Hey, all! This is just a quick scrapbook post to gather together some information about the activism building in NYC (and elsewhere in the US) since September 17th, with an emphasis on bits and pieces that a) touch on the evolution of open source counterculture, b) examine indie media/social network coverage versus MSM, c) convey the increasingly surreal (and sometimes funny), stranger-than-speculative-fiction nature of much of what’s happening, or d) relate directly to longtime members of the Coilhouse community. It will be updated over the next few days/weeks, with all additions and edits clearly marked.*
Are you currently organizing/protesting in NYC, or elsewhere in the States? We’d love to hear from you in comments. The more dialog that gets going about all of this, the better. Interesting times, indeed. Certainly galvanizing. And, potentially (hopefully), healing? Fingers crossed. Best of luck, everyone.
Hundreds of protesters were arrested on the Brooklyn Bridge yesterday. (Photo via)
Occupy Wall Street’s First Official Statement (via the Daily Kos):
This was unanimously voted on by all members of Occupy Wall Street last night, around 8pm, Sept 29. It is our first official document for release. We have three more underway, that will likely be released in the upcoming days: 1) A declaration of demands. 2) Principles of Solidarity 3) Documentation on how to form your own Direct Democracy Occupation Group. This is a living document. you can receive an official press copy of the latest version by emailing email@example.com.
Declaration of the Occupation of New York City
As we gather together in solidarity to express a feeling of mass injustice, we must not lose sight of what brought us together. We write so that all people who feel wronged by the corporate forces of the world can know that we are your allies.
As one people, united, we acknowledge the reality: that the future of the human race requires the cooperation of its members; that our system must protect our rights, and upon corruption of that system, it is up to the individuals to protect their own rights, and those of their neighbors; that a democratic government derives its just power from the people, but corporations do not seek consent to extract wealth from the people and the Earth; and that no true democracy is attainable when the process is determined by economic power. We come to you at a time when corporations, which place profit over people, self-interest over justice, and oppression over equality, run our governments. We have peaceably assembled here, as is our right, to let these facts be known.
They have taken our houses through an illegal foreclosure process, despite not having the original mortgage.
They have taken bailouts from taxpayers with impunity, and continue to give Executives exorbitant bonuses.
They have perpetuated inequality and discrimination in the workplace based on age, the color of one’s skin, sex, gender identity and sexual orientation.
They have poisoned the food supply through negligence, and undermined the farming system through monopolization.
They have profited off of the torture, confinement, and cruel treatment of countless nonhuman animals, and actively hide these practices.
They have continuously sought to strip employees of the right to negotiate for better pay and safer working conditions.
They have held students hostage with tens of thousands of dollars of debt on education, which is itself a human right.
They have consistently outsourced labor and used that outsourcing as leverage to cut workers’ healthcare and pay.
They have influenced the courts to achieve the same rights as people, with none of the culpability or responsibility.
They have spent millions of dollars on legal teams that look for ways to get them out of contracts in regards to health insurance.
They have sold our privacy as a commodity.
They have used the military and police force to prevent freedom of the press.
They have deliberately declined to recall faulty products endangering lives in pursuit of profit.
They determine economic policy, despite the catastrophic failures their policies have produced and continue to produce.
They have donated large sums of money to politicians supposed to be regulating them.
They continue to block alternate forms of energy to keep us dependent on oil.
They continue to block generic forms of medicine that could save people’s lives in order to protect investments that have already turned a substantive profit.
They have purposely covered up oil spills, accidents, faulty bookkeeping, and inactive ingredients in pursuit of profit.
They purposefully keep people misinformed and fearful through their control of the media.
They have accepted private contracts to murder prisoners even when presented with serious doubts about their guilt.
They have perpetuated colonialism at home and abroad.
They have participated in the torture and murder of innocent civilians overseas.
They continue to create weapons of mass destruction in order to receive government contracts.*
To the people of the world,
We, the New York City General Assembly occupying Wall Street in Liberty Square, urge you to assert your power.
Exercise your right to peaceably assemble; occupy public space; create a process to address the problems we face, and generate solutions accessible to everyone.
To all communities that take action and form groups in the spirit of direct democracy, we offer support, documentation, and all of the resources at our disposal.
Join us and make your voices heard!
*These grievances are not all-inclusive.
- Wall Street Protest Pictures and Video
- Abbreviated Pundit Roundup: Occupation Edition
- More Protests Gathering Steam Countrywide
- Guardian coverage: NYPD accused of heavy-handed tactics
- Protests Stir Up Voices on the Web (NYTimes, which is simultaneously wrangling with this)
- “If it Bleeds, it Leads” Why it Took Police Violence to Make the Media Notice ‘Occupy Wall Street’
- “Tomorrow, wear a polo and khakis.”
- The Radiohead Hoax
- BLACK PHOENIX ALCHEMY LAB: “Rock the protester cliche! This is a filthy friggin’ patchouli, dark, deep, rooty, and strangely sexy, with cocoa absolute, tobacco absolute, and bourbon vanilla.” You send us money, you get a bottle of perfume and the protesters get some chow. All the money after manufacturing costs that we generate from sales of #OCCUPYWALLSTREET will go to purchasing pizzas for the protesters.
- Free Vampire Squid sketches by Molly Crabapple from 5-7 today in Liberty Park.
- Running Twitter feed hashtag #needsoftheoccupiers details what protestors are requesting (food, water, reportage, blankets, fresh socks, etc.)
- Hippies and Hipsters Exhale / Is It America’s Arab Spring? ”… it feels like a festival of frustrations, a collective venting session with little edge or urgency, highlighting just how far away downtown Manhattan is from Damascus — the hyper-aggressiveness of the police not withstanding.”
- FOX News Meets Intelligent Wall Street Protestor And Doesn’t Air It, but Kyle Christopher of Occupy Wall Street’s media team was there to tape it. (Gothamist)
- Noam Chomsky supports Occupy Wall Street (Dangerous Minds)
- Wall Street Elite Mocks Protesters by Sipping Champagne on Ciprion Club’s balcony ”Essential to most Americans is food, shelter, and a job, they don’t have time to dress up and sip champagne while their friends and neighbors get arrested for speaking their minds on a public street.” (© Christine Dantz 2011)
- Douglas Rushkoff writes: “In fact, we are witnessing America’s first true Internet-era movement, which — unlike civil rights protests, labor marches, or even the Obama campaign — does not take its cue from a charismatic leader, express itself in bumper-sticker-length goals and understand itself as having a particular endpoint. .. As the product of the decentralized networked-era culture, it is less about victory than sustainability. It is not about one-pointedness, but inclusion and groping toward consensus. It is not like a book; it is like the Internet.”
- Whose Side Are You On: The Moral Clarity Of Occupy Wall Street
- TECHNOCCULT: 3 Perspectives on #OccupyWallStreet
- Jon Stewart: “LET THEM EAT STEAK”
- Alan Grayson on Real Time with Bill Maher
- “[I am] old enough to remember what happened in the 1960s when the left-wing took to the streets and somehow the media glorified them and it ended up shaping policy. [...] We can’t allow that to happen.” ~Rep. Peter King
UPDATE (Monday, 12:25pm)
UPDATE (Monday, Oct 10, 6:40pm)
UPDATE (Monday, Oct 10, 8:08pm)
- It is not the job of the protesters to draft legislation. That’s the job of the nation’s leaders, and if they had been doing it all along there might not be a need for these marches and rallies. Because they have not, the public airing of grievances is a legitimate and important end in itself. It is also the first line of defense against a return to the Wall Street ways that plunged the nation into an economic crisis from which it has yet to emerge.” ~New York Times
UPDATE (Saturday, Oct 15th, 4:40pm)
- VIDEO: A large group of NYC Citibank customers enter a branch of the bank, wanting to close their accounts. They are all locked inside the bank to await arrest. Woman outside of the locked doors attempts to convey lawyer info to them. Video shows another woman saying “I’m a customer” being forcibly dragged into the bank to join the others: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TH3kiaJ1-c8&feature=youtube_gdata_player
- Photo Diary of the Worldwide 99% (via Daily Kos)
UPDATE (October 28th, 2011)
*Opening paragraph edited for clarity on Mon, Oct. 3