A reader on the Brooklyn Bridge

A reader was on the Brooklyn Bridge yesterday with Occupy Wall Street and she wanted to give an account of what she saw:

I was a protester on the Brooklyn Bridge on Saturday, October 1. My friend and I joined the march a few blocks short of the bridge and were marching along chanting etc. As we got close to the Bridge the marchers divided, some going on the walkway, some on the road. Nobody tried to stop marchers from going onto the road. (I’ve since read reports that have police claiming they were using bullhorns to try to deter people from marching onto the road. I didn’t see or hear a single cop doing any such thing.) At the time it seemed as if either route was allowable, the split being necessary because of the volume of the march. Then, a few minutes later, it became clear that something was happening on the road. Those of us on the walkway stopped and tried to see what the commotion was about. I saw dozens of police officers in white shirts attempting to stop the people who were marching. They began pulling seemingly random people out of the crowd and putting plastic handcuffs on them. The handcuffed protesters were then taken to waiting vans. At a certain point the marchers sat down and then they started to chant, “Let us go! Let us go!” From where I was standing it was hard to understand why they couldn’t turn around if they wanted to go. Only later did I learn that the police had “kettled” them, that is trapped them in place using plastic orange fencing. It’s obvious that the police intended to use this strategy, which is why they made no attempt to stop marchers from going onto the roadway in the first place and why they had so many vans standing at the ready. Trap people on a road and them arrest them for being there.

Edit: I’m sorry, but it looks like she’s not able to take questions immediately. It’s the first time I’ve tried this “ask a question” and I think I was unclear in my directions.

* I’m in the backyard in Michigan chasing an intermittent internet connection to put this up, so I won’t be able to respond to commenters.

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157 replies
  1. 1
  2. 2
    singfoom says:

    Thanks for being out there Agnes, I at least support what you guys are doing! I wish I could get out there and march with you guys, but it’s not possible. Thanks for taking the time out to answer our questions.

    At the point at which the crowd split, there was no police telling people to say off the road?

  3. 3
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    It’s so hard to make sense of this entire incident…it just looks like a massive example of upper management FAIL at the NYPD, as they’re confronted with a fast moving (well, at the speed of a stroll) situation and can’t figure out what they’re supposed to do, probably because the various people in the chain of command, in typical bureaucratic fashion, don’t want to be responsible for whatever happens.

  4. 4
    poco says:

    Well, I was on the walkway on the Brooklyn Bridge yesterday too, and I can totally vouch for what Agnes is describing. It was just happenstance that I moved to the walkway, my friend was on the roadway and I was initially trying to get to that side, so we could march together–when I couldn’t he hopped over the divider to join me. The police were there but they were not warning anybody not to go on road.

  5. 5
    Journalmalist says:

    Hi Agnes — Any idea what the precise law being broken was? The one that got the ‘seemingly random’ people singled out and handcuffed?

  6. 6
    Mr Furious says:

    Everything I’ve heard/read from my NYC friends at the bridge matches this account.

    Of course, any media attention on this will focus on the he said/she said account of the bridge arrests and ignore the purpose of the protest in the first place (Look no further then the shifting narrative of the NYT for evidence of this).

    All it takes to dominate network news is a dozen Teabaggers at a town hall meeting to have all of their imaginary grievances aired, but thousands of liberals spending days on Wall Street are portrayed as a drum circle.

    (edited to fix iPhone typing)

  7. 7
    singfoom says:

    OT, but what’s with the “Order my book to learn how Liberalism destroys nations and peoples” ad on the FP of BJ?

  8. 8
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Loneoak:

    disfavor the observed facts

    The Colbert Rule: it’s absolutely inviolable.

  9. 9

    @poco:

    It’s the road. Do people really need to be told not to walk in the road when they don’t have parade permits to do so?

  10. 10
    WhyKnot241 says:

    Off topic, sorry…

    Can someone ask John if the Steelers have heard of this thing called…pass protection???

    On topic, I really, really hope #occupywallstreet is just the beginning.

  11. 11
  12. 12
    Corner Stone says:

    @WhyKnot241: Apparently Cole has forgotten it’s football season.

  13. 13
    Cat Lady says:

    Every day in every way the corporate media tips its hand. This event is going to wake a lot of people up to the fact that the media is not your friend and has no investment in informing you, just distracting you. The curtain is being inexorably drawn back on the 1% and their operating mechanisms. Look! There’s a Kardashian!

  14. 14
    keestadoll says:

    Stay strong. Videotape EVERYTHING and tell your friends to document everything too. Maybe a “post your video from the NYC protest” post Kay?

  15. 15
    Tim Connor says:

    @Cat Lady:

    the media is not your friend and has no investment in informing you, just distracting you.

    Bingo.

  16. 16
    tommybones says:

    As someone who regularly has to use a bullhorn to communicate with large crowds, I can assure you that the footage of the NYPD officer issuing the warning via bullhorn (video released by NYPD) revealed that the bullhorn was:

    a) not turned to a high enough volume, and
    b) insufficient to reach all but a small portion of protesters at the head of the pack

  17. 17
    Raven (formerly stuckinred) says:

    @tommybones: But good enough for a CYA.

  18. 18
    Evelyn says:

    There’s video of the protesters first getting on the bridge at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fockzr7rXys. It’s pretty clear that the police were entrapping them.

  19. 19
    poco says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again): Yeah, its a road, but really you had to be there. The march to BB was organized, people were obeying what the police were saying about remaining on sidewalks–boisterous but not breaking rules. When we reached BB the funnel to the walkway is pretty narrow; 2 lanes of the roadway were marked out by the police as traffic free, so a lot of people assumed that the police were facilitating the march. Yes, perhaps massively naive, but a lot of protesters were having friendly back-and-forths with many of the Blue shirts–a lot of marchers (not all perhaps) had no idea that they were doing anything wrong.

  20. 20
    Kay says:

    @singfoom:

    I’m gonna fill in for a bit because she’s delayed a little here.

    The charge stated was disorderly and obstructing a roadway, is what she heard.

  21. 21
    KJ says:

    The NY Time just released two videos from the police backing up their version of things:

    http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes......;seid=auto

  22. 22
  23. 23
    Corner Stone says:

    Andre Johnson hurt. Hope it’s a hammy and not an MCL.

  24. 24
    gnomedad says:

    @singfoom:

    OT, but what’s with the “Order my book to learn how Liberalism destroys nations and peoples” ad on the FP of BJ?

    Just a robo-ad generated by keywords seen on this page. I just take a deep breath and be happy this loon is generating a bit of income for Cole.

  25. 25
    Kay says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    Well, there is the general rule of “notice”, even in terms of a traffic violation. I think that’s in play here, re: crowd control, if not in a strict legal sense.

    One would generally allow notice, and then (reasonable) time to comply with whatever the order is.

  26. 26
    cokane says:

    I’m beginning to think Cain winning the Repub nom could be the best thing in the world for the Dems, though it’s still very unlikely.

    As a complete political noob, he would wilt under the pressure of a long campaign season. He would do terrible in televised debates with Obama. And I think his candidacy would depress some of the anti-nearer vote that would normally fuel the 2012 general.

  27. 27
    mistermix says:

    @Loneoak: You can’t see that link if you’re not logged into Facebook, so I made a copy and posted it here:

    http://www.balloon-juice.com/w....._blame.jpg

  28. 28
    jeff says:

    NYCLU guy who was there reports as follows:

    Where the entrance to the bridge narrowed their path, some marchers, including organizers, stuck to the generally agreed-upon route and headed up onto the wooden walkway that runs between and about 15 feet above the bridge’s traffic lanes.

    But about 20 others headed for the Brooklyn-bound roadway, said Christopher T. Dunn of the New York Civil Liberties Union, who accompanied the march. Some of them chanted “take the bridge.” They were met by a handful of high-level police supervisors, who blocked the way and announced repeatedly through bullhorns that the marchers were blocking the roadway and that if they continued to do so, they would be subject to arrest.

    http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes......bridge/?hp

  29. 29
    Warren Terra says:

    I admire and support the protesters, the police haven’t generally acquitted themselves well with Occupy Wall Street, which is in some cases an absurd understatement, and I’m sure they could have handled this particular situation much, much better.

    All that being said, you don’t really need a specific warning from the police to know that an unpermitted march obstructing city streets is a violation that risks tickets or arrests. I rather assumed getting arrested was the point of the exercise.

  30. 30
    c u n d gulag says:

    Agnes,
    Thanks for your activism.

    Unfortunately, I’m a bit too handicapped to join you guys. I’m unemployed so I can’t even send pizza’s. But I’m there in spirit!

    My marching days ended in DC in early ’07 at the huge Anti-war rally; and after our own rally in Fayetteville, NC, in March of that year, where I was one of the organizers.

    Keep it up, everyone!
    Don’t give up!

  31. 31
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Kay:

    One would generally allow notice, and then (reasonable) time to comply with whatever the order is.

    This is if you’re reasonable.

    We’re not talking about reasonable people, we’re talking about fascists.

    What you do is put a barrier up at the Brooklyn end, allow no more protesters to pass through on the vehicle roadway, and allow those who had, up to that point, to continue through. That’s if your reasonable.

    But as I said, reasonable is out of the question.

    Instead you’ve got this Herbert attitude in place that these vile skells must be punished for daring to speak up against the Galtian Overlords who just handed the NYPD $4.6 million.

  32. 32
    Alex S. says:

    I can’t wait for Glenn Greenwald to condemn the questionable use of police force against american people… /snark

  33. 33
    Davis X. Machina says:

    Some of them chanted “take the bridge.”

    Fifty, sixty people can’t take the bridge. Fifty, sixty thousand could have.

    Quantity has a quality all its own.

  34. 34
    Robert says:

    It comes down to this. Did the protesters have the permit to march down an open traffic lane? If not, they broke the law. No entrapment, no “gotcha” moment. They broke the law. Period. If they went through the proper channels to protest across the Brooklyn Bridge, they wouldn’t have been arrested. I have no sympathy for those people for parading without a permit over a busy bridge.

  35. 35
    Mr Furious says:

    @jeff:
    If there were twenty people heading onto the roadway chanting “Take the Bridge!” it seems pretty clear the police could and should have stopped things right then and there. The fact that that only seems to have occurred in the NYT hippie-punching version makes it seem either unlikely, or supportive of the entrapment version of events.

  36. 36
    Evelyn says:

    @mistermix:

    It should be noted that the coauthor in the revised version is: “Al Baker, police bureau chief for The New York Times — and the son of a police lieutenant — brings you inside the nation’s largest police force every Thursday.”

  37. 37
    Judas Escargot says:

    @Robert:

    If they went through the proper channels to protest across the Brooklyn Bridge, they wouldn’t have been arrested.

    You seriously think that permit would have been granted?

    The Law exists to serve the People. Not the other way around.

  38. 38
    Kay says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    Right. I agree. Were I there I would rather they avoid police contact, because it’s easier. But that’s a bit of a cynical take, really. It’s a practical reality.

    I’m just not sure they were able to avoid it once they were on the bridge. I think that the blocked off areas of roadway (if that part is true) would tend to make an ordinary person think that was a walkway.

  39. 39
    Mr Furious says:

    @Robert: Do you live in New York City, Robert? Do you realize that parades, marches and all manner of events take place in and on the streets all the fucking time? That people in attendance are not handed copies of permits nor do they generally know whether or if permits have been applied for or granted? People follow the crowd, and if the crowd and the police are moving onto a roadway, there is every reason to expect that that might be sanctioned?

  40. 40
    jeff says:

    @Mr Furious:

    I agree. I think the guy I’m quoting is very much on the side of the protest (he’s a protester).

  41. 41

    @Kay:

    Well, there is the general rule of “notice”, even in terms of a traffic violation. I think that’s in play here, re: crowd control, if not in a strict legal sense.

    Isn’t this notice (the bottom video, that is)?

  42. 42
    jeff says:

    @Robert:

    Some of the people made that decision, apparently. But I have tons of sympathy for those who had no idea and who may have been lead to believe that they were following police directions.

  43. 43
    MikeJ says:

    @mistermix:

    You can’t see that link if you’re not logged into Facebook,

    I don’t even have a fb account and I could see it.

  44. 44
    Spaghetti Lee says:

    @cokane:

    What does “nearer” mean, anyway? Don’t think I ever caught that.

  45. 45
    MikeJ says:

    @Spaghetti Lee:

    What does “nearer” mean, anyway? Don’t think I ever caught that.

    Blazing Saddles. “The new sherrif is a n-(clang sound effect)” ” He said the new sheriff is near!”

  46. 46

    @Mr Furious:

    So you’re saying that New Yorkers are uninformed lemmings? Interesting.

  47. 47
    Kay says:

    @Robert:

    FWIW, I agree with you on the general permit issue. I read that Occupy Cleveland will be getting a permit, and I think that’s wise. We probably disagree on police interactions with ordinary people. I think they’re trained in the law (as applied) and they should impart the rules clearly to people who may have an interaction with a police officer only sporadically. One of the two is a professional, and it isn’t the marcher. Just a general duty I see as practical measure, for any professional, not a strict legality issue. Assume they don’t know, and assume good-faith compliance once they’re told, and go from there. I’m not a big fan of “efficiency” when dealing with people.

  48. 48

    @jeff:

    Sympathy? It isn’t like they were Andy Griffith, just following the crowd into some football game.

    Let’s be honest: This was a protest march. Marching illegally on the bridge was an act of civil disobedience. Getting arrested is a goal.

  49. 49
    Loneoak says:

    @Kay:

    One of the two is a professional, and it isn’t the marcher. Just a general duty I see as practical measure, for any professional, not a strict legality issue. Assume they don’t know, and assume good-faith compliance once they’re told, and go from there. I’m not a big fan of “efficiency” when dealing with people.

    Yes, exactly. Robert’s position is willfully naive about the point of police enforcing regulations ‘efficiently.’ The point of this exercise was entrapment, not public safety.

  50. 50
    Kay says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    I’m not a police-trasher. I think it’s a difficult job. I know lots of very good cops, through my work. I read their reports, and I see that some of them are very, very good at de-escalating a conflict, and that’s difficult.

    I would just say, that in my job I have to constantly remind myself that while I’m in court all of the time, most of the people I encounter there will be there one or two times in their lifetime.

    They don’t know. I do. I tell them. I feel as if I avoid a lot of misunderstanding and fear that way. It’s easier.

  51. 51
    Lojasmo says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    Isn’t this notice (the bottom video, that is)?

    That recording was taken not five feet from the bullhorn, and it was nearly intelligible.

  52. 52
    jeff says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    Have you ever been in the midst of a march? I have and I could not see beyond a few people, and I did end up in a disallowed place and was nearly arrested. I agree that this was a deliberate action of civil disobedience by a few, but disagree that anyone in the middle could have known. It’s really not ultimately that big a deal, except for those who got arrested and for those who are claiming the NYPD was breaking the law (they were not).

  53. 53

    @Kay:

    Yeah, but we’re talking about a protest that just made (local and prog-o-spheric) headlines all week after nearly the same fucking thing happened last Saturday.

  54. 54

    @Lojasmo:

    And why was that? It wouldn’t have anything to do with all of the protestors shouting over it, would it?

  55. 55
    handsmile says:

    I have learned from various sources (friends at the protest, online accounts, even an interview with a protestor broadcast on NYC’s NY1 cable-tv channel), that as the arrests were taking place on the Brooklyn Bridge roadway, police stopped all passage along the pedestrian walkways from both Manhattan-Brooklyn directions.

    When asked for an explanation for the blockage, police reportedly responded: “Ongoing police activity,” “It’s for your own protection.” I have no doubt whatsoever that the intent was to limit the amount of photo- and video documentation of the means and methods of arrest.

    Commenter Loneoak’s (#1) captured “screen grab” of the NYT article is an important illustration of how skeptically one must regard all accounts by the American corporate media of the “Occupy Wall Street” protest. Per KJ’s post above (#21), it is sadly predictable that the NYT chooses to link only police-produced footage of the incident.

    Here is a link to photographs of the Brooklyn Bridge march and arrests published by the Guardian. LIke on so many other crucial events world-wide, the Guardian has distinguished itself by its coverage of the protest.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/worl.....NETTXT3487

  56. 56
    Loneoak says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    But your arguments in favor of the police’s actions would seem to disallow ALL marches as they actually happen in the real world. Find me a march that doesn’t have shouting crowds of people following whatever is happening in front of them and can’t see 50 feet forward. If you enforce regulations to the letter then you are making all marches illegal. Which is the point, isn’t it?

  57. 57

    @Spaghetti Lee:

    “nearer” I’m not sure about.

    In this context, “near” refers to Blazing Saddles, where it was said that the Sheriff was . . . near because they didn’t want to say explicitly that the Sheriff was a nxxx. In today’s political context, it is short hand for referring to a person’s skin color.

  58. 58
    Kay says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    Right. I get your objection. I just think there’s been this general drift to looking at the person interacting with the police, and finding this sort of “duty”.
    I would suggest that one side has a clear set of guidelines and duties and the other does not. There’s a reason for that. The police agency or actor has an enormous amount of power that the individual simply doesn’t have.
    If we want to go to even-steven, both sides have equal duties, mistakes were made, you’re going to have give the ordinary person a measure of power.
    I think it’s smart to keep your hands visible when pulled over. But absent an order to do so, the duty flows one way, because the power flows one way.

  59. 59
    Mr Furious says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again): Not at all. I’m saying that what is clearly an ongoing and organized protest escorted by police might easily be interpreted by those deep in the crowd as allowed to exist.

    If I attend the local Art Fair that takes over downtown Ann Arbor, am I an uninformed lemming if I fail to go down to City Hall and examine the requisite permits? Or do I just assume things are in order and follow the crowd onto the street? AAPD could justifiably corral every artist and patron according to you if those permits weren’t filed…

  60. 60
    poco says:

    @Loneoak: This! Exactly–this is how all marches work, and as I have said over and over again–the fact that 2 lanes of the road were cleared of traffic, the fact that as people poured onto the road, the police standing there didn’t do or say anything to deter them, in fact started walking with protesters; the police may have informed the 20 front leaders who were making a conscious decision, the rest were simply following what they thought were lawful plans, and they arrested 700 people, not 20.

    Robert Mackey has left NYT and the lede, he is at the Guardian now, and the lede is no longer your trusted go-to source for news of protests.

  61. 61
    Kay says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    Also, FWIW, my political opinion is different on this than most that I’ve read here.
    I don’t think arrests will engender sympathy. In my experience, a person gets arrested, most people spend a lot of time sussing out what they did “wrong”.
    I sat once and watched a CNN media personality spend 5 minutes describing all the things that a woman who was pulled over and tased did wrong.
    She was pissed. She wasn’t immediately complying. Maybe she’s a moron, I don’t know. The thing is, it’s not her job to know what to do when she’s pulled over. She can be a moron. That doesn’t mean she gets hit with a taser. It’s not “punishment” for being a pain in the ass, and talking too much.

  62. 62

    @Loneoak:

    ALL marches? There are marches where the organizers are, ya know, organized, and if they don’t get parade permits they attempt to inform the marchers on what they might likely face on the road ahead of them.

    Take a look at the film of the old civil rights marches and you’ll notice the occasional man wearing an armband. Those were the marshals. It was their duty to keep order in the ranks of marchers. That’s but one element of organization that this protest is sorely lacking.

  63. 63
    Corner Stone says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again): Sounded better in the original German.

  64. 64
    Geoduck says:

    @Linda Featheringill:

    In this context, “near” refers to Blazing Saddles, where it was said that the Sheriff was . . . near because they didn’t want to say explicitly that the Sheriff was a nxxx.

    Blazing Saddles throws the uncensored n-word around with gleeful abandon. The “near” bit is a joke about miscommunication thanks to a church bell:

    “HEY! The Sheriff is a ni(DONG!)”
    “What’d he say?”
    “The Sheriff is near!”
    “NO, GAWBLAMMIT, DANGBLAMMIT!! THE SHERIFF IS A NI(DONG!)”

  65. 65
    Mr Furious says:

    Also, in the NYPD’s haste to fill paddy wagons, tragedy could easily have ensued. Nothing could go wrong trapping and arresting hundreds of people on an active highway several hundred feet above a river?

    I thought there was something about protecting and serving….

  66. 66

    @Kay:

    And I can’t disagree with you about a taser incident such as you describe, just like I think that we agree that Tony Baloney’s action last week was so far out of order as to be a crime. And, hell, I’ll even grant that there were probably more than a handful of marchers who were arrested yesterday who genuinely didn’t know why it was happening. But I credit the majority of this crowd with having the brains to know exactly what was happening and why.

  67. 67
    Loneoak says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    So unless the march looks exactly like our idealized fantasy of responsibility and orderliness the cops ought to arrest the rabble? I just don’t get it. I’ve been in plenty of marches (even been detained by the police) and never once have I seen one with marshalls in suits. There should be space for discretion on the part of police and imperfection on the part of the protestors, as Kay is arguing. That would be properly in the spirit of the 1st Amendment, which says nothing about permits and armbands.

  68. 68
  69. 69
    jeff says:

    The police video before the bridge confirm that those at the head of the march decided on civil disobedience.

    http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes......;seid=auto

    It’s a discredit to all to claim that the front lines of that group were not clearly told they would be arrested and ordered not to proceed. Beyond 5 rows back, maybe, I don’t see how anyone could have known.

  70. 70
    Scott P. says:

    I’ve been in plenty of marches (even been detained by the police) and never once have I seen one with marshalls in suits.

    And that’s one reason why marching as a political tactic has failed the last few decades. One thing the Old Left knew how to do was organize and enforce discipline within the ranks.

  71. 71

    @Loneoak:

    Even the civil rights protestors, marshals notwithstanding, were arrested. They planned on it and for it. Hell, when SNCC was fighting for voting rights in Mississippi just about their entire strategy was to get arrested, fill the jails and jam the courts up to the point where the courts couldn’t go about the rest of their routine business.

    Let me ask you this: How many of those marches of which you’ve been part have succeeded in achieving their goals?

  72. 72
    Evelyn says:

    Can I be clear about something? This is not the left that’s out there. I highly encourage you guys to go out there and talk to people yourself. There are now Occupy movements happening in at least 80 cities, including Chicago, LA, Denver, Hartford… there’s a list up on Occupytheplanet.org.

    The movement is non-partisan, and the people who are out there all have incredibly different political views. I’ve been out there in Chicago every day for the past five days and the diversity couldn’t be more real. It’s hard to organize a growing movement that really pulls from so many different backgrounds, especially because whenever we go out marching, we pull in more people. Organization is a huge priority, but it’s difficult with this kind of movement and one of the first things that we say at the General Assemblies is that it will take patience, respect, time, and the willingness to be truly democratic for this movement to solidify itself. It gets better every day.

  73. 73

    @Loneoak:

    There should be space for discretion on the part of police and imperfection on the part of the protestors, as Kay is arguing.

    And the police didn’t arrest every protestor in the traffic lanes. They let the people in the back go, figuring they hadn’t been able to hear the warnings at all.

  74. 74
    RalfW says:

    Cops did this sort of thing to a bunch of protesters at the RNC national convention…in 1992 in Houston Texas.

    We were on a legally permitted march from Hermann Park to the Astrodome’s “free speech” pen when protesters were either guided (or allowed without resistance, depending on who on our side you asked) to go off-course into a dead end “too close to the dome” and probably 1,000 were bussed away and threatened with arrest. The buses and the cops on horseback were waiting for us, so this had to have been their plan.

    Three of my friends and I were able to dodge detention and scramble to the “free speech” zone. We got interviewed by a credentialed WaPo reporter and we gave the full, detailed story of the misdirection which he found fascinating (he was a brit expat used to beltway coverage), but the paper the next day only covered the disorderly conduct of us rabble.

    It was a scam and a planned trick by the authorities. Plain and simple. And whaddaya know, 19 years later the tactic still works – more or less (we’ll see if there’s any push-back. The pepperspray incidents earlier in the week help call police tactics into question at least)

  75. 75
    Lojasmo says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again):

    Immaterial. If the police are making a good faith claim supporting the contain that they gave a meaningful warning, the evidence should support that.

    There were OPEN FUCKING LANES, for christ’s sake.

  76. 76
    Agnes says:

    To the people who think the protesters were blocking a road and therefore deserved to be arrested, what about the “kettling”? Is it okay to prevent people from leaving SO they can be arrested?

  77. 77
    Scott P. says:

    The movement is non-partisan, and the people who are out there all have incredibly different political views. I’ve been out there in Chicago every day for the past five days and the diversity couldn’t be more real. It’s hard to organize a growing movement that really pulls from so many different backgrounds, especially because whenever we go out marching, we pull in more people.

    I admire the commitment to grass-roots democracy, but history has shown that it is exactly this kind of angry, inchoate, disorganized gathering that is easily hijacked by those who are organized and ideologically committed.

  78. 78
    Cat Lady says:

    @Scott P.:

    This. I’m rooting hard from the sidelines, but there needs to be a Gandhi coach. The Man is only mildly amused about all of this now.

  79. 79
    CaseyL says:

    This is another in the continuing series of cases where a lot of people believe the purpose of political participation is some version of self-validation, whether the self-validation takes the form of pissing off people who are not on your side or having a wonderful collective moment where we all congratulate ourselves for being there.

    I’m trying to imagine the marchers at Selma believing the purpose of their confrontation with the South’s policing and economic forces was to piss people off or show off their solidarity. No: the purpose was to show the rest of the country what they’d had to live with for 5+ generations, and thus shame the nation as a whole into acting. That’s why there were marshals; that’s why the marchers were thoroughly trained in civil disobedience… and, last but not least, that’s why the marchers knew they would go to jail and made being imprisoned part of the protest.

    What is the purpose of the march/occupation?

    Know that ahead of time, and bend all the activities and energies and responses to whatever that goal is.

    If the purpose of the march/occupation is to show off, then it will fail and it will deserve to fail.

  80. 80
    jpe says:

    Knowledge of laws is irrebuttably presumed. Put differently, ignorance of the law is no excuse.

  81. 81
    Shinobi says:

    I actually think the protests are surprisingly well organized. I’ve read their general assembly minutes and watched quite a bit of the live stream. They do an amazing job of disseminating information into the crowd. (For instance if the officer at the front line of the protesters had called a mic check, the people behind may actually have heard what he said. They repeat one person’s words further and further out in the crowd, it is pretty amazing.)

    It certainly doesn’t LOOK organized at all from the outside, but they have committees on various issues and stuff is getting done. Just because there is no clear “leader” people seem to think it is completely disorganized. I don’t think that that is true. It is messy, just like democracy, but it isn’t without any organization.

  82. 82
    CaseyL says:

    The only time marches have succeeded in achieving the ends and goals the marchers set for them was when there WERE specific goals, and when the marchers were trained in civil disobedience. Going to jail was one of the tactics: the marchers knew they would be arrested, and beaten, and imprisoned, and made that part of the protest.

    Occupy Wall Street, and Occupy [Inset Name of City Here] mean well. They all mean well. But they have no idea what they want to accomplish, and they have no training in civil disobedience, and apparently no march leaders to make sure everyone knows what they’re supposed to do.

    That is a recipe for failure.

  83. 83
    Scott P. says:

    Digby has posted the list of grievances of the General Assembly. As one might expect, it is a mix of the cogent, the out-of-place, and the totally off base.

    The good: noting corporate excesses and the way the political process is skewed towards those with money. Complaints about corporations skirting laws for unethical purposes. Much good stuff here.

    The bad: Saying that corporations “run our governments.” They may have too much power, but they don’t have all the power.

    The bizarre: The complaints about student loans. There is a lot of reform needed here, but I disagree that post-secondary education is a “human right.” The complaint that corporations accepted bailouts “with impunity”. (I don’t think that word means what I think it means).

    The ugly: Digby has said that it is time for “a revolution.”

    Finally, I am not sure railing against nameless “corporations” is going to endear them to America at large. Lots of things are corporations. Ben and Jerry’s. Whole Foods. The World Wildlife Fund. The United States Fund for Unicef Corporation. The Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Do they all go up against the wall when the revolution comes?

  84. 84
    WaterGirl says:

    @CaseyL: Read this and tell me you still think that Occupy Wall Street is a failure.

    Occupy Wall Street is giving people a voice. It is helping people who don’t usually pay attention to understand that there is a 99% and a 1%. It’s a fight against “learned helplessness”.

    Don’t count it out just yet.

  85. 85
  86. 86
    Keith G says:

    That is a recipe for failure

    It may be. And this may also be a way to stimulate conversations that would not ordinarily be happening.

    These folks may not be perfect in their decision making, but unlike 99.9% of us they are actually fucking doing something.

    It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause….

  87. 87
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Scott P.: In a way you’re lucky if it’s hijacked. Then you get the February Revolution. At least the Tsar is gone. Then comes October.

    If you’re not lucky, you get a kind of left-Boulangism — a lot of people with a lot of slogans milling around waiting for a man on horseback to seize the Elyseé for them, and who never comes.

  88. 88
    WaterGirl says:

    @Scott P.:

    The bizarre: The complaints about student loans. There is a lot of reform needed here, but I disagree that post-secondary education is a “human right.”

    I just finished reading about 5 pages of We are the 99 Percent, and it doesn’t look so bizarre tome. These student loans are killing our young people.

    P.S. While I was typing this in, my email dinged to tell me about this message from Van Jones, from Rebuild the Dream:

    Wall Street has long been the home of the biggest threat to American democracy. Now it has become home to what may be our best hope for rescuing it.
    __
    For everyone who loves this country, for everyone whose heart is breaking for the growing ranks of the poor, for everyone who is seething at the unopposed demolition of America’s working and middle class: the time has come to get off the fence.
    __
    A new generation has gone to the scene of the crimes committed against our future. The time has come for all people of good will to give our full-throated backing to the young people of the Occupy Wall Street movement.
    __
    So this Wednesday, we’re joining with MoveOn, and labor and community groups in New York for a massive march down to the Occupy Wall Street encampment. And for those who can’t make it to New York, we’re also holding a huge online “Virtual March on Wall Street” in solidarity with the brave protesters in New York.

    It doesn’t matter that these kids who started things are not Gandhi, or that they aren’t organized the way some people want, or that they haven’t been trained in a certain way. This is turning out to be “if you build it, they will come”. For a lot of these folks, just showing up is an act of faith, because they are there in DC fighting for their survival instead of curling up in the fetal position and giving up.

    This is “We’re Mad as Hell and We’re Not Gonna Take it Anymore” meets some people and groups who DO know how to organize. I’m really disappointed in how many good folks here seem to be so negative about this effort.

  89. 89
    Kyle says:

    In these troubled economic times, the NYPD offers corporations great value for money — only $6571 per arrest! Beat that, Blackwater!
    The best corporate defense force money can buy.

    J.P Morgan Donates $4.6m to NYPD

  90. 90
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @WaterGirl: After reflecting upon how Seattle 1999 ended our environmentally destructive and humanly wasteful system of world trade, or at least the US’ participation in it, I for one am immensely optimistic.

  91. 91
    WaterGirl says:

    @Davis X. Machina: I couldn’t tell, serious comment, or snark?

  92. 92
    MikeJ says:

    @Scott P.:

    The complaint that corporations accepted bailouts “with impunity”

    Wasn’t most of the TARP stuff repaid?

  93. 93
    Corner Stone says:

    @WaterGirl: He didn’t quote any terms in French, so it must be snark.

  94. 94
    B W Smith says:

    I am of the mind that resistance to feudalism has to start somewhere and OWS is as good a place as any. If more organizations join in and more voices are shared through the “We Are the 99%” website, it will be noticed. Too many voices have been silent for too long. When the Tea Party first started, they were at least somewhat outraged at the Bank bailouts. Then the movement was co-opted to fight for the right’s special interest. Since I believe that we are the government, it is time to make our voices heard. I am as guilty as the next guy of being quiet and comfortable while too many citizens suffered around me. If one doesn’t like the chosen method of OWS, then pick a method more suitable for getting your point across. We all need to speak out and push for the necessary changes. Silence will get us nowhere.

  95. 95
    eemom says:

    @Keith G:

    These folks may not be perfect in their decision making, but unlike 99.9% of us they are actually fucking doing something.

    and just to run a bit with that concept, it would be my recommendation that this endless, tedious series of “UR DOING IT WRONG” posts from armchair activists be outlawed. Because by definition they are all being posted by people sitting on their asses in front of computer screens instead of being out there leading Teh Perfect Protest.

    But, Cole sure as shit ain’t gonna listen to me. And I’m not really a fan of censorship anyway. So whatever. Carry on with yer bitching and moaning, but please be advised that I think you’re a bunch of whiny-ass losers.

  96. 96
    Cassidy says:

    I’m not sure I understand the criticism. I haven’t formed much of an opinion on the protests yet, as I’m a little too cynical to believe anymore. I do know that my best job prospect involves me leaving my family (again) and going back to the ME (again) carrying a gun (again). I know that I’ve applied to well over 200 jobs in the past 6 weeks alone and had one job interview. I know that I can’t afford to pursue my dream. Hell, if this contracting thing doesn’t work I don’t know if I can pay rent or buy groceries or gas. I know I’m a tough motherfucker who’s cried myself to sleep more times in the past 2 months than I have my whole life. I know that sometimes I wonder if cashing in my SGLI before my 120 days are up wouldn’t be better for my family (I know it wouldn’t, but the thoughts creep in).

    So, I know I’m not as smart or educated as a lot of you all, but this whole thing should resonate in you. It doesn’t matter if it’s organized or if proper documentation is produced or published. What matters is that we are being screwed. For many, this is all they have left. We’ve given up our pride and our dreams. I am resigned to working until the day I die as long as I can provide a good life for my children. I am scared of getting old and watching my wife’s health problems take their toll. You shouldn’t be critical. You should be angry.

  97. 97
    maya says:

    @Davis X. Machina: I hear you DXM and I’m optimistic too. Having only a 6.44 p/e ratio, how can you go wrong? That first 1000 shares at the opening bell is mine, all mine.

  98. 98
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @Evelyn:

    This entire thread (well, most of it) is very useful, and yours is among the most interesting comments.

    Just a note, although most who go searching probably won’t be too confused: it’s actually http://www.occupytheplanet.com, not .org. Am glad to add that URL to bookmarked sites.

  99. 99
    Sasha says:

    Considering this and the pepper spray incident, shouldn’t there be a “Enhanced Law Enforcement Techniques” tag?

  100. 100
    Valenciennes says:

    Bootlickers abound.

  101. 101
    jpe says:

    I just finished reading about 5 pages of We are the 99 Percent, and it doesn’t look so bizarre tome

    It should be noted that it’s flat out bizarre that anyone could think 99% of the population is in favor of the various policy proposals floated. Maybe the OWS’ers don’t pay much attention to politics, but the country is pretty neatly split even on issues that shouldn’t be contentious.

  102. 102
    B W Smith says:

    @Cassidy: I know to say hang in there sounds hollow, but you have a wife and kids that love you and need you for a lot more than money. Your story in particular makes me angry. There is no excuse for someone who was willing to fight for our country to be choosing between food and shelter. I hope something comes through for you soon here at home and you don’t have to leave your family again to support them.

  103. 103
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cassidy: I refreshed 3 times before replying, ’cause I kept hoping someone who would know just what to say would reply.

    All I can say is… Shit. That really sucks, and it’s not right. You defend your country and you come back and you can’t find a fucking job. Like I said, it’s just not right. And it seems like some days I spend the whole day (or at least the part where I am reading about current events) shaking my head and thinking that things are just not right. So I am glad to see Occupy Wall Street and the We are the 99 Percent website. At least people don’t have to be alone in their despair, and maybe, just maybe, we can do something about it.

    Back to your situation… I am trying to figure out if I have you confused with someone else. I thought there was a Cassidy who wrote the night before leaving the service, but I thought that Cassidy was female (and I assumed unmarried) and you talk about your wife’s health problems so I am trying to figure out if you are the same person and I just got the demographic wrong.

    I cannot imagine applying for 200 jobs in 6 weeks. That takes a lot of personal strength and discipline. Is there anything I can do to help, or that any of us could do to help?

  104. 104

    Meanwhile, watch the New York Times change its Brooklyn Bridge story. It’s fascinating.

  105. 105
    jpe says:

    I cannot imagine applying for 200 jobs in 6 weeks. That takes a lot of personal strength and discipline.

    15/day really isn’t that hard. I’ve hit that number, and I have neither personal strength nor discipline.

    Edit: I initially read that as 200 in 2 weeks. Over 6 weeks that’s 4 / day. That’s not hard. The commenter is explaining just how crap the economy is, but that # of applications should be at least par for the course when one is actively looking.

  106. 106
    suzanne says:

    @Cassidy:

    You shouldn’t be critical. You should be angry.

    Word to that shit.

  107. 107
    maya says:

    @jpe: Perhaps. But certainly the OWS 99% claim is no less valid about an overall dissatisfied population number than the 27%ers who grab all the media attention.
    It probably has been stated already but Occupy Wall Street has more in common with the original Boston Tea party than anything that historic event’s present day free-downloaders have done. Did the Bostonians have a permit? Did they trespass? Who’s tea was it that was thrown into Boston Harbor? Was it Liberal tea? Union made tea? The government’s tea even? It was the British East India Company’s tea. Sounds more like what’s happening now, doesn’t it? Those 27%ers have switched to drinking Koch now, anyway.

  108. 108
    WaterGirl says:

    @jpe: Allowing for weekends, my math tells me that’s over 6 per day. And whether that takes personal strength and disciple would depend on the situation, I guess.

    If you are “phoning it in” and just trying to find x number of places to send your standard resume, that’s one thing. But if you’re working your butt off trying to find real jobs that would be a good fit, it seems to me that it would take a lot of time and emotional energy to do that.

    Also, depending on what jobs you are looking for, you may have to fill out a specific application for each job – entering your education and job experience a million different times in a million different formats.

    And all the while you are worrying/wondering what is going to happen if you DON’T find a job? And worrying/wondering what you will do then? Dealing with the disappointment and discouragement, when each time it doesn’t work out?

    I stand my my “personal strength and discipline” comment.

  109. 109
    WaterGirl says:

    @jpe:

    It should be noted that it’s flat out bizarre that anyone could think 99% of the population is in favor of the various policy proposals floated.

    The 99% is the number for the have-nots. As compared to the 1% who have almost all the wealth in this country.

    I am guessing that their list is the “collective” we – the superset of what passionate people in that group want. Really, what we need is for the number not to be 99% anymore.

  110. 110
    handsmile says:

    @jpe: (#104)

    I have neither personal strength nor discipline.

    Nor it appears are you burdened by human decency. To have written that sniveling remark in indirect response to Cassidy’s wrenching comment above (to which WaterGirl (#102) was empathetically replying) is repugnant.

    Also, in which language does the world “irrebuttably” appear (#79)?

  111. 111
    Cassidy says:

    @jpe: Well, that 200 number is an estimate. I’m being reasonably conservative. I’ve saved every single email thanking me for applying. Nothing like keeping a record of failure, lol. Secondly, that’s 200 amongst getting the kids enrolled in 2 different counties, moving my family to an apartment, etc. So really, it’s easy to go a couple of days without the time to apply and then in one day put in 31 job applications. That 200 is whittled down from well over 1000 that I’ve sifted through, everything from lawn and pest control to low level management. Some of those days were spent doing follow ups on what was submitted already. Other days were spent at the VA or DEERS or other such services, trying to look for pre-school, etc. Basically, A lot of time spent doing a myriad of things that involve trying to get a family settled.

    But none of that is really the point. The point is that people like myself (vets, hard working blue collar people, etc.) and younger people who are educated and have done everything the “right way” cannot make it anymore. I don’t think being a vet entitles me to a job. I’d like to think that someone looks at my resume more than once before discarding it. I’d like to think that someone would hire me more for my managerial experience than my ability to shoot. I’d like to be a normal person working a normal job. Can you imagine the feeling after 13 years of voluntary public of service and then hoping to get a “contractor” job? I really have ethical anxiety over knowing that I might be a mercenary in less than a week. That’s not hyperbole. That’s what it is: soldier for hire. I’m a reasonably intelligent guy who works hard and is honest. And it makes me so angry to think that’s the only way I can give my family a good life and buy a house and pay off my car and… so on and so forth. it makes me angry at myself that I chose to get out of the military to pursue a better life and I’ll end up working at McDonald’s… maybe, if I’m not overqualified.

  112. 112
    Scott P. says:

    Then you get the February Revolution. At least the Tsar is gone. Then comes October.

    That would make the General Assembly the equivalent to the Soviet of Workers and Soldier’s Deputies?

    The problem is that there is no Tsar to depose. Other than Obama. And maybe that’s their goal. I’m not sure.

    At any rate, what I’m trying to say is that we already live in a democracy. The levers of power are there for anyone able to move them. Organize, find good candidates, take over local Democratic party wards, GOTV. That’s the key to victory. We’ll see if this leads to any of that.

  113. 113
    B W Smith says:

    @Cassidy: If you don’t mind my asking, what area in the country are you looking? Some states are better than others for a job search.

  114. 114
    handsmile says:

    jpe:

    I owe you an apology on the word “irrebuttably.” (Indignation overriding moderation I suppose.) The word does not appear in any one of my three sizable home dictionaries. Since posting my comment #109, however, a Google search does indicate several entries for the word. I would maintain that your phrase “irrebuttably presumed” seems a solecism.

  115. 115
    eemom says:

    @Scott P.:

    pursuant to my previous comment, why don’t you STFU unless and until you elaborate for us exactly everything you PERSONALLY have done to Organize, find good candidates, take over local Democratic party wards, GOTV.

  116. 116
    Cassidy says:

    At any rate, what I’m trying to say is that we already live in a democracy. The levers of power are there for anyone able to move them. Organize, find good candidates, take over local Democratic party wards, GOTV. That’s the key to victory.

    This has not been true for a very long time. They have the money. We do not. Elections do not happen without money. We have the best democracy money can buy.

  117. 117
    Kay says:

    Now I’m back and it looks like I missed Agnes. What were we talking about again? Oh, yeah, disorganized Lefties :)

    As I’ve said now three times, I love the protestors for showing up.

    But what about this? When you are engaged in a collective action, and working with a group of people, is there a duty or desire to take care of each other?

    Because I think there is. It’s one of the nicer parts of these things. That’s what solidarity means.

    So. Given that. Should the marchers at the front of the line take care of those coming after, and make sure they don’t walk right into a giant orange net and get arrested? Should the leaders, organizers, whatever, take better care of “their” fellow-marchers?

    I’ll give you an example. When we doing petitions for SB5, I got several calls from newer people asking (for example) if they could stand inside the post office, or solicit signatures inside a mall. I didn’t assume they knew they couldn’t do those things. I called them back and said “don’t do that, or you’ll get thrown out”. Not because I’m crazy about rigid rule enforcement, but because I don’t want them in a position where they get thrown out. I don’t want them harmed. I want them to succeed.

    Just a thought, from the person-in-the-back-of-the-line perspective.

  118. 118
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @maya:

    The government’s tea even? It was the British east India Company’s tea. Sounds more like what’s happening now, doesn’t it? Those 27%ers have switched to drinking Koch now, anyway.

    It was, technically, the government’s tea and the company’s tea. As the company was a government sanctioned monopoly, a common thing at the time.

    But you’re absolutely right that the teabaggers utterly miss what the Boston Tea Party was about. Mainly because their problem isn’t with the deficit, or the national debt. If it were, they would have been howling at the top of their lungs ten years ago instead of piping up just a bit past 8PM PST on 4 November 2008 when John McCain conceded to the near guy.

  119. 119
    Cassidy says:

    @B W Smith: Right now in Florida, but I’ve applied all over the country and wrote in bold flashing letters “willing to relocate”. Not really, but I’ve made sure it’s prominent on my applications. But that isn’t the problem really. Basically, in 2008, my wife and I decided we were done with the Army. So I did my last deployment and then spent all of 2010 getting ready to get out, saving money, etc. I started applying to federal Jobs in feb, mostly law enforcement and started planning to look for work locally around May. So once I hit that benchmark, started looking around, getting things set up to go to the Police and Fire Academy(s), knowing that I was best suited for one of those; heavily tilted towards LE as they have better hiring rates, but Fire is what I want to do. The plan was to come down here, get a full time job working nights, go to academy during the day and suck up the lack of sleep. So far every plan has failed. Lots of rejections from various 3 letter agencies. And I can’t find a decent paying job working nights to pay the bills. I’m not averse to working two jobs, but that nixes the academy. Once again, I’m okay with that if I can make enough off two jobs and get my wife through her last year of nursing school. But, that’s the failing. Even two jobs at 40 hrs a week isn’t going to do it. It might for a while, but I’m one bad day away from being hosed. Every plan has fallen through. And I’ve reached the end of my ideas.

  120. 120
    Anne Laurie says:

    @Cassidy:

    So, I know I’m not as smart or educated as a lot of you all, but this whole thing should resonate in you. It doesn’t matter if it’s organized or if proper documentation is produced or published. What matters is that we are being screwed. For many, this is all they have left. We’ve given up our pride and our dreams. I am resigned to working until the day I die as long as I can provide a good life for my children. I am scared of getting old and watching my wife’s health problems take their toll. You shouldn’t be critical. You should be angry.

    Ten million times, THIS.

    Also, don’t underestimate your own smarts, and Nil Illegitimi Carborundum… they don’t deserve the satisfaction.

  121. 121
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cassidy: I”m sure you have thought everything through, but I will ask anyway, at the risk of annoying you. Is there some kind of unemployment you could get after leaving the service? Or has that already run out?

  122. 122
    Cassidy says:

    @WaterGirl: I was deemed ineligible.

  123. 123
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cassidy: Okay, I am back to loud sighs and shaking my head again.

    I am wishing I had contacts somewhere in the fields you are looking at. Have you checked out the balloon juice job threads for leads, or ideas and inspiration?

  124. 124
    B W Smith says:

    @Cassidy: I don’t know if this will help and you may have looked into it already but I understand that both UPS and FedEx are hiring (probably in anticipation of changes at the post office). I’m in Georgia so I don’t know if it is nationwide or not. It’s not your dream job, but the pay is decent and the health benefits are ok. They always add on for the holidays, but I think this is different. If not, it might get you through the end of the year. I’m not sure if there is a way for you to follow local police and fire jobs or police jobs on college campuses but that is another opportunity that you might consider. I wish you luck, I know it’s hard. My son was out of work for a while and it is hard not to get depressed. He wound up taking the risk and starting his own business. So far, it seems to be paying off even in a bad economy

  125. 125
    JPL says:

    @jeff: Thanks for the link.. this is from the comments

    Do the police seriously think that the protesters could hear that megaphone? I could barely hear it in the video!…………………………………………..
    That hardly seems like notice to me.

  126. 126

    @Lojasmo:

    There were OPEN FUCKING LANES, for christ’s sake.

    Well, yeah there were. It wasn’t planned to close the bridge to vehicular traffic.

  127. 127
    nancydarling says:

    @Cassidy: Cassidy, I hope you stick around here at BJ and keep us posted. I second what Anne Laurie said at #120. Most of us here are not as smart as we are smart-assed, but the heart of this blog is basically good and kind. Good luck to you, my friend.

  128. 128
  129. 129
    Scott P. says:

    This has not been true for a very long time. They have the money. We do not. Elections do not happen without money. We have the best democracy money can buy.

    Every sentence of this is wrong. We have plenty of money, and more importantly will and warm bodies. Conservatives didn’t get elected to school boards, country prosecutor and state legislatures across the county by spending a lot of money.

    Beyond that, you seem to be saying that our only hope lies in armed revolution. Is that what you propose?

  130. 130
    RalfW says:

    @Scott P.

    At any rate, what I’m trying to say is that we already live in a democracy.

    A democracy increasingly corrupted by massive flows of unregulated campaign cash, efforts to disenfranchise non-Republicans, and various astro-turfing fronts like the Tea Party. But yeah, a democracy. Thanks.

  131. 131
    Cassidy says:

    Every sentence of this is wrong.

    No it isn’t. Your idealism/ optimism is nice and I’m glad people still have it. I mean that. I do not and have not for a very long time. I’m a political junkie as much as the next person here and all I see is corporate and monied (sp?) interests buying our discourse. They’ve bought our media and our gov’t and have rigged the system so that fighting back is next to impossible.

  132. 132
    Scott P. says:

    I’m a political junkie as much as the next person here and all I see is corporate and monied (sp?) interests buying our discourse. They’ve bought our media and our gov’t and have rigged the system so that fighting back is next to impossible.

    Then buy a gun and start shooting, if that’s what you really believe.

  133. 133
    cynn says:

    Cassidy:@Cassidy: There must be a new econonmy that arises out of this mess. I value your service, and am willing to pay for it in kind. So are my neighbors.

  134. 134
    Nutella says:

    @Cassidy:

    I don’t know if you saw this in an earlier jobs thread, or if you’ve tried it already, but here’s something from soonergrunt in August:

    Here are some resources—www.usajobs.gov—come to work for one of the best employers around, the US Government. We’re still hiring. About half of the positions available right now do not require previous or current status. If you a Veteran, this should be your employer of choice, especially the VA.
    __
    Lastly, there are employers in OK that are hiring. There is a shortage here of qualified people to do jobs that don’t require an inbred bloodline or a full set of teeth, or that do require the ability to recite the alphabet without singing. Come to OK, and turn it purple, or slightly less red.

    If you can hang on till your wife finishes her nursing degree in a year, she should be in great demand then. Best of luck to you both.

  135. 135
    Cassidy says:

    @Nutella: Thank you, but I’ve applied to approx. 100 positions with the gov’t. I got one response. The hiring process for the groups I’m qualified for (law enforcement) takes months at a minimum if not years. I can’t count on that.

    @Scott P.: I never said that i believe an armed revolution is the way to go. I’ve been in war and have no wish for more. But let me ask you this: Gulf War II era vets have about 11% unemployment and 25% service connected disability. We took down a country and it’s army in little over a month. Why aren’t they scared? At what point does this dam burst?

  136. 136
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    This seems apt (from something someone posted on the Book of Faces, which of course I can’t find now or I’d give better attribution):

    The USA should invade the USA and win the hearts and minds of the population by building roads and bridges and putting the people to work.

  137. 137
    Valenciennes says:

    @Scott P.: lol (laugh out loud)

    @B W Smith: Do you fully understand just how hard it is for an unemployed person to move to another state?

  138. 138
    lethargytartare says:

    @KJ:

    those are some seriously deceptive videos if you haven’t seen longer clips.

    Both of the linked vids are from AFTER the protesters had marched hundreds of feet down the road, and in no way indicate any kind of warning that entering the roadway was going to be a problem.

  139. 139
    Cain says:

    @Cassidy:

    But none of that is really the point. The point is that people like myself (vets, hard working blue collar people, etc.) and younger people who are educated and have done everything the “right way” cannot make it anymore. I don’t think being a vet entitles me to a job. I’d like to think that someone looks at my resume more than

    If I had any powers, I would have hired you considering that you would have experience in “crisis management” and a number of other skills.

    Perhaps something is going wrong in your interviews? No matter what you have on your resume, I know that for me I really look at how a person comes across in an interview. We’ve hired a guy who was a Windows guy, for a Linux position because of how he did LAN parties believe it or not. We know that this is the kind of guy who can learn anything. Today he is doing pretty good.

    Of course, I can’t discount competition, but really.. something to analyze.

    Also have you used things like LinkedIn? You need to setup a network through that. Use the tools that are out there.

  140. 140
    Cain says:

    @Cassidy:

    at 40 hrs a week isn’t going to do it. It might for a while, but I’m one bad day away from being hosed. Every plan has fallen through. And I’ve reached the end of my ideas.
    ReplyReply

    Other than law enforcement, have you targeted anything else? Anything in the medical field? Gosh, I feel frustrated, I can’t imagine how you feel. :P

  141. 141
    lethargytartare says:

    @jeff:

    It’s a discredit to all to claim that the front lines of that group were not clearly told they would be arrested and ordered not to proceed.

    Again, the vids on the NYT are not from “before the bridge,” they are from long after the marchers entered the roadway. watch this vid and match it up with the NYT clips, and I think you’ll see that they’re lying.

  142. 142

    @lethargytartare:

    You’re just wrong. Look at the bottom video here. There’s a tree there, to the left of the cop making the announcement, before the merging lane. He’s telling people to turn around or risk arrest. The bald guy, or the people in the front few rows could have turned around at that point and told the people behind them.

  143. 143

    @lethargytartare:

    And after you watch the video I just pointed you towards, you’ll notice the traffic “gates” behind and to the left of the cop with the bullhorn. It looks like the same “gates in the upper left corner of your video at the 12 or 13 second mark.

  144. 144
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cain: @Cassidy: Actually, Cain raises a good point. They say you get about 60 seconds with your resume for the employer to decide which pile it goes into. As someone who has done some hiring, I think that’s about right. Sad, but true. Maybe your resume could be revised – could it be your resume and not your experience?

    Here’s the best info I have ever seen on resumes and cover letters.

    http://www.nelnet.com/article......yc.gar.art

    In particular, check out the 6 or 7 links at the bottom of the page.

    edit:
    also check out this page:

    http://www.nelnet.com/resume_s.....c.taa.samp

    There are two items that sound like they might be just what you need.

    Federal & KSAs
    View examples by targeted Federal Agency of written and edited resumes for Federal and KSA positions. View Samples…

    Military Transition
    View examples by purpose of transition of written and edited resumes for military personnel looking to transition to the private sector. View Samples…

  145. 145
    WaterGirl says:

    tried to edit above to add another link and now it’s in moderation.

    resume samples:

    http://www.nelnet.com/resume_s.....c.taa.samp

    and in particular:

    Federal & KSAs
    View examples by targeted Federal Agency of written and edited resumes for Federal and KSA positions. View Samples…

    Military Transition
    View examples by purpose of transition of written and edited resumes for military personnel looking to transition to the private sector. View Samples…

    typing one handed with kitty in lap…

  146. 146
    Evelyn says:

    Thanks SiubhanDuinne for the correction. I haven’t been getting much sleep.

    Also, for all those saying that this movement is disorganized, I think you are so deeply wrong and speaking out of ignorance. Today was Day 10 of OccupyChicago, and I have been there since Day 4, and while it started out as a mess, every day we are tightening up the structure of the assemblies and committees. I am on two committees (Press and Outreach) of the many that we have to deal with things like Food/water, Safety, Police liaison, Tech, Transportation, etc. All the committees are using Group.me, googlegroups, twitter and other things to make sure that EVERYONE is at all times informed. While I would say that there are always going to be a few newcomers who are learning the ropes, everyone here is obsessed with organization, education, and communication.

    I’ve been a reader of Balloon-Juice for two years, and you may recognize me as the person who made all the art that’s in the Balloon-Juice store. At first I was really demoralized with how the commenters on this site were responding to the Occupy movement. But it’s my responsibility to educate you as someone on the ground.

    Also, to those of you who are saying that we are angry, you cannot possibly imagine how patient and respectful all the protesters are towards one another. We always respect speaking order in assemblies, always, and we have simple silent hand gestures in assemblies to indicate agreement, disagreement, or off-topic. We disagree on many many things, but we have civil and open discourses, and never in my life have I seen so many ideas be exchanged by so many different people.

    This movement is not leaderless, it’s a movement of leaders. It’s not about ideology, it’s about ideas. And if you think we’re not doing it right, then JOIN US. We’d LOVE to have you. I bet you there’s an Occupy movement within driving distance of you, and if you go to it, and you have great ideas, patience, and the willingness to collaborate you will be accepted with open arms. Every committee is open to new members and everyone is equal. Believe me, I can say first hand that an individual with initiative can get a heck of a lot done within the movement.

  147. 147
    jpe says:

    @ handsmile: the term is “irrebuttable presumption.” It’s a legal term.

  148. 148
    jpe says:

    @ handsmile again: I do appreciate the grammar policing though, being a member of the auxiliary force myself.

  149. 149
    kay says:

    @Evelyn:

    Also, for all those saying that this movement is disorganized, I think you are so deeply wrong and speaking out of ignorance.

    Hi Evelyn.

    I don’t think I am speaking out of ignorance, because several things are self-evident to me. I think that if juveniles were arrested on the bridge, that’s disorganized, and they should have been protected, by either leaders or other marchers. A juvenile arrest is a fundamentally different thing than an adult arrest, because an arrest/adjudication of a juvenile can have sanctions/repercussions that last longer than an adult misdemeanor arrest. If someone or other is leading them onto a bridge where they then are arrested my question would be “who put them in harm’s way?” I think that’s a fair question.

    If it’s going to be a leaderless movement, I would think people within it have to take care of each other. That includes not putting people who may be unaware of what’s going on up front in harm’s way.

    I tell my juvenile clients “if you call the police, don’t be surprised when the police show up”. If they’re blaring loud music at 3 AM and there’s a (different, unrelated) illegality to be found when the police arrive, the police are going to arrest them. Loud music at 3 AM is “calling the police”.

    Putting a thousand people on a bridge is “calling the police”. When they arrive, they’re going to arrest on any illegality they find. And they did. That’s to be expected, I think, and could have been planned for.

    If the arrests were deliberate, a “tactic”, which is a theory that’s out there (I don’t know and it doesn’t appear that way to me), I think it’s probably important that the people arrested be aware that they’re signing up for that. Don’t you? In terms of taking care of each other?

  150. 150
    numbskull says:

    @Robert:

    I have no sympathy for those people for parading without a permit over a busy bridge.

    Selma or Brooklyn?

    You do see the problem here, right?

  151. 151
    numbskull says:

    @Cassidy:

    Why aren’t they scared?

    If by “they” you mean the powers-that-be, then I suggest that they are not scared because they think the vast majority of the people who took down a country in a month are “conservative” and therefore on the side of the powers-that-be.

    And I don’t think they’re wrong in making this supposition.

  152. 152
    B W Smith says:

    @Valenciennes: Why, yes, I believe I do know how hard it is for an unemployed person to move. When the options before you are to take a job that will move you to another country for a year or more, doing something you had hoped not to do again, and leaving your family behind; a move to another state does not seem so far fetched. I was simply trying to offer suggestions. It is up to Cassidy to decide whether those suggestions work in his case. Moving is not an option for everyone and may be even more difficult in his case because he has children and a wife in school, but I was trying.
    Cassidy, I have checked two Georgia county websites I am familiar with and there are openings for police officers. The counties are Gwinnett County, Georgia and Athens-Clarke County, Georgia. Gwinnett has six openings and it looks like Athens-Clarke County may only have one, but they also have some other public safety positions. I’m not good at linking but you should be able to find them through Google. The pay is not great. So Athens is probably your better choice because the cost of housing is lower and they give a bonus to your pay for military duty. Almost every county in Georgia has a job posting website. I would be happy to help you watch these counties for openings if you post an email address to send links. Again, good luck. Maybe some BJ folks in other states could look at local websites or job posting boards for you, as well.

  153. 153
    Evelyn says:

    Ugh, I wrote this really long response to this and it did not go through for some reason. Here we go again.

    @kay:

    I can speak only as a member of OccupyChicago, but our relationship with the police is one of our top priorities. We have an entire committee dedicated to making sure that at all times our actions are lawful. The amazing lawyers guild has also been working directly with the police and the city to clarify any ordinances, and believe me, we are respectful to the police at all times. It is one of our few rules: If a police officer asks you to do something reasonable, you do it. If he asks you to do something unreasonable, you ask if you can contact one of the people on our police liaison committee.

    In addition, every day, we hand out fliers from the ACLU to the protesters that explain what their rights are and what to do if they are stopped by a police officer. Everyone here is aware that although we are trying our best to make sure that we are being lawful, we cannot account for EVERYTHING, and that there may be arrests. So far, none here. In fact, I don’t have the link to the article, but apparently one of the main sergeants who is our contact at the CPD said we were the most respectful and lawful protest he’d ever seen.

    That being said, as far as NY goes: I wasn’t there. I cannot tell you what happened. What I can tell you is what I heard from the protesters who WERE there. The report I have is that the police were initially blocking the roadway that led on to the bridge. Given the way we handle police, it is my firm belief that if those police officers had held the line, that the protesters would NOT have gone on to the roadway. But from what I am told, with absolutely no pressure from the crowd, the police began to walk up the roadway, and the protesters in the moment read this as an invitation. Perhaps that was foolish, that I will not deny. But from what I hear, many of them though that the police were trying to lead them across the bridge in an effort to get them through faster. Again, I do not know. But once the protesters were ON the bridge, the police behind them threw up barricades and began making arrests.

    If you think that shows deep disorganization on the part of the protesters, well, that’s unfortunate, but this is an extraordinarily vast movement. What I would say that 99% of the time, everything is going smoothly, but that there will be mistakes. We are out there 24/7, and there are hundreds of us, it is to be expected. What I think should be lauded and that many people here are forgetting is how many times we march (twice a day here in Chicago), and there are NO problems. How we are peaceful, and trying to communicate with the police, and how there has been NO incidents in Chicago for instance. There are Occupy movements in over 80 cities worldwide now, and the fact that there have been so FEW arrests really shows how organized, lawful, and respectful this movement is trying to be.

    Also, something that has been completely glossed over is that JP Morgan also donated 4.6 million dollars to the NYPD the other day. I feel very wary of a police force that is deeply indebted to the exact people that this movement is fighting.

    I hope this has been informative, and isn’t just getting lost. I am really open to talking to anyone about this movement and educating them.

  154. 154
    Cassidy says:

    @Cain: Yes…phlebotomist, ER Tech, Medical assistant, etc. A partial problem is my certification level. The Army requires Medics to be EMT Basics, but they won’t certify us any higher at Intermediate or Tactical. I’m not on par with a Paramedic, but I can probably do about 85-90% of Paramedic skills. Credentials-wise, I’m on par with a CNA and Medical Assistant. There are decent paying positions in that arena (9-13/ hr) and would require some overtime, but doable on my part. So, really I’m waiting to hear back on those positions.

    And yes, Linked In, careerbuilder, Indeed, Monster, Craigslist, every surrounding county pushing outward, various defense contractors (LM, BAE, NG, etc.) so on and so forth.

    @WaterGirl: Thank you. I will look into those links tonight and see if I can revise things.

    @B W Smith: Thank you as well. Will be looking ASAP.

  155. 155
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cassidy: Let me know if the resume info turns out to be helpful.

    After seeing the (hopeful) information about police positions in Georgia, I phoned our local police and fire, as well. (We are sister cities in a university town, so there are 3 separate entities: champaign, urbana, university of illinois)

    What I found on-line had positions with a closing date of April 2011, so I phoned. The nice lady at the university police department said they take applications once a year. If that’s the case elsewhere, that might explain why you haven’t had much luck. She gave me a phone number so you could call personnel, and she said something about getting on their list.

    Here’s their number: 217-333-2139

    Also, when I was searching the non-University police departments, a pop-up from Simply Hired came up – all you had to do was enter a name and email address to be notified of “jobs like this” in the area. Not sure if you have ever used them, but it might be worth a try. I entered “police officer” for the job and IL for the state, and there appear to be a ton of openings. See the link below.

    http://www.simplyhired.com/a/j.....ficer/l-il

  156. 156
    WaterGirl says:

    Maybe some BJ folks in other states could look at local websites or job posting boards for you as well.

    Great idea!

    We’ve got parts of Georgia and Illinois covered so far. Balloon juicers – there are plenty of states left if you want to lend a hand to Cassidy.

  157. 157
    kay says:

    @Evelyn:

    I hope this has been informative, and isn’t just getting lost. I am really open to talking to anyone about this movement and educating them.

    Thanks for the response, Evelyn. I know you’re in Chicago and not New York. I saw that Cleveland is getting permits, etc., which is good. As I’ve now said probably fifty times I support the idea behind OWS. I’m with you. You don’t have to persuade me.

    I know it’s a new movement, but to me, they have to take care of their people. It’s that simple. They shouldn’t be relying on police to direct marchers, or not arrest juveniles, and on and on.

    They have to look out for each other, as a first priority. It’s one of the main tenets, right? A duty to each other?

    I don’t think it’s unfixable, or a HUGE unforgivable mistake, but I do think it’s an error that should be recognized and corrected.

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