I need to first say that I support those protesting against Mubarak. Under his guise, Egypt experienced an intense disparity of wealth that is inhuman and abhorrent. That being said, I grow ambivalent to the nature of protests occurring in Egypt.
What we should recognize is that protesters from both sides are arguing over the government and not the state. As a result, both pro and anti-government camps employ nationalism as the basis for their point of view. They fight over who they will be subject to and how that ruler will be put in place not over true freedom. They fight over representation. Being represented in the government is different than making decisions for one’s self. Having a voice does not mean picking the speaker. The implication is that a democratic government will protect against U.S.-backed regimes like Mubarak’s. This belief is completely unfounded. A democratically-elected leader can be equally as repressive as a self-imposed dictator.
A truly radical and perhaps even more profitable style of protest would be one that turns the power over to the millions living below the poverty line in Egypt. The state looks out after its greatest benefactors and supporters, the ultra-rich. This is true no matter what state you live in. Therefore, the need to create a new government may represent a movement by the people to reclaim autonomy albeit an incomplete one. If Mubarak gets in the way of the organization of the oppressed for the sake of liberation, a proper response is the elimination of the Mubarak regime. The dissolution of the state would be even more imperative. With the elimination of the state, real conversation about how to solve real problems at every level could finally occur. Out from under the powerful hand of the U.S., the people could work to clean up the streets and arise out of poverty. Creation of a new government may solve some problems. I think, in the end, it will only reinforce old structures of nationalist dogma that maintains the wealthy over the poor.