Oakland is an American city where police will lay a person out on a subway platform and brutally murder them with a bullet through the back. They are now firing deadly projectiles at Occupy Oakland protesters.
The use of projectiles by police against crowds is in fact a use of potentially deadly force and should be defended against as such. Any firing of a projectile toward crowds or individuals must be viewed as potentially deadly. The protesters would now seem to have a legal argument for self defense.
I predict that this protester and his injuries will soon cost the city Oakland tens of millions of dollars in damages.
That’s the thing about this movement. It’s got a lot of very smart and well-educated people involved and they have really powerful attorneys who are going to rip Oakland a great big new asshole.
Oakland police were also filmed firing projectiles at people who went to administer first aid to the seriously injured Olsen. You can see that toward the end of the following video. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen anything quiet like that, but I am very certain that the police officer who fired this projectile at people rendering assistance to an injured person can face serious criminal charges.
Yes, deregulation of the banking industry has led to absolute chaos and total criminality. It is abundantly obvious. The presidents serving since 1980 have been completely owned by corporate lobbyists, as have all senators, representatives and Supreme Court justices. I have arguments with some of the tactics of Occupy Wall Street, but I think they are very minor compared to the overall message. The separation of government from corporations has become an urgent necessity and does in fact require a mass movement of people across the placid lawns of government. Politicians should be examined for any corporate connections whatsoever and immediately dismissed if they fail the test. Corporations should be checked for any attempts at electoral influence. A Constitutional amendment that declares corporations to be nothing more than legal abstractions and forbids them from influencing the federal government is essential. After all, corporations seek to produce products at the lowest possible cost and currently do so by using concentration camps in China. They would gladly build those concentration camps in the U.S. if it was cost-effective. Such entities cannot be allowed the slightest influence on American politics. We may be forced to totally ban all political contributions that do not come directly from an individual person.
Does anyone pay attention to what is being said when this ‘1%’ thing is thrown around?
Here’s a direct quote from the OccupyWallSt.org About page and must therefore be the definitive statement of the movement’s intentions:
‘The movement is inspired by popular uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia, and aims to expose how the richest 1% of people are writing the rules of an unfair global economy that is foreclosing on our future.’
If you replace ‘richest 1% of people’ with different words like ‘Muslims’ or ‘Jews’ or ‘Whites’ or ‘Blacks’ or ‘Poor People,’ wouldn’t you have a serious problem?
Why is it that Occupy Wall Street can define a 1% minority out of a population and engage in open hostility and bigotry toward them? Bigotry against a part of a population is bigotry no matter what the rationale for it happens to be. Occupy Wall Street is not talking about corrupt rich people. It is not talking about criminals. It is talking about ALL rich people. It is equating wealth with villainy.
It should be obvious that not all of the richest people are in fact helping to write unfair rules. Michael Moore is rich. Is he writing some of the unfair rules?
Why is Occupy Wall Street unable to confine its hostility to actual policy?
In Germany, during the buildup of Nazism, people grew increasingly angry toward the wealthy and then turned that anger toward Jewish people. Angry crowds, encouraged to chant mantras and direct hostility toward groups that they define as evil become extremely dangerous when exposed to a charismatic leader who is willing to exploit them.
I do not oppose constructive change of policy to make the economic situation more fair and to prevent the corporate control of government. But I do oppose the fundamental and defining aspect of Occupy Wall Street which is to associate a particular group of people with a generic and unspecified evil.
I went down to the demonstration to make a film. I liked the people there. They were very focused and happy. They were talking, explaining, arguing, educating, dancing, singing, playing, making signs, painting, photographing. Some of them made speeches at the microphone. Some read poems. There were lots of cameras.
The music and words in this film are by Tom Morello (http://nightwatchmanmusic.com), former Rage Against the Machine guitarist. He sings his own ‘Maximum Firepower’ and Woody Guthrie’s ‘This Land is Your Land.’
The mood at City Hall was high energy and cheerful. The underlying anger and frustration of the movement seemed to be moving through a positive channel. It was exciting but also comfortable there because of the people and their open attitudes.
The Los Angeles police headquarters is directly across the street from the protest grounds. That’s where I began shooting my film – right into the windows of police headquarters. Several squad cars drove up First Street, but there was not a single cop anywhere near the protest area. The crowd is organized and respectful, but also very serious about its messages which are various and multifaceted.
The city has taken a protective stance over its protesters. I’m very proud of Los Angeles for this.
Occupy Los Angeles is one of the spreading protests coming out of the Occupy Wall Street protest in New York. Hopefully, the incredible momentum of the movement will continue and be heard very clearly across the country and the world.
The simple messages that I get from the protests are that government cannot function while it is under the control and influence of corporations. The economy cannot function properly while corporations and their extremely wealthy owners are allowed to operate without oversight and control. The country cannot pave its roads or build its schools or house its people while corporations and the wealthy play with money that is nearly tax-free, removing it entirely from the real world economy. The country cannot function as a democracy while its politicians and Supreme Court justices are working for corporations. The country cannot be free while racism and bigotry are increasingly seen as legitimate reactions to change. The country cannot be secure while corporations are given the power to run wars and people’s basic privacy rights are removed.
That’s what I see in the Occupy movement.
If every city in the U.S. could have as fine an Occupy movement as Los Angeles, they would be very lucky indeed.
This film shows how the protesters of the Occupy Wall Street movement organize themselves in lower Manhattan. They seem to be forming something like a little community with food services, minor first aid, a library, battery charging and even video editing services for all the people covering the action. These people are working hard and have an uncommon seriousness about them. This is something new. These are mainly young people. They are waking up from iPod oblivion and showing the world that they can make a difference in a democracy decayed by a corporate stranglehold over the government. These are people who can see that corporate management structures have totally occupied and taken over the United States government all the way up to and including its Supreme Court. In fact, there is no other way to dismantle this criminal structure. It can only be broken up by massive groups of angry protesters who simply never stop coming.
Django’s Ghost has posted a stirring and rather enthralling video compilation of the ongoing and exploding phenomenon known as Occupy Wall Street. The film is set to several rock & roll protest songs and it gets across the feelings of rising anger and the public’s growing awareness that it can in fact stop the corporate takeover of the United States.
The protesters seem to me to be a rather intelligent and well-behaved crowd. Some of the New York police however appear to be overeager. Cops always end up on the wrong side of these things. They never get it right. Many of them seem to be pretty easy-going, but there are always the brutes that come stomping in and make a mess of things.
I love the way the crowd is so heavily armed with photographic equipment. The protesters are their own journalists!
This movement is spreading quickly. It’s come to Los Angeles at City Hall and is springing up in other cities as well. People are angry about the corporate takeover of their country and their Supreme Court. Losing a President to corporate interests is one thing. That is rather expected. Obama jerked us all around and then turned into a cheeseball from General Motors. But when our Supreme Court gets bought out and turns into a boardroom… well, that is a terrifying problem. That is just about the end of the line. A democracy cannot survive the corruption of the judicial branch.