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Sat, Mar. 1st, 2008, 09:35 am
You know what I can't get enough of

PUPPETS AS A PROTEST TOOL

Has someone just found a perfect joke to play on the resistance movements by convincing them these are useful? I mean, colorful and fun, the black clad anarchists certainly need a dose of that, but, do they really buy this crap?

Placation. Big business and big government are so frightened by puppets, I'm sure. I mean, Punch and Judy, right? It's gonna scare the horses! Guns can't hurt them! Community!

LOL.

That's another joke. Community...meanwhile they alienate the regular joe instead of trying to win them over. I really hope Obama's campaign continues to grow—it's the first effort with horse sense to come along, as far as I can tell.

I just hope he's not a trojan.

Sat, Mar. 1st, 2008 11:03 pm (UTC)
ogo235

"colorful and fun." in my opinion, this is exactly what it's about. who said radical action/activism has to be droll and boring all the time. does all "political" action have to be serious to be "useful"? i love this kind of shit personally..

do you really think puppets alienate the "regular joe"? i think that "fun" actions like these actually encourage involvement. (if you are speaking to the greater alienation of protest-tactics at large, i can understand that point..)

fuck 'em if they can't take a joke.

Sat, Mar. 1st, 2008 11:19 pm (UTC)
holyloki

I just think it makes them look stupid. It doesn't make any critical point, and makes it look like these people aren't really upset or serious, but rather out to cause trouble and have a good time. It just adds to the alienation of protest tactics at large by increasing the feeling that the concerns aren't legitimate.

Woo.

Wed, Mar. 5th, 2008 12:20 am (UTC)
canneryrow: some puppet users

amy goodman did a show on puppet work at protests. dig it here:

http://www.democracynow.org/2001/5/11/art_and_revolution_puppets_and_protest


I think you both have made really good points. There are specific audiences for puppet works, and protests in general--it's not everyone.
The tools reflect the audience's needs as well as the creators'.

I was reading yesterday about the tools used to get a major piece of consumer protection legislation passed in California like last year. All these teen prom queens, and Miss Teen USA, and the Screen Actor's guild, had to personally plead with Gov. Schwarzenegger to remember how much make up he wears, and all his actor friends wear, and how this legislation would help protect them from things like leukemia and alzheimers.

The pleas were incredibly narrow, but they worked, because that's what people like Schwarzenegger want to see. Give him a dignified plea on behalf of the greater good of Californians....pffft. Not relevant to him.

Wed, Mar. 5th, 2008 11:36 am (UTC)
holyloki: Re: some puppet users

So, protests...who is the audience in your mind?

Just the people who are there? That seems really self serving to me, and totally ineffective.

Wed, Mar. 5th, 2008 10:50 am (UTC)
wretched_threat

Depends on the context... 8 years ago, at the RNC in Philadelphia, Federal, state and local police purposefully confiscated all of our puppets in order to make it easier to paint all of the remaining protesters as violent radicals

As far as Obama goes... good foreign policy tactics, no change on strategy though... he'll probably end up a cross between Clinton and Reagan given what he's going to have on the table.

Wed, Mar. 5th, 2008 11:34 am (UTC)
holyloki

From the radio show my friend canneryrow posted, it sounds like the puppet wielders are more likely to stage violent protests. It sounds like they are the ones far left enough to a) buy puppets as a viable strategy for changing the minds of the opposition "Puppets can say what men cannot." (You're as big a nerd as I am if you can name the reference) and/or b) feel desperate enough to use violence as a tactic (since obviously the puppets aren't doing much for them besides preaching to the choir).

Puppeteering is really self-serving, methinks.

Also, something I considered in the course of this thread:

Puppets, really BIG puppets...wouldn't they be a really easy place to stash weapons?

I can see why police forces would be hesitant to allow much more than a human being to stand up against them in an already confrontational situation. Granted, they shouldn't be doing anything to inhibit free speech, but, I guess I can see the puppets from their point of view. I can also see why they wouldn't bring up the concept of weaponry inside puppets as a main reason for banning them...the same reason I hesitated at the thought of sending as many copies of 1984 to the White House as I could find...don't give 'em any ideas.

Wed, Mar. 5th, 2008 07:32 pm (UTC)
wretched_threat

I don't think anyone thinks they are a viable tactic for changing people's minds (puppets as a strategy would truly be insane). They're mostly used as a method of nominalizing the overall crowd in situations where a large contingent of the crowd is fairly radical.

Self-serving? well... showing up to large demonstrations when they do not confront any of the individuals who have the power to effect substantive change directly is self-serving (i.e. Anti-war protests outside of Washington/military bases/industrial supply centers). Media doesn't care... if it's not anything which might directly or indirectly affect big finance, they don't have much of a budget to cover it (this is due largely to big media conglomerates purchasing many of the country's newspapers on top of National cable news and then cutting the news budget to increase profits). You're unlikely to change people's minds in an increasingly polarized society anyway (either, they already generally agree with you and are ignorant of an issue, or they disagree with you and are likely to feel as though this disagreement has roots in their core value systems unless the topic is presented in a cautious manner)... so, open acts of political demonstration in the US are, by their very nature, self-serving.

Shouldn't be doing anything to inhibit free speech? You've never been to Philadelphia, have you? That same week, they also detained a truck full of exotic animals that was headed to a pet store for fear that the animals might end up in the wrong hands... it got pretty surreal

Wed, Mar. 5th, 2008 07:57 pm (UTC)
holyloki

shouldn't

what did they expect might happen with the animals?

Thu, Mar. 6th, 2008 07:48 pm (UTC)
wretched_threat

I think they thought the animals were being shipped into town by the protesters so that they could be set free inside the First Union Center... Which, is assuming that anybody could sneak into the FU Center in the first place (mind you... this was 2000... there were 2,500 protesters in town and nobody thought Bush could get into office... we were angry that the guy was running... but we weren't going to go that far)

Thu, Mar. 6th, 2008 01:32 am (UTC)
holyloki

And, ironically enough, you're the one holding a gun in your user icon. : O

Thu, Mar. 6th, 2008 07:45 pm (UTC)
wretched_threat

It wasn't loaded... and they shouldn't be doing anything to inhibit my right to bear arms either