Kudos for your intelligent, beautifully-written, well nuanced commentary. As a young man who came of age during the Vietnam War, I was involved briefly in the civil rights movement on a local level and later in the anti-war movement. When I married, I more or less dropped out to earn a living and raise a family.
Twenty-five years later, I began to focus on very tangible neighborhood issues--recognizing how difficult it to bring about change on even a city-wide scale. I've found that individuals can work within the existing political system to build a consensus and effect positive change given an adequate level of determination and persistence. That process is far easier now than it was back in the late sixties and early seventies thanks to email and all the other social media.
The requisite consensus already exists on the national level on an impressive array of major issues. To cite just one example, some 90% of citizens support raising taxes on those millionaires and billionaires who can most afford to pay more.
I’d hope that the Occupy movement will evolve and begin turning all the anger and distress that exists nationwide into concrete action. To do so successfully, it will have to walk a tightrope--focusing on very specific issues that enjoy broad support while remaining non-violent and while avoiding the kind of extremist rhetoric that alienates people like you (and me).
Thank you for adding your voice to this dialogue and I sincerely hope that you and others of like mind stay actively involved.