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Ear to the Ground

Hundreds of ‘Occupy’ Protesters Arrested on Brooklyn Bridge

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Posted on Oct 1, 2011
Flickr / _PaulS_ (CC-BY-SA)

Top-ranked New York police commanders helped arrest more than 700 Occupy Wall Street protesters Saturday when demonstrators left the sidewalks during a march and tried to cross the Brooklyn Bridge on the street, blocking traffic.

The arrests began just after 4 p.m. as the 1,500-strong demonstration made it about a third of the way across the bridge. Police brought out orange nets and surrounded the protesters, then later took them by bus to nearby police stations. The arrests were made relatively peacefully, and police said most of those taken into custody were charged with disorderly conduct.

Many protesters said they felt they had been tricked and trapped by the white-shirted police officers, who appeared to have allowed them onto the bridge roadway and even seemed to escort them across. —BF

The New York Times:

In their march north from Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan — headquarters for the last two weeks of a protest movement against what demonstrators call inequities in the economic system — they had stayed on the sidewalks, forming a long column of humanity penned in by officers on scooters.

Where the entrance to the bridge narrowed their path, some marchers, including organizers, stuck to the generally agreed-upon route and headed up onto the wooden walkway that runs between and about 15 feet above the bridge’s traffic lanes.

But about 20 others headed for the Brooklyn-bound roadway, said Christopher T. Dunn of the New York Civil Liberties Union, who accompanied the march. Some of them chanted “take the bridge.” They were met by a handful of high-level police supervisors, who blocked the way and announced repeatedly through bullhorns that the marchers were blocking the roadway and that if they continued to do so, they would be subject to arrest.

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By diamond, October 3, 2011 at 3:34 pm Link to this comment

“The government makes the laws and regulations that govern the people and corporations.”

Really? Read a history book. The corporations have been running America, making its laws and deciding which country to invade since at least 1890. If you don’t know that, you don’t know much. Many of America’s invasions and occupations were done at the behest of the corporations, to break strikes, for example or to put down dangerous outbreaks of democracy in countries the corporations wanted to ‘own’ so they could exploit their resources and enslave their people. And, of course, it continues to this day in Iraq and Afghanistan, but it started a long time ago.


“Turkish newspaper urges that the United States be listed in Guinness Book of World Records as the Country with the Most Foreign Interventions.

COUNTRY OR STATE   Dates of intervention  

SOUTH DAKOTA     1890 (-?)    Troops   300 Lakota Indians massacred at Wounded Knee.

ARGENTINA   1890   Troops   Buenos Aires interests protected.

CHILE   1891   Troops   Marines clash with nationalist rebels.

HAITI   1891   Troops   Black revolt on Navassa defeated.

IDAHO   1892   Troops   Army suppresses silver miners’ strike.

HAWAII   1893 (-?)    Naval, troops   Independent kingdom overthrown, annexed.

CHICAGO   1894   Troops   Breaking of rail strike, 34 killed.

NICARAGUA   1894   Troops   Month-long occupation of Bluefields.

CHINA   1894-95   Naval, troops   Marines land in Sino-Japanese War

KOREA   1894-96   Troops   Marines kept in Seoul during war.

PANAMA   1895   Troops, naval   Marines land in Colombian province.

NICARAGUA   1896   Troops   Marines land in port of Corinto.

CHINA   1898-1900   Troops   Boxer Rebellion fought by foreign armies.

PHILIPPINES   1898-1910 (-?)    Naval, troops   Seized from Spain, killed 600,000 Filipinos
CUBA   1898-1902 (-?)    Naval, troops   Seized from Spain, still hold Navy base.

PUERTO RICO   1898 (-?)    Naval, troops   Seized from Spain, occupation continues.

GUAM   1898 (-?)    Naval, troops   Seized from Spain, still use as base.

MINNESOTA   1898 (-?)    Troops   Army battles Chippewa at Leech Lake.

NICARAGUA   1898   Troops   Marines land at port of San Juan del Sur.

SAMOA   1899 (-?)    Troops   Battle over succession to throne.

NICARAGUA   1899   Troops   Marines land at port of Bluefields.

IDAHO   1899-1901   Troops   Army occupies Coeur d’Alene mining region.

OKLAHOMA   1901   Troops   Army battles Creek Indian revolt.

PANAMA   1901-14   Naval, troops   Broke off from Colombia 1903, annexed Canal Zone; Opened canal 1914.

HONDURAS   1903   Troops   Marines intervene in revolution.”

And that only brings you up to the early 2oth century. You could say the corporations’ best wars all lay ahead of them because this is only a tiny sample of the wars fought for the corporations. When they give the order, the government obeys, and only disobeys at its peril.

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By cpb, October 3, 2011 at 10:36 am Link to this comment

“You’re living in a dream world if after what happened
on the Brooklyn Bridge you still expect the fatcats to
simply pay attention and do the changing for you.”

- Robespierre

You’re living in a dreamworld if you think that anyone
has such expectations.  You’re being unfair and
idealistic if you think that nothing is accomplished
without a clearly articulated vision for national
renovation. 

It is what it is.  It is beautiful.  It is growing. 

I only wish I could be there.

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Leefeller's avatar

By Leefeller, October 3, 2011 at 7:47 am Link to this comment

Yes it is Obama. Yes everything is Obama, not congress, not the top 2 percent, (and their cronies) not Congress, not the Supreme Court, not money, it is all Obama!

Wisdom so profound it sounds almost Tea Baggery! Boy, only if George Bush was still in office, things would be so much better.

So it is not the Koch Brothers, the Red States, Karl Rove, 403C’s, the manipulators, the opportunists, it is all Obama!  Especially it is not Wall Street and the bankers!...Yeah, in my ignorance I got it bpawk!

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By bpawk, October 3, 2011 at 4:37 am Link to this comment

I can’t believe the ignorance of some of the posters here - Obama loves you guys marching on Wall Street because it deflects attention away from him and his administration i.e. his ineffectiveness as president - people are marching on Wall Street and not in Washington because they’re afraid to criticize Obama. This generation is indeed stupid ...

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By Leefeller, October 3, 2011 at 3:46 am Link to this comment

bpawk,

May I suggest you miss the point inadvertently or on purpose…. Who is the government, surly not the people, it is the few, the special interests, the plutocracy, corporations are people now, the lobbyists, super packs and 403c’s, ALEC, aka the Koch Brothers. Always the manipulators, the opportunists, just follow the money. ! 

The protests are an attempt to call attention to the decay of the Republic and blatant inequities fostered against the common persons. 

Step back and view the whole picture!

As profoundly stated by a commenter here some time back on Truth Dig calling attention to the selfish mess we have upon us:... ‘We are all Indians now!’... (thank you Tao Walker).

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By Anarcissie, October 2, 2011 at 6:54 pm Link to this comment

Actually, the ruling class is not only soulless and faceless, but it is also placeless.  If you completely demolished lower Manhattan, the corporations nominally based there would be up and running again in five minutes.  So the literal Wall Street (or Liberty Street, actually) is as good a place to start as any.

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By bpawk, October 2, 2011 at 4:13 pm Link to this comment

Response to Diamond,

The government makes the laws and regulations that govern the people and corporations therefore it is with their blessing (not the other way around) that Wall Street and businesses in general can operate the way they do. Wall Streeters are not the decision-makers, they are acting in self-interest which is what they are supposed to do in a capitalist state. It’s the government that enables how they behave - only governments can fine them, enforce them and throw them in jail.

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By BNB, October 2, 2011 at 2:29 pm Link to this comment

It’s true that the Occupy Wall Street base camp at the park is a nice place to go just to see a different way of living in action—marches or no marches.
Having spent some time there, I can say that when you leave (some never do)you realize how different the world is at large from what’s happening there.

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By diamond, October 2, 2011 at 2:16 pm Link to this comment

‘...they need to go to the source which is the White House - they are the enablers of Wall Street”.

No, it’s the other way round: Wall Street is the enabler of the White House. Without their support no one can move in. Wall Street is the problem and has been for a very long time. These protestors have identified the source of the problem and, naturally enough, have gone there to protest. But the jackals who ‘occupy’ Wall Street all the time are too obsessed with where their next million is coming from to care. They will be like the French aristocrats: they just won’t understand, caught up as they are in wealth, wealth, wealth, what is going on until it’s too late. But by then the global economy will lie in ruins and Wall Street might too.

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By gerard, October 2, 2011 at 2:09 pm Link to this comment

Robespierre:  If the “established order” doesn’t know what to do, and feels threatened, it is very likely to strike out using violence.  Then the temptation to counter that violence with more violence escalates into mayhem.
  Offering “statements, goals, manifestos etc.” simply gives media something to shoot down by pointing up “impossibilities, ignorance, lack of practicality etc. etc.”(in other words “to chew on”)
  To a large extent nonviolent political action is organic (grassroots) and inchoate (wordless, doctrineless, cross-class, difficult to codify for purposes of direct assault.)  It grows naturally by living, breathing on-site inter-communication and realization—or not, as the case may be.
  Even if such development fails to cohere, this gathering (as an event in itself with its own values for both those participating and those learning on the sidelines) is a marvelous adventure and perhaps preliminary to various creative and healing actions.
  No matter how many nonentities sit on balconies drinking cocktails or whatever, OW simply IS a living, breathing step in the direction of a better future. A main thrust is to do all possible to avoid police intervention, since police have little to
no experience or understanding of nonviolence and are therefore pretty much limited to “counter-attack” for which they can always and easily get public support under the mantra of “preserving law and order”, “keeping the peace”—ironically—etc. Undoubtedly they are tempted—but they are also human ...  Restraint and Integrity.  Restraint and Integrity.  Restraint and Integrity.

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By John R., October 2, 2011 at 1:59 pm Link to this comment

@ Robespierre115,

“your response basically proves you’re full of b.s.”

It basically proves that when one is left out of the movement and its inner
workings, it leads to an angry response.

“The movement must appeal to the poor and working class with serious
demands and reforms”

Someone posting here at Truthdig, is acting much like King George once
did, when King George would not recognize the declaration of independence.

Once again, a list of the official demands is here. Once again, you ignore our
list of demands;

Directions for Robespierre115.

On the left side of the page is the MAIN MENU

Down, in the menu click on #Occupy Demands

http://coupmedia.org/

“read actual anarchist philosophy, start with Bakunin and Kropotkin.”

Well respected authors but, of course, they are not here, alive, to advise us in
this moment in time. And, they are not exposed to this form of corporate
influence, and level of media control, which distances them even further from
the effective needs of the here, and now.

We do have: Chris Hedges, Dr. Cornell West, Michael Moore, and a small team
of attorneys. All have grappled with legal issues with U.S. government and
Media majors. They are experienced in the here and now of politics. Books are
great, I love them, but…

“...there’s a difference between knowing the path, and walking the path.”

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By Robespierre115, October 2, 2011 at 1:22 pm Link to this comment

@John R., I fully support the birth of this protest movement, but your response basically proves you’re full of b.s. Now on to serious matters: The movement must appeal to the poor and working class with serious demands and reforms. Once you get the peasantry on your side, the tidal wave will grow, read actual anarchist philosophy, start with Bakunin and Kropotkin. I can recommend a few titles.

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By John R., October 2, 2011 at 10:33 am Link to this comment

@ Robespierre115,

In addition to Anarcissie’s comment -

Why would we reveal this action to just anyone?

To each other, here, at Liberty Square is one thing. We are the movement.

Who are you?

To reveal cards to someone who appears to not have the slightest amount of
patience. Well I believe you understand me.

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By BNB, October 2, 2011 at 10:27 am Link to this comment

I was one of the marchers that opted to go on the car side of the bridge.
I was towards the back. at no time did I hear or see anyone—cop or not—say not to enter the bridge on that side.
Of course I knew it was illegal, but besides that honestly I was not totally into going onto the car side.
I went that route because I thought the crowd was big enough that we might be allowed to pass.
Dumb reason.

After being corralled in the NYPD opened the orange fence and told us (how many I don’t know) that we could go.

Having not been totally behind the idea to begin with I found myself lacking the conviction to stay unless they guaranteed everyone would be released so I left.

Perhaps if I’d been on the walkway I would have stayed and gotten arrested. As it was I had some sympathy for the drivers of the cars and was just a bit uncomfortable and unhappy with putting them in a bad spot.

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By Anarcissie, October 2, 2011 at 10:14 am Link to this comment

Robespierre—I think the Occupation, or whatever it evolves into, is going to have to work it out one step at a time.  For the moment we have the curious spectacle of a movement using radical methods to try to achieve mild liberal-reformist ends.  The fact that these ends (many of which are favored by the general public) are not part of normal media-and-electoral politics suggests that the established order is completely paralyzed.  When that is understood by a large number of people, some sort of upheaval can be expected.

At this point, when the country has been so deeply corrupted, it is hard for anyone to make a finite list of the things that need to be done, much less figure out how to do them.

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By Robespierre115, October 2, 2011 at 9:51 am Link to this comment

@John R., you still have not provided a convincing answer as to how you expect the current, decayed state, which we just saw unleash its attack dogs on unarmed protesters, to implement those amendmenets. You’re living in a dream world if after what happened on the Brooklyn Bridge you still expect the fatcats to simply pay attention and do the changing for you.

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By John R., October 2, 2011 at 9:17 am Link to this comment

@ Robespierre

“All struggles require hardship and sacrifice…”

I have not taken a census of the occupation, but its likely most have lost their
jobs. Some at the occupation are homeless, I have spoken to them. But most
here living now at “liberty Square” have left a bedroom and a bed with clean
sheets to live on the pavement and grass in dropping temperatures and cold
rain. No doubt, there will be greater sacrifices, and bridges to cross ahead. All
in due time.

“...and they are even more inspiring when they offer a real, coherent vision to
replace the decayed state.”

The movement is not here to “replace the state” no, the people here want
amendments to the Constitution. These Amendments to the Constitution are
coherent vision, agreed upon by the masses of Occupywallstreet and, I’ve been
told, reviewed by several attorneys, and given endorsement by those attorneys.
The demands are REAL and COHERENT.

But someone posting here at Truthdig, is acting much like King George once
did, when King George would not recognize the declaration of independence. 

Once again Robespierre115 - I will direct your attention to the
OccupyWallStreet official demands.

This is where you can be of service to the movement. Or is it, you only wish to
critique the efforts of so many people, over 3,ooo in Los Angeles on Sat Oct 1. 

Directions for Robespierre115.

On the left side of the page is the MAIN MENU

Down, in the menu click on #Occupy Demands

http://coupmedia.org/

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By bpawk, October 2, 2011 at 8:31 am Link to this comment

They shouldn’t be marching in New York, they need to go to the source which is the White House - they are the enablers of Wall Street - I believe they won’t because they don’t want to criticize Obama, but why give him a pass?  If you look at the NYT front page Sunday, it looks like Mitt Romney is more progressive than Obama re taxing the rich. Good, that will give Obama a run for his money!

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By PatrickHenry, October 2, 2011 at 7:45 am Link to this comment

Its all fun and games until someone gets hurt.

When that happens, the gloves come off and a segment of our society who normally doesn’t protest will come out from the shadows.

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By mediasanctuary, October 2, 2011 at 7:00 am Link to this comment

Great short video with interviews of Occupy Wall Street folks talking about why
they’re participating: http://tinyurl.com/whyoccupywallstreet

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By Jim Yell, October 2, 2011 at 6:07 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It is very comforting to know that the police have time and money to arrest 700 peaceful demonstrators. It is less comforting to know they can hardly find the time to arrest 700 stealing investment bankers, or even try.

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By Robespierre115, October 2, 2011 at 2:10 am Link to this comment

A good lesson on how it doesn’t matter if you want to wave a “nonpartisan,” “nonviolent” flag, the capitalist state will always apply the nightstick. Organize and structure a real alternative to the system, don’t risk the safety of others just to vent against it. All struggles require hardship and sacrifice, and they are even more inspiring when they offer a real, coherent vision to replace the decayed state.

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By Rafael, October 2, 2011 at 2:01 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

One correction must be made:  There were hundreds who took the roadway rather than the pedestrian walkway, not 20 as stated.

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