‘Occupy’ is just another squat

Let's be clear about B.C. squats. They are explicitly anti-capitalist, rooted in Marxism and illegal.

Occupy Victoria camp: signs warning against 'chemtrails' and smart meters are a sideshow. The consistent message is a demand to dismantle capitalism and nationalize banks.

VICTORIA – A full three weeks after the Occupy Wall Street protest camp sprang up in New York City, a few stragglers announced they were almost ready to “Occupy Maple Ridge” and “Occupy Revelstoke.”

Perhaps other pathetic protests are still being dreamed up around B.C. But most have already packed up, and in places such as Prince George, these anti-capitalist rallies never led to an illegal squat.

Let’s be clear about our squats, the ones in Canada and particularly B.C. They are explicitly anti-capitalist and statist in their message, which is presumably why they were funded by government unions.

Despite the free food, power and porta-potties, these squats quickly became filthy and dangerous as the chronic street drug population replaced the spoiled young drummers and hula-hoopers who camped out to curse corporations on their iPhones.

And yes, squats are still illegal here, following a unanimous October decision of the B.C. Court of Appeal against David Arthur Johnston.

This pretend-homeless guy’s antics are at the root of the latest squatter outbreak. Victoria and its courts caved in to Johnston and allowed camping on public property at night. But he demanded 24-hour squatting rights, because some supposedly homeless people are supposedly insomniacs too. Turns out there were plenty of shelter beds on which to snooze away the day or night, and his vague claim of a constitutional right to camp on public property was summarily dismissed.

I had a brief exchange with an Occupy Vancouver “organizer,” one Min Reyes, as she tried to rouse the reluctant radicals of Maple Ridge. Reyes defines herself in her Twitter profile as “Flirting with Anarchism while making love to Socialism,” which sums up B.C.’s occupy movement as well as anything.

“My personal approach to the analysis of society relies on Marx’s historical materialism,” Reyes writes on her blog. After majoring in Marxism at SFU, she moved on to BCIT’s journalism program, but dropped out after a couple of weeks because her studies “compromised my personal values.” Turns out BCIT is all about “skills” to get a “job.” Bummer.

A glimpse of these “values” was on display when a reporter from CKNW radio tried to cover a heroin overdose at Occupy Vancouver. She was shouted down and accused of shaping the news to benefit “Coke and McDonalds.”

At Occupy Victoria, which I visited a few times before it descended into another needle park, signs warned against “chem trails,” smart meters and corporations. Campers were urged to “nationalize finance, energy and food” industries. Five-year plan for tractor production, anyone?

Nationalizing banks is also at the top of Occupy Vancouver’s long, pretentious list of demands.

Why is this stale leftist ideology so pervasive? Here’s a hint. The union representing these kids’ teachers is demanding higher corporate taxes to pay for their typically self-serving, financially illiterate contract demands.

Here in Victoria, as in Vancouver, the huge growth in shelter, food, clothing and transition housing service doesn’t impress the hardcore system users. Victoria’s mayor built his reputation with years of street outreach work, but he’s still targeted for the ugliest treatment, including vandalism at his family home.

Victoria council even kowtowed by voting to “support” the squat next to city hall, where Johnston used to camp. Then they cut off the power and water, which had been commandeered rather than set up by city staff at taxpayers’ expense, as was the case in Vancouver.

In B.C.’s most “progressive” cities, we’re getting used to encountering public areas fouled by vomit, feces and used needles.

Tom Fletcher is legislative reporter and columnist for Black Press and BCLocalnews.com

Just Posted

More B.C. ambulance service needed in the North: Hospital chief of staff

Fort St. James physicians talk about the need for easier access to healthcare

Broken axle caused New Hazelton train derailment: TSB

It could happen again without a different way to inspect trains

Cullen remains uncertain about political future

Says he’ll make decision in early March

Terrace resident’s bill banning single-use plastics introduced in Ottawa

MP Nathan Cullen’s presented Ben Korving’s private member’s bill Wednesday

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

National Energy Board approves Trans Mountain pipeline again

Next step includes cabinet voting on the controversial expansion

Girl heard saying ‘Help my Dad’ in suspicious radio message on Vancouver Island

Police asking for help following mysterious signals from somewhere between Comox and Sayward

Reports of rashes prompt closure of all Harrison Hot Springs pools

Public pool available after Fraser Health shut down all five mineral pools until further notice

No treatment for highly infectious measles, says doctor

10 cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver as of Friday

Two more measles cases confirmed in Vancouver

It brings the number of total cases within the city connected to the outbreak to ten

B.C. Special Olympics officially underway in Vernon

Athlete’s Oath: “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”

Vancouver Aquarium wants your help to name a baby killer whale

The public helped name Springer’s first calf, Spirit, and is being asked to help with the second

Guards protest firing of fellow officers charged with assault at B.C. prison

Corrections officers demonstrated in Maple Ridge on Friday afternoon

Skier dies at Revelstoke Mountain Resort

Cause of death for young man has not been released

Most Read