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Monday, October 31, 2011

Bully Pulpit on Bull Connors or The Tactics of DeHumanization

(Moore, 2011)
If the hose fits....

When does the national conversation change? What is the trim tab that adds a new word to the general lexicon, one that was only being whispered in private. Is it a photo? A video? A speech?

In 1963, images printed in Life Magazine told the story. Systemic arrests and harassments by local officials in Birmingham, Alabama were nothing new, but self awareness is a hell of a thing. And now young people were starting to march led by a young preacher named Martin Luther King. Not yet a doctor but already a Reverend, he had a vision of change and a way of getting others to believe in that change. 

Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King
on the Mall (Lindo, 2011)
So peaceful clean cut kids, with intelligent messages and a need to have their voices heard, were protesting the Jim Crow state of affairs in the area. Birmingham and its Commissioner of Public Safety, Eugene "Bull" Connors, wasn't having any of that. There were laws enforcing segregation. On a hundred degree day, the simple relief of a swimming pool in a public park could not be enjoyed by people whose skin was considered too dark to be human. You want to swim to cool off now, $1.50 will take that 103 degree day in D.C. into a manageable zone at one of many public park pools.  In that summer of 1963 in Alabama, they were experiencing 110 degrees in the shade. It's not dry heat, it's not humid heat, it's some other kind of heat that beats down on you. A person of a pale complexion would have their neck turn bright red in that heat rather quick.

Walter Gadsden being attacked by dogs.
(Hudson, 2011)
So Bull and his buddies thought some bullying was in order. And they took out the hoses. And the dogs. DOGS. On a hot 110 degree day.

In 1968, 5 years later, they came again. Bunch of really smart kids calling themselves "Yippies" took over a park, wanted to the change the world, or at the very least, that national conversation. Just like they are now down on Wall Street in the not so bargain basement district of New York. They were getting together peacefully to listen to music and have a few free drugs and some free love back then. Oh yeah, and to protest outside the Democratic National Convention about the seemingly endless Vietnam War. That war lasted 19 years in all. Truth. It officially began on November 1955 and dragged on 19 years and 180 days. The people in THAT park from THAT time who were sick of war and calling for peace got hit with much worse then just hoses and dogs. Much, much worse. Like Bunker Hill worse. (Go to your local DVD rental portal and rent Chicago 10 to have all your questions on that one answered if you want to know more.)
(Hoffman, 2011)

So we've got kids hit with hoses in 63, and kids hit with hoses and batons and dogs and tear gas in 68, and the stories of the Bonus Army who camped in front of the White House only to be burned and beaten out of their makeshift village, and now we have Occupy. Only this time, its everywhere. When they try to close one location, there are literally hundreds of other cities still answering the call. And don't think the kids are just kids. We are talking all ages, married, single, homeless, with jobs, without jobs, but mostly engaged citizens that are extremely dedicated and heard the sirens call again. No one there has a sign about guns and no one there is threatening to come back with bullets next time. There are some of the most excited yet clear individuals racially spread out across the spectrum that we've ever met being well fed by constant donations and neighborhood support. Worldwide support sent with messages attached like, "We can't be with you, but we can send you a pizza. Bon appetite!" It's a beautiful thing.

OWS in shadow of Liberty Tower
(Lindo, 2011)
Our first night at Occupy Wall Street was spent huddled in one tent after another meeting people, listening to their stories of why they were there. Yesterday, was the first great elemental test of their metal as the slightly cold temperatures dropped and turned into a record breaking Noreaster for the month of October in the history of Octobers. Yesterday 3 inches coated everyone, but it did it sideways and came with wind and mixed with painful sleet type rain which kept up for like 20 hours. Today, if you want to walk down to Broadway and Cedar you won't find a trace of any snow storm at all. Nothing. Resilient protesters all. There must have been 300 people gathered in the General Assembly, another 30 or so watching the Open Mike area, a handful watching a film being projected onto a sheet in the rather large library area, and another hundred keeping warm in their tents, waiting in line for the free grub, or deep in discussion off in one corner or another. This is an active community of people who feel it is not only their right, but their duty to protest the gross man made distortions to our economic and ecological sustainability on this planet. A real pressure cooker for the bubbling up of solutions is being built and it's being patchworked together by Solutionaries from all over the U.S. with all sorts of backgrounds, all sorts of complaints and concerns. It's a revolution of thought and process. Because self awareness is a hellofa thing.

Occupy Wall Street (Lindo, 2011)
This time, the people have had some casualties already as well. The young marine, a veteran with a full time job in Oakland that had been sleeping with the protesters there at night to keep the peace, has had his skull fractured, by a canister launched from an officer while they were teargassing a milling crowd of thoughtful caring patriotic civilians. Will that be our trim tab? Will the video of his fall, or the explosion into the crowd that was trying to help him, also caught on video, make the statement that needs to be made about the right to freedom of assembly? Will the photos of those hit with rubber bullets and covered with welts open the eyes of the sleeping? There is an argument to be made the mission has already been accomplished.

This last week, Friday, Saturday there were reports on NPR and CNN et al saying that "the national debate has been fundamentally changed when talking about economic inequality." A "watershed" moment is right in front of us. That was coming from main stream news talking heads. This revolution, apparently, will be televised. Don't you just love history in the making? All power to the people and the policy they invent.

Lisa, The Policy Geek

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Muddy Waters

When you listen for a living, sometimes a talking point can hurt your ears. Lately, its been a forked tongue of talking points. On the one hand, Talking Heads saying that they don't understand the message of the OWS crowd (apparently, "Occupy" is too long a word to say on National television).

Coming out of one corner of the mouth of the coined is:
  • OWS has no message,
  • Their message could get hijacked so watch-out!,
  • We can't possibly see what they are saying,
  • They are so disorganized.

The other point of the fork says:
  • They are nobodies,
  • These people have no education (suddenly that's important),
  • They aren't people like you and me, 
  • Those are a bunch of disorganized religious zealots.
To that we say, "Hngh." We think the better angels of nature are speaking loudly and clearly.

 (RTNews, 2011)

More and more world citizens think OWS's purpose and reason de etra are so simple that even this 9 year old understands and can articulate the message of the protesters he is standing with.

Former Representative Alan Grayson also seems to clearly understand why people are mobilizing and speaking to each other peacefully while mediating, exchanging ideas, and working on solutions to our nation's ills. It's called democracy and it's a shame that some people don't recognize it when it's intelligently done with intent and care.

(Bill Maher Productions, 2011)
We could go on and on. And if you would like us to go on and on, shoot us an email at thepolicygeek@gmail.com or make a comment here below. 

We can tell by the views and the demographics that we have hits from all over the world. So thank you. And welcome. And feel free to share our links or check out the books. Some of the images allow you to read full chapters while checking them out, so...indulge.

Meanwhile we still think President Obama is headed for Term 2.  Remember he got Bin Laden? Please?! Besides who are we up against? Michelle Bachmann? There was the 7th or 8th or 6th Republican debate on tonight, so we do what we always do. Listen. Our favorite quote from this of what will be 20 debates total on that side??:  "He put us in Libya. He is now putting us in Africa."  made by Michelle Bachmann. This is a no brainer.

Be back soon,

Lisa, The Policy Geek
Twitter: @thepolicygeek

Sunday, October 16, 2011

It's A Good Thing

DC March For Sanity (Lindo, 2010)
Sometimes, in life, you are lucky enough to know it's time to take a stand. There are suddenly big clear choices and issues of justice at stake. And at those times, if you are VERY lucky, you can be part of history as well. You can boldly go where no one has gone before on a global level. You can seek out new forms of government, more representative of the People, give Gov a new life, and create a new definition of Civilization, of being a citizen of Earth.

(Lindo, 2011)
One of our friends calls the Occupiers horrible things and suggests violence against them, repeatedly.  (He) says I've 'drank the koolaid', tells me to 'fu@k off' for posting video of Occupy events (Sorry for the language, but we're just quoting here). We are talking informative, no comment videos, just people sharing. He says they are the 'lowest of the low', these people who attend Occupy Wall Street events, and that everyone in New York hates the protesters. He's honestly one of the smartest people we know, and yet, he thinks its just a huge anti-Israeli, anarchist movement that will end up destroying us all in the end. And even stranger, he lives on the Upper East Side. I'm just sayin'.
In the video below, Dr. Spence was answering the question, "Why are you here?" That's something that each of these people at these events seem to be pretty clear on. From "How my goin' pay my rent?" to "What rules will these camp outs live by?" every day is a clear and structured growth model for figuring out why these people are gathering.
 Dr. Lester Spence at Occupy Baltimore (Lindo, 2011)
Asst. Professor of Political Science, Africana Studies, Hopkins University
When you are a Policy Geek, it usually doesn't happen by accident. Usually you start out as some other type of geek, like a sports geek, or a stats geek, or a trekkie. And when that happens, and you combine that with the age of one who can remember a time without cell phones, or even cable, then every day now is a miracle. iTablets and wireless this and picture frames with video by the bed; twitter and Facebook and the very concept of Social Media is like living in Kubrick's 2001.  And now this, this worldwide instant communication series of events. In the utopia of Star Trek, direct democracy, freedom of speech, equality, fairness, justice, these were/are the ideals. Now, to see it in action, everywhere, real time, sharing, being, its very exciting. Its the energy of the world all going in the same direction. At least that's what we all hope it is. Perhaps its the potential power of the fringe that scares our FB friend. But this not-gonna-take-it-anymore crowd seems more focused on moving forward in the right direction, then letting the 1% steer the 99% even one more day.
So we are for this thing. This growing thing. And to our friend we say, "teach me, tell me. How could direct democracy fail?" 
Here's one anonymous quote from a protester at #OccupyDenver:  "Can't you be patriotic, support your nation's President and the troops and still be in the streets marching and occupying? Can't you love peace and cry out to end all the wars, knowing full well that we would still nation build? We are held to it by our Military Industrial Complex, after all. So we move to Africa, and we save lives and fight some real bad guys and help them replace real infrastructure. Africa will be the new frontier. And we know that money giant will be extremely hard to put on a diet so the Pentagon has to eat something. Since there are military offices in every county in the United States...that'll be harder to change, but isn't it patriotic just the same to want our troops to be home? Home and safe?"
(Lindo, 2011)
Admittedly, we can see no exit strategy, or pack out day ahead, and we suppose this is a weather permitting kind of thing. Nonetheless, you must appreciate how the Occupy movement is growing, its fine beginnings, and the quality of the people supporting the movement. And after careful research and intense outreach, twitter and YouTube hours, it appears to us as though thoughtful people all over the world in solutionary solidarity are standing up to Usury and Perfidy!! In fact, we're sure of it. The simple fact that they have free libraries set up at each encampment to share intelligent background on history and government and the state of our Congress today and the Constitution, et al says so much. Transparency at its most purist form. With all that, there are ridiculous fringe, what we would call 'out of the ballpark thinking' individuals there talking about conspiracies and the Fed and mind control, but by and large the distillation from each work group seems sane and well thought out.
What we mean to say is, if you really believe in Democracy, then you must believe in Democracy! right? And so you take a stand, FOR SOMETHING and not just against the GOP, but FOR justice, for ecological sustainability, and for intelligent solutionary debate on the economy and our futures as citizens of the world!!
If you have been paying attention you are daily correcting someone who thinks that Occupy Wall Street (OWS) doesn't have a message or that they are a bunch of kids or that the press isn't covering it. Those are all false concepts. The meme was planned for several months leading up to the Global Day of Action yesterday. 
(Lindo, 2011)
We've been to the one in Baltimore and took video and photos, also NY, DC, and they are talking about alternative currencies, like the Baltimore Buck (kind of like a Disney dollar, honored by 126 stores in Baltimore) in an effort to take money out of the system. They supported the idea of taking money out of commercial banks and putting your money in credit unions. They talk about creating legislation to protect the consumer, like what the Consumer Protection Agency is supposed to do but is instead being blocked by the GOP. 

Now that all these fights are happening openly, with respectful debate, we must also think about the 2012 elections. The more people we hear from, the clearer it is that President Obama needs to be reelected with as many Democrats as we can cram into 2012. Not arguing, just saying on that level, moving forward, he's gotta be your guy. As a Progressive. If you don't think so, then you might as well stop reading now, because we definitely are not going to see eye to eye over the months ahead.

(CBS, 2011)
DC's Miles Maestas says, "It easy to label people and wage partisan and ideological warfare. It's easy to do that. What's hard is to bridge differences and ask people to be better citizens. This is what's asked of us -- to be engaged, caring and active citizens right now. If you're already doing all you can, great. You're the perfect candidate to teach others how you do what you do. Get a view of the big picture and be responsible for painting a part of it. Thanks for participating in this big, ongoing responsibility of self-governance."

George Lakoff says, "The basic idea is this: Democracy is based on empathy, that is, on citizens caring about each other and acting on that care, taking responsibility not just for themselves but for their families, communities, and their nation. The role of government is to carry out this principle in two ways: protection and empowerment."  To read more about Mr. Lakoff's work: http://georgelakoff.com/2011/04/17/obama-returns-to-his-moral-vision-democrats-read-carefully/ Lots of his books are listed and available through that link as well. 
Consensus (Occupy Wall Street, 2011)
They/We talk about getting out the vote and one fascinating democratic vote after another, with all concerns heard and voiced before voting. Its just beautiful. This many people getting involved and caring about our nation's future. This blog, for one, will not be found writing about how they are failing just yet. And the above video is a really well shot and edited look into the birth of this movement from its Ground Zero (excuse the expression).

(CBS, 2011)

Its growing, its popular, and people who know how to build a society from the ground up are participating in the discussions. Educators, union members, city councils all voting to support these actions. It's a good thing. It's a very good thing. It will be a New Republic, if we can keep it.

And since they don't seem to be going home just yet, looks like I'll be here typing. And carving pumpkins.

Lisa, The Policy Geek

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A Horse Of A Different Color

So it would seem the race is now officially on. President Obama, commonly known as POTUS (President Of The United States, for the less literary savvy), has decided that bipartisan is no longer the way to go. He's making visits to the opposition's back yards, and bridges, and holding vigil during his Create Jobs tour right in front of their most needy infrastructure spots.

This Policy Geek traveled all over the country over the last two and a half years, and saw many a shovel ready construction site being shoveled. I mean everywhere. With big signs telling you they were stimulus projects. The Republicans generally didn't like the signs.

There was also lots of talk of (R) Governors lining up to refuse their portion of the stimulus funds as they became available. And now, now that POTUS is pushing for more infrastructure work to be put into action, the GOP says they never saw any fixin' of any roads being done by anyone over the last two and a half years and; therefore, if we passed an infrastructure Jobs Bill now, nothing would come of it. So odd. And then they filibuster, and vote it down for debate.

Usually, these are the guys who love them some construction money, and love passing it out to supporters they've befriended along the way, bid or no bid. Not this time. This time Rove and friends decided that it would be best if everything the United States Government votes to do, should be blocked. Period. Or left as unfunded mandates. Or non-approved appointments. Until this Democratic President is no longer in the Oval Office. That's the goal. The numero uno goal. In fact, if no votes passed at all, that would be fine with them. Unless it was to ban abortion, or remove civil rights, or as Perry just rewrote it, "take back the country like we did in our revolution of the 16th Century." Not sure what country he was talking about, but I'm pretty sure he was like 200 years off for the good 'ol U.S. of A.

But history and integrity and honesty have not been this part of this season's republican lexicon.  Oh, hell no!  It's tax cuts and godless liberals and invisible racism and wealthy treason talkers. That's what the GOP is putting up as their best and brightest. Oy.

So what R we gonna do about this Jobs Bill?  Here's the latest from the White House: "
Last night, the American Jobs Act was filibustered by Senate Republicans. There was no vote on the actual bill. But it would have succeeded: the American Jobs Act has at least 51 votes -- a clear majority -- to pass the Senate. And a new poll shows that 63 percent of Americans support it, too. Today the President recorded a message he wants you to see, laying out where we go from here in the fight for jobs.

Watch President Obama's video -- and pass it on to anyone you think should see it. 

"I've got news for them. Not this time. Not with so many Americans out of work.  I will not take no for an answer.  Force them to vote!!" ~ President Barack Obama

Bachmann is suggesting no taxes. Cain is suggesting a flat tax. They all want more military spending. We have to change this, but it is up to us. Now, we need to push even harder. Our voices make a difference.  They really do. Call, write a letter, or send an e-mail. Don't give up. We need to put people back to work, and create an America the rest of the world wants to do business in.

Lisa Lindo
The Policy Geek

Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Revolution Should Not Be PhotoShopped

(Adam Nelson, 2011)
One thing we know for sure.  
The picture above, of Charlie Chaplin and Errol Flynn wasn't PhotoShopped. Those people were there, with hats in hand, waving and cheering. It's a different day down at Wall Street now, especially in Zuccotti Park, formerly called Liberty Plaza Park.

(Wikimedia.org, 2011)
Here's a cool picture taken by the even cooler David Shankbone, another self proclaimed observer of life, who has 'driven motorcycles across Cuba and Portugal, camped in the Amazon, skydived over Italy, lost himself in Morocco and found himself in the Negev.' He goes around taking free use photos for Wikipedia.  This is one from September 17th, when things were just getting going in the moneyed districts of NYC. One interesting 21st century adaptation that took place to deal with the Big Apple's regulations, in lieu of a sound system, announcements are made and then repeated by the crowd, using the power of many to broadcast their messages without violating any sound ordinances. Ignore them, but they wil not go away.

Protesters Shut Down NYPD Precinct
It's a different day down at Wall Street now. Back when Chaplin climbed Errol to get a better look, there were happy faces all around. I have Manhattanite friends who have been down checking things out these last two weeks, tweeting, and well, some of what's coming out of there isn't what it seems to be. Most of what you hear IS true. People ARE chanting, cops HAVE been acting badly, cameras HAVE been destroyed, people HAVE been arrested, but mostly it's peaceful all the way around, and people are staying there, and staying put. 

Some of the protesters are trying to morph the "Occupation Of Wall Street" into something a little more reckless. Unfortunately, some aren't playing by all sorts of rules. They have agendas and complaints, but don't want to work within any system, especially when fighting a system that doesn't believe in rules. Throughout history Corporations have prefered to have the fewest rules imposed on them as possible (secretly the GOP are a bunch of Liberttarians if you ask me). So these natives are little more restless. These nonOccupation civil disobediants are mucking things up, but bringing attention to the cause nonetheless. Let's start with their propaganda problems. Here's their twitpic going around with the following messsage: "Think #OccupyWallStreet is only a few hunderd people? Check this pic out!" 
"Think #OccupyWallStreet is only a few hunderd people?"
As you can see it looks like a nice healthy crowd, and that maybe a couple of cabs and some other cars had gotten trapped in the masses. Interestingly, the reports I'm getting of 2500 - 3000 bodies on Friday would look like a lot fewer people, especially since much of them are under those trees. 2500 is nothing to sniff at. So let's check with reality. Here's the Google Earth Shot. And the actual link, just in case:  http://www.google.com/maps?ll=40.712899%2C-74.007667&spn=0.002082%2C0.005284&t=k&z=18&vpsrc=6
(better you know you are actually on google maps)

Notice the same cars? Same cars turning? So we have two photos, same cars, one with lots of people, one with much fewer people. Like a Google Earth shot was lifted and PhotoShopped. Now we can at least deal with some facts. When people do things like this, they sort of devalue the work that OccupyWallSt.org is trying to do. Not too sure what to make of that, but it is what it is, and that is a growing group of real people protesting in real time about real issues.

(OccupyNOLA,org, 2011)
American Citizens (and worldwide citizens of Earth) are PEACEFULLY ASSEMBLING to bring attention to those who, in full deception mode, have affected the economies of the entire world! Perfidy has continued to go unpunished, and now human beings everywhere, in solidarity, all over the planet, are going to point a metaphorical finger at those who do not act in the best interest of the average Citizen. Shining a verbal spotlight on those indictable predators who schedule a game, make a side bet that they will lose, use fake chips, have cards up their sleeves, and then take a dive for the money. In the old days, they called that The Sting and you could be hung for it. What the media is starting to understand is that this thing is not just happening down at Wall Street, and it is not about Occupying the Park Formerly Known As Liberty. It’s about 'player recognizin' player'; and it's going to happen in Madrid, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Athens, Sydney, Kansas City, Algiers, Tokyo, Amsterdam, London, and maybe even on The Brooklyn Bridge.

Nowadays you try to walk across a bridge (closely protected, of course, against acts of terrorism) and they'll arrest you (see video from You Tube). Not everyone likes to follow the sound ordinances; and some people like to play in traffic, so today, they arrested 700 American Citizens who did just that on The Brooklyn Bridge. Just bang some drums, and perhaps shut down a lane of traffic for a few hours of dancing, and "booooo!" they'll come arrest you. Even FOX News broke down and reported on what was going on, so let's put a rest to the "no news is covering this" meme, shall we? 

In fact, New York City police say about 700 protesters have been arrested after they swarmed the Brooklyn Bridge and shut down traffic TODAY. This offshoot from the financial district protest orchestrated an impromptu trek to Brooklyn this evening. "They walked in thick rows on the sidewalk up to the bridge, where some demonstrators spilled onto the roadway. Most of those arrested face disorderly conduct charges, while others were accused of resisting arrest after being told to stay on the pedestrian pathway" says an NYPD spokesman.

Interestingly enough, The New York Transit Workers Union (TWU) voted to support the Wall Street Protesters at their meeting Wednesday night. A member of TWU Local 100 told a reporter that they planned to join the protest this last Friday. The Union has 114 autonomous locals representing over 200,000 members and retirees in 22 states around the country. And it's numbers like that that have caused the GOP to try to dissolve them. Unions back Dems, and there'll be no more of that. Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/a-massive-union-just-voted-to-side-with-the-wall-street-protesters-2011-9#ixzz1ZNr9x6HF

(OccupyWallSt.org, 2011)
Occupy Wall Street has been picking up some decent support from other unions in the past few days. Wednesday we reported that the Teamsters Union declared their support for protesters.
Washington Current Reports: After more than a two weeks of protests in New York against major financial institutions and the role they played in the 2008 financial crisis and subsequent economic meltdown, more than 1,000 people were in Boston yesterday to march on the headquarters of Bank of America headquarters. The action in Boston was organized by The New Bottom Line, a nationwide coalition of 1,000 faith-based and community organizations that also seeks to hold Wall Street accountable. Link: http://www.thewashingtoncurrent.com/2011/09/wall-street-protesters-to-move-on-to.html

(Adam Nelson, 2011)
Per Daily Kos today, here is their first official list of demands:
Declaration of the Occupation of New York City As we gather together in solidarity to express a feeling of mass injustice, we must not lose sight of what brought us together. We write so that all people who feel wronged by the corporate forces of the world can know that we are your allies. As one people, united, we acknowledge the reality: that the future of the human race requires the cooperation of its members; that our system must protect our rights, and upon corruption of that system, it is up to the individuals to protect their own rights, and those of their neighbors; that a democratic government derives its just power from the people, but corporations do not seek consent to extract wealth from the people and the Earth; and that no true democracy is attainable when the process is determined by economic power. We come to you at a time when corporations, which place profit over people, self-interest over justice, and oppression over equality, run our governments. We have peaceably assembled here, as is our right, to let these facts be known.
  • They have taken our houses through an illegal foreclosure process, despite not having the original mortgage.
  • They have taken bailouts from taxpayers with impunity, and continue to give Executives exorbitant bonuses.
  • They have perpetuated inequality and discrimination in the workplace based on age, the color of one’s skin, sex, gender identity and sexual orientation.
  • They have poisoned the food supply through negligence, and undermined the farming system through monopolization.
  • They have profited off of the torture, confinement, and cruel treatment of countless nonhuman animals, and actively hide these practices.
  • They have continuously sought to strip employees of the right to negotiate for better pay and safer working conditions.
  • They have held students hostage with tens of thousands of dollars of debt on education, which is itself a human right.
  • They have consistently outsourced labor and used that outsourcing as leverage to cut workers’ health care and pay.
  • They have influenced the courts to achieve the same rights as people, with none of the culpability or responsibility.
  • They have spent millions of dollars on legal teams that look for ways to get them out of contracts in regards to health insurance.
  • They have sold our privacy as a commodity.
  • They have used the military and police force to prevent freedom of the press.
  • They have deliberately declined to recall faulty products endangering lives in pursuit of profit.
  • They determine economic policy, despite the catastrophic failures their policies have produced and continue to produce.
  • They have donated large sums of money to politicians supposed to be regulating them.
  • They continue to block alternate forms of energy to keep us dependent on oil.
  • They continue to block generic forms of medicine that could save people’s lives in order to protect investments that have already turned a substantive profit.
  • They have purposely covered up oil spills, accidents, faulty bookkeeping, and inactive ingredients in pursuit of profit.
  • They purposefully keep people misinformed and fearful through their control of the media.
  • They have accepted private contracts to murder prisoners even when presented with serious doubts about their guilt.
  • They have perpetuated colonialism at home and abroad.
  • They have participated in the torture and murder of innocent civilians overseas.
  • They continue to create weapons of mass destruction in order to receive government contracts.*
To the people of the world, We, the New York City General Assembly occupying Wall Street in Liberty Square, urge you to assert your power. Exercise your right to peaceably assemble; occupy public space; create a process to address the problems we face, and generate solutions accessible to everyone. To all communities that take action and form groups in the spirit of direct democracy, we offer support, documentation, and all of the resources at our disposal. Join us and make your voices heard! *These grievances are not all-inclusive.
Talking Points Memo has reported "that many of the events around the globe are being coordinated and listed by the website Occupy Together, which says that its creators were inspired by the Occupy Wall Street events and wanted to create a “hub for all of the events springing up across the country in solidarity” with the movement. And in a merging of technologies old and new, infamous poignant prankster duo “The Yes Men,” previously best-known for posing as representatives from such companies as ExxonMobil and government agencies including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to critique their actions, launched a project on Kickstarter to raise money to publish an Occupy Wall Street Journal newspaper. The print-run is set for 50,000 copies for its inaugural issue. At the time of this posting, the project has already surpassed its requested $12,000 donations goal by about $5,000, and there are still nine days left to donate to the project."

Now, if anyone tells you that the people down on Wall Street are a bunch of disorganized homeless kids about to go home anyway, you can tell them that a little Policy Geek filled you in on the whole thing, and you don't think it's going anywhere anytime soon.  Who knows? All that seems to be abundantly obvious, is that at this rate we're gonna have to make a whole lot more popcorn.

Check back soon for more updates.

10/12/2011 ~ Bloomberg has given his blessing for the demonstrators to be in NY for as long as they like. Peaceful movements just get me every time. ;-) Interested in more? Drive by a meetup near you and get first hand glimpses at history. A world movement, in real time. www.occupytogether.org If this page stays current, you can check out how many occupiers there are at each site updated live here: http://www.meetup.com/occupytogether

Lisa Lindo