It’s the funniest thing. You know Western civilization? That patriarchal, logocentric, heteronormative collection of imperial hubris, Gaeacidal ideology, facist-capitalist-authoritarian economics, and war-worshipping mindset that continually oppresses the organizationally challenged and seeks to dismiss the concerns of the differently-paradigmed? Yeah, those folks. You know what their phallocentric engineer-destroyers have been doing while more enlightened people have been conducting on-street seminars on the inherent privilege found in semiotic analysis of protest communication – at least, said analysis that is insufficiently diverse so as to accept the profound meaning implied by unconstrained grammar and nonrestricted spelling*? Can you guess?

Well, I’ll tell you: they went out and invented thermal imaging. Which is, of course, something that lets you look at a bunch of tents and determine whether they’ve got people in them or not. In fact, London’s Daily Mail sent out a person with a thermal imaging camera to Occupy London Stock Exchange late one night and discovered that the answer was mostly not:

These are the damning images that prove the anti-capitalist protest that has closed St Paul’s Cathedral is all but deserted at night.

Footage from a thermal imaging camera taken late at night reveals just a fraction of the makeshift camp was occupied.

An independent thermal imaging company, commissioned by the Daily Mail, captured these pictures after similar footage from a police helicopter found only one in ten tents were occupied after dark.

(Photos at the link; via Instapundit)

Now, I’d love to be able to tell you that you can pick up a thermal imaging camera from Radio Shack: alas, they’re going for a couple of grand, retail. On the other hand, night scopes in general look like they go for a couple of hundred bucks; and it’s the principle of the thing, right? Which is: this is the twenty-first century. Masking one’s numbers by putting up extra tents and suchlike is a trick that the Ancient Romans knew. Which is why we actually have thermal imagers, in fact: people got tired of having that trick work.

So, it makes you wonder: how many other Potemkin tent villages are there in this Potemkin movement?

Moe Lane (crosspost)