I am no fan of authority. I've worked against it, with it, in it and as it. The need to challenge it constantly I found surprisingly common and supremely necessary in every iteration. So, I do not lightly say that without coherent, forceful and responsible leadership, the OWS movement is going nowhere but down, probably at its own hands.
The recent flag burning in Oakland was the work of fools or worse. I am not going to waste my time or the reader's time arguing the point. How's that for an authoritative statement? Well, my little dears of the OWS, you should not only get used to it, you should crave it. It is the only hope you have. Indeed, it is the only hope we have of building a real movement of value and accomplishment.
Think of Dr. King in the 60s, and his commitment to non-violence. If the Civil Rights movement had not had his strong and unyielding leadership on that commitment, the more radical and/or intentional provocateurs would have killed the cause in its crib. Nothing would have been accomplished. So, whether the stupidity comes from within or the attack comes in the form of mischief cooked up by plants from the outside, a progressive movement needs leadership to overcome it, stick to an effective course of action, win support, and outlast the opposition.