Home > Uncategorized > Guest post: we should not get out-imagined again

Guest post: we should not get out-imagined again

November 16, 2016

This is an anonymous guest post.

I am a member of Cathy’s Occupy group, and like a lot of people, had a really bad week. By Sunday I thought I was feeling better. It seemed some of the sadness and shock had passed, and I was developing a resolve about how to move forward.

Then I had a really weird experience Sunday night. I came into the City to attend a black-tie event at the Waldorf in support of an organization I really like, even if it raises a lot of its money from the .001%.

As a labor lawyer and Occupier, it is not my crowd. But I usually find the event amusing. They serve sushi for cocktails and pour Makers Mark into wine glasses, like it is wine.

I walked in and immediately felt strange, actually felt really sick. It was like being in an historical re-enactment, precisely because everything was the same. I went for the Makers Mark early. It only made the disembodied feeling worse. Nothing, nothing, had changed from years past. The beautiful young women in the exquisite dresses were the same. The conversation among the supremely confident looking men seemed the same.

I was not the same.

I got another drink and went to my table. Then, like everyone else, I rose for the National Anthem.

I started feeling super weird though, because everyone else was carrying on so completely normally. I thought of kneeling like Collin Kaepernick, but figured my wife would kill me. Then came “My Country Tisethy” and the room just started swirling.

I sat down and took a breath. They started introducing the first honoree: Hank Greenberg. Yes, the guy in charge of AIG until shortly before it blew up the world economy. The guy who sued the government alleging that the $182 billion bailout his company got was on inadequately advantageous terms. In other words, one of the guys most responsible for elite behaviors that led to this most awful eruption of fear, resentment and hate, that led to last Tuesday.

And all I heard was the introduction of him as a “Great American”.

I walked briskly out of the room, then ran fast through the hotel halls and down Park Ave to my car. Where I sat, for I don’t know how long, and just cried. Cried like a fucking baby. Cried for having to look out my car window at what seemed now like an unfamiliar place, cried for the kid in the Bronx who doesn’t know yet about the threat people think he poses to “law and order,” cried for the family in some far off country that doesn’t know about the charade war coming their way to assuage an angry people losing its collective mind over broken empty promises, cried for all the people who, after I’m gone, will live on a chaotic planet my purposefully ignorant country cooked. Damn, I cried hard.

Then I stopped. And I felt a lot better.

It feels so weird to share this publicly, because it is really embarrassing. I really did all that. But I figured out what it was and wanted to say it out loud. It is moral injury. It is real. It hurts. It can make you cry. Don’t try to pretend otherwise. But also take solace that the only way to treat it is to do good anyway.

There are going to be a lot of opportunities. But we should not get out-imagined again, as I surely was. We should shoot really high this time, be really creative about the good we can do.

For example, if you think our national government will remain awful for a long time, you are probably right. So think locally and globally. What stops us from creating real “sanctuary cities, ” ones that are sanctuaries in such a wider sense, to all of the people he has declared hated or who otherwise just reject him? And why cant we make contact, seek advice, and give aid to the 99.9% of the world that is far more affected by this than us, and got no vote? Again, they are the ones who will otherwise get bombed when he starts dumb wars to distract from his mindless policies; and get drowned and fried when he turns up the temperature on the already sizzling planet.

And remember, 2017 is an election year in New York City. Yes, there is another election coming up which it would feel really good to WIN. Let’s demand better. The Left has never said “think nationally” … no, it is has always been Local and Global.

Feel the pain; it is real; cry; and then gather a stronger opposing force to treat it by occupying the spaces that remain up for the taking.

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. November 16, 2016 at 8:08 am

    All Politics Is Loco 😜

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  2. AC
    November 16, 2016 at 8:23 am

    Les belles âmes…

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  3. November 16, 2016 at 8:23 am

    I am not anonymous. I have voted and seen many elections and in many I did not always get the desired outcome. Never cried. Accepted the will of the people. Democracy. There’s always a next election.

    But somethings are gone forever. I did not vote because I fulfilled the final request of my life partner, spouse, and hero of 41 years, to be buried in the country where she was born, next to her parents. For that I cried. Multiple times.

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  4. November 16, 2016 at 10:54 am

    Elements of the 0.1 percent, the autocratic self-appointed billionaire oligarchs, have been infiltrating non-profit organizations that once did good for the 99.9 percent in the U.S. and around the world, and have spent hundreds of millions of dollars if not billions subverting them and our elected government. They’ve been doing this for years, decades even.

    Have you seen the info-graphic of the Kochtopus, for instance? If they can’t take over one of the legitimate organizations that does good, they launch a clone using simliar language to promote it and give it a popular, patriotic name designed to mislead. They are legion.

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  5. November 17, 2016 at 4:58 am

    I’m not a U.S. citizen but I expected and would have preferred Clinton to win. I bet against both of them, but lost more on the Trump win 🙂

    Now I’m reading articles every day how fake news influenced people, how strong confirmation bias really is, how media got it all wrong and didn’t listen to the people, people are in a bubble and read only their side of the story etc. It is starting to feel ironic. This is now done to explain the “mistake of the people” which is the Trump victory.

    I’m thinking maybe I should question my belief Clinton was the better choice. I know, she won the popular vote but a LOT of people voted for him. Was I really right to think Trump was the wrong choice for the U.S.?

    As a Euro one of the things I find hard to believe is how quickly politicians are rolling over here and immediately preparing or talking about spending more on defense because the U.S. won’t be doing it under Trump…

    I’m like WTF you are representing me? Maybe you shouldn’t roll over just yet. Trump is changing some of the discourse without having lifted a finger. It’s not great for me as a Euro but it’s one thing that could be a positive for the U.S. that I didn’t anticipate.

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    • November 17, 2016 at 10:12 pm

      I am actually hoping Trump does decrease military spending such that the Euro and other countries will need to pick up the slack more. In 2012 the US spent $902.2 BILLION on defense. Would be nice to see some of that go toward Education ($153.1 Billion) or paying off debt to decrease interest paid ($224.8 Billion).

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  6. November 17, 2016 at 8:24 am

    Trumpism is a disease of the Body Politic that will have to run its course.
    Its virulence guarantees that the course will be quick.
    We can but hope the Patient survives.

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    • November 17, 2016 at 8:55 am

      And now you know how the other side felt after the previous two elections.

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      • November 17, 2016 at 9:34 am

        Thanks, Peewee, for that segue to the “I know you are but what am I” segment, but I already know how demagogues exploit people’s fears of losing what they have to make them throw it all away.

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        • November 17, 2016 at 10:38 am

          No idea what you are saying. No idea why you engage in name calling.

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  7. November 17, 2016 at 6:19 pm

    How about a national day of mourning – wear black, have public services for our broken system, cry together – on the day he gets sworn in…

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