Saturday, December 17, 2011

Occupy Tucson Drama Continues, This Time Thanks to Shaun McClusky

Posted By on Sat, Dec 17, 2011 at 6:29 PM

Shaun McClusky hasn't exactly kept it a secret he's not a supporter of Occupy Tucson on our blog or his Facebook page, which is why it looks like an idea he's cooked up is more about disrupting Occupy and less about charitable giving (By the way, we did try to reach him for comment, but no reply).

The failed mayoral candidate wants to have a food drive at Veinte de Agosto Park, as well as De Anza Park, where some recent Occupy activity has taken place. According to his Facebook page, McClusky received permits from the city to move forward with his plan and he's circulating a Facebook invite, too.

The event is called Take Care of Tucson and takes place Wednesday, Dec. 28, from 4 to 7 p.m.

We will be collecting food for the Community Food Bank, Cold Wet Noses, Hermitage Cat Shelter and the Humane Society. We will have volunteers from Trinity of Angels, a non-profit for abused spouses and children.

A recent piece written by writer Shannon Cain on her blog has taken a healthy swipe at McClusky's motives, as well as calling attention to the ongoing issues at Occupy. Cain, an Occupy Tucson member who volunteers on the legislative working group, hasn't been winning a popularity contest at Occupy, but she's brought up issues in this post that other people are discussing. This isn't new, but you'd think if the goal is to survive and grow, folks would address these issues. Besides McClusky, Cain points out problems with one of Occupy's leaderless leaders, Jon McLane. Like I said, same stuff overheard between tents at Occupy the past two months.

Cain's blog post:

Shaun McClusky has come after Occupy Tucson again. McClusky was this year's failed Republican candidate for mayor and Tea Party darling who has so far been disqualified from two separate local elections for failing to follow rules such as listing top contributors on his disclosure forms and screwing up the collection of signatures on his nominating petitions.

McClusky, who has characterized Occupy Tucson as a “smelly stinky presence” and has said he hopes TPD takes our “unemployed asses to jail,” was yesterday awarded a permit by the City of Tucson for Veinte de Agosto Park and De Anza Park—the only two Occupy-related encampments in Tucson—for one-time events on December 28. McClusky’s planned party: a food drive by a group called “Take Care of Tucson” that would benefit the Community Food Bank and three local animal shelters.

Ah, the evil of McClusky’s plan! Canned food! Cats & dogs! How American! How reasonable! How...legal!

Except that McClosky’s events clearly aren’t motivated by a desire to feed the hungry. His is a ploy to kick Occupy Tucson out of Veinte de Agosto Park. McClusky is using hungry people and abandoned animals as a political shield for his real agenda: to silence this global economic revolution and squelch its impact in Tucson.

Good luck, McClusky. You think that forcing Occupy Tucson to move a few tents is going to stop this movement? This movement is too big, too important, too timely, to be slowed down by the likes of you.

It also doesn’t take much digging to discover your personal vendetta against Jon McLane, the activist behind Occupy Public Lands. OPL is a renegade offshoot of Occupy Tucson that irritates the hell out of many of us, myself unquestionably at the top of the list, for unnecessarily confrontational tactics, camera hogging, dramatic grandstanding, a tenuous grasp on the meaning of “leaderless movement,” and/or a general disregard for the well-being of the mother Occupy organization.

Be that as it may, McClusky and McLane have their own tawdry history: they ran against one another in the mayoral race, and were both disqualified over a failure to follow basic election rules. McLane ran as a Green Party candidate. Yet when McLane’s campaign came to its abrupt halt, he threw his support behind X-treme Republican McClusky, even joining his campaign as chair of the sustainability committee. From Green Party to Tea Party? Wow, there’s a leap. But then McClusky’s petition signatures were challenged in court, so the whole party ended.

Now it seems the boys once again aren’t getting along. Yesterday on McLane’s Facebook page he accused McClusky of orchestrating this weirdly amateur YouTube video attack against him, under veil of the Occupy movement’s self-appointed watchdog, Anonymous. Never mind that the Anonymous video is 6 weeks old. Apparently McLane’s paranoia is getting the better of him.

Bottom line is that a silly combination of male ego and a small-time act of revenge from a frustrated political loser shall result in Occupy Tucson leaving its encampment once again.

It’s okay. This stuff is small potatoes. Dramas manufactured by angry boys shall come and go, but this movement is here to stay. We are riding the wave of global change, tossed in the tumult, exhilarated. The people are waking up.

We’re Occupy Tucson, and we aren’t going anywhere.

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