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OWS Open Thread

Occupiers back in Zucotti Park:

* * *

Things moving too fast right now! It seems that whoever OWS's face lawyers are, they've gotten Zucotti Park opened up. There seem to be various re-assemblies, especially at Foley Park. There are marches. And lots and lots of New Yorkers are pissed. So, I set the twitter block to #ows, so that's about as live as it gets. Readers, if you want to curate some tweets in comments, here's how:

(This is not hard, once you get the trick of it.DCBlogger does this, Affinis does this, I do this....)

1. Right- or CTRL-Click on the tweet's timestamp (like, "5 minute ago") to copy the URL (like any other URL).

2. Paste the URL into your comment.

3. If the URL looks like this:!/garonsen/status/136072501238312960

remove the #! to it looks like this:

4. Set the Input Format for the comment to Full HTML.

5. Submit the comment as usual.

No votes yet


affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

Despite the restraining order (that specifically includes Brookfield Properties as a named defendant), they're trying to use various ploys/excuses to keep people out of Zuccotti.

NY Times
However, after people had been in the park for about 10 mins, security guards working for Brookfield Properties announced that everyone had to leave. Some inside the park said that the guards pointed to an electrical wire lying on the ground and announced that there was a "maintenance issue."
Sam Wilson, 32, from Bedford Stuyvesant, said she had been welcomed into the park at first and then was told to leave by a man wearing a suit, who she said told her that there was a "suspicious package" inside the park. As those inside the park, including several news photographers, exited onto sidewalk, officers told them to start moving, warning that they were blocking pedestrians.

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

8:45 Just watched Bloomberg presser. Amazing: said he had ordered park re-opened, but now--after judge ruled eviction was improper--he has ordered it closed as need to "clarify" ruling. So people marching there now expecting it to be open in for disturbing surprise.... Mayor claimed no injuries to protesters except those who "banged" themselves on the media kept away or their own safety... Will be checking people who come to Zuccotti to prevent tents etc.

coyotecreek's picture
Submitted by coyotecreek on

Those crazy Occupiers - all they do is run around all day banging themselves on the ground.

I am so mad I'm spitting nails.

coyotecreek's picture
Submitted by coyotecreek on

Occupy the London Stock Exchange
?3 PM at the US Embassy, in Solidarity with Occupy Wall Street -

We will gather with Americans at the US Embassy as they demand entry to question their Ambassador why the US will condemn repression of peaceful protest in Egypt and Syria while the NYPD, Oakland PD, Denver, PD, and others beat and gas peaceful protesters in the US to suppress dissent.

Submitted by MontanaMaven on

This morning was filled with the usual crap which is why I don't listen. Yes, they were quoting Glen Beck on the wisdom of Frederick Hayek. But to be fair and balanced, tomorrow will be on Keynes.
But I kept listening because I thought I should find out their take on the raid of Zuccotti Park. The "reporter", Margo Adler, was actually giggling at the protesters attempts to get back into the park. She was "surprised" at how upbeat they were. She was "shocked"when a protester said " The genie is out of the bottle. This action doesn't matter." She's awful.

Is NPR watch the best or only watchdog on corporate radio? I find NPR as dangerous as Fox. Sirius Left now has on Media Matters but they are only about Fox bashing. I suppose I should call in when they are on and challenge them about NPR.

editor_u's picture
Submitted by editor_u on

"Is NPR watch the best or only watchdog on corporate radio?"

NPR Check is Matthew Murrey's (MYTWORDS) blog. Until recently he frequently cross-posted here at Corrente.

Posts are excellent, but infrequent, though there are two new items from this past Sunday. There is always an open thread (called Q Tips) where readers can report NPR atrocities.

At one time, at least five or six years ago, I thought I saw a blog called "I Hate NPR." I recall some good stuff there, but can't find any trace of it now (honestly, though, I haven't tried very hard).

There is/was an NPR Watch blog on Blogger, but it appears to have had only one post back in 2003. It was complaining of NPR bias against Israel in its reporting on a particular targeted assassination attempt. Obviously THAT never happened again.

I just found another NPR Watch (on Wordpress) with only a page of entries, all from 2006. Its tone and subject matter suggest it is not related to the other NPR Watch.

Submitted by MontanaMaven on

It 's good but sporadic. We should led him a hand somehow or encourage him to post here and help him out. I heard a caller to the Thom Hartmann show call in who was also livid about NPR.

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

From Greg Mitchell blog

"Meanwhile, in radio interview,Oakland Mayor Quan said she was on conference call w/ 18 other mayors with OWS problems a couple of days ago but unclear if the call was to coordinate crackdowns."

coyotecreek's picture
Submitted by coyotecreek on

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said.

"We have an obligation to enforce the laws today, to make sure that everybody has access to the park so everybody can protest. That's the First Amendment and it's number one on our minds," he said. "We also have a similar, just as important obligation to protect the health and safety of the people in the park."

Bloomberg is in contempt of court and should be arrested.

Submitted by jcasey on

Occupy and anarchism's gift of democracy

Most Americans are, politically, deeply conflicted. They tend to combine a deep reverence for freedom with a carefully inculcated, but nonetheless real identification with the army and police. Few are actual anarchists; few even know what "anarchism" means. It is not clear how many would ultimately wish to discard the state and capitalism entirely.

But one thing overwhelming numbers of Americans do feel is that something is terribly wrong with their country, that its key institutions are controlled by an arrogant elite, that radical change of some kind is long since overdue. They're right. It's hard to imagine a political system so systematically corrupt – one where bribery, on every level, has been made completely legal. The outrage is appropriate. The problem was, up until 17 September, the only side of the spectrum willing to propose radical solutions of any sort was the right. But Occupy Wall Street has changed that: democracy has broken out.

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

NY Times, reporting on events at Trinity-owned lot:
"At least four journalists, including a reporter and a photographer from The Associated Press, a reporter from The Daily News and a photographer from DNAInfo, were led out in plastic handcuffs."

[These were events at a lot owned by Trinity Church. Trinity clergy have been supportive of OWS. OWS began negotiating with them about temporary use of a lot they owned. Rumors (incorrect, but stated as fact) started to spread widely via Twitter that Trinity had invited protesters to occupy the lot, and people gathered there. Two guys dressed in black with black bandanas used bolt cutters to cut the locks and people entered to occupy. Then police came in and arrested them.]

Submitted by MontanaMaven on

Amy got in where MSM were held back. She always manages to get in. Probably because she doesn't have a big van just a cameraman. Amazing footage. Then Arundhati Roy interview. Democracy Now at Zucotti Park.

We shall find out whether we are a "nation of laws" or not. Every lawyer should come down to Zucotti park in three piece suits and march like they did in Pakistan and like they should have after Bush v. Gore when the coup took place.

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

Full text of ruling.

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

Number is now at seven. Six were carrying NYPD accreditation passes and one had a UN accreditation pass. List here - scroll to 2:58 PM update.

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

In addition to the list at the Guardian, there's Doug Higginbotham.

See here.
Doug Higginbotham, a freelance video journalist working for TV New Zealand, said he was arrested late Tuesday morning after protesters tried to re-enter Zuccotti Park. Higginbotham said he was standing on top of a phone booth to film and was told to get down. "The police just pulled me off, put me in handcuffs, slapped me against the truck. They took my press ID off me," said Higginbotham, who has worked a decade in New York.

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

See here:

They can take away the tarps and the tents. But they can’t slow down the Occupy Wall Street movement.

There have been police raids on Occupy Wall Street in Oakland, Calif.; Portland, Ore.; Denver; Albany, N.Y.; Burlington, Vt.; and Chapel Hill, N.C. — and now, last night in New York’s Zuccotti Park — orchestrated by politicians acting on behalf of the 1%.

But the 99% is undaunted. Occupy Wall Street’s message already has created a new day. This movement has created a seismic shift in our national debate — from austerity and cuts to jobs, inequality and our broken economic system.

Show your solidarity by attending a Nov. 17 bridge action near you.

And send a message of solidarity to the Occupy Wall Street protesters — which will be delivered by Working America this week.

The Occupy Wall Street movement has been committed to peaceful, nonviolent action from its inception. And it will keep spreading no matter what elected officials tell police to do. But that doesn’t mean these raids are acceptable. In fact, they are inexcusable.

As former Secretary of State Colin Powell put it, these protests are “as American as apple pie.” Americans must be allowed to speak out against pervasive inequality, even if the truth discomfits the 1%...

We are the 99%.

In Solidarity,
Richard L. Trumka
President, AFL-CIO

Submitted by lefttown on

A scant two months ago, Trumka said the AFL-CIO will endorse Obama and "Obama is a friend." He has said he spoke with Obama every day.
Trumka should be taken with a grain of salt. As Chris Hedges wrote:

The faux liberal reformers, whose abject failure to stand up for the rights of the poor and the working class, have signed on to this movement because they fear becoming irrelevant. Union leaders, who pull down salaries five times that of the rank and file as they bargain away rights and benefits, know the foundations are shaking.

It's good that the AFL-CIO members are protesting, but Trumka himself isn't trustworthy. Next year, he'll be exhorting labor to knock on doors for Obama, using the old lesser-of-two-evils tactic.

Jeff W's picture
Submitted by Jeff W on

appears to be this:

To the extent that City law prohibits the erection of structures, the use of gas or other combustible materials, and the accumulation of garbage and human waste in public places, enforcement ofthe law and the owner's rules appears reasonable to permit the owner to maintain its space in a hygienic, safe, and lawful condition, and to prevent it from being liable by the City or others for violations of law, or in tort It also permits public access by those who live and work in the area who are the intended beneficiaries of this zoning bonus.

The movants have not demonstrated that they have a First Amendment right to remain in Zuccotti Park, along with their tents, structures, generators, and other installations to the exclusion of the owner's reasonable rights and duties to maintain Zuccotti Park, or to the rights to public access of others who might wish to use the space safely. Neither have the applicants shown a rightto a temporary restraining order that would restrict the City's enforcement of law so as to promote public health and safety.

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

The ruling is based on the allowability of "reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions" to freedom of expression. That's exactly what they usually rely on to squash free speech rights (unless it's for a corporation). Same basis that's been given for the new rules not permitting signs in the Wisconsin Capitol building.

coyotecreek's picture
Submitted by coyotecreek on

I was actually trying to figure out how four Occupiers could lean on each other (one each on the side of a square) - and therefore, not be laying down - and be dressed in sleeping garb. Two could sit on a bench and lean back to back wearing these!

This is terrific. Kind of like bicycle generators!

affinis's picture
Submitted by affinis on

Three weeks ago, Chicago police evicted and arrested supporters of Occupy Chicago in Grant Park for the second time....Occupy Chicago decided not to pursue a permanent encampment downtown. Instead, they continued to maintain a 24-hour presence at the intersection of Jackson and LaSalle and worked to strengthen their outreach into the community.
[At OWS GA Tuesday night, someone raised possibility of occupying Zuccotti in shifts.]

unburdened by the logistics of operating and defending an encampment, Occupy Chicago is blossoming with successful acts of outreach, education, and direct action.

ChePasa's picture
Submitted by ChePasa on

This seems to be a favored option where Authority is bearing down on the demonstrators.

What I kept hearing last night on Tim Pool's excellent Ustream from Liberty/Zuccotti Plaza was that the loss of all that "stuff" OWS had been accumulating at the Park these past few months was actually liberating -- with the exception of the loss of the library, which apparently was restored almost immediately after access to the Park was restored.

In a literal and metaphorical sense, Pool liberated himself from "stuff" while on duty yesterday and last night. He lost his tent and whatever possessions he had in the Park, but while he was streaming video, he needed batteries and such. Justin Wedes gave him his laptop and his (very heavy) bag of accouterments. The saga of Tim carrying this heavy load around all night and into the next day and night while trying to find Justin (rumor had it, he'd been arrested) became a big part of the overall story of the eviction and its aftermath. Tim could not find Justin, and nobody he asked knew for certain what had happened to Justin. Tim could not carry the bag any more. He sat down, exhausted and frustrated.

Finally, he found one of Justin's friends. She didn't know where Justin was; they tried calling him with no luck, but she said she would take the burden of The Bag and make sure he got it back.

The relief Tim expressed at not having to lug around this heavy bag any more was extraordinary, and it was at that point a metaphor for the "liberation" of the OWS Movement from all the baggage it had been accumulating and carrying for months.

Tim had been streaming video and carrying that bag around for 17 hours before he was able to free himself from the heavier load. For the next two hours or so, he was re-energized, constantly on the move, in and around the Park, interviewing people, being praised for his work, being handed oranges and bottles of water (he said he had enough oranges!), and doing his best to communicate the real sense of liberation he felt and the celebratory spirit at the Plaza.

This is website. People were suggesting last night Tim should get a Pulitzer for all of his documentary efforts. Better would be for the Movement to find ways to honor its own. For the time being, I don't think Tim and his colleagues would mind some financial help. There are links at the site to some of the video he captured yesterday.

unburdened by the logistics of operating and defending an encampment, Occupy Chicago is blossoming with successful acts of outreach, education, and direct action.

Holding some kind of ground is essential for the Occupy Movement, but it's possible the intentional communities that the activists are envisioning and implementing don't require set locations. The demonstrations that have been taking place in seized and held public spaces can happen almost anywhere. The more of them there are, ultimately the better.

Adbusters Tactical Briefing #18 makes the point that there are strategic choices:

STRATEGY #1: We summon our strength, grit our teeth and hang in there through winter … heroically we sleep in the snow … we impress the world with our determination and guts … and when the cops come, we put our bodies on the line and resist them nonviolently with everything we've got.

STRATEGY #2: We declare "victory" and throw a party … a festival … a potlatch … a jubilee … a grand gesture to celebrate, commemorate, rejoice in how far we've come, the comrades we've made, the glorious days ahead. Imagine, on a Saturday yet to be announced, perhaps our movement's three month anniversary on December 17, in every #OCCUPY in the world, we reclaim the streets for a weekend of triumphant hilarity and joyous revelry.

We dance like we've never danced before and invite the world to join us.

Then we clean up, scale back and most of us go indoors while the die-hards hold the camps. We use the winter to brainstorm, network, build momentum so that we may emerge rejuvenated with fresh tactics, philosophies, and a myriad projects ready to rumble next Spring.

Whatever we do, let's keep our revolutionary spirit alive … let's never stop living without dead time.

Personally, I think there will be episodes of both.

And always: Dancing!

Submitted by lambert on

within reason, of course. (Though I think it's important to replace the meme that the Occupations are not clean with the meme that the Occupations are self-organizing. The library, the kitchen, the media center, the medical tent were all self-organized and moreover designed to help people.)

As for virtual occupations, I took the same position as Ad Busters #2 the last time that Zuccotti Square got invaded, and I was wrong. In the Manhattan context, it was important to hold that space. Maybe that's not true in Chicago. Detailed reporting from the ground would explain.

I think, in general, the "light" occupiers can spread and split the "heavy" police forces if and only if all walks of life can participate. A militarized police force can cope with Manhattan. It would find it harder to cope with Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx. It would find it even harder to cope with Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx .... Iowa City, Keokuk, Bangor, Portland, Manchester.... If we scale to the continent, we win. Granted, for some definition of win.