Dealing with FOX News with awesomesauce and attitude
Via GOOD, the New York Observer had an awesome exclusive. A producer for Greta Van Sustern's show on FOX News was down at Occupy Wall St., trying to get some rambling stoners on tape to embarrass the protesters, and instead ended up interviewing Jesse LaGreca. LaGreca proceeded to dress down FOX news for being a propaganda outlet instead of a news organization, and then basically wiped the pavement with this guy. At the end, trying to salvage the segment, the producer concedes the point about FOX, but then asks what role Obama plays in all this.
The obvious objective here is to get a protester putting all the blame on Obama, so that can be aired on FOX, but LaGreca wisely doesn't take the bait and instead uses the question to call out the question for being disingenuous by noting that the conservative opposition to Obama is trying to stop him from doing any good in the world. I just wanted to stand up and applaud at that part. The left is getting to a point of Obama-obsession that rivals the right. It's not just the leftists who have convinced themselves the man can't do anything right, though they are a problem. Even the most stalwart Obama supporters have made the situation All About Obama, when in fact there's a much larger problem at hand than the fact that our President is oft-times a weenie. I have many of the same criticisms of Occupy Wall St. as others—while the hippie thing is overblown, I really do wish that there wasn't so much hostility to fellow travelers who look "straight"—but I'm a strong supporter of it for one reason above all other things. It's focusing people's attention where it belongs, on the banks and widespread social inequities. This is a problem that's expanded beyond just the electoral cycles and goes straight back to a larger trend towards the right in this country, a trend that's pushing Republicans to the far right and Democrats to the center. Focusing like a laser on Obama and making this about whether or not he's "betrayed" us fails to shed any real light on the problem. For good reason, i.e. Americans continue to elect Republicans in large numbers, both parties believe that Americans like the status quo of increasing inequities and corporate control of everything, and so neither party has a reason to change their approach.
Occupy Wall St. is blaming the right people, and pointing out the real problems in our society. It's a start. And LeGreca models the best way to keep our eyes on the prize, by making it about addressing underlying values and systems and not seeing a single politician as the force that will save us all, and then plunging into despair when he makes the rather inevitable compromised decisions that come with the territory of being a politician.