I was distressed to learn today of Mayor Bloomberg's ugly and under-handed quasi-military police action in Zuccotti Park last night. It is exactly the sort of arrogant, sneaky, bad-faith, and self-pleasing venture, complete with police violence and concerted efforts to muzzle live press coverage, that one would expect of such colleagues of his in the media and government businesses as fellow oligarch Silvio Berlusconi. I am hoping that mayoral recall petitions (if there is such a procedure in NYC) will start to circulate.
That said, while I was disappointed by the ruling just issued by the New York State Supreme Court to the effect that, while OWS people must be allowed back into the park, they cannot reestablish a permanent encampment with tents and such, I did feel upon reading the ruling that it appears legally reasonable.
The OWS people need to be very smart now about how best to keep public attention focused on the issues of wealth distribution, rigged crony capitalism, and government policymakers' indifference to the interests of the "99 percent" that I gather motivate them - and how to retain broader public sympathy for themselves and their issues when the other side is just looking for excuses to demonize them - in a tough situation and when they no doubt are upset. Played correctly, it could end up having given them the perfect exit strategy from having to stay in Zuccotti Park (perhaps with ever-dwindling forces) all through the winter. But the next step is crucial, and it's unclear how well their collective decision structure can handle it.