Edit 10/23/11 @ 6:09 AM: The very first feedback I received on this post was from an intelligent and thoughtful reader who notes that "I don't see you talking at all" in response to my "what the eff are we talking about here?" at the end. The mailer writes that it is all about conversing, asking questions and challenging the status quo and asks a question of his own about what I was hoping to find, the promised land? He saw me pointing a finger and poking fun.
So here is my answer: I wanted to find some of history. I wanted to find something different. I wanted to find someone talking about money printing and inflationary disenfranchisement. That is what the whole Fed shtick was about in the video (I admit the helicopters that flew over the Fed had me thinking about making tin foil hat jokes and got me unfocused). I did not want to find Kumbaya and bongos. I suppose I wanted to find something more focused on a message of the '99%' being so many of us stuck in the middle of a triad of the Democrat machinery, the Republican machinery and the Corporate machinery. With a side of Federal Reserve thrown in for good measure.
As for pointing a finger and making fun, I wish there was something to point a finger at. I kept muted my views on Socialism and Unionization. I let the signs pictured below, especially the first two, do the talking about things I care about. In fact, the entire story is in the pictures and I am not saying much, I agree. This is not about me talking and if it were, I would not have much to say because I have seen and heard everything I saw and heard yesterday before.
So, my point with this post is exactly what I thought I had already put across. OB is not ready for prime time and in need of a focused message if it hopes to be taken seriously. Now, my 2 hours may have missed something profound that will happen or has happened. Maybe the whole thing is profound and not to be judged on a 2 hour snippet in time. Maybe the kids organizing in the picture below were about to make history. I don't know. I just reported back - with some silliness I grant you - my impression. Believe me, if my consciousness were altered in any way, I'd have reported it, instead of making funny captions below the photos.
Sad to say, Occupy Boston is not ready for prime time. This is not to say there were not some good causes represented at OB aside from the pro-socialism, pro-union stuff. But my view upon walking through the little tent city, hearing some sloganeering and the prerequisite bongos playing non-stop, is that this is a real disappointment; a jumbled hodgepodge of stuff heard a million times in the 60's, with some of it even being relevant to the corporate culture that increasingly intertwines itself with our daily lives.
Boston is either a giant step behind New York (as usual), or Chris Hedges hallucinated his thought provoking piece A Movement Too Big To Fail as he wrote about OWS.
An interlude: A few weeks ago my friend Jonathan, whose brokerage shop is right in the middle of Manhattan, noted to me the cheery colors that New York's cutting edge fashionistas are wearing nowadays. This in contrast to the drabbed out "Tom Joad look a likes" he noted back on 2006/07 well before the crash. Flash to Boston's epic Head of the Charles Regatta and I have to tell you I have never seen so many people dressed in black out there by the banks of the River Charles. Good old Boston, still stuck in a bear market mentality while NYC's fashionable elite are already projecting bullish times ahead.
Back on message, as I approached the OB I was videoing myself (it is on the cutting room floor as this ain't about me) in front of Bank of America. A security guard came running and waving out of a little guard shack telling me "No no, no camera here!" "Why?" I asked, "I am only videoing myself talking." "No no, they do not want anyone to take pictures... they probably have YOU on video!" "Oh okay, well thanks for the info" says I, walking away feeling like I am in the middle of some alternate world with Michael Moore as its only other occupant.
Next I came upon a group of Boston's finest - really big dudes with really shiny motorcycles all in a perfect line. "Hi officers, do you mind if I get a photo?" Yes, barked the most important looking one. Okay then, moving on... I am starting to think this OB must be really big because these guys are deployed on a side street outside of the occupation area, just in case.
So much for first impressions.
Here is a little video in front of the Boston Federal Reserve. For some reason I felt more in my element hanging around at the Fed then I did at OB. When I was a little kid, my dad was driving my sister and me down Storrow Drive and we came upon a herd of hippies crossing the road to the Hatch Shell for a concert. I had my head out the window going 'moo, the cows are leaving' (like in the commercial from back then) and a hippie gave me the finger. I never liked hippies. So yeh, I felt more at home at the Fed than I did among the Socialist, Unionist, Marxist contingent of OB.
While I took more video from right inside OB, I think pictures will work better than bongos and slogans drilling away at your ears.
This is a sign I agree with, being a non DemoPublican myself.
And you know I agree with this one as well.
Doin' his own thing in his own time man, it's beautiful. To paraphrase Easy Rider.
I actually think I could win an award for this photo.
You mean greed is not good?
Not sure who he is, but he is obviously pretty important... and purple.
Same here bro.
Occupation can be taxing, and it can apparently be relaxing.
Gandhi and Doctor King were great men.
Tents, tents and more tents.
Yes it is, just like Capitalist Pig. Well, that's two words but...
Power to the people. Seriously I mean.
Young people organizing just off site.
But Chris Hedges said this has nothing to do with Democrats and unions and...
Like I said, there are some good points to be made here.
It's just people after all. And every last one has the right to assembly, speech, etc.
Just as I have a right to...
end my day as I see fit.
I do not want to minimize the circumstance that drove some of these people here. Corporate greed is after all, the reason I started doing this website and blog thing back in '04. Corporate greed, screwed up government and yup, the Federal Reserve banking system.
I just feel that the Occupy Boston segment of the revolution is not nearly where it needs to be. I am actually surprised there was not a 'Save the Whales' contingent. And I do not make light of that because cruelty toward, and exploitation of such beautiful creatures actually breaks my heart. But what the f__k are we talking about here? Come on people... FOCUS!