In an interview with longtime anti-war activist Tom Hayden, Keith Olbermann asked Hayden whether or not the “Occupy Michele Bachmann” episode wasn’t turning the movement into a farce and diluting its message.
Olbermann: One other thing about this event on board the ship — the Occupy Michele Bachmann moment. I mean it’s a certain element of farce to it. But political interruption, non violent, brief, in and out, take whatever’s coming to you at the end of it. Is that a useful tactic? Or are they risking diluting the message or is that something new — are we seeing something morph again?
Hayden: I think it’s a bit out of control. Remember this is not directed by anybody. And I’ve done such things in my own past. I hate to judge but I would say when a movement gets this stage of excitement going it can start to overstep what its public support is. The public’s support is not for shutting down Michele Bachmann. It’s for substantially reforming Wall Street, doing something about derivatives, campaign contributions. And yeah, I would say anything that dilutes from that message becomes a sideshow.
Sorry to tell you, Tom, but the message, whatever it was, has become diluted. The Occupy movement has become a sideshow and not just because they branched off in this instance to shout down Michele Bachmann.
At first the media were enthralled with the occupiers, seeing them as the anti-Tea Party. But now many in the media are becoming annoyed with the movement as reports of crime in the various cities surface, and violence, like what happened in Oakland, does serious damage to personal property and endangers public safety.
Cities that are being run by liberal mayors have only encouraged the movement by allowing them to set up encampments on public property and to run their own tent cities. In Denver, across the street from where the protesters have set up at the park, several of them were arrested for not removing their belongings from the sidewalk, as required by a city ordinance.
I was in Denver this past weekend and witnessed for myself that rather than erect a tent city, like in Los Angeles and New York, they lined the city sidewalk with their possessions.
While I was in Los Angeles the previous weekend, I filmed a protester admitting that he was a communist and advocating getting rid of America and everything it stands for.
The message of the Occupy movement was supposed to be about Wall Street and derivatives, as Hayden mentioned, but in Denver and Los Angeles it was more about socialism, destroying capitalism and other radical ideas that Hayden would be familiar with, having been a prominent Vietnam War protester in the 1960s and ’70s.
As each day passes and the movement drifts further and further away from it’s original purpose, it moves a day closer to its eventual demise.