This is a response to “Occupy the NYTimes”, an article written by one Josh Mitteldorf.
Response by Simin Royanian:
Unfortunately there is nothing new or interesting in Mitteldorf’s piece. It is the same hodgepodge that the “occupy” people talk about.
Not one word about class or imperialism, talking as if history began on 9/11. Saying Americans are not stupid, and that everybody is just “brainwashed”.
As if the American ruling class has not lied and then been exposed so many times. He does not even talk about lies during the Vietnam war, let alone going back in history to the beginning of this nation.
Also, his position is the same “liberal” propaganda. He claims he looks for “truth”, but he gives the examples of what the Americans should emulate as Prague and Tienanmen square, both anti-socialist protests.
The Prague was an anti-communist movement for “decentralization” of the economy to overthrow communism and move towards a “western style” capitalist government.
It is interesting that this Prague protest happened in 1968 when the American student movement led by Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) protested all over the US against the US anti-communist war in Vietnam, and specifically in New York city, Columbia students took over the University (that was a real “occupy”) with specific demands that forced the university administration to negotiation with the students. So Mitteldorf does not suggest that Americans follow their own glorious history of resistance, but rather to follow US government support for anti-socialist “protests” in socialist countries. He does not refer to the civil rights movement and the sit-ins by African Americans and their white supporters against Jim Crow laws and so on. There are so many examples of glorious American labor struggles with specific demands and strategy, even the suffragist movement, and he claims he knows the truth or something (I wonder if he has studied the history of the American people’s struggles at all).
The New York Times reported the Prague protests with the usual anticommunist, anti-Soviet propaganda while not being so kind to the students all across the US who were protesting racism in the US and the Vietnam war….
The Tienanmen protests were even more meaningless. They happened at the beginning of the transformation of China from socialism to capitalism. While the capitalist supporters had won the struggle within the Chinese communist party and were planning the transition to capitalism, another pro-capitalist and pro-US faction was rising in their struggle to become the new capitalist bosses. There were no people-oriented, progressive goals or organizations in the Tienanmen protests.
These examples, which were anti-socialist, pro-capitalist actions can not be examples for the American resistance. The United States is already a capitalist country, so the only examples that American people have to follow are their own successful labor, civil-rights, and women’s-rights movements, which have been successful in curbing the excesses of unchecked capitalism, movements with clear and disciplined organizations, strategy and goals, patience and long term commitment to hard struggle.
So, while the American media have become more corporate-owned since the 1960’s, they have always been representing the ruling class, supporting anti-socialist propaganda.
This person, instead of saying the people cannot trust corporate owned media, should read between the lines, learn to distinguish facts from opinion, and suggest they read news and history from the anticapitalist view as well, and maybe at least read Howard Zinn’s People’s History. He claims only that if NYT would wake up and tell the “truth” somehow, everything will be fine.
There is so much partial truth and so many facts about the atrocities of US imperialism every day in the NYT itself if the reader is not lazy and reads through long articles and learns to distinguish between mere data and propaganda. NY Times tells you about the crimes against prisoners in the US, the war crimes in Iraq and Afghanistan, rape in the military, torture in Abu Ghraib prison…. they even published the Julian Assange and Manning stuff….
This guy is another confused and anticommunist American ‘liberal”.