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Occupying the Conventions? How Protests Will Change Politics-as-Usual in 2012

Four years after the moment of "hope and change," the 99% is set to alter the dynamics of presidential elections.

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The 99% will be outside the conventions. The 1% will be inside. There will be well-funded men with guns in between them. And that’s where the real political debate will be held. These domestic security forces are trained to look for and eliminate Occupy-style protests. Occupy-style protesters have learned that making noise in a clever and abrupt manner works in projecting their beliefs about the country and its political institutions. The national spotlight will be shining brightly on both conventions. But the speeches inside the halls are not where that spotlight will shine; instead, what we will take away might look a lot more like the iconography the political elites fear.

Matt Stoller is the former senior policy adviser to Rep. Alan Grayson and a fellow at the Roosevelt Institute. He blogs frequently for Naked Capitalism. Follow him on Twitter at @matthewstoller.