Walden Bellow – From the Battle of Seattle to the Financial Crisis

I had many lessons from the Battle of Seattle, and one of them was that policewomen can deal it out as good as any policeman. I got beaten up, badly, by one of Seattle’s best.  Yesterday, I decided go down memory lane and visit the scene of the crime.  I remember seeing Medea Benjamin of Code Pink being treated fairly roughly and I rushed forward to try to get the police to stop. At that point, a policewoman rushed me and started beating me with her baton, while dragging me and dumping me on the street, with the coup de grace being a well planted kick to my derriere. But that was not the biggest blow of all. The biggest was to my ego: I deserved to be beaten and kicked, but wasn’t fit to be arrested.

Like Caesar, I will divide my talk into three parts. First, some reflections on what Seattle means for change in knowledge systems. Second, a discussion of how, despite the deep crisis of neoliberalism, finance capital has managed to retain tremendous power. Third, an appeal for a new comprehensive vision of the desirable society.

Read more