Occupy Wall Street movement reviving


This video from the USA says about itself:

Tom Morello, guitarist for Rage Against the Machine, joined Occupy LA protesters on the steps of Los Angeles City Hall on Saturday, October 8. He performed a song from his 2011 solo album.

Spring Preview: Protesters Nationwide Occupy Corporations, Education. Allison Kilkenny, In These Times in the USA: “The past week has proven to be something of a resurgence for Occupy Wall Street with two major protests featuring thousands of activists unfolding in states across the country”: here.

During the #OccupyWallStreet protests, some police officers used excessive force against peaceful protesters: here.

NYPD Under Fire for Surveillance of Occupy Protesters: here.

Yana Kunichoff, Truthout in the USA: “Documents obtained by Truthout through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request show a lack of clarity about DHS’s role in the surveillance and eviction of Occupy movements – within the agency itself…. The question of whether the Occupy movements are considered security threats and can therefore be surveilled by the agency is detailed in internal memos that show the developing strategy toward the Occupy movement, which DHS employees affirm is ‘constitutionally protected activity'”: here.

NYPD Infiltrated Liberal Political Groups, According To New Documents: here.

Occupy London not over: here.

The central squares of the great cities are alternately filled with protesters of one kind or another these days, from the Indignados of Madrid to the giant-killers of Tahrir Square: here.

10 thoughts on “Occupy Wall Street movement reviving

  1. Pingback: New York, Chicago against war | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. The Occupy Movement and Labor

    Paul Pechter, a long time labor activist, became active in his union in San Diego in 1980 and has since participated as a rank and file activist, a chair of education committees responsible for the production and distribution of local union newsletters, an elected member of his local bargaining committee, an elected business agent, and a hired field representative. Here he is interviewed by Elizabeth Fattah from the Green Politics Print Collective.

    EF: How do you think the Occupy Movement has influenced Labor Unions?

    PP: The Occupy Movement has, in effect, replaced the Labor movement as the preeminent mass organization exposing and resisting class domination and placing the class struggle back at top of the agenda within the movement toward fundamental social change. Labor held that position until a degree of post world war II economic prosperity was used by Capital to tame and co-opt Labor. Class struggle unionism was transformed into business unionism worshipping at the altar of ‘peace and per capita’ and partnering with Capital to preserve a system driven by the exploitation of labor. Of course this transformation did not resolve class antagonisms caused by this exploitation, they continued unabated. Instead, it succeeded in splintering Labor between the interests of its bureaucratic leaders and its rank and file members, and within the rank and file between higher and lower paid workers and between organized and unorganized workers. These widening divisions led to downward spiral, draining Labor of its power so clearly indicated by the fact that today it represents less than 8% of private sector workers.

    On the other hand the Occupy Movement probably has little chance of realizing its potential without active and massive participation from workers, both organized and unorganized. In this sense it can be said Labor and Occupy are interdependent, with each playing a significant role in determining the future of the other.

    EF: Occupy Oakland called for a general strike in November for the west coast to shut down ports from Washington State to California. This was a controversial tactic by Occupy Oakland with Union leadership complaining that they were not informed by the Occupiers in advance and the occupiers saying that the rank and file union members supported the action.

    EF_Pechter

    PP: Mistakes were probably made but they are secondary. Primarily, Occupy was correct by boldly taking up support of ILWU union workers in Longview, Washington in their struggle against grain terminal operator EGT. [Note: A final EGT settlement acknowledged Occupy’s positive role – see http://www.occupytheegt.org ] They also vocally supported unorganized port truck drivers who have major grievances and are beginning to self-organize. The company has refused to hire ILWU members and is now in a drawn-out battle that could shape the future of the 4,000 union members who work the Pacific Northwest’s grain elevators. The ILWU leadership publically rejected closing ports in part because they are under court orders not to do so and faced stiff and damaging court fines if they disobeyed. The long term effect of this incident on the emerging bond between the two movements remains to be seen. But as of this writing there have been a series of developments which suggest the public disagreements over the recent West Coast Port closure are superficial. When EGT revealed they were sending a ship to their new Longview, CA grain elevator to be loaded by non-ILWU workers, ILWU Local 21 put out a call to Occupy to join with union workers in massive demonstrations when the ship arrived. Occupy responded by organizing caravans designed to transport large numbers of occupiers to Longview at the proper cue. At this point the Federal government publically announced the U.S. Navy would escort the EGT ship into Longview. It was clear that the 1% and their supporters took a different view of the situation once Occupy joined in active solidarity with the ILWU workers. The 1%, with just cause, greatly fears the power this solidarity has the potential to generate. Soon after the Governor of Washington state announced an agreement between the ILWU and EBT had been reached, the details of which are at this point unknown to the public. But even without knowing exactly what the ILWU won, it is reasonable to credit the threat of solidarity between Occupy and union workers as an important factor in forcing the previously intransigent EGT back to the bargaining table. This constitutes a mere fraction of the transformative power that meaningful solidarity between the occupy and worker movements promises to deliver if fully realized.

    EF: What do you think is role of the Occupy movement is in relationship to unions?

    PP: I wouldn’t presume to define any specific roles for Occupy. They are engaged in a complex and ever-changing process of development which only those directly involved can define. But it should be pointed out that Occupy has already defined and successfully moved on a couple of roles. One is mentioned above, that of building solidarity with workers’ struggles, the other is creating an alternative model for young workers, organized and unorganized, to learn from. I would not be at all surprised if many organized workers come to adopt Occupy’s class struggle attitude and start pressuring their unions to do the same. This could shake up the decades old union strategies and tactics which have landed the U.S. working class in its current state of confusion and powerlessness. Occupy appears to be in the process of developing a dual role in which they support militant actions of rank and file workers to shed exploitation, while challenging the peace and per capita paradigm pervasive in the top layers of union leadership.

    (Green Politics published in 2011 a Paul Pechter interview that Elizabeth Fattah focused on Wisconsin, the Fight for Unions.)

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  3. “Occupy” Acts Locally

    The Occupy movements in multiple cities, while following New York’s original Occupy Wall Street, have each tended to take on a local character. Oakland, birthplace of the Black Panthers, produced an Occupy that grabbed headlines with its port closing, strikes, and black bloc window-smashings.

    Occupy St. Louis has actively resisted corporate interests that take advantage of the 99% and continue to enrich the 1%. To this end Occupy St. Louis is supporting Annie Quain’s refusal to leave her foreclosed home.

    The sign above was placed on Annie Quain’s home December 6, 2011, and has remained there ever since. Here is a video link to the Annie Quain foreclosure story.

    St. Louis will host the Occupy Midwest gathering in mid-March.

    Occupy San Diego, like most occupations throughout the country, has had its tents and belongings trashed and confiscated by the police, along with many arrests. This has not deterred nor dampened spirits.

    Occupy_San_Diego

    Here, Occupy San Diego protests the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) at the recent Democratic State Convention.

    Although police have crushed Occupy encampments elsewhere, Louisville’s Occupy, coming of age in a city where moderation reigns, has employed court procedures and negotiations with Louisville’s mayor to extend its stay in downtown Founder’s Square.

    Occupy Louisville also marched in protest of the National Defense Authorization Act, which makes it legal for Americans to be indefinitely detained by the military without access to an attorney or trial by jury, on orders of the executive branch.

    After the Crash

    by Paul Kesler

    (sung to the tune of “Lizzie Borden” by The Chad Mitchell Trio)

    Yesterday in New York City the free market choked and died,
    And every major banker left a note of suicide.
    Some folks said it couldn’t happen, others said, “Of course, it could!”
    But they all concurred that the massacre hadn’t worked out like it should.

    Oh, you can’t shop for bargains up in New York City,
    Especially when all the stores have closed.
    No, you can’t shop for bargains up in New York City,
    That’s just the way the market ebbs and flows.

    Well, the stock exchange kept plummeting all through the afternoon,
    And everyone could see that something bad was coming soon,
    But no one knew why people in the streets were on the run,
    They could only tell at the closing bell when the coppers popped their guns.

    Oh, it’s not very peaceful up in New York City,
    It’s tough to dodge a bullet or a knife,
    No, it’s not too peaceful up in New York City,
    It’s even hard to hang on to your wife.

    Well, no one’s left for pleasure and no one has left for spite,
    And no one’s left because the mayor wasn’t very bright,
    Go blame it on the corporations and the bums they hired,
    Or save your tears for the financiers who jumped into the fire.

    Oh, you can’t get a steady job in New York City,
    Unless you work for 15 cents a day,
    No, you can’t find a steady job in New York City,
    Unless a sewer’s where you want to stay.

    SPOKEN:

    1st Speaker:

    Take your lousy bills and trash ‘em,
    Shake the plutocrats and bash ‘em!

    2nd Speaker:

    Such a sick economy,
    They screwed the poor, then came for me!

    3rd Speaker:

    Quack like a duck, jump like a monkey –
    Sing your song and make it funky!

    FINALE:

    We’re gonna go and rebuild New York City
    To quarantine the Wall Street parasites.
    Yes, we’re goin’ back to rebuild New York City.
    And make sure the economy works right.

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