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BARBICAN LIFE


Uncomfortable viewpoints Barbicania


S


o the Occupy movement, which was perhaps beginning to run out of steam, has been ejected from outside St. Paul’s. It remains though very much in evidence in Finsbury Square, although there appears to be dissension between the St. Paul’s and Finsbury Square factions – the latter seeming to be more of an eco-protest as opposed to a more virulent anti-bank and


financial institutions one. I can’t say I’m sorry that the eyesore outside St. Paul’s has been removed and people working in the area will be able to get back to something approaching normal, but perhaps the agenda of the Occupy protests is worth examining anyway. Sreela Banerjee, in her article in this issue entitled Adventures in the Discomfort


Zone wonders whether, in fact, the Occupy protestors do have a point. There are indeed facets of the way the system is run which is worthy of further examination, and probably of change. But perhaps the Occupy protestors are going about things the wrong way and actually alienating supportive ‘uncomfortable’ viewpoints from emerging because we don’t like the way they have gone about the protest, and we are naturally unsympathetic to many of those who have supported that particular cause in that particular manner. This is hardly helped by the anarchist and homeless hangers on who joined the encampment and may thus have diluted the original message One might consider those who participated as being largely from left wing, or anarchist, groups but it is interesting to note that the message they should perhaps have been raising awareness of with a little more focus would probably attract attention from right across the political spectrum. Echoes of the main thrust of the protests against capitalism and democracy as


practised western-style nowadays which the protestors were trying to put across can be found in far right wing thinking as well. Take this quote from a U.S.-based newsletter which many would put as having strong conservative right-wing viewpoints: “democracy, as practiced by th developed countries, is a fraud. It is just a way for th from th


e US and oth e outsiders, by pretending th circa 2012, h at th e voters are in ch as no more in common with real democracy th


e insiders to scam money and power arge...... American democracy, an American capitalism h


common with real capitalism. Both are degenerate… corrupt…and geriatric”. Is there indeed a powerful monied elite which exerts overall control over the


Western political systems by devising schemes under which they get richer without contributing anything apart from monetary manipulation? Are they too focused on making money for the sake of making money? Are so-called democratic governments totally in hock to the bankers/financiers as the whole political and financial system could collapse with disastrous consequences for all (except perhaps the anarchists) should the status quo be seriously interfered with? Is there any answer out there which could change the system and bring some sanity back to it without leading to destruction of the way of life we have all come to expect? There are plenty of questions in this particular discomfort zone, but few answers.


Lawrence Williams 5 as in er


Lawrence Williams Editor


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