There was no purpose or goal to any of these confrontations; in fact, the act of confrontation was the goal. Everyone would mill around waiting for something to happen, and then some cops would show up and the crowd would go into a frenzy for no apparent reason. The mere presence of a policeman is all that it takes to send an Oakland Occupier into either blind rage or a life-affirming adrenaline rush.
Ah, but the poseurs and would-be warriors gotta have thrills, baby. Psychodrama’s where it’s at. And look at the effort they’ve gone to. The nose-ring and pocket knife combo is this season’s Occupy Look.
So, what was the purpose of all of this? Nothing. Excitement for the teenage rioters. Moral outrage for the Occupy organisers. Overtime for the cops. Boarded-up windows for the businesses. And higher bills for the taxpayers.