Authorities say dozens of Occupy Wall Street protesters were arrested as they tore down the barricades surrounding New York City’s Zuccotti Park just before midnight on New Year’s Eve.
Police say 68 people were arrested during the scuffle. At least one person was accused of assaulting a police officer, who suffered cuts on one hand. Other charges include trespassing, disorderly conduct and reckless endangerment.
Protester Jason Amadi says he was pepper-sprayed when police tried to prevent the crowd of about 500 demonstrators from taking down the barricades. Amadi says the crowd piled the barricade pieces in the center of the park and stood on top of them, chanting and singing.
The Wall Street bull has been one lonely bovine since the end of summer.
The sculpture was corralled behind barricades when the Occupy Wall Street protest began Sept. 17, as police feared vandals might try to damage the stock market mascot.
After three-plus months of isolation, the iconic animal is going to be freed from its caging at noon Monday, said Arthur Piccolo, bull advocate and chairman of the Bowling Green Association.
Piccolo is organizing a belated birthday party for the statue, which has stood ready to roar up Broadway since Dec. 20, 1989.
There will be a ceremony honoring the sculpture and artist Arturo DiModica, who created the proud bronze beast as a Christmas gift to the Big Apple and a tribute to America’s economic rebound in the wake of the 1987 stock market crash.
To ensure our society is sustainable over the long term, we have to attend not just to environmental issues and climate change, but to the economic crisis, and the depletion of natural resources. Responses that deal with all three aspects of our sustainability predicament will not only be more effective than those that don’t, but they can be framed in terms of whichever aspect can gain broader public support.
The powerful corporate elites who profit from our continued addiction to fossil fuels have misled the public and blocked climate change response. On the other hand, the Occupy Wall Street movement is successfully raising public attention to economic injustice and the financial crisis, also caused by those elites. Both campaigns are missing crucial parts of the story, but each can supply what the other lacks: a message that has traction with the public, and a clearer strategic focus[…]
Personal changes are necessary but insufficient. Government action is needed, but is often blocked by political and cultural factors. By organizing at the community level, wherever we can get traction, we can eventually involve enough citizens to trigger the wider government responses needed.
A member of the Occupy London protests was stopped from boarding his flight home for Christmas after he was found carrying anarchist literature, it has been claimed.
The demonstrator, who is part of the group occupying the empty UBS building dubbed the “Bank of Ideas”, said he was told he would not be allowed on the Ryanair flight to Malaga because the pilot feared he might distribute leaflets and “upset other passengers”.
John Charles Culatto, 34, claimed he was approached by police at Bristol International Airport who told him they had seen him “acting suspiciously” on the airport’s CCTV system when he stopped to talk to fellow travellers.
He said he went to airport security an hour before his flight was due to depart, where staff found posters in his bag linked to the anarchist group Crimethinc and refused to allow him through until they had contacted the airline. He claimed he overheard security staff who were examining his luggage using the word “terrorism”.
When he finally got to the boarding gate, he claimed he was prevented from boarding by staff. Mr Culatto said: “[I was told] that because of the very remote possibility I could distribute leaflets on the plane and upset people, the captain had decided not to take me aboard.”
A spokesman for Servisair, which manages the departure gates, said Mr Culatto was stopped because he arrived at the gate after it closed because of the time it took to clear security. He said the decision not to allow him to fly was taken by the airline.
Ryanair called the allegations “complete and utter rubbish”.
A spokesman for Avon and Somerset Police confirmed that “a 34-year-old man was delayed by airport security”. He said: “We sent some officers at the airport’s request but they were not required.”
Noam Chomsky has advice for the Occupy movement, whose encampments all over the country are being swept away by police. The occupations were a “brilliant” idea, he says, but now it’s time to “move on to the next stage” in tactics. He suggests political organizing in the neighborhoods.
The Occupy camps have shown people how “to break out of this conception that we’re isolated.” But “just occupying” has “lived its life,” says the man who is the most revered radical critic of American politics and capitalist economics.
Chomsky gave his counsel answering questions in a small group after a speech Monday evening, December 12, in the 1000-seat Westbrook Middle School auditorium (a/k/a Westbrook Performing Arts Center), which was filled to capacity. The speech was sponsored by the University of New England’s Center for Global Humanities.
The Occupy movement’s repression, which Chomsky decried, has a saving grace, he said: the opportunity for it to expand more into “the 99 percent” by engaging people “face to face.”
"Don’t be obsessed with tactics but with purpose," he suggested. "Tactics have a half life."
My message will have to be brief. But let not this brevity take from it, its strength.
You are the central movement of the hour. You’re raising questions that are in the hearts of millions. Your motto, “We are the 99%,” has been heard, heeded, and responded to by millions. You can be certain that the 1% have heard you clearest of all.
Your work, however, is just beginning. You must deepen, strengthen, and further your work until it truly reaches the 99%, almost all of us: workers, black folk, Latinos and Latinas, LGBTs, immigrants, Asians, artists, all of us, for we are integral parts of the 99%. I salute you and hope fervently that you will grow beyond number.
Though I speak to you today by proxy, I’m confident that you will hear my voice soon.
Here’s a tip for the do-it-yourself crowd: Go to your computer’s Start menu, and either go to “run” or just search for “cmd.” Open it up, and type in “ping [website address],” like so:
Once you have the IP for a website, all you really need to do is enter it like you would a normal URL and hit enter/press go. Typing in “188.8.131.52” should bring you to the front page of AO3, for example, just as typing “184.108.40.206/dashboard” should bring you straight to your Tumblr dashboard. Since we’re obviously bracing for the worst case scenario which would involve you not being able to access Tumblr regularly, you should, like, save this list, I guess.
Hello! I was hoping you could help promote our protest against religious institutions interfering with politics to the detriment of the LGBT community. All the information can be found on our tumblr/facebook. It would be a great help if you could put the word out on your tumblr! Thanks!
> local PUBLIC law enforcement agencies distribute flyer on ‘domestic threats,’ to protect corrupt businesses from criticism
> local PUBLIC law enforcement agencies include in said flyer a warning that protesters might try to record and embarrass them (as if this is the police’s business)
> local PUBLIC law enforcement agencies denounce the ‘anti-capitalist profile’
The police are not the 99%. They are the armed watchdogs of privilege and convenience for the corporate and financial class. They are here to protect an ideology, and they freely acknowledge that in the flyer obtained by Occupy London.
City of London Police have sparked controversy by producing a brief in which the Occupy London movement is listed under domestic terrorism/extremism threats to City businesses.
Picture- Occupy LSX
The document was given to protesters at their “Bank of Ideas” base on Sun Street – a former site of financial corporation UBS. City police have stepped up an effort to quell the movement since they occupied the building on 18 November, with the document stating: “It is likely that activists aspire to identify other locations to occupy, especially those they identify with capitalism.
“Intelligence suggests that urban explorers are holding a discussion at the Sun Street squat. This may lead to an increase in urban exploration activity at abandoned or high profile sites in the capital.” The Occupy movement is listed alongside threats posed by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia (FARC), Al Qaeda and Belarusian terrorists.
The hidden infrastructure of the 2012 campaign has already been built.
A handful of so-called Super PACs, enabled to collect unlimited donations by the continued erosion of campaign finance regulations, are expected to rival the official campaign organizations in importance this election. In many cases, these groups are acting essentially as outside arms of the campaigns.
These are America’s best-funded political factions, their war chests filled by some of the richest men (and almost all are men) in the country.
More than 80 percent of giving to Super PACs so far has come from just 58 donors, according to the Center for Responsive Politics analysis of the latest data, which covers the first half of 2011. The Republican groups have raised $17.6 million and the Democratic groups $7.6 million. Those numbers will balloon, with American Crossroads, the main Republican Super PAC, aiming to raise $240 million.
We are the front-line workers who haul container rigs full of imported and exported goods to and from the docks and warehouses every day.
We have been elected by committees of our co-workers at the Ports of Los Angeles, Long Beach, Oakland, Seattle, Tacoma, New York and New Jersey to tell our collective story. We have accepted the honor to speak up for our brothers and sisters about our working conditions despite the risk of retaliation we face. One of us is a mother, the rest of us fathers. Between the five of us we have 11 children and one more baby on the way. We have a combined 46 years of experience driving cargo from our shores for America’s stores.
We are inspired that a non-violent democratic movement that insists on basic economic fairness is capturing the hearts and minds of so many working people. Thank you “99 Percenters” for hearing our call for justice. We are humbled and overwhelmed by recent attention. Normally we are invisible.
Today’s demonstrations will impact us. While we cannot officially speak for every worker who shares our occupation, we can use this opportunity to reveal what it’s like to walk a day in our shoes for the 110,000 of us in America whose job it is to be a port truck driver. It may be tempting for media to ask questions about whether we support a shutdown, but there are no easy answers. Instead, we ask you, are you willing to listen and learn why a one-word response is impossible?
“Occupy” protesters on the West Coast moved Monday to disrupt ports in Los Angeles, San Francisco and elsewhere.
The “Wall Street on the Waterfront” protests seem to have had more success in Oakland [than elsewhere]. KQED says that a crowd their reporter estimated to be 1,000 strong marched through the streets of West Oakland this morning. At the port, protesters were able to disrupt operations:
Caitlin Esch, who is at the port now, says at least three of the six gates at the port are effectively blocked, with nothing moving in or out as protesters clog up the entrances. Trucks are lined up, some trying to drop off, some trying to pick up.
Other ports targeted by Occupy protesters today include San Diego; Seattle, Tacoma, Washington, and Anchorage, Alaska.
Up to 50,000 people braved the cold and snow on Saturday to turn out for the largest ever protest against the rule of prime minister Vladimir Putin.
Bolotnaya Square, across the river from the Kremlin in central Moscow, was filled to overflowing with thousands standing shoulder-to-shoulder on the bridges and along the riverfront leading to the site. Tens of thousands of police and interior troops were deployed around the area, but protesters had been allowed by officials to gather in an unprecedented show of discontent.
Shouts of “Russia without Putin!” and “Freedom!” were mixed with demands that the Kremlin annul a disputed parliamentary election that saw Putin’s United Russia party gain nearly 50% of the vote despite widespread accusations of fraud.
"I demand new elections," said Maxim, 26, an economist. "If they don’t agree, we will continue to come out. The people have woken up – they see there’s a point to going out into the streets and expressing what they don’t agree with."
Opposition leader Vladimir Ryzhkov said a further protest would be held on Christmas eve if the Kremlin refused to cancel the election results. The overwhelmingly young crowd organised via social networking sites and exceeded early estimates of 30,000.
Activists at Occupy Wall Street have issued a call to thousands of protesters across the US to reoccupy outdoor public spaces to mark the movement’s three-month anniversary.
The Occupy movement has stalled in recent weeks after a wave of evictions swept away a raft of encampments, including the largest in Los Angeles, Philadelphia and New York. On Wednesday, it suffered a fresh blow as police in riot gear cleared Occupy San Francisco camp on the orders of the mayor, who had been sympathetic to protesters, while Occupy Boston lost legal protection against eviction.
Organisers said they hoped the call to reoccupy on the 17 December would galvanise and grow the movement.
Amin Husain, a press spokesman for OWS, said: “We know that occupation empowers people and eliminates fear. It permits individuals to assert themselves as political beings even although the system doesn’t represent them.” […]
In a piece published this week in the first issue of Tidal, a magazine published by the Occupy movement, Judith Butler, academic and feminist theorist at the University of California, Berkeley, spoke of its importance.
Butler said: “When bodies gather together as they do to express their indignation and to enact their plural existence in public space, they are also making broader demands. They are demanding to be recognised and to be valued; they are exercising a right to appear and to exercise freedom; they are calling for a liveable life.
"These values are presupposed by particular demands, but they also demand a more fundamental restructuring of our socio-economic and political order."
“Propaganda is to democracy what the bludgeon is to a totalitarian state.” ~ Noam Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent (1988)
Consider this rather dramatic contrast: when 300 liberals are arrested during an anti-Putin protest in faraway Moscow, the New York Times splashes the news onto its front page. But when 700 radicals are arrested in an anti-Wall Street rally in New York itself, the Times systematically ignores them, pushing the news onto its obscure ‘City Room Blog’.
The difference in framing between these two items is particularly remarkable. First of all, there’s the title: “Moscow Moves to Quell Second Day of Anti-Putin Protests.” Compare the laden term “to quell”, which implies an authoritarian type of crackdown, with the following matter-of-fact statement: “Police Arrest More Than 700 Protesters on Brooklyn Bridge.”
Then compare the introductory paragraphs of the two articles: “Russian authorities acted decisively to quash a second day of anti-government protests,” versus “In a tense showdown above the East River, the police arrested more than 700 demonstrators from the Occupy Wall Street protests who took to the roadway as they tried to cross the Brooklyn Bridge.”
This afternoon, at least 99 different groups of Americans outraged at income inequality and the lack of jobs are at the U.S. capitol, demanding that Members of Congress support jobs legislation. The action, called “Take Back The Capitol” is one of the few times that Members of Congress will be directly confronted by unemployed people.
About half an hour ago, a group of demonstrators entered Rep. Joe Walsh’s (R-IL) office. These protesters asked to meet with the congressman. The Chief of Staff, Justin Roth, said that Walsh was busy and could only meet with them later but offered to meet with the protesters himself. “I think we’ll stay,” said one protester. Roth shrugged and the protesters sat down and decided to occupy the office until Walsh arrives.
A remarkable thing happened several weeks ago in a small city in North Carolina. A group of Occupiers from Chapel Hill affiliated with the national movement, emboldened by similar actions by Occupiers in Oakland, California, reclaimed an old used car dealership that had sat vacant for years. The owner, a deadbeat who has been apparently at odds with city government for some time now, has kept the lot vacant and undeveloped for the better part of ten years. This large building and land, unoccupied and unused for a very long time, was converted to serve the interests of the people of Chapel Hill…
Of course, soon enough, the police decided to intervene in this ugly display of wanton public compassion and unity. That brought us photos of police dressed in full military fatigues and flak jackets, brandishing assault rifles, heading in to clear the building of the people who had attempted to give it a viable purpose to serve the community…
Through the occupation of both public and private abandoned space, the Occupy movement, as well as anti-capitalist political movements across the globe, are showing that they have the capability to escalate their tactics in a meaningful way. The reclamation of public space for political thought and dialogue is an important first step to breaking the bonds of capitalist hegemony in the sphere of public consciousness. This has been done in the past few months by brave Occupiers willing to risk arrest to get the public to pay attention to the issues staring them in the face. It has been proven to be a successful tactic, and should be continued. Now, an important next step is to carry the occupations to private space that can be converted to better use serving the wider needs of the community.
The drive to stop foreclosures and squat bank property marks a radical shift from the occupation of public space to the public repossession of private property.
The Occupy movement is racketing up the resistance. Inspired by the Spanish indignados, this Tuesday activists all over the United States will be taking the struggle indoors: to the homes of poor families who are under threat of being evicted by large and powerful Wall Street banks. The move from occupying public space to reclaiming private property marks a radical escalation of civil disobedience, striking the capitalist system right at its institutional heart.
On December 6, during a national day of action, the Occupy movement will mobilize activists in over 25 cities to “protest fraudulent lending practices, corrupt securitization, and illegal evictions by banks,” by physically halting the attempt to evict families from their homes and by occupying vacant bank-owned homes and donating them to those in need. As Occupy Wall St. reported, “the day of action marks a national kick-off for a new frontier for the movement.”
The action is partly inspired by the 15-M movement in Spain, which — through the Plataforma de Afectados por la Hypoteca, or the platform of those affected by their mortgage — has stopped hundreds of evictions in Spain and has occupied numerous large vacant buildings and offered them to people who had been kicked out of their homes by their banks. Locally, the action also builds on the groundbreaking activism of Take Back the Land.
“I’m so scared of this anti-Wall Street effort. I’m frightened to death.”
— GOP strategist Frank Luntz, quoted by Yahoo News, noting the Occupy Wall Street protests are “having an impact on what the American people think of capitalism.”
Know your enemy. Here are some Luntz GOP talking points about OWS:
What Luntz says in a list:
1. Don’t say ‘capitalism.’ 2. Don’t say that the government ‘taxes the rich.’ Instead, tell them that the government ‘takes from the rich.’ 3. Republicans should forget about winning the battle over the ‘middle class.’ Call them ‘hardworking taxpayers.’ 4. Don’t talk about ‘jobs.’ Talk about ‘careers.’ 5. Don’t say ‘government spending.’ 6. Don’t ever say you’re willing to ‘compromise.’ 7. The three most important words you can say to an Occupier: ‘I get it.’ “First off, here are three words for you all: ‘I get it.’ … ‘I get that you’re angry. I get that you’ve seen inequality. I get that you want to fix the system.” Then, he instructed, offer Republican solutions to the problem. 8. Out: ‘Entrepreneur.’ In: ‘Job creator.’ Use the phrases “small business owners” and “job creators” instead of “entrepreneurs” and “innovators.” 9. Don’t ever ask anyone to ‘sacrifice.’ 10. Always blame Washington.
The idea is what the GOP has been trying to do for the last forty years — trying to get the hard-working people to ignore the difference between themselves and the economic elite — basically that that elite is all-powerful and the rest of us are at their mercy.
GOP solutions are lower pay, less job security, more economic inequality, harsher discipline in the workplace, more rapid depletion of resources, and accelerated destruction of the environment on economic matters, and more deceit and entrenchment of power in politics.
Occupy Wall Street and their far-flung allies might as well give up on addressing their demands to the government, at least for the time being. The slogan ought to be something like “We’re tired of being pawned off on the help; from now on, we insist on dealing directly with the masters.”
And the plan should be to spend the next several months developing, articulating, and organizing toward a major national mortgage and student-loan strike. Such a loan strike would begin—provided enough people sign on in advance (and I’m talking hundreds of thousands), and unless a concrete set of intervening demands is squarely met in the meantime—on, say, October 1, 2012, right in the middle of the next presidential campaign…
The Occupy movement could enlist the advice of sympathetic economists and loan experts to craft the precise terms of the demand. In addition to the alleviation of tremendous amounts of individual and family anxiety and suffering, the more generalized goal of the reset—and incidentally, why is it that up till now in this crisis only the improvident banks and investment houses have been allowed to reset the terms of their deals, without any penalty, whereas none of the rest of us have been accorded similarly revivifying largesse?—would be to free up all sorts of spending money at the lower reaches of the economy where it might actually do some good.
Submission from acaskofbrando: Senate Votes To Let Military Detain Americans Indefinitely
This just came in regarding the un-American NDAA: “The Senate voted Tuesday to keep a controversial provision to let the military detain terrorism suspects on U.S. soil and hold them indefinitely without trial — prompting White House officials to reissue a veto threat. The measure, part of the massive National Defense Authorization Act, was also opposed by civil libertarians on the left and right. But 16 Democrats and an independent joined with Republicans to defeat an amendment by Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) that would have killed the provision, voting it down with 61 against, and 37 for it.”
Do yourselves a favor & take down the name of every single senator that voted in favor of it. With the pending passing of the bill, Section 1031 of S. 1253 would be one of those sections enacted, meaning it now be the first time in more than 60 years that our so-called representatives in Washington would openly allow indefinite detention of American citizens with no charges or trial without Congressional authorization. The loopholes under this section makes exploitation all but an absolute certainty, despite the ACLU’s claims that it would not apply to you or I.
Huffington Post cleverly ignores the worst sections of the text - those involving our own citizens, aside from “terrorist” detainees - but lists all those that voted. Pressure the White House to veto this un-American bill.
Police across the US have been criticised for their actions in clashes with Occupy Wall Street protesters. The man who led the police response to the Battle in Seattle protests at the 1999 WTO meeting blames the post-9/11 militarisation of American policing.
"Law enforcement across the country is pursuing the same tactics that failed so miserably in Seattle," Norm Stamper tells BBC World Service’s Witness programme.
"There’s a lack of patience, there’s a lack of imagination and there are clear over-reactions to the challenges the police perceive. It is all so disheartening."
In November 1999, Chief Stamper was one of the main officials charged with managing the huge numbers of demonstrators who brought the city to a standstill in protests against the launch of a new round of global trade talks…
Chief Stamper says he has learnt his lesson but that other US police forces have not. He blames what he calls the militarisation of the police in America.
In the years following 9/11, the federal government provided military equipment to police forces across the country and instilled in them a military mindset, all in the name of homeland security, the former police chief says.