WHAT'S ESPECIALLY UNIQUE ABOUT OCCUPY? The identity of the movement that sprang up was a brilliant exercise in social innovation. It deserves an entrepreneurship award. It created an institution — the encampment — where people of the countercultural inclination, from anarchists to people with a deep longing for an assembly community, can feel at home. There was this brilliant blend of the two styles, which was always somewhat delicate, but it did succeed for a couple of months.
I HAVE TO ASK THE BIG, ANNOYING QUESTION — WHAT'S NEXT? The old model does not look sustainable anymore — that's not a value judgment, it's just my appraisal. The police won't permit it, the media have moved on, and the presidential campaign makes it all the more difficult. Presenting the old character again is not thrilling. It's not marketable. It just doesn't have the momentum that it did before. So if there is to be a continuation, it's going to have to look different. And in some ways it is — some people want to continue with demonstrations against forecloses, some people want to campaign for constitutional amendments, some people are trying to organize a functional financial institution. . . . Personally, I have a rough hypothesis. If Obama wins, then I think what's been demonstrated is that his move toward the equality agenda and away from the bipartisanship farce opens a door for something inspired by Occupy. Some people call it the "99 percent movement," but whatever you want to call it, it might be possible for those networks to mobilize and actually produce some results.
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