Occupy Boston protesters evicted from Statehouse steps in anticipation of Brazilian president’s visit
The Massachusetts State Police have asked approximately 40 Occupy protesters who were camped outside the State House to move on Monday night.
State Police asked the protesters to move at the behest of the US Secret Service and in the interest of tightened security for Tuesday’s visit of the Brazilian president to the State House.
On the Occupation which has taken up the Massachusettes State House steps
Cue the Occupation, with these already debt saddled and marginalized groups being, yet again, targeted and raked over the coals by those granted authority to do so, so that, once again, some of the largest and most ruthless banks in the world can collect, it begins to makes sense that the sleeping bags and pillows have come out, and this time, there are demands; namely, “No Hikes, No Cuts, No Layoffs!” as the rallying call, but further, and just as serious, “A fully -funded, sustainable, and affordable transportation plan that works for the entire 99% of Massachusetts.”
This is Massachusetts,… and as Grace Ross of the Green rainbow Party informed onlookers and activists on Saturday at a teach in at “Camp Charlie”, the name of the Occupy Encampment on the State House steps, we are the third riches state in the country, it isn’t that the money isn’t there, it is that we aren’t willing to go and get it from those who have it.
Occupy foreclosure stories in the media
In foreclosures, Occupy groups see a unifying cause
Interviews with Occupy activists in 11 states show groups from coast to coast have taken up foreclosure fights through rallies, home occupations and court appearances.
Matt Browner Hamlin of occupyourhomes.org, a national group focused on this cause, counts “more than 100 Occupy groups” that have taken direct action or formed foreclosure working groups.
Nine charged in ‘Occupy’ foreclosure protest at Raleigh home
Raleigh police arrested nine people Monday who were accused of trespassing at a foreclosed Raleigh home during a protest over predatory lending by Wall Street banks.
The protest was planned by the Occupy Raleigh and Occupy Greensboro groups.
. . .
The Occupy groups said they planned the rally because of evidence of robo-signing – an illegal procedure by mortgage industry employees to initiate improper foreclosures – in Shelton’s case.
Occupy transit stories in media
Detroit Protests Public Transportation Cuts
Occupy Detroit’s followers organized a candlelight wake at the Rosa Parks Transit Center to commemorate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s life and support demonstrators nationwide for National Day of Action for Public Transportation.
In California, cash windfall from global warming program could shower bullet train projects with billions in new funding
For the past 10 years, California has struggled with huge budget deficits and wrenching cuts. Suddenly, however, the state is poised to raise billions from an unusual new source: the proceeds from its landmark global warming law. The windfall could come as soon as this fall, when state officials are set to begin auctioning off pollution credits to oil refineries, power plants and other major polluters as part of a new “cap-and-trade” system.
The amounts are potentially enormous: from $1 billion to $3 billion a year in 2012 and 2013, jumping to as high as $14 billion a year by 2015, according to the nonpartisan state Legislative Analyst’s Office. By comparison, the state’s current budget deficit is $9 billion.
But like thirsty castaways on an island surrounded by ocean water they can’t drink, Gov. Jerry Brown and state legislators face strict constraints on how they can spend the money. More than 30 years of court rulings and ballot measures — dating to Proposition 13 in 1978 — limit its use, probably only to projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Gov. Brown and others in the Capitol are cautiously making plans. On Monday, the state’s High-Speed Rail Authority slipped into a news release that the money would be used as “a backstop” that could save the struggling bullet-train project.
Occupy Delaware to attend Delaware Transit hearings for support of Rodney Square bus stops
Occupy Delaware plans to attend two Delaware Transit Corp. hearings Tuesday, April 10 to support the traditional Rodney Square transit hub.
The group has objected to the planned removal of two DART bus stops in Rodney Square. The change is to take effect beginning June 17.
Occupy fights back against lawless finance stories
Kevin Zeese: Oligarchs Vs The People Global Battle
How Occupy Wall Street Plans to Take Down Bank of America, and How You Can Help
Occupy Wall Street has decided to fight back. “This bank is not working, and the people should be deciding how to break up this bank, how it should be democratically run, before it gets either another bailout or is bought out by some other bank,” Nelini Stamp, an Occupy Wall Street participant and organizer, told AlterNet.
Washington Post: Occupy Wall Street plans to ‘take down’ Bank of America
Occupy Wall Street protesters say they plan to “take down” Bank of America on Friday by encouraging people to remove their money from the bank.
The “Move Your Money Relay” will include escorting people out of Bank of America branches to help them move their funds to community banks and local credit unions.
Members of the Occupy movement, who have long resisted making specific demands or adopting a leader, say they think that in the case of Bank of America, more specific action is needed.
Getting Real About Wealth Addiction
The Occupy Wall Street and the 99 Percent Movement named the core issue of our time: the overwhelming power of Wall Street and large corporations. Now it’s time we named the problem underlying this issue. It’s called addiction. I’ve been treating addicts for more than 40 years and when I hear the descriptions of those for whom millions and billions of dollars in wealth drives them to want more and more, I know we’re dealing with addiction.
Philip Slater has an A.B. and Ph.D. from Harvard and taught sociology at Harvard, Brandeis and UCSC. He is the author of numerous books including Wealth Addiction. He says:
“Those who devote their entire lives to amassing or retaining huge sums of money are neurotically addicted, trying to fill an inner void with money. And since such psychic voids cannot be filled with money — any more than with alcohol, tobacco, cocaine, food, or sex — even a billion dollars doesn’t satisfy them.”
Why Obama’s JOBS Act Couldn’t Suck Worse
Boy, do I feel like an idiot. I’ve been out there on radio and TV in the last few months saying that I thought there was a chance Barack Obama was listening to the popular anger against Wall Street that drove the Occupy movement, that decisions like putting a for-real law enforcement guy like New York AG Eric Schneiderman in charge of a mortgage fraud task force meant he was at least willing to pay lip service to public outrage against the banks.
Then the JOBS Act happened.
The “Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act” (in addition to everything else, the Act has an annoying, redundant title) will very nearly legalize fraud in the stock market.
In fact, one could say this law is not just a sweeping piece of deregulation that will have an increase in securities fraud as an accidental, ancillary consequence. No, this law actually appears to have been specifically written to encourage fraud in the stock markets.
Trayvon Martin stories in the media
Trayvon Martin death won’t go to Fla. grand jury
A grand jury will not look into the Trayvon Martin case, a special prosecutor said Monday, leaving the decision of whether to charge the teen’s shooter in her hands alone and eliminating the possibility of a first-degree murder charge.
That prosecutor, Angela Corey, said her decision had no bearing on whether she would file charges against George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer who has said he shot the unarmed black teen in self-defense. Corey could still decide to charge him with a serious felony such as manslaughter, which can carry a lengthy prison sentence if he is convicted.
Sacramento activists to participate in National Hoodie Day
Sacramento activists, including Occupy and other community groups, announced they will participate in National Hoodie Day on Tuesday to protest the shooting death of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.
99% Spring in the media, pro and con
Con: Did MoveOn rip off Occupy? – Occupiers fear that the organization’s new 99 Percent Spring campaign will co-opt their message
The fear is that the 99 Percent Spring of “people power” multiplying across the country will do so in a way that lacks the radical and experimental nature that characterized what many of us saw to be Occupy’s most important and beautiful moments.
Pro: Penn Badgley, Zoe Kravitz & Olivia Wilde: 99% Spring PSA!
Occupy and the media stories in the news
Photographer injured while filming arrests of Occupy Minn. Protestors
A KSTP-TV photojournalist was sore Sunday after a police officer knocked the camera off his shoulder without warning while he was filming the arrests of Occupy Minnesota protesters.
Twelve demonstrators were arrested about 11 p.m. Saturday for blocking traffic and being a public nuisance.
KSTP-TV news director Lindsay Radford says cameraman Chad Nelson was filming the arrests when an officer knocked his camera to the ground. Radford says the camera was damaged, and Nelson has some whiplash.
Mpls. police chief critical of officer aggression after photojournalist injured
The Minneapolis police chief acknowledges that one of his officers may have gone too far by knocking a television camera off the shoulder of a KSTP-TV employee.
Police Chief Timothy Dolan said Monday he conducted a preliminary review of a video of the incident. He says the officer’s interference “does not appear to be necessary.” He also says if that’s the case, he is “very disappointed.”
Mpls. Mayor to Meet With Occupy Protesters; Police Chief Apologizes to KSTP Photojournalist
Mayor R.T. Rybak agreed Monday to hold a public meeting with Occupy Minneapolis activists about the arrests of a dozen protesters over the weekend.
His staff agreed to meet Tuesday afternoon with the activists after about 50 chanting protesters marched into Rybak’s office to demand he address what they said was police brutality on Saturday. They said the mayor will take questions during the forum, which will be held at City Hall.
Occupiers are demanding a plan from the mayor to ensure that police brutality won’t occur in the future, organizer Ben Egerman said. He and others present Saturday said police roughly handcuffed protesters and threw them onto concrete sidewalks.
Occupy confronts lying politicians and government bureaucrats
Occupy Santa Ana plans action to show how Orange County officials are lying about the adequacy of homeless services there
Occupy Santa Ana activists plan a Tuesday afternoon action in hopes of demonstrating the alarming lack of available shelter space for Orange County’s homeless population.
The plan, which is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. and is called Shelter Tel-a-Thon, involves activists calling emergency county shelters, determining how much space is available and then providing bus passes to sites with beds.
Based on past frustrating experiences, the Occupy folks believe that most, if not all, of the shelters will reject new clients. They say county officials, who claim that the area’s 500 beds are adequate, are misinformed at best and obfuscating a nightmare situation at worst.
Detroit Consent Agreement: Opposition Still Simmering
Opponents of Detroit’s consent agreement with the state of Michigan made a last-ditch effort Monday to get City Council to reverse their vote on the measure, which puts the city under state oversight.
In a 5-4 vote last week, Council approved the agreement, which creates a nine-person financial advisory board to manage the city’s budget.
Representatives of Concerned Citizens For Democracy, a coalition of groups that includes Occupy Detroit, Rainbow-PUSH, AFSCME, ministers and a mix of African-American sororities and fraternities, spoke before Council Monday morning to request the body change their earlier decision.
Occupy resurgent media articles
Occupy Philadelphia once again setup a physical camp in the city this past weekend, this time in Independence Mall. The re-debut of a temporarily claimed territory highlighted the longevity of the Occupy movement, a series of actions that calls out issues of wealth disparity and educational inequalities, among others.
“Friday marked our six-month anniversary, celebrating the progress we’ve made as a whole over the past six months, including the four months in which we did not physically occupy a space,” junior film major Steph Irwin said. “It was great to see comrades and familiar faces at the reoccupation, but to be honest, I haven’t stopped interacting with them since the physical eviction in November.”
Protesters Hold ‘Spring Training’ at Zuccotti Park
About 100 people were gathered inside Zuccotti Park on Friday as Zak Solomon stood on a granite bench and offered instruction on protest tactics with names like “Melt,” “Wall,” and “The People’s Gong.”
While demonstrating the last, Mr. Solomon, an Occupy Wall Street organizer, was joined by Jason Shelton, 28, from Greenpoint, who contrasted the People’s Gong with the bell that closes the New York Stock Exchange.
The bell, Mr. Shelton declared, symbolizes “the validation of greed over mutual aid,” whereas the gong is a “call to fight against this injustice.”
Ahead of NATO Summit, Occupy Launches ‘Chicago Spring’
When the city of Chicago plays host to the NATO summit next month, it will also become a focal point of activity for the newly re-energized Occupy movement-and expectations are high for a showdown between police and protesters.
But though the upcoming demonstrations have been discussed most often in terms of ominous (and often historically dubious) comparisons to the 1968 Democratic National Convention, the first event of the “Chicago Spring” this Saturday took a decidedly different tone. In a community festival attended by more than 1,000, Chicago occupiers marked the revival of a movement that has grown more mature and broad-based than when it was last seen outdoors in similar numbers.
Though a number of activists held signs that read “We’re Back,” Occupy Chicago organizers were quick to point out that the movement never really left-it has been building strength while meeting in an indoor location during the winter. But actions held downtown during the first months of 2012 were often poorly attended as the movement in Chicago, as elsewhere, struggled with the question of how important a continued outdoor presence was to its success.
Occupy and civil rights/police repression in the media
In NYC, DA Drops Charges Against Councilman Over OWS Activity
City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, who was arrested Nov. 15 at Zuccotti Park, has had charges of resisting arrest and obstructing governmental administration dismissed, his office announced last week.
Mr. Rodriguez, a sympathizer with the Occupy Wall Street movement, said he went to the park to observe the NYPD as it drove away demonstrators. Three blocks south of the park, he said at a news conference after his arrest, cops knocked him to the ground and arrested him although he identified himself as a City Councilman. He said officers didn’t allow him to see a lawyer for 13 hours.
Judge Says New Haven May Remove Occupy Protestors
Federal court Judge Mark Kravitz has denied a motion by Occupy New Haven protestors seeking an injunction barring their removal from the New Haven Green.
The judge says the City of New Haven will be allowed to begin enforcing its rules governing use of the Green as of noon Tuesday.
When the cops subpoena your Facebook information, here’s what Facebook sends the cops
In fact, we’d never seen an executed Facebook subpoena before — but here we have one, including the forms that Boston Police filed to obtain the information, and the printed (on paper!) response that Facebook sent back, which includes text printouts of Markoff’s wall posts, photos he uploaded as well as photos he was tagged in, a comprehensive list of friends with their Facebook IDs (which we’ve redacted), and a long table of login and IP data.
This document was publicly released by Boston Police as part of the case file. In other case documents, the police have clearly redacted sensitive information. And while the police were evidently comfortable releasing Markoff’s unredacted Facebook subpoena, we weren’t. Markoff may be dead, but the very-much-alive friends in his friend list were not subpoenaed, and yet their full names and Facebook ID’s were part of the document. So we took the additional step of redacting as much identifying information as we could — knowing that any redaction we performed would be imperfect, but believing that there’s a strong argument for distributing this, not only for its value in illustrating the Markoff case, but as a rare window into the shadowy process by which Facebook deals with law enforcement.
As far as we can tell, nobody’s ever seen what one of these looks like — and we’re hoping the social media, law, and privacy experts out there can glean insight from it:
Occupy victories in the media
Millionaire’s Tax Backers Compromise With California Governor
On Wednesday, an advisor to Jerry Brown announced the suspension of signature-gathering on a tax referendum California’s governor had previously pushed for the November ballot. Brown’s move follows a deal reached last month with backers of a more progressive alternative, the “Millionaire’s Tax.” Unions that spent months backing two competing referenda have now coalesced behind a compromise-though not everyone from the old Millionaire’s Tax coalition is on board.
. . .
Pechthalt says it’s a victory worth celebrating. He notes that a year ago, Democrats and labor were poised to support even an “overwhelmingly regressive” tax proposal because “it seemed to be the only viable option for generating more revenue.” That attempt at a bipartisan deal died, says Pechthalt, only because Brown could not find Republicans to back it. He credits Occupy, student activism, and the Millionaire’s Tax for transforming the sense of what’s possible in the year since. Under the new measure, says Pechthalt, “the regressive piece has been cut in half.” In the first year, nine billion would be raised-two billion more will be raised than under the old Millionaire’s Tax, and eight of the nine billion would come from the income tax hike.
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