Occupy protesters demonstrate resilience to crackdowns and cynicism in the media but it is still unclear what lies ahead for the movement.Abby Martin, founder of Mediaroots.org, says that Occupy can become a real political force.
While camping out and singing songs is one thing, getting the right politicians elected quite another. Martin says that the movement is unified and people are waking up to the two-party dictatorship, and realizing that the political system does not represent them anymore.
”A lot of people tried to paint this movement as not unified and we do not have a cohesive message, but as far as I can see we have one message and it is corporate greed and we are not standing for it anymore,” she declared. “No matter what your sign says, it all stems from the same source and that is corporate greed running amok.”
Martin believes it was a huge success for the movement when up to 20,000 people peacefully marched and successfully shut down the Port of Oakland. She says that getting their point across justifies shutting down America’s fifth largest port.
“It was almost necessary to get the point across, no-one is really listening to us. Mainstream media is trying to marginalize this movement. So maybe it will take something like that to really get people to recognize our force,” she said.
The mainstream media in US accuses the Occupy movement of being envious of the rich. Martin laughs it off arguing that it is about disenfranchisement and the extreme desperation that people are seeing.
”The rich keep getting richer. We are talking about corporations not paying taxes. Why should we? It is a two-tier justice system. We are held to a different sort of justice system in America. We are not standing for it anymore,” she says.
Allan Rivlin, co-editor of CenteredPolitics.com, says there is an explanation why people are demanding a change in the rules that have been in effect for decades.
“I think the success of the movement is the simplicity of the message,” he says. “They got it down to four words: ‘We are the 99%’. And that message, as simple as it is, really cuts to the heart of what a lot of people are experiencing, which is a tremendous inequality that has been growing for years. They are also seeing a system that is out of balance with respect to too much corporate influence over politicians and over Congress.”