Why the Occupy Movement Will Succeed…..By Jake Olzen, From Nation of Change

The Occupy movement is under attack. It is facing aggressive police action in cities all over the country while arrests continue over the enforcement of mundane laws that prevent the establishment of permanent encampments. Police attacked Occupy Oakland with rubber bullets and tear gas in the wee hours of Tuesday morning; there were at least a hundred arrests. 130 activists with Occupy Chicago were arrested on Saturday during their second attempt at setting up a camp in Grant Park. Atlanta’s Mayor, Kasim Reed, conducting what appears to have been negotiations in bad faith, ordered Occupy Atlanta cleared of Warren Park last night; 52 were arrested. Occupy Orlando has repeatedly been harassed by changing city policy regarding their camp in Senator Elizabeth Johnson Park, forcing them to vacate the park and their belongings between 11pm and 6am. The Occupy movement may not have it easy right now, but they are being noticed!

The course of social change has often been boiled down to poetic mantras-of-sorts. Utah Phillips and the Wobblies—paraphrasing Joe Hill—were found of saying “Don’t Mourn. Organize!” Margaret Mead made it onto the backs of college service trip t-shirts: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” I repeated to a college class last night a quote about nonviolent social change that I remember a teacher telling me: “First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win.” The quote, often attributed to Gandhi, most likely originated with the trade unionist Nicholas Klein, of the Amalgamated Clothing Works of America at their Third Biennial Convention in 1918. As is often the case with such misattributions (including the Mead quote), savvy organizers and activists still recognize the grain of truth such folkloric wisdom has had over the decades; Occupy Wall Street and the Occupy movement are no different.

First, Occupy Wall Street was ignored. The call from Adbusters in July 2011 for 20,000 people to camp out in Wall Street was barely noticed by the mainstream media—if at all. Waging Nonviolence editor Nathan Schneider was one of the few journalists dedicated to reporting on the burgeoning movement, but it wasn’t until well after September 17—the first day of the occupation—that people outside the progressive newswire took notice. Then, Occupy Wall Street was laughed at. The usual suspects dished out the usual slander—including The Daily Show—casting the movement in any number of simplistic, idealistic, and dismissive ways. Whether for entertainment reasons or to discredit its legitimacy, making fun of Occupy Wall Street is good business for the mainstream media.

Now, Occupy Wall Street is being violently resisted. And expect more of it to come, especially if folks keep at it as they try to assert their First Amendment rights to peaceably assemble. Before demands come, before protracted struggles and campaigns over specific political, economic or environmental policies begin, before the Occupy movement succeeds in turning the tide of the corporate state back toward communities and the common good, it needs a home. A place to put down roots and grow the movement. A place to reclaim the commons – and not just in theory but in actual, physically-manifested ways that say: “Hey, we are here to stay. No more business and politics as usual. Now it’s our turn to have self-determination and self-governance. Let the General Assembly begin (spirit fingers up in the air)!”

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As I wrote in my article #OccupyWallStreet: We Make the Road by Walking, this movement is about a new way of being:

#OccupyWallStreet is an experiment in direct democracy and people power that does not have to stop once demands are made and some of them are met. Rather, what #OccupyWallStreet represents is the kind of community we can have in place of Empire.

The crackdown on Occupy movements by mayors and police forces around the country means only one thing: its getting somewhere. The powers that be—and the mayors who represent them—want this movement to go away. And they will not hesitate, as we’ve witnessed, to use violence, arrests, and likely imprisonment, if it gets to that, to make that happen. For the Occupy movement to succeed in making the substantial, lasting change needed, it will need to establish the kind of permanent space it envisions so that the teach-ins, community building, organizing, action-planning and General Assemblies flourish. Meet violence with nonviolence. Respond to police action and arrests with more civil disobedience and vigorous protest via the courts, petitions, sit-ins, and/or walk-outs. As the mainstream media tries to demonize the movement, do more outreach to labor, universities, churches and the ordinary citizens you now represent. As Frederick Douglass said, “Power concedes nothing without a struggle. It never has and it never will.” And then finally – after that struggle – Occupy Wall Street will succeed.

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Occupy Baltimore Issues Statement of Purpose

Statement of Purpose

Submitted by admin on Sat, 10/22/2011 – 9:07pm

Document
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Hello! I’m pleased to announce that we’ve passed a statement of purpose. Here we go!

Through the transformation of this public space, Occupy Baltimore is expressing solidarity with other Occupy Movements throughout the nation and the world who are forcing attention to the issues of political and economic injustice.

Our purpose is to open for all people a lasting, transparent, and honest Democracy organized in a consensus model. Our goals will be defined by that consensus of our General Assembly. We offer back to the people what corporate privilege and political complacency in our nation has taken from them.

Santorum: ‘I’ll die’ to stop same sex marriages…….from: THE RAW STORY

By David Edwards
Friday, October 21, 2011

Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum is deadly serious about stopping gays from getting married.

Earlier this week, the former Pennsylvania senator told Caffeinated Thoughts that he would be willing to “die” in the fight against marriage equality.

“The battle we’re engaged in right now is same sex marriage, ultimately that is the very foundation of our country, the family, what the family structure is going to look like,” Santorum explained. “I’ll die on that hill.”

The candidate later went on to explain that sex between a man and a woman is “special,” and even birth control is “not OK.”

“We’ll repeal Obamacare and get rid any idea that you have to have abortion coverage or contraceptive coverage,” he said. “One of the things that I will talk about that no president has talked about before is I think the dangers of contraception in this country, the sexual liberty idea and many in the Christian faith have said, you know contraception is OK. It’s not OK because it’s a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.”

Santorum continued: “They’re supposed to be within marriage. They are supposed to be for purposes that are, yes, conjugal but also procreative, and that’s the perfect way a sexual union should happen. When we take any part of that out, we diminish the act. If we take one part out, it’s not for the purposes of procreation, it’s not one of the reasons, then you diminish this very special bond between men and women. So, why can’t you take other parts of that out? And then all of the sudden it becomes deconstructed to the point where it’s simply pleasure, and that’s certainly a part of it, and it’s an important part, don’t get me wrong. But there is a lot of things we do for pleasure and this is special and it needs to be seen as special.”

“I know most presidents don’t talk about those things, and maybe people don’t want us to talk about those things. But I think it’s important that you are who you are.”

Watch this video from Caffeinated Thoughts, broadcast Oct. 21, 2011.

******copy and paste******

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2011/10/21/santorum-ill-die-to-stop-same-sex-marriages/?utm_source=Raw Story Daily Update

A Declaration, Petition for the Redress of Grievances and Action Plan- An OWS Working Group

The99PercentDeclaration

Ten Steps To Non-Violent Revolution
A Declaration, Petition for the Redress of Grievances and Action Plan- An OWS Working Group
Resolution for the General Assembly of NYC to Elect an Executive Committee on October 15, 2011
The Steps to Non-Violent Revolution and the Convening of a National General Assembly
Who are we? A Declaration, Petition for the Redress of Grievances and Action Plan- An OWS Working Group

WHEREAS THE FIRST AMENDMENT TO THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION PROVIDES:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

BE IT RESOLVED THAT:

WE, THE NINETY-NINE PERCENT OF THE PEOPLE of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, in order to form a more perfect Union, by, for and of the PEOPLE, shall elect and convene a NATIONAL GENERAL ASSEMBLY beginning on July 4, 2012 in the City Of Philadelphia.

I. Election of Delegates:

The People, consisting of all United States citizens who have reached the age of 18, regardless of party affiliation and voter registration status, shall elect Two Delegates, one male and one female, by direct vote, from each of the existing 435 Congressional Districts to represent the People at the NATIONAL GENERAL ASSEMBLY in Philadelphia convening on July 4, 2012. The office of Delegate shall be open to all United States citizens who have reached the age of 18. Executive Committees, elected by local General Assemblies from all over the United States, shall organize, coordinate and fund this national election by direct democratic voting. The Executive Committees shall operate similarly to the original Committees of Correspondence during the first American Revolution.

II. Meeting of the National General Assembly and Deliberation:

At the NATIONAL GENERAL ASSEMBLY, the 870 Delegates shall set forth, consider and vote upon a PETITION OF GRIEVANCES to be submitted to all members of Congress, The Supreme Court and President and each of the political candidates running in the nationwide Congressional and Presidential election in November 2012.

III. Proposed Petition for the Redress of Grievances:

This PETITION OF GRIEVANCES shall be non-partisan and address the critical issues now confronting the People of the United States and will be deliberated and voted upon by the 870 Delegates in consultation with the 99%.

The final version of the PETITION OF GRIEVANCES voted upon by the Delegates of the National General Assembly MAY or MAY NOT include the following issues:

1. Implementing an immediate ban on all private contributions of money and gifts, to all politicians in federal office, from Individuals, Corporations, Political Action Committees, Super Political Action Committees, Lobbyists, Unions and all other private sources of money to be replaced by the fair and equal public financing of all federal political campaigns. We REJECT the concept that money is equal to free speech because if that were so, then only the wealthiest would have a voice. These actions must be taken because it has become clear that politicians in the United States cannot regulate themselves and have become the exclusive representatives of corporations, unions and the very wealthy who spend vast sums of money on political campaigns to influence the candidates’ decisions and ensure their reelection year after year.

2. The immediate reversal of the outrageous and anti-democratic holding in the “Citizens United” case by the Supreme Court, which equates the payment of money by corporations to politicians with free speech.

3. Prohibiting all public officials and their immediate family members, whether elected or appointed from EVER being employed by any corporation they regulate while in office or holding any stock or shares in any corporation they regulate while in office until a full 5 years after their term is completed.

4. A complete lifetime ban on accepting all gifts, services, money, directly or indirectly, to any elected or appointed officials or their immediate family members, from any person, corporation, union or other entity that the public official was charged to regulate while in office.

5. A complete reformation of the United States Tax Code to require ALL citizens to pay a fair share of a progressive, graduated income tax by eliminating loopholes, unfair tax breaks, exemptions and deductions, subsidies (e.g. oil, gas and farm) and ending all other methods of evading taxes. The current system of taxation favors the wealthiest Americans, many of who pay fewer taxes to the United States Treasury than citizens who earn much less and pay a much higher percentage of income in taxes to the United States Treasury.

6. Medicare for all American citizens adjusted by a means test (i.e. citizens who can afford it will opt-out of Medicare and pay their own health insurance or opt-in and pay a means tested Medicare premium). The Medicaid program, fraught with corruption and fraud, will be eliminated except for the purpose of providing emergency room care to indigent non-citizens who will not be covered by Medicare-for-all.

7. New comprehensive regulations to give the Environmental Protection Agency the power to shut down corporations, businesses or another entity that intentionally damages the environment and/or criminally prosecute individuals who intentionally damage the environment. Immediate adoption of the most recent international protocols to cap carbon emissions and new goals to transition away from fossil fuels to reusable or carbon neutral sources of power as soon as possible.

8. Adoption of an immediate plan to reduce the national debt to a sustainable percentage of GDP by 2020. Reduction of the national debt to be achieved by BOTH a cut in spending to corporations engaged in perpetual war for profit, the “healthcare” industry, the pharmaceutical industry and all other sectors that use the federal budget as their income stream AND a truly progressive income tax code that does not allow the wealthy and corporations to evade taxes through excessive deductions, subsidies and loopholes.

9. Passage of a comprehensive job and job-training bill to employ our citizens in jobs that are available with specialized training and by putting People to work tomorrow by repairing America’s crumbling infrastructure. Establishment of an online international job exchange to match employers with skilled workers or employers willing to train workers in 21st century skills.

10. Student loan debt relief. Our young People and students are more than $830 billion in debt from education loans alone. Payment and interest on these debts should be deferred for periods of unemployment and the principal reduced using a corporate tax surcharge and by extending the age to collect social security from 65 to 70.

11. Immediate passage of the Dream Act and comprehensive immigration and border security reform including offering visas, lawful permanent resident status and citizenship to the world’s brightest People to come and work in our industries and schools.

12. Recalling all military personnel at all non-essential bases and refocusing national defense goals to address threats posed by the geopolitics of the 21st century, terrorism and limiting the large scale deployment of military forces to instances where Congressional approval has been granted to counter the Military Industrial Complex’s goal of perpetual war for profit.

13. Mandating new educational goals to train the American public to perform jobs in a 21st Century economy, particularly in the areas of technology and green energy, taking into consideration the redundancy caused by technology and the inexpensive cost of labor in China, India and other countries and paying our teachers a salary that is competitive with the private sector.

14. Subject to the elimination of corporate tax loopholes and exploited exemptions and deductions stated above, offering tax incentives to businesses to reconstruct the manufacturing capacity of the United States and reinstitution of the Works Progress Administration and Civilian Conservation Corps and other emergency governmental agencies required to create new public works projects to provide jobs to the 46 million People living in poverty, the 9.1% unemployed and 10% underemployed.

15. Implementing immediate legislation to encourage China and our other trading partners to end currency manipulation or impose a consumption tax on goods that those countries export to the United States calculated by comparing the fair market value of the currency to the manipulated valuation.

16. Immediate reenactment of the Glass-Steagall Act and increased regulation of Wall Street and the financial industry by the SEC, FINRA and the other financial regulators, and the commencement of a Justice Department criminal investigations into the Securities and Banking industries practices that led to the collapse of markets, $700 billion bail-out, and financial firm failures in 2007-2008.

17. Adoption of President Clinton’s plan to end the mortgage crisis and instead of the Federal Reserve continuing to lower interest rates for loans to banks who are refusing to loan to small businesses and consumers, the Federal Reserve shall buy all underwater or foreclosed mortgages and refinance the these debt at 1% or less to be managed by the newly established Consumer Protection Agency and (foreclosure task force described below) because 1% or less is the interest rate the Federal Reserve loans to the banks directly who hoard the cash rather than loan it to the People and small businesses.

18. An immediate one year freeze on all foreclosures to be reviewed by an independent foreclosure task force appointed by Congress and the Executive Branch to determine, on a case by case basis, whether foreclosure proceedings should continue based on the circumstances of each homeowner.

19. Subject to the above ban on money and gifts in politics, additional campaign finance reform requiring free air time and public campaign finances to all candidates who obtain sufficient petition signatures and/or votes to participate in the primaries and/or electoral process, shortening the campaign season and allow voting on weekends and holidays. Voting must be accessible to all citizens for democracy to work.

20. An immediate withdrawal of all troops from Iraq and Afghanistan and a substantial increase in the amount of funding needed for veteran job placement and the treatment of the physical and emotional injuries sustained by veterans in these wars. Our veterans are committing suicide at an unprecedented rate and we must help now.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVLED that IF the PETITION OF GRIEVANCES approved by the 870 Delegates of the NATIONAL GENERAL ASSEMBLY in consultation with the PEOPLE, are not acted upon and implemented to the satisfaction of the Delegates of the NATIONAL GENERAL ASSEMBLY after presentment of the PETITION OF GRIEVANCES to the government, said Delegates shall begin to organize a THIRD, COMPLETELY NON-PARTISAN INDEPENDENT POLITICAL PARTY to run candidates for every seat in the mid-term election of 2014.

★THE NINETY-NINE PERCENT★

The GOP’s furious hatred of women grows and grows…..From the Ohio Daily

Submitted by Anastasia Pantsios on Thu, 10/13/2011 – 5:30pm

The vilest member of Congress, Majority Leader Eric Cantor
a sniffy, condescending puke with a brick where his heart should be —
has apparently said that the GOP will not even let the jobs bill come
to a vote on the floor of the House because, you know, they didn’t REALLY
promise to create jobs last year when that was virtually all they campaigned on.
I guess their fingers were crossed.

But you know what they do have time to vote on? This:
http://thinkprogress.org/health/2011/10/12/341070/house-gop-proposes-so-…

That’s right. It’s not enough for these huge-government/let-government-dictate-
your-every-health-care-move-if-you-are-a-woman types that NO tax money is being
used to fund abortions. They want to punish any hospital that may get federal money
for something entirely unrelated if they perform an abortion to SAVE A MOTHER’S LIFE.
Seriously — you have an ectopic pregnancy? Too bad. We’re back to the savage laws of
pre-modern nature. You die, just as if no medical treatment existed. It does,
but these people want to pretend we are a primitive, undeveloped country.

What’s more hilarious is that they dubbed this bill — H.R. 358 — the “Protect Life Act.”
They should call it the “Punish the Slut Act,” because really, isn’t that what this is about? Whose “life” is protected by denying a woman with an ectopic pregnancy an abortion? That doesn’t matter to people like Cantor who feel they should be the ones to make the most intimate
decisions for women.

If these people were truly concerned about “life,” they would have passed the jobs bill,
creating nearly two million jobs — many for parents desperately trying to feed their kids.
But they aren’t. Fetuses are useful tools to them, something they can use to keep women down.
Actual living, breathing children they don’t care about so much.