Mass protests in Europe have actually had an effect on public policy over there. The problem is that any protest that will get the medias attention has the effect of bringing every protest group out into the park, whether or not it's relevant to the issue at hand.
In the 70's and 80's the massive anti-war and anti-nuke rallies swayed a lot of public opinion, even though there was a lot of covert Soviet support for them going on. Now it's just a bunch of left wing radicals wanting air time for their pet cause.
Quit being obtuse.