Why I Support Occupy

It should not really come as very much of a surprise to long-time readers of this blog (hi, Mum) that I'm a lefty-liberal type of some description (exact details are vague and hard to come by). This does not imply that I am a crazy lefty-liberal type of some description; I can use logic just as well as you think you can, thank you very much for asking.

It should also not really come as a surprise, then, that I support the Occupy movement. (Could be that the next week is dedicated to this, could be that I do something completely different, it really depends on my mood.) I don't support it because I want to look cool or meet girls. I'm not evil - at least, I don't consider myself as evil and I try not to do evil things.

I support Occupy because the current system demonstrably isn't working. It is unsustainable: by relying on continuous growth, it presupposes infinite resources. We live on a planet with finite resources. There are quite obvious logical flaws here. More to the point, it's unethical - it is based on greed, the accumulation of as much stuff as possible at the expense of anyone else. It exploits and oppresses the many to enrich the few who ended up on top mostly by luck. This system therefore neither works well nor does it look after the planet as a whole.

One of the things I like most about Occupy is the sheer hope: move, notice your chains, figure out a way to break them. I can talk to intelligent people about what's wrong with the world and how best to fix it - because what we have is wrong and bad, and I think it would be good to do better next time. Capitalism is not here to stay. Neither is it the best system we will ever have. I support a movement of people trying to save the world in some way or another, and Occupy is the thing I've pinned my hopes on to do that. It also keeps me sane and alive, but that's another matter.

Even if the Occupy movement crumbles into dust, it will have given us one important legacy: hope for the future. It may be, and almost certainly is, possible to change things - but only if people are willing to stick their necks out. Now, I veer between being ecstatic and utterly despondent; I am utterly despondent each time the governments of the world trample on dissent and free speech, I despair that nothing will ever get done, yet I'm also idealistic and hopeful, because I've seen things to fuel my idealism and give me hope, and I'm prepared to turn that idealism and hope into something that might just help us climb out of the pit we're in.

Who's with me, I wonder?