A search of the email cache that BigGovernment released last week reveals that the #Occupy movement is largely driven by socialists and anarchists who realize they need to conceal their actual message and goals in order to appeal to the political mainstream. The goal of #Occupy is to build large enough numbers where a ‘mob mentality’ takes over so they achieve their real aim of overthrow, as evidenced by a statement from one of the #Occupy movement’s earliest and strongest advocates:
…when the numbers are big enough, they will feel their oats, get impatient, and start demanding more than you could have imagined. (Never underestimate mob mentality.) But if you talk about overthrowing governments, capitalism or wholesale changes, most of the 99% will be scared off, and we’ll never have the power we need to affect real change.
This “Trojan Horse” agenda of deceiving the public about the real nature of the #Occupy movement was discussed in casual terms in the emails by John McGloin, a New Yorker who was one of the early organizers of #Occupy this past summer. I spoke with Mr. McGloin this week to confirm his involvement in the #OccupyWallStreet demonstration at the earliest possible stage, and I have included his (unedited) response to this article below.
In a story on CBS New York’s website in early September about the early planning for “Occupy Wall Street,” McGloin acts as a sort of unofficial spokesman in the comments section. His remarks indicate that he is clearly involved in the event planning, and he fields questions and invites people to participate in the #Occupy event.
In the email cache, McGloin introduced himself on October 8th and said he had been working with the “General Assembly” of the movement a month and a half before #Occupy launched:
I have been working with the GA on OWS since August 2, and I have been working with many of the occupiers since before that. We are the most fiercely inclusive group I have ever met. We want to include all of the 99%. We all came together because we are trying to save the world, and we know we need everyone to do it
In a phone conversation, Mr. McGloin confirmed to me that he was one of about one hundred protesters sitting on the ground near Wall Street’s famous Bull statute on August 2nd when the protestors decided to take up Adbusters on its suggestion to “Occupy Wall Street.” Although he works a full-time job, Mr. McGloin remains commited to Occupy Wall Street and told me that he spends as much time there as he possibly can.
On the email list, McGloin had explained that since he isn’t a socialist or anarchist, he’s in the minority at #Occupy.
I am a middle aged white male. I hate saying that. I was raised to interact with people as individuals and to judge their actions and not their identities. I am not a socialist or an anarchist, so I am under represented at OWS, but I am trying to save the world, so I keep putting forth my opinions even though many of my opinions are not popular, and doing outreach to everyone I know, even though many of my friends are not socialists or anarchists.
Of course, since people who aren’t socialists and anarchists are “under represented at #OWS”, this creates something of a recruiting problem for drawing in large numbers of people. In another email exchange from earlier in October, McGloin provided a strategy to overcome that problem–namely, that #Occupy should appear reasonable in order to build a big enough “mob.”
The exchange began with someone named Snafu talking about how he had heard an Occupy Wall Street spokesperson who wasn’t radical sounding enough for him. Sanfu suggested that the activists needed spokespeople who were actually radical but who sounded reasonable.
Just heard a guy at the Brian Lehrer Show on WNYC, who called in as an OWS “spokesperson” and claimed to be “in charge of security at the park.” The radio show was about how Wall Street traders and workers feel about the occupation. He said that he wanted the radio conversation to happen in the square (on which I can agree) and then added that OWS is not about class warfare but about getting things done and bringing about change. The overall tone was that of a reassuring middle-class guy speaking to middle America.
While this communicative style may help expand our ranks, it will also help change the social composition of the movement in such a way that if any reforms are ever passed, they will be probably so watered-down that they will change in fact nothing. I am not sure how spokespersons are selected and whether this guy (who claimed to have appeared on several TV programs as well) has anything to do with the PR firm mentioned in this thread.
But I want to raise the point that this way of communicating can have serious political consequences, some of which may not be that desirable. I think we should try and select spokespersons who are able to express a more radical point of view in a reasonable way.
John McGloin countered:
I actually think your stategy is backward. The way i see it first you get large numbers of people to join by showing how reasonable you are. Then when the numbers are big enough, they will feel their oats, get impatient, and start demanding more than you could have imagined. (Never underestimate mob mentality.) But if you talk about overthrowing governments, capitalism or wholesale changes, most of the 99% will be scared off, and we’ll never have the power we need to affect real change. In order to fight the global coporations I estimate we need a minimum of 15 million Americans on the street. There are not 15 million radical socialist/anarchists in the US. We need people without political agendas, but with anger at coporations.
Clearly, the #OccupyWallStreet movement is not a spontaneous gathering. It’s a planned, calculated move by socialists, anarchists and associated wannabe radicals to create a larger movement, something that they have been unable to do because their actual goals and values would be so repulsive to most ordinary Americans that they would have no hope of breaking past ‘lunatic fringe’ status. With the help of the press and the President, however, they just might be able to break out this time.
I asked Mr. McGloin if we wanted to comment on this article and he sent me the following statement, which Big Government is reprinting in full, unedited.
Statement Of John McGloin To Big Government
There are no leaders or official spokesmen of Occupy Wall Street. The entire point is to give control of the government back to the people. Right now global corporations use their vast wealth to control the debate and corrupt congress. The master plan of the libertarians, conservatives, liberals, socialists, anarchists, and others involved in the General Assembly is to give voice to all of the people.
There is no trojan horse strategy. We do nothing in secret. We come to consensus on our message in public parks, and on a discussion group that anyone can get on. As the article says we are fiercely inclusive. The most radical people in the General Assembly are the ones that are deeply committed to waiting until most of the 99% are involved, “and feel their oats,” before we make any demands, so that all of the people can decide what to do together.
Only if you think that a majority of Americans are looking to overthrow the system, should you be worried about the 99% having a voice. I have repeatedly said that I, and most Americans, have no interest in changing the constitution, except possibly through amendments. But most of us do believe that the prevalent extreme market fetishism, which has little to do with capitalist textbook economics, and which seeks to replace one person, one vote with 1 billion dollars, 1 billion votes, is not what Americans believe in. Americans know that cooperation is at least as important as competition, and that mega-bank losses should not be socialized while their profits are privatized.