I’ve long thought that ‘direct action’ is a waste of time in a modern indirect world. Protest are a bit of a throw back to the 1960s where they were first tried in a democracy to a successfully end
- I think they were successful because it was quite a new thing to do in a 1st world country and the system of power wasn’t prepared for it thus there was unlimited media focus.
- It was coupled with a social movement that expressed the angst of a large group of young people (i.e. ‘the baby boomers’), and rode the already existing momentum of social change.
Time has changed dramatically and I don’t think a political decision in the 1st world has been swayed by a protest in decades. What makes me say this is that we had the biggest series of protests around the world in history against the ‘war on terror’.
So maybe it wasn’t the direct action that was important in the 60s but the social movement. People hanging out, sharing love and drugs and generally having a good time. I think the article ‘Your Politics Are Boring As Fuck’ sums it up nicely and offers a more evolved way forward. It realises that people need something back from volunteering, even if its just the basics of pleasant human interaction.
If political activates are fun and sociable (rather than socialist) they will be able to affect more people for longer. After all who doesn’t want to be apart of fun?