“Non-lethal” Police Weapons

*****THIS post is in DRAFT form until this note is removed*****

“Congress shall make no law—abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble”

Often it seems that our local police are asked to enforce local ordinances, charters etc that politicians have implemented in an attempt to circumvent this very critical piece of our 1st Ammendment.

The 1st Ammendment not only guarantees our right to speak and assemble freely, it REQUIRES our governments not to pass any law that conflicts with that right.

If I want to assemble with likeminded people at noon on Monday or at 4 am on Friday, under the Constitution I am allowed to do so.

Yet, many jurisdictions have passed local laws saying that I cannot.  And then they pay their police to enforce these unconstitutional pieces of crap local ordinances.

We, the people, must tell our federal politicians that we will remove them from office if they fail to do their job and enforce our 1st Ammendment rights.

Lately, with the @OccupyWallStreet encampments having sprung up worldwide we have seen more and more police actions against protestors and hear about use of “Non-lethal” weapons.

What are nonlethal weapons?  What do they include and what kind of damage can they do when used against human beings?

***I am not an expert in police weapons, tactics or the law.  If I get something wrong here, please let me know.  I will research your issue and fix the entry.

Non-lethal weapons are used by police in many situations such as barricaded suspects, riots, protests and demonstrations and (XXX).  In these situations police have a need to either convince someone to give themselves up, cease an activity or vacate an area.

Types of Non-lethal weaponry:

Non-lethal weapons include a significant range of items including various pepper agents that have been around for a long time and some new ones.

  • mace and pepper spray

This video fits a couple of different weapons.  It occured on the campus of the University of California at Davis on November 18th.

First, you see one officer step over the seated protestors and move in front of them.  He then blatently sprays pepper spray directly into the faces of these seated protestors.  They posed no threat to the officers and offered no resistence.  I am shocked the crowd and those sprayed stayed non-violent.  This video disturbs me so…

Also, aside from the mace can, you can see officers carrying what appear to be pepper ball rifles (??)

  • tear gas spray,
  • tear gas canisters and tear gas grenades

Gas that is dispersed or spread using projectiles such as canister or grenades fired from a weapon can cause harm in a number of ways in addition to the harm from the gas itself.

Gas can also be dispersed in a “Fog” often called Pepper Fog  some local jurisdictions do carry pepper fog materials.

Cannisters and grenades can (and do) strike people and cause massive damage including soft tissue wounds, broken bones, concussions, damage to eyes, noses, mouth and genitals.

  • percussion grenades

In the police actions against Occupy Wall Street demonstrators in Oakland California most of us have heard about the injuries suffered by American Veteran Scott Olsen who was struck in the head by a tear gas canister.  While he was laying unconscious on the ground a police officer tossed a tear gas grenade right next to Olsen, scaring a gathering crowd away and possibly doing more damage.

Below are a couple of photos of Iraq Veteran, Marine Scott Olsen and a video of Olsen being first struck by the canister and then of the tear gas grenade being tossed directly toward Olsen as he lays injured on the ground.

There was a vigil held in Oakland for Olsen after this attack.  The injuries suffered by this Iraq veteran who it seems posed no real threat to the police on-site the night of the attack (from the Oakland PD, Alameda County Sheriff, Palo Alto Police Department or others) seemed to have re-energized the protestors and certainly increased the donations they collected.

  • batons
  • rubber bullets

Rubber bullets sound so harmless, and as opposed to full-metal jacketed bullets they certainly are.  They are not made to penetrate flesh although they can.  Rubber bullets can do a lot of damage to soft tissue and bones and seriously wound a person if they strike an eye, ear, nose, mouth or genitals.

The first  photo below is a rubber shotgun shell and the bullet or projectile which lives in the shell before it is fired.  Look at the fins which help with the flight of the rubber projectile increasing distance and accuracy.

In the next photo in the we see a shotgun shell used to propel a beanbag round and, in the other hand, is a rubber bullet.

The shotgun shell fires from the weapon and opens at the top allowing the actual projectile(such as a beanbag)  to separate from the shell and project further, just  as pellets in a regular shotgun shell would do.

The next two photos show actual damage to a human being who has been struck with a rubber bullet.  The first is a facial injury and the second is a chest wound.

You can see that these non-lethal weapons can do a lot of damage to a person.

  • bean bags

There are a ton of bean bags weapons out there.  Most are shotgun based and fire 12g bean bags such as this one.

A 12 gauge round that direct fires a 26 gram or 40 gram bean bag projectile. Designed for single target engagement allowing escalation of force from a close distance prior to use of lethal means. “

Such intruiging naes….the “Power Punch”.  If you felt it slam into your bbody you would definitely feel the punch and wonder if it was actually “non-lethal”.

So where do such nonlethal weapons come from?According to one source many used by the Oakland PD come from the same U.S. based arms company that supplies the Israeli Army:

The police repression on display in Oakland reminded me of tactics I witnessed the Israeli army employ against Palestinian popular struggle demonstrations in occupied West Bank villages like Nabi Saleh, Ni’lin and Bilin. So I was not surprised when I learned that the same company that supplies the Israeli army with teargas rounds and other weapons of mass suppression is selling its dangerous wares to the Oakland police. The company is Defense Technology, a Casper, Wyoming based arms firm that claims to “specialize in less lethal technology” and other “crowd management products.”

Read more of this article HERE

Note:  There is nothing wrong with police departments purchasing these weapons nor with the company manufacturing and selling them.

One article states that of the various agencies on-site during the October 25th siege of the Oakland encampment only the Alameda County Sheriff’s Department allowed their officers to use explosive tear gas canisters.

Read the Fog City Journal article at the link above.

Society will need to decide whether we want to continue to allow our police departments to use such weapons against American civilians whose crime is something like “trespassing” or “violating curfew” or even “failure to follow a police officer’s direct order”.

In my mind, these crimes do not seem significant enough to warrant such weapons being used.

Iraq War veteran Scott Olsen lay bloodied while regaining consciousness after being struck by an unknown projectile during a protest in Oakland on Tuesday. Photo by Jay Finneburgh

Below is Scott Olsen after leaving the hospital November 12th and looking much better.  Olsen was still having trouble speaking when he left the hospital and will require some ongoing therapy for a period of time.

The last item will not seem like a “weapon” to many of you or to the police.  I am talking about a badge that is hidden or covered in some way so that the public cannot identify the officer.

This usually happens in a “riot” gear setting.  The officer puts black electrical tape over the badge or sticks it in his pocket or pulls a pocket flap down over the badge.  It is usually done from a state of fear.  It may seem to us that it is from arrogance, but in truth the officer worries that an uncovered shiny badge marks him as a target.

You most often see this happen at night when a flashlight or a camera light or the headlights of a passing car make that badge just light up.

However, it is against the law for an officer to hide or cover up his identity—his badge with his name and number.

To the public that hidden badge does seem to be a weapon.  We know it is against the law and may even remind the officer.  That rarely changes the behavior.  And we wonder “if he covers his badge, what will he do to me?”  Cops understand it is intimidating even if that is not their primary reason.

The California Penal Code states that uniformed police officers must wear “a badge, nameplate, or other device which bears clearly…the identification number or name of the officer”.

Feel free to remind the police of this when they forget.”

More at the link.

“Congress shall make no law—abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble”

“Sound cannons” or  “LRAD” or “Sonic Blasters” are another “non-lethal” weapon developed for military use on the battlefield and now being turned against American citizens on U.S. soil doing nothing but protesting.

Are these protests large crowds?  Are these protests rowdy?  Are the protestors breaking the law?  Yes, sometimes.  But we are talking about protests and protestors.  If (when) foreign governments turn these weapons against their own citizens we would (and do) complain and ask them to stop.

But the products, which the makers developed as nonlethal options for military use, are prompting outcries from people on the receiving end, who call them “sound cannons.” The city of Pittsburgh is fighting an American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit claiming the piercing tone from a police blaster during the 2009 G-20 summit permanently damaged a woman’s hearing. At least one Occupy Wall Street protester says New York City police also used the punishing alert tone, although police say they have used the device only to broadcast messages.

LRAD says its products offer police something louder than a megaphone and more benign than rubber bullets and tear gas for managing crowds, defusing hostage situations and serving warrants on dangerous suspects.”  More at the link above.

The U. S. General Strike

We have a call for a U. S. General Strike.

When:     Wednesday, November 2nd

On Twitter join @USGeneralStrike

List of Endorsements of the Nov 2 General Strike, constantly updated.

More posters can be found HERE for Occupy, the Global United as well as the General Strike in case that is why you are here.  Share them, print, e-mail, fax, anything you can do to get them in the hands of more people.

Hand them out to Ten people and ask them to give posters to ten more people.

Start a General Strike  WAVE

.As of Halloween, the General Strike is growing by the minute with official Strikes and support groups in cities across the U.S. all the way to the Atlantic Ocean.

This may turn out to be the largest General Strike ever held and we will shut the city of Oakland California DOWN on November 2nd.

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To begin we have:

March Against The Police StateWear All-Black

Where:    Oakland, Oscar Grant Plaza at 14th & Broadway

When:      Saturday, October 29th

8 PM

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The call for a general strike against Oakland, California is in response to the terrible actions of the police and the city against protestors associated with the @OccupyOakland movement which is an off-shoot of the @OccupyWallStreet effort.

On Tuesday, October 25th Oakland police, backed by officers from other jurisdictions, attacked protestors in downtown starting with an effort to remove protestors from their downtown encampment that morning.

In the evening protestors worked to re-establish their camp and the police resisted.

The police actions resulted in injuries to numerous protestors including an Iraq War Marine veteran, Scott Olsen.

Olsen was struck in the head apparently by a tear gas canister.

The crowd scattered as the tear gas dispersed that night.  Olsen lay injured on the ground, unable to get up and run.

Compatriots ran back, grabbed him by the shoulders in an attempt to pull him away from further harm or arrest as they had done so many times before on that night.

This time was different, at least on video it seemed different.  One police office was caught on video throwing a 2nd tear gas grenade directly into the group of people trying to rescue Scott Olsen.

A few people realize what is about to happen and move away just as the tear gas canister explodes!!  BOOM!!! Right next to the injured Marine.

His friends and other protestors come right back to grab Olsen again and pull him away from further harm.

Olsen’s photo (below), and many others,  have been distributed across the country on mainstream & cable news channels and the internet.

 And this disturbing video has been shown across the country.  It is disturbing to watch an officer sworn to uphold the law and keep people safe, purposely try to injure people.

And, more disturbing. he does injure people: including the Marine who was already laying injured on the ground directly in the path of the  grenade this cop launches toward the protesters

Watch and see for yourself:

This video flat-out disturbs me to the core, as it should disturb you.

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October 28th Update:

@OccupyOakland

In Oakland we will have a march at 5 pm PT:

We will shut down the port and liberate Oakland

A Mass Day of Action On November 2nd

Everyone take to the streets:

No work!

No school!!

No play!!!

Mass gatherings at 14th & Broadway at 9:00 am, 12 noon, and 5:00 pm Pacific Time; ET is Noon, 3 pm and 8 pm

A Liberar Oakland

The General Strike is alive and well in YOUR city.

Don’t live in Oakland??

No work!

No school!!

No play!!! 

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A Message To Employers, etc

Who May Discipline Their Workers

For Participation In The General Strike

Agreed upon in Occupy Oakland Strike Assembly 10.29.11

The Occupy Oakland Strike Assembly vows to picket and or occupy any business or school which disciplines employees or students in ANY way for participating in the November 2nd strike and day of action.

• The Occupy Oakland Strike Assembly would like this warning to be known in the general community.
• Any worker who thinks they have been disciplined for participating in the General Strike may come to the Strike Assembly to ask for picket support against their employer.
• The Occupy Oakland Strike Assembly will keep meeting after the strike in case of delayed disciplinary measures by employers and will maintain an email list to mobilize for any measures after that. If workers cannot make the general strike committee they may email OccupyOaklandLaborSolidarity@gmail.com
• If any such disciplined workers are represented  by a union, we will call on that union to join us in picketing.

November 2 Picket support from Occupy Oakland

Any group of workers who want are picket line at their workplace on November 2nd should come to the Occupy Oakland Strike Assembly meeting at 5 in front of Oakland City Hall or email OccupyOaklandLaborSolidarity@gmail.com

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 @OccupyPhoenix just passed a note over to the folks at @OccupyOakland endorsing the General Strike and their work to end police violence in Oakland.

The people united—will never be defeated!!!

October 29th:

Oakland’s Teachers Union has UNANIMOUSLY endorsed the Oakland General Strike on Nov 2!!!

Let’s make history!

@OccupyOregon now endorses the General Strike.

Let’s make history.

And a 2nd General Strike poster:

@OccupyPasadena California supports the General Strike as more and more cities sign on!!

The Carpenters Union Local has joined in the General Strike

@OccupyOrangeCounty  @OccupyOC has joined the Gerneral Strike

@OccupySeattle joins in the November 2nd General Strike and stands in solidarity with @OccupyNashville in the 4th straight night of heavy police action

@OccupyMills College joins the General Strike team!

SEIU 1021 , the biggest union in Oakland has voted to join the General Strike

@OccupyMilwaukee supports the student walkout as part of the General Strike

October 31st:

A Happy Halloween Epic banner drop over I-580  near Oakland—STRIKE!

@OccupyHouston joins the General Strike partnership.

The October 26th General Assembly in Oakland called for the Nov 2 General Strike!!

In Oakland on Nov 2:  at 2:00pm gather together at the Intersection of Broadway and Telegraph for an “Anti-Capitalist March“.

Don’t Miss it!!!

@OccupyOakland and the City of Oakland both prepare for the General Strike.

“Anti-Wall Street demonstrators and Oakland city officials on Monday were preparing for a midweek strike by protesters that would include a possible shutdown of the Port of Oakland, the fifth busiest shipping container port in the U.S….

…According to its website, the local Service Employees International Union is encouraging members to seek time off work to stand in support of Occupy Oakland….

…The Port of Oakland was where more than 40 people were injured after police used less-lethal ammunition on crowds of anti-war protesters in 2003. Oakland officials later adopted new crowd control rules defining when and what types of less than lethal ammunition can be used.

Late Monday, Oakland city officials released a bulletin advising businesses and merchants that police will be on hand Wednesday in case demonstrations become unlawful.”
More at the link above.

Oakland Elementary School has joined in supporting the GeneralStrike.

“The staff at Bridges Academy at Melrose sent a bilingual flier home to families, inviting them to join them in Wednesday’s general strike in support of Occupy Oakland — and informing them that teachers would not be in their classrooms that day.”

I salute the staff and the children at Bridges Academy.  More at the link.

Where will you say you were on November 2nd?  On the sofa…or in the streets?  Fighting for your rights!!!

October 31st:

General Strike newspaper

PCBOAKLAND Pacific Coast Brewing will be closed on November 2nd in solidarity with @OccupyOakland and the @USGeneralStrike   U.S. General Strike

November 2nd:

A lot of action nationwide today and especialy in Oakland.

Police and protestors clash in Oakland.

About 5 pm PT Oakland protestors shut down the Oakland Port, the 5th busiest port in the U.S.A.  There was no ship movement and no materials movement iu or out of the port of Oakland.

“Police and protesters supporting the Occupy Wall Street movement have clashed downtown following a day of peaceful protests throughout Oakland.”

The marches and demonstrations in @OccupyOakland were nonviolent all day including the shutdown of the busy port.

However, after these actions things did turn violent downtown .  And, although police still deny using such devices last week in Oakland, tear gas canisters and “flash-bang” grenades were once again fired in Oakland by either the Oakland PD, Alameda Sheriff’s Department or support staff from other police or Sheriff’s departments called in by the Oakland PD to help protect the Oakland citizens.

1 am in Oakland Pacific Time on Oct. 3rd about @OccupyOakland.  Many photos at the link.

They are shared by @OccupyPhoenix  Thank you!!

The scene is best described as post-apocalyptic dystopia with a drum circle: 

from @JoshuaHol, Joshua Holland.  Thanks!

@USGeneralStrike states “The police in Oakland are shooting the homeless with rubber bullets and tear gas “

If you want to focus on one stream on Twitter about @OccupyOakland that would be my choice tonight folks.

U-Stream on Oakland raid tonight is HERE

Police are using bean bags, tear gas grenades and rubber bullets in this action as seen on the U-Stream.

They have drained their Droid-X battery and arew requesting that anyone that has Droid-X battery(s) to donate or loan—please bring them down to @OccupyOakland.  You would be much appreciated for the assist.

“Oscar Grant Plaza looks like a Warzone. Tear Gas, Flash Bangs, the typical Oakland Cocktail. Watch @OakFoSho

The @GlobalRevolution LiveStream is HERE and taken the place of the U-Stream above.

Announcements being made by police on Broadway and 15th.  Declared an “unlawful assembly”  Chemical agents will be used.

“Fear of camp raid 2nite. Raheim Brown Community Center was reclaimed by occupiers and then retaken by police with tear gas and bullets.”   from @OccupyOakland at 1:50 pm PT

“WE ARE SCOTT OLSEN.  WE ARE SCOTT OLSEN.  WE ARE SCOTT OLSEN.  WE ARE SCOTT OLSEN” 

In case you are wonderingThere are thousands of protestors at the Port of Oakland THIS minute!!

The Port of Oakland has been SHUT DOWN and will continue to be SHUT DOWN.

Police are attacking at 15th & Broadway in Oakland Califrornia RIGHT NOW:  2:05 am PDT on October 3rd.

U-Stream is about to cut out, still need a Droid X battery if you have one.

Another stream is HERE with @anonmedics

November 6th:

@OccupyOakland  Oakland the days b4 and the days after the U.S. General Strike: 

Man, how successful these people were.  The people of Oakland have had their asses kicked for years, but they just keep coming back.  And this time….they showed the world!!!

At the link you find a personal account that the writer gives to us about what he saw and experienced during those days before and after the General Strike.

What an excellent account we are provided with.  Make sure you take a few minutes to read this.

And HERE is an annonymously edited 15 minute video of different portions of the General Strike including the Occupation of the Port of Oakland.  Yes, I will say it again:  this is the Fifth busiest port in the entire U.S.A.

Thoughts About Oakland On October 25, 2011

These are just my thoughts about what happened in Oakland California on the night of October 25, 2011.

The activities stemmed from @OccupyWallStreet as @OccupyOakland grew in support of the Occupy Wall Street movement which has spread worldwide as part of the middle-class and poorer classes response to the global recession and the view that the recent economic crisis has been at least partly a result of big banks and big corporations greed.

The people can see that these large entitites have feasted while the rest of us have gone hungry.

And so the @OccupyTheWorld groups have started and they have grown in spite of various attempts by politicians and even local law enforcement to put out the fires.

But the fire cannot be extinguished in that way because at it’s root it is not criminal activity.  No matter what laws an individual country or local area has, the people have a basic “unalienable right” to freedom.

Politicians & police do not understand that major actions like last night in Oakland and in Atlanta actually strengthen a movement.  Managers think they are giving directions to line police officers that will result in “crushing” an acvtivity.  But this is not a criminal activity.

It is not a crime wave or even a street gang.

Even military action would only strengthen the movement because folks that sympathize with the protestors now decide to join them or offer other support they otherwise would not have considered.

We only have to look at the most recent activities in countries like Egypt, Tunisia, Iran….someday North Korea, Iraq, African countries and evcentually China.

What is to the politicians and some police a simple attempt to stop a group from doing something like “camping” in the park or on the Plaza becomes something much larger and on television or on the internet it looks like they are stifling freedom.  It looks like ‘the people’ who are asking for just a little bit of freedom are being hammered by a giant fist.

Which is actually exactly what is going on.  Exactly.

And so more people join and more people support…and it becomes emboldened and strengthened.  Day by day.

If you saw this video on television, on the nightly news, or on the internet what would be your response?  What about your friends or your neighbors?

Would it cause some new people to join the cause?

This photo shows an Iraq veteran injured on a street in Oakland, California on the night of October 25th:

Check out his “Veterans For Peace” T-shirt.

The group has offered support in many U.S. cities that are “Occupied” including Oakland.

So here we have a brave young man.  An American who has served us well in Iraq, seen and done things we would not understand but can appreciate.

And he returns from serving from our war in Iraq only to lay injured in an American street.  For protesting.

Listen, this is important:  he was not robbing a bank.  He was not assaulting anyone.  He was not dealing drugs to schoolchildren.

He was protesting.  This Iraq war veteran was significantly injured solely because he protested.

Below is an empty shell and an actual rubber slug shot from from a 12 gauge shotgun:

And here is the same type of shell with as rubber bullet before firing:

And I definitely recommend that you sign this petition to Mayor Jean Quan and the Oakland Police Chief and let them know that firing tear gas cannisters, rubber bullets and wooden dowels at our citizens is wrong.

The site allows you to submit your completed form.

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Why is any of this important?

The protests, the occupations, the marches, the violence, the politicians deciding to evict the protestors, the police telling the TV news people to turn their “cameras off”, the rubber bullets & tear gas cannisters?

Why is any of it important at all?

Because of thisThe report that rich people and corporations do NOT want you to see:

 

New Report Shows the inequality of income distribution in the U.S.

You have heard the term “We are the 99%” and you have heard the news reporters laugh at the idea that the Top 1% owns most of the money.

Well now there is proof that is true.  This is a  report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).

Look how dramatic this is in the graph below.

The Top 1% (really rich people) is the light blue line, this is the THEM

The other colors are US, broken down into three groups.  All together they do not equal the Top 1%.

Related articles

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Occupy Cities Other Than New York City and Wall Street

http://platform.twitter.com/widgets/hub.1326407570.html

Live updateOccupy” info HERE

Includes regions of country, cities and links including any available LiveStream

Twitter them at @OccupyInfo

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November 1st:

Check out this great video from The Young Turks:

October 3rd:

We did it. 35,000 people on the marches alone. Some stayed at the plaza. Some strikers stayed home. Beautiful pic:

And……….”a moment of tension at the Oakland Port”

Watch the vimeo vid from TurnstyleNews

From Politicus USA,  the Heritage Foundation,  advocating for the health insurance mandate in the early 1990s stated “The conservatives are masters at creating a problem, then blaming the other guy for the mess. Look at our debt, it was doubled by Ronald Reagan, fixed by Clinton, and then the Clinton surplus was squandered by the Republicans and George W Bush.”

October 4th:

@OccupyDCAction  @OccupyKStreet  @OccupyWashingtonDC 

All of those occupiers in our nations capitol!!!  Right on baby.

Sitting down and controlling the Koch Brothers!

They control six intersections in our great district.

Just occupying the SHIT outta the Convention Center and the Koch Brothers Conference and those rich ass kissing politicians that they control.

November 5th:

You have had HUGE successes this week:

  • you shut down the 5th busiest port in the United States of America (Oakland, California)
  • you shut down a full six busy city intersections in Washington DC as part of the Occupy the City Center of our nations Capitoil
  • One million people moved their money OUT of the biggest banks in the nation DESPITE the banks attempts to keep you there, charging you ten dollars to close your account, harassing you and arresting you just because you wanted to close your bank account

Congratulations to the American people for having the grit and determination to get the job done!!!

November 6th:

@OccupyOrlando had Teach-in today at their Beth Johnson Park.  It was on the 1st Ammendment.  Great huh??  I thought so.  Until I heard that 13 people were arrested.

People get arrested during a class about the 1st Ammendment.  They were out there in a chilly Florida rain and it was broadcast via Livestream.

And, of course, they got arrested for expressing their First Ammendment rights to Free Speech and Freedom of Assembly.

If I go to a class about how to make money on the stock market do I get arrested for making money?

***Call To Action***   November 17th

10 am- 11:30 am

Resist austerity. Reclaim the economy. Recreate our democracy.

New York City Schedule of events–Check Back at the link, It Will Be Updated!!!

  • Wall Street-  7:00 am: Resist austerity! SHUT DOWN WALL STREET
  •  All Five Boroughs-  2:30 pm: Reclaim our democracy!  OCCUPY THE SUBWAYS
  •  Foley square- 5 pm-: Rebuild our economy! TAKE THE SQUARE

Someone in this video says something like “It doesn’t make a difference if you only hurt their pocketbook one day.”  I say, hell yeh.  It makes a difference, but you have too do it one day after one day after one day.  Check the @OccupyDallas video above.

People arrested in @OccupyDallas are being “Held without Bail”  What???

They are being held “under investigation for attempting to start a riot.”

And the Dallas PD are refusing to issue any information about the arrests beyond that little statement.

@OccupyRiverside was raided today.  The brave brothgers & sisters who were arrested will be held overnight.  The tents and canopies that were there were removed during the raid.

BUT—new tents and canopies have been constructed AND the People’s Kitchen is back up and running!!  And soup is being served!!!

November 7th:

@OccupyAtlanta suffered a number of police actions yesterday with at least 20 people arrested.  @OccupyAtlanta’s response to the arrests is at the link.

“The arrests made over the last few days have brought national attention to the City of Atlanta and to Occupy Atlanta. There have been several attempts to silence our voice and deny our First Amendment rights. Excessive police presence and the waste of tax payer’s money shines a light on the the government’s distorted priorities and failures to act in the best interests of the people.”

Read more from the @OccupyAtlanta folks at the link.

@OccupyPhiladelphia discusses the Atlanta arrests.  Philadelpjia and all of the other cities stand with the brave people of Atlanta!!

A new ABC Poll shows that 66% of Americans want the Obama Administration to stand up to big business MORE!!!  At the link you will find the raw data plus some breakdowns showing the population that was questioned.  Pretty representative group in this survey and the results are pretty representative too.

I hope the President listens and we begin to hear and see that he and his administration are taking a stronger stance when it comes to issues such as corporate greed.

Kick their asses!!

November 9th:

And beware:

Many Credit Unions rival large banks in their size.  And if you are concerned about the pay of CEOs or bonuses for Executives, do some research before you select a CU.  high salaries on their own may not be a no-go for you, but make sure you don’t get surprised later.

In California many Executives of Credit Unions make annual salaries of more than $600,000 per year.  God knows what (or if) the taxes paid by some turn out to be.

Check at the link for California CU CEO salaries.

The March on Washington started today with a small group of occupiers walking from New York City into Washington DC.  At some 20 miles each day they should arrive about November 23rd in time for the Congressional Super Committee meeting about our nations debt ceiling.

You remember the debt ceiling?  A long long time ago (like in July 2011) the Republicans decided to hold our nation hostage because they did not want the debt ceiling raised.

And so we got right down to the final final last minute.

And then our nations credit worthiness was downgraded.

And then the price of money went up and the price of every goods and service went up, and we may never in our lifetime regain our stellar credit rating.

And because the Republicans so much want to regain the Whitehouse in 2012, they refused to increase the debt ceiling through the end of 2012, which would have  removed it from the discussions that either party has during the Presidential election cycle.

Instead, here we are beginning to talk about it again.

And I know the Occupy groups want to remain apolitical, but this is my blog.

And I say the Republicans and any Democrat who stood with them during the summer on the issue of the debt ceiling are utter assholes.  You sold my great-grandchildren, who are yet to be born, down the fucking proverbial river.

@OccupyCal @OccupyUCBerkeley Occupy University of California at Berkeley California  big things going on.

Livestream is HERE

Police raids continue with constant efforts by the group to maintain security.

Huge numbers of police around the hall plus check out this you tube video below from earlier today.  It is so scary it almost looks like a movie:

Earlier today, about 3 pm, an UC Berkeley administrator came to the GA (first of Berkeley) and told the occupiers that he was proud to let them stay “24/7″ on the campus.  But he would not allow “tents, sleeping bags or cooking” so you can stay but no cover, warmth or food.  “Thank you guests”.

Police then raided (attempted to raid?) the encampment.

The occupiers held a vote which passed by some 93% basically saying:

  • we vote “bullshit” on UC and the visiting administrator
  • we will protect the encampment to the last person
  • we will be non-violent to the end (I always had trouble with that one)

9:15 pm the police are moving in with helmets, batons and tear gas canisters.

I stand with you in Berkeley!!

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@OccupyArrests  A running total of arrests during the Occupy Movement

The @OccupyArrests Project website is HERE

Follow them at Twitter and the website

November 9 arrests:   71

Total arrests:          3,516

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November 10th:

Hours after the police beatdown inflicted at @OccupyCal in Berkeley California there are at least 600 people standing in front of Sproul Hall where the police action took place.   Take the Hall over and Sit-In.

The LIVE ABC Channel 7 helicopter view over the top of this crowd is HERE

At one point, there was a HUGE crowd on the Berkeley campus facing a smaller but significant line of police.  I am not a non-violent person, I must admit, as a student of the 50s and 60s.  All it seems to do is allow you to get your ass kicked.

But I am glad to see this new, young crowd of protestors hold onto their values even in the face of these constant police raids and beatings simply for exercising their constitutional rights to assemble and protest.

Later @californiabeat states 39 were arrested in the Berkeley demonstrations.

@Occupy_Harvard  HERE is a current pic of the encampment on the Harvard yard.

@OccupyMiani needs people to be at the encampment at Noon today (Thursday).  The police will attempt to close down the camp at that time.

With all of the Occupy activity nationwide including “Move Your Money” day, the banks have increased their foreclosure activity during October with a 7% increase over September!!.

Read at the link.

Remember back in my original post about occupied cities other than NYC & Sacramento and the big day of violence in Sacramento.  Or, maybe you read or saw it elsewhere, I had an entry where folks had “outed” a cop or two who showed up in civilian clothes at an Occup

ww land event.

It was a bit of a “gotcha” moment showing “provacatuers on youtube and suggesting that occupiers be more careful, as they should be.

Here is one of those Oakland cops talking about the video and what he thought he was doing.

Watch them and judge for yourself.

Last night after watching the interview with the outed cop, I tweeted that I could like this cop.  He could be my friend.  Or my brother.  Some people responded about how stupid I must be and how easily tricked I was.

No, not at all folks.  I don’t need to give my protestor bio here, but people know me.  Even peeps in Oakland know me.

It is what it is and I accept this guys words as honest.

@OccupySC South Carolina crowd heckles down Republican Presidential candidate Michelle Bachman.

“Occupy Wall Street protesters on Thursday disrupted a foreign policy speech by Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann in which she said she would make Iraq pay back billions of dollars the U.S. spent to liberate the country and never let Iran get its hands on a nuclear weapon.”

She is such an ass.

This article on Oakland asks “Why Is The Oakland PD Hiding The Truth…?”.  it seems to be a very childish question and assumes that there is a “truth” hidden somewhere.  Reality is probably much more complex.

But it is as if Fox News or some other news show asked “Why Is The Occupy Wall Street or Occupy Oakland Movement Hiding The Truth…?”  I would have to say, Oh really????

November 11th:

Happy Veteran’s Day!!

And to all of our brave U.S. Veteran’s—I cherish your service.

For those overseas today—I pray for your safe and quick return.

 @OccupyOakland  and @northoaklandnow  protestors are taking turns addressing the policement who are guarding the doors. The marchers are heading back  to Frank Ogawa Plaza.

the @OccupyOakland folks received notice from the city of Oakland California masquerading as a “Notice of Violations and Order to Cease Violations“.

I spent most of my working life in local government.  I understand such notices. It then depends on who sent the notice, who can back their play.  Obviously, someone in the City wants to enforce the code that promted them to produce the notice.

The question is does the City (May and Council) have the Cojones to raid the camp and be on television again.

And how many conversations have/will they have with our Governor, a previous Mayor of the great City of Oakland.  A man who has lived his entire political life with a politicians desire to avoid negative ink.

The notice is at the link above, take a look.

And watch your backs people.

A few minutes later it appears the Police Department issued the notice.  The police department also confirmed the man injured near the Occupy camp has, unfortunately, died.

Today seems to be Oakland day:  The City of Oakland Police Union calls for an end to the Occupy movement, saying the movement has “achieved it’s aims”.  The article is HERE

Really?  How many bankers are in prison for stealing our money?  How many mortgage brokers are paying people back for their fake paper resulting in so many Americans forfeiting their property?

Let’s see, there was one police officer ‘outed’ for also being undercover in an Occupy march.  And then he made a video where he said that he is both a cop AND a member of the 99%.  That is the truest statement I have heard for months.  Of course, the question is about tone—sincerity.

Anyway, I do not speak for @OccupyOakland, but it does not seem to me their aims have been met.

Earlier in the Occupation protestors were hit by a vehicle.  According to ABC Channel 7 the accident report does not list the name of the driver or the name of witnesses.  Protestors, of course, are pushing for the arrest of the driver who struck people.  There is actually a viceo at the link.

The two protesters struck by a car during the Occupy Oakland strike nine days ago now have lawyers. They want to know why police haven’t arrested the driver of the car for attempted murder.  

  Attempted murder is a serious charge, but the protesters and their lawyers believe this was a serious crime.”

Also, an Oakland Police Department vehicle struck a pedestrian when responding to a shooting last night which was near the Plaza.  The pedestrian was not seriously injured.

Note:  According to @californiabeat the police claim the suspect in this shooting had been staying in the Frank Ogawa Plaza encampment.

Here is a nice article detailing the arrests of journalists who have been arrested and/or assaulted while covering various Occupy events, marches, occupations etc.

As the Occupy movement has spread beyond Wall Street, at least seven U.S. journalists have been detained and one television crew attacked by U.S. law enforcement officers during turbulent encounters between police and protesters. Occupy demonstrators have attacked journalists in two other instances, including an assault this week in Oakland, Calif., that left a cameraman with a concussion.”

The arrests and assaults have taken place from the Oakland/San Francisco Bay area to New york, south to Tennessee and north to Wisconsin.  In other words…nearly everywhere.

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@OccupyYourLawn Someone has a great idea—  put a tent on your front lawn and start seeing hundreds and thousands and tens of thousands of our own front lawns….Occupied!!! 

Thank you Daily Kos, it’s excellent.  What would Mayors and Police Departments and City Councils and Bureaucrats do?  Start raiding my own front lawn?

Hell, in some cities they probably would, but it’s not like they can say there is a curfew.  Or the property owner did not give you permission?

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This study says that Most Jurisdictions Working Well With Occupy Protestors:

Just like peeps complain that we only hear the “bad news” it seems that only Occupy protestors who bump up against their local police or politicians land in the paper or on the news.  But it appears they are really not in the majority and most localities actually form good working relationships with their “occupied” movement.

A new ICMA survey finds that the vast majority of local governments have developed successful, collaborative relationships with local Occupy movement protestors and have found the protests in their jurisdiction manageable, with relatively few reports of disruption or turmoil.

The actual survey is HERE  and Occupy populations may be well served providing copies of the survey results and suggestions to their local City Councils/County Boards of Supervisors, Mayors & Police Chiefs, City Managers, News Agencies, etc and their members.

November 12th:

Have you been part of the @OccupyOakland movement, attended a march or sent them food or a blanket?  If so you can share your stories, photos or?? at http://iamoccupyoakland.tumblr.com/submit

Marine Veteran and Occupier  Scott Olsen (Happy Veteran’sDay Scott!) who was assaulted by police during the large Oakland skirmish, is out of the hospital but still having probs speaking. Wish him well @OccupyOakland and read the Reuters article at the link above.

Food warfare?  I thought this was class warfare??

Great article in the Occupy Los Angeles Blog explaining the “Bureaucratic Diversity of Tactics” when it comes to food being provided at the encampment.

Even when that food is created and served by professionals.  The County Health Department seems obsessed with food at the Occupation.  Somewhat understandable:  It is Los Angeles, lots of media attention and the Health Department does have a role.  But it seems to have goner overboard, check out the article at the link above.

Chef E, who works as both a private chef for celebrities and for a catering company that provides craft services for major movies and television shows, put it this way: “Who’s mad you guys?” Under the latest restriction, the OLA food tent cannot serve any unwrapped hot or cold food that was not prepared in a certified kitchen, though it can continue to distribute commercially prepackaged food.”

@OccupyDenver has had rumors about police actions all day long and now (5:30 pm MT) it seems the encampment is being raided.  No video yet.

75 Denver Police Department officers pushed their way thru the Civic Center park with tear gas and structures are being torn down.

Denver Livestream is HERE  No picture just sound right now.

One Tweeter has said Denver Police officers have “removed their badge numbers”.  Not sure what he is saying, badge numbers covered up or badges removed?

At 5:56 pm MT bullhorn telling people they are subject to arrest if they are in the city street.

Cops are saying “The citizens gave us the order” an occupier said “We are the citizens”.  And a few obscenities which the cop nearly arrested him for.

One officer is loudly refusing to give or show his badge and number.  And his partner says “you have mine, that is all you need.”

Really?  As if that is legal???

U-Stream is HERE

@OccupySLC Salt Lake City, Utah is being raided NOW by police with bulldozers ready to destroy the encampment after the arrests are completed.  At least eight  arrests at this point.

Local Fox news showing the Pioneer Park actions in Salt Lake City HERE

After the City announced a “compromise” BOOM a large police presence hit the camp.

“contact the mayor of Salt Lake City Ralph Becker tell him to uphold the 1st amendment mayor@slcgov.com 801-535-7976 “

This is a rough Saturday across the middle of the U.S.A.

Earlier today @OccupyStL suffered another police action.

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November 13th:

Everyday is Veterans Day

We must never forget.  We must always cherish.

You and I might see a Veteran like Shorty on the streets of Orange County or another Main Street in America and walk by, never expecting that the man we just passed is a Medal of Honor winner.

There are only some 85 members of the Congressional Medal of Honor Society awardees still living.

There are so few, but there are so many men and women who fought and served with honor, just as Shorty did.

Read his story and watch the video and say even just a silent…..

….. “Thank you“.

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@OccupyPortland erupts again as City leaders saw smaller crowds and felt they would have less resistance.  They believe they were boxed in a corner by protestors.  That they had publicly said they were coming in, they had to delay because the crowds were too large and too “unruly” overnight, and now was the time.

My question is why only some jurisdictions attack the encampment in their city?  And most, according to the study above, do not attack?

This is not the first day @OccupyPortland has been threatened with order to leave their camp.  Nor will this be the last day.

The Livestream continues at 2:30 pm PT.

The photo below is Veterans Day in Portland Oregon, the article at the above link covers activities on both sides of the protest through this morning:

There are Police Departments across the country that will have to take this opportunity to rid themselves of a few folks who just should not be serving the public.

Check the videos of officers in Berkeley and Oakland California (two of my favorite cities, both with a long history of difficult relationships with some police officers.  Why watch?  Why care?

Berkeley officer actually says that “Minorities should not complain about the tuition hikes because they do not pay
anything to the university.”

His view is that non-whites just live off of grants and aid programs.  Welfare for college students??

The Oakland officer in the second video explains why baton blows are “non-violent.”  The department may train their officers that way, and they would be right as far as gun vs baton, but ask the man or the woman on the other end of that baton what they believe.

Watch the video, complain to the Mayor and the Chief of Police in these cities.  Ask your local TV station news director why they are not showing these videos on your local news.  Tell your Mayor and Police Chief that you do not want your officers to carry these views.

4:15 pm PT, the people of Portland are standing strong, but the City seems ready and determined to move in soon.  Theymay wait until dark, some cities want the cover of darkness and they want to miss the 5 o’clock news.  We will see how Portland handles it today very soon.

@OccupyRedding  California  KGW livestream  of Portland.

At 4:42 PT, the KGW station lets their viewers know they will “cut away for the football game” in a few minutes (???).  Priorities I guess.

It does look like the police are waiting for dark before they move in and start arresting protestors as the Occupiers continue to discuss next steps.

Occupiers @OccupyChapelHill North Carolina stormed a building occupied by protestors.  The difference in this and so many other assaults?

The police were armed with assault rifles during this event and arrests.  Take a look at the weapons these officers are wielding:

This looks like a military action from the weapons and tactics these officers are using, but remember:  this is a municipal police force, not the U.S. Army!!

“…the 10,000 square foot building, the former University Chrysler-Plymouth dealership at 419 W. Franklin St., on Saturday afternoon. Banners reading “Occupy Everything” and “Capitalism left this building for dead, we brought it back to life” were displayed in the windows and roof.”  More at the link above.

@OccupyOakland is holding an “Occupacolypse” after their GA tonight.  Party like there’s no tomorrow  :-)

Ain’t no party like a West Coast party!!  DJs, music and friends.  LiveStream a party peeps.  ‘Nuff of livestreaming cops and crap.

Gee, what a surprise….sounds like ( from @BootsRiley)  the City of Oakland County of Alameda  State of California U.S. of A now plans to raid the @OccupyOakland camp tonight.

So party down like you are representing the West Coast people!   cuz…

there just ain’t no Occupation like a West Coast Occupation!

and “if cops raid the camp, there will be a reconvergence at 4pm at the main branch of the oakland public library.”

In the meantime, party down.

TIME Magazine Person of the Year for 2011:  Looks like the winner will be….drum roll please…the 99%.  Check it out at the link and good job TIME.  What TIME is it??  It’s the 99% TIME!!

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Not to drag you peeps back to my “protest” time:  but we need marches with 150,000 people like in the Student Strike of 1970 (google it) in San Francisco and another 100,000 in New York all in ONE day.  We need dramatic involvement, more people with passion.

I love you guys for stepping forward and getting arrested.  It is hard and some of you step up time after time.  I love those who many the trenches and can’t afford an arrest.  But we need thousands of people arrested in one day, not 50 or 10.

The biggest impact was 700 on the Brooklyn Bridge.  The public screamed when they saw that.  Those brothers & sisters made a statement!!

How do we do that? How do we get a march with so many people you cannot fit the front and the bag of the line into a frame of the camera.  Then the TV asswipes will pay attention.  Then the politicians will begin to back our play.

We have a beautiful march from NYC to Washington DC with what, 50 people??  google the MLK March on Washington.  how many peep, 100,000 or something?  It was fucking HUGE.  It scared the hell out of the politicians to see so many black people all in one place.  Plus there were whites and Natives and now we would have everybody.  How do we get those BIG numbers?

In the 1970s it took major police beatings on TV.  Fire hoses, dogs, church bombings.  ugly stuff.

In 1970 it too the killing of students at Kent State and Jackson State Universities.  Ugly for sure when the National Guard had orders to shoot students to kill.

I hope it doesn’t take that now.  We have issues the public supports.  They know we are right.  How do we mobilize big numbers?

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@OccupyAlbany in New York  had 25 protestors arrested for “tresspassing” yesterday but the District Attorney has decided NOT to prosecute them.

The charges against those taken out of Lafayette Park and arrested by State  Police will be dismissed when the activists show up for their appearance  tickets in Albany City Court on Nov. 21 and 22, Cecilia  Logue, a spokeswoman for the district attorney’s office, told the Times  Union Sunday.

The decision holds in line with Albany County District Attorney David  Soares‘ assertion soon after the protest began 24 days ago that as long as  the demonstrators remain peaceful, they will not be prosecuted. “

Read more atthe link above.

@OccupyTulsa Oklahoma is facing eviction now.  Livestream is here

Sounds like another big raid of the @OccupyOakland encampment again.  They are asking folks to get to the Frank Ogawa Plaza by 2 or 3 am PT at the latest to defend the camp once AGAIN!

Below is “The Wall” at 14th & Broadway in Oakland California:

Below is an email sent to parents of students in a school near the Plaza and posted on a number of Oakland related websites:

A highly coordinated law enforcement raid to clear out OO is planned to take place Monday morning early. Significant public safety mutual aid is being called in from neighboring jurisdictions. The goal is to permanently clear out the OO encampment of illegal activities. Expect to see overwhelming use of force by police directed to occupiers who refuse to comply.

Peaceful protesters are advised by police to stand down until the situation stabilizes. The general public is advised to stay away from the area during the action to avoid potential personal injury from incidental contact with conflicts.”

The City is already bracing for the backlash that they know will come after any strong effort to attack the protestors in Oakland again.

The Oakland Police Department is planning an enormous operation to evict hundreds of Occupy Oakland protesters from their encampment near City Hall early Monday morning, according to police and city offcials with direct knowledge of the plans.”

Read more at the link above.

This does not sound good so stay safe and watch your brothers & sisters.

November 14th:

Drudge Reports states @OccupyOakland under sieze by police once again.  Arrests made, encampment being dismantled by police.

LiveStream here  the City says they are “just enforcing a warning” that they issued.

For people in Oakland if you need help you can contact the national lawyers guild (415) 285-1011

12 or 13 different police agencies have systematicly locked down Oakland one intersection at a time, locking down the Plaza.  Protestors have been primarily at 14th & Broadway while police dismantled the camp.

Note RUMOR:  Mayor Jean Quan’s legal assistant, Dan Siegel,  has resigned over this “tragically unnecessary” police action.

Police have deemed the Plaza a “crime scene”.

@OccupyPhiladelphia reminds us that Oakland is “not afraid” of their tents being taken away.  Oakland is still Occupied territory.

@OccupyDenver:  DABC found out that the man hit by the police motorcycle was also charged with assault after being hospitalized.

@OccupyEureka    @OccupyHumboldt in Northern California reports that So far we have three Marines and two sailors heading to eureka tonight. We don’t call it resisting arrest when police hit unarmed protestors.

November 15th:

@OccupyLA  Los  Angeles stands in solidarity with our brothers & sisters in NYC.

Zuccotti Park/Liberty Plaza 3 am cleanup:

@OccupyToronto has received eviction notices and is on high “red alert”.

The Ottawa Citizen newspaper states that Totonto has received a “reprieve” and that @OccupyCalgary is tick-tocking toward a deadline.

It is not just US protestors that are facing tough bureaucratic decisions.

” A Toronto judge has postponed the eviction of Occupy Toronto protesters while  he rules on constitutional issues raised by applicants for an injunction against  city bylaw officers…

…A meeting by protesters to discuss how to respond to the city’s move to evict  them degenerated into a chaotic shouting match Tuesday, with protesters  disagreeing on whether their campsite should be dismantled.

Some members suggested disassembling and moving tents to another location,  while others demanded that the group stand firm in St. James Park.

In the end, occupiers decided not only to stay put, but to invite more  supporters to come down and help them “defend” the camp from possible police  intervention.”

Read more about Toronto and Calgary and Canada standing tall, at the above link.

The ACLU and the NLG (National Lawyers Guild) have filed suit to protect the rights of people in the @OccupyBoston encampment at Dewey Square.

The ACLU of Massachusetts and the National Lawyers Guild, together with cooperating attorney Howard Cooper from the law firm Todd & Weld, have filed suit to preemptively prevent the kind of police raid that we’ve witnessed in Portland, OR, Oakland, CA, and New York City this week from happening at Occupy Boston in Dewey Square….

I…n light of the news that Mayors from 18 cities spoke on a conference call last week about destroying the encampments, the organizations are taking the position that a preemptive action is necessary in order to protect the peaceful assembly at Dewey. The Mayor of Boston, Thomas Menino, has not stated publicly whether or not he was on that conference call. But the ACLUm isn’t waiting to find out the hard way.”

Read more on this suit at the link above.

I appreciate the ACLUm and the NLG working together on this preemptive lawsuit, but last week I wrote here that it seemed as if there was coordination between cities on how to handle the occupations, and here we have verification that  there was a conference call between 18 Mayors across the country where the Mayors spoke about  a decision to “destroy the encampments“.

I can understand localities and local governments sharing information and even strategies about what is occuring in their city or county.  What scares the hell out of me is that it seems the Mayors from these unknown cities made a group decision to destroy encampments, and now have moved ahead to do so and the public did not know that this conference call of coordination occured.

And Mayors, like the Mayor of Boston, won’t even answer the simple question “Were you on the conference call” when they are asked.

I sincertely hope, that as this situation moves foward, ordinary citizens such as you and I, with the help of the ACLU, NLG and concerned private lawyers continue to dig up information about what seems to be a

November 17th:

Watching CNN, it seems alsmost as if reporters and announcers are completely disconnected from this story.

The police, however, are not.

They know that today is the Day of Action across the country.

Some 60-70 arrests and the Day gets started in NYC.  Some police officers were removed from the scene when an “unknown liquid” was thrown “onto the ground”.

The effort two days ago to remove protestors and file “rules” that people,citizens, can stay in the park but not in tents or sleeping bags etc etc seems to have been given birth during a conference call between Mayors in 18 cities with some level of coordinated response to “Occupied” movements across the country.

The ACLU in Massachussets and the National Lawyers Guild have information about this and hav e filed suit.

November 17th:

Don’t believe the media hype trying to sell you on the idea that the protestors are bad people doing bad things–living in their own feces and crap like that repeated on your TV over & over.

November 17th was an Historic Day of Action Nationwide

check this article out

On November 17th, during this Call to Action, among the arrested are:

Retired Philadelphia Police Captain Ray Lewis

City Council Member Melissa Mark Viverito

City Council Member Jumaane Williams

Workers United International Vice President Wilfredo Larancuent

SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry

SEIU 1199 President George Gresham

CWA Vice President Chris Shelton

CWA Vice President , Fr. Luis Barrios of the Interreligious Foundation for Community Organization-IFCO

City Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez, who has been supportive of the Occupy movement, was among those arrested outside of the park. Police Commission(er) Ray Kelly said Rodriguez was trying to get through police lines to reach the protesters.

All the cops are just workers for the one percent, and they don’t even realize they’re being exploited,” retired Police Captain Ray Lewis said. “As soon as I’m let out of jail, I’ll be right back here and they’ll have to arrest me again.”

On this Day of Action, while the Brooklyn Bridge is an Occupied in NYC and some 276 people have been arrested in New York by t pm PT:

Earlier today a Restraining Order was filed in San Diego by the National Lawyers Guild (NLG) against both the City and the San Diego Police Department.  The NLG has said:

The SDPD are currently arbitrarily telling people who walk through the Civic Center that if they set down anything—their purse, their bag, a chair, or in one case even a tomato plant—, they will be arrested,” said attorney Bryan Pease.

The First Amendment guarantees the right to free speech and the right to peacefully assemble—municipal code section 54.010 and how it is being enforced by the SDPD is unconstitutional… Even if the court does not grant the TRO because they want to allow the city time to prep their arguments, this is a text book case of unconstitutional enforcement of a municipal code and I believe we will be successful at the preliminary injunction hearing.”

More at the link.

The photo below is from a protest in @OccupySeattle today:

November 18th:

@OccupyUCLA Univeristy of California at Los Angeles  14 Occupiers were arrested during protests on campus.  25 tents were raided on Wilson Plaza at 5:15 am today.

Many protestors left the scene as the arrests began.  The arrests were completed by 6 am.

“Shame on You Shame on You” one of my Alma Maters @OccupyUCD University of California at Davis the video below shows Brave police officers who pepper spray seated protestors.  While the protestors remain seated on the ground, offer no resistance and pose no threat to the officers…one officer steps over them and sprays the pepperspray directly into the faces andf eyes of those seated protestors.

I cannot believe how blatant this is and I hope this officer AND his superiors get fired and sued.  This is assault plain and simple.

The internet has been awash with salary details for a UCD Lt. said to be the police officer in the above video.  I am not publishing it here because I do not see his salary as important to his actions in the video and I think discussion about his alary just muddy the water as far as the real issue.

This LINK takes you to an Open Letter to Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi who ordered the police in the above video to clear the campus quad of these peaceful students.

The letter, from Assistant Professor Nathan Brown calls for the chancellors resignation.

The Chancellor is responsible for the actions of these police officers who were carrying out her instructions and must resign her post.

I support Professor Brown and stand with these students who have been so wronged by the University, the Davis Police/University Police, City of Davis, University of California system and Chancellor Katehi.

When students covered their eyes with their clothing, police forced open their mouths and pepper-sprayed down their throats. Several of these students were hospitalized. Others are seriously injured. One of them, forty-five minutes after being pepper-sprayed down his throat, was still coughing up blood.”

@OccupyOakland Yet another Iraq veteran attacked by the police in Oakland.

The veteran in this video, beaten savagely by police is till hospitalized with a damaged spleen.

Protester and three-tour American veteran Kayvan Sabehgi was beaten, injured and arrested in Oakland during the General Strike on November 14th.

“Unjustifiable force” as Olberman says.  Watch this (yet another) disturbing video.

Why do the police in Oakland (not the same as the Oakland Police as so many different agencies re “protecting” Oakland) make choices to behave so badly on camera?

November 18th:

@OccupySF San Francisco was raided by police around noon PT today.

10 press cameramen attacked or  shot at with rubber bullets. At least 2 arrested. “

If you read this statement today your first thought might be that they were covering an Occupy protest in the U.S.A.

These reporters were attacked and arrested while covering protests in Tahrir Square in Egypt.

First:  The fact that similar circumstances are happening in our own country and a country in the Middle East that we may not think has the same level of freedoms that we do should cause each of us to pause.

Second:  The tear gas and the rubber bullets used on the protestors in Tahrir Square were supplied to the Egyptian military by the same U.S. firm that supplies the same “non-lethal” weaponry to the U.S. military and to many local U.S. police departments.

The weapons used:  the gas, the guns, the bullets, may be supplied by “…Defense Technology, a Casper, Wyoming based arms firm that claims to “specialize in less lethal technology” and other “crowd management products.”   This company supplies the same weaponry to the Israeli Defense Forces.

Today I found this statement and the photo with an attachment via Twitter.

After 2 months of reading articles and seeing pictures of police brutality against peaceful (and non-peaceful), I am fed up.  I have decided to go to the United Nation’s website and e-mail them a plea to intervene with the intolerable brutality that the US is allowing to happen to its own citizens.

This picture is what really sent me over the edge. (Thanks to @diplomatsun for posting it).http://twitpic.com/7g0icy

Whether this will work or not, I do not know.  But if enough of us send these pleas, the United Nations may feel obligated to do something.  The US and UN can interfere with countries such as Egypt and Lybia, but the UN turns a blind eye to the current atrocities in the US.”

http://www.un.org/en/contactus/

You can read information about non-lethal weapons, their use in the Occupy protests and exportation as well as my thoughts about the weaponry HERE

According to the Drudge Report found in the New York Times, the U.S. Census was shocked to find out how many “near poor” households exist in America.

America’s “near poor” are increasingly older, suburban and struggling.

They drive cars, but seldom new ones. They earn paychecks, but not big ones. Many own homes. Most pay taxes. Half are married, and nearly half live in the suburbs. None are poor, but many describe themselves as barely scraping by…. When the Census Bureau this month released a new measure of poverty, meant to better count disposable income, it began altering the portrait of national need. Perhaps the most startling differences between the old measure and the new involves data the government has not yet published, showing 51 million people with incomes less than 50 percent above the poverty line. That number of Americans is 76 percent higher than the official account, published in September. All told, that places 100 million people — one in three Americans — either in poverty or in the fretful zone just above it.”

More at the link above.

November 20th:

The day of the UC Davis

The first video shows one of the peppersprayed students from UC Davis explaining what they will do.  Basically, they will sit in silence as the chancellor is led along, walking past the students to her car.

This video shows the UCD Chancellor walking past 1,000 silent students sitting on the ground, as were the students who wer pepper sprayed.

It must have been so hard to walk past these silent kids.

What a great job by the @OccupyUCD and the students of the university!!

Shamer on you Chancellor, shame on you.

video-uc-davis-chancellor-kotehi-walks-to-her-car-1000-students-stand-aside-in-silent-protest-pepper-sprayed-student-leads-peaceful-shaming

We live just some 15-20 minutes by Interstate 80 from the City of Davis.  I have taken undergraduate classes there from the time I was still in High School and they had us enrolled in Saturday classes, thru the 70s and on until 2006 when  I took a certificate course in Leadership.

I have always felt like I was a part of the school.Now, I feel I am a part of the students, but not of the school.  What happened to thoe Leadership lessons I learned?  They are not on display today.

Read this article from our local newspaper in Sacramento, about the school, the students & chancellor, what happened just three days ago, the video of the pepperspraying of the students and the Chancellors poor response to the demands for her resignation.

Al Jazeera reports that two UCD officers involved in the pepper-spraying have been placed on Leave while the 30 day Task Force will get under way.

The identities of the two officers were not revealed, but the campus police chief told the Associated Press news agency that one was a veteran of the school’s police force, while the other was “fairly” new to the department.

“We really wanted to be diligent in our research, and during our viewing of multiple videos we discovered the second officer,” said Annette Spicuzza, the police chief.”

November 22nd:

President Obama got met with a mic check during his speech today.  The President was also handed a note which read:

Mr. President:

Over 4000 peaceful protesters have been arrested. While banksters continue to destroy the economy with impunity. You must stop the assault on our 1st ammendment rights. Your silence sends a message that police brutality is acceptable. Banks got bailed out. We got sold out

Read more about Day 66 of the Occupation here.

November 24th:

I am not sure exactly what is going on in this video, I cannot determine what sets these cops off about some of the folks that get taken down.

It is titled the “Potty Wars” and happened in @OccupyOakland California during a Thanksgiving dinner, check it out:

An interview of an Egyptian protestor, such great information about the brave fighters in Egypt.  Her information gsave many of us a heads-up about what is now occuring in Egypt.  Watch  it:

November 25th:

In NYC there are thousands of folks camped out in front of Macys on 34th Street wrapped up in blankets.  Happy Black Friday!!!

In San Francisco @OccupySF successfully shut down the Apple store.  “If you want out we will let you out, but no one else is allowed to come in.”  Most excellent!!

The San Francisco LiveStream  from @piunkboyinsf

Excellent day in San Francisco as folks disrupted corporate shopping today educating shoppers but there have been tear gas incidents and may be more as the occupiers continue their Black Friday struggle.

Blockade of intersections near one of the main San Francisco shopping areas, Union Square which has shops like Macys, Neiman Marcus etc….the big boys!!

It was a Union Square face off with riot police.

It’s not about preventing people from shopping.  It’s about educating people to shop locally.  Buy from the smaller mom & pop stores in your city and avoid the corporate giants like Wal-Mart this year.

November 27th:

@OccupyPhilly Philadelphia is under threat of eviction tonight.  LiveStream is here.

@OccupyLA Los Angeles is under threat of eviction tonight and needs people to swarm down to downtown NOW.  If thousands show up the police will NOT ber able to act.  LiveStreaming is here

@OccupyTampa  Tampa Basy Florida police are certainly ready for any contingency in case their citizens decide to protest.  They will use their newest toy:

Meanwhile, a Florida Federal District Judge in Fort Meyers, rules that the people can occupy under their 1st Ammendment Rights as long as “they don’t cause trouble”.

“…last week. “The court finds that in the context of this case the tenting and sleeping in the park as described by plaintiffs’ counsel is symbolic conduct which is protected by the First Amendment,” (U.S. District Judge John) Steele wrote. “The conduct of tenting and sleeping in the park 24 hours a day to simulate an ‘occupation’ is intended to be communicative and in context is reasonably understood by the viewer to be communicative. This expressive conduct relates to matters of public concern because it can be fairly considered as relating to matters of political, social, or other concern to the community and is a subject of general interest and of value and concern to the public.”

So these protestors had done everything possible to comply with the city’s “anti-casmping” ordinance by “rotating” demonstrators so that those in the park this morning are not the same folks as those in the park tonight.

Read more about the ruling HERE

At least Fort Meyers didn’t borrow the tank from Tampa!!

November 28th:

The crowds have been building in downtown Los Angeles all night long and now it seems the police have (once again) decided toi tske action.

Here is the LiveStream @OccupyLA  with significant audio problems.  @punkboyinsf is usually prettty professional so I am hoping the problem can/will get repaired soon.

November 29th:

@OccupyOKC Oklahoma City Oklahoma is facing eviction tonight.  LiveStream is here

Oklahoma City officials say they have decided that the protestors are no mlonger allowed to stay in Kerr Park, and the city has declined to accept an additional payment for permits allowing protestors to stay overnight in the park

The group has been allowed to stay in the park overnight for the past two  months, and Oklahoma City so far has avoided violence and confrontations between  police and protesters that have occurred in some other cities including Tulsa.

Police  Capt. Dexter Nelson said the group had been getting a permit that costs $55  a day.

“The permit will not be renewed this time…”

@OccupyOlympia Washington is being evicted from the capitol grounds with arrests occuring now (8 pm PT).  LiveStream is here.

November 30th:

UC Davis professors & staff meet, agree on the need to reduce the massive tuition hikes but not on policing and violence.

UC Regents meanwhile, approve pay raises for several executives.

The California State University Board cancels their meeting (a different group than the University of California Regents)

Two hundred were arrested at @OccupyLA Los Angeles, while

more than fifty were arrested at  @OccupyPhilly Philadelphia

You can read an article coverring both cities at this link.

Busy day in California as the @OccupySF San Francisco group rejects attempts and the city’s ultimatum, to move them.

“The decision came at a general assembly meeting held by the group on Tuesday  night. The city earlier in the day gave protesters an ultimatum to move their  encampment in the financial district to an empty lot in the Mission district by  Thursday or risk a raid.

Protesters against moving said the camp’s visibility at Justin Herman Plaza  was a powerful asset and being forced to move would violate their freedom to  assemble. ”  

Read more at link above.

December 9th:

The Wild Women shut down the San Francisco Bank of America!

A group calling themselves ‘Wild Old Women’ protest outside the Bank of America Bernal Heights branch in San Francisco, January 5, 2012. (CBS)

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – It was a slow-moving Occupy Wall Street protest, but it was an effective one. A dozen senior citizens calling themselves “the wild old women” succeeded in closing a Bank of America branch in Bernal Heights Thursday.

The women, aged 69 to 82, who live at the senior home up Mission street from the Bernal Heights Bank of America branch, decided to hold their own protest by doing what they called a “run on the bank.”

More at the link above.

January 22, 2012

In more than 100 U.S. cities the Occupy the Courts protestors asked that the Citizens United decisionby the Supreme court  be reversed.  Citizens United has allowed unregulated dollars into our voting and political efforts hidden from public view and scrutiny.  Dr Cornel West joiuned the protest in @OccupyGainesville:

January 29th:

Quite a scene in the @OccupyOakland efforts last night ending with 300+ arrests in what appeared to be a very peaceful crowd.  Maybe off screen from the Live stream some peeps threw bottles (that was the charge), dunno…

The cops corraled everyone and the arrests went down until everyone possible was in jail.

Tear gas is illegal in Oakland did you know that?  Maybe that is the positive to come out of this whole thing.  There are hostage incidents which may call for a tool like gas, but on a public street against Americans who’s primary law breaking is to protest?  Oh, wait, you mean protesting is NOT against the law??

Then why have some thousands of people been arrested WORLDWIDE in these Occupy movements?

An exasperated Mayor Jean Quan, who faced heavy criticism for the police action last fall, called on the Occupy movement to “stop using Oakland as its playground.”

Oh!!  That’s their crime!!!  Thank you Mayor.

Further, said Quan, the Occupiers “burned flags” and they “broke an art object created by children”.  What?  No respect for flags and children?  They are so bad!  So did 300+ people do that?  Or ere there a couple of people who should have been arrested and the rest were trying to express their displeasure with things?

January 30th:

I am still wondering why the good people of Oakland have not ousted Mayor Quan.  Even if you want the Occupiers to go away and don’t agree with anything they are trying to accomplish, the Mayor has shown herself to be unable to manage her city.

And with this weekends protests she is now asking for the power to ban some Americans from Oakland.

She actually believes a Mayor should have the right to tell people they are not allowed to come to her city.  OK, so ban murderers.  Ban child molesters.  Ban spouse abusers.  Ban city managers who misappropriate funds.  But ban a protestor?

Excellent video of the January 28th Oakland protest and over-reaction by OPD.

Oakland Mayor Jean Quan’s e-mails leading up to her first raid of the @OccupyOakland protests.  Quan’s debacle #1 (she has had others since then and apparently is intent on having more).

January 31st:

Sign the Call For Mass Action against suppression of the Occupy Movement.

AP advises that “A federal judge in California has ruled that an Oakland police officer who covered his nameplate during a November Occupy protest seriously violated court-approved conduct standards for the city’s police department.”

If you have ever watched any of the LiveStream feeds from Oakland or many other Occupied cities, you have seen Police Officers with their badge numbers and/or names covered with tape or their badges turned backwards, or missing from their uniform completely (in a pocket maybe?).

Perhaps the OPD understands that the Feds have (once again, as in the 60s) put the department on formal notice about their illegal behavior.

Unfortunately this is one officer and I have seen hundreds on internet feeds and in photographs with their badges covered or missing.

U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson issued the ruling against officer John Hargraves and Oakland police Lt. Clifford Wong. Wong was accused of failing to report Hargraves’ actions to the department’s internal affairs unit.”

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the Judge in this case has not yet decided whether to hold the two officers in contempt.

“…U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson said Hargraves and Wong had engaged in  “the most serious level of misconduct” classified by a 2003 court  settlement.

In that settlement, Oakland paid $10.5 million to resolve claims by more than  100 plaintiffs who accused a group of veteran officers, known as the Riders, of  beating them and planting drugs. The agreement also required the Police  Department to make structural improvements and authorized Henderson to hold  officers in contempt of court, with possible fines or jail time, for serious  misconduct.”

This report says that @OccupyOakland protestors arrested January 28th and held in the Santa Rita jail have been subjected to a number of abuses such as denial of medications, beatings with batons, verbal abuse and more.  It sounds like some pretty normal complaints and I am sure that for many of the arrestees this is their first jail experience.

Daily Kos quotes an anonymous source who reports that “prisoners from the Oakland Commune were being denied medications (some had seizures) while the guards said they didnt care if they died. Some people were brutally beaten. The put tear gas in the vents of my cell twice.”

February 2nd:

With backing of NFL players, groups are planning an “Occupy the Super Bowl” protest for this Sunday’s game.

In the days since more than 10,000 protesters marched through downtown Indianapolis, union officials and other organizers have grappled with how, and if, they should make their voices heard during Super Bowl festivities. Daniels has warned opponents of the new law that disrupting the Super Bowl would give the state a “black eye.” Nevertheless, with the National Football League’s Players Association officially opposing the law, labor leaders and organizers affiliated with local Occupy groups have vowed to press on…According to a UNITE release, DeMaurice Smith, the executive director of the NFL Players Association, will participate in the protest. Smith has issued a statement and written an editorial against the right-to-work law, and several NFL players, including Indiana native and Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler, have also spoken out.”

Read more at the link and plan your first Annual Super Bowl Occupation Party for this Sunday!  Stay sober and have fun.

Go Giants (unless you live in Massachussetts).

February 9th:

Watch “The Battle of Oakland” video about the January 28th @OccupyOakland events were hundreds were arrested for expressing their right to assemble and protest.

Check it out here

February 24th:

Occupy Wall Street group plans a National Convention in Philadelphia in July.  Read about it at the link above.

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