Huge victory at Occupy Wall Street this morning! At 6 A.M., thousands of people gathered at Zucotti Park to defend the occupation from Bloomberg’s threat of eviction. By 7 A.M., Bloomberg was forced to concede, saying that he was abandoning plans to clear the park!
At 7 a.m. tomorrow, New York Mayor Bloomberg plans to effectively evict the Occupy Wall Street protesters.
Mayor Bloomberg is ordering Occupy Wall Street protesters out of Zuccotti Park for a cleanup at sunrise, and his new rules for their return would effectively shut down the occupation.
Will you consider coming out to Zuccotti Park to support the protests?
Since the protests are a truly organic movement, and aren’t organized by the AFL-CIO, we can’t tell you exactly what will be happening. But what we can tell you is this: the more people who can stand in solidarity at this critical moment, the better.
As I write this message, Occupy Wall Street is asking people to show up at midnight. But whether you are reading this message before or after midnight, I encourage you to get the latest details here: http://www.occupywallst.org
To find Zuccotti Park on Google maps, click here. Thank you for coming out to stand with the 99 percent.
Mayor Bloomberg is trying to shut down Occupy Wall Street - Call For Action!! (submission from ftm-communist)
Last night Mayor Bloomberg and the NYPD notified Occupy Wall Street participants about plans to “clean the park”—the site of the Wall Street protests—tomorrow starting at 7am. “Cleaning” was used as a pretext to shut down “Bloombergville” a few months back, and to shut down peaceful occupations elsewhere.
Bloomberg says that the park will be open for public usage following the cleaning, but with a notable caveat: Occupy Wall Street participants must follow the “rules”.
NYPD Police Commissioner Ray Kelly has said that they will move in to clear us and we will not be allowed to take sleeping bags, tarps, personal items or gear back into the park.
This is it—this is their attempt to shut down #OWS for good.
PLEASE TAKE ACTION
1) Call 311 (or +1 (212) NEW-YORK if you’re out of town) or text 2311692 and tell Bloomberg to support our right to assemble and to not interfere with #OWS.
2) Come to #OWS TONIGHT AT MIDNIGHT to defend the occupation from eviction.
For those of you who plan to help us hold our ground—which we hope will be all of you—make sure you understand the possible consequences. Be prepared to not get much sleep. Be prepared for possible arrest. Make sure your items are together and ready to go (or already out of the park.) We are pursuing all possible strategies; this is a message of solidarity.
Hilarious article from the inimitable Danny Lucia.
THE OCCUPY Wall Street movement has put New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg (net worth: $19.5 billion) in a bit of a pickle.
Being both the city’s mayor and its richest person makes him a poster child for the tyranny of the One Percent. Actually, as the 12th richest person in America, Bloomberg is technically part of the 0.0000001 Percent, but that’s hard to put into a chant. When this guy hangs out with the One Percent, he’s practically slumming.
… But the mayor isn’t the only one having a hard time finding an effective way to slam the protests.
Rush Limbaugh denounced the protests as “99 percent white kids”—which isn’t true, but I like the idea that he would be down with the struggle if only there were more brothers in the park. I think if Occupy Wall Street were 99 percent Black and Brown kids, Rush Limbaugh would be calling for air strikes.
Of those who had an opinion on the occupation, 54% were favourable to the movement, with only 23% against (25% very favourable and 29% somewhat favourable, compared to 10% somewhat unfavourable and 13% very unfavourable)
86% agree that Wall Street has too much influence in Washington.
79% agree that the income gap in the United States is too large.
An amazing 71% agree that financial executives who had a hand in the 2008 crisis should be prosecuted!
68% agree that the rich should pay more in taxes, and 73% agree that we should raise taxes on those who make $1 million or more a year. 74% agree that raising taxes on millionaires would NOT ‘hurt the economic recovery,’ contrary to the Republican panic.
Unfortunately, 56% believe that the protest will have little impact on the overall situation, but 30% believe it will have a positive impact.
While we should always be careful not to put too much stock in these polls, this one at least has some good news for those who support #OWS.
Mayor Mike McGinn just issued the following statement about last night’s confused orders to Occupy Seattle protesters—police may arrest you, no they’re not going to arrest you, actually they’re going to play head games until they provoke protesters to do something rash—to say police were operating under his orders to warn arrests could happen:
The Parks Department and the Seattle Police were under instructions last night to inform people of the rules that apply to Westlake Park, but to not make arrests for camping at this time.
Got it, brilliant, police were simply under orders to threaten arrest. McGinn didn’t intend to follow through. So when Paul asked Lt. Nollette what they were doing, she was simply communicating that order:
"Everybody was advised twice that the park closes at 10:00 p.m. and that they could be subject to arrest.” Asked if the mayor knew about this, she said, “I have no idea.”
Very clever, Mike McGinn. You’re declaring support for the protesters and harassing them. The commanding officer on the scene was just telling protesters what could possibly, maybe, perhaps—who knows, really?—happen if they don’t leave. That jibes with this announcement that if protesters “don’t leave the area you can be subject to arrest for criminal trespass.”
But interesting that the
cops didn’t know what the mayor’s office knew, the mayor’s office sent a staffer scrambling down to the scene to defuse the situation, and the police needed to make regular loudspeaker announcements (even though making noise was a ticketable offense a few nights ago because it would upset nearby residents). What will “Mayor” McGinn threaten next—and is he capable of following through?
Just a concern from someone who participates in Occupy Denver. I've seen today, alone, from Occupy Atlanta and Occupy Philidelphia, two incidents of racism. I'm very concerned that this will pop up all over, and Occupy Denver has gone above and beyond to reach out to minorities, like endorsing American Indian Movement of Colorado's challenge. I think there needs to be a condemning of this behavior. Is there any way we can get that? Racism isn't cool, it doesn't help this movement.
“Remember, the problem is not corruption or greed, the problem is the system. Beware not only of the enemies, but also of false friends who are already working to dilute this process in the same way that we get coffee without caffeine, beer without alcohol, [or] ice cream without fat. They will try to make this into a harmless moral protest.”—Slavoj Zizek at Open Forum, Occupy Wall Street, October 9. (via domesticterrorism)
Can you please help promote the blog OccupyAllStreets tumblr com? Anyone who is dedicated to spreading information on occupations near them can become a member of the blog. We also encourage members to create events for their occupations like the one we've just create called Occupy Times Square. When we have enough RSVP on facebook we will present it at a general assembly in OWS. Time Square has pedestrian sidewalks so it's the perfect place to protest without having the cops harass protesters.
Not surprisingly, Mr. Chavez expressed solidarity with American activists who have been staging rallies and marches against what they view as corporate greed by Wall Street.
The U.S. protests, which began last month in New York and have spread to Tampa, Florida, Seattle and other cities, have mostly been peaceful but sometimes resulted in confrontations. Dozens were arrested and police used pepper spray in New York earlier this week.
“This movement of popular outrage is expanding to 10 cities and the repression is horrible, I don’t know how many are in prison now,” Mr. Chavez said in comments at a political meeting in his Caracas presidential palace shown on state TV.
“It is not the job of the protesters to draft legislation. That’s the job of the nation’s leaders, and if they had been doing it all along there might not be a need for these marches and rallies. Because they have not, the public airing of grievances is a legitimate and important end in itself. It is also the first line of defense against a return to the Wall Street ways that plunged the nation into an economic crisis from which it has yet to emerge.”—Lo and behold, after weeks of terrible Occupy Wall Street coverage, The NY Times publishes a strong, clear, and well-reasoned editorial expressing wholehearted support for the movement. (via wespeakfortheearth)
To the Mayor of Seattle and SPD: Stop Harassing the Occupiers!
So being a Seattle native, I still have a soft spot for my fellow rabble-rousers in the Northwest. Especially when I read that Occupy Portland had 3-5,000 people marching last weekend! The last thing Seattle needs is more of an inferiority complex about competing with Portland :) so I was glad to hear that Occupy Seattle is picking up some steam this week, slowly winning over the local unions and local media (The Stranger!) alike.
However, reading about how the Seattle Police Department and the Mayor’s Office have treated the occupiers is really disappointing. Over the past few days, they have been harassed by SPD and Park Police constantly, forbidding them from setting up tents, trying to drive them from the square, and generally being assholes. It’s gone so far that the Seattle Police have been ticketing drivers who drive by the occupation and honk in support. Can you believe that? Now, fast-forward to last night:
Mayor’s office spokesman Aaron Pickus said about an hour ago that cops wouldn’t bug protesters at Westlake Park tonight as long as they didn’t have a “structure.” But other than that, things were hunky-dorey.
Cut to right now.
Police are aggressively clearing people out of the park. Cops are telling people they can’t stand underneath the awnings, can’t wrap themselves in a tarp, and
can’t even sit down with an umbrella. “You can’t have an umbrella open unless you’re standing and holding it,” a cop reportedly just told a few people who were sitting down next to their umbrellas. Paul Contant, intrepid reporter, just called to confirm that person’s account. And he added, “The cops are lined up under the awnings—I tried to get under an awning to type and and they told me I cannot be under the awning at all.” Police are also telling people they can’t lay under a tarp.
That’s right: you can now be arrested in Seattle’s Westlake Park for sitting down while holding an umbrella to protect yourself from the rain. All because the Mayor’s new ‘rules’ for the park, updated a couple days ago (conveniently), forbid erecting a structure in the park. And umbrellas apparently count as a structure to the police.
So, this is bullshit, right? I’ve already written the mayor to let him know that he can kiss my vote for his re-election goodbye if he doesn’t cut this out immediately. But we need as much help as we can get. If you can spare a couple minutes today, please let Mayor McGinn’s office know that you DO NOT approve of his strong-arm tactics to break up this demonstration!
The “99%” is not one social body, but many. Some occupiers have presented a narrative in which the “99%” is characterized as a homogenous mass. The faces intended to represent “ordinary people” often look suspiciously like the predominantly white, law-abiding middle-class citizens we’re used to seeing on television programs, even though such people make up a minority of the general population.
It’s a mistake to whitewash over our diversity. Not everyone is waking up to the injustices of capitalism for the first time now; some populations have been targeted by the power structure for years or generations. Middle-class workers who are just now losing their social standing can learn a lot from those who have been on the receiving end of injustice for much longer.
The problem isn’t just a few “bad apples.” The crisis is not the result of the selfishness of a few investment bankers; it is the inevitable consequence of an economic system that rewards cutthroat competition at every level of society. Capitalism is not a static way of life but a dynamic process that consumes everything, transforming the world into profit and wreckage. Now that everything has been fed into the fire, the system is collapsing, leaving even its former beneficiaries out in the cold. The answer is not to revert to some earlier stage of capitalism—to go back to the gold standard, for example; not only is that impossible, those earlier stages didn’t benefit the “99%” either. To get out of this mess, we’ll have to rediscover other ways of relating to each other and the world around us.
#ows is growing. We will be in a thousand cities in this country by the end of the month - hundreds of cities in other countries. We will see General Assemblies on six continents.
Liberty Square has grown exponentially over the last three weeks. It is time to form a second General Assembly in Manhattan. We expect more to follow.
On October eighth at three in the afternoon a General Assembly will convene in Washington Square Park. At the same time Anti-Flag will play an acoustic set in Liberty Square in solidarity with our movement’s expansion.
We are growing. Block by block – city by city. We will see change in this country, in this world. It will happen sooner than you can imagine.
On October 7, 2011, representatives from Occupy Portland, the Portland Marathon, the Mayor’s office, and the City of Portland met to discuss plans for Chapman Park and Lownsdale Square.
After the conclusion of yesterday’s successful march, numerous people asked for permission to camp in the parks overnight. Those camping were told that the Portland Marathon has had a long-standing permit that began on October 7 at 9 a.m., to allow for preparations before Sunday’s Portland Marathon. This morning, Occupy Portland’s General Assembly held a press conference and stated that they were in support of the Portland Marathon and wanted to work collaboratively on an agreement that would suit the needs of both organizations.
The communication between all the parties has been marked by a desire to be collaborative. At this time, discussions are productive, but have not reached a final conclusion. We will release further updates as discussions progress.
The mood in the parks is relaxed, and people who are camping are otherwise following park rules. The Police Bureau will continuously monitor the camping situation, but are not expecting any large-scale issues.
Last night, one man and one juvenile were arrested by Central Precinct night shift officers after they were observed by a citizen “tagging” several locations in Downtown Portland, including a marked Portland Police Bureau patrol car. The Portland Police Bureau will make arrests as necessary, as we are committed to public safety. However, we believe there is a spirit of cooperation with Occupy Portland, and that participants are educating each other in an effort to deter further criminal activity.
Talk about setting a great example! NYPD, SFPD, Seattle PD, etc.: are you listening?
I wanted to take a moment to respond to my various friends on various social networks who are linking to the above Ben & Jerry’s announcement that the brand supports the Occupy Wall Street protests.
It doesn’t really matter what Ben & Jerry’s board of directors supports as they are merely a division of consumer products conglomerate Unilever, the third largest food company behind Nestle and Kraft. Don’t be fooled by a shallow marketing ploy.
This is one of the problems with global corporations—they can have no obligation besides profit. The pleasant statements from a small brand within an enormous conglomerate do not reflect what your dollars support when you buy their products. Short of a Unilever announcement of support—followed by a fundamental restructuring of the company—we shouldn’t take the B&J statement seriously.
Ben & Jerry’s concerns don’t mesh with their parent company—you know, the people who pocket your money when you scarf down a pint of Schweddy Balls ice cream.
The B&J statement lists the following concerns they claim to share with the protestors:
The inequity that exists between classes in our country is simply immoral.
Many workers who have jobs have to work 2 or 3 of them just to scrape by.
When Unilever CEO Niall Fitzgerald left Unilever in 2004, he received more than $20-million in salary, bonus, and benefits. Current CEO Paul Polman has made it a priority to close factories, eliminate jobs, freeze wages, and raise the cost of their products. His starting pay package was around $4-million. By contrast, starting wages at Ben & Jerry’s are $8/hour. No wonder workers need 2 or 3 jobs just to scrape by.
We are in an unemployment crisis. Almost 14 million people are unemployed. Nearly 20% of African American men are unemployed. Over 25% of our nation’s youth are unemployed.
Unilever has laid off more than half its global workforce since 2000, despite increases in profits and productivity alongside rising executive pay packets. A 2010 report from FNV organization of unions found that Unilever has denied workers their legal rights, refused to recognize trade unions as representatives of the work-force, intimidated workers and replaced permanent workers with casual, temporary labourers who have fewer rights. It also estimated that around half of Unilever’s global workforce (approximately 150,000 people) is now outsourced. This means that all these people are not recognised as employees and Unilever does not pay them the wages and benefits that unions have successfully fought for and negotiated.
Unilever is concerned with racial inequality in employment. The company’s solution? Their very own skin-lightening cream.
Unilever’s proper concern for racial inequality in employment is ironic considering the company’s India division sells a skin-lightening cream (Fair & Lovely) that is promoted in commercials depicting depressed, dark-skinned women who are ignored by their employers until they use the cream, suddenly finding glamorous careers and happiness. Watch, it’s crazy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIUQ5hbRHXk
And, why not, child labor, too:
The page goes on to list B&J’s myriad, mostly benign lobbying efforts, but this caught my eye:
Support for the Youth PROMISE Act, which funds proven youth violence prevention programs.
It’s good that they oppose child violence. But a report from Indian researcher Dr. D. Venkateswarlu for the Indian Committee of the Netherlands estimated that 25,000 children, mostly girls, work an average of ten to thirteen hours a day in cottonseed production for Hindustan Lever, a division of Unilever.
So, in case you’ve forgotten, it was a play in three acts.
In the first act, bankers took advantage of deregulation to run wild (and pay themselves princely sums), inflating huge bubbles through reckless lending. In the second act, the bubbles burst — but bankers were bailed out by taxpayers, with remarkably few strings attached, even as ordinary workers continued to suffer the consequences of the bankers’ sins. And, in the third act, bankers showed their gratitude by turning on the people who had saved them, throwing their support — and the wealth they still possessed thanks to the bailouts — behind politicians who promised to keep their taxes low and dismantle the mild regulations erected in the aftermath of the crisis.
Given this history, how can you not applaud the protesters for finally taking a stand?
Now, it’s true that some of the protesters are oddly dressed or have silly-sounding slogans, which is inevitable given the open character of the events. But so what? I, at least, am a lot more offended by the sight of exquisitely tailored plutocrats, who owe their continued wealth to government guarantees, whining that President Obama has said mean things about them than I am by the sight of ragtag young people denouncing consumerism.
Bear in mind, too, that experience has made it painfully clear that men in suits not only don’t have any monopoly on wisdom, they have very little wisdom to offer. When talking heads on, say, CNBC mock the protesters as unserious, remember how many serious people assured us that there was no housing bubble, that Alan Greenspan was an oracle and that budget deficits would send interest rates soaring.
(NEWSER) – The “Occupy” movement has spread a lot further than Wall Street—as have the arrests. Protests inspired by the ongoing anti-big business demonstrations in New York took place in cities across the US yesterday, including Los Angeles, Portland, Cleveland, Las Vegas, Houston, and Washington, DC, and organizers say this could be just the beginning. There were arrests throughout the country, too: The Sacramento Bee reports that about 19 protestors, who were sitting in front of the entrance to Cesar Chavez Park, were arrested shortly after midnight.
Around the same time in San Francisco, cops busted up a camp outside the Federal Reserve Bank building, dismantling tents and arresting one protester who allegedly assaulted a cop, reports the Chronicle. In Los Angeles, KTLA reports that 10 protesters were arrested yesterday afternoon after refusing to leave a Bank of America branch, where they were among those who tried to cash an oversize $673 billion check made out to the “people of California.” But the fresh arrests haven’t been limited to California. On Wednesday night, 25 people who refused to break down their camp in a Seattle park were arrested, reports KIRO.
“So yeah, I’m looking back at my snide post where I called the vanguard of this “trustafarians,” and once again, I feel like an idiot. This may still fizzle out without any real change, but right now, it seems to be building, and the reason it is is because a small group of people went out there and publicly voiced their displeasure with the shit I’ve been sitting on my fat ass writing dyspeptic posts about for the last year, but not really doing a god damned thing to enact change. Yeah, it was some jackasses with a drum circle, and no, they didn’t have a point by point plan or coherent media strategy like some anal retentive douchebags like me were demanding. But they went out there and did something, and it seems to be working. Let’s hope it keeps growing.”—The More This Happens — John Cole admits he was wrong about #OccupyWallStreet (via underthemountainbunker)