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Occupado 5 November 2011

Posted by marisacat in California / Pacific Coast, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, Occupy Wall Street, San Francisco, The Battle for New Orleans, Viva La Revolucion!, WAR!.


Occupy Oakland protesters claim a vacant building during a march [Noah Berger/AP]

I think this photo was taken at the “Travellers Aid” building that was reported broken into and, the story goes, an attempt was made to take it over by the protesters…

HOWEVER an alternative narrative has emerged:

It appears it had been occupied by homeless (and the building itself was in fact in foreclosure, tho who had owned it – the city? – and what bank foreclosed, no word) AND cops were entering, undercover of the chaotic night, to roust the homeless and the Occupiers showed up TO DEFEND the little encampment.

Works for me.


And this, a comment from Madman, from the last thread:

#OccupyOakland: video shows journalists, legal observers kettling themselves to seek safety, then they’re arrested


1. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011
marisacat - 5 November 2011

I think that must be the incident in Oakland… And get this, it was a mix of BART cops (Oscar Grant anyone?) and OPD that let him go…media has been showing film of him sitting in his car….

BAD OPTICALS anyone? And in a Mercedes… and film shows him to be an asshole chewing gum.

Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

I think this was a second incident, in DC. This guy was driving a silver Lexus.

marisacat - 5 November 2011

Silver Lexus, white Merc.

The 1% is showing up. Or so it would seem

2. marisacat - 5 November 2011

whoops. BHHM’s you tube did not come out.

3. marisacat - 5 November 2011

I hope OWS gets past being intimidated on Palestine Occupation and the flotilla attemtps…

If they hope to truly engage the ports and the ILWU, at least out here on the WC, they will have to…

snip from an AA post:

[A]pproximately four hours later, however, Occupy Wall Street’s tweet mysteriously disappeared from its home page on Twitter.

The Twitter-sphere was instantly taken aback- “didn’t realize #OWS is non-political!!” remarked one tweeter, while another insisted that “If #OWS can not support #FreedomWaves and #Gaza then they should not compare themselves to #ArabSpring or #Tahrir.” ” (thanks Yasmeen)

4. marisacat - 5 November 2011

Little earthquake… again over in Berkeley, on the Hayward fault. 3.2 on the Richter…

The PTB are on their knees praying for a big one, where they can impose New Orleans template, military “clear and hold” tactics on an American city. Again. This time on the flatlands of Oakland.

5. marisacat - 5 November 2011

yum yum.. reports of a hundred people over at a BOFA in San Rafael (Marin Co) protesting….

I was so entertained how Micheal Moore made a derogatory remark while in Oakland about Walnut Creek (an older very prosperous enclave in the East Bay, but with a high foreclosure rate, I recently found out). WHT BULLSHIT (from MM I mean), they don’t have a day in day out Occupy, but a variation of people have had protests and demonstrations over in WC… INCLUDING the very morning after the big Oakland protest and Strike.

To me it was clear it was in solidarity following an event in which Oakland Occupy would be blasted. But there they were, about 150 middle aged and older Walnut Creek residents… out on the street, protesting a bank.

6. marisacat - 5 November 2011

hmm family and friends of Oscar Grant are holding a rally this evening at Ogawa Sq in … Oakland.

I missed wht anniversary it is… maybe a year since Mehserle was released. Not sure…

marisacat - 5 November 2011

oh it is hte anniversary of the sentencing.. just catching a news update.

7. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

More Arrests In Assembly Gallery…12 Year Old Has Homework Removed By Sargent At Arms

The arrests continued last night while the Wisconsin Assembly debated to virtually end consumer access to the court system and allow people to drive with shotguns in automobile gun racks – you know “JOBS” bills.

People holding pictures of apple pie, Ronald Reagan, Jesus, the American flag and Mother Theresa were all arrested. If that wasn’t ridiculous enough, a 12 year old student doing her civics homework had her notebook removed by the Sargent at Arms.

And yes, he made her cry.

marisacat - 5 November 2011

People holding pictures of apple pie, Ronald Reagan, Jesus, the American flag and Mother Theresa were all arrested

Oh that is inspired.

Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

It’s been a low-level fight going on for weeks now.

marisacat - 5 November 2011

None of this is going to end… it makes it thru the winter… and I think it can and it is set.

Supposedly soon now, after election on Nov 8, everyone thinks that whomever wins the mayor throne will move on SF Occupy. Jsut one more rallying cry.

Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

things are ramping up again here in WI, with the recall Walker petition campaign starting this month.

8. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

“Just shoot me,’ constituent tells Ryan

Poor Paul Ryan just can’t win for losing. After dodging constituents all summer, he breaks down and holds some town hall meetings, and what do they do? Criticize his Grand Plan.

One Kenosha resident tells Ryan that if his Medicare and Social Security plans go through, “you might as well put a gun to my head.”

marisacat - 5 November 2011

Kenosha is right.

9. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

Occupy Oakland’s General Strike Veers Between Violence, Generosity

The march returned to the plaza for a scheduled action at the Port of Oakland, where the mood became lighter and calmer. The black bloc was diluted in a sea of families, union workers, teachers and the supporters of the Oakland Occupation. The plan was to shut down the the port with a march to the port starting at 5 p.m., augmented by eight or nine charter buses arranged for those choosing not to or unable to walk there.

The march to the port was overwhelming, and from the ground, impossible to count. Estimates from the police and Occupy Oakland supporters ranged from 7,000 on the probably-too-small-side to 40,000 on the definitely-too-big-side. More block party than protest, the march was punctuated with dancing and singing, children and pets running underfoot, and even a marching band playing in front of one of the port’s major entrances.

The protestors blocked tractor-trailers from entering or leaving the port, the fifth largest container port in America, for much of the evening. Around 8 p.m., when protestors heard that the next shift had been called off, word went along Maritime Street that the protest should declare victory and return to the occupied plaza. Thousands marched back, clogging the roads from the port to Downtown Oakland.

Trouble with the police started soon after, as some of the more radical elements of Occupy Oakland took over an unoccupied building on 16th Street sometime between 10 and 11 p.m. The building formerly housed the Traveler’s Aid Society of Alameda County, which helped transitional, at-risk people and families. It shut down due to budget cuts.


One man, too lightly clothed for the steadily chilling early morning air, sat off on his own from the chanters, arms crossed, with a dust mask perched on his head. He sat on a window ledge, surrounded by a dangerous looking pile of broken glass, which had fallen when someone broke the window of a local clothing store called Oakollectiv. The store had closed that day to support the general strike. Someone had hung a black cloth over the broken window with duct tape.

He was Chris Lukens, a 28-year-old bartender originally from Providence, RI who now lives in Oakland and works in San Francisco. Lukens has a degree in screenwriting, but said it’s bartending that’s let him ride out much of the economic troubles of the last few years, because, he explained laughing, when times are bad, people always want a drink.

“I got out of work tonight and came down here at about 11:30. I saw this window busted in, of a business I know for a fact is owned by people from Oakland,” Lukens said. “I started talking to the people protecting it.”

The man looking after the window when he arrived was named Adam, and Adam said he’d taken over sentry duty from Mike. Adam was the third person to protect the window in the three hours it had been guarded by the occupiers.

But Adam had to work in the morning.

“He had to go, and I took it up,” said Lukens. “Tomorrow’s my day off.”

He hasn’t been with Occupy Oakland for long.

“I wasn’t that into the Occupy movement, to be honest with you, I’m a little bit of cynic,” said Lukens. “Until they started putting people in the hospital for exercising their free speech, and then it became something I felt like I needed to be a part of.”

Another occupier, Anthony, said he saw the Oakollectiv window broken, and showed me where someone tagged the building with graffiti, right next to where Lukens was sitting.

As protesters scuffled with the tagger and his crew, one of the crew broke the window, according to Anthony.

As for the tagger, “He just wanted his name, that’s what he’s here for, so he can take a picture for his Facebook and say ‘I tagged such and such,’” Anthony said.

Close to 3 a.m., one of the owners of Oakollectiv, alerted either by Lukens’ texts or the building guard, arrived and introduced himself to Lukens, still sitting on the ledge surrounded by shards of glass.

“Thank you so much,” he said to Lukens, shaking his hand.

Lukens plans to propose to the Oakland general assembly that they donate funds to help local businesses replace the broken windows.

“It’s unfair to them that their stuff gets stolen because people want to demonstrate free speech, and a few people have to go ruin it for the rest of them,” Lukens said. “So I’ll be here as long as the cops don’t push me back.”

As I departed around 4 a.m., a middle-aged woman from the occupation had begun cleaning graffiti and paint off windows with rags, sponges, and a spray bottle. A younger man on a bicycle stopped and watched her for a moment, got off his bike, silently grabbed a rag and began to clean the next window over.

10. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

Madison High School Students Walked Out in Solidarity with Oakland and a Global Movement

It’s only today that I am able to comb through the net and read about the actions taken Wednesday November 2nd to stand in solidarity with the occupy protesters of Oakland, California. What follows starts close to home with Madison students but extends all the way to Egypt. I conclude with a look back at the protests both peaceful and not-peaceful in Oakland.

On Wednesday I learned about high school students that had walked out of school that day from a Solidarity Sing Along singer who told me in the Capitol rotunda. She said the students came into the Capitol earlier causing Chief Tubbs to have fits. She said they were probably walking around the square.

I pursued and found the students at the tail end of their time downtown and learned an estimated 70 students walked out of school to the Capitol from East and West High Schools. I suspect they were joined by students from Madison’s Shabazz High as well. Most were milling around the Veteran’s Museum after a speak-out while Occupy Madison members urged them to meet again before today’s Bank Transfer Day. I ran into a couple of the students again today where people rallied outside Chase Bank downtown.

I asked them how old they are. When they said they are 15 and 16-year-olds I felt a mix of excitement for seeing young people in the occupy movement and later some heaviness as I considered that the world that makes people angry enough to march in the streets is the world they are inheriting.

marisacat - 5 November 2011

A couple of weeks ago on a balmy evening I heard some small children go by, maybe 10, 11, 12 soemthing in there… chanting “We are the 99”.

Absolutely delighted me.. whether in this neighborhood they are or they are not..

Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

a new dawning of class consciousness.

11. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

Taibbi – One Last Note on Mike Bloomberg

I’m getting a number of letters, mainly from conservatives and libertarians, who seem to think that my response to Mike Bloomberg’s “It’s not the banks’ fault” rant means I “don’t believe in personal responsibility.”

Apparently, people feel that by explaining how the banks profited from the explosion of subprime home loans, I’m somehow letting the ordinary homeowner who over-borrowed off the hook.

But the question was never, Do ordinary homeowners share any blame for the crisis? The question, as implicitly posed by Bloomberg, was, Is it true that the banks had NO blame for the crisis?

We can all argue about how big of a slice of the blame pie should be doled out to other actors – the irresponsible homeowner, the corrupted ratings agency analyst, the sleeping regulator, the do-gooder liberal congressman, etc. – later on. But what the mayor said, and Wall Street flaks have been saying for years, is that the banks shouldn’t eat any of that pie, and that they only made those loans because they were forced to, by Barney Frank and Franklin Raines and other such liberal meddling kids.

So let’s examine that for a minute.


Mike Bloomberg wants you to believe the banks didn’t want anything to do with those unworthy borrowers. Yet in reality, the banks not only went to every conceivable length to take on the home loans of those subprime borrowers, they actually invented new technology to make clones of those Barney Frank debtors.

And there were thousands upon thousands of those synthetic deals, meaning each and every one of those deadbeat subprime borrowers have been Xeroxed by the banks fifty or a hundred times over, and are flying around the globe to this day as toxic assets.

Nomi Prins pointed out in her book It Takes a Pillage that we could have paid off every subprime loan in America at the start of the crisis for about $1.4 trillion dollars. But the bailouts ended up being four, five, perhaps as much as ten or twelve times that size.

Why? Because we weren’t paying off the underlying loans of those subprime, personal-responsibility-deficient homeowners. We were paying off the banks’ bets on those loans. We were adopting all those clones they made.

Anyway, there’s is a massive gap between making a bad decision with one’s personal finances and committing criminal fraud in billion-dollar amounts. Morally, the two acts are not even in the same universe.

Homeowners who took on those bad loans did so for a variety of reasons. Some were coaxed into adjustable-rate loans when they qualified for fixed-rate loans, for the simple reason that the ARM loan garnered a bigger commission for the seller. Others were told by their brokers that if interest rates went up, or they couldn’t make their payments, they could just sell their homes, or come back to the same broker for a refinance.

Some were flat-out defrauded, like the prison guard in Massachusetts I interviewed who was told he was buying a fixed-rate loan, and only found out (from Goldman subsidiary Litton) that he’d been sold an ARM when rates went up — right around the time his wife developed cancer, incidentally.

And, yes, there were others who were just dumb and irresponsible, and still others who never even intended to live in their homes and simply bought properties with no cash down as a speculative gamble.

But from what I’ve seen, most foreclosures involve ordinary people with jobs who bought houses when the economy was good, but are caught now in the triple death-trap of an underwater home, rising costs of living, and declining wages and opportunity. And as far as personal responsibility goes, those people who bought that home-ownership ticket, if they missed payments, they’re all taking the foreclosure ride right now.

What we have on the other hand, however, is a bunch of financial companies who consciously created huge volumes of bad loans, dumped them on retirees and foreigners and union stiffs, then doubled down on the problem by creating mountains of new liabilities based on those bad loans via synthetic derivatives. Then, when it all blew up, they came to us and asked us to buy the whole pile at full retail prices, clones and all.

Which we did, flooding them with bailout cash. This allowed them to instantly jack their annual bonus pools back up into the $150 billion range while the rest of the country waited out mass unemployment and a foreclosure epidemic.

So these people created giant masses of these defective loans, pumped the global system full of toxic debt, asked for the biggest government handout in history when it all went wrong, then walked away in the end even richer than before, forcing the rest of us to deal with their messes.

It baffles me that people can look at that behavior and still think it’s individuals in foreclosure who need to be lectured about “personal responsibility.”

A lot of people had to make bad decisions for the crisis to happen. People had to buy houses they couldn’t afford. Ratings agencies had to give AAA ratings to junk securities. Regulators had to be asleep at the wheel. The GSEs had to lower their standards and provide billions of dollars of government-backed financing for dicey home loans. Nobody is denying that all of those things played roles in the crisis.

But the main driving factor was the simple fact that banks were able to make trillions of dollars selling defective products. You take away that simple market-driven reality, there’s no bubble and no crash, no matter what people like Michael Bloomberg say. No one is insisting that they take the whole rap — but don’t insult us by trying to say they shouldn’t take any at all.

12. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

Foil the Evil Empire: Today is Bank Transfer Day

At Wells Fargo, my sister walked up to the teller and politely asked to close her account. The teller said, “No problem.” She pulled up her account and saw the balance and told her that due to the amount she had to speak with the branch manager. The branch manager came out. He was probably 30 years old and was very arrogant. He asked my sister why she wanted to close her account and my sister told him she thought Wells Fargo was part of the problem with the economy. He went thru some talking points about why she shouldn’t move her money, but my sister didn’t back down. When he asked her where she was going she told him that she would be banking at the North Carolina State Employees Credit Union. She isn’t a state employee, but anyone can join if you are related to a state employee. It turns out her husband is. Anyway, the bankster told her “You’ll be back. Credit unions can’t provide the services you need.” We’ll see about that. She withdrew over $200k from Wells Fargo.

Next we went to Bank of America. I closed my last account with hardly any questions asked. Of course, I had taken most of my money out so there wasn’t much left to take. My sister on the other hand had a large balance in multiple accounts. They actually refused to cut her a check for the full amounts. They only gave her 1/3 of her money and told her she’d have to come back to withdraw the rest. They claimed they were only allowed to make checks for a certain amount, and that they had no authority to cut additional checks on the same day. Stupid BofA. She had her check in hand and politely told off the branch manager when he told her she had to come back another day or two to withdraw the rest.

At BofA, we weren’t the only ones closing accounts. There was a line of people. Most had small accounts because they weren’t even being challenged, but she actually had to wait in line to speak with a branch manager.

13. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011
14. marisacat - 5 November 2011

omigod… the local evening news, KRON – 4 had film from San Rafael in Marin Co, from Walnut Creek in the East Bay, from in front of a BOFA in the SF Financial district (being protected, so to speak, by bankers in suits and ties, locking arms and looking prett panicked!!) and from SAN RAMON in the East Bay…

Masses of signs, people that I know live in the communities – this is NOT transplanted protest at all…. Women with streaked hair, expensive clothing and sunglasses… saying they join in.. masses of cars going by honking wildly…. middle aged men in good quality shirts and jackets… hats even.

One man said, it’s in the suburbs, “they” better worry.

People are FIGHTING BACK… and the comments were fantastic.

One woman said, You think we are immune out here? We are not. We’ve lost houses, our children are in trouble. We’d like congress to do something But they WON’T.

The signs were great, lots of “Too big and rich to fail” and a lot of “Single payer saves lives”.

Incredible…. wondrful.

Slobby and all of them should worry. I hope they are shitting cow shaped bricks.

marisacat - 5 November 2011

I am trying to find the news vid at KRON 4…. it jsut showed on the Saturday edition of 8pm weekend news….

Blew me away.

I even knew it was happening (Walnut Creek has had severalprotests over te past two weeks) but still it thrilled me.

marisacat - 5 November 2011

I can’t find a written report on all sites, but the Marin Independent Journal ran this on San Rafael protest and Move Yur Money

Don’t miss the last line:

[T]he San Rafael protest was peaceful and without incident, police said. A Bank of America spokesperson did not respond to requests for a comment on the demonstration.

In rural West Marin, some 80 people gathered in front of the Wells Fargo Bank in Point Reyes Station, the only bank in town, for a photo shoot with local photographer Art Rogers.

Plans are to circulate the photo nationally to call attention to a petition signed by more than 200 Wells Fargo customers in West Marin who have pledged to transfer their money to smaller banks in East Marin, even though the nearest ones are 20 miles away.

“There’s nothing else left to do,” Rogers said. “We tried voting.”

OMIGOD — so wonderful.

Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011


15. marisacat - 5 November 2011

Oen of the tipping points imo was Slob and Snob. (aside from tht fucking useless congress)

Just too fucking much.

16. marisacat - 5 November 2011

Oklahoma just (within the past hour) had a 5.7 earthquake, following a cluster of several earlier. This one is bigger tho….

I am hearing “Sparks” as the epicenter.

17. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

The human toll of the U.S. drone campaign

The principal reason so little attention is paid to the constant victims of American violence in the Muslim world is because the U.S. Government refuses to disclose anything about these attacks and media outlets virtually never report on those victims (MSNBC demoted and then fired its then-rising-star Ashleigh Banfield when she returned from Iraq and pointed out that fact in an April, 2003 speech denouncing the “one-sided” coverage of American wars: meaning, the invisibility in U.S. media of America’s civilian victims). It’s easy to cheer for a leader who regularly extinguishes the lives of innocent men, women, teeangers and young children when you can remain blissfully free of hearing about the victims. It’s even easier when the victims all have Muslim-ish names and live in the parts of the Muslim world we’ve been taught to view as a cauldron of sub-human demons. That’s why it’s periodically worth highlighting the actual impact of those drones and the actual people they kill, as the BBC did today:

When tribal elders from the remote Pakistani region of North Waziristan travelled to Islamabad last week to protest against CIA drone strikes, a teenager called Tariq Khan was among them.

A BBC team caught him on camera, sitting near the front of a tribal assembly, or jirga, listening carefully.

Four days later he was dead – killed by one of the drones he was protesting against.

His family told us two missiles hit the 16-year-old on Monday near Miranshah, the main town in North Waziristan. His 12-year-old cousin Wahid was killed alongside him. . . .

After the missile strike on Monday, Pakistani officials said four suspected militants had been killed.

If the strike actually killed two young boys – as appears to be the case – it’s unlikely anyone will ever be held to account. . . .

marisacat - 5 November 2011

Banfield seems to have disappeared from ABC GMA… she had been on occasionally (I don’t catch it very often, but enough to see her)…. not sure where else she has landed.

18. Madman in the Marketplace - 5 November 2011

The Globalization of Protest – Joseph E. Stiglitz

NEW YORK – The protest movement that began in Tunisia in January, subsequently spreading to Egypt, and then to Spain, has now become global, with the protests engulfing Wall Street and cities across America. Globalization and modern technology now enables social movements to transcend borders as rapidly as ideas can. And social protest has found fertile ground everywhere: a sense that the “system” has failed, and the conviction that even in a democracy, the electoral process will not set things right – at least not without strong pressure from the street.

In May, I went to the site of the Tunisian protests; in July, I talked to Spain’s indignados; from there, I went to meet the young Egyptian revolutionaries in Cairo’s Tahrir Square; and, a few weeks ago, I talked with Occupy Wall Street protesters in New York. There is a common theme, expressed by the OWS movement in a simple phrase: “We are the 99%.”

That slogan echoes the title of an article that I recently published, entitled “Of the 1%, for the 1%, and by the 1%,” describing the enormous increase in inequality in the United States: 1% of the population controls more than 40% of the wealth and receives more than 20% of the income. And those in this rarefied stratum often are rewarded so richly not because they have contributed more to society – bonuses and bailouts neatly gutted that justification for inequality – but because they are, to put it bluntly, successful (and sometimes corrupt) rent-seekers.

marisacat - 5 November 2011

Sometimes I wonder jsut what Stiglitz DID at the IMF.

Maybe if I get more irritable I’ll rooot around and see what trickles of truth are about.

I am glad for his writings and so on.. but………………..

Madman in the Marketplace - 6 November 2011

he helped create the mess, then suddenly realized that all of the dire warnings he was accustomed to brushing off were pretty much right. Like so many of them, trying to “fix” what he helped fuck up, it seems to me.

19. marisacat - 5 November 2011

the local news just ran a tough statistic….

Last year, 78% of those out of work (which of course is a fictional number anyway) were receiving UI.

THIS YEAR only 48% are…. (again based on fictional and low numbers)

As congress will soon rent their clothes and sweat blood to decide if they should extend UI in “the worst hit states” which of course leaves out so many people who are beyond the 99 weeks anyway.

20. marisacat - 6 November 2011



……….. 😯 .. 🙄

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