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#OccupyWallStreet

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Statement from the good folks on Wall Street:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=N8o3peQq79Q

Oct 15, 11 10:57 am
FRaC

yay for socialism!

<sent from my iPhone>

Oct 15, 11 12:31 pm
jla-x

All economic systems are man-made.  I don't want socialism, capitalism is probably a more sustainable and fair system overall, but when under regulated it tends toward oligarchy.  We need to design a new system, possibly incorporating some bits of socialism, some of capitalism, but overall it should be new, stronger, and better.  Most people are not calling for an end to capitalism, but rather reacting to what is by nature the rise of corporatism resulting from capitaism gone wild. 

Oct 15, 11 1:14 pm

"capitalism is probably a more sustainable and fair system overall" ...

for the one percent, and except for the "sustainable" part.

 

Oct 15, 11 1:27 pm
Bench

Wow, didnt know I was so missed here! I still check back onto the forum everyday, but since I'm not even finished my undergrad arch. degree I feel more comfortable reading rather than posting for the most part.

Unfortunately I am not able to go to my local Occupy rally, which Im disappointed in (myself, that is). I had already made commitments before this all went down that couldn't be changed, but I am very happy that my fellow Canucks are joining in the call! I feel fortunate that in Canadaland we don't have quite the same scale of these problems as the states; feels much more manageable here.

To everyone out there today, I salute you!

Oct 15, 11 3:58 pm

OK, here is what confuses me: Ron Paul says libertarianism is the answer because the free market will DEMAND that companies provide safe food, create safe products, don't pollute, etc.  because, supposedly, we won't buy things from them if they behave badly - a polluting company will fail, basically, so we don't need regulation.  Which I think is completely disingenuous.

But on the other hand, capitalism DOES allow us to vote with our dollars, with the assumption that the playing field is level: that regulations prevent dangerous food, dangerous products, and pollution - the market HAS to have regulations or companies will poison everything for everyone, including themselves, in pursuit of profits (The Lorax, anyone?).

Which seems to be, on the whole, where we are right now.  I'm not anti-capitalism, as long as it's fair.  I'm not pro-socialism, because IMO it can stifle creativity.  I'm certainly not pro-libertarian, as I think it's lazy.  So how do we, as j.arleo says, build something that has the best of those systems and others?  

I do feel we're on the verge of a manufacturing and information market that considers the world as a system of balanced forces, but Wall Street - meaning investor companies, not individuals - are NOT interested in that way of thinking, they only want to gamble and win, whatever the cost to anyone.  So to me, the focus of the Occupy protests is not capitalism vs. socialism, but simply how do we make the financial sector consider the overall health of the world, not just this afternoon's profits?

Oct 15, 11 8:12 pm

wall street is not about gambling really.

it's about playing games that are irrelevant to the success of an enterprise that is destructive.  collecting fees on trades means any trade is a good thing and the more the better.  setting up systems to fail so that hedged positions come out on the right side is another way to game things.  there are all kinds of things that the folks in the financial industry can do to move money in their direction and very few of them have anything to do with gambling or with backing a good company (which is what wall street should be about at some point no?) . 

no idea how that is going to change apart from regulating the system, but the market in these cases only demands profits, the means are irrelevant, the fact that a business underlies the trades is also irrelevant. in which case the idea that companies that are immoral will be regulated by consumption patterns is silly.  wall street consumes movement of money and positions and hedges and cetera.  it is not based on the kinds of things that ron paul is talking about.  either he knows that and thinks the toothfairy will make it right or he is stupid.    either way the entire idea is just rubbish.

not sure there is a point in the above,but i am certainly frustrated as everyone else.  this entire affair seems endless and bottomless at the moment.  really wish someone would put some pants on those suckers.

Oct 15, 11 9:26 pm

OWS is not about making the corporate-financial complex or the government do anything. They have repeatedly proven, to the dismay and disaster of us all, that they are utterly incapable of being responsible, civil or even humane.

OWS is not a political party or platform, it is not a list of demands. It is the beginning of true democracy based on equality and participation where everyone has a voice.

Attend an occupation, read the Occupied Wall Street Journal. Be the 99%. We all need to do this together.

 

Oct 15, 11 9:33 pm
trace™

I've been reading and listening to some rather positive views of where this is all leading.  Even some drawing parallels between OWS and the Tea Party, which is quite interesting when you think about the average person's distaste for the way things are and look paste the crazy politicians (for example, we all agree that unchecked spending, out of control debt, etc., is just not a good thing, we also all agree that needless/careless/thoughtless war is unsustainable and pointless, if not downright despicable).

 

I do hope that a third party emerges somewhere, sometime, that addresses these issues that people care about.  Ross Perot comes to mind (via listening to various interviews) and how he changed the political debate just by being there and insisting on talking about something 'real'.  

I don't think any of this really has to do with labels (conservative/liberals, D's/R's, etc., etc.).

 

So I hope and pray that things begin moving in the right direction.  It really doesn't take much, as soon as the power shifts at the top in response to the people's voices there will be change.  We just need someone up there to get their heads out of there collective asses and look around at the world and respond with a simple logic that your average person can understand and appreciate.

Oct 15, 11 10:38 pm
jla-x

Just got back from occupy phoenix....Over 1000 people they say, but It seemed like 2000 at least.  Big turnout for a city like Phoenix. 

 

Oct 16, 11 12:02 am

Thats excellent, j.arleo!  And Sherriff Joe didn't shut you guys down, even better!

Oct 16, 11 12:09 am
jla-x

Thanks Donna Sink!  The crowd was moved from city hall to a park next to the Phoenix public library (which is a really great piece of architecture by the way.)  The cops were pretty chill considering their reputation.  I was really pleased to see the wide spread conciousness around issues such as sprawl and sustainability.      

Oct 16, 11 1:21 am

Phoenix Public Library is one of my favorite buildings ever.

Did people have protest signs about sprawl and sustainability?

Oct 16, 11 8:51 am

Just an update, we had a great rally here in Orange County CA.  About 600 people which is more than I expected considering we marched in one of the most corporate/conservative cities (Irvine) in a real republican stronghold like Orange County.  From what I hear LA did well and got somewhere around 2,500 to 3,000.

Boy do I think this movement has legs.  When I first arrived in LA, @ 10 am there was around 250 people, two weeks later 2,500, a ten fold increase in two weeks!

My mission now is to figure out how to get all the people honking there horns in support (there were quite a few) to get out and join us.  Any creative ideas?

Oct 16, 11 9:33 am

I'm thinking this is an out-of-work-architect at OWS.  Look at the form of those G's!

Oct 16, 11 10:32 am
FRaC

only ginning things up fo' sho' !!

Oct 16, 11 1:06 pm
Purpurina

We also need a BIG sign for UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE on the mix!

It has been part of the greed for so long now. 

Oct 16, 11 5:30 pm
Rusty!

BenC, can't speak for others but I definitively missed your comments.

So I spent 10 hours at Toronto's occupy yesterday. Some thoughts:

  • I was very impressed at the overall organization of the event. More on that below.
  • The event started at the financial district but then moved to a close-by downtown park, city block sized. Local conservative media said it was 1000 people, more liberal media said 2500. I would put the number between 3 to 4K. It was hard to tell from the outside since the park is big enough to conceal a lot of people, and neither media nor cops dared enter the park until much later in the evening when most of people have already left. 
  • Before the protesters even got to the park, yellow tape was used to cordon off specific areas of the park, the way one would plan a city. By the end of the setup, there were private tent areas, common assembly area (gazebo!), a field hospital tent, media center, food area, a library, women only tent area with 24-hour security protection, smoking area, sanitation tent, and few others I can't recall right now. In the mid day 15 porta-potties were delivered courtesy of a local construction union. Go construction guys!
  • This is definitively a long term operation. Winter is setting in, but if anyone knows how to camp under impossible weather conditions, it's a Canadian. Besides the about 200 permanent campers, there will be events planed that will draw back the larger crowds. Monday's event is to take a walk back over to the financial district. Say hi to the banksters.
  • Cops deserve a credit for being great. A year ago they released carnage on G20 protesters that is still talked about heavily. This time no riot squads. No galloping horses. Just cops on bicycles (I love bike cops! most people do). Stern but very friendly and approachable. And in shape! Hope things stay this way.
  • The crowd was very diverse, Both in age and race. Some brought their kids. Some brought their dogs. It was a very friendly environment overall. There was music and dancing everywhere.
  • The food tent had its first delivery of foods courtesy of a local farmer. I had some yummy carrots and an apple. Much more was to come.
  • The "crazies": There were communists, and Bolsheviks, and hardcore unionists, and aboriginals telling EVERYONE to get off their land. They comprised less than 10% of the overall crowd. The other 90% were ideology free, looking for practical solutions. Which brings me to:
  • By far the biggest sign at the event was "Ron Paul Revolution". Ron Paul for prime minister? My friend tried to engage the yonge kids but they were so ideology filled, they were impenetrable in their beliefs.
  • The "human megaphone" was a lot of fun to participate in. Instead of just passively listening to a speech, you became an active participant. It kept the speeches very compact and to the point as well.  The organizers decided not to use PA systems. A lot was learned from NYC protest, and vastly improved upon IMO.
  • A lot of committees were set up to deal with various logistics. They were looking for more volunteers. All final decisions had to be agreed upon by at least 75% of the participants.
  • I am using bullet points just because.
  • Besides going to the event with a super smart friend of mine, I didn't run into a single person I knew. And I know a bunch of people here. I need new friends. Clearly. 
  • I could go on forever, so this is a good place to stop as any.

Not sure how far this will go. It was super organized, and it will probably go on for a few months. Will it accomplish anything? Probably not. General public just doesn't seem to care either way. Canada has only had a very mild recession, and is blissfully unaware how much their standard of living has eroded in the last 10 years (frog in boiling water experiment), nor the very real dangers they may be facing if the global economy goes triple dip. The majority consensus here is that Canadians are that much smarter than anyone else. Very dumb position IMO.

I plan on attending future events of occupy toronto, and perhaps seeing if I can help in any other way.

Oct 16, 11 6:41 pm
Rusty!

I forgot the most important bullet point: the whole event made me feel like I just witnessed a reenactment of birth of democracy. 

Not that any of us even know what that is anymore.

Oct 16, 11 7:03 pm

rusty, in terms of accomplishing anything, I read an article the other day that made me think. The author was saying that Occupy Wall Street had already won, because they've changed the conversation from just being about the deficit to finally being about the people. Just drawing attention to the enormity of the wage gap and the fact that people aren't able to/willing to handle it anymore forces the politicians to address the issue in one way or another.

Oct 16, 11 10:37 pm
newguy

Okay, so first some required reading/viewing.

 

The Top 1%:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XdVODFombco

 

A good How the Financial System Crashed: 4 part series that goes into some good depth

http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/meltdown/2011/09/2011914105518615434.html

 

Goldman Sachs:

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/the-great-american-bubble-machine-20100405

 

CitiBank gives sound financial advise to those who want to control it all:

http://canadianclimateaction.files.wordpress.com/2010/08/citigroup-oct-16-2005-plutonomy-report-part-1.pdf

 

American Plutocracy: Your vote doesn't count

http://www.businessinsider.com/plutocracy-reborn

 

 

 

 

Okay, so now my opinion and questions.  The wealth in this country didn't disappear, it was taken to you from the major banks and financial institutions so that they could lend it back to you with interest added.  Impressive, really.

 

This crash was caused by toxic mortgages, which were loaned to people who never should have been given loans.  This is clearly predatory lending.  And I could go on a huge rant about how 1980s deregulation and Reagonomics enacted by a charismatic leader who was elected by playing to racial fears lead to this fiasco, but I'll save that for a later rant.

 

Now, back to architecture.  With the demise of social housing, and with the fall of modernism's approach to social housing, we experienced a radical shift to conservatism in this country.  When is the last time any of us have been asked to design low-income housing, or even a mixed-income housing development?  If banks were giving out mortgages to low income (mostly minority) customers to support a housing boon in this country, then I have to ask, did we as a nation privatize the public housing sector?  And how badly has this hurt our urban environments?  Should this not be an opportunity to promote urbanism and a reformed social housing initiative?  How can we as professionals possibly reverse a 30 year trend of individualism and conservatism that continuously seems to be at odds with our urban environments?

Oct 17, 11 5:43 am
toasteroven

The author was saying that Occupy Wall Street had already won, because they've changed the conversation from just being about the deficit to finally being about the people.

 

well, the banks are the ones who mostly care about the federal deficit - I think the debate shifted to being both about "the people" and, where I think the debate should be, about banking reform.  the large wage gap directly correlates to decreased regulation of our banking system over the past 30-40 years - plus it had ripple effects on the increasing costs of higher ed and healthcare.

 

it may take some time  before the general public sees more stability and increased wages (it took almost a decade and a socially unifying war to turn things around after the great depression) - but the current reforms that recently passed aren't enough

 

This crash was caused by toxic mortgages, which were loaned to people who never should have been given loans.

 

it had very little to do with "predatory lending to low income minority people" - it was mostly due to too many people who were speculating in the housing market - people who had no business speculating in the housing market.

Oct 17, 11 12:30 pm
toasteroven

here's an interesting idea - #occupy people should buy 1 share of a bank stock then crash shareholders meetings.

 

"Investors have to speak up to the boards of directors who rubber stamp insane compensation packages," he said. "History has shown us when we have a broad disparity in wages, we've had social unrest and other problems. This is not a healthy situation."

Oct 17, 11 2:28 pm

Banks don’t care about the federal deficit, they’re not paying for it. Banks are using zero-interest loans from the government, meant to stimulate the economy by creating access to debt for consumers and businesses, to buy treasury bonds and other financial instruments for profit. Citizens are directly subsidizing bank profits.

The crash was caused by toxic mortgages, which were created for profit and to bail deregulated investment banks out of the housing bubble they created. This follows a long string of pump-and dump-schemes dating back decades. Remember the savings and loan scandal? That was just an earlier version of the housing bubble. The $90 billion in losses incurred by the failure of 25% of all US Savings and Loan “institutions” seems quite modest compared to the trillions of taxpayer dollars poured into investment banks now.

This crash was caused, like every one before it, by fiscal manipulation for gross profit. And like every one before it, the perpetrators were bailed out by citizens taxpayers and left in place to do it all over again. The government has yet to enact any meaningful legislation to prevent this behavior or even investigate those responsible for it. Why? Because it is the very foundation of the government and financial system.

We have a two party system: politicians and corporations on one side, citizens on the other. #OWS is not a political party. The people’s general assembly is – ultimately - our new government: of the people, by the people, for the people. It will only work if we participate.

Toaster: Do you really believe CNN’s (Corporate News Network) BS?

“The 99% needs to realize that it may have to partner with large investors”
 

 

Oct 17, 11 2:41 pm
newguy

it had very little to do with "predatory lending to low income minority people" - it was mostly due to too many people who were speculating in the housing market - people who had no business speculating in the housing market.

I agree that it was caused by the speculation which inflated the bubble.  I'm just noting that the market seems to have been created as a response to the US refusal to revisit social housing.

But really, the market that was manipulated is almost irrelevant at this point.  The point is that these financial institutions like Meryl Lynch and Goldman Sachs and CitiGroup and JP Morgan exist only to inflate markets that they know good and well are full of shit, and then to collect before the bubble bursts, leaving millions of ordinary citizens out of whatever wealth they may have had.

It's completely criminal, and the fact that so many people still seem to be defending the deregulation and "government is the problem" mantra really demonstrates how much they not only control our political system, but the popular discourse as well.

Oct 17, 11 2:55 pm

Wow, excellent points.  And to build on that thesis, what do you think would be one effective way to institutionalize this opaque decision making process (or the implementation of a system designed to profit a few key holders) on a population of 300 million citizens?  History has proven one method of control is to pit one group of people against another.  It's one of the oldest tricks in the book.  Sound familiar?

Also, look @ this thread, this stuff is soooooo complicated.  Is it possible that these entities have "designed" a financial system so complicated that it is completely opaque to outsiders, even regulators?  I've read some stats on how large the derivatives market really is, I see a figure of 600 trillion, but I really do not know.

All I know is I've been reading books and articles on this stuff for 5 years, and my prognosis keeps getting worse as I learn more, which is never a good sign.

Oct 17, 11 3:33 pm
newguy

And to build on that thesis, what do you think would be one effective way to institutionalize this opaque decision making process (or the implementation of a system designed to profit a few key holders) on a population of 300 million citizens?  History has proven one method of control is to pit one group of people against another.  It's one of the oldest tricks in the book.  Sound familiar?

 

3 Things seem urgent to me:

1) Re-instate Glass Steagal (The Gramm Breach Briley Act really opened the flood-gates here.  Check out this guy in 1999 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=veAOoQEy0PI  )

2) Immediately do away with the Bush Tax Cuts (Shame on you, Obama, for backing away from that campaign promise).

3) Amendment that strips "personhood" away from corporations.  Giving corporations personhood was a HUGE mistake, and really set forth the ability for corporations to ruin our economy and crush the voice of the working class.

 

These are more institutional and need to be addressed.

There needs to be some law that require banks to have Fiduciary Responsibility.  We all have it, Lawyers have it, and Doctors all have it.  None of those professionals can manipulate systems for gross profit.  Banks, for whatever reason, don't seem to have that same responsibility.  They are allowed to sell and trade derivatives for short term profit even though THEY KNOW that they are selling something that is toxic and doomed to fail in the long run.

Likewise, I'd add that there needs to be campaign finance reform.  Our politicians are bought, plain and simple, and they aren't representing their constituencies anymore, they're representing their sponsors.  Shameful.

 

I really think what we're seeing is an rising of the working class just like we did during the coal-mine town days, and the Union busting that has been present for the past 30 years have really stripped workers of their right negotiate.  I want to see a return of the Wobblies!  It already seems as if the NYPD white shirt officers have been paid to act as modern day Pinkertons, but I'm getting off point.

 

But I think those points would at least restore some confidence in our system to return us back to a more stable economic environment.  I have no problems being a working class individual with no real probability of striking it rich, I just want the security of knowing that I'm not constantly on the border of poverty.

Oct 17, 11 4:00 pm
toasteroven

Toaster: Do you really believe CNN’s (Corporate News Network) BS?

 

I don't trust the media as much as the next person, but I think disrupting a shareholder meeting is an interesting idea and deserves some consideration - even if it came from a CNN talking head.  as an aside -  using terms like that make me want to tune you out, btw - and I'm on your side - at least I think I am...

 

anyway - this past year's goldman sachs shareholder meeting - a group of nuns stood up to protest the executive compensation package and were thoroughly ignored by the board.  only about 100-200 people actually show up at these things along with some press.  If just 20 people purchased one share each at all the major banks, you'd have a significant presence.  I guess people know that the real action happens behind the scenes and the shareholder meetings are probably mostly just symbolic, but embarrassing the bank's board at a shareholder meeting might do something - at least cause other shareholders and the public to wake up a little...

 

not all of us want socialist revolution, btw - but we do want real reform in our financial system.

Oct 17, 11 4:09 pm
Rusty!

I like toast's link.

I think I have a better one. In fractional-reserve system (which we have) banks are only required to hold about 5% of the overall deposits and can loan out the rest. All we need to do is pick a random smaller bank, and get 6% of their customers to close their accounts. Bank is toast just like it happened in the '30's when there were no minimum holding requirements. Move to the next one. Don't stop until they are all gone.

I came up with this all by myself!

Will someone pat me on the head? 

Oct 17, 11 8:14 pm
Rusty!

My plan would also totally work if it weren't for the banks hoarding cash and not landing to anyone.

Assmunchers. All of 'em.

Oct 17, 11 8:15 pm
tintt

The required reserve ratio in the US is 10%. Not to be the debbie downer realist here, but without fractional reserve banking, we wouldn't be able to make any investments, therefore we wouldn't have much of anything at all.

Oct 17, 11 8:23 pm

Wait!  Don't pick a random "smaller" bank!  I bank at a small local bank that frankly I LOVE.  They treat me so well even though I'm a tiny player in their customer base.  We need to pick on the BIG guys, the ones who created this problem!

newguy I agree with you pretty much completely.  The last sentence above, deifinitely: I don't need to be rich, I just want to not be panicked at every waking moment.  (Which puts me in the mind of the last time I recall being panicked every moment: in 1983 when they showed The Day After on TV.  For a couple months all of us teenagers were convinced that any moment we'd see a mushroom cloud in the sky.  So we managed to overcome that fear via what?  Solidarnosc! I'm oversimplifying, but, you know.)

Oct 17, 11 8:37 pm
Token AE

I'm curious if all of the anon kiddies are going to do anything on November 5th. Just watched  V for Vendetta last night (don't hold it against me) and wouldn't really be surprised.

Oct 17, 11 8:58 pm
AP

101 photos (and 2 videos) from the past month:http://www.flickr.com/photos/aaronplewke/sets/72157627782247833/

some may seem mundane, but this is the effect that the protest and the NYPD's over-reaction is having on the neighborhood.  barricade city.

Oct 17, 11 10:58 pm

I recently read they have started polling the occupy movement.  Early estimates state that there is about three times the support for occupy as compared to the tea party movement. I have also noticed that much of the rederick from the Republican presidential candidates has toned down in the news lately, perhaps some are coming to realize what a formidable force this already is, and what the future impact can be on the landscape of American politics.

All I know is that when I see these issues being recognized and mentioned by senators, the president, the fed, the treasury, that is an amazing feat in itself.  When you watch these interviews, most of these people in govt are saying "I understand how the American people can be upset about this" etc...Have you seen anyone on TV getting up and defending how important and beneficial Goldman Sachs is to our society?

I think there are allot of great ideas mentioned above, for myself, I still think the most direct and productive path to change is to be an active participant in this movement and support it in any way I can.  I think these peaceful demonstrations are having a huge impact behind closed doors as they try to figure out how to respond and realize that the cover stories they propagate through the media are not taking root as they used to.

For instance, I just attended a lecture by the CFO of a company and he firmly stated we are in a depression, not a recession.  I also read a commentary in the WSJ by a very successful individual who pegs the real unemployment rate @ around 20%.

This movement will not dissipate.  It is an organic response to these problems which have been festering and growing, relatively unchallenged, for 30 years and are now here to stay. 

Please excuse my rant, I've had my morning cup of coffee and I tend to get real chatty in the am.

 

 

Oct 18, 11 10:13 am

Now I am a New Yorker and you cannot get 67% of us to agree on anything....

"According to a Quinnipiac University poll released Monday, poll respondents in New York City said by 67% to 23% that they agree with demonstrators' views. That survey, which was of 1,068 registered voters, has a sampling error of plus or minus 3%."

Oct 18, 11 10:24 am
tintt

rederick = rhetoric (not picking, but I think it's important!)

Oct 18, 11 11:06 am
polly_horne

what happens if the internet goes out?

Oct 18, 11 11:39 am

Homing pigeons

Oct 18, 11 12:29 pm
tintt

My cell phone service has been unusually shitty lately. Not sure what is going on, but it makes it a little hard to do business when every call gets dropped within the first 5 minutes. Maybe investing in homing pigeons is a good idea.

Oct 18, 11 1:28 pm
newguy

Unfortunately, I think investing in those little plastic handcuffs might also be a good choice.

Oct 18, 11 3:40 pm
design

thinking out loud:
Connecting this to architecture. Is there a relationship between progressive architecture and a destabilized social climate. I'm tempted to believe that when architecture revolves around such restless moments in history, it can produce very powerful stuff, even if the times are used as an excuse to apply new unrelated ideas.

 


Whatever it is that's going on in the world, from the Middle East, to the London riots, to Occupy wall street,(I'm not sure if all of these moments are related), if such moments can result into some 'architectural good', that would be pretty amazing.

 

Some possible applications:
-as mentioned before - setting a standard minimum wage per job, including architects
-is there a project-based approach to create an architectural response to this movement?
could such a project be a work of fiction?

Oct 19, 11 5:06 pm
Rusty!

I think I may be losing faith for my local occupy. I think it somehow self-subverted itself. Went for a visit this afternoon and the site looks great! Like a miniature city. Lots of kids running around (which makes sense as more serious sympathizers were still at work at the time). 

But in four days, these kids have already come up with a manifesto, and it kind of sucks ass. There is a protest planned for Saturday, and here it is:

"All against the corporate agenda" and then bunch of stuff about cutting social services, union-busting, mega-jails, environmental destruction, colonialism, blah blah blah. Valid topics, but a laundry list of random topics at best. I wish they would have shut their mouths until ideas were actually fully flushed out. As it is, I don't really have a strong desire to join on Saturday.

meh.

 

Oct 19, 11 7:45 pm

rusty -- Real democracy is a participatory process. You don't have to agree with everything, and odds are you won't. It may be frustrating, and it requires quite a bit of patience, but citizens rejecting vertical authroity and becoming their own government is the most positive thing I've experienced since the end of the Vietnam War.

Aside from that, what you call a manifesto looks like a decent statement of principles to me. You'd probably like it more if you participated in drafting it.

 

Oct 19, 11 10:26 pm

Yep, pretty damn scary.  And I guess it reminds me that I'm old enough to remember a time when protests were not *only* allowed to happen within designated "protest zones", but could and did happen wherever the protesters felt the need to.  Wolf (with whom I disagree about many things) is absolutely correct that this quiet underhanded over-permitification process is a way for freedom of speech, movement, and protest to be limited.  What bullshit, and how sad for us supposedly Freedom Fry lovin' Americans.

Oct 19, 11 10:28 pm
Rusty!

fair enough Miles. I wasn't disagreeing with anything that list stated, but I see a certain failure in direct democracy; an inability to easily deal with complex topics. 

Item #1: Cow goes moo. 85% of the participants agree. 

Item #2: Problem with fractional-reserve banking system is that all the central banks of first world nations gave direct control of monetary supply to private financial institutions, thus leading to an increasing wealth gap, increased cost of living, stagnant salaries, and limited career opportunities. 85% of the participants go blink-blink. 

I didn't expect the occupy movement to provide tangible solutions, but it seems that even identifying the actual problems will be somewhat impossible.

Oct 19, 11 11:25 pm
jla-x

Anyone hear that they are planning a national occupy wallstreet convention on July 4th in Philidelphia???  check out this link.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/18/occupy-wall-street-planning-convention_n_1018570.html

 

Oct 20, 11 12:42 am

Wow, looks to me like the movement is solidifying somewhat.  At my local march, I was impressed by how broad it was politically.  There were people from the far right, all the way over the left.  I think this diversity is evidence of the authenticity and honesty of this action. 

There were some folks with signs I definitely would not support.  None the less, I was there for my own "five bullet points".  I also enjoy discussing and debating these topics with my fellow citizens face to face.  What I am not interested in is rhetorical arguments and an apathetic disposition to it all.

For me, I think one underlying common thread is the idea we have a systematic failure of our government to represent and base decisions on what is best for it's citizens (fiduciary duty).

Oct 20, 11 10:47 am

Well, some more downward pointing graphs...article is here:

http://blogs.reuters.com/david-cay-johnston/2011/10/19/first-look-at-us-pay-data-its-awful/

Oct 20, 11 10:55 am

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