Sunday, October 30, 2011

Clashes In and Out of Sanity--Greece October 2011

While I don't support violence, I can't find value in the Austerity Measures enforced on the people of Greece. And because the people don't have a voice, they want their streets protected to make their demands on how they wish to proceed in their own country. Why would it be other than what it is? Why shouldn't people head into their own streets. What other options do people have?

One thing seems to be clear, one trick pony solutions by the state often evoke one trick pony reactions in the people in an emotional battle over survival.What else does anyone expect? For people to follow one another off cliffs in a human chain to save the controversial debt suspended in mid-air?

Perhaps there's a lesson here. Perhaps this debt will prove the opportunity for us to to re-create something new that gives the 21st century its special place in history.

I present the challenge: Who will dare to try to re-create our humanity so that our current luxury is no longer a luxury for a few but for all? And in so doing, who will do so with the backing of the people?

Unfortunately, those in power seem to want to sweep humanity into a treadmill present, one that embraces the past except for the gadgetry. Compensation: a few sparks for excitement. I guess the gadgetry makes the sparks.

Afraid of its own shadows, Big Power wants to decide the changes; it wants its privileges and its addictions intact and sacred. Afraid of its own shadows, it clings to its fabricated hierarchies and wants Main Street to maintain them at whatever the cost. Afraid of its own shadows, it calls on the cops of Main Street to beat up their own family members if necessary. Afraid of its own shadows, it refuses to make the adjustments that could turn down the volume on the growing aggression. We're not in an utopia or bust condition. We are at cliff's edge. Many are already over it. The challenge: How do we fly our metaphoric planes as our next quantum leap over to the next cliff. (How do you use this plane metaphor without unwanted associations?) Once there we can turn from the edge of the cliff and walk back to our new towns where anything can happen. Rather than? Rather than get back into the same old line to join the human chain that is right now hanging off the cliff--again--to save the debt suspended in mid-air. Over and over, Main Street's Sisyphean task. What a waste of human potential.

 In the bigger picture of humanity's quest to share the planet, this debt is meaningless.  Let the banks and big powers pay the debt off. They have the money. If we don't insist they cover the debts, are we enabling or giving in to infantile and pathological intent among hoarding people? And if so, what have we all internalized that has gotten us here?

Keeping the debt Main Street's debt makes it our post-modern monster, or its manifestation. It becomes, if it isn't already, humanity's greatest and saddest distraction and threat, the big one of our era, the one to siphon off our time and our imagination. We are not around for long. Do we really want to spend most of our time prioritizing this debt issue?

Well, I plan to visit some Occupy Everywhere site next weekend. That's my next entry. It's hard to believe I still haven't paid a site a visit.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Naming Names: Who's At the Top 1%

I came across an interesting article in the New York Sunday Review. While the article asks the question, "who exactly are the people at the top?," it fails to do more than offer the statistics.  Even thought the statistics are important, I thought I'd post an excerpt from the article and then follow that excerpt with a list of names.  Here's the except of "Wall Street Protesters Hit the Bull's-Eye" by Eduardo Porter.
Occupiers of Zuccotti Park and other sites around the country have been criticized for the fuzziness of their goals. Their complaint that the privileged few in the top 1 percent are getting a disproportionate share of the nation’s prosperity, however, is spot on. And Wall Streeters are taking a bigger and bigger chunk of that income.
Who exactly are the people at the top? They are 1.4 million families that made on average $1 million in 2009, the latest data available. They took a hit from the 2008 financial crisis, but no doubt are regaining lost ground. The rich always do: a report published last week by the Congressional Budget Office shows that the share of national income going to the top percentage of households skyrocketed over the last three decades, even as it fell for the vast majority of American families.
The Report gives some statistics but the report at this site is much more extensive.  It includes so much you need to take a day with a cup of coffee or tea to sit down and look it over. I don't know how much time you need to digest it.

I found this percent breakdown easy to follow:
  • Top 34.73% of households: annual gross income of $65,000 +
  • Top 25.60% of households: annual gross income of $80,000 +
  • Top  20% of households: annual gross income of $91,202 +
  • Top 17.80% of households:  annual gross income of $100,000 +
  • Top 10% of households: annual gross income of $118,200 +
  • Top 5% of households: annual gross income of $166,200+
  • Top 2.67% of households:  annual gross income of $200,000 +
  • Top 1.5% of households: annual gross income of $250,000 +
  • Top 0.12% (or146,000 households): annual gross income of $1,600,000+  (adapted from a conservative site)
Naming Names: Of course the richest 400 people are openly published at Forbes 400,  and other places, but I wanted to publish the link here as well as list the top 20 slots for my own research purposes.  Who are in the bottom top twenty slot? I'd like to find that list and set the top twenty and bottom twenty side by side. My guess is that the all bottom twenty would include so many ties that the list would go on for miles.

The Walmarts have as much income as the lower 30% (income bracket) of Americas. (this statistic added on December 9)

# 1: Bill Gates; Age: 55;  Residence: Medina, Wash.
Net worth: $59 billion;  Source: Microsoft

#2: Warren Buffett; Age: 81; Residence: Omaha, Neb.
Net worth: $39 billion; Source: Berkshire Hathaway

 #3: Larry Ellison; Age: 67; Residence: Woodside, Calif.
Net worth: $33 billion; Source: Oracle

# 4 (tie): Charles Koch; Age: 75; Residence: Wichita, Kan.
Net worth: $25 billion; Source: Koch Ind. & diversified

# 4 (tie): David Koch; Age: 71; Residence: New York
Net worth: $25 billion; Source: Koch Ind. & diversified

#5 missing or error

# 6: Christy Walton; Age: 56; Residence: Jackson, Wy.
Net worth: $24.5 billion; Source: Wal-Mart

# 7: George Soros; Age: 81; Residence: Katonah, N.Y.
Net worth: $22 billion; Source: hedge funds

# 8: Sheldon Adelson; Age: 78; Residence: Las Vegas, Nev.
Net worth: $21.5 billion; Source: casinos

# 9: Jim Walton; Age: 63; Residence: Bentonville, Ark.
Net worth: $21.1 billion; Source: Wal-Mart

# 10: Alice Walton; Age: 61; Residence: Fort Worth, Texas
Net worth: $20.9 billion; Source: Wal-Mart

# 11: S. Robson Walton; Age: 67; Residence: Bentonville, Ark.
Net worth: $20.5 billion; Source: Wal-Mart;

# 12: Michael Bloomberg; Age: 69; Source: Bloomberg LP
Net worth: $19.5 billion; Residence: New York

# 13: Jeff Bezos; Age: 47; Residence: Seattle, Wash.
Net worth: $19.1 billion; Source:

# 14: Mark Zuckerberg; Age: 27; Residence: Palo Alto, Calif.
Net worth: $17.5 billion; Source: Facebook

# 15: Sergey Brin; Age: 38; Residence: Los Altos, Calif.
Net worth: $16.7 billion; Source: Google

# 16: Larry Page; Age: 38; Residence: Palo Alto, Calif.
Net worth: $16.7 billion; Source: Google

# 17: John Paulson; Age: 55; Residence: New York
Net worth: $15.5 billion; Source: hedge funds

# 18: Michael Dell; Age: 46; Residence: Austin, Texas
Net worth: $15 billion; Source: Dell

# 19: Steve Ballmer; Age: 55;  Residence: Hunts Point, Wash.
Net worth: $13.9 billion; Source: Microsoft

# 20 (tie): Forrest Mars; Age: 80; Residence: Big Horn, Wy.
Net worth: $13.8 billion; Source: candy

# 20 (tie): Jacqueline Mars; Age: 71; Residence: The Plains, Va.
Net worth: $13.8 billion; Source: candy

# 20 (tie): John Mars; Age: 75;  Residence: Jackson, Wy.
Net worth: $13.8 billion;  Source: candy and pet food

Now that was a waste of time in and for itself. Yet, I trust myself. I don't like waste much. Nor overdoses. I always try to turn even the dead leaves in rain gutters and the garbage from dinner in the sink into at least philosophical if not creative value. In this case, I'll return here from time to time, mostly in my mind, to study the connections within and to and from the data.  I trust meditating on such data will lead to something of value to think about if not write about. In and of itself, the data is of little interest to me.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Occupy to Boycott

Since the police are tear gassing or arresting people, attempting to exercise their right of assembly, such as in Oakland, we may see even more people pour into the Occupy sites in order to defend the right of assembly. I have always believed you don't leave. But whenever one's safety is at stake, it becomes a personal and political decision.

Video streaming by Ustream
I wonder how police determine who gets arrested and who doesn't? To follow the rule of law, shouldn't everyone get arrested? If not, are the police discriminating against those arrested? Or are they discriminating against those not arrested? What if all the protesters demanded to get arrested? All or nothing. What would happen?  In any case, it does seems the arbitrary arrests fracture the right of assembly of some but not all protesters.   Interestingly, about half of those arrested in New York recently, were offered freedom with a catch. Why half? Which half is being discriminated against?  What kind of an arbitrary system of law is going on?  How does that arbitrary system fit in with our Constitution? What if one million protesters show up and all engage in acts of civil disobedience? Shouldn't all get arrested?  What about even 10,000? Shouldn't all ten thousand get arrested? If only enough get arrested to make an example of them or fit into a wagon, aren't the police going against their commitment to the law if not the law itself?  These are the kind of questions that I have about the arrests. I am not promoting the arrests. I am promoting an all or nothing arrest system.

How Will the Occupy Movement Keep Its Momentum?

  Practicing boycotts is not an original practice,  just as strikes are not original but  have often been effective .  It seems boycotting is the next step to maintain the momentum of Occupy Wall Street. Already in process, boycotting banks is already expanding toward challenging insurance companies.  But it's a big country. It's easy to get burned out and wander aimlessly in and out of boycotts. Perhaps to involve more people and turn up the volume on the voice of Occupy Everywhere, we might see a system in which protesters begin rotating boycotts. The boycotts might even be called Canceled Shopping Days or someone might create a logo for it, for example, a shopping cart filled with dollars signs with an X through it.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Code Pink and Other Women Occupy Wall Street

Is Code Pink helping to fuel  the Occupy Wall Street momentum?  As a matter of fact, they are.

Follows is a little (maybe not so little) excerpt from Ms. Magazine with links to women who have occupied Wall Street.
It’s unfortunate that the mainstream media has paid so little attention to women’s voices at Occupy Wall Street and has consistently chosen white males to represent the movement. While I don’t begrudge these men for talking to major news outlets–it’s great that they’re willing articulate their concerns to a wide audience–I do fault the media for consistently choosing to interview and profile people from this same demographic. The camp is so diverse in gender, race, religion and ideological affiliation that failing to highlight this diversity is a failure to fully and accurately cover the movement.
Also, what about all the famous women leaders who have come to visit the camp and show their support? Men’s visits to the camp have been consistently reported–just perform a basic internet search for Michael Moore, Russell Simmons, Kanye West, Cornel West or Chris Hedges. But what about Naomi Klein, Barbara Ehrenreich, Eve Ensler and Susan Sarandon, to name a few? While it’s amazing that all of these people have gotten behind the movement, I do think it’s telling that, again, the mainstream media chooses to focus on men. (Women got the most attention only when they were penned up and maced early in the occupation.) The challenge is not so much to harness the power of women but to make sure their actions are given visibility.
Last Saturday in Times Square, when thousands gathered to protest the ongoing wars and the corporate interests embedded in them, I noticed women directing the march. As we all chanted together, I realized that Occupy Wall Street is galvanizing because the ire is feminist, anti-colonialist, anti-racist and anti-patriarchal. Although there have been (and will be) hiccups along the way, Occupy Wall Street will only grow in numbers and support if it continues to resist a top-down message and instead capitalizes on the urgent notion that the 99 percent is made of many diverse “percents.”

Interviews Cornell West & Michael Moore, Oct 24

Here's Democracy Now! today. Much of the show is on Occupy Wall Street.  Interviews with Cornell West and Michael Moore talk about the momentum of Occupy Wall Street. One thing perhaps is clear. People should not leave occupying until the end is reached. Every day those who can stay stay. How about rotating bodies. Mondays and Fridays this group of people. Tuesdays and Sunday this group of people. Etc.

It would strengthen the future of Occupy Wall Street if Occupy Wall Street had an umbrella called Main Street that organizes all the groups, provides sign up sheets, and offers shared resources and ideas. No group runs the show. But Umbrella Main Street, set up as vendors, could act as communication centers. What do people want? What do people want? Find it at your nearest Umbrella Main Street. All the demands in one place.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Elizabeth Warren Speaks On the Work Force, Families and Revolving Debt

What are the ethical issues challenging the American work environment that raises the volume on voices such as Elizabeth Warren? She speaks on what she sees as the single most important economic shift in the 2nd half of the 20th century that sprang from the entry of the working mother (middle class?) into the American work force. The parenthesis because the work environment was no stranger to working class women. However, the issue involves all working families today. This video is very much worth the hour.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Naomi Wolf, Writer Arrested

The latest author to put her hands behind her back at an Occupy Wall Street event, is feminist author Naomi Wolf.  Urged on by the tradition of Martin Luther King jr., on the importance to engage in civil disobedience against unjust laws, Wolf joins others in an act of civil disobedience.  Today, such civil disobedience rallies against the unethical practices of Wall Street and the government, economic and cultural officials who promote, participate or ignore the practices.

Links to Greece's Discontent with Austerity

Greece-Oct 19

The General Strike of Greece in Pictures, from The Guardian.   The Issue: Who will control the economics of Main Street in Greece? The Euro Wall Street or the Main Street of Greece?  According to one protester,  municipal employee Giorgos Kamkeris, "The men and women whom we elected to power were not given a mandate to reduce us to poverty."  He went on to say,  "this is about people power. It is about the masses persuading politicians to think again"  (qtd. in Helen Smith).

This BBC article with video shows the intensity of the clash between Main Street and Euro Wall Street during Greece's General Strike going on right now.  According to the article, at least 70,000 people gathered together at Syntagma Square in central Athens. But people all through Greece are part of the General Strike. According to the article, "one striker, university lecturer Yannis Zabetakis, told the BBC Greece was like 'a taxation Armageddon.'"

This blog article offers one or more videos of the crisis in Greece. The videos follow the article. Its headline reads, "Greece Braces for 'Mother Of All Strikes As Austerity Vote Nears." Further beneath the videos are "related articles" on the crisis in Greece.

After Greek Parliament votes yes, yes, make Main Street pay once more, people on Main Street say no, no, no. Yet, who's listening?  Who wrote the sacred list of "Not To Be Tampered With" and how is that working out for us? Should we re-evaluate our addiction to a particular kind of governing in which unavoidable suffering and imbalances occur with such rapidity both are hard to keep up with? Should we continue obeying  a small group of people who we essentially allow to write up death lists, poverty lists, and privilege lists? Main Street has to decide together. We have to examine where we've been and where we'd like to go. Whatever we do, we should really figure out a way to avoid setting up people on Main Street as tools for people on Wall Street to use for their benefit.

 But what do I know about the desires of others? Maybe people just want the crumbs that usually fall from the table for us.  Nothing says we should meet the demands of the 21st century for a more humane society. Nothing says we shouldn't obey people who have assumed rulership over others. We can cattle ourselves onto a very thin line, in which our  major goal remains policing our own and our family's state of being to stay on that line, the thin one from which we can be easily seen by those who have drawn it or continue to alter it according to their needs. We can count on some nice person in power to change things--eventually one day, later, in some future, after we're dead even, for our children or grandchildren. It's really our choice. It always was and always will be.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Initial Demands of the 99%

The following are the initial demands of one group, an unknown percentage, among the 99%:

An OWS Working Group Committed to Elect a Non-Partisan National General Assembly

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.


Hillary Speaks on Citizen Political Involvement in the 21st Century

Monday, October 17, 2011

Notes On Who is Capitalizing on Occupy Wall Street

Who is capitalizing on the Occupy Wall Street Movement?  What do news services, politicians and CEOs say in order to frame the movement to their advantage?

In doing research, I found some interesting facts. Somewhere near the end of my research, I came across Matt Taibbi, writing in Rolling Stone, who says:
beware of provocateurs on both sides of the aisle. This movement is going to attract many Breitbarts, of both the left and right variety. They're going to try to identify fake leaders, draw phony battle lines, and then herd everybody back into the same left-right cage matches of old. Whenever that happens, we just have to remember not to fall for the trap. When someone says this or that person speaks for OWS, don't believe it. This thing is bigger than one or two or a few people, and it isn't part of the same old story.  
He wrote this after Breitbart's Big Government site published a bunch of stolen emails that Breitbart thought implicated some democrat politicians and public figures for aligning themselves or even helping Occupy Wall Street movement, as if any association constitutes foul play.

The importance of Taibbi's story is not about the stolen emails, it is about who is capitalizing on Occupy Wall Street instead of assisting it or who is pretending to assist it. We already know critics of the OWS will capitalize on it to get their talking points out and trash their opponents. Such behavior has become part of the status quo of political posturing and pseudo debates.  But what about those allegedly favoring the movement in order to gain from it?  Two groups come to mind. First are the framers, those putting a frame around the movement by defining it in their own self-interest. This group leaves a lot out, actually, it leaves out anything that doesn't fit their perception of the movement. The second group uses the word "understand"a lot.  I understand or you don't understand.

I will be adding to this list over time.


1. Time magazine puts a frame around its list of the Top Ten American Protests Movements.  It decides not only which of America's Protest Movements should be in the Top Ten, but more important also what information about the protests should be included and what should be excluded. How would you write about these movements?

The Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council blog frames the Occupy Wall Street protests through its lens. It understands the frustrations of the people in the street. It blames the governments for all the frustration. It claims government calls the shots. Exonerating Wall Street players from responsibility in the current economic mess, this  Council claims the government  failed to understand what the Council understands about Occupy Wall Street, especially what the Council understands about how to frame the faltering economy that led  to Occupy Wall Street. Blame bailouts of  Fannie and Freddie, the Council cries out. The Council exonerates Wall Street by claiming its innocence and immunity from having to understand how to fix a country's economy since it is not elected into office to act from such understanding or decision making about the economy. The Council admits Wall Street played a part in the faltering economy but only because government dragged  Wall Street into the mess.  In the Never Enough Land of Wall Street,  the government lacked an understanding of how to bailout Wall Street with enough, I guess. Okay, maybe that part isn't in the article. The Council is not alone in this kind of thinking. Many headlines outside the Occupy Wall Street zone are pointing fingers at  political  deaf and dumbers with no understanding of  the real cause behind the meaning of what brought about Occupy Wall Street.

Here's one reporter from CNNiReport who says he's an insider and wants a leader and he knows who it is.


Who are the politicians who say they understand the movement but do little or nothing to directly support it? The list changes daily. All this understanding sounds like a political therapy group. It reminds me of Bill Clinton when he said, "I feel your pain." On the other hand, given the chance, how many politicians want to do the ethical thing?

The Democrats

Key figures among the democrats offer their understanding.

UPDATED: OCT 18. They understand so well, this group has decided to put together its own rally (on creating jobs) in an attempt to siphon off the firefighters, police and teachers from the Occupy Wall Street movement.  Okay, maybe  siphon is a harsh word. Maybe borrow or maybe just invite.  Maybe all along some of the top democrats have been waiting for the people to finally give them a reason to raise hell. It's hard to know. The danger? Fragmenting a movement already underway. The call:  Hey, everyone, over here!  Well maybe that's okay. It's just one day. An interesting paradox, however. Isn't a rally by any administration an oxymoron act?  I don't know. Maybe I'm wrong. Paranoid. Cynical. But to whom are the democrats protesting? Isn't the tradition of rallying of the people against those in power? We have to see where this goes? It could turn out really well.

Have the democrats consulted with the teachers, fire fighters and police--the ones they are calling to action--over what belongs in the jobs bill? Maybe the teachers, police and fire fighters should make sure their needs are being met exactly as they want them met before grabbing that rally sign. What does the jobs bill say about unions currently under Code Dismantle? Why does this administration insist on defining itself as the underdog and oppressed? Is this some kind of code in itself, asking anyone listening for help against some shadow administration that really makes the decisions in Washington? It seems unlikely, but you never know.

Politicians say they understand. But how much of this understanding is self-serving as the Taibbi  warns. He seems to share a common cynicism. We're seen the people's power co-opted so often it doesn't take much to turn someone or something into a suspect.

 But wait, what might transpire if  politicians who say they understand take the bold step and join  the Wall Street protests?

And what about all that money on Wall Street? If there's plenty of money to go around but is stuck to 1% of the nation's fingers, wouldn't it benefit the nation for everyone to grab whatever it takes to unstick it once and for all and now? And not just loosen the crumbs under a Trickle Down economic plan that has never worked.  How fastened to these few fingers can this wealth be? Certainly, if we can travel to the end of the galaxy, if we can make near fountain of youth discoveries with stems cells, if we can set off particles in accelerators, we can unstick money from a few crooked fingers, especially if it means better survival for humanity and the planet.

How can today's understanding politicians help? For starters, how about sending a lot of money to help Occupy Wall Street get elected people into office who are not dependent on Wall Street's cash? How about supporting the unions? How about refusing money from Wall Street.

The Republicans

The mantra is pervasive. It's like looking up the meaning of a word in a dictionary. They get to blame the democrats for the faltering economy. They get to blame the democrats for the frustration and anger partly fueling  the Occupy Wall Street dissent. They get to remind the folks in the streets it's their own fault. Here's a typical opportunistic Cain moment:  Herman Cain says if you're not rich, blame yourself. My brother has cerebral palsy and can neither walk nor talk or even use his hands effectively. He is definitely to blame for his medical condition that leads him, no matter how hard he tries to understand the stock market or find someone to hire him, to have to rely on social security to survive.  My neighbor lost her house because she lost her job. She should have long ago given up food and banked that money for her rainy day. Her fault.


1. Warren Buffet and his son Howard, who have not donated any money or supplies to Occupy Wall Street, prefer to donate understanding and benevolent best wishes instead, which not only helps them appear sympathetic but also neutralizes their massive wealth into a no touch safety zone. These well wishers promote themselves as the good hoarders of the cash siphoned off from the 99%.

Giving these good hoarders the benefit of the doubt, let's ask them to practice their angelic compassion. How about donating at least ten million dollars to the Occupy Wall Street Movement no strings attached. This money could be used to help feed people, pay their rent while protesting and replenish medical supplies. Or how about if the good hoarders give up up 10% of their wealth to pay off the students loans of all those workers who work for them. Money left over? Pay the tuition of workers in your vast companies. Shorten the work and raise the pay, both show an appreciation of those who fill the bank accounts of the owners.

2. We all heard Ben and Jerry ice cream wants to be in the Good-Hoarder Column. This company went a step further than the Buffets and actually passed out the sweets at Occupy Wall Street to sweeten up their own image along with the protesters. To really sweeten things up, this company could look at how it treats its employees. Do they have strong benefits and retirement? Are they all earning a living wage? Are any losing their homes? How about profit sharing? Why not lead the Good Company Column by making sure employees are really sharing in the wealth they make for Ben and Jerry's bank accounts. Or rather than pass ice-cream around--all that sugar!--help pay off student loans.

3.  Finally, some businesses will always find a innovative way to make money off any situation. These are most certainly the front runners in innovation. The best example so far  is the Android iphone, which is advertising its phone by suggesting protesters use it after an arrest.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Three Women Share Nobel Prize!

Three Women Share Nobel Prize!

Occupy Wall Street links, update Oct 17

update Oct 17

Democracy Now!

UPDATED, OCT 15, earlier

Today, people from all over the world will enter the visible world of the streets and make them politically friendly for  99% of the people. Today more people are waking up from the gutters of the rich and hobbling onto the sidewalks to begin a march toward regaining their dignity, or recognizing it for the first time. Today, globally people get a chance to start the process of  making their way toward health care, equity in gender and race, access to education, high paying jobs with a lower work week, the end of wars, and all of the other demands that suggest a more humane world in which everyone takes a greater part in the gains, a world in which the wealthy no longer maintain some kind of assumed divine right over the 99% who in essence keep the wealthy stable in their positions and power.

Occupy Wall Street, Oct 15

The Guardian on Global Action, Oct 15

Excellent photos from around the world, Occupy, occupy, occupy!, Oct 15

Photos from around the world: Get through the commercial ad that precedes the photos to view the 55 photos., Oct 15. Photos are worth it. Mute the sound on the ad.

Democracy Now, October 7 -- Click on main logo in left-hand corner to keep current

Occupy Wall Street, Oct 6--

Occupy San Fransisco, Oct 7-- updated daily at site itself

Occupy Santa Cruz, Oct 7, Photos from Santa Cruz, Oct 13

Occupy DC, Oct 7

Occupy Los Angeles, live streaming

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Taking the Path Less Traveled to Wall Street in October 2011


"Bring Down the Wall" reads a sign in New York on October 2, 2011. How prophetic is this sign? And what is the Wall of Wall Street that must be taken down in order to make an adjustment in the economic imbalance in America right now? How prophetic is this sign?

How prophetic is this video?

What do these arrests suggest?

The wave of the new Millennium may be doing nothing short than trying to catch up with itself, of taking the path less traveled into its own era, to make its historical mark, its advances in the history of humanity--to reach its shoreline with a more humane and wise approach to social and economic structures. 

People have waited a long time for the saturated greed of the few to transform into something non-toxic. People have waited a long time for those elected into office to act responsibly and protect Main Street from the toxic accumulations. People have waited a long time to neutralize or throw out the ideological leftovers of the 17th century social and economic divisions.  

It will not be easy. But if Main Street stays firm, whether on the margins of Wall Street or inside its center, and more people join in that determination, it is possible if not inevitable to bring down that Wall of Wall Street that has brought about so much unnecessary suffering, told and untold, on Main Street.  At least that's what Parenti seems to thinks. 

(UPDATE OCT 8: I'm not sure Main Street can break through the Wall without substantial and sustained demonstrations that are both tightly organized and well-funded along with the spontaneous gatherings. Main Street needs both. The new era calls for both, perhaps. Yet, redefining leadership makes sense. Direct democracy seems much healthier--politically, economically and socially--than representational democracy.   Check out, by clicking here, how direct democracy worked in 5th century BC ancient Greece. Direct democracy involves the participation of all citizens. Is direct democracy superior to the representational democracy that began blossoming with modernity in the 17th century?Are we seeing Occupy Everything an attempt to update the practices of our earliest direct democracy and experiment with our kind of direct democracy?

And what will we find after the Wall of Wall Street collapses out of historical necessity, if it does? What will we do with America's long and powerful momentum of "Accumulitis"? What will we have learned? Maybe answering these questions should be put on hold while the momentum helps shape and frame the necessity of the moment. )