Just when you thought you’d seen it all. Wowsers:
The Occupy Wall Street movement is at a crossroads.
Since the protesters in Zuccotti Park who made headlines around the world were ousted from their New York City encampment in November, and other demonstrators were sent packing in cities across the country, observers have been left wondering whether the movement is on its deathbed or will transform and grow in the coming year.
With that in mind, POLITICO asked cultural critics, advertising and messaging gurus, activists and others for their ideas about how Occupy can stay relevant.
They quote a number of “relevant gurus” and their suggestions, including 1) a self-proclaimed “60s activist” who is now a Columbia University professor, 2) an admirer of Ron Paul’s ad campaign strategy, and 3) the oh-so “relevant” Rev. Jesse Jackson:
The Rev. Jesse Jackson, a veteran of the civil rights movement, agrees that Occupy must seize the national issues that are poised to shape 2012.
“2012 will be another big year of choice for America’s direction. Will we embrace voter suppression? Will we revolve around poverty or launch a war on poverty? Will we continue to pay for expensive and unnecessary wars? Will we fight for minimum wage?” he asked. “At some point, the spirit and the idea of Occupy must take on concrete, legislative issues.”
And let’s not forget some of the main tools of the left wing activist: Calculated word games and emotionally-charged visual manipulation (bolded emphasis added by me):
David Sauvage, who has produced commercials about Occupy and works closely with the movement, says one of the biggest challenges is simply “communicating our message to the masses of people who don’t know what on earth we’re doing,” and that video can be key to remedying this problem.
He suggests creating educational videos and documentaries to explain who the Occupiers are and to dispel the notion that the movement is violent.
“Our inclination is to point the camera where cops are hitting protesters, but this gets overplayed. Ultimately, you lose people by showing cops hitting protesters – it’s in the human psyche to say, ‘Well, the protesters are encouraging this,’” he told POLITICO.
The messages in the videos must be fine-tuned so they are understandable and not offensive to the average person, he added.
As an example of how to use video to message effectively, Sauvage said, “‘I want economic justice,’ is a powerful message, but ‘I want money to be distributed more equally’ is not only not powerful, worse, it falls into a socialist paradigm.”
Even though the article blatantly stands as a pro-OWS endorsement of sorts by the so-called “unbiased” Politico news outfit, I’d nevertheless like to thank them for providing valuable insight into the tactics of advocates of the Occupy movement. Yes, we’ve seen these tactics play out over the last few months, but rarely do we get such candid, up-front admissions when it comes to both their political and media-messaging strategies.
The question remains: Will Democrat politicos continue to embrace Occupy? I really, really hope so.