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Occupy Wall Street 
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Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Because history has shown us that the "uanrmed protestors" will readily disperse as long as someone asks nicely and just says "please".


Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:20 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
johnny larue wrote:
Because history has shown us that the "uanrmed protestors" will readily disperse as long as someone asks nicely and just says "please".

I don't doubt that there is merit in your sarcastic use of quotation marks. Thankfully, that's not the issue I was commenting on.


Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:24 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Well there's cops and then there's cops. I have friends who are on the force; it isn't in NYC so I can't comment there, but sometimes you hear the stories and you realize that it's not the easiest job in the world. There are faces behind the riot gear too.

There was a local newspaper photographer who was arrested with some Occupy-style protesters here in MKE because they kept wandering into the street against police requests. The cops interviewed were frustrated because they had orders to keep the streets clear to let traffic through, and keep people from getting hit and everyone was blasting them for arresting a "reporter" like it was a media black-out, when it was because the reporter wasn't taking direction.

Different than an actual media black-out in NYC, but still.


Tue Nov 15, 2011 4:29 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Ken wrote:
When cops force the press out of a public location and use riot gear to disperse and arrest unarmed protestors under cover of media blackout, it ensures that the protest can no longer be dismissed from the national conversation.


There are a couple ways to look at this:

The police want to hide their actions and are going in to chew bubble gum and kick ass (sans gum) which would be a helluva lot more fun with nobody looking.

or

The police have seen the protestors' actions amplified by the presence of the media (ham for the camera) and have determined that with nobody looking the tantrums are minimized.


Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:17 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
I'm sure there was overreaction from both sides. The question is: what now?


Tue Nov 15, 2011 5:18 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Awf Hand wrote:
The police have seen the protestors' actions amplified by the presence of the media (ham for the camera) and have determined that with nobody looking the tantrums are minimized.
I find this notion terribly creepy--the idea that the police would have to hide their actions from public inquiry for any reason.

As for "what now?", I'd say that between the early days of the Tea Party and the current days of OWS, we're seeing more discontent and in a bigger cross-section of American people than we've seen for quite some time. As I said before, discontent itself isn't going to change anything, but I do think it's an important first step.

The hard part is going to be identifying and agreeing upon problems that are concrete and manageable, which is going to take rationality, and then devising solutions that are feasible and effective in the long run, which is going to take expertise and influence. Unfortunately, the very nature of our problems is resistant to all of these important characteristics.

In my more pessimistic moments, I would advocate that we pull a HAL 9000: let the system fail and the problems will rather quickly identify themselves.


Tue Nov 15, 2011 6:14 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
I'm probably the only person on this board whose actually been to the protest. I've been down there twice to march, but have been in close proximity to it for the past 3 months because (ironically) my girlfriend lives on Broadway, about spitting distance from Zucotti park. It's been quite the interesting experience to be there, and then to see all the reactions to it from people all over, the depictions in mainstream and underground outlets, etc.

To be honest, I'm not entirely convinced the protests are an effective means to bring about actual change. As far as a large group of people expressing their discontent, I'd say it has been much more successful.

The thing that bothers me most is how dismissive people are being. Yes, it's unorganized and there are a lot of varying opinions. Maybe some of the protesters are just lazy complainers who aren't getting off their asses and finding their own. This is all after the fact; that isn't a point that shouldn't even matter. When it comes down to it, corporate and special interests have too much control in our politics, and that is the root of all these problems. The greed of a few has systematically fucked over the vast majority of the population. Are corporations evil? Maybe, maybe not. But I think they can exist without the excesses that have caused so many people to suffer.

Getting a job wouldn't fix these peoples problems, nor any larger societal problems. Working just to survive is another form of slavery. Maybe if this was an actual "land of opportunity" with as even and fair a playing field as humanly possible, things would be different. There probably wouldn't be an OWS movement. But as it stands, the rich kids are getting a free ride in a limousine while the rest of us are being shot in both feet and told to walk.


Wed Nov 16, 2011 3:17 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Timmy Shoes wrote:
I think they can exist without the excesses that have caused so many people to suffer.


I agree with this very much.

Timmy Shoes wrote:
Working just to survive is another form of slavery. Maybe if this was an actual "land of opportunity" with as even and fair a playing field as humanly possible, things would be different. There probably wouldn't be an OWS movement. But as it stands, the rich kids are getting a free ride in a limousine while the rest of us are being shot in both feet and told to walk.


I do take issue with this though. Now, I don't think the fact that we have it better than any other country means we shouldn't stand up against wrongs being done to us, but things get taken to far. To act like there isn't more opportunities here than in virtually any other country or that we're enslaved to working when the number of people around the world who really can't get any job and are actually starving speaks to the American attitude of entitlement as much as anything else. How many OWS protesters have spent time protesting real atrocities around the world (including in our country)? I'm not talking about the homeless and the actually impoverished in America, I'm talking about the middle class (who do admittedly get very screwed by the system) who seem to forget that they are still wealthier and have more access to real opportunity than most of the world.


Wed Nov 16, 2011 4:33 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Shade wrote:
Timmy Shoes wrote:
Working just to survive is another form of slavery. Maybe if this was an actual "land of opportunity" with as even and fair a playing field as humanly possible, things would be different. There probably wouldn't be an OWS movement. But as it stands, the rich kids are getting a free ride in a limousine while the rest of us are being shot in both feet and told to walk.


I do take issue with this though. Now, I don't think the fact that we have it better than any other country means we shouldn't stand up against wrongs being done to us, but things get taken to far. To act like there isn't more opportunities here than in virtually any other country or that we're enslaved to working when the number of people around the world who really can't get any job and are actually starving speaks to the American attitude of entitlement as much as anything else. How many OWS protesters have spent time protesting real atrocities around the world (including in our country)? I'm not talking about the homeless and the actually impoverished in America, I'm talking about the middle class (who do admittedly get very screwed by the system) who seem to forget that they are still wealthier and have more access to real opportunity than most of the world.


You have a point, and a good one. Unfortunately altruism doesn't seem to be a natural part of human nature; most people just care about getting their own and/or providing for their family. There are global problems that are well within our means to fix, and easily, I'd say (world hunger anyone?). But we'd rather spend our money making bombs and consuming other countries' natural resources. As sad as it may be, fact of the matter is if this was a protest over the true atrocities of the world, nobody would be paying attention. However, while I do realize we Americans are very privileged, I do think the lines of "opportunity" draw thin once you're a pawn on somebody else's chessboard. There is a status quo that's trying to be kept here; they don't want favorable circumstances that would lead to actual growth, because that would upset said status quo. I'd make the claim that we should lead by example, but sadly our foreign policies generally make us guilty of keeping the status quo on a global scale as well as the domestic one.


Wed Nov 16, 2011 5:17 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Human beings are neither naturally altruistic nor naturally selfish. We respond according to our circumstances in the way that optimizes our chances of survival.

Once upon a time, before bartering and money were invented, people did stuff for each other without any thought of immediate compensation. The idea was that by contributing, you were helping to foster a community in which everybody had everybody else's back. If you didn't contribute, you became known as something of a deadbeat among your peers.

That was natural altruism in sense, albeit rationally motivated. Population sizes were small and far-flung. In those circumstances, that was how economies functioned best.

(You still see shades of it today in small sub-communities. For example, the workplace: say you want to take a few days off. You ask around to see if anybody can cover you on those days. People will usually volunteer as long as their schedules allow for it, with the implicit understanding that you would do the same for them if they wanted time off and you were available. That's the economics of small societies in a nutshell.)

In the larger and larger societies that followed, it would seem that the rewards of altruism became lesser and lesser. Nowadays, in the upper echelons of society, selfishness has become a virtue. Those who participate in altruism have to do it for its own sake.


Wed Nov 16, 2011 6:05 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Ken wrote:
In the larger and larger societies that followed, it would seem that the rewards of altruism became lesser and lesser. Nowadays, in the upper echelons of society, selfishness has become a virtue. Those who participate in altruism have to do it for its own sake.


I guess that makes me something of a contradiction as I DON'T agree with what I'm hearing out of OWS as I sit in my upper middle class domicile and stare down at the bandage on my arm from having just donated dual reds at the blood center tonight, and wonder where my next Junior Achievement assignment is going to start and fret about where the money is going to come from for this year's round of charitable donations.

Also, while US foreign policy is crap in some areas, look at where the billions of aid leaving the country are in others. You can't just insinuate that the US is a plague upon the earth.


Wed Nov 16, 2011 10:26 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
johnny larue wrote:
I guess that makes me something of a contradiction as I DON'T agree with what I'm hearing out of OWS as I sit in my upper middle class domicile and stare down at the bandage on my arm from having just donated dual reds at the blood center tonight, and wonder where my next Junior Achievement assignment is going to start and fret about where the money is going to come from for this year's round of charitable donations.
Without going too far out on a limb, I would characterize this as altruism for its own sake.

johnny larue wrote:
Also, while US foreign policy is crap in some areas, look at where the billions of aid leaving the country are in others. You can't just insinuate that the US is a plague upon the earth.
Speaking only for myself, I certainly don't think this, though I would certainly like to see fewer guns and more butter.


Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:45 am
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
johnny larue wrote:
Also, while US foreign policy is crap in some areas, look at where the billions of aid leaving the country are in others.


Ever hear of keeping up appearances? It's something of a ruse so that people with attitudes like yours' can claim we're not all that guilty. It's just another way of justifying our actions. Ever notice how selective we are in our so-called "aid?" Moreover, isn't it the American way to just throw money at a problem instead of looking at the reasons why these problems exist? To quote the great Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, "Philanthropy is commendable, but it must not cause the philanthropist to overlook the circumstances of economic injustice which make philanthropy necessary."

johnny larue wrote:
You can't just insinuate that the US is a plague upon the earth.


Those are your words, not mine.

What I don't understand about your viewpoint, Johnny, is that you seem convinced that the relationship between corporations, special interests and government hasn't effected you at all, which is the furthest from the truth. Maybe not as directly as some of the other people who have been affected, as you are clearly well off and can't be bothered with frivolous endeavors like trying to improve our system, but affected nonetheless.

I'll end with another MLKjr quote, cus he's the man.

"The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy."

EDIT: I'd just like to throw this out there; my experiences at the protest and the depictions of it on mainstream media outlets have been extremely different. Obviously I'm not down there 24/7 being a journalist, but people should keep in mind that what they see and hear on the television news is not always actuality (in fact, it never is).


Thu Nov 17, 2011 12:51 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Timmy Shoes wrote:
What I don't understand about your viewpoint, Johnny, is that you seem convinced that the relationship between corporations, special interests and government hasn't effected you at all, which is the furthest from the truth. Maybe not as directly as some of the other people who have been affected, as you are clearly well off and can't be bothered with frivolous endeavors like trying to improve our system, but affected nonetheless.


You are right...I am fairly well off. I also work for corporate America; not a decision maker mind you, but I am "in the system." I am all for getting business out of government, but I am also all for getting government out of business. The 100% Libertarian viewpoint is not mine; I do think there is a role in government oversight, but the level of regulatory overload in this country is off the charts. Government should also not be picking "winners and losers" with bailouts and crony capitalism.

I've still been waiting to hear from OWS on what steps they want to take to "drain the cesspool" of Washington, but mostly I just see people complaining about how much money other people are making, or how the government should be providing a whole bunch of stuff to them for nothing.


Thu Nov 17, 2011 1:15 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Now what I am curious of is where you are receiving your information about the occupation.

The protests is, admittedly, very unorganized. It does not have a central leader. I would not disagree that SOME have no idea what they're talking about, that they're just a bunch of dirty hippies complaining, but there are more than your fair share of educated people with reasonable ideas on how to change things. I have been there and seen first hand the disparity, and it certainly does exist, but for the most part I'd say that the majority of the protesters are peaceful and complaint.


Thu Nov 17, 2011 10:33 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Sorry...haven't been there...a bit far away for me. All I know is what I read online and in the papers. Read a deeper article in Time while donating blood yesterday, but the issue was a couple of weeks old...it mostly described the start of the movement but didn't have any recent quotes from anybody or anything.

Oh...and the big slogan of the "99%". I'm part of the 99% but I'm not ready to go camping just yet.


Last edited by johnny larue on Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:03 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Ken wrote:
Awf Hand wrote:
The police have seen the protestors' actions amplified by the presence of the media (ham for the camera) and have determined that with nobody looking the tantrums are minimized.


I find this notion terribly creepy--the idea that the police would have to hide their actions from public inquiry for any reason.


You know, when the campus police were putting in security cameras at my college, there were of course a few objections from certain parties. The police responded with "if you are committing no crimes, then you have nothing to worry about".

In situations like this, this concept does work both ways. If the police have nothing to hide, they have nothing to fear.
-Jeremy


Thu Nov 17, 2011 11:05 pm
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
thered47 wrote:
Ken wrote:
Awf Hand wrote:
The police have seen the protestors' actions amplified by the presence of the media (ham for the camera) and have determined that with nobody looking the tantrums are minimized.


I find this notion terribly creepy--the idea that the police would have to hide their actions from public inquiry for any reason.


You know, when the campus police were putting in security cameras at my college, there were of course a few objections from certain parties. The police responded with "if you are committing no crimes, then you have nothing to worry about".

In situations like this, this concept does work both ways. If the police have nothing to hide, they have nothing to fear.
-Jeremy


Maybe I wasn't clear in my original statement.

The police, realizing the protesters are using the media as tools, believe that with no cameras present the protesters will leave quietly instead of 'putting on a show' and feigning oppression or brutality.
Example:- My 4 year old drama-queen will "wilt" when she is being taken out of a room for misbehaving, but only if there is someone around to see her.
If no one is there to see it, there's no show. She just walks quietly.

I hope this is more clear.


Fri Nov 18, 2011 11:39 am
Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Awf Hand wrote:
Maybe I wasn't clear in my original statement.

The police, realizing the protesters are using the media as tools, believe that with no cameras present the protesters will leave quietly instead of 'putting on a show' and feigning oppression or brutality.
Example:- My 4 year old drama-queen will "wilt" when she is being taken out of a room for misbehaving, but only if there is someone around to see her.
If no one is there to see it, there's no show. She just walks quietly.

I hope this is more clear.


In Milwaukee yesterday, a bunch of "occupiers" blocked a major city street bridge in both directions. Our police officers showed up for a little while, the police chief said: "We're not going to fulfill the martyrdom fantasies of people who insist on being arrested while they disrupt the lives of this neighborhood." Then the police left with the chief saying "They can sit and freeze their butts off, I don't care." About 2 hours later, the "protesters" moved on. Pretty funny (IMO).


Fri Nov 18, 2011 12:24 pm
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Post Re: Occupy Wall Street
Everyone should read this article.

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Sat Nov 19, 2011 1:02 pm
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