Last night the students at UC Berkeley took the bait and amassed outside the student union to protest (any sane person would have advised them to just ignore the troll and let him disappear into the woods).
Sadly, the peaceful protest was interrupted by a group of hoodlums who showed up to torch some garbage cans and mess things up:
(Photo: Byron Villacis via Berkeleyside)
This morning President TicTac weighed in with a not so subtle threat against the whole university and its federal funding. Why? Who knows. The University and (by all accounts) the protesting students weren’t the ones involved in the acts of violence. But why let a good crisis go to waste?
Which brings us to the age-old question of:
The only positive outcome of this event was for El Presidente and his anti-progressive rhetoric, a few goons of dubious origin who showed up to cause a mess, and Milo Yiannopoulos (incidentally, an editor at Breitbart) and his
The so-called Antifa group, incidentally, have had a history of bad-blood between them and local ‘fa’ groups. But why would real Anti-Fascists try to attack people who were protesting the vitriol coming out of a Breitbart fabulist. You’d think they’d happily join along.
Which brings us to the topic of historical shit-shows (aka False Flags) instigated by people to make their enemies look bad so they could advance their own cause. The progressives (and especially Berkeley students) may want to take notes.
The most notorious historical bit of fakery was, of course, the Reichstag Fire.
A much less well-known one was a little sleight-of-hand by the Italian police in 2001.
Now let’s not for a minute compare the inconvenience of a pointless shit-stain of a human being like Milo whatsisname to such large, momentous events.
But the notion of innocuous events being subverted into violent protests which were used as an excuse to initiate larger counter-events is something that has been with us for a long-time.
As we move into a nation of permanent protesters, we should be on alert that it will be fairly easy to transform a peaceful march into a large-scale riot with relative ease. And then to use the riot to tighten the authoritarian clamps.
Organizers of such protests should ask themselves how they can preempt and prevent these types of subversions. The best tactic is open and transparent communication with the police, training for participants and volunteers, and a rapid shutdown of any bad behavior before it gets out of hand.
Last night’s event should act as a wakeup call to progressives. From now on, every organized event should be on notice. Your peaceful march can turn into a miasma of police helicopters, tear gas, and defensive back-pedalling that will completely obscure the original intent of your gathering. Be vigilant and prepared for these sorts of subversions.
And the question smart media folks should always ask before devolving into sensationalistic headlines is:
Of course, it’s easy to go to the other extreme and believe every fabulist point/counter-point of deceptions.
So let us stick to the facts and not forget that Tin Foil Hats Actually Make it Easier for the Government to Track Your Thoughts.
“The… press is all about lies! All they tell is lies, lies and more lies!”
“They do not even have control over themselves! Do not believe them!”
“This is unbased.”
“I have detailed information about the situation . . . which completely proves that what they allege are illusions . . . They lie every day.”
“We will push those crooks, those mercenaries back into the swamp.”
“The American people are not stupid, they are very clever.”
“I will only answer reasonable questions.”
“They are becoming hysterical. This is the result of frustration.”
“They are lying every day. They are lying always, and mainly they are lying to their public opinion.”
“Some members of the media were engaged in deliberately false reporting.”
“We are winning!”
Please help us welcome: President TicTac.
Buckle-up. Going to be a fun ride.
With a hat-tip to our patron saint, Molly Ivins.