From where I'm sitting (a straight wooden chair in front of my computer) it looks as if some members of the "professional Left" are making some inroads into the Occupy movement, and I hate seeing that. I don't hate it because I'm hoping the professional Right will win out (shudder), but because, armchair supporter of the movement that I am, the fastest way I can think of to kill the movement off, or at the very least to reduce it to irrelevancy, is for it to allow itself to be co-opted by either of the major American political parties. The Republicans, of course, won't make any serious attempt to co-opt the movement. Or at least I'll be truly dumbfounded if they do, and I don't believe they'd stand much of a chance of success if they did try. But the Democrats may be another story entirely.
I won't go into details except to state that I've seen at least one "occupation" including in their tweets the Twitter name of a known shill for President Obama, a man who's currently building what he's trying to bill as a "grass-roots movement" which will (surprise!) ultimately support the President's re-election in 2012. I've also seen other members of the professional Left showing up at occupy movements (including the original in NYC) and, to a degree, being lionized for their supposed "support."
All of which isn't to say I have anything against people of the Left in general, any more than I have anything against people of the Right in general. It's just that I don't have any trust whatsoever in people who've been active and highly visible in U.S. politics during the past several decades. I may be wrong, and I hope I am, but I can't help feeling that said high-visibility people have some kind of agenda of their own whether they're willing to come right out and say so or not; and for me, their inclusion or participation in any of the Occupy movements raises all sorts of red flags because I do believe that if the Occupy movement, taken as a whole, has any real meaning or relevancy, that meaning is that it's composed of ordinary Americans who are convinced that politics in this country is massively corrupt, and who are determined to do something about the corruption, not to make common cause with any of the corrupted or invite them in for a nice cup of tea.
But we'll see, I suppose. I'm enough of an amateur historian to realize that most great movements have made missteps here and there, and there's no reason to think that the present one will be any different in that regard. Although I've been dismayed to have seen some of the things I've seen in the past few days, that doesn't mean I'm ready to write the whole thing off. Yet. I do still believe that the Occupy movement is the best (and probably last) chance the people of this country have of righting the ship of state. I only hope that those who are able to be actively involved will keep their eyes on the ball, that they will remember what it was that brought them out into the streets in the first place.