Sunday, October 23, 2011

St. Paul's Protesters May Be Ordered, Then Forced, to Leave

Thinking Anglicans reports that the cathedral chapter and the City corporation are seriously considering getting a court order to clear the protesters from the grounds and from Paternoster Square in front. That would be the first step in a forcible eviction.

Activists face intense pressure to reconsider the St Paul's camp, not least for the resonance of being seen as responsible for the closure of a national landmark for the first time since the second world war. Church officials say the closure is costing St Paul's about £20,000 a day in lost revenue.
(from The Guardian)

So that's what it all boils down to, money, the god we all REALLY believe in despite what we say we believe in.

When I think of the prospect of police armed with clubs and teargas attacking unarmed protesters outside a house of God, what comes to my mind is a Yiddish word, shanda.


Wormwood's Doxy said...

If they do this, I don't ever want to hear another bleat from the Church of England about the decline of Christianity in Great Britain. They will have murdered what's left of it in plain sight of a world that is dying for the Good News.

And maybe it deserves to die. If all Christianity is good for is preserving beautiful old buildings--and serving as yet another enforcement arm of the Powers and Principalities--Jesus lived and died for nothing, and we should just give the poor man a decent, and final, burial and have done with it.

Burl said...

The Yddish word that comes to my mind (in addition to shanda) is facatah (or any variable of the spelling - it's fluid).

The C of E is simply being true to form.


Tristan Alexander said...

Gee, I thought the so called "good Christians" would back the OWS demonstrations! Seems I have seen little to no support for it from them and this of course shows a support for those who rule, those 1% who have all the money!

Counterlight said...

I think the people contemplating expelling the protesters have more in common with the Sanhedrin and Caiaphas than with Christ.

...or maybe with the Grand Inquisitor ... ever read Dostoyevksy?

Counterlight said...

I hear Tristan chortling with smug satisfaction on one end, and here's a sample of the shit I'm getting from the opposite end, from the comment thread on Thinking Anglicans.



Thanks for the link to the dispersal of a demonstration in Melbourne. It left me unmoved. Why? Many years ago, in the fervour of youthful idealism, I supported CND and participated in many London demonstrations. When we were arrested we were picked up bodily by the police and tossed into black marias. This gave us an immense sense of vindication and no resentment of the police. In order to make things more inconvenient we always asked for time to pay our ten shilling (50p) fines. This gave us inconvenience because we had to go regularly to Bow Street to pay one shilling (5p) for ten weeks. But how self-righteous we felt.

"I recall those distant event because at the time I was acting from conscience in opposition to the nuclear deterrant. In the end CND achieved nothing but publicity. In recent years it has been disclosed that both CND and the Committee of 100 were being manipulated by Russia, a disillusioning disclosure for many of us. Since then I have lost patience with demonstrations. They achieve nothing but a sense of self-satisfaction for the demonstrators.

"I hope that eventually the police will be brought in to clear these people from the precincts of St Paul's. Be assured, many will live up to the occasion by over-acting for the benefit of the cameras. Many of them are professional demonstrators and travel the world to participate in similar events.

"One further recollection. Why did the police start using riot shields when controlling demonstrations. At the Grosvenor Square protests those of us at the front of the crowd thoughtfully came provided with needles. The police provided a cordon to prevent us from getting close to the American Embassy. These we used to stick into the bodies of the police who were forced to retreat in reaction to pain. So much for passive protest. How many today would have the wits to think up such a ruse?

"I retrospect we were as boring then as these anti-capitalist protestors are now and shared the delusional ideals of left-wing cant without considering the consequences. Personally, I would be inclined to drag them by the hair, especially the middle-class ones. This would give them a genuine experience of what the 'underclass' have to endure as a result of their frolics and a strong sense of solidarity. Judging from comments on the radio many of the demonstrators are self-righteous, disaffected, middle-clas bores with time on their hands. I am particulalry amused by the male spokesman whose pulic school accent is masked by the self-conscious reluctance to pronounce consonants, as in 'de'eriotion' for instance. Affectation has many faces."
Posted by: John Bowles on Sunday, 23 October 2011 at 10:50am BST

Counterlight said...

Tristan and John Bowles can both enjoy a little satisfaction at my expense.

God bless 'em both.

Wormwood's Doxy said...

I saw that comment, Counterlight. What an ass-hat.

Since then I have lost patience with demonstrations. They achieve nothing but a sense of self-satisfaction for the demonstrators.

Yeah. Those people in Selma didn't accomplish anything. Neither did the folks who showed up on the Mall in Washington in 1963. And forget those self-righteous folks from ACT UP, who actually managed to get the Federal government to move off the dime and get experimental HIV drugs to people who were dying. That was all an illusion....

As for Tristan's comment, what did he say that isn't deserved? Sigh.

June Butler said...

This is so awful. A disaster, really. And what happened to Giles Fraser? After his initial welcoming words to the protestors, he now says they must go due to unnamed health and safety concerns.

Brian R said...

I am sorry but while I originally (and still) agree with the aims of the protests, I can now see nothing further to be achieved. They have set up camp in our main city square called the Octagon and it looks awful just as the tourist ship season is starting. It was a green meeting place for our citizens but has now been alienated. I do not want to go too close but, from what I read in Sydney and Melbourne, the camps are very unhygienic. We have national elections in 6 weeks and riding high in popularity is the present Prime Minister who before he entered politics worked for 'Merrill Lynch as head of Asian foreign exchange in Singapore. That same year he was promoted to Merrill's global head of foreign exchange, based in London, where he may have earned around US$2.25 million a year including bonuses'. This camp is not going to hinder his re-election but will make him even more popular as ordinary people are unable to use their city square. My sympathies are with the Dean of St Paul's. These occupations are not affecting the fat cats.

Wormwood's Doxy said...

Brian--just how do you propose to get their attention?

Over here, our representatives are pretty much bought and paid for by those fat cats. I think it's very important for them to see thousands of pissed-off people milling about. The implicit threat of revolution may be the last power we've got left. It's making them so nervous here that they are unleashing the cops on people who haven't done anything wrong--while muzzling coverage of the protests and/or making fun of the protestors in every possible media outlet.

I'll trade my "city square" for what's happening in the PUBLIC SQUARE right now, any day. Democracy is messy--and if a pleasant park is more important to people than standing against corruption and rampant inequality, well....I guess I know why we got into this mess to begin with.

June Butler said...

Brian, what else is there to do for people who have no voice but to show themseves?

As the OccupyWallStreet folks said:

But the "one demand" that matters most is directed at our society, not our policymakers, and it's much more fundamental than these excellent ideas. The demand is this: "Come back to sanity." That's the underlying demand that unifies all those items on the #OccupyWallSt website. Our culture is insane today, and they recognize that. Create a transactions tax, and they'll simply rob us another way - until we restore our society to sanity.

We are insane. Someone has to say it in a way that can be heard. What better than a peaceful disturbance in the public square or the churchyard or in the area of another powerful institution?

JCF said...

That post by "John Bowles" is a Poe's Law candidate, fer shur...


Counterlight said...

I paid my 3rd visit yesterday to the protesters down at Liberty Plaza. The place looks a mess, but is as well-maintained as any encampment can possibly be. There are arrangements for sanitation down there, including for protesters to use shower and bath facilities provided by volunteers in the area and in Brooklyn. In my 3 visits, I saw no drug or alcohol use, not even the occasional dooby. The protesters are keenly aware that they are being watched as much as they are watching.

Not all of them are kids. We have union members (including hardhats from the WTC construction site next door), and sometimes clergy of all kinds, visit them and spend the night in the park with them.

Counterlight said...

Apparently the city and the occupation worked out some kind of arrangement for garbage pickup as well. The banks of chrysanthemums in the park are in full bloom, and remain untouched and undamaged.

Tristan Alexander said...

No chorteling from me, I find it all sad and wish those who are protesting the best of luck and I support them fully. The comments from "thinking Anglican" make me sick! They sem to think the way things are is how it should be otr can't be changed!

"...what else is there to do for people who have no voice but to show themseves?" I fully agree and point out that your Jesus was one voice against the system working outside that system. While I find his followers evil in the main, his message was not! I guess if the OWS people manage to cause change and then it becomes like what it was against, it will be just like those who follow Jesus. But for now I have hope for better than that!

Counterlight said...

"I fully agree and point out that your Jesus was one voice against the system working outside that system. While I find his followers evil in the main, his message was not!"

I agree.

MarkBrunson said...

Unfortunately, the system - the big E evil - has a tendency to assimilate what it can't outright destroy. The second the priests and bishops went on Constantine's payroll - hell, the second Paul started getting money sent to Jerusalem! - the rot set in.