Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.
Saturday, October 22, 2016

The destruction of the two-month-old camp at Zuccotti Park near Wall Street in Manhattan early Tuesday morning threatened the integrity and birthplace of a movement that has spread worldwide, but the protesters are likely to hold out and continue staging new events, intent on maintaining the fresh dialogue they’ve initiated about economic inequality and corporate power even if activists remain uncomfortable with engaging like-minded elected officials on key issues.

And yet those very same elected officials, many of whom support the ideas and spirit of the protests, are wary to see the occupations continue in their backyards.

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2011 The National Memo
  • SteveHanken

    History will tell us the only way movements survive and accomplish their goals are to keep pushing forward in spite what the current situation is. When things end, they end for good. Whiskey Rebellion was the first rebellion that ended before it had addressed the problems of the farmers who were fighting mad. The last major strike was in Seattle, it ended without many results even though it brought thousands upon thousands together in the early 1900’s. We have to take this to its natural close to get results that are not fleeting. We have to take back the reigns of power and put it in the people’s hands again. If we don’t then the cops win, the power structure that will grind us under their heel has won and we are truly in slavery waiting for the crumbs to fall from the masters table to feed us and our children.

  • joanlk

    Question? Does a third marriage make Newt a better candidate. Scary!!!

  • joanlk

    We Americans are always looking for solutions. How can we improve the quality of our candidates? RE:Newt. I am baffled as to why he is even running.Unable to find justification. However,It is hard to justify any of them except Huntsman who will never make as he is too capable and sane.

  • j_berry50

    From what Ihave seen Newt knows more than that “community organizer”!

  • Totenkatz

    These protest are stupid and to compare them to other protest is irrelevant. And the American people will refuse to support a protest that violates the law and infringes on others peoples rights. Besides have you even bothered to listen to these people. I have gone to talk to the Washington DC “Occupy” protestors and I could find one coherent message that actually made sense and would work to help fix what they feel is broken on Wall Street. Most just wanted to yell at me. And hey I’m a 20 year military veteran who really did something for this country when it was needed and I’m not even a college graduate but I worked hard and make good money and don’t ask the government to fix my mistakes like my first wife.

  • andras maros

    Zuccotti Park may have been the physical manifestation of this occupation, however, the ‘essence’ of this ‘occupy’ movement cannot be evicted as it truly resides in humanities’ heart… we’ve merely been suffering from a mistaken identity; to simplify what is happening around the globe we’re tilting the ‘critical mass’ from the age of ‘reason’ to our natural state of compassion… the only security in this world is in ‘l o v i n g’ – invest and occupy (y)our heart… (andras) [email protected]

  • ecarolan

    I recently returned from Washington D.C. from a veteran’s day remembrance. During the trip my group visited The Vietnam Veterans’ Monument, and other sites that reflect our nation’s glory and agony. As we passed the White House on 15th street we came across McPherson Park and one of several ‘Occupy D.C.’ sites. We parked to see what was so exciting about the Occupy movement. I have to admit I was impressed.

    I was impressed by the filth of the encampment. Straw littered the smashed earth as if I had entered a stable. At the camps entrance was an attempt to organize. There was a welcome tent that had a sign posted of the encampments needs. They ‘needed’ D batteries, winter sleeping bags, food, cash donations and more, much more. There were hand lettered signs hung from just about everywhere that demanded an end to mortgages, school loan repayments, corporations, capitalism and on and on. There were garbage pales beyond full, and half eaten food with vomit covering pales of waste. Three men worked diligently to fasten bamboo poles into a structure that would hold a large plastic tarp. There were small tents catiwampus almost mixed in with port-o-johns. People milled about and the smell of marihuana permeated the air. A rock band played and a female love child with purple hair and a face full of metal began dancing on the sidewalk with a dread-locked man. A serious meeting was taking place under the statue of Civil War General McPherson. The Park Service had cordoned off the statue with a low steel fence intended to keep intruders off the grass; that was to no avail. One red-eyed doper yelled something like, ‘Back-Rap’. A group of several people yelled in unison ‘Back-Rap’. He yelled ‘Back-Rap’ several more times and the group chimed in like cheerleaders on a home field. Finally, he screamed something like ‘Mc Divot’ and his little following returned the scream, ‘Mc Divot’. He stumbled away with a smile that showed his brown teeth and gaps where missing teeth should have been. He was a group leader!

    Here’s what I think: some of the people were serious about trying to change America for the better. Others were 2011 anarchists out to party and still others were homeless and happy to have the company of just about anybody. And then there were the predators looking for easy prey.

    I left the ‘Occupy D.C. McPherson site’ with the simple question: what were these people trying to change? What I saw was disgusting. But, it was an example of freedom and tolerance by authorities. Also intolerance by protestors who cared not for public or private property but a mission to ‘change’ something. And they did. They changed my mind. They changed what could have been glory into agony.

  • DominickDurso

    The winter is coming, so one way or another it was inevitable. People aren’t going to live in the cold stormy weather. And they shouldn’t need to. Whats important is the work of those involved, continue to get on the internet and put pressure on the politicans, government press people and those in the 1 %. Politicians are needing there jobs. So one vote takes care of that. The press needs patrons to purchase there media. The one percent needs the 99% to buy what there selling. It all comes back to roost in some way. What Occupy does is provide the forum. The Battle is in the minds and hearts.

  • wilty707

    The OWS is ousted, the neighbors have become NIMBY’d Tories and the 1% Princes are rattling their swords. “Ah,” the pundits are declaring, ” These little vocal brats have had their say, which was basically BS impertinency from the start, and now they are now homeless urchins who should not even be seen, never mind be heard. “out damned spot!!”

    I say poo to that. The 1st Amendment, never mind how Mayor Bloomberg translates it, is still alive, and well. I am taking advantage of that right, just now as I write. I hope many will listen to what I am saying, and to countless others like me.

    We must keep uttering the message of freedom, liberty, to have a say in issues that affect our lives, equitable economic and political rights; in short, the message of what a constitutional democracy is, and that it is absolutely necessary to exercise these concepts in all of our daily affairs.

    Additionally, akin to a living organism’s given mandate that it must continue to grow and change, if it is to survive and replicate, the movement to re-establish democracy that our forefathers envisioned, must grow in diversified numbers which include people from all walks of life, organize hand in hand, and move on in to the big leagues, into the heart of the beast, essentially the established plutocracy – from the town halls all the way to the halls of congress.

    The birth of this movement might have started in the cradle of public parks, but in order to grow and become an effective and competent it must move from these confining venues, seek the appropriate environments (offices, the Internet for example) to flourish and spread the words and actions, to form a new party at a new continental congress, develop a mission and party platform, hold a convention and field candidates – whose campaign finances can be made competitive through public ($1 or more check off on individual tax returns, private donations) and by using the cheaper access to media advertising on the social webs.

    We must prepare, work hard as hell, have courage and the sense of knowing what is right is our
    main strength, and then stand up, en masse in those mighty halls and meet the opposition eye to eye and act. Yes, ACT – with humility, honesty, courtesy, dignity and integrity.

    The time is a coming, it is NOW. Long live “For the People, by the People and of the People!”

  • arconnelly

    Demonstrating for a purpose or to oppose a situation is our right as citizens. Destroying property, defecating in public, and building tent cities in public parks is not our right. What started out as an orderly but aggressive rebuttal over the inequality of political representation due to the purchasing powers of a few and requesting elimination of our tax dollars being utilized to pay bonuses to the very people who nearly bankrupted a business has deteriorated into a mob intent on doing damage and defacing public property. I was initially in agreement with the protest but am now convinced their honest actions have been taken over by anarchist and union organizers whose methodes are to promote violent activity. Hopefully, the intelligent faction of these groups will rise up against the anarchists and focus on a direct message they wish to be heard and supported by the American public.

    I do not think redistribution of wealth is the answer and sincerely hope that is not the direction this group is headed. I do believe that it is criminal for any publicly traded corporation to reward their top executives at current levels of pay and bonuses and that for those businesses a set ratio of total financial reward should be based on the average workers pay for that corporation. I also believe that any company accepting financial aid from the federal government should be barred from paying any bonuses to people within that organization until one year after they have repaid the money. I further believe that it is wrong for stock brokers and other financial managers to receive payment for trades when those trades lose money for their clients. Too many brokers are making huge profits from bad trades and this is criminal. I also believe our tax code needs to be changed to charge based on the ability to pay for personal income and reduced for businesses with the aim to retain more jobs in the US and to stop the migration of US corporations to foreign soil simply to avoid taxation. A one time amnesty on funds presently held off shore by corporations should be given along with a change in taxation to prevent future events from occurring. In lieu of the loopholes that allow corporations to take advantage of the foreign movement there should be taxation to penalize this action for US corporations.

  • Kelsi1

    Some friends and I went down to “Occupy” Denver for support. Watching it on T.V was a cry for change. When we arrived, we listened to some of the speeches, then moved down to the the place where people were holding up the signs chanting. I was amazed at all the Police Officers that were there just in case. Riot gear, plain clothed, bomb gear, police on horses, bikes. We looked down one street and there were about 15 cop cars lined up waiting for something to happen. It seemed like they were using it as a way to train and were hoping for something to happen.
    The people that carried the signs were the “Occupy” Denver group, the people in the tents we found out were the minority and most were the voice of the homeless. They have come in support, but have also planted their homes there as well. People were dropping off food, blankets, hey if I were homeless, I would stick around for all that. One less day searching for food and shelter and this is America right???
    Returning home and watching the news, the law enforcement battled once gain with tents and the people in them. Using pepper spray, rubber bullets, tear gas. I cant help but wonder if some of the Officers look forward to a day like this.
    I to am a law abiding Citizen and if the law is no camping in the Parks, then no camping in the Parks. The movement is young. Look at what the Civil Rights Movement went through. The Women’s Rights Movement. The cause is justified on many accounts. “Occupy” is still in its early stages. The future will tell us if their efforts World Wide have contributed to much needed change in the World.

  • 2lolo

    We as Americans must change the way our Government !!!!!!!!!!!! With High Unemployment and Poverty!!!!!!!!!!! The Republicans only thinking a way to get Obama out of Office and replaced by a Republican……… The Democrats is doing nothing to help..

    As all the Politicians in Washington DC and all 50 States, sitting in their office getting PAID every mouth, Health Care, Pension and Perks………… Americans who voted for them, has nothing but pain……………….

  • DianneLee

    Actually, the Occupying had served it’s purpose anyway ( and it was getting really cold) so the camp breakups probably did us a favor. When the authorities use power to destroy a peaceful protest, it brings people over to our side. And, we are probably more effective when we can pop up wherever we want to whenever we want to ( and aren’t sleep deprived). What we needed was attention. The Occupations got us that. Now they can wait for the other shoe to fall– and we got lots of shoes and getting more donated daily. Anyway, we need to work in political campaigns too– hope to see all of you there.

  • omgamike

    As has been pointed out, the occupy movement is young, but still very dynamic — and growing exponentially.
    Yes, there have been those who have shown up at various occupy sites who have been raucous and some who have been nothing but destructive in their intents. Anarchists. Those who want nothing more than to cause trouble. But the vast majority of these people are there sincerely, protesting their treatment at the hands of the 1%.
    I also agree that, in order to keep growing, they must formally organize, present citizens with a formal list of demands, then use modern technology to continue growing.
    A third party would be ideal. Field a slate of candidates all across the country, beholden to no one except the American people. The numbers of the 99% are vastly greater than those of the 1%!

  • HallRobert

    If we are to regain a Democracy, it is time to occupy Washington, not to tear down but to rebuild by making congress responsible to the citizens of The United States onece more. On both side of the political spectrum we have legislators who are not responsible or accountable. They have made themselves immune from prosecution for insider trading so they are tied to wall street on both sides. All of Congress has excellent health care and I am sure there co-pays if any are much better than any outside of the DC circle of power. We have dynastic seats in the senate and the house. Term limits of the President should be one 6 year session. Four years and two sessions for a congressman. Eight years and only one session for a Senator. Let people got to congress to improve thei union and not to enrich themselves beyond belief.

  • rj.madness

    bla, bla, woof woof. take the NAZI’S DOWN, STARTING WITH THE BUSHITTERS.

  • crystal64

    America supports occupy wall street and good good suggestion to keep you warm ware a pair of winter coveralls then over them find one of those down knee length coats get it in over size so you can tuck yourself in like a tent there not going to take your clothes away and if you can get it with a hood bring plenty of safety pins so you and your friends can join them together to make a coat tent and share each others heat show the gov they cant defeat you

  • mrkelly.burch

    Those who decry the OWS for not having a ‘message’ or ‘method’ or ‘suggestion’ are not engaging their brains to see through the seemingly endless fog of misinformation being dribbled at us by those who corrupted our democracy. Those 1% could not do what they’ve done to America without those foggy brains who refuse to question them.

    Example: everyone ‘knows’ ‘natural gas’ is clean because the industry says so. Therefore we just use it, subsidize it, pollute with it and go on about our busy lives. “Until something better comes along, what can we DO?” THAT’S the problem! NOTHING better is going to come along because the 1% will squelch it. They do it with Congress legislating innovation away. They do it by killing competitiveness while proclaiming to champion it. (Think tax breaks, waivers for environmental impact, preferential permits, ‘mitigation’, etc.)

    Figuring what it would cost to attempt to counter the bombardment of ‘mis-intell’ becomes mind numbing. The many industries in control of ‘our’ democracy won’t permit ‘government regulation’ because they’ve convinced many of us “THAT” would infringe on ‘free speech’ and government ‘is a bad thing’. So much for “WE the people” employing our government to curb the fog let alone deal with the problem! So people piss in the park instead. (What’s your beef with that? You flush your waste out to sea and that is so much better?)
    (At least no one has to ‘know’ that you are pissing and flushing! RIGHT?)

    America isn’t just ‘broke’ it is broken.
    People who broke it… and a lot more of you are just in denial of how bad this situation is. (It’s a depression, stupid) No one can buy what they cannot pay for. Congress was purchased a long while ago. We the people can no longer send a message to ‘them’ because we don’t own the mike and can’t afford our servant’s prices. Our rights have been systematically reduced to symbolically pulling the curtain when we check the block to determine which sellout is going to be getting the money from their owners. What can “WE” do? The elections are RIGGED! And getting more rigged regardless which ‘side’ wins. WE need to go pee in the park!

    You don’t pay your taxes (like Exxon, ATT or GE) and you go to jail. Congress says so. They have ‘exceptions’ called loopholes not because “WE” voted for them, but because the 1%’s servants were told by their masters and they did master’s bidding. We can protest. (And be arrested) We can boycott companies: which is like delaying flushing until the bowl is full (makes no impact) Or we can continue to ring the bell until some more of the mind numb zombies can get out of the fog… or not. Because as long as the police refuse the press access to get the story, bell ringing is likely to be ‘interpreted’ by the media sellouts to serve the message of their masters: “Don’t worry with looking out of the fog over here! Everything is fine, just some snot nosed miscreants! Your police force is working to keep you safe!” “Go vote and things will keep on just fine!”
    (But things are screwed up bad. FUBAR.)

    OWS has been telling this since it started. It is now a challenge for the movement to figure the impossible: tell people something is wrong when those people are so brain dead they can’t think beyond what they’ve been told. And the media is owned by the 1%. And the independent media is being controlled by the police.

    Okay, skip getting the word out…Then get a plan of action to direct TOWARDS that problem to fight the corporations controlling our democracy, battle a status quo during this depression and shake the brain dead to make change. Yep, it IS seemingly impossible. That’s why these occupiers are frustrated with the brain dead and sometimes want to act out. (Maybe they should start eating brains?)

    The parks were the sites occupiers could access, they belong to the people as do our forests and natural resources which are taken every day by private profiteers. Those raiders of the public realm of nature do more than piss in the forests and streams: they destroy them and our air to boot. (And they do it like bears in the woods because NOBODY notices!) But who is getting panties in a tweak over that? (OWS? …maybe?) I’ll take some poop in the park any day over mercury in my drinking water, thank you very much. (But let’s argue how you know mercury is there… how much is bad… who put it there, or is it ‘naturally occurring’???)

    Back to what is the message of OWS? The occupiers are the conscience of a growing number of people in America who have awakened to find themselves disenfranchised. They are awakening from numbness and disbelieving what they are seeing. Confused? (I guess so!) And part of what they can’t yet comprehend is that there are so many of us now awake! So many more still zombies!

    And there are even more who had started this awakening only to be numbed out, sedated, and in severe cases of denial! Upset? (You betcha, SARAH! ~You, Sarah, were part of that ‘improved’ narcotic known as ‘tea party’ distributed to people who were beginning to awake!) Sarah wanted so bad to be one of the 1%, well, god bless her bear shooting heart, she just became one!

    The ‘stro-turf Tea-party had what answers? …Make up a fiscal crisis to draw our attention from what caused the deficits (tax cuts, wars and wrecked congress), then give more tax breaks to the 1% in exchange for cutting the slackers in society who get ‘govmint wealfare’? BAACK to sleep walking. Controlled by the 1% as virtual zombies, Tea Party zealots do their incoherent bidding and voting… (stop drinking the tea) (I hear it makes you pissed)

    I love the veteran of 20 years posting above. Gave Americans their freedom to do this??? LOL, we didn’t ‘save freedom’, we served our military masters and did their bidding as their zombies. Many veterans of Iraq and Afgan are now awakened. During ‘Nam, Officers in the Marines like me, had to send kids, who didn’t have a choice of being there, into combat where they died needlessly far from home, for ‘freedom’. And at the time there were protests with people pissing in parks, fornicating in trees and being arrested because they were trying to awaken US! (Didn’t last long)

    We did a lot more than ‘pee in Viet Nam’s parks’…. But when we came home, somehow corporations had obtained the ‘right to be free of taxes’, and freedom from ‘government regulation’ was coming of age. Maybe that conflict against the ‘red menace’ was about keeping us anesthetized through distraction and polarization. It served.

    The argument about OWS not respecting ‘private property’.
    ….Grandpa, I guess you got me on that one.
    (My grandfather was a 1% who stole everything he ever got in backroom deals and dirty political moves) He used to tell me that anyone can get to be a success if you keep your nose to the grindstone. (Like he didn’t do) Actually; let’s looook at property rights and respect for same by corporations recently. And see if we didn’t just get sold a bill of goods on that account too. (Grandad was worth 450 mil when he died but he died all the same, as do all of us 99%-ers.)

    Corporations are the first to claim ‘trespass’ and the last to leave when they squat. (Think BP in the gulf) However, Big-corps which are run by the 1%, afford the best attorneys, influence and arbitration you can buy. They also own a fine legal system which follows legal theories created by politicians who are elected by corporation funded PAC ads which convince ‘voters’ how to vote… So in truth, WE, the people have always acquiesced to this misinformation, this gaming, this hostile takeover. Only now the 1% have gotten all there is to be gotten and the rest of us now being told to ‘be tough’, quit whining, people who lost homes should never have bought them, etc, etc, etc… but for god sakes, don’t stop believing in the ‘American dream’, where someday, you too might just be rich! (Sure, sure)

    The differences between a ‘legal system’ and a ‘justice system’ were recently revealed to me at the cost of a beer. (Wisdom should be so cheap in a university, student loans available at the next counter)

    The ‘property rights’ defended by police are being directed by politicians answering to their masters. Piss in the park. make a mess. be a nuisance. go one for weeks… yep, looks like property rights was the right issue to raise.

    QUESTION: Which should triumph between PROPeRTY rights and HUMAN rights? (Like freedom from being shot while unarmed?) Well, in America, PROPeRTY rights (owned by the 1%) win out. What different result could we expect? Being that ‘constitutional rights’ are so hard to define and are mainly ‘existential’ in the sense that they are different to different people, like one persons’ abortion is another person’s need for government intervention… Ah screw it, call the trash trucks, bulldoze the place and let the judge decide! (You want to be reelected, Judge? Remember who you work for…)

    What other examples of corporations observing, revering and adhering to ‘property rights’ can we find? Those of Iraqi persons killed in their homes by military contractors? BoA charging us fees for accessing our money? Or taking a home they don’t own from someone who was too stupid to see the bubble would pop? (Someone please argue that that thing is over…) Mountain top removal for coal; plants pulsing smoke, chemicals and pollutants over thousands of square miles. Chemicals pumped into our aquifers because we ‘need’ the oil? For a government ensured tax-free profit?

    How about my ‘property interests’ in my pension fund which was publicly transferred to a banking institution which exchanged those salable assets (for a fee) for worthless ‘bank stock’, selling those assets for cash (at a commission) which was gambled, aka ‘invested’, on derivatives which took a 65% HIT. The response of telling the pension beneficiaries they are too greedy to expect to get 100% of their ‘investment’ back defies the words ‘respect for property’. And the same banks are doing the same thing and spending ‘profits’ earned this way to fight regulations which were supposedly passed but now require extensive ‘definition’. (Piss in the park is beginning to smell pretty good.)

    I can’t recall if I got any bonuses or golden parachutes when I left the Marines. Money put into my pensions as largely MY money and MY negotiated benefits. Why did the guys who raided pension funds get to profit by looting pensions? BECAUSE they are part of the 1% who control America.

    I suppose if people were to exercise their ‘rights’ to extract their pension funds from those banking institutions while armed, their would be penalties! Why no criminal penalties for banks who violated the rule of law via actual and admitted fraud? Why does Wall Street have some privilege of ‘negotiations’ with the government to ‘settle’ their wrongdoing? (‘Settle’ meaning absent admission of wrong doing and absent curbs on future or ongoing wrongdoing paid from corporate funds (shareholder’s money)

    So let’s not go long nor talk highly about ‘property rights’ being trammeled by guys pissing in a park. They needed to pee. The banks didn’t need to rip us off. And we don’t have to take it in the nose. (or anywhere else)

    more later…