The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

I see the police are providing an education

by beating protestors, destroying their medical gear, sending riot cops in to stop “serving food without a permit” and throwing protestors camping gear in garbage trucks.

Yes, this is an education.  They are teaching them that the police and elites are their enemies.

I am bitterly amused.

Someone explain to me what will convince them to stop?  What’s the theory, here?

Only thing I can see, on the current terms of engagement, is for the protests to grow so large that the police literally can’t throw them all in jail, because there is no room.  Might set up camps, then, but you can overwhelm them too.  Are enough Americans going to be willing to be arrested for this to work? It’d be great, if so.


Revolution Basics #1: Who cares what you think?


“Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.”


  1. Celsius 233

    We’ve always fought and won wars because we always have had the advantage (“possibly” the Revolutionary War is an exception, maybe not).
    We both know what the *1% (sorry) is capable of, and there is quite literally, no limit.
    {*Tangent: I’m not one of the 99 or any other percent, damn it!}

    So, I agree numbers count and with so many unemployed, one would think the timing is right.
    But; we’ll see…

  2. Formerly T-Bear

    Someone explain to me what will convince them to stop? What’s the theory, here?

    There will be no end of these actions until democracy in the US is destroyed and no memory remains. These elites are willing to destroy the republic to obtain this end. As the political control of government becomes increasingly dysfunctional, greater and greater coercion will be required. Increasing economic destitution will abundantly supply enough bodies willing to fill their authoritarian forces, no one will be allowed to serve near the community they come from, they will perform their “duties” upon strangers targeted as terrorists. It will not end well.

    Only systemic collapse will remove the power base of this elite, nothing else will control them or their agenda. One must know their enemy, their strengths and their weaknesses and make plans accordingly. One must prepare and enable the collapse of the entire system, that is the only way the defeat can be realized. There must be no survivors of the enemy elite, salt spread upon their holdings that they can never prosper again, and their agenda be consigned to the deep. Rabid dogs are never nursed to health in the hope, neither should these enemy elites. But, have great care, not all elite is the enemy, but can become so if maltreated unjustly.

    The theory of power, its use, its abuse, its strengths and its weaknesses, what it can do and what its limits are as well as the biographies of those who have wielded power must become as well known as the sports page and as avidly read. Power is what raised mankind from the beasts, and can return mankind as well, if it is not understood and controlled. Ignore power at your peril.

  3. Compound F

    You and Sterling subscribe to “Japanification.” The Automatic Earth subscribe to massive debt deflation.

    Are your views current?

    How do they interact with debt deflationists?

  4. BDBlue

    The protests will either have to grow incredibly large as you note (and even then some violence is inevitable as the elites are not just going to sit by and permit that to happen, they’re going to extract a cost) or people are going to have to find other ways to inflict pain. A lot of pain could be inflicted on the financial sector, for example, simply by picking a bank and taking it down – if everyone withdrew their money, stopped paying any debts owed to it, etc., then moving on to the next large bank and doing the same thing. But that requires the same kind of organization that gets millions of people out in a park. The upside is that drones, batons and pepper spray are a lot harder to administer to people sitting in their living rooms shredding credit cards and the bills that come with them.

    I’ve always seen the OWS movement as a time for education and as the police crackdown, that’s definitely going to be part of it. But I think, in the long run, it may be helpful in terms of growing the movement, at least it has been so far.

  5. Where? Boston.

    The Boston PD after 9/11 (and probably before) has behaved disgracefully–I know of a number of other incidents. The rationale, invariably, is anti-terrorism. I wonder if it will be invoked this time.

    We may hope that this is the incident that finally leads Boston to restrain their police department. It’s reported the police are attacking vets: that’s not likely to go over real well with the public.

  6. StewartM

    Ian Welsh:

    Someone explain to me what will convince them to stop? What’s the theory, here?

    The only downside for the elites is that police states are inefficient states. Despite all the praise heaped on the military and police by the MSM, Eisenhower’s warning that every dollar spent on the military (and police) is ideally and ultimately a waste is just as true now as it was 50 years ago.

    However, while that is true, I also ascribe to the idea that the elites aren’t too bright, so it also probably won’t stop until they can’t do it anymore, i.e., collapse.


  7. BDBlue

    I think this will also be an education, not only for the protestors, but for police. Some of whom will learn to crack down harder, but there is also the possibility of splitting the police. It’s not at all clear to me that police departments everywhere are going to unanimously be okay with cracking the heads of veterans, for example. We saw the police split to some extent in Wisconsin. There have been rumors of tension in New York. The elite have tried to prevent this by largely excluding police from the union busting measures they pass, but how many police have their own credit card problems or have kids with student debt or are married to teachers getting screwed out of their jobs?

    It seems what we’re really going to learn is the truth behind the Chinese curse about living in interesting times. In the next decade or two, just about everyone is going to learn a lot and be tested.

  8. Benedict@Large

    The police have been developing these techniques by using them on the homeless for years. Most everyone thought that was a good idea.

    First they came for …

  9. soullite

    I only hope that enough ‘protesters’ get the hint that they realize that you cannot get economic change from peaceful protests – nobody ever has and nobody ever will. Only social change has ever been accomplished through peaceful protest in this country.

    Maybe then we can switch over to killing the elite and their families in their beds. That way, when they react (and they will), it will look to most people like they have gone totally apeshit over a couple of random murders and people will not be anywhere near as willing to put up with the resulting security theatre as they would if there was an actual battle in the street.

  10. zot23

    Probably not enough yet, but were there enough protesters willing to camp out long term in NYC this time last year? It’s growing (and will continue to grow as inequality remains.) The other question to ask is: what do the protesters have left to lose? If you have no job, mo prospects, no health care, no car, no property, then is jail so bad an alternative? With less to lose, more will continue to show up IMO.

  11. I think the strategy is for the 1% to set the police against any protesters and protesters against police early on, so that when things really do get serious the police will have painted themselves into a corner where they can’t change sides or be impartial. I think the whole “white shirts” phenomenon is part of that. The police will get paid handsomely in overtime and they will not be asked to share the sacrifices the rest of us to with regards to pay cuts and pension cuts, etc. All of their incentives will be to do the bidding of the 1%, and when the protest mood turns anti-cop, they will be emotionally invested in beating down protests. Whether the whiteshirts are actually inciting and committing the violence disproportionately or not, notice how the protesters are trying to win the blue shirts to their side. I guess it’s smart of them, but money talks louder than homemade placards. Better than nothing.

  12. “Only thing I can see, on the current terms of engagement, is for the protests to grow so large that the police literally can’t throw them all in jail, because there is no room. ”

    That was a common IWW tactic. Whether it would work now is of course an open question.

  13. BDBlue: The authorities split in Egypt, too. The Army did not fire, and the baltigaya weren’t strong enough, or smart enough. You can argue the outcome in Egypt, but as far as splitting, we know it’s possible because it’s been done.

    It was pretty cold in Madison, too, IIRC. I imagine Bloomberg is counting on that; hopefully, he’ll be wrong.

  14. There will be no end of these actions until democracy in the US is destroyed and no memory remains.

    I think these actions are direct evidence that all that is left is a memory, they would not happen if democracy existed in the US. Some of us are also considering the strange and paradoxical thought that perhaps that is all that it has ever been, a memory.

    Carrot and stick analogies always seem to misrepresent carrots as bait, they aren’t They are optical illusions, always just out of reach, always just toward the horizon.

  15. Z

    An irony of the Boston police roughing up protesters is just days before some protesters were publicly praising the police for protecting them:

    But several of the speakers wanted to comment on how polite and supportive the Boston police had been.

    I just want to say . . . [I just want to say . . .]
    That the Boston police have done . . . [That the Boston police have done . . .]
    A much better job of protecting us . . . [A much better job of protecting us. . . ]
    Than the NYPD. . . . [Than the NYPD] — huge cheers and applause!

    These speeches were happening in front of the the Federal Reserve Bank building, and a ring of police was standing between the crowd and main entry doors to the building. There were about a dozen police in front, and I spotted several others standing around elsewhere, though not enough to suggest anyone was expecting any trouble. The officers standing in front didn’t react when the crowd complimented and cheered them.

    Boston’s Mayor Menino, an old line Democrat in a Democratic town, has been generally supportive, and the police have been cooperative, while the Occupiers have given them no cause to be otherwise.

    I don’t know what the crowd was actually thinking when they cheered the police, but I’m fairly certain that the police are there at least in part because the authorities and property owners believe the building entrance and its occupants may at some point need to be protected if something unexpected happens — think about the D.C. provocateur at the Air and Space Museum. This was Saturday, so almost no one was going in/out the Fed’s front doors. Higher level execs and employees could have been using a parking entrance underneath.

    But it was an interesting disconnect between why the police were probably there and the crowd’s spoken view that the police were there to protect them. It reminded me of the Egyptians in Tahir Square thinking the army was there to protect them, and they did for a while, but those who led the army had their own agenda.

    The establishment’s muscle’s overreach is a necessary step in the process IMO. Now the next necessary step is that the size of the protest in Boston gets much bigger to show our rulers that force isn’t going to work, making them up the ante on the amount of police force that they are willing to use or come to the conclusion that force isn’t going to serve their purposes. My guess would be that they are not going to give up on force so easily.

    This will also put pressure on the mayor of Boston to take a clearer stand on the matter and place him in a pinch point.


  16. For some background on Raven’s point about the Boston PD (and Massachusetts law enforcement generally), see here and here, among other places. Of course, there’s also the case of Prof. Henry Louis Gates, the five foot tall guy who needs a cane and looks to be just a few years from retirement, and yet was supposed to be a danger to the public.

    Were I a resident of Boston, I suspect I’d be as concerned about the police department’s effect on public safety as I was about the criminals’.

  17. Spot on. Not only an education, but backfiring PR blunders. Last night there was a brief collective panic with hyperbolic concerns of a national crackdown – the “big one” – that only served this morning’s hangover with some relief, and I’m certain that it will stiffen the spines of the occupiers of those who are weighing joining.

    StewartM’s point about the expense of police states is also important. Add to that the collective economics of these occupiers – they’re still dependent somewhat on traditional finance for donations, etc., but that may evolve.

    Collective resentment against debt may fortify some who yet hold moral reserve against forfeit. If this number continues to grow…

    The nascent call for November 5 to withdraw funds from major banks and move them into local credit unions – if that goes viral it will loosen another leg of the 1% stool. When the greed class begins to decide it is cheaper to escape than to pay for oppression, that’s the tipping point.

    IMO, there are quite a few debilitating options that fall short of overt violence – because the above is quite violent, actually, and very hard to strike back at.

  18. slightly off topic, Stop the Machine protesters arrested at the Hart building

  19. Students of Crane Brinton know that the ineffective use of violence is a sure sign of a collapsing regime.

  20. @dcblogger:

    Students of Crane Brinton know that the ineffective use of violence is a sure sign of a collapsing regime.


  21. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Updated prediction. The smack down is coming and it’s coming hard and fast. The streets and parks will be cleared by Halloween.

  22. Not in DC, Obama dare not have such a confrontation go out on every newscast in the world. He will hope the cold weather will drive the protestors away.

  23. Ian Welsh

    Stirling and I believe that Japanification was the elites plan. We also both believe it wouldn’t work, it’s not a stable solution set for the US.

    I should add, as an aside, that I find the way the elites are acting incredibly stupid. If I were them and didn’t want fundamental changes, I’d pat the protestors on the head, tell the cops to be nice to them, and even go say sympathetic things to them. Smile, nod, be supportive of the encampments themselves, but don’t make any changes to how business is actually done. Let winter and disillusionment deal with them. Give them nothing to rally against.

    They are incompetent even at this.

  24. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Does anyone seriously believe that Obama cares if a confrontation between DC police and protesters went out on every newscast? He’s calculating right now on the odds the he would garner more support from dipshit centrists for cracking down on the dirty fucking hippies than not. He’s totally and completely morally bankrupt.

  25. Yes, because at this point even the American news media would cover it. But even if they did not, Al Jazeera, Russia Today, The Guardian, The Independent, The Toronto Star, and many other foreign media outlets would cover it. The National Press Building is right around the corner from Freedom Plaza, so it would be too easy.

    And certainly it would be pasted across YouTube, and footage like that would get serious page views, much bigger than the original pepper spray incident. That kind of imagery would ruin whatever remains of Obama’s relationship with his based. And since Freedom Plaza and McPhearson Square are both under the jurisdiction of the Park Police, there is no way Obama could deny responsibility. Thus the current strategy of labeling them anarchists and hope the winter freezes them out.

    It is not just a coincidence that occupations across the country were attacked by police last night. Clearly it was coordinated, and clearly Obama wants to shut down the regional protests and wait out the NYC and DC protests. Or so say I.

  26. From what I’ve seen of the arrests in Sacramento — night after night — it’s pretty obvious the polizei are taking full advantage of the opportunity to engage in a training exercise for the time when Civil Disturbance once more takes center stage.

    The arrests themselves are Agit-Prop Theater, very carefully choreographed, elaborately staged, and quite effective on both sides of the authority divide. Sending seventy cops in light riot gear to arrest 14 non-resisting demonstrators is a bit much.

    The cops are bored now, so the arrests might stop after tonight. Then again, they might not. This can go on indefinitely if they want. And if they get brutal, the demonstrations will just get bigger. The demonstrators are not afraid.

    As for those camps, you know they already exist. No, I’m not talking about the FEMA camps, silly. Right now they’re holding around 400,000 illegales, but they can always either be released or crammed in tighter to make room for the rounded-up, if it comes to that. There are all kinds of alternative holding facilities all over the country. They could arrest millions more and not use up all the available space. This is a prison nation. Don’t forget.

    As for how this could devolve if the oligarchy panics, I get visions of Tienanmen when I particularly want to scare myself. Don’t think it wouldn’t happen. Oh yes it would, and it could happen just about anywhere there was a large enough gathering. Think about how that happened, too. It was an occupation, a festive “sitting” demonstration, very much as Naomi Wolf keeps ordering the Americans to do, DON’T MARCH!!! SIT!!! LINK ARMS!!! SING!!!

    That’s what they did in Beijing, and they got massacred — eventually. What led to the massacre? The bloodthirsty politburo? To some extent, sure. They were tired of the fuss and the embarrassment and had ordered martial law and the square cleard. But the proximate cause was the brutal murder of several People’s Army troops by some element in the crowd. Who they were, who knows? I’ve always thought they were provocateurs. But within hours, the square was littered with the bodies and blood of the dead and wounded, and the survivors were running for their lives.

    That scenario could very easily happen here if the demonstrations don’t end by a date certain.

    I doubt, however, that what’s been put in motion by the Occupations would end. It would just become… more sophisticated.

  27. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Obama has no “relationship with his base”. That ship has sailed. He also has no compunction about killing American citizens.

  28. Obama only kills Americans off stage. With the whole world watching he is a touch more inhibited.

  29. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Tell that to Troy Davis.

  30. Tom Hickey

    As much as I dislike seeing violence of any sort from any direction — especially the power of the state being used to suppress dissent by its citizenry — what is happening in many places in the US and around the world is a necessary step in the process of radicalization.

    I say this from experience, because I first saw violence in war 45 years ago and then police violence as an anti-war protestor when I got out of the military. This permanently radicalized me by searing deep impressions into my neurons — me and a lot of others. I was fortunate never to have been beaten up or directly tear gassed. (They didn’t have pepper spray then.) But I came close enough and assisted some of the victims, so I am not about to forget it.

    The state has a monopoly on violence, and the state is ruled by people of property who believe that the sole purposes of the state are to facilitate their privatizing the commons and expropriating it as their property, as well as protecting the security of their persons and property. Oh, and to control “the little people,” who they consider the eaters and themselves the producers. They use the levers of power and instruments of violence to maintain and extend their control.

    But for violence to work, they have to be willing to use it to the fullest extent. That is not always possible in civilized society. A people that believes itself to be free cannot be suppressed forever without a totalitarian government. For this reason protest can work where elites don’t rule as despots, and even despotic totalitarian governments eventually fall due to internal rot.

    I would judge that we are now somewhere between 1964 , with the beginning of the Free Speech Movement (Mario Savio on the steps of Sproul Hall at Berkeley) and 1967, the beginning of the big anti-war and countercultural protests in Washington, DC that began the radicalization process. This is the preliminary round, characterized by street education and testing, and using street theater to get the word out and draw more people into the ring.

    What the movement needs now is staying power. We have to be willing to bet that TPTB are not willing to take the US over the cliff into totalitarianism, and therefore, that state violence will ultimately not only fail but work in the favor of the growing movement.

    Forty five years ago, there were almost no communications other than word of mouth and the alternative press, and the protests were largely either ignored or misrepresented in the mainstream media. Today, there is the internet, social media, networking, and a global media. Huge difference.

  31. Everythings Jake

    Seems so damned simple.

    Problems same (or deeply similar to those faced by the country during The Depression), government should dust off the old plans (Pecora Commission, New Deal, etc.) and implement those.

    For the people, simple but hard – they should throw down in the way those in the early 20th century did – those actions that terrified the early 20th century elite and brought the government to implement the plans they did. Those actions – militant unionism, general strikes, etc. – pose great risk, but what other choice?

    Sigh. Seems self-evident when I read this blog too. I suppose we’ll have to hit bottom for people to grasp that they don’t have to re-invent the wheel – so there’s nothing to do but act where you can and be witness to the long, slow strangulation.

  32. someofparts

    When our ancestors went on strike I assume that posed a threat to the dominant parasites because American industry was the source of their wealth. Not true now, so where’s the leverage? For that matter, what is the difference between these occupations and the homeless? Haven’t there been millions of homeless people for decades that nobody cares about even now?

  33. Celsius 233

    Formerly T-Bear PERMALINK
    October 11, 2011

    Ignore power at your peril.
    Classic! Pretty much an archetypal statement; guilty as identified.
    And now the fight is epic instead of difficult.

  34. They sent the Army to gun down bonus marchers in DC, back in the day.

    That great American hero, Douglas MacArthur, was glad to lead the charge.

  35. john higgins

    your commercial ambition is showing through your informative editorial. don’t be an instigator, it makes you look like a businessman trying to max a commission. anderson cooper, et al, are already promoting various disasters around the world just so they can report on same….stay above it.

  36. @john higgins:

    your commercial ambition is showing through your informative editorial.

    Oh, that is just so unfair. We all know Ian better than that.

  37. Ian Welsh

    Don’t be an idiot, blogging is a cost to me, not something I make money from. Even if it wasn’t, there’s always something to write on, only hacks think otherwise.

    Also, you’re confused about why I blog. It isn’t “to report”. I am not a reporter and I have never claimed to be one.

  38. someofparts

    yeah – Ian’s “commercial ambition” – sorry, made me spit coffee on the monitor

  39. Celsius 233

    Actually pissed me off…

  40. your commercial ambition is showing through your informative editorial.

    To do what, sell new camping gear to the protesters???

  41. To do what, sell new camping gear to the protesters???

    best response yet

  42. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Time’s up. The occupation ends tomorrow.

  43. Cloud


    Could well be you’re right. Maybe not though.

    I hope no one gets hurt unnecessarily.

  44. jcapan

    Is there no alternative spot for them to use? No public parks nearby?

  45. polyblog

    If the police don’t come to our side (and I don’t believe most will) it will be a tough go. Violence will be inevitable, and the left will be blamed. Lefties will be harmed as well as “held responsible.” The 1% won’t be held to the same standard. The question is: will peeps go home or stay the course. I don’t think anyone knows at this point. I’m 63 with chronic back pain. I’m in upstate NY and plan to get down to Wall Street as soon as I can. But I don’t know how many others are willing to leave their homes and problems to get down there. I ‘m not blaming here; peeps I know are stressed to the limit. Some take action; others fold. It’s the long run that counts. Both in financial planing and political actions. I hope we all do whatever we can to support this protest and each other, even if we can’t actually get to a protest site.

  46. eliza black

    Do we have the courage? It’s affecting my life, and my relationships. For me, so far, yes.

  47. Celsius 233

    The moment of truth is soon to be upon us; will the “cleaning ploy” work?
    We’re going to learn something very important, very soon; no matter how this turns out, no?

  48. Ian Welsh

    Core occupiers are about 400. They know when the cops are moving in, so the question is how many people they can get to show up and be arrested. 2,000 would be a marginal victory, 10K would be what they need to mess things up, anything more is gravy.

    Eventually they’re going to need tens of th0usands of people who are willing to get arrested on any given day, and a couple million throughout the country. Baby steps.

  49. Celsius 233

    IW – “Baby steps.”


  50. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Bloomberg blinked. They’ll still clear the park by the end of the month.

  51. @Nostradamus, Jr. – you need a new handle, looks like. (teasing) 🙂

  52. Re: Police by Police Force

    It’s the Ratchet Effect.

    And part of it is psyops.

    They’re still very clumsy at it (my guess, very many conflicting commands from the top and more and more resistant field officers), but the extraordinary high spirits I witnessed on the Livestream in New York overnight doesn’t leave much room for considering the other incidents where the Occupations were raided, routed, or evicted. Boston and Des Moines, for example, two/three nights before; Denver, Seattle, Austin, San Diego (and probably others) last night and this morning.

    It’s great that OccupyWallStreet had a victory; but the ratchet is tightening all over in what looks like a very sloppy plan, poorly executed, to shut down the Occupation movement, not just the Occupations themselves. They’re doing it through disruptive tactics inside and outside the Occupations combined with intense official pressure to… clean up and become a People’s Lobby. Something nice like that, you know, something the PTB can understand and work with. You see.

    Since it is such a dispersed movement, it will be interesting to see if any of the Occupations take the bait. “Work with us. Tell us what you want. We’re you’re friends. And Maintenance really does have to clean up.”

  53. hahacharadeyouare

    @Nostradamus Jr.

    Nostradamus was a fraud. He just wrote some vague predictions that can be stretched to predict practically anything. Anyone who would name themselves after such an idiot fraud seriously needs to get a soul and a clue.

  54. Celsius 233

    hahacharadeyouare PERMALINK
    October 14, 2011
    @Nostradamus Jr.
    A bit snarky for a first post, no?
    Many website out there for that; try
    We tend towards civility here, IME.
    Have you something constructive to offer

  55. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Judging from some of NYC confrontation videos, police patience looks to be wearing thin. They won’t put up with this much longer. Today’s non-action was a feint on the part of the authorities. The end of the occupation is coming and it will be swift and brutal.

  56. From Dennis Trainor, 2 videos:

    And another video, from yesterday’s NYT:

    A video posted to YouTube appears to show an officer on a motorcycle, after running over the man’s leg, leaving his motorcycle parked on the man’s leg to go off to pursue protesters while the man writhes in pain.

    Another video, on the Local East Village, appears to show the man being dragged away from the motorcycle by the police and arrested moments later.

    The man, Ari Douglas, is a volunteer legal observer for the guild, which has been providing legal aid to the protesters. Susan Howard, the coordinator for the guild in New York City, said she believed that Mr. Douglas was being treated at Bellevue Hospital Center. The police did not immediately respond to a phone call and e-mail seeking comment on the incident.

    They messed with the wrong dude. Can you say “major lawsuit”?

  57. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Good luck with this…

  58. As soon as you resort to violence it’s an admission that you have lost the argument, isn’t it? So while it sucks getting beaten and run over by motorcycles, as long as it happens you’re winning.


  59. ks


    The slow moving scooter incident is very dubious. Very bad acting on the dude’s part. The local press here have been calling it into question:

    “The Daily News quoted one of its photographers, Joseph Marino, as saying that the scooter “definitely hit” Mr. Douglas but did not run him over. “I saw him sticking his legs under the bike to make it appear he was run over,” Mr. Marino said. Mr. Browne said he was also told by The Associated Press that one of its photographers witnessed Mr. Douglas deliberately putting his feet under the scooter.”

  60. Nostradamus, Jr.

    “When in Rome…”

  61. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Potential tipping point…

  62. Did you see what’s been going on today? Look at this timeline. Arrests left and right, all over the city. Including customers — indistinguishable from protesters — at a Citibank:

  63. Lisa,

    Livestream is my friend. I saw the incident(s) at the CitiBank as they were going down. I wonder what kind of education that was supposed to be?

    That the NYPD will protect the banks from customers who want to withdraw their funds and close their accounts? And they will arrest anyone who steps off the sidewalk?

    Sheesh. “The whole world’s watching!”

    Right now the police in Chicago are ordering the clearance of the Occupation from a site in Grant Park I seem to remember seeing on the teevee in 1968; something about a “police riot?” Some political convention or other? “The whole world’s watching!!!”

    Nobody’s leaving. They’re singing “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

  64. Z

    Chicago should be an epicenter of protest. Their mayor is a high living lowlife that has a ton to do with where we are right now.


  65. Pause for humor. This is frickin’ hilarious:

    A Letter from Goldman Sachs
    Concerning Occupy Wall Street

    NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report)– The following is a letter released today by Lloyd Blankfein, the chairman of banking giant Goldman Sachs:

    Dear Investor:

    Up until now, Goldman Sachs has been silent on the subject of the protest movement known as Occupy Wall Street. That does not mean, however, that it has not been very much on our minds. As thousands have gathered in Lower Manhattan, passionately expressing their deep discontent with the status quo, we have taken note of these protests. And we have asked ourselves this question:

    How can we make money off them?

    The answer is the newly launched Goldman Sachs Global Rage Fund, whose investment objective is to monetize the Occupy Wall Street protests as they spread around the world. At Goldman, we recognize that the capitalist system as we know it is circling the drain – but there’s plenty of money to be made on the way down.

    The Rage Fund will seek out opportunities to invest in products that are poised to benefit from the spreading protests, from police batons and barricades to stun guns and forehead bandages. Furthermore, as clashes between police and protesters turn ever more violent, we are making significant bets on companies that manufacture replacements for broken windows and overturned cars, as well as the raw materials necessary for the construction and incineration of effigies.

    It would be tempting, at a time like this, to say “Let them eat cake.” But at Goldman, we are actively seeking to corner the market in cake futures. We project that through our aggressive market manipulation, the price of a piece of cake will quadruple by the end of 2011.

    Please contact your Goldman representative for a full prospectus. As the world descends into a Darwinian free-for-all, the Goldman Sachs Rage Fund is a great way to tell the protesters, “Occupy this.” We haven’t felt so good about something we’ve sold since our souls.


    Lloyd Blankfein
    Chairman, Goldman Sachs

  66. Nostradamus, Jr.

    Rednecks vs. Hippies. A made for TV event marketers dream of…

  67. Albertde

    One of the people commenting here, Lisa Simeone, just got fired from a local NPR station. A blog post is here:

  68. Nostradamus, Jr.


    Asked whether MTV had issued topical casting calls for other sociopolitical movements, specifically the tea party protests, Alpert said that Bunin/Murray had chosen to focus on the Occupy Wall Street protests because it appeared to have a high degree of youthful support (although, as we’ve seen from the first few demographic studies of the movement and its supporters, that is not the whole picture).

  69. Terrible news about Lisa. May her prospects brighten specifically as a consequence of this nonsense.

  70. Nostradamus, Jr.


    Before he collects checks from Latino donors at the Griffith-Banderas home on the evening of Oct. 24, President Obama will drop in on an afternoon soiree at the home of “Hitch” producer James Lassiter, the Hollywood Reporter reports. That event, also in the Hancock Park area, will be co-hosted by Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith, Lassiter, Troy Carter (Lady Gaga’s manager) and his wife, Rebecca; and Def Jam senior vice president Jay Brown and his wife, Kawanna, head of Magic Johnson Enterprises. It’s a $35,800-per-couple dinner where the president will work the room, table by table.

  71. Hoarseface

    You sound like you’re getting a little pissed about the discussions in the comments section. I can understand that you’re frustrated with the nature of some of the conversation, certain arguments, etc… but part of me feels that’s the nature of the role you’ve chosen; anyone arguing a point outside the MSM-accepted frame of reference & debate will be challenged, and the only antidote I can see is self-inflicted marginalization to the point of preaching to a choir. At least you’ve got them talking and debating. Try to see it as a net positive – you’ve got a pretty intelligent readership, maybe you can offer them some guidance or perspective – something healthy. Anyway, you don’t have to defend yourself in the comments if you don’t want to: what you choose to respond to is up to you. Ignore them completely if you want.

    I say this as a regular reader who generally agrees with your worldview and looks forward to new posts. I wouldn’t want to see you to get jaded with the medium, or feel that your efforts here aren’t worthwhile.

  72. Celsius 233

    Albertde PERMALINK
    October 20, 2011
    One of the people commenting here, Lisa Simeone, just got fired from a local NPR station.
    Hopefully not a major bummer for Lisa.
    NPR basically lost me in 1994 with a very fascist like expose on drugs and enforcement up to and including the on air ID’s of wanted, alleged, criminals.
    Reminded me of the chase for Montag in Fahrenheit 451.
    The best of luck to Lisa…

  73. StewartM

    What Celsius 233 said. NPR and PBS, when fully government funded and when they didn’t have to beg rich contributors for money, were independent and excellent sources of news. They also were willing to air music, arts, and documentary that risked pissing their audiences off (which is a good thing). Now, very little of that happens and shows like NOVA air “fluff” documentaries telling us what a wonder of technology US aircraft carriers are. (I can watch the Military Channel if I want rightwing gung-ho tripe).

    Lisa, I fired off an angry email to NPR in your defense and support. I know it probably won’t do much good, but here’s hoping that something good comes out of it. Wish you luck.


  74. BDBlue

    What everyone else said about Lisa and NPR. I wish I could say I was surprised by NPR, but they’ve got to be so reactionary these days, at least at a national level, it’s hard to be surprised by anything they do. I’ll be sending a letter, hope it helps.

  75. StewartM

    Lisa Simeone:

    Pause for humor. This is frickin’ hilarious:

    A Letter from Goldman Sachs
    Concerning Occupy Wall Street

    Seriously. It occurred to me the other morning that if the elites really wanted to emasculate OWS, what they would do would be to embrace it. Have their politicians salute it. Have celebrities show up and “do the tent city thing” for a day or two to interviews by Geraldo and Oprah. Have multi-nationals sell OWS Tees and mugs. Have comedians tell jokes about it.

    By embracing it and commercializing it, they would trivialize it. Make it into another fad, 2011’s pet rock or Rubik’s Cube.

    The elites thundering against it, calling the OWS’sters “mobs” and trying to ham-handedly shut it down is actually counterproductive to their ends and good for us. I think a lot of Americans are beginning to believe that if bankers and many politicians and talking heads hate it that much, there must be something good about it.


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