Do everything possible to bring about positive constructive change.
It is clear that we have much larger numbers of allies among Democratic legislators, and few or none among republicans.
It is clear that the system is compromised, and that enormous pressure must be put on the system to bring about the tension that leads to positive constructive change, particularly toward equality.
I firmly believe that, if we put a Democratic majority in both Houses 2012, and Obama back in the WH, that we will attain marriage and employment equality under federal law at sometime within the next 2-4 years.
The RW agenda must be continually and relentlessly exposed and defeated on every front by every non-violent means available.
With regard to the protection afforded us by the judicial system:
Whoever is President from 2013 to 2017 will be appointing one or more SCOTUS justices. Do we want Obama to appoint these justices, or a Mormon, like Mitt Romney, a phony RW fundamentalist freak like Newt Gingrich, or crazy lady Michelle Bachmann, appointing these justices?
This should be a no brainer for our community, (excepting maybe Log Cabin Republicans, speaking of no brainers).
Here is a quote attributed to Plato:
“One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors."
Here is a quote from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., "Letter From A Birmingham Jail":
"You may well ask: "Why direct action? Why sit ins, marches and so forth? Isn't negotiation a better path?" You are quite right in calling for negotiation. Indeed, this is the very purpose of direct action. Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks so to dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored. My citing the creation of tension as part of the work of the nonviolent resister may sound rather shocking. But I must confess that I am not afraid of the word "tension." I have earnestly opposed violent tension, but there is a type of constructive, nonviolent tension which is necessary for growth. Just as Socrates felt that it was necessary to create a tension in the mind so that individuals could rise from the bondage of myths and half truths to the unfettered realm of creative analysis and objective appraisal, so must we see the need for nonviolent gadflies to create the kind of tension in society that will help men rise from the dark depths of prejudice and racism to the majestic heights of understanding and brotherhood. The purpose of our direct action program is to create a situation so crisis packed that it will inevitably open the door to negotiation. I therefore concur with you in your call for negotiation..."
Equality and Solidarity
(edits for spelling and math errors)
There are many here that are traditional labor/human rights Democrats who can see the obvious: That the Dem party and many Dem elected representatives have been co-opted by the DLC/Third Way and their 1% sponsors.
Liberals see themselves as way more liberal than DLC/Third Way supporting Democrats, because the DLC/Third Way has embraced the fundamental ideological core of the GOP, which is that the desires and artificial rights of global free trade commercial wealthy private interests take precedence over the the desires and natural rights of human beings.
The divide between traditional Dems and DLC/Third Way Democrats is corporatism, and this divide is almost as deep as the divide between traditional Democrats and the GOP.
We completely resent the forced implementation and adoption of GOP core ideology into our party that occurred solely because of the influence of the wealth that wealthy private commercial interests used to co-opt our party.
They paid their way into the party in order to further their profit agenda, just as they pay candidates and legislators to further their profit agenda, just like they always do.
Essentially, we see the DLC/Third Way as ideological, and at times, legislative, allies of the GOP. And we don't like it at all.
This is a primary reason for the rapid rise and spread of OWS.
Of course, this is only my take, and I really can't speak for anyone else.
There is a lot of very insincere opposition to OWS going around, and various insincere criticisms as well, and I took your post the wrong way.
A lot of people are hurting because greedy banksters found a way to circumvent or remove the regulations that formerly prevented them from causing this damage. They are currently circumventing all attempts to re-regulate them, and regulate them even further, to prevent them from doing it again. They have so much wealth and power that our legislative and judicial systems appear to be powerless to control them and prevent them from causing further damage and assuming more control.
Having engaged in numerous protests for different reasons over several decades, I'm kind of burnt on people complaining about it when we take direct action on things that desperately need to be addressed, and will never be addressed unless direct action forces the issue.
It happens every time. The status quo gets in our face and uses every possible avenue to try to destroy the movement before it can begin to effect the changes in the national dialogue that lead to changes in the collective consciousness and ultimately to the practical implementation of the critical changes that we seek to bring about.
But there are a lot of people out there that have no idea about all this. They get stuck in traffic because of a direct action, and all they see is what they perceive as a bunch of stupid hippies with signs that don't make much sense to them, like Rush Limbaugh is so vehemently explaining to them as they sit there stalled in traffic.
The irony in this is that these people are partly responsible for the direct action that they see as keeping them from whatever is more important to them than understanding and subsequently possibly supporting the reason for the direct action. If enough of them had been paying attention over the years, it is very possible that the banksters could have been prevented from compromising our legislative and judicial system. But it is what it is, and it is frustrating.
So it comes down to this: Do we just sit there and watch and do nothing as things continue to get worse, because we might make some people temporarily uncomfortable, or do we take action and do what is necessary to force the changes that will inevitably result in more equality and justice for almost everyone?
The founders of this nation had to have asked this same question to themselves. As did Gandhi, Lincoln, Alice Paul, Martin Luther King, Cesar Chavez, etc., and all the faceless nameless people that ever engaged in direct action tactics on behalf of a sincere struggle to bring about equality and justice for themselves and others.
All that said, after further reflection, I recognize now that your post was genuine and sincere, and meant as positive constructive criticism.
I was out of line with my post, and I so totally sincerely apologize for this and for my thoughtlessness as well.
Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Coalition Dubs Occupy Phoenix the 'Mississippi of this Movement'
Sunday Dec. 4 marked day 50 of Occupy Phoenix. The movement that many pundits dismissed as the political equivalent of "Seinfeld" i.e., a movement about nothing--scored a triple play of successes this week.
First was a loud protest against the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) which held its members-only States and Nations Policy Summit at the swank Westin Kierland Resort in Scottsdale. ALEC bills itself as a "nonpartisan individual membership organization of state legislators which favors federalism and conservative public policy solutions." In Arizona this has translated, for example, to the "construction of private prisons as for profit entities.
At last count 50 members of the Arizona legislature were full-fledged members of ALEC, which also includes corporations like Exxon, WalMart and Koch Industries. The organization gets together and comes up with legislation that benefits private companies. This time however, thanks to 200+ protestors from Occupy Phoenix and allied groups, local media actually took an interest in all things ALEC. Especially after Phoenix PD began pepper-spraying and arresting protestors.
Meanwhile, back at the Occupy ranch - er - plaza, the Rev. Jesse Jackson showed up Nov. 30 to offer support to Occupiers huddled against the cold of a rare winter storm. Jackson returned the next day to lead a march and rally, greatly reinvigorating everyone's spirits. After surveying the daunting odds faced by Occupy Phoenix in a state most recently deemed the fourth worst-run in the nation and home to Sheriff Joe Arpaio, the National Field Director of Jackson's Rainbow PUSH Coalition, Bishop T. Lane Grant, deemed Occupy Phoenix "the Mississippi of this movement" and vowed to lend continued assistance.
"Occupy Phoenix is the Mississippi of this Movement"
(That's Occupy Phoenix singing "We Shall Overcome")
Rev. Jackson speaks with Occupy Phoenix, (very, very worth listening to)
from changing Senate rules anytime they wish. The Constitution, Article 1, Section 5, states:
The Senate and House each sets its own rules, disciplines its own members, and by a two-thirds vote can expel a member. Censure and lesser punishments require only a majority vote.
If Reid sincerely wants to end the 60 vote rule, all he has to do is appeal the ruling of the parliamentarian. All he would need is a simple majority of 51 votes to do this. Once done, this changes Senate rules from that point on.
No more 60 vote "rule". A 51 vote majority becomes the rule.
Simple as that.
It is my opinion that the 60 vote rule is a rule designed to protect the 1% from the will of the 99%. It enables the legislators that serve the will of the 1% to prevent passage of legislation desired by the 99% that is against the needs and desires of the 1%.
It's an excuse. Dems could have ended the filibuster early in 2009 and could have passed almost any legislation favorable to the 1%. But the 60 vote rule gave them an excuse to say that they could not do it because of the filibuster.
As of 2009, the basic reason for the filibuster, to strengthen the ability of the minority to check the majority, became moot. The filibuster at that point became a weapon for the republican senate employees of the 1% for blocking legislation beneficial to the 99%. The question remains as to why Senate Dems did not end the filibuster at that point, when so many of us saw immediately that this would be an ongoing tactic used by senate republicans.
Here is an example of how Harry Reid recently changed Senate rules temporarily:
Reid triggers ‘nuclear option’ to change Senate rules, end repeat filibusters
By Alexander Bolton - 10/06/11 08:10 PM ET
Occupy supporters, and everyone who believes in equality and democracy...
"Keep hope alive. The truth will prevail."
We marched, sometimes arm in arm, through Phoenix in the rain. There were no differences. No races, young, old, male, female, rich, poor, straight, GLBT. We were just a collective of equal human beings. The feeling was beautiful. And powerful.
When we got back to camp, Rev. Jackson spoke, on our human mic. He spoke of his days with Dr. King, of Cesar Chavez, and others that traveled this difficult road that we now travel as Occupiers.
We sang "We Shall Overcome" along with Rev. Jackson. I cried. It was so very, very good. It was good.
Rev. Jackson closed with these words, and we repeated on our human mic:
"Keep hope alive. The truth will prevail."
We are the 99%.
Long Live Occupy!
for peacefully expressing my 1st amendment rights in the past. Or more recently, participating in OWS General Assemblies and other constructive actions intended to promote positive action on behalf or the 99%. So that negative inference as to my character in your post is not at all accurate.
Prior to the 2008 election, I independently actively and enthusiastically campaigned for Democrats, I was excited and hopeful.
By the elections of 2010, after so much bitter disappointment at the sincere lack of effort by Democrats, I could barely drag myself to the polls and vote. It became clear at that point, because Democrats had not addressed or acknowledged the root cause of almost all the problems faced by our nation, that the party had to a great extent been co-opted by the 1%.
You can go on beating a dead horse and hoping it somehow miraculously gets you to your destination. I most sincerely wish you the greatest success, unless, of course, it is your desire and intention to further the control that wealthy private interests have over our country, our government, and our lives. Happy trails.
Let me know how that works out for you.
Personally, I'm going to ride my very alive, vibrant, and vital OWS horse to get to my destination, which also appears to be the primary collective destination of OWS, and that is: Permanent egalitarian democratic and economic control of our lives by the 99%.
If, at some point in the future, Democrats make it their #1 priority - make a sincere, focused, and intense effort to draft and enact a constitutional amendment that removes all the money from controlling political campaigns and government itself, my faith in the Democratic party may be restored, and I will once again enthusiastically promote and support the Democratic party right along with you.
From the bottom of my heart, I would be ecstatic.
Until then, meh.
This yellowdog is not going to waste much more of her valuable time on worthless blue dogs that won't hunt.
subsequently try do whatever is genuinely possible to remedy the problem, instead of ignoring the problem completely and subsequently allowing it to become more serious.
Ignoring problems long enough most often causes the problems to become irreparable.
It is possible to constructively criticize a political entity for the purposes of highlighting and hopefully solving problems within that entity and still (albeit hesitantly) support it at the same time. It's not easy to support a political body that almost completely refuses to acknowledge critical problems.
Flag waving and hiding heads in the sand does nothing to solve problems and incurs justified disrespect from perceptive, pragmatic people that explore and actively attempt to employ every avenue for redress of problems.
At some point, there may be some that abandon the aforementioned political entity if it appears to them that all hope of employing effective solutions is gone.
This often occurs when the leaders of a political entity like the Democratic party not only fail to legislate solutions to critical problems, but fail to sincerely and directly publicly acknowledge them.
I'm still here, but my faith is waning. When we got our mandate in 2008, the most critical problem that our country has ever faced, specifically, control of the government by wealthy private interests, the 1%, was not addressed, or even mentioned (except possibly by vague reference), by Democratic leaders. This problem is the essential root of most of the other problems our nation faces.
We need to dig up this root and burn it, before we can make any significant progress toward solving the problems that grow from this vile and diseased root.
That is why I am putting my energy and resources into OWS. OWS is all about addressing and solving the most critical problem our nation has ever faced through raising awareness and engaging in direct action.
I'll vote straight D simply because the entire GOP agenda is to further control of our country and government by the 1%.
But my heart is not in it like it once was, and the DLC/Third Way is completely and absolutely to blame for my loss of faith, hope, and enthusiam.
some photos of a bizarre modern cultural phenomenon of mass spontaneous hysteria instilled deep into the subconscious of this unique, arguably primitive, culture by a council of snakecharmers known as marketers. These marketers are engaged and compensated by the Chiefs that own the culture, often commonly referred to as plutarchs, or the 1%, in order to mass hypnotize the culture into slavery, and giving tribute to the Chiefs. These photos are actual photos of mass induced hysteria that occurs on a holy day to this culture known as Black Friday. Collateral human sacrifice is rare, but has been known to occur.
From my cultural perspective, this phenomenon is the epitome of "goofy", but it is the custom, or possibly the religion, of this culture, and it is their choice:
That's what this is all about.
"Most of the cast that you meet on the streets speak of true love,
Most of the time they're sittin' and cryin' at home.
One of these days they know they better get goin'
Out of the door and down on the streets all alone."
Truckin', The Grateful Dead
words by Robert Hunter
The American colonist's movements for freedom got lots of bad press, as did the movement in India, and movements for civil rights, women's rights, the abolition movement, and the GLBT human rights movement.
I'm totally done with having my life be partially determined by a bunch of greedy, airheaded, privileged from birth spoiled rotten rich kids.
We can't let bad press stop us. If we don't do it, no one is going to do it for us.
In all seriousness, I'm really not thrilled about driving to LA and spending $500+ to try to send this message to the PTB. I'm not rich. There are many other things I would rather be doing, many other things that I can use the money for.
But there is not much in this world that is more important than doing this right now, and unless someone comes up with a more effective alternative real quick, I'm going to do what I can to free myself, my family, and my country from the control of the 1%.
The sacrifice is worth the potential gain.
People that sit around pissing and moaning, speculating on vague possibilities and maybe ifs, and not ever really doing anything about their situation, never get anything done except to allow things to continue to get worse and worse.
may have their great human needs satisfied; that those now denied opportunity shall come to enjoy it to the full; that all who yearn for freedom may experience its spiritual blessings; that those who have freedom will understand, also, its heavy responsibilities; that all who are insensitive to the needs of others will learn charity; that the scourges of poverty, disease and ignorance will be made to disappear from the earth, and that, in the goodness of time, all peoples will come to live together in a peace guaranteed by the binding force of mutual respect and love."
President Eisenhower, 1961
They were spoken by a Republican president.
How times have changed.
In many ways, the quote above could define the ultimate goals of OWS.
How the 99% successfully fights back when they have no representation in government, and their lives are governed by oligarchal financial empire.
In Boston, the arrival of three tea ships ignited a furious reaction. The crisis came to a head on December 16, 1773 when as many as 7,000 agitated locals milled about the wharf where the ships were docked. A mass meeting at the Old South Meeting House that morning resolved that the tea ships should leave the harbor without payment of any duty. A committee was selected to take this message to the Customs House to force release of the ships out of the harbor. The Collector of Customs refused to allow the ships to leave without payment of the duty. Stalemate. The committee reported back to the mass meeting and a howl erupted from the meeting hall. It was now early evening and a group of about 200 men, some disguised as Indians, assembled on a near-by hill. Whopping war chants, the crowd marched two-by-two to the wharf, descended upon the three ships and dumped their offending cargos of tea into the harbor waters.
Most colonists applauded the action while the reaction in London was swift and vehement. In March 1774 Parliament passed the Intolerable Acts which among other measures closed the Port of Boston. The fuse that led directly to the explosion of American independence was lit.
When we arrived at the wharf, there were three of our number who assumed an authority to direct our operations, to which we readily submitted. They divided us into three parties, for the purpose of boarding the three ships which contained the tea at the same time. The name of him who commanded the division to which I was assigned was Leonard Pitt. The names of the other commanders I never knew. We were immediately ordered by the respective commanders to board all the ships at the same time, which we promptly obeyed. The commander of the division to which I belonged, as soon as we were on board the ship, appointed me boatswain, and ordered me to go to the captain and demand of him the keys to the hatches and a dozen candles. I made the demand accordingly, and the captain promptly replied, and delivered the articles; but requested me at the same time to do no damage to the ship or rigging. We then were ordered by our commander to open the hatches and take out all the chests of tea and throw them overboard, and we immediately proceeded to execute his orders, first cutting and splitting the chests with our tomahawks, so as thoroughly to expose them to the effects of the water.
In about three hours from the time we went on board, we had thus broken and thrown overboard every tea chest to be found in the ship, while those in the other ships were disposing of the tea in the same way, at the same time. We were surrounded by British armed ships, but no attempt was made to resist us.
Public Opinion, current age:
Genuine Financial Terrorism, 2008 and beyond:
Three weeks that changed the world
It started in a mood of eerie calm, but then 2008 exploded into a global financial earthquake. Nick Mathiason and Heather Stewart look back at events that shook, and brought down, giants
It was the year the neo-liberal economic orthodoxy that ran the world for 30 years suffered a heart attack of epic proportions. Not since 1929 has the financial community witnessed 12 months like it. Lehman Brothers went bankrupt. Merrill Lynch, AIG, Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, HBOS, Royal Bank of Scotland, Bradford & Bingley, Fortis, Hypo and Alliance & Leicester all came within a whisker of doing so and had to be rescued.
Western leaders, who for years boasted about the self-evident benefits of light-touch regulation, had to sink trillions of dollars to prevent the world bank system collapsing.
The ramifications of the Banking Collapse of 2008 will be felt for years if not decades to come. Here, Observer writers pick out the three pivotal weeks that shaped a year of unforgettable and remarkable events.
Any more questions?
it immediately and universally raises this question in the minds of the liberals/progressives among us:
"What is this person hiding, and why is s/he hiding it?"
Speaking and writing using vague, winding, general, non-specific terms and phrases when addressing specific issues/events makes the intentions of the speaker/writer immediately come into question.
Folks garner a great deal more respect and support when they speak/write honestly, directly, transparently, and understandably, so that the intent of their communication is perfectly clear to anyone with a reasonable command of the English language.
Many liberals/progressives immediately distrust anyone that speaks, or writes, evasively and non-transparently.
This is part of the reason why the consensus form/process of leadership employed by OWS is effective.
If someone has something to say, then say it. Tell us clearly where you really stand.
Don't try to hide behind vague, mangled, condescending gobbledy-goop circular communication because you don't want anyone to know what you really believe. End of story.
Most of us know immediately when someone is trying to bullshit us by lying, being deliberately evasive and/or obtuse, or is using standard propaganda speech/devices with the intention of deliberately deceiving others.
In summation, I'd just like to say,
"Well, the dog might have eaten my homework, he was in the house when it disappeared, but maybe I lost it somewhere, I dunno, or whatever, but something happened to it, and Fido is a usually a good dog, and besides that, yesterday I found a sack of quarters by the side of the road, and wouldn't have found it if Fido had not peed on a tree, so everything always works out for the best, but we may have to do something about this, and hope everything goes well."
It's always best to just say, "Mom, I didn't do my homework". Mom can always tell when the kids are fibbing or hiding something, by their words and their body language.
Honesty, sincerity, candidness, and transparency universally earn the trust and respect of good people.
Let the unrecs begin.
To draw any analogy between a long standing political party like the GOP that has all the power and wealth of the entire 1% behind it, and a ragtag bohemian fledgling democratic movement like OWS is unreasonable. The GOP has every status quo means at their disposable to create public opinion.
How is OWS running 180 degees from Dems? OWS is espousing and promoting the long standing traditional essential ideology of the Democratic Party, the core principle of supporting the 99% over the 1%, a principle that has all but been abandoened since the DLC/Third Way co-opted the party.
If you believe that OWS, with its unquestionable pro labor, pro human rights, pro-regulation of corporations, etc, is running 180 degrees from the Democratic party, then what does the Democratic Party now stand for in your estimation? All that is left is representation of wealth and commercial interests, the same agenda that the GOP has.
It is entirely reasonable to believe that the folks in Wisconsin, and OWS, were part of the reason for the widespread gains by labor and the Dems in the last election. It is not unreasonable to believe that the same could hold true for the elections of 2012, due to the anti-1% national dialogue created by labor and Dems in Wisconsin and OWS. Dems will get collateral benefit from OWS without OWS having to adopt a political position.
OWS is the complete total natural antithesis of the GOP. Everything they do and stand for are the very things we are trying to eliminate.
It's a complete shame that the Democratic party does not adopt this position to counteract the GOP and the 1%. We wouldn't be forced into doing their job for them if they did.
The 1% will not have to embrace social or economic justice, we already know that they will never do this under any circumstances. That's the reason they took over the government. So that they could have total control. .
That's why OWS came into being. We are going to non-violently remove the 1% from any position of control through the sheer power of numbers. There are billions of us, and only a few thousand of them. They will be forced to voluntarily abdicate their position of power if it comes down to it. Does the name "Custer" mean anything to you? Their criminal co-opting of our government and of our ability to govern ourselves gives us the absolute right to stop them by any non-violent means we find necessary. They have assumed illegitimate power over our government and our destinies, and it is our natural right to employ whatever methods we find necessary to regain our rights and abilities to determine our own destinies, lives, liberties, and pursuits of happiness.
The law making process is broken. Congress is controlled by the 1% and will never take any effective measures whatsoever to redress our grievances.
We are either going to have to force them to redress our grievances through direct action and subsequent egalitarian negotiations, or create an alternative system that will eventually supplant existing government.
Like the colonists that fought off the British in our War for Independence, the exact circumstances under which our grievances will at last be redressed are unknowable. But we do know that the status quo is unacceptable, and that it is a hopeless case.
Things have to change, and we are going to change them come hell or high water.
There is no other option. It's literally a matter of the survival of the planet.
It is a guarantee that the 1% would devise a foolproof smear against any individual leader, and that this would destroy the OWS movement.
This is why the RW think tanks have devised and have been spreading the meme that OWS needs a leader.
*THEY DESPERATELY NEED US TO HAVE A LEADER SO THAT THEY CAN KILL OFF OWS ONCE AND FOR ALL*
And this is why we are asking everyone that really cares to stop insisting that we must have a leader.
With collective leadership, this cannot happen.
Also, an individual leader can be corrupted. Ego. Pride. Sex. Greed.
This can not happen to collective leadership.
Please join us and support and participate in OWS.
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A Giant Union Is Planning to Protest the Oscars
Happy Valentines Day, old friends!
NEVER trust government. nt
By No Elephants
Shirley Temple-talented phenom and more, gone at 86
By No Elephants
Asian markets okay with recent disappointing American jobs report and Yellen's appointment.
By No Elephants
Another kind of Cold War
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Commit Random Acts Of Kindness and Senseless Beauty
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