Winner 2013 Webby Awards for Best Political Website
Top Banner, Site wide
Apr 16, 2014

 Choose a size
Text Size

Top Leaderboard, Site wide





Paul Robeson: A Life


Truthdig Bazaar more items

 
Ear to the Ground

Movement Against Wall Street Grows With Oct. 15 Protest

Email this item Email    Print this item Print    Share this item... Share

Posted on Oct 16, 2011
Alexander Reed Kelly

NEW YORK—Thousands of people of all ages, races and creeds gathered beneath the jumbo-size screens and billboards in Times Square on Saturday night to demand a participatory role in American democracy, while similar protests occurred in cities throughout the world.

The demonstration was set to begin at 5 p.m., but protesters began filing in long before then. Police officers on foot, bike and horseback and in vehicles were waiting with billy clubs and zip ties and had cordoned off pedestrian walkways in the middle of the streets. Marchers from elsewhere in the city, including Liberty Plaza, which protesters have occupied since Sept. 17, seemed to arrive in waves. It was unclear what would happen as the crowd grew, and there were moments when some demonstrators called for others to gather elsewhere, including in front of Rockefeller Center, where the Fox News Channel is headquartered.

Via the human microphone—a vocal call-and-response technique used by crowds to amplify a single voice—protesters said: “We are here to celebrate the birth of a new world, a world of and by and for the 99 percent.” Others chanted in unison: “What do you do when you’re under attack? Stand up! Fight back!” A parade of “zombies” holding signs condemning “corporate cannibalism” of the American public wandered up and down 7th Avenue, with arms stretched forward, incanting the word “Brains” in a monotonous tone. Some tourists and shoppers seemed amused by the spectacle, while others fled in disgust and fear. At one moment, a well-dressed couple stepped out of a taxicab and were allowed through a police barricade. A policeman, when asked how the demonstration compared with Times Square’s annual New Year’s Eve party, where hundreds of thousands assemble to celebrate the arrival of another year, said the crowd at the yearly party was much more unruly.

Later on in the bar of the Algonquin Hotel on 44th Street, just blocks away from the lively protest, a middle-aged, self-described capitalist male spoke to a number of people—who mostly called themselves “free-market conservatives” and state-level lobbyists—about the virtues of the Occupy Wall Street movement. “This is a movement for everyone,” he said. “Everyone knows something’s wrong. You’re upset, you’ve lost your job or you’re worried about losing your job. … Who can work when they’re always worried about losing their job?”

Elsewhere, daring protesters attempted to spread the occupation of Wall Street to other parks in New York City—an effort that from the start was unlikely to succeed, given that the encampment in Zuccotti Park is possible because that property is privately owned. Many were met with police, which bewildered some of the participants because the plan to occupy those parks was supposed to have been spread among friends and confidants, rather than announced in a way that would alert authorities. —ARK

 

More Below the Ad

Advertisement

Square, Site wide

New and Improved Comments

If you have trouble leaving a comment, review this help page. Still having problems? Let us know. If you find yourself moderated, take a moment to review our comment policy.

By ardee, October 19, 2011 at 10:45 am Link to this comment

None so blind as those who will not see:

Nader had a platform, one that many felt was the best out there. Nader had a plan, and continues to have one,many felt it a good plan, and still do.

That your absurdity that writing in Mickie Mouse is a valid form of protest when given the positions and speeches of Ralph Nader, his criticisms of the Duopoly Party and their corporate masters defines your silliness far, far better than ever I could.

Bye now for you too.

Report this
skimohawk's avatar

By skimohawk, October 19, 2011 at 1:34 am Link to this comment

ardee,
thanks for responding in exactly the manner I knew you would.
insults, names, or any of your crap still doesn’t change minds or make for cogent arguments.
good for a laugh, if nothing else.
keep up the good work!
cheers!

Report this

By ardee, October 18, 2011 at 5:29 am Link to this comment

skimohawk, October 17 at 7:04 pm Link to this comment

And besides, my comment regarding Nader was in response to bpawk’s suggesting Nader jump into the ring again and lead some “third party”.
How many times does the guy lose before you realize he’s a loser?

Unfortunately there is a loser here, and it appears to be you. Your position is indefensible, your ability to abstract from the evidence presented almost intolerable. So before I abandon you to the cellar of this forum alone with the various cranks and the mushrooms that flourish in the dark I will restate for the last time; not, of course for your benefit, but for the purpose of putting truth to your continual lie.

Nader had a platform, one that many felt was the best out there. Nader had a plan, and continues to have one,many felt it a good plan, and still do.

That your absurdity that writing in Mickie Mouse is a valid form of protest when given the positions and speeches of Ralph Nader, his criticisms of the Duopoly Party and their corporate masters defines your silliness far, far better than ever I could.

Bye now, I truly hope you gain enlightenment some day.

Report this
skimohawk's avatar

By skimohawk, October 17, 2011 at 7:04 pm Link to this comment

And besides, my comment regarding Nader was in response to bpawk’s suggesting Nader jump into the ring again and lead some “third party”.
How many times does the guy lose before you realize he’s a loser?
If you want to make a “protest” vote, write in Mickey Mouse or Superman or George the Dog, as I have done in several elections. Any of those has as much chance of winning as Nader.
Go ahead and keep banging that Nader drum… you have ten fingers and ten toes… more than enough to count all those listening.

Report this
skimohawk's avatar

By skimohawk, October 17, 2011 at 6:57 pm Link to this comment

re: ardee: “The real question is why do you avoid the fact that those who voted for Nader did so knowing full well he was unelectable.”

Where, in any of my comments, did you find me saying anything to that effect?
That’s purely speculative thinking on your part.
Unless, of course, your powers of clairvoyance allow you to see inside the heads of all those who voted for ol’ Ralph.

Certainly, judging a man by his haircut or attire is silly, but unfortunately that’s how it works.
Remember Perot’s “I’m all ears!” or Howard Dean’s “YEEHAW!”? It doesn’t take much to torpedo a political campaign.

Sorry, but your nit-picking is tiresome.
Thanks for taking the time to look up the heights of 26 presidents. You were able to make me wrong on that one.
This horse is dead. Stop beating it already.

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, October 17, 2011 at 4:29 pm Link to this comment

Jerry Frey, October 17 at 12:53 pm – Yes, Soros, patron to liberal
leftist progressives is included, but you seemed to forget all the
money, the millions of dollars, Karl Rove and the Koch brothers
are thunder-storming into Republican politicians’ pockets who
are current legislators and just revealed on the news are the Koch
brothers who have been funding Republican Tea-Party sympathizers,
has been bankrolling and grooming Herman Cain since 2005.  All
tailored to putting more huge-figured money into Wall Streeters and
creating the American people as victims.  How about keeping all
corporate money out of politics?  An entire campaign funding reform
is definitely a cardinal commandment.

Report this

By ardee, October 17, 2011 at 3:53 pm Link to this comment

skimohawk, October 17 at 11:33 am

The real question is why do you avoid the fact that those who voted for Nader did so knowing full well he was unelectable. The votes were for sanity in politics, as well as being a rejection of two party politics wherein both parties are equally in the thrall of big money.

All your personal comments regarding looks and attire are simply silly.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, October 17, 2011 at 3:44 pm Link to this comment

Elsewhere, daring protesters attempted to spread the occupation of Wall Street to other parks in New York City—an effort that from the start was unlikely to succeed, given that the encampment in Zuccotti Park is possible because that property is privately owned.

The irony of the fact that ‘the encampment in Zuccotti Park is possible because that property is privately owned’ seems to escape everyone.

The campers ought to remember to say ‘thank-you’ to the owners but that is not their style.

Report this

By Jerry Frey, October 17, 2011 at 12:53 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

An unscripted reality show, Occupy America is a
populist movement in the tradtion of the nineteenth
century Cross of Gold. Speculation (George Soros;
hedge funds), long or short, oil futures, de-
regulation, neo-liberalism, benefits the 1 percent
connected class with no social benefit. Banks once
organized and allocated capital in order to produce
wealth, economic expansion, that benefited the many
rather than the few. Globalists know no national
loyalty and are detached from their nations.

Get the $oney out of politics. Campaign contributions
are the nexus of corruption in the capitol. Reduce
the amount of money involved in re-election, which
really is the name of the game, by promulgating free
air time during elections. Keep the current system
for primaries.


http://napoleonlive.info/what-i-think/occupy-wall-
street-get-the-money-out-of-politics/

Report this
skimohawk's avatar

By skimohawk, October 17, 2011 at 11:33 am Link to this comment

ardee, Nader had a heck of a platform.
He just isn’t (and never was) an electable candidate.
40+ years in sales and marketing taught me a few things, among them “presentation is everything”, and “perception is reality to the viewer”.
Nader unfortunately never hired a competent handler that could “package” him properly.
Go back and dig up the Nixon-Kennedy TV debates and the impact Nixon’s “5 o’clock shadow” had on the election in 1960.
You can continue to pick away in any manner you choose, but it makes it no less true.
Americans don’t vote on “platforms”. They vote on their fears.

Report this

By ardee, October 17, 2011 at 5:48 am Link to this comment

skimohawk, October 16 at 9:10 pm

You are quite welcome indeed. Skewering fools may be a habit I should break, but there you have it.

One obsessed with the height of a candidate, or the height of his socks ( OMG), rather than the planks in his/her platform, the criticisms meted out that make so many follow his leadership, or even the reasons that those who voted for Nader did so for reasons that seem to escape you ( and that you proudly defend that ignorance) make you rather an easy target, petty though that may seem.

Perhaps, should you continue to post here, you will actually contribute something meaningful. Or will your next effort prove that only those candidates wearing boxer briefs are eligible for office?

Report this

By Lori Zambito, October 17, 2011 at 5:16 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

How irritating to continually have to listen to people repeat the soundbites that
people repeat after they hear it on the news…..“what do the protesters even
want?” “what’s going to happen when the weather turns cold?”

Although I don’t agree that the protesters need to be specific, it will be obvious
to any thinking person what they want. If you are unsure just do a Google
search and a list of demands are listed on a multitude of websites. I’m sure they
will find a way to protest during the winter months - they aren’t mosquitos who
will die from cold temperatures. They will have access to winter coats, blankets
and generators.

The movement is growing daily. Many more are excited about it and more will
wind up going themselves in the coming weeks. I was there this weekend with
tens of thousands of people in attendance - not thousands. They are angry
because they have been betrayed by their government.

Some are getting arrested because there is a fringe element in any group like
this one. The people who are occupying aren’t a bunch of hippies and weirdos
either as the media likes to portray them - although there isn’t anything wrong
with being a hippy the last time I checked. Thanks to the hippies we aren’t still
in Vietnam. Unfortunately we are still in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Report this
Lafayette's avatar

By Lafayette, October 17, 2011 at 12:25 am Link to this comment

THE WRONG AFFLICTING US ALLL

As the Ancient Romans once said, “Give them games, porridge and wine”. Is our world that much different today? Except that the sports, cornflakes and beer are no longer enough?

It is beyond most people, I suggest, that the Great Recession could easily happen again because there is something fundamentally wrong with our economic system.

That wrong has been well-identified – it is called Income Unfairness and the inequity is awesome. Reckless Reagan precipitously brought down our marginal income taxes from levels of 70% to 30% (effectively 20/24% after deductions), which caused a massive shift of wealth upwards to create the Plutocrat Class in America.

That class, after three decades of net income (after tax) transfers has meant that the top 1% own 43% of our financial wealth and the top 20% own 94% of it. (See info-graphic here)

This glaring imbalance is at the heart of income unfairness today and the root cause of the demonstrations across America.

And how is that inequity corrected. Easily, by increasing marginal income (and capital gains taxes) to levels where they were for for years (from the late 1930s to 1970) – see info-graphic here.

Note also in that info-graphic the inflexion point of the green line (National Debt) that coincides with the reduction of higher marginal income taxes in 1980 – when Reagan came to office.

Lest we forget, the above are the reasons people across America (and even the world) are indignantly demonstrating today. And those reasons will not dissipate with the morning dew until our nation does something about them.

Report this

By larrypsy, October 16, 2011 at 10:12 pm Link to this comment

I think it’s essential that protesters avoid acting-out in a provocative manner.  Repugnicans are Praying that we be dismissed as an antisocial group - I would beware of infiltration with that in mind.

Report this
zonth_zonth's avatar

By zonth_zonth, October 16, 2011 at 10:06 pm Link to this comment

In melbourne yesterday (sunday)
there was a demonstration. Saw lots
of “end the fed” signs. So i can
confirm that it has indeed spread to
“cities around the world”

Report this
skimohawk's avatar

By skimohawk, October 16, 2011 at 9:10 pm Link to this comment

Gee, ardee…. so glad you were able to make me wrong.
Take long putting that list together?
Sure looks to me like during the last 50 years we’ve had a tendency to send tall men to the White House, the possible exception being Jimmy Carter at a mere 5’9”.
Now, if you’re going to go back to the 18th Century, you should factor in the fact that we were all shorter then.
Great job picking gnat shit out of black pepper, but Ralph Nader will still never be an electable candidate.

Report this

By ardee, October 16, 2011 at 6:50 pm Link to this comment

skimohawk, October 16 at 3:05 pm Link to this comment

Nader is not an electable candidate.
A man who can’t learn to keep his socks pulled up on national television, and who can’t seem to find a decent barber is not going to be elected to the presidency, any more than a man under six feet in height.
Simple.

I give you the heights of several presidents:

19   27   William Howard Taft   5 ft 11 1?2 in   182 cm   [14]
19   31   Herbert Hoover   5 ft 11 1?2 in   182 cm   [15]
19   37   Richard Nixon   5 ft 11 1?2 in   182 cm   [6],[13]
19   43   George W. Bush   5 ft 11 1?2 in   182 cm   [16][17]
23   22   Grover Cleveland   5 ft 11 in   180 cm   [6]
23   28   Woodrow Wilson   5 ft 11 in   180 cm   [6],[18]
25   34   Dwight D. Eisenhower   5 ft 10 1?2 in   179 cm   [6]
26   14   Franklin Pierce   5 ft 10 in   178 cm   [6]
26   17   Andrew Johnson   5 ft 10 in   178 cm   [6]
26   26   Theodore Roosevelt   5 ft 10 in   178 cm   [6],[12]
26   30   Calvin Coolidge   5 ft 10 in   178 cm   [6]
30   39   Jimmy Carter   5 ft 9 1?2 in   177 cm   [6],[13]
31   13   Millard Fillmore   5 ft 9 in   175 cm   [6]
31   33   Harry S. Truman   5 ft 9 in   175 cm   [6]
33   19   Rutherford B. Hayes   5 ft 8 1?2 in   174 cm   [19][6]
34   9   William Henry Harrison   5 ft 8 in   173 cm   [6]
34   11   James K. Polk   5 ft 8 in   173 cm   [6],[20]
34   12   Zachary Taylor   5 ft 8 in   173 cm   [6],[12]
34   18   Ulysses S. Grant   5 ft 8 in   173 cm   [21]
38   6   John Quincy Adams   5 ft 7 1?2 in   171 cm   [22]
39   2   John Adams   5 ft 7 in   170 cm   [6],[23]
39   25   William McKinley   5 ft 7 in   170 cm   [6]
41   23   Benjamin Harrison   5 ft 6 in   168 cm   [24]
41   8   Martin Van Buren   5 ft 6 in   168 cm   [25]
43   4   James Madison   5 ft 4 in  

But, your ridiculous obsession with height notwithstanding, I agree that Nader was unelectable. I doubt that all of us who voted for him did so in order to actually elect the man. I think that, if you think really, really hard, or better yet, find an adult to think for you I bet you can discover why we did vote for the man.

Report this
Peter Knopfler's avatar

By Peter Knopfler, October 16, 2011 at 5:07 pm Link to this comment

NICE FOR NOW: MY CONCERN; A LITTLE LATE! WEATHER!
WINTER COMES EARLY AND HARD, COLD AND HARD! SOON!
HAD THESE NICE FOLKS COME OUT IN MARCH; THEY COULD
SHUT DOWN THE CITY AND DESTROY CORPORATE XMAS:
WE DID HAVE A RECORD HEAT AND NOW PENDULUM MOVING
RAPIDLY TO OPPOSITE SIDE RECORD COLD SOON!
SAVE YOUR FOOD, BECAUSE YOUR MONEY WILL BE SPENT TO
STAY WARM!
YOUR TAX MONEY IS ALREADY SPENT; SO YOU ARE ON YOUR
OWN:NO CHAVEZ TO KEEP YOU WARM THIS YEAR! SLAVES IN
UNIFORM; SLAVES IN SUITS HOMELESS SICK AND ADDICTED:
HAVE A NICE DAY SLAVES!

Report this
Daye's avatar

By Daye, October 16, 2011 at 4:59 pm Link to this comment

Bravo, ARK!

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, October 16, 2011 at 4:47 pm Link to this comment

“The increasing size and enthusiam for this “Occupy Wall Street” movement is clear evidence of the need and desire for a “national conversation” among all sectors of the nation.\”

Wow, “all sectors”. i wasnt aware of that. Including my sector? Really? But most folks out here are conservative, and we are a little slow, so maybe you are right. If all sectors want to chat, lets have a “national conversation”.

Out here in the countryside we didnt know you Occupy Wall Street guys just wanted to talk. We were looking forward to a “national conversation” this fall called an “election”. Thats what we like, win or lose we dig it.

See you at the polls!

Oh wait, that not what you mean. You are talking about starting a new form of government. I wasnt aware that I wanted that. But if you say so…

Report this
skimohawk's avatar

By skimohawk, October 16, 2011 at 4:20 pm Link to this comment

bpawk, it has nothing to do with my “criteria”.
it’s just the way it is.
same as with those who refused to vote for Ross Perot because his ears were too big.
whether or not you agree with it makes it no less true.

Report this

By bpawk, October 16, 2011 at 4:08 pm Link to this comment

skimohawk,
If that’s your criteria for electing a candidate, then Americans are in big trouble.

Report this
OzarkMichael's avatar

By OzarkMichael, October 16, 2011 at 3:20 pm Link to this comment

“The demonstrators need to be specific about what else they want to do to participate in American democracy.”

Ah. You noticed that little deficiency…

after you supported it.

Report this
skimohawk's avatar

By skimohawk, October 16, 2011 at 3:05 pm Link to this comment

Nader is not an electable candidate.
A man who can’t learn to keep his socks pulled up on national television, and who can’t seem to find a decent barber is not going to be elected to the presidency, any more than a man under six feet in height.
Simple.

Report this

By GW=MCHammered, October 16, 2011 at 2:15 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

(for those that haven’t yet reckoned it)

Alan Grayson explains OWS on Real Time w/Bill Maher
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RZgZeAOaq4U

Go global OWS!

Report this

By bpawk, October 16, 2011 at 1:58 pm Link to this comment

Both parties are no good (the lesser of the two evils argument is long dead). I say we nominate Ralph Nader to lead the third party as an independent or green candidate.  The Dems will be unhappy about this and will do everything to stop him from getting on the ballot/debates as they did previously even to the point where they will threaten arresting him. Unlike the past when people still thought “vote the lesser of the two evils”, today Ralph would make a real difference as this time the people would be behind him. He has the background and experience in his knowledge of government and fighting big corporations for you and me. He has the education and a sense of justice missing in today’s politicians, he’s honest to a fault if there is such a thing. The movemenet needs a leader as the powers that be will not give up their privileges so easily - this is serious business. My only concern would be the Dems would probably assassinate him if he became too popular, but I’m afraid that’s the only real alternative.

Report this
Shenonymous's avatar

By Shenonymous, October 16, 2011 at 1:34 pm Link to this comment

The thousands of people demanding a participatory role in
American democracy already have that with their right to vote
(the Republicans are using every craven strategy to disenfranchise
many voters to deny them that right.  They are the ones that have
to be stopped immediately). 

The demonstrators need to be specific about what else they want
to do to participate in American democracy. They are exercising
their democratic US Constitutional right to assemble and protest. 
Various interpreters are saying what they think the demonstrators
want, and there is a list being generated but the group is not speaking
out how they think they can change things.  And while the movement
might be a big crowd of people, it is still inchoate.  They sing out
they want to Stand up! and Fight back!  But so far they are fighting
apparitions.  To assemble just for the sake of assembling wastes a
lot of energy and emotion.  The claim of Corporate cannibalism is
only speaking about a fictional enemy until it is specified, loudly,
who exactly are these corporate cannibals. Too many Americans are
“amused” and not taking OWS too seriously and are continuing to just go
“shopping” at the corporate department stores.  Activist boycotts need to
be demanded by the entire multitude.  People need to take their money
out of the banks that are the exploiters of the American people and put
it into credit unions or community banks.  Then you would see just how
fast the Wall Streeters make some changes. One of the financial criminals
has just been given a jail sentence.  It can happen if charges are levied.

Just remember, The Republican Party is the Party Against the People.

Report this
skimohawk's avatar

By skimohawk, October 16, 2011 at 1:32 pm Link to this comment

re: bpawk:
“he’s silent as he waits to see which way the wind blows..”

As are they all, waiting and hoping for the opportunity to co-opt the whole thing to their own purposes.
I agree with bpawk’s statements, but I’d take it a step further: not only is it important, it’s the most important thing to remember: Obama cannot be trusted, any more than Romney, Cain, or any of the other posers and wanna-bes.

Report this

By bpawk, October 16, 2011 at 1:14 pm Link to this comment

It’s important for the protesters to see that Obama and government/White House/Congress are also part of the problem and Obama hhas had almost 3 years to set it right but didn’t - he continued from Bush bailing out Wall Street but no Main Street; he kept Bush’s tax breaks for the wealthy; he is still a war president like Bush; he has kept deregulation for Wall Street like Bush, etc. He isn’t criticizing or supporting the protests yet though because he is waiting to see if the movement will figure out that he’s a corporatist like Wall Street and challenge him or ignore the above facts in which case he will support them - he’s silent as he waits to see which way the wind blows ... Please go to protest in Washington ...

Report this

By gerard, October 16, 2011 at 1:10 pm Link to this comment

The increasing size and enthusiam for this “Occupy Wall Street” movement is clear evidence of the need and desire for a “national conversation” among all sectors of the nation.\

Education concerning how democracy is being coopted by money, at the expense of 98% of the people, is needed on all sides—rich or poor. 

It may be time for another “Constitutional Convention” to broadly and deeply examine the meaning and prospects for democracy in an age of rapidly developing technologies and skills of communication.  Time too for a better understanding of fndamental human needs and how the limited resources can be more widely distributed and shared to make human life sustainable in the coming decades. 

Broad representation would be necessary. Calling upon the best efforts of qualified people would be vital.  Democratic processes void of discriminations would serve to bring more people into the process and
revitalize the flow of information, vitality, and participation in the life of the nation.

Such an event, if well thought out, unbiased, fluid and free, would be an innovation of worldwide significance and offer a new way of solving difficult problems without violence and decay.
Occupy Wall Street has jump-started awareness of this need, for which we are all endebted.

Report this
Newsletter

sign up to get updates


 
 
Right 1, Site wide - BlogAds Premium
 
Right 2, Site wide - Blogads
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 
 
 
Right Skyscraper, Site Wide
 
Join the Liberal Blog Advertising Network
 

A Progressive Journal of News and Opinion   Publisher, Zuade Kaufman   Editor, Robert Scheer
© 2014 Truthdig, LLC. All rights reserved.