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Commentary :: Occupy Boston : Organizing : Politics
"The Activism Entry Point: Critiquing The Cancer in Occupy Debate" — by Joseph Anderson, Berkeley, CA
19 Feb 2012
Longtime Berkeley activist Joseph Anderson weighs in on the ongoing debate around Occupy Oakland on the issue of nonviolence vs. the use of Black Bloc style tactics. He weighs in on the recent debate between Chris Hedges and Occupy Oakland organizer Kristof Lopaur.

The Occupy movement, Anderson says, cannot have both a diversity of people and a ”diversity of tactics” at this time – and the movement can’t shortcut the process of attaining, and retaining, the first by jumping to the second.


Well, by now everyone in the Occupy movement is hotly debating “nonviolence” vs. “diversity of tactics”, as recently so in, “Chris Hedges and Kristof Lopaur of Occupy Oakland debate black bloc, militancy and tactics,” February 8, 2012, on KPFA in Berkeley, California.

Both Lopaur and Hedges made some critically weak, flawed, at times somewhat disingenuous or self-contradictory and, in Lopaur’s case, often specious arguments in their radio debate. This so, even though I politically agree with Hedges, and although Hedges’ recent commentary, ”The Cancer in Occupy,” seemed poorly supported journalistically. But, Hedges is dead on about, ‘Go do violence under your own name, not the Occupy movement’s.’

Hedges would have been better off just writing his opinion, presented analytically, but he deserves great credit for using his stature to get an “Anarchist”-suppressed, but mortally important, debate firmly out in the open and over progressive airwaves. Let me say that both of them have respectively done very good progressive work.

This is my partial, but most important, analytical response to Kristof Lopaur’s (and those he represents) support for Black Bloc, or otherwise, ”diversity of tactics” in the Occupy Movement. My main point: Occupy Oakland, and the Occupy movement, cannot have both a diversity of people and a ”diversity of tactics” at this time – and the movement can’t shortcut the process of attaining, and retaining, the first by jumping to the second.


Read more:

(with photos and comments section)


(plain text copy, good for printing)


My great appreciation to Becky O'Malley, publisher of the Berkeley Daily Planet in Berkeley, CA, and San Francisco Bay Area-based journalist Davey D of KPFA, Berkeley, CA, and publisher of

All Together in The Struggle,

Joseph Anderson

Berkeley, CA


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Joseph Anderson bio blurb
19 Feb 2012
Joseph Anderson is a Berkeley, CA, resident; a longtime, progressive, grassroots, political and global justice activist; an occasional political commentary contributor to various publications on issues usually ranging from Black-stereotyping (including by white liberal- & media-coronated Black-on-Black ‘tough-love celebrities’), police brutality, and the Israel lobby and Zionism from a true antiracist, leftist perspective; has occasionally been interviewed on KPFA and elsewhere in the media; has contributed on-the-scene citizen reporting for the prominent progressive San Francisco Bay Area-based journalist, Davey D; and author of, "Same-old-same-old from the corporate media [and police]: the Oakland Justice for Oscar Grant protests".
Chris Hedges is nobody.
20 Feb 2012
Chris Hedges is a liberal loser. Honestly, real leftist should shun Hedges. As for the anarchist relationship with the Occupy Movement, the anarchists are not the problem. The real problem rests in the whining liberals who think cops are part of the 99% and that the ruling class will give up their power if we sit on our asses and whine loudly.