Truth, Justice, and the 99%

Or, Superman Occupies Wall Street

I was minding my own tweeting business, when I got a tweet stating that Superman had joined the Occupy Wall Street Movement.  I was a little surprised by this since at this point, I figured OWS as a movement was about as dead as a doornail.  It had been months since an Occupier has pooped on a police car, and there had been little Occupy terrorism in several months.  What benefit could DC have in involving their flagship character, the most popular comic superhero in the world, with a fringe group of crackpots?

But following the link on the tweet it led me to DC Comics character description of the Man of Steel:

A universal icon, Superman means different things to the many diverse people he inspires: He’s an alien; an immigrant from a faraway land just looking to help; a country boy fighting the never-ending battle for truth and justice. And recent comics have truly spotlighted his role as the people’s hero: Following a neophyte Man of Steel still learning his powers’ limits, Superman fights the evil corporate tycoons and corrupt one-percenters that have overwhelmed the establishment.

What the hell?  “one-percenters?”  “evil corporate tycoons?”

One couldn’t also notice that the “American Way” had been excised from the truth and justice Superman unendingly battles for.  Not so much a surprise as Superman renounced his American citizenship in Action Comics 900.  Of course DC had been wrecking both their characters and their universe since their Crisis on Infinite Earths, DC’s 1985 series that eliminated all of its comic alternate universes.  It made a great storyline, but a massive comicsverse such as the ones DC and Marvel have can’t exist without multiple alternate universes.  They clear up continuity problems. And they allow a rebooting updating of the characters such as Marvel did with its Ultimate line.

Without alternate universes, DC has been trying to reboot its prime universe over and over, updating it to the point that none of the history a true comic geek knows about his favorite characters stays history.  Characters origins and previous adventures get altered and changed on a whim.  DC eventually corrected that, resurrecting the multiple universes, but their most recent reboot gave DC the chance to totally redo all of their characters.  An opportunity they apparently took advantage of by making decades old superhero, Green Lantern, gay.  DC did wimp out on this since they took another universe Green Lantern, Earth 2’s Alan Scott, as the gay lantern.  Still, is there really a comic market for that?

I get that artists and other fartsy types are likely to be left leaning.  A little politics mixed in with comics has been going back years.  During the seventies Green Arrow and Green Lantern would simultaneously fight aliens and racism in their own joint comic book.  The series had several sophisticated story lines involving what were then topical issues of the day;  poverty, class, Vietnam, and drugs.  Green Arrow’s sidekick Speedy had a heroin addiction.

But DC, why did you have to go and ruin Superman?

They’ve actually taken the most popular comic book character in the world and made him a lefty political extremist.  And DC wonders why sales of their comics continue to drop.

Since DC is determined to crush both their sales and the characters they had spent decades cultivating, they might as well let the characters go out with a bang before bankruptcy.  Why not reboot the DCU again (20th time’s the charm right?) and make Superman black. Superman, whose alter ego is a mild mannered reporter for Media Matters, can fight super villains like the Koch Brothers. As an illegal immigrant himself, Superman can kick down the border fence in Arizona, and fly back to Boston to smoke pot in the Commons with the other Occupiers by noon.

How can DC go wrong?

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Beer Not Bombs!

Florida had overtaken California in the fruit and nuts department many years ago.  Stories involving kooky people doing kooky things used to be primarily a California deal, but these days Florida generates the nutty stories.  Florida even has its own tag on Fark.  Now we’ve even got our own domestic terrorist group.


Anarchism (Photo credit: anarchosyn)

“Prosecutors allege that three men were plotting to attack President Obama’s campaign headquarters, Mayor Emanuel home and several Chicago police stations with Molotov cocktails.

The defense said that’s not true and all of this is a set up by Chicago police.

New details have been revealed about what was going on inside this apartment in the 1000 block of 32nd Street. Three protesters are now charged with several counts of conspiracy to commit terrorism.

Brian Church from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Jared Chase from Keene, New Hampshire and Brent Betterly from Oakland Park, Florida are each being held on a $1.5 million bond.

Each man has been charged with material to support terrorism, conspiracy to commit terrorism and possession of explosives – a first for the state”.

So with our two terrorist contributions, Florida once again intrudes on the national consciousness.

Of course this isn’t the first time Florida has generated domestic terrorists.  In 2006 members of a Miami based Muslim group were arrested for plotting to blow up the Sears Tower.  Oddly enough, another Chicago target.  But those guys were still in the planning stages.  No serious preparation had been made.  These terrorists were actually in Chicago with their equipment.

According to the Illinois State Attorney’s office, these men were a member of a Black Bloc anarchist group.  These are the groups that travel the world showing up at various international conferences, such as the     G-8, or in this case, NATO, and basically commit street mayhem.  Politically, they are leftist, although they most often describe themselves as anarchists.

Naturally these were also Occupy veterans as well.

Although amongst the many kooky groups on the left, anarchism is probably the most marginalized, they are still the guys willing to go out and blow stuff up for their cause.  Whenever there is an international conference, they will show up in that city and start smashing windows.  However as a philosophy, anarchism (at least the modern variety) is pretty much devoid of any real public policy positions.  Worried about the financial crisis?  Smash a window.  Upset over the bailout of banks?  Poop on a cop car.  Don’t like the way the big Western economies dominate the third world?  Hit a cop.

It’s not really a program that many can get behind, although for the sake of inflating their numbers, the Occupy movement as well as any other lefty protest is always glad to have them.  But anarchists seem somewhat of a paradox on the left.  Most leftists are authoritarian statists.  They want to build up the state and just love to tell people what to do, whether it’s forcing them to buy a particular health insurance plan or restricting snack foods.  Anarchists want to smash the State altogether.  No military or cops.  Yeah we get it.  I can only assume that the lefty connection, besides the historical one, has to do with that.  Your regular garden variety liberal loves the Big State, but doesn’t have much use for the military, police, or border security; the primary functions of government.  Liberals are only interested in secondary and tertiary government functions like regulating everyone and distributing social services to supporters.

Although the various groups on the left embrace the anarchists and consider them part of the family of the left, it’s easy to do since they, unlike on the right, are never tarred with the violence committed by their anarchist cousins.  When the left commits violence, the blame goes squarely to the individuals, never the philosophy or politics that spawned it.  Meanwhile the media blamed the militia movement, Christianity, and Rush Limbaugh for the Oklahoma City bombing, and the shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was, within minutes of being reported, was laid at the feet of Sarah Palin.

That sort of lack of accountability on the left makes it easy for them to be fairly lackadaisical when their side commits violence.  Watch and see if any MSM connects these knuckleheads to the Occupy movement, even though they are Occupy members.

But what makes this a Florida story is that their defense is that the bomb making equipment was actually a beer homebrew kit.  Maybe when these guys get out of jail they can recover that equipment and go into business making some Occupy Wall Street labeled specialty brews.  They’ll have to get over their distaste of capitalism first, but I’m sure they’ll have many years in a Federal prison to ruminate on that.

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