Are you willing to look in the mirror?

Categories: Announcements, Discussion, Open Mic, Reflections

I know that most of the people who begin to read this will not have the balls to finish it because they fear their own reality and the actual truth. I am going to post a video link here that I have knowingly spammed to numerous comments here in hopes that some of you are actually willing to take a good long look in the mirror. You see, you all complain about things you think are wrong and your choice is to protest. The problem is however most of you are protesting in ways that rob people of their rights. You make it hard for a hard working american to go to his bank to withdraw money or cash his pay check. You make it hard for people to get to work, you want to close the port thus costing hard working americans money, occupy grand lake theatre is an attempt to stop a mom or g=dad from taking their kids or family to the movies. You see the average blue collar worker is in danger of losing money because you and others have decided to deprive American Citizens of their right to work and their right to carry out their day to day lives because you think you are getting screwed. Watch this video  and I challenge you to occupy a cabin in the woods not a tent in the streets where you can steal or buy food. Then tell us how bad it really is for you in this great nation. If you are still not convinced there are plenty of countries you can live in where your actions are welcome. This is the United States of America where this country was founded on hard work and success and not handouts to those unwilling to work or those willing to take criminal action in protest. The thing that sticks the most with me is that 90% of you pay no taxes and yet think others should pay more. How about getting a job first, paying your taxes and then having a legitimate gripe. Seems to me like you cot the whole gig wrong and want something you are unwilling to work for yourselves. Honestly who here will take this challenge? My guess is none because none of you are sincere. Nobody owes you crap if you arent willing to get up off your butts and make your way in this world. The highlight of the Occupy Oakland Movement, molotoving people hired to protect the law-abiding citizens of this city and of course rape and murder….I hope you have all found something to be proud of while destroying public and private property. You all make me sick, I was born and bred in Oakland Ca and you people have been a disgrace to this proud city. Take the challenge then come back and tell me what real life is truly about. Otherwise pack the hell up and go find a life.


9 Responses to “Are you willing to look in the mirror?”

  1. David Heatherly

    I love your response, awesome and classy. I’m so excited because usually when somebody on a politics site posts some really angry stuff like the original poster put up, the conversation degenerates really quickly and it’s just a shouting match… the 1% sits back and laughs of course. But we’re not falling into that trap, not too much. The amazing thing about Occupy to me, maybe the best thing so far, is that it’s restored my faith that Americans can get together and disagree but still look each other in the eye and have respect for each other. It’s not just “I disagree with you, so you are an idiot.” I mean on those terms, we are never going to unite. I love this messy process of consensus too, and I think our best days are still to come, as a movement and as a nation.

  2. David Heatherly

    Hey awesome points and questions calaverasgrandes; I hope he/she doe stop back, but did that person seem to be interested in consensus to you? But I think we have to really just hope that everybody is open minded so I salute you.

    7.7 trillion is a shit sandwich, most Americans have not even heard that news yet. It’s over for the 1%. They put us on the brink of death as a nation. Either we allow them to keep doing it until they succeed, or we stop them now.

    Thanks for making the point for me about the Grand Lake, too. I try to listen to everybody’s points about any inconvenience that has been caused for people in the 99% just trying to go about their daily lives and jobs, and I also am a worker (“temp” assignment that lasts 2 years… how’s that for 21st Century America?), so I’m sympathetic to that, but come on…. Occupy the Grand Lake? The owner is helping us out. The idea that people are being prevented from taking their families to the cruddy holiday movies that are playing at every other corporate theater in the Bay Area that Tuesday night…. I mean it’s laughable, the OP is really stretching for indignation, and then completely falls apart at the end in a hissy fit. I don’t even feel like it’s worth my responding to since you already did it justice, cheers.

  3. Dan Sing

    Didn’t Obama (and Clinton before him) run on the “Change” platform?

  4. AaronM

    Love it or leave it. People say this alot.

    But there’s a third option: Change it so that it’s a place worth loving.

  5. calaverasgrandes

    Hi Basharr,
    I will try an answer your question respectfully, but first off a heartfelt fuck you. I am born and raised in this country. I have lived in Oakland for 21 years. I grew up in the deep south where simply associating with people of color was enough to get roughed up by the cops. To simply move to the “plenty of countries you can live in where your actions are welcome” is to give up on this one. And make no mistake this country is the center of a global empire. It has not always been that way. That was certainly not the vision of this nations founders.
    This nation was founded on dissent and insurrection. So do not try and sell us the lie that protest or dissent is “un-american”.
    Now lets get one to your “facts”.
    The Grand Lake is inviting us to “Occupy” their theater. The owner is a supporter. Occupy the Grand Lake is a benefit. If you are “born and bred in Oakland Ca” resident you can’t possibly be ignorant of Allen Michaan’s political activism with this theater. Were you around for the beginning of the Gulf War?
    As faras closing the ports, that is about hardworking blue collar American’s that are suffering from union busting tactics. Judging from your overall tone I would not be surprised if you have issues with unions as well. However, it is an American right to organize and collectively bargain with the companies at which they work.
    Speaking of work, I work 50 hours a week, sometimes more. I pay taxes. I am not asking for a handout.
    How about the government stop trying to abridge our constitutional rights?
    Why not the government stop taxing us merely so they can make the banks richer? Do you even know how much of the income tax you pay goes to simply servicing the interest on the national debt?
    How did you feel when you found out the bank bailout was not 700 billion, but 7.7 trillion?
    I doubt you will stop back in here to read this but there you go.

  6. Tlahtolli


    Even if you pay no Federal taxes, you still end up paying California taxes. But here’s why some people don’t pay Federal taxes. (Hint: It’s not because they don’t want to).

    From Slate

    “Rhetorical fervor aside, the 53 Percent campaign does raise an interesting question: What is going on with that other 47 percent? Why are so few people paying income taxes? For the answer to that question, we turn to the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center, which released a study on the subject this July. (The TPC also put out the initial report with the 53 percent number.)

    The short answer is: deductions and poverty. About half of households within that 47 percent do not end up paying federal income tax because they qualify for enough breaks to cancel their tax obligations out. Of that group, 44 percent are claiming tax benefits for the elderly, like an exemption for Social Security payments. And 30.4 percent are claiming credits for “children and the working poor,” like the child-care tax credit. The remainder get breaks for investment income, spending on education, itemized deductions, and a mish-mash of other things. When combined, it’s all enough to cancel out their income tax requirements.

    In short, it is not that they are not paying their taxes. It is that the country’s tax structure lets them off the hook. Indeed, you can draw a straight line between the Bush tax cuts and the growing number of households exempted from income tax. For instance, the 2001 cuts, extended under the Obama administration, doubled the child tax credit from $500 to $1,000 and expanded eligibility for the Earned Income Tax Credit among married taxpayers. Additionally, the Bush tax cuts lowered income taxes in every bracket, making it easier for a household’s liability to get fully offset by deductions and credits. And on top of all that, the stimulus bill introduced a host of further tax cuts.

    That covers about half of the households that don’t pay any federal income taxes. The other half of households are just too poor to pay them. The Tax Policy Center provides a handy example: A couple with two children earning less than $26,400 per year pays no income tax if it takes standard deductions and common exemptions, for instance. “The basic structure of the income tax simply exempts subsistence levels of income from tax,” TPC’s Roberton Williams writes.”

  7. Sistah Sarah

    I like your avatar better than your video, which is right about some, and only some, of the problems and even fewer of the solutions. Your presentation is asinine, however. You assume more than you know.

    Being a QPOC and a Marxist Muslim has taught me the value of having friends. When will you dicover that value, basharr? Look in the mirror … what do you see?

  8. john seal

    Sorry, I’m too busy bathing, working (did I mention I’ve never been unemployed in my life) and paying taxes to throw any imaginary Molotov cocktails.

    And you may want to consider taking your movie-going business to a chain. The Grand Lake is an Occupy ally and supporter.

  9. Iriswaters

    Sorry hon, most occupy folk actually -have- jobs. Not all the folk who actually do the overnight for us, but the majority of us involved are employed. As for your get a job bs, perhaps you mixed the 17% real unemployment/marginal employment rate? That’s 26% for folk under 30. And much higher for people of color. And specifically higher in oakland.

    Sure, we are causing you some inconvenience. But we are also doing something very, very important here. Every now and again, everyday business needs disrupting in the name of something more pressing. I’m sure that the founding of this country that you refer to so blithely presented some inconvenience too.

    As for the comment about “if you don’t like it go somewhere else”, my answer is not just no, but hell no. I’m sorry, hon, but that’s not how this thing works. See, this is my country too. And all the supposed freedoms this country is supposed to have in somehow greater proportions than elsewhere sort of speak to my ability, even my -responsibility- to do everything I can to work to fix what’s broken here.

    And believe me, that’s a lot. Between 2 parties in power that are functionally identical, and hugely bought out by monied interests, and the greatest wealth inequality the nation has seen in a century, a collapsing economy that watches the very people who caused the collapse gaining ever greater shares of the total wealth of the nation, the highest sustained unemployment since the great depression, huge federal giveaways to corporations that actually do nothing for the liquidity crisis or the fact that demand(the only real driver of job creation) is still dropping…

    Oh, and corporate media manipulating the conversation left and right to further the ends of their owners and advertisers…

    This situation is untenable. We need ways to talk about this outside of corporate media and duopoly controlled political structures.

    And the awesome thing? Occupy is -working-. Already, the concept of income/wealth inequality has blown up across the american consciousness. People are leaving corporate banks for credit unions in the millions. People are talking more and more about the issues of corporate personhood, unaccountability, the revolving door. And thinking about alternatives.

    Occupy isn’t the final solution by any stretch of the imagination. It’s merely a first step. A baby step at that. A first opening dialog in a very long conversation. But there’s something new in the air, and it feels a lot like real democracy.

    And it’s fucking beautiful, man. You should check it out.

    It’s messy as hell. It’s dysfunctional. We have no clue what we’re doing when it comes to actually listening to one another. When it comes to real equality in discourse. We have no frame of reference, since our cultural history is thousands of years of oligarchy. Rule of the elites.

    But we’re working it out. Slowly. Painfully. In little halting baby steps, and in a 3 steps forward, 2 steps back kinda way. But we’re progressing. And inspiring more and more people every day.