“Undermine their pompous authority, reject their moral standards, make anarchy and disorder your trademarks.”
Here in New York City, when Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s private army goes on an arrest binge, the ostensible reasons range from trespassing to carrying books or food into Liberty Square (Zuccotti Park) to making signs to wearing masks to that old standby: disorderly conduct.
In other words, it’s illegal to conduct oneself in a disorderly manner. But who’s discerning disorder from order?
At Liberty Square, it’s those heavily armed men and women wearing blue uniforms. The unarmed folks sharing free food, playing guitars, and setting up think tanks? They allegedly have no say in deciding how order is defined.
Which leaves us with no other choice than to #OccupyDisorder.
Anaïs Nin sez: “In chaos, there is fertility.”
Those of you who know me are most definitely smirking right now as I will—every now and then—exhibit a penchant for precision…and um, yeah, some anal retentiveness, too…and well, over-analysis on rare occasions. But paradoxically, my heart skips a beat when the Situationists bellow: “Trade your boredom for chaos.”
This is because I can recognize that what the 1% calls “order” is indeed threatening all life on the planet and thus requires the 99% to embrace militant noncompliance…pronto.
Jim Morrison sez: “I am interested in anything about revolt, disorder, chaos—especially activity that seems to have no meaning. It seems to me to be the road toward freedom.”
The Lizard King’s “road to freedom” leads, of course, to the future…and the future is counting on us to remain disorderly. Orderly conduct, by the way, is not going to stop the 1% from sabotaging the future. That requires the cultivation of chaos.
A couple of times during my public talks over the years, I’ve presented this bit:
“How many of you think the planet is in peril?” (Just about everyone raises his or her hand)
“How many think those in power—those most responsible for putting the planet in peril—will not relinquish their power voluntarily any time soon?” (Everyone raises hand)
At this point, I deliver the predictable punchline:
“So, if most of us think the planet is in peril but the elites are not going to surrender their power, I have one more question: How much more are we willing to tolerate before we act?”
(If I gave that talk today, I’d replace “elites” with “1%” and “act” with “occupy.”)
Mary Shelley sez: “Invention, it must be humbly admitted, does not consist in creating out of void but out of chaos.”
Okay, I just went back to re-read what I’ve written for this article so far and goddamn, am I tempted to edit it and make it more orderly…but I won’t. Instead, I’ll just remind you that the defenders of order—the now notorious 1%—would love nothing more than to see us embrace their Machiavellian methodology.
But the growth of Occupy Wall Street (OWS) is not based on order. Experimenting with alternate models of human culture is chaotic work, protecting our shared future is an evolving and messy process, and recognizing that the dominant culture is “out of order” is where/how it all begins.
Carl Jung sez: “In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder a secret order.”
I can’t even begin to calculate how many times I’ve heard the Gandhi quote about “becoming the change” bandied about in activist circles throughout my life. I say it’s high time we #occupy an update (or four):
Become the trouble you wish to see in the world…
Become the disorder you wish to see in the world…
Become the revolution you wish to see in the world…
Become the future you wish to see in the world…
We are the 99%. Expect us. Join us…