Posts Tagged ‘media’

Occupy Boston: Smart, Savvy, and Aiming to Emulate Wall Street Protests


Occupy Boston: Smart, Savvy, and Aiming to Emulate Wall Street Protests

About 200 people in Boston express their outrage at America’s economic woes – and promise to take up the protest baton

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Posted 28 September 2011, by Paul Harris, The Guardian, guardian.co.uk

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There were socialists, anti-poverty campaigners, students, anarchists, computer hackers, the unemployed, and workers ranging from a vet to an accountant.

And, numbering around 200 and meeting to plot until late in the night, a group of Bostonians have decided to recreate the anti-Wall Street protests that are gripping New York.

Unlike previous attempts, such as a march that fizzled out in Chicago with just 20 people, the people behind Occupy Boston showed a strong dose of media savvy and organizational skill on Monday night, as they drew a committed crowd of volunteers to their cause: to occupy a slice of the city. Local TV crews were in attendance at the evening mass planning meeting, and it had been flagged on the front pages of Boston’s newspapers.

The move raises the first serious prospect of the Wall Street protests spreading beyond New York and comes as other events are also being planned in Los Angeles and Washington.

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Organiser Marissa Egerstrom addresses the Boston general assembly
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The crowd of Bostonians listened and spoke about their anger at the ills in the capitalist system in general and the financial industry in particular.

Gathering in the center of Boston Common, in the heart of the city, they heard various speakers promise to copy the New York protests. “Tonight we begin to show the world how to live in freedom and peace. Right here, right now, a new life is starting,” said Marissa Egerstrom, one of the organizing forces behind Occupy Boston.

Those were big words to say in front of just 200 people. But Occupy Boston aims to emulate Occupy Wall Street protesters, whose seizure of a downtown Manhattan park was first ignored by most of the media but has now generated headlines around the world, especially after police used pepper spray against peaceful women demonstrators.

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Matthew Krawitz explains why he is joining the Boston protest
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Many of those gathered on the Common, including nearly all the key organizers, had been to New York to witness the protests. One organizer, Matthew Krawitz, who brought his two daughters to the Common, had been in Manhattan for the first day of the protests there. Now the unemployed IT expert was helping set up something similar in Boston. “I’m here to give them a better future,” he said, referring to his two children.

In style and substance, Occupy Boston closely followed that of Occupy Wall Street, which was itself inspired by recent social movements in Spain and Arab countries. After the speeches different tactical groups were formed – covering everything from legal affairs to food to medical to media outreach – to prepare for the coming occupation.

Potential sites to be occupied included the Common itself and Dewey Square in Boston’s financial district. Potential dates were also picked, with some as soon as this coming weekend. The separate groups operated in a “leaderless” style that dragged on in often circular debates but were impressive for eventually coming to collective agreement.

The meetings lasted for several hours in the park, as crowds listened to rabble-rousing speeches and critiques of capitalism. It promised a striking protest to come, but at times offered an incongruous vision of Boston. Ringing the common where the protesters met are some of the most upmarket streets in the city, lined with million-dollar townhouses. And on the park itself, virtually next door to where scores of people talked of forcefully bringing down American capitalism, fellow Bostonians enjoyed games of tennis on brightly lit late-night courts, seemingly oblivious to what was going on in the darkness just 50 yards away.

But what was never in doubt among the disparate participants was a sense of outrage and injustice at America’s current economic woes. Bob Norkus, 54, had been out of work for a year. He has one simple desire. “Things need to be realigned. It’s 99 percent of us versus one percent of them. This is still a democracy if we care to grab it,” he said.

There were people with jobs in the crowd, too, and they were equally angry. Cynthia Brennan, 41, is a veterinary nurse. She had been inspired to come to the common by watching the popular revolts of the Arab Spring. “I was fascinated by Egypt. I was in front of al-Jazeera all the time. It needs to happen here,” she said.

Local government accountant Tim Larkin, 28, agreed. But he wanted to improve on the New York protests in Boston. “We have to be better than New York and have a stronger set of demands,” he said.

© Guardian News and Media Limited 2011
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Occupy Wall Street: Nine Conversations and a Protest Song

 

Occupy Wall Street: Nine Conversations and a Protest Song

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Posted27 September 2011, byEdward Champion, Reluctant Habits, edrants.com

 

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Please visit the original site to listen to multiple audio tracks (the conversations and the song) associated with this article

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On Tuesday afternoon, I discovered this report from NPR Ombudsman Edward Schumacher-Matos. NPR hadn’t aired a single story in relation to the Occupy Wall Street riots, which I had reported about on Sunday in relation to the pepper spraying incident. I decided to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge and attend the protests myself. What follows are nine conversations I had with various individuals at the protests.

Douglas: “I’m here because I’m American. I was born here in New York. I was born here in Manhattan.”

Jeff and Miike came from Colorado.

Miike: “We came on Sunday specifically for this. And we decided we wanted to come down for the week also.”
Jeff: “We had already planned a trip to New York. And then they were talking about it on the radio station that I listen to in Denver. And they were saying there’s a total media blackout on this whole thing. And so I said I’m going to go down there. I called them up and said I’m going to go down there.”

Dorjee: “I hope it brings it down completely and we get a completely new system of human respect with viable resources and fair trade, instead of I lend you. You, you need a thousand dollars. Okay, I’ll give you a thousand dollars if you pay me back $1,000 plus $200.”

Me to Dorjee: “Be careful with that fist. Because you’re trying to be peaceful, right?”

Marvin was holding a sign that read JESUS IS NOT FOR CORPORATE GREED. What will the protest actually do?

Marvin: “It will make people more aware that we live in a capitalist system where more people are living in poverty than ever. And the most ironic part of it is that it’s a capitalist system, but we live off the Communists. We have to borrow money from Communists to even exist.”

Mary was a tourist who had stopped by Liberty Square on the last day of her vacation.

Mary: “I’m surprised it hasn’t happened earlier. Now it has. I started following it on Twitter. And then I thought I’d come down and see what was happening.”

Ed and Robin came to the protests all the way from West Virginia.

Robin: “The corporations have done a great job in dividing people, separating people into issues. People are coming together here and realizing that we have much more in common with each other than we do with the people who are trying to sell us on what a good way of life is here.”

Ed and Robin were also kind enough to perform their song “Let ‘Em Eat Cake” for me. Here is Uncle Eddie & Robin’s website.

Roman carried a sign calling for President Paris Hilton and had some unusual ideas about making sex appeal a more predominant characteristic than others.

Roman: “I’m an aspiring, you know, Paris Hilton. I want to just be able to live and party. I live with my parents right now but we don’t have much money. And I think that if Paris Hilton becomes President, you know, she can help everybody just party.”

Brian worked very close to Liberty Square. He was checking out the protests on his lunch break.

Brian: “This is funny anyway. [indicating sign] I mean, who hasn’t tried to go to school looking for a job when they first get out of school. I mean, that’s what we all do. It’s hard to find a job. But, like anything, you continue to look and try until you find one and do what most of us have done.”

[EDITORIAL NOTE: Please note that an earlier version of this story misidentified the “Steven Levy” as “Wired senior writer Steven Levy.” Reluctant Habits expresses its apologies to Wired‘s Steven Levy and greatly regrets the error.]

As I was circling Liberty Square and talking with many people about what it meant to protest, I observed an older man berating a young man going by the name of Matt. It was the only contentious banter I had observed in what was otherwise a peaceful gathering — complete with donated food, plentiful signs laid along the ground, activists singing protest songs on banjos and guitars, and even a library established in close proximity to the main dais.

I was curious about what had caused this older man to lose his gasket. Because while I had talked with people who did not approve of the protest (including some cops who declined to go on the record, but all NYPD officers I observed were calm and professional), the older man was the only one prepared to go ballistic. This being a public space, I naturally began recording audio and approached the shrieking man, hoping that I might use this moment to generate a civil discussion. But the man, who identified himself as “Steven Levy” (not to be confused with the Wired senior writer) wasn’t especially interested in explaining to me why he was upset at Matt.

“He and I were just talking with another woman,” explained Matt after the exchange. “And I think they’re more on the liberal interventionist side of the economic policies — at least in terms of their opinions. And I was like saying, ‘Look, I’m personally against Keynesianism. Because I think Keynes is all about government spending. And I don’t believe government is a good allocator of spending.’”

This position apparently infuriated Levy. When I approached Levy and Matt, Matt was explaining to Levy that the two of them were on the same side. Levy responded, “You don’t read well.”

I decided to intervene. I merely wanted to know what Matt was misrepresenting. The results can be listened to below:

Please visit the original site to listen to multiple audio tracks (the conversations and the song) associated with this article

About Edward Champion

Edward Champion is the Managing Editor of Reluctant Habits.

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http://www.edrants.com/occupy-wall-street-nine-conversations-and-a-protest-song/

Occupy Wall Street downloadable Posters

Occupy Wall Street downloadable Posters

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Posted 27 September 2011, by angelbabe43, Angelbabe43’s Blog, angelbabe43.wordpress.com

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The posters provided on this page are free for you to download, print, and hang up within your community, not only to promote local efforts, but the solidarity occupiers around the country. In fact, we highly encourage it as this will be a great means of spreading the word and getting others involved.

All of the posters on this page have been graciously donated to the cause by graphic designers who have contacted us and sent us materials. If you would like to contribute, please feel free to send us your work

To download, just right click and save the poster (an Acrobat PDF) to your hard drive.

Poster by Raina Dayne

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Poster by Raina Dayne

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Poster by Raina Dayne

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Poster by Raina Dayne

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Poster by Raina Dayne

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Poster by Raina Dayne

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Poster by Raina Dayne

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Poster by Sam

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Poster by Sam

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Poster by Sam

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Poster by Sam

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Poster by Sam

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Poster by Mark P.

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Poster by Mark M.

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http://occupytogether.org/downloadable-posters/

Related articles

http://occupytogether.org/

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http://angelbabe43.wordpress.com/2011/09/27/occupy-wall-street-downloadable-posters/

The Occupy Portland Model

The Occupy Portland Model

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Posted 26 September 2011, by , Occupy Together, occupytogether.org

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We’ve witnessed an exponentially growing list of communities that are banding together with our brothers and sisters on Wall St. by organizing solidarity actions in their cities. This rise in support has been incredibly inspiring and has promoted many of you to become active in organizing an event in your area. Through the enthusiasm and excitement of wanting to show your support you are all working diligently to organize events in a short amount of time. As we have followed some of theses group’s efforts we’ve seen many different approaches to organizing. We’ve also fielded many questions on advice and how to information on effectively organizing. We wanted to feature Portland as an example for those of you would like a model to follow or to take from as they have done a great job joining and organizing efforts in a very short amount of time. Of course, each group dynamic is going to vary and what worked for Portland may not work for you, but at least this will give you an idea of how others are doing it.

A couple of members from Portland filled us in on their process:

Basically it all comes down to networking and extensive planning. The initial construction of the Occupy Portland Facebook group was backed by some pretty frequent tweeting. Once we started getting a huge following, there were more and more discussions popping up on the Facebook group. We were discussing where it should be, what Portland laws were regarding “urban camping”, as well as a number of other concerns. We then held a General Assembly to further organize where were all in consensus with our future actions and demonstration details. After we compiled notes from the GA, we discussed them further on the Facebook group. Once we had the frame work of what everyone wanted and expected we set up a Facebook page and web site to better organize and announce future details.

Sending messages to those working at Occupy Wall Street was definitely helped us gain notice. People are heavily following #occupywallstreet, #takewallstreet, #usdor, as well as a number of other widely used hash tags. Each tweet sent out would include a tag with a trending tag, my city (#pdx) as well as a link to the facebook group.

Also we paid attention to the amount of followers people had, and mentioned them as well.

Portlanders were watching, so they were bound to jump on board once they knew about a protest here. Nearly all of us are using Twitter, so they used the same approach when spreading the group link around the internet.

Advice using Facebook:

We first started a Group that opened up discussion to hear out everyone’s ideas, concerns and thoughts on how they could help. This was a very important stage in our organizational efforts.

General Assembly:

I think the most important thing for us was using the General Assembly model and making each decision everyone’s decision. This helped us remain unified. Legal assistance, bike deliveries, medics, photographers, people who can stream the protest, and similar topics were brought up. We covered nearly all the bases, and most of us left with a pretty hefty amount of notes. Notes from the General Assembly were posted online on a page for everyone in the Portland group to see.

Legal Advice:

Contact your local National Lawyers Guild early on for legal advice in your area. We are holding a seminar with the National Lawyers Guild so that we can become versed in the proper execution of a demonstration like this. They have confirmed that legal observers will be present during our demonstration. We are also planning to hold a meeting with them where we discuss the importance of nonviolence and the proper way to conduct oneself in civil disobedience.

Additional Thoughts:

It’s extremely important to make sure extensive preparation goes into a something this big. Some people have certain contacts who would be useful, others are volunteering to do a specific job. It all comes as we address what needs to be seen and done upon Occupation.

We stressed something several times: this needs to remain non-violent. Remaining peaceful helps the overall image of this nationwide movement. If things do become violent, we acknowledge that staying calm only helps the cause. If we have arrests then we will have the footage immediately uploaded. It helps those in NYC by showing that the cops are abusing our rights, and that this thing is nothing like the misleading media says.

Helpful Links: 

nycga.net Find up to date information on the NYC General Assembly.

occupywallst.org News, video feed, forum & chat.

http://nycga.cc/2011/09/24/principles-of-solidarity-working-draft/ Working Draft of the Principles of Solidarity

www.nlg.org National Lawyers Guild

Ongoing Events

  • Occupy Chicago (Ongoing)
    September 23, 2011
  • Occupy Denver (Ongoing)
    September 25, 2011

Upcoming Events

  • Occupy Birmingham (Planning Meeting)
    September 27, 2011 10:00 am
  • Occupy San Diego (Second General Assembly and Planning Meeting)
    September 27, 2011 6:00 pm
  • Occupy Omaha (First General Assembly)
    September 27, 2011 7:00 pm
  • Occupy Boston (First General Assembly)
    September 27, 2011 7:30 pm
  • Occupy Lexington (KY)
    September 29, 2011 12:00 pm
  • Occupy San Francisco
    September 29, 2011 3:00 pm
  • Occupy Philly (Planning Meeting)
    September 29, 2011 6:00 pm
  • Occupy Kansas City
    September 30, 2011 9:00 am
  • Occupy D.C.
    October 1, 2011 9:00 am
  • Occupy Sacramento
    October 1, 2011 10:30 am
  • Occupy San Jose
    October 2, 2011 12:00 pm
  • Occupy Las Vegas
    October 6, 2011 12:00 am

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http://occupytogether.org/2011/09/26/the-occupy-portland-model/

Noam Chomsky Announces Solidarity With #occupywallstreet

 

Noam Chomsky Announces Solidarity With #occupywallstreet

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Posted 26 September 2011, by OccupyWallSt, Occupy Wall Street, occupywallst.org

 

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Anyone with eyes open knows that the gangsterism of Wall Street — financial institutions generally — has caused severe damage to the people of the United States (and the world). And should also know that it has been doing so increasingly for over 30 years, as their power in the economy has radically increased, and with it their political power. That has set in motion a vicious cycle that has concentrated immense wealth, and with it political power, in a tiny sector of the population, a fraction of 1%, while the rest increasingly become what is sometimes called “a precariat” — seeking to survive in a precarious existence. They also carry out these ugly activities with almost complete impunity — not only too big to fail, but also “too big to jail.”

The courageous and honorable protests underway in Wall Street should serve to bring this calamity to public attention, and to lead to dedicated efforts to overcome it and set the society on a more healthy course.

Noam Chomsky

 

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https://occupywallst.org/article/noam-chomsky-solidarity/

At Least 100 DHS Funded Chemical And Biological Response Unit Surrounding Occupy Wall Street Protesters

At Least 100 DHS Funded Chemical And Biological Response Unit Surrounding Occupy Wall Street Protesters

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Posted 25 September 2011, by Staff, The Intel Hub, theintelhub.com

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UPDATE: 11:57pm EST – I have just confirmed with our on the scene reporter that there were over 100 Chemical and Biological Response Units stationed all around Liberty Park.

The idea that these were just a few Marine tourists is 100% disinformation. These units were stationed near the protests ON PURPOSE.

This was NOT just the small unit shown in the video below.

Note: Both the Facebook and Twitter buttons above have, out of no where, restarted. The likes were above 600 and the tweets were over 140.

Chemical and Biological Response Units funded by the Department Of Homeland Security have been confirmed to be on the scene in NYC possibly converging on the Occupy Wall Street Protesters.

The units were seen and filmed watching the protesters as if their appearance was a completely normal occurrence in a supposed democracy.

It remains to be seen exactly why these units are there, but it would seem to indicate that the police are either worried about the protesters using chemicals or are planning to use chemicals on the crowds themselves.

Considering the fact that the Occupy Wall Street protesters have no chemical or biological weapons,(that we know of) the only need for these type of response units is if the government planned to either let loose chemicals to blame on the protesters or if they plan on using chemicals on them.

Fundraiser To Help Us Cover The Costs Of On The Scene Reporters At The Occupy Wall Street Protests – This Info Came From On The Scene Reporting!

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From YouTube Description:

Personally interviewed and confirmed with members of the unit they are DHS, and they will not give straight answers for why they are here.

Pretty embarrassing for some of them.

Note: Some people have claimed that these response units were Marine tourists who just happened to walk by. We are investigating this claim.

If this claim is true it would be a huge coincidence that at this point seems to be highly unlikely. If they are a Marine Corps unit then it would actually be under the DOD but could still have anti terrorism funding from the Department Of Homeland Security.

Regardless whether they are DHS or DOD, the fact that this unit thinks its funny to scare and intimate a group of peaceful protesters shows you deep the police state we now find ourselves in actually is.

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In regards to who the protesters actually are I would like to point out the fact that just because the Unions and liberal groups started the Occupy Wall Street protests does NOT mean that all the people speaking out against the banks in NYC are somehow Communists.

We have confirmed that MANY of the protesters are anti Federal Reserve Ron Paul supporters!

The fact that the controlled right wing blogsphere is labeling the whole protest as Communist shows once again how anti freedom these neo con blogs actually are.

Article Updated at 10:06pm EST to reflect new information and speculation that has come to light.

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http://theintelhub.com/2011/09/25/dhs-funded-chemical-and-biological-response-unit-surrounding-occupy-wall-street-protesters/

Media Arrested at Wall Street Protest!

 

Media Arrested at Wall Street Protest!

Marissa Homes Arrested for Filming Arrests by Public Domain Image from YouTube

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Posted 25 September 2011, by Mark Adams JD/MBA, OpEdNews (OEN), opednews.com

 

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Originally posted on the Daily Censored at this link, but updated with new information.

Current reports indicate that up to 100 arrests have been made at the Wall Street protest.  Those arrested are reported to include members of the media team posting the live video on Livestream. See the live video feed of the peaceful ongoing occupation of Wall Street at this link.

Marissa Holmes, a member of the team posting video on the live feed on Livestream, shown in the photo above, was arrested for filming arrests.  Here is a short video of that plus a report on the various reasons for the protests.

Most of the police have not been interfering with the protesters, and many have expressed support for the protesters’ concerns.  However, the media team has reported that a team of police destroyed cameras and laptops being used to broadcast the protest, and it has reported that some police have indicated that they may order the protesters to clear the square after dark or face arrest.  Apparently, those statements were made after the mass of arrests in order to intimidate the protesters and to try to break up the protests.

Sources report similar protests are occurring in cities across the United States including Los Angeles and Chicago and the rest of the world. Naturally, the “news” media cartel is continuing to do its best to cover up the protests and the banksters’ crimes.

The banksters have committed fraud in loan origination, securitization, servicing, and foreclosure to steal the homes of millions of Americans. See this report by Florida’s Attorney General.

Unfortunately, the banksters’ looting spree is not over. They are in the process of stealing millions more Americans’ homes right now. See how widespread the banksters’ looting spree really is at this link.

By the way, the banksters’ minions in government are paying the banksters to foreclose. See this report and this report.

Don’t think that the banksters will not try to steal your home, too. They have even tried to foreclose on homes with no mortgages. See this report by the Daily Show and subscribe to this news outlet for the latest foreclosure news.

Get out and protest the banksters’ looting spree before they steal your home, your life savings, and impoverish us all. Remember, if you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem, so do something to help.  Even little things can help such as emailing the link to this article to your contacts, calling your local TV news departments and asking them why they aren’t covering the protests, calling your government representatives and asking them why they are doing nothing while banks are breaking the law to steal homes, organizing or attending a protest in your city, or donating to the protesters in New York.

If you want to know how the banksters get away with their crimes, see Why Does the Government Ignore Our Wishes? and don’t miss my short speech. If you take a look, you’ll learn why those in government and those who can illegally influence them get away with violating our rights, abusing their power, and committing horrible crimes. My article on torture includes a link to the U.S. Supreme Court case which explains how one of our stolen rights makes the difference between justice and injustice, between freedom and slavery.

– Mark A. Adams JD/MBA

Notice: You may copy and post this article on other web sites if you include a link to the original article.

 

I am active in the election, judicial and media reform movements. I obtained the first injunctions getting a third party candidate into debates, and I have handled more Congressional election contests than any other attorney. I practiced law (more…)

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author
and do not necessarily reflect those of OpEdNews or its editors.

 

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http://www.opednews.com/articles/Media-Arrested-at-Wall-Str-by-Mark-Adams-JD-MBA-110925-476.html

An Open Letter from Occupy Wall Street to All Americans and Progressive Media

An Open Letter from Occupy Wall Street to All Americans and Progressive Media

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Posted 25 September 2011, by AngelBabe43, Angelbabe43’s Blog, angelbabe43.wordpress.com

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Please join us:

This is an open letter to all Americans, and particularly to progressive magazines, Web Sites, TV programs, etc.  Please spend most of your time focusing on the Occupy Wall Street protests.  This is real, this is serious, and this will become a mass movement.  I have been here every day for the past week.  Everyone is dedicated and determined.  People have come from all over the country, and they plan to stay for months.  Many have been sleeping outside, on the floors of Zuccotti Park, and others have been arrested, sacrificing their comfort for the most important of all causes.  It’s safe to assume the mainstream media either will not cover the demonstrations at all or will do so only to ridicule us.  But liberal media outlets must get on board.  If you do not, you are essentially useless.

As a journalist myself, I know the only reason any serious progressive does reporting is because he or she wants to motivate people to get off the couch and hit the streets.  We journalists write articles, participate in TV segments, appear in documentaries…  For what?  To inform people of how they’ve been enslaved by the corporate state.  And to make them understand that they have the power to restore their democracy if they choose to.

If we in the media don’t do our part we might as well not exist.  If we don’t cover these protests day and night to try to mobilize a revolution, then we are just complainers.

Some have done good work.  As always, Democracynow! has done excellent reporting.  I also commend Keith Olbermann, who in his special comment after the debt deal admonished that all we have left is civil disobedience.  He has reported on our movement and called attention to the shameful lack of coverage elsewhere.

But overall, I have found the left’s coverage extremely disappointing.  Important publications, such as the Nation, Salon, Huffington Post, Truthdig, etc., have done far too few stories on Occupy Wall Street.  The protests must be front page material, every day.

We need prominent attention.  Right now there are a few hundred of us, which in itself is impressive and meaningful.  But we must channel this energy into a mass movement.  There’s no reason why thousands of people shouldn’t be here with us right now, as this country is reeling from staggering unemployment, mass poverty, a broken health care system that leaves tens of thousands to die for lack of coverage, and unprecedented concentration of wealth and power.  It’s a matter of getting the word out and making people understand why Occupy Wall Street is the most important thing to happen in America in a long time, perhaps even more so than the Wisconsin strikes.  Wisconsin, as inspiring and important as it was, centered upon a specific issue—collective bargaining rights and the corporate assault on unions; Occupy Wall Street revolves around much broader issues, primarily the very notion of democracy itself.

If everyone works together we can mobilize huge chunks of the population, force change and make demands.  It is possible.  It’s up to us.  Every pundit, every writer, every filmmaker, every talk show host, every TV personality must do what they can to help.  Famous figures who can mobilize their fans must bring as many people here as possible.  If you can’t make it to New York City, you can still contribute.  Check out our Web Site and follow us from there.  Talk about what’s going on.  Call people you know in New York for first-hand accounts if possible.

And most important, every American out there can participate.  Everyone reading this article can contribute.  If you’re not from New York and can’t make it, show solidarity by checking out our Web Site and donating some money to help us pay for food and other necessities.  Tell friends you have in New York to come out and join us.  Try to picket a branch of a big bank in your area.

Every day I go out to Zuccotti Park I am in awe of what I see.  Occupy Wall Street consists mainly of young citizens who are serious about their democracy and their future, and we are leading the way.  Hope does not come from the White House.  It will not come from Congress.  It will not come from the United Nations.  And as the execution of Troy Davis proves yet again, it certainly will not come from the Supreme Court.  Our only option is civil disobedience.  If we the people don’t stand up for ourselves with non-violent, peaceful protest, nobody will.  The corporate elite are counting on you to stay passive and let Occupy Wall Street fizzle out.  This is our chance.  It’s up to us.  Occupy Wall Street has lit a spark.  Will we set the country aflame?

http://www.livestream.com/globalrevolution?lsci_op=100001044655361

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Occupy Wall Street Protests
* Latest video from RT: http://youtu.be/Ct2G9G8sZdA
* http://www.OccupyWallSt.org
* http://www.livestream.com/globalrevolution
* http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wLoB1eCJ93k
* http://www.adbusters.org/blogs/adbusters-blog/occupywallstreet.html

We Demand more coverage!

CNN 404.827.1500

MSNBC(212) 664-4444

Post These Everywhere!

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http://angelbabe43.wordpress.com/2011/09/25/an-open-letter-from-occupy-wall-street-to-all-americans-and-progressive-media/

Cree George Poitras: Ottawa Tarsands Action Monday

Cree George Poitras: Ottawa Tarsands Action Monday

OTTAWA TARSANDS ACTION – Why am I attending?

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Posted 24 September 2011, by George Poitras, Censored News, bsnorrell.blogspot.com

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George Poitras is a former Chief, Mikisew Cree First Nation

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George Poitras

In the past year and even more so in the past few weeks a lot of debate has focused on the tarsands in northeastern Alberta as “ethical oil.” Advertisements taken out on the Oprah Winfrey Network by EthicalOil.org, why Oprah Winfrey has endorsed this propaganda by big oil is anyone’s guess?! The advertisement suggests why should America be dependent on Saudi Arabian oil, “a state that doesn’t allow women to drive, doesn’t allow them to leave their homes or work without their male guardian’s permission.” That there is a better alternative, “Ethical oil from Canada’s oil sands.” Apparently meaning a more human alternative.

Names synonymous of this “ethical oil” notion include Alykhan Velshi, Ezra Levant. Proponents who happily began to espouse the controversial two words include Canadian politicians like environment minister Peter Kent and prime minister Stephen Harper as they traverse the globe promoting investment in the tarsands.

The tarsands have been mined, primarily open-pit, for the past 40 years in what is known as the traditional lands of many Treaty 6 and Treaty 8 First Nations. The total tarsands deposit, the size of England, is known to be the second largest oil deposit in the world, second to Saudi Arabia. Only 3% of the total deposit has been mined in the past 40 years and Dr. David Schindler, a world renowned water expert, proved last year that there has been virtually no monitoring of what has also been characterized the largest industrial project in the world. A claim that the local Indigenous peoples have made for decades with proof of deformed fish, observation of poor water quality, receding water levels, impacts to animal health, and more recently in Fort Chipewyan, an increase in rare and aggressive cancers.

Tarsands a humane alternative?

When local physician Dr. John O’Connor raised concerns of disproportionate numbers of unusual cancers in Fort Chipewyan in 2006, the government of Canada, or physicians from the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch lodged complaints against him including a charge of “causing undue alarm” to residents of my community of Fort Chipewyan. Canada’s charges against a family physician has never before been heard of in the history of Canada. For my community of Fort Chipewyan, this unprecedented action by the government of Canada essentially signaled to us that Canada didn’t care what claims Dr. O’Connor was making or that people in Fort Chipewyan might be living in a situation with an epidemic of rare and aggressive cancers. The claims were eventually proven by an Alberta Cancer Board Study in 2009 because of our unrelenting efforts; perhaps we shamed the Canadian and Alberta governments into doing so by successfully making our concerns a part of the international debate of this “dirty oil” campaign and not because the governments felt it was the “ethical” or “humane” thing to do.

Despite this, both the Alberta and Canadian governments continue to this day, to deny there is any concern with cancers in Fort Chipewyan.

The governments of Alberta and Canada have for the past 15 years relied on the Regional Aquatics Monitoring Program (RAMP) to monitor the Athabasca River and the fish health. Every study since then has concluded that there was little to no impacts from tarsands development on the water or the fish health. A position that was proven wrong by Dr. David Schindler. Essentially, the RAMP which is 100% funded by the oil companies and who’s data is proprietary, and the Alberta and Canadian governments have been lying to the downstream impacted communities but also to Albertans and Canadians. They both shamefully admitted this following Schindler’s study just days before Christmas in 2010.

Fishermen in Fort Chipewyan have been saving deformed, tumoured, discoloured, and other problem fish for many years. Many residents in my community have chosen not to eat any fish from the Athabasca River or Lake Athabasca, a sad commentary to impacts on a peoples way of living. In June 1970, a Suncor pipeline break spilled 19,123 barrels of oil, roughly 3 million liters, into the Athabasca River which reached Lake Athabasca. This shut down the fishing industry on Lake Athabasca for two consecutive years. The fishermen held a press conference in October 2010 in Edmonton, Alberta displaying many of the collection of problem fish. This generated further international attention to the tarsands industry and its impacts to water and fish health.

Indigenous leaders in the downstream community of Fort Chipewyan have been chastised by oil company executives when they speak publicly to the press about their concerns of impacts from tarsands. They have gone so far as threatening, that should the Indigenous leaders continue, there would be repercussions to their First Nation-owned company’s contracts within certain oil company sites. Oil company executives regularly question the Indigenous leaders when their own community members speak out publicly on issues and I have seen those members silenced.

Two years ago I attended a protest in Trafalgar Square in London, England. We drew a crowd of about 500 supporters and this protest generated so much publicity internationally by England’s BBC and Canada’s CBC who were present and did live interviews. Three weeks after this action which I dubbed the “bloody oil tour” an executive from a major oil company flew to my community to meet with my Chief & Council and in no uncertain terms stated that they didn’t like that I traveled internationally and generated so much negative publicity on the tarsands industry. They also stated that they knew of all my actions in the past years because they said they had a binder “this thick” to prove it. He further suggested that somehow I should be “silenced” or even “terminated” or there would be repercussions. Two weeks later, the First Nation-owned company contracts worth millions were terminated displacing approximately 65 employees. I chose to leave my employment shortly thereafter.

An ethical, humane future for impacted communities?

In a recent trip to the Amazon and in conversation with a colleague from Nigeria, I told him many of our issues, our concerns, the repercussions we receive for being vocal. He was in complete disbelief. He said in a million years he would not believe all of this would occur in Canada, a developed G8 country. He said Canada is known as a safe country for its citizens. Canada is known as a country that prides itself for protection of human rights within its own borders and beyond.

I also tell my fellow leaders in Fort Chipewyan and to those young, brave members of my community, that the repercussions for speaking publicly is nothing compared to what we will see in the future. That if only 3% of the total deposit has been mined and the environmental impacts are so significant, that there will be many more generations of our people who will take up this challenge and they will face much more backlash than what we are seeing today from what has become a ruthless and aggressive race to exploit the tarsands. That many of our people will continue to see the early demise of their lives from rare and aggressive cancers the same way we watched our youngest victim at the age of 28 succumb to his cancer just months after being diagnosed. That if we see our environment in such a negative state today, do we think that we are capable of handing down to future generations a healthy environment? That if Canada and Alberta today ignore and repeatedly, knowingly infringe on our Constitutionally protected Treaty Rights, will our future generations be able to meaningfully exercise their right to hunt, fish and trap? Will our people in 20 years from now be able to enjoy a traditional diet of fish, moose, ducks, geese, caribou?

While I do not condone any ill-treatment on women in Saudi Arabia, Indigenous peoples in Canada’s tarsands should not be a pawn or be sacrificed to allow certainty for Canada, Alberta and multinational corporations to exploit the tarsands at all costs! From an Indigenous perspective, watching and being victim to the 40 years of unrelenting, unfettered, unmonitored development of the tarsands, there is nothing “ethical” or “humane” about the development of the tarsands!

I will be in Ottawa on Monday, September 26th to oppose the approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline because an approval means an expansion of production of tarsands by a million barrels a day, further exacerbating local Indigenous peoples grave concerns about the development of the tarsands.

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http://bsnorrell.blogspot.com/2011/09/cree-george-poitras-ottawa-tarsands.html