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Collective Tantrum Update

The WSJ notes in an editorial today on the Occupy [Whatever] movement, "And so, one by one, they are being evicted now. In Oakland, Portland, Salt Lake, Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, and not least, our two favorites--Occupy Youngstown and Occupy Whitehorse, Yukon (with which, conceivably, there might have been broad sympathy)."

On the front page of the WSJ there is a news story on the New York eviction, but the accompanying picture (apparently not online) is priceless.  An occupier holds a sign saying, "Please help.  Beaten and arrested last night.  Came home to an empty park.  Lost everything.  P.S. I love you." (All caps omitted.)  "Home" you say?  By what right do you make a park your home?  Empty park?  Surely you had to know that it would be cleared eventually.  Lost everything?  Why were you foolish enough to take anything of value there?  Was your goal to confirm that the occupiers are the whining, spoiled brats that many persons of sense have thought they were all along?  Congratulations.  You succeeded.

James Taranto considers Bloomberg's actions "better late than never."  "'Health and safety conditions became intolerable,' the New York Times quotes the mayor as saying--though why it took him two months to figure that out is left unexplained."

Yet there may be value, intended or not, in the delay.  It is suggested in this column by SF Chrontrarian Debra Saunders.

The Bay Area has come down with a serious case of Protest Fatigue. The 99 percent of Northern Californians who want to go about their business are being jammed with protests and forced to pay for shutdowns imposed by the 1 percent of activists who don't know the difference between free speech and free camping. There are so many protests here that the group No Justice No BART had to call off a planned demonstration on Nov. 2 in order to accommodate activists planning to take public transit to the Occupy Oakland general strike.
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Oakland Mayor Jean Quan finally found the backbone to allow police to evict the Occupy Oakland encampment last month. Unfortunately, the howls of outrage that followed were so intense that Quan invited the tent sitters to return to Frank Ogawa Plaza.

A funny thing happened after her capitulation. The howls of outrage got louder. Local businesses let City Hall know that the demonstrations were starving their cash registers, voters complained that law-breaking Occupiers were fouling their public square, and taxpayers voiced alarm at the rising cost of police overtime and cleanup efforts.

By Nov. 3, as the Oakland City Council was set to vote on a resolution in support of Occupy Oakland's "rights to free speech and peaceful assembly 24 hours a day, seven days a week," author Nancy Nadel was forced to admit she didn't have the votes.
Wow.  Common sense prevailing in Oakland?  Wait.  It gets better.

Protest Fatigue also has come to Berkeley.

This is not a university that wants to squelch protest, especially left-leaning movement activists who want to elbow Washington and Sacramento to fork more money onto higher education's plate.

In 2006, when activists decided to occupy oak trees that the university wanted to cut down, they were able to trespass in the trees for 20 months. An Alameda Superior Court judge issued an injunction that barred UC from putting chain saw to timber. But rules that constrained UC administrators did not interfere with tree sitters, who foolishly equated Berkeley with Guantanamo Bay and lobbed feces at authorities, who nonetheless served them water and energy bars.

The cause was frivolous, the trees are now sawdust, but Berkeley's reputation for appeasing scofflaw protests has lived on. Until perhaps last week, when campus police removed all the tents and arrested protesters.

Finally, university toffs had sent a message to self-aggrandizing lefties: no more Mr. Nice Guy.

Chancellor Robert Birgeneau had warned activists on their "Day of Action." In a statement, he explained, "We simply cannot afford to spend our precious resources and, in particular, student tuition, on costly and avoidable expenses associated with violence or vandalism."
(Emphasis added.)

The occupiers have caused candles of sense to be lit in dark places.  That is a positive effect.

A couple more random links:  SF Examiner Mike Aldax has this report of 24 hours spent at Occupy SF.  Tauntr.com proposes Occupy Sesame Street with some very funny pictures. 

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