Thank you for the response, but your opening paragraph precisely made my point about tribalism. Indeed, that is the very definition of tribalism. I have always acted independently, my supreme bias being a morality that defends human dignity and individual freedom, a freedom again measured by the standard of human dignity. Maybe I’m on a different track, but I have never been a follower. It has gotten me into scrapes with some of the largest corporations on the planet(against which I always prevailed), and I always go to sleep with a clear conscience. Furthermore, I am always consistent in my positions, and never have to face the possibility of flip-flopping on issues.
As for the protests, they have resisted a leader which could co-opt their message-and there is one even if some refuse to hear it- and spin it into watered down or subverted politics. The incidence you’ve referred to are FOX-news generated, hyped or distorted. I can speak for the Chicago group, which I visit each day, especially since they are near my office. There is a culture of respect and dignity and honesty the likes of which I have never seen, and I have been a part of many protests, from pro-democracy in China rallies to anti-war and pro-Union rallies at the Madison Wisconsin statehouse.
For those incidence that have occurred, as in the sexual assault in New York, the police bear a significant responsibility, as they were rounding up homeless people and others and depositing them among the protesters as a tactic to disrupt constitutionally rights. Taken in total, the very small number of actual incidence is still far, far lower than the society at large. Drug use and alcohol use is discouraged, but there are not security gangs patrolling the protests. It is an honor system, largely, and people are people, and the movement has attracted a broad menu of people. At a general assembly meeting last night in Chicago I met with an attorney, 2 DePaul graduate students, a grandmother and a Teamster, working three jobs but coming each Sunday to serve soup as his contribution.
The best advice I can offer is, stop accepting the fear and siege mentality of the corporate media, which plays to niche markets and base impulses as the vehicle to sell their crap. Too many people buy the marketing tactic that the world is spiraling out of control. Maybe look a bit closer at people whose energies are spent in the defense of individual human liberty-above even capitalism and who are engaged in making it a better place for people first. Truly, wouldn’t it stand to reason that if the world values people first, business would likewise benefit. Instead, the corporate controlled media would have us believe that business is a giant benevolent and monolithic cow whose teat we all endeavor to suck from.
And one last note. While Communism was a failed economic system which essentially devoured itself, which is what capitalism is doing right now, crime was, comparatively to American crime, almost non-existent. Having spent much time in Eastern and southern Europe just after the Berlin Wall came down, those societies were quite safe. Indeed, the so-called worst parts of cities like Bratislava, Budapest and Belgrade where far safer than the best parts of Chicago, New York and Dallas.
Finally, it is interesting the use of Berkley as a pejorative. The penchant for tribalism also promotes antipathy for intellectualism and knowledge, evidenced by the constant assault against education, attacks on professors, teachers unions and public schools by way of vouchers, the home-schooling fad and the promotion of creationism in curricula. The result is creating a dangerous malleable and disastrously gullible populace. That will work for the purveyors of fear and paranoia and hate and selfishness for a time, but is unstable and unsustainable in a society, and whose eventual collapse or backlash is potentially fatal to this also potentially great country we’d all like to see prevail.