped would be one  of levity..weight of electricity it has become a bit more political than I had dreamed. I hope the post as it stands isn't removed but perhaps locked.

Heard this the other day, "Pleasing everyone is impossible pissing everyone off is easy".
 
Tyler Ludens
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Some of them are wearing masks because they are part of the Anonymous group, but mostly because the theme of this march was "The Masked March."  Apparently they have different themes on different days.

More about Anonymous:  http://www.whatis-theplan.org/t1-what-is-the-plan#1
 
Tyler Ludens
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Here's an article about the Occupiers the day before I went, when two of them got married.  You can see the scary masked folks are there too. 

http://www.mysanantonio.com/slideshows/news/slideshow/Occupy-S-A-protesters-tie-the-knot-31913.php
 
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