6 Ways to Get Ready for the May 1st GENERAL STRIKE
Posted 11 years ago on March 11, 2012, 7:57 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Yesterday, 60,000 marched on Madison to mark the one-year anniversary of the passage of Governor Scott Walker's drastic dismantling of collective bargaining rights for public employees. Last year, Walker's attacks on labor rights sparked massive protests that saw hundreds of thousands occupy the Wisconsin capital building. Their actions prefigured Occupy Wall Street and inspired countless others to take a stand against economic inequality, political injustice, and the tyranny of the 1% enforced through politicians and banksters alike.
This is just one example that people across the globe are actively resisting attacks on the 99%. This year has already seen the largest-ever strike on record in India, hundreds of thousands marching for democracy in Bahrain, general strikes in Montreal and Spain where students once again occupied public space in protest of the austerity measures and spending cuts being enforced by the European banking elite, massive uprisings in the streets of Moscow, and more. Even in the United States, the movement grows. The corporate media claims that Occupy's strength is waning, but they are merely in denial. During the coldest months of this year, the United States has already seen more revolutionary momentum than it has in decades.
This winter, we refocused our energies on fostering ties with local communities, saving homes from corrupt banks and jobs from greedy corporations, and building and expanding our horizontal infrastructure. This #GlobalSpring, we will take the streets again. On May 1st, Occupy Wall Street has called for a General Strike. We are calling on everyone who supports the cause of economic justice and true democracy to take part: No Work, No School, No Housework, No Shopping, No Banking - and most importantly, TAKE THE STREETS!
We are getting ready. Planning is already underway in dozens of cities. Labor organizers, immigrants’ rights groups, artists, Occupiers, faith leaders, and more have all joined in the discussion to get ready. Now, all we need is you. Keep reading to find out how you can get involved!
May 1st, also known as International Workers' Day, is the annual commemoration of the 1886 Haymarket Massacre in Chicago, when Chicago police fired on workers during a General Strike for the eight-hour workday. In many countries, May 1st is observed as a holiday. But in the United States, despite the eventual success of the eight-hour-workday campaign, the holiday is not officially recognized. In spite of this, May Day is already a powerful date in the U.S. In 2006, immigrant's rights groups took to the streets in unprecedented numbers in a national "Day Without An Immigrant" - a general strike aimed at proving the economic power of immigrants in the U.S. At least one million people marched in Chicago and Los Angeles alone. Hundreds of thousands more marched throughout cities across the U.S.
Now, in response to call-outs from Occupy Los Angeles, Occupy Chicago, Occupy Oakland, and other General Assemblies and affinity groups, the Occupy Movement is preparing to mobilize a General Strike this May 1st in solidarity with struggles already underway to defend the rights of workers, immigrants, and other communities who are resisting oppression. Dozens of Occupations in cities and towns throughout the United States, Canada, and Australia have already endorsed May Day. Here is just a taste of events in the works for New York City:
- 8am-4pm: Midtown action staging zone in Bryant Park.
- Disruptive actions in midtown all day! Hit the 1% where they live and prevent them from getting to work. Let's make this a Day Without the 1%, as well!
- Family friendly, free food, a really, REALLY free market, skillshares, workshops, lectures, art, fun and more!
- 4pm: March to Union Square for solidarity march
- 5:30pm: Solidarity march from Union Square to Wall St.
- 7pm: March to staging area for evening actions
And this is just the beginning. To quote the Confederación Nacional del Trabajo, a major Spanish union, who recently called for a national General Strike in Spain on March 29th to protest labor reforms:
For the CNT, the strike on March 29 must be only the beginning of a growing and sustained process of mobilization, one which includes the entire working class and the sectors that are most disadvantaged and affected by the capitalist crisis. This mobilization must put the brakes on the dynamic of constant assaults on our rights, while laying the bases for the recovery and conquest of new social rights with the goal of a deep social transformation.
None of this would be possible without the grassroots support of everyday organizers who volunteer their time to grow the movement against Wall Street greed and political corruption. Here are eight simple things you can do to help advance the cause of equity for all:
 Work With Your Local Occupy: There are hundreds of Occupy groups still holding regular meetings and events. Chances are, there's one nearby. (And if there isn't yet - it's easy to start one!) General Assemblies are open to everyone, and everyone has a voice in the consensus planning process. So find your nearest Occupation and go to a GA! If they haven't already endorsed the General Strike, propose it to the group and start planning marches, distributing fliers, and forming direct action groups.
 Spread the Word On Social Media: Follow #M1GS, @OWSMayDay, @OccupyWallSt, and @OccupyGenStrike on Twitter. Also be sure to RSVP on Facebook and follow facebook.com/OccupyGeneralStrike. You can also look for city-specific events, like these from Chicago and Detroit.
 Start an Affinity Group: You can take action on your own. All you need are a few friends. Affinity groups are groups of people who know each other and come together autonomously for a particular action. Find a few people who are interested in helping you out on a project you have in mind - whether it's making fliers and literature to distribute, or shutting down a Wall Street bank in your hometown. Get creative, and get to work! (Here's a hint: OccuPrint collects, prints, and distributes posters from the worldwide Occupy movement, and they have a ton of amazing General Strike posters!)
 Join the General Strike Conference Calls: InterOccupy hosts regular calls to organize May 1st activities. Check out their schedule and join in the conversation!
 Talk to Labor: Due to federal laws, most unions are forbidden from organizing strikes for political reasons. However, unions and labor groups are still some of our strongest allies. During last year's General Strike in Oakland, many unions encouraged their workers to take the day off or attend demonstrations after work. Not long after Occupy Oakland shut down ports in solidarity with striking Longshoreman, their employers caved to the union's demands in a new contract. Get in touch with local unions and labor organizations, let them know about the plans for a General Strike, find out what they're working on and how you can help, and encourage them to let their members know about May 1st and get involved in organizing directly.
 Organize Your Workplace, Campus, or Community: If you're a unionized worker, encourage your union to support the General Strike. Whether your workplace is union or not, you can encourage co-workers to take a sick day on May 1st. If you can't afford to lose out on pay, that's okay - there will be plenty of celebrations, marches, and direct actions throughout all hours of the day. Invite your community to attend. If you're a student at a high school or college, spread the word to walk-out of class on May 1st. If you're not a worker or student, organize your friends!
More information: [MayDayNYC.org] | [OccupyMay1st.org] | [StrikeEverywhere.net] | [NYC General Assembly - May Day]
This is the beginning of Third World War, this time not country against country, but the people against the rulers in every country. Perhaps the only country that has put banksters and politicians where they belong, in jail, has been Iceland. With God's help, the World's revolution agains corruption will continue and overcome.
I hope this is huge.
I think May 1st is an important marker for the movements against corruption.
I pray for a huge turn-out all across the country.
I know going forward towards this. I see the need for communications and planning like never before.
So that when we hit the streets we will be carrying a coherent message of unity.
We can make a huge impression and make a great start for follow-up action through-out the rest of the year.
This may well be one of the most key gatherings that will ever happen.
Unite in common cause.
Talk issues not parties.
Money out of politics.
Remove conflict of interest from elected officials.
One subject at a time legislation - OSTA
Corporations are not people.
Fracking to be included in the EPA clean drinking water mandate.
No Tar sands pipeline.
Regulate fossil fuel speculation.
Implement green power generation - Wind Solar Geo-thermal Hydrogen Cold fusion etc.
Present information on things that need fixing and any petitions in existence that are already being used to lobby for change.
This is how we move forward together by sharing this information to the public and by sharing petitions concerning them hand out information at demonstrations. Publish leaflets for internet dispersal as well. Communicate clearly above all else.
I like this comment - very much. Especially after watching 4/24/2012 episode of Frontline. Documentaries 1st episode replays tomorrow night 4/25/2012 on PBS check your local listings and be ready to say wow. Final episode of the documentary is on next week. I believe 5/01/2012 on PBS.
Ouch patting your own back requires some flexibility.
60,000 is huge
60000 was not OWS - its was Wisconsin. They have a well defined issue that gets people out. Their stated goal is not to "Hit the 1% where they live and prevent them from getting to work." Its to preserve collective bargaining and get a fair wage.
Those people have battled back a right wing charge - they actually represent the 99% and have done a far better job of changing the conversation that the atrium crew.
You know what they say, "Beggers can't be choosers."
Others strive for real democracy. Not just a "fair" government and looser chains. Democracy is a well defined issue. It's an issue of power and decision making. Collective bargaining is good but when when workers are forbidden from even striking, it is nearly meaningless.
The govt-class is outraged that someone dare stand up to them. They want a more compliant boss and they want it now. Govt employees are a spoiled and powerful special interest group. But government is supposed to operate for all the people, not just those that work there. Reform is underway.
private employers are a special interest group
Government should operate for its people, not just its employees. Another radical principle buried by unions and the leftists that support them. They claim to fight for "working families" while ignoring the working families whose services are held hostage, whose taxes are driven higher to pay for it, and whose employees in government enjoy retirement packages they only dream of.
Smarten up Matt. You defend what's indefensible.
Imagine if all those working families either had a union worker, or worker/owner in the family? Imagine if they purchased a home built and sold by nonprofits? Imagine if the food they consumed was grown and distributed by co-ops? Imagine if they, not lifelong politicians or bureaucrats, participated in deciding how public monies would be spent? Imagine a banking and credit system that works with people, and didn't toss them out of their homes or ruin their credit rating when they're facing hardship?
Think you would be living in Siberia with all those imagines. Working on a collective farm, mining coal in a government mine, living in barracks, no iPhone, no iPad, no church, just a bucket of beer.
Is that the image you extrapolated from my comment?
Government should operate for its people, (not just its employees)
Unions claim to fight for "working families"
while ignoring the working families
whose services are held hostage,
whose taxes are driven higher to pay for it,
and whose employees in government enjoy retirement packages they only dream of.
that last rhythm is bungled
is this a last of declaration on how bad it is for the working man?
Again, a non-reply. The principles i laid out should be something so simple to recognize and agree with. But they aren't and that's bizarre and sad.
Govt's goal is to provide services in the most effective and efficient way possible for its citizens, not to just pad its employees. Radical, huh? It is to unions and leftists.
I just heard about the public health clinics "family" planning under threat of close
the democrats used this as a rally for the national women's rights day
it seems the best the dems can do is maintain status quo
and the best the repub can do id throw it away
"provide services in the most effective and efficient way possible"
You should think about applying this to corporations too.
In fact, you should do this to them first.
That will straighten out the other thing, with the least amount of effort.
I do every time i buy a good or service, i look at the price and what i get. If i don't like it, i choose something else.
But government is different. Its services are typically monopolies and its revenues are imposed by law. This too, I guess, isn't obvious.
The employees aren't entitled to both sides of the table. Unions hand picking their boss is a corruption and shifts govt's priorites away from the people and its mission and into merely being a servant of those that work there. It's broken and needs the reform the unions now fight.
Liberals should understand that the programs they claim to care about are all being crowded out by what's happening. But reason is your weakest trait, so it will have to get much worse before you'll be capable of understanding the problem.
Drop the buzz words and try making sense for change.
It makes discussion impossible.
Or was that your whole point? It would seem to be that way.
Use a little reason yourself, for a change of pace.
The system is broken because of corporate influence, and that influence includes anti-union activity. The very same anti-union activity that you are parroting.
Not surprising that you completely missed the point on getting corporations to be responsible. Not surprising at all.
You're not even that good at passing the propaganda.
Makes me wonder just what you think you are good at.
This is not a right wing/left wing issue. That you try to make it so underscores your ignorance/trolling. There are republicans in unions/and democrats/green party/libertarian. Unions are not a political affiliation. They do not influence the vote of the members, they simply point out which politicians are for or against their priorities.
And why shouldn't an employee get both sides of the table, Business owners and managers do that all the time. Look at how often Employers with union workers violate the contracts that they are supposed to be operating under! Why can they fire you for pretty much anything, but god forbid they be held to the slightest standard in their treatment of you, the employee. The only people arguing to oust unions are those greedy bastards in the 1% and their toadies who think that some day they to will wield this power.
This shows how little you understand the underlying issue. You should not be fighting to bring down unions, but fighting to bring up basic employee rights. It should not take a strike to get basic living wages, medical benefits/sick time, vacation, or some form of pension/retirement. Why should a government employee give up these things so that you feel better? Unionize your workplace, and learn to work together for the future, not the past.
Why should I want to unionize when I know I would end breaking the rules? I heard that as a union member that you are only allowed to do the jobs that are in your contract. I prefer not being limited like that.
Oh boy.....Buzz words!
Do you ever take a look at reality?
Why do you think the USA or any State therein should be anything less than an exemplary employer?
Yes, I do. The employees are pissed that they no longer own their boss. They want to fix that as soon as possible and get things back to normal. Tough shit if that's a bad deal for the rest of the population that doesn't work for government. There's your reality.
The only boss that should be permitted in the workplace is one that is a direct servant of his-her employees, appointed from among them, by them, and subject to immediate dismissal by them. It is very telling that tea party movement continually rejects with venom any notion of basic workplace democracy. That is exactly how populist and democratic they are. This is the same logic that blames unemployment on the minimum wage, and paints employers as a special, exploited class. Since you simply cannot trust any employer, government or private, to prioritize the well being of those who make his very existence possible in the first place, only sharing our work with him under conditions that we set makes sense. The growing effort to give free reign to employers, "market forces", and so on, necessitates a stronger defense of worker safeguards no matter who their employers are. I personally think established unions help out a little, but they are far to conciliatory. We should use whatever means we have to refuse any form of work that does not yield an acceptable quality of life. In governments and workplaces, authority should never, ever be given any latitude other than that of a servant to its immediate public. Anything less only serves to force an unnecessary scarcity economy.
Why would I want that type of responsibility for a job that I may not stay at?
I'd like to say that's presumptive of you, but it isn't even that. It's pure assumption. In order to avoid the the equative value of that assumption,I'll ignore the text of your reply.
Will you please answer the question?
You present the problem very well. The goal of government, get ready, is to serve its citizens. They're to negotiate with labor for the best deal possible just like they're to negotitate on our behalf for the best deal possible for everything else. Shocking, huh? Labor has corrupted this simple principle as unions have sought and acquired control of both sides of the negotiating table.
The goal of providing services at the best deal for citizens has been replaced by the goal of providing as much to employees as can possibly be slid past taxpayers. It' corrupt and it's broken. It's also seeing the best shot at reform in a generation in Wisconsin. It may very well be lost. The unions and leftists, of course, will do everything possible to make sure it fails and to send a message to anyone else that dares threathen the unions' control. It's wild how few of you leftists can understand and appreciate even the basic principles at this point.
You've presented the CATO side of the story very well and with "colorful" language. Over and over.
Now,one more time, please answer the question.
Not much of a reply. The employees over time found a way to own both sides of the table via the unions. It's broken. They've corrupted the process and now, confronted with reform and a boss that doesn't just do what he's told, they pee themselves.
Liberals are slow to get the simple point. The effectiveness and fairness of govt services have been compromised. Liberals should understand, but don't, that the programs they claim to care about are all being compromised as they're crowded out by what the unions bleed off.
Radical stuff... Govt provides services. It negotiates with all vendors and suppliers on behalf of its citizens to provide the best services to its citizens. It's truly fucked up how leftists like you can argue against something so right and obvious. It's first priorityis those services, not to be the employer of choice with zero turnover and benefits that far surpass those of the people paying for them. Why is this controversial?
Now, let me see.
I've asked you nicely to answer a simple question three times now.
You haven't so much as admitted the question was asked.
You've peppered you replies with buzz words and insults, both open and thinly veiled.
I'm going to ask you nicely, just one more time, to answer the simple question I asked.
You're apparently to dense to understand you've been answered. Sorry, let me bring it down closer to your level.
Govt's first priority isn't to be "exemplary" especially using what the union has in mind. LOL. If serving its people first ends up meaning it's exemplary, fine. But if it doesn't, that's fine too. Is this understandable?
Again, you have no reply to the simple principles set out.
Govt should serve its people, not just those that work there. Radical. Wisconsin unions disagree.
You want the USA to be a bad employer.
How stupid is that?
Pretty damn stupid.
You want the USA to be as stupid as you. That's even stupider.
The right to collective bargaining is just that, a right. A hard "earned" right at that.
You want to take that right away. That's not only stupid it's ignorant.
The simple principal is.....You are anti-rights.
You are a fascist.
You have shown absolutely NO understanding of collective bargaining at all. Nada.
You have shown NO understanding of a work life. None.
So just what is your level of understanding? Where have you worked?
What have you done, besides bitch about those who have improved their lot?
No, I want govt to fulfill its mission for its people. If in doing so, it's an "exemplary" employer fine. But what's happened is under the union strangehold and corruption of the negotiating process, being a top employer has taken precedence over the role of serving the people.
I understand collective bargaining very well. I also understand the damage it's brought to govt. Even FDR knew better.
You leftists think union control of govt is some victory for worming families. It isn't. It's paid for by more numerous working families that don't happen to work for govt and that are harmed by a govt that sees serving them at best as a second priority. Better off people can more easily simply move to areas less compromised or use non-govt services such as private schools that have'nt been corrupted.
Good then we finally agree.
The USA should be an exemplary employer. A shining example for those corporate asshats that refuse unions at every level.
Hey....guess what? All those people that work for the public...ARE the public.
Strange concept huh?
Everything you've said so far, indicates that you are mostly jealous of those that bargain for working rights.
Like a guy that no matter where he works, needs a union.
Just plain jealous, so you lash out at those who have done better than you.
he has never been in a union, nor worked with union people. He takes his presumptions( which u used correctly up top, but then changed it the incorrect assumption, which is something you do when you take on a role or title)from the Elite money pool that defines the Right wing issues. And listening to quacks like Glenn Beck, Bill O'Riley, and Rush Limbaugh. Unions are good. You should be arguing to bring all workers up to their standards, not down to yours. And those workers have every right to demand better pay, look at how much politicians bring in, set by themselves mind you. The fact you say "you leftists" show how anti-American you are, since it was not the left that came up with unions. It was hard working Americans. The reason you think its the left is because over the last 40 years, the right has never gotten over the fact that, GASP, the worker doesn't shut up and work, and now they are trying to put you back in your place. The reason Government is broken is because the wealthy and the Corporations have a disproportionate amount of influence in politics, thus rendering the actual services government tries to enact null and void. Look at the lobbying of congress over oil spill legislation, by companies actively engaged in an oil spill. That is unfair, and continues because of bigots like you( and yes you are a bigot, unfamiliar with the actual definition, look it up.), who incorrectly presume that unions are the cause of all grief and cost. Now I agree that no person nor orginization is immune to corruption. But the unions are much more democratic than a normal Fascist corporation.
No, it should serve it's people and if it so happens to be exemplary fine. But that's not in the least what the unions have in mind.
Yes, they're the people working for govt, but a small entrenched minority of the people living at the expense of the other people. That would be bad enough, but they're also compromising the mission of govt services. Tiny little details the unions kinda just skip past.
You moonbats talk of sticking it to the Man, but all you're really doing is sticking it to your neighbor that just doesn't happen to work for govt.
Occupy has given anyone who's been shouted down in the past a voice. This May, lets make our voices louder.
It seems like a very daunting task OW has taken on. I do beleive this movement can do it.
The govt employees have had a voice, they've been the only voice. But now reform has arrived and they're upset. They no longer own their boss and the idea that govt is there for its people, not just its employees is being restored. Special interest groups fight hard and we're seeing that now.
Organize! Agitate! Strike! Blockade!
I love this! Organizing strikes should be prioritized more and more as the movement grows. Keep it up!
also, for those who missed it: Noam Chomsky at Occupy Boston:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IZbNT62aprM (q&a at 28 minutes)
My main concerns with this is that not anywhere near enough people will join in, and repercussion from employers.
It's a good idea IF we all chip in and pull it off. Smart announcing it this far in advance too. It's definitely high time to start working together.
Participate in massive, simultaneous public displays of art all over New York City and around the world on May 1, 2012. Artists, musicians, performers, photographers, let us know what you're up to and how we can support you: http://www.call2create.org/
Midtown is a distraction. The individuals that run the system are certainly greedy and creating harm, but it is the system itself which we have most power to change. Wall St. is where it runs - let's go back there!
This could be the beginning of a revolution. We should choose a color for the clothing. Or more precisely, I think Occupy Wall Street should choose a color -- they're really in more of a position of leadership than anyone else right now, and I think most of us will abide by their choice.
One more thing this article should say is "Join the Union". Unions are not some exotic club that other people belong to. Unions are the members. With all their problems and limitations, they still ARE the organised working class. Unions can build major strikes and break the power of corporations. If all activists join unions the unions will become more activist.
The point of a general strike is not to stick it to the top tier, or to request their compliance. The point is to establish in a forceful manner that they actually own and control nothing. With no one to buy or produce their goods and services it becomes immediately obvious who the real owners are. A general strike proves demonstratively that the only monopoly these folks hold is a monopoly on authority and management derived tacitly by the consent of the actual producers and consumers. Without this consent, how irrelevant and unnecessary said persons and institutions is undeniable, actually laughable. It is a simple concept, and when a large number of people practice it, they end up owning a larger share of what has been, and will always be, theirs. In a general strike a community takes back what already belongs to it from the illusion that it is possible for those things to belong to any enforcing minority. Nothing other than assent and force keep such authorities in power. That is why their most important monopolies have always been the threats of violence and poverty. We don't need those threats. And the people committed to sustaining them, we need even less. They never owned any of us in the first place.
We say so, do so, en masse, and that rule is finished. It really is that simple.
This is my response to all the laissez-faire foolishness I read on this page.
I was initially quite skeptical of the idea of a May 1 action until friends convinced me otherwise. I was concerned that it would tend to show the weakness of the movement rather than its strength, but it was explained to me that OWS could successfully link with the immigrant rights movement which has had demos on that date for the past several years and several prominent unions have gotten on board the action. But what really turned me around was when my daughter, who is a performance artist and by no means a movement activist came to me independently and without my prompting and told me that she planned to participate in the May 1 actions,
I'm glad you shared your personal story, it really gives me hope for this. Thank you.
Update for 4/15ish - If I understand things, the timeline above has been slightly altered. Folks should look for newer information, because I think that MOST of these tentative details STAYED THE SAME, including the 8am to 2pm plan. BUT, I think that between 2pm and 4pm things shifted slightly? Wonder if someone should change it in the text above?
In my extensive experience the issue (problem) is not with big business but with labor unions and affirmative action. Lets get real and provide real numbers and metrics with what is really going on.
The main focus here in the U.S. on May1st,( recognized throughout the world as May Day and a day to celebrate Worker's), should be to march on Washington D.C. by the millions and demonstrate on the Nation's Capital to stop greed and corruption in the halls of Congress and Washington itself! Million worker's march to the mall and then to the nation's capital to demand an end to greedy and corruption in goverment and Wall Street, the Big Banks and Corporations!
I also hope this is huge.I support this idea and am promoting it with my fans and friends. We must fight back now. Down with this Corrupt Government !!! Screw You Washington.YOU SUCK !
I would recommend that anyone considering general strikes should research this tradition in other global cultures - looking at the results it has produced in a large context/the commentary of both the agitators and the 'unaffiliated' populace/the ways it has been used by immanent tyrannical states - such as bandh in India and Nepal - to decide if it is an effective tactic for the present situation - or how it could be best adapted to suit present situation and needs
What would we do without Wisconsinites?
yeah this is right up your guys ally. top thing "no work". you guys have been preparing for that for a while now.
Keeping this out front and on top!
.. ..I fear that Education is now coming under the Hands of the 1%.. agenda that will only be a Quantification of those educated in Fields they Deem for Self Serving Purposes.. The Job market will be controlled by the System.. which is exactly HOW you control a World Order. Just look at the latest news :
We wont see Tenure in about 25 years.. and Education is all We have left to fight back!
I agree only I think it has been in their hands for some time. I believe it is why the arts programs are always the first ones to go. They are trying to destroy creativity.
Dan... and may i agree with you as Well.. ( educated in the DC area.)
... I have seen the same thing all over. Beginning with Reagan when he took Free Community College out of the System... California went down hill from there on SO many levels...
Ty for your view. Marlow
How will a strike with no demands accomplish anything?
Is it going to give the unemployed work? Is it going to eliminate or reduce inequality? Is everyone not going to go back to work until everyone has a job with a living wage?
Or is it just fun to protest?
The railroads are key. They ship massive amounts of the 1 percent's goods. They are the bread and butter of the 1 percent's shipping in the United States.
Finally the 1% will realize what life without the 99% is like.
May-day .... :)
it will be a great year!
The WILL to promote change can OVERPOWER the FEAR of being that change - WE CAN CREATE CHANGE!
And you are here - WHY???
Member Rouge Forum Private Messages
Joined March 13, 2012
where do I go to join the protest? Are they still in zuccotti park?
I went by the park yesterday and their was two protesters there. If you go then it will become "Three's company" good luck and give em hell
Here is a simple lesson for you. The companies in midtown have a wide range of employees - from highly-paid "1%" managers, all the way down to working class support staff. The 1% folks can afford to miss a day of work. The working-class folks can't. They get paid hourly wage, and need the money to afford the basic costs of living. If you prevent people from going to work, the ones you're really hurting are the working class people you claim to support.
Obviously if people are physically prevented from going to work that is no way to win them over to the movement. On the other hand, at least since 2006, May Day has become a national holiday for immigrant rights. Many immigrants with the lowest paying jobs have participated in demonstrations on that day since then. In most large cities the General Strike movement has already teamed up with the immigrant rights movement already planning demonstrations on that day and is in no way counterposing itself to the needs of ordinary working folks on that day.
The above post specifically says that the goal is to block the 1% from going to work. How?
Block building entrances? How do you know which building? Block public transit? Lots of people take it for many reasons. Block the streets?
It sounds like a logistical and tactical disaster. OWS thinks that these actions help.
They have no idea how many people were turned off by N17, when they blocked streets in Lower Manhattan and celebrated stopping the NYSE morning bell at the wrong time. The protestors, who are quick to tell you how enlightened they are, did not even look up the right time beforehand. I personally saw protestors block kids from going to school. This sounds like it was planned with about the same amount of foresight.
For reasons of security and to be able to be effective with such tactics it makes sense that the direct action working group does not broadcast them in advance, And while it has not been perfect in this regard for the most part OWS has been extremely sensitive to the needs of ordinary working people. Were that not the case it would not have been able to forge the alliance with organized labor that OWS has, the first such alliance between organized labor and the radical intelligentcia since the 1940s.
The fact that you refer to yourself as the radical intelligensia (while comically butchering the spelling) really says a lot. The protestors in Wisconsin have come off as the intelligensia to me - not OWS. They have their act together.
Even with the above you are being vague - which unions? Does all of organized labor support you? Do you think that is going to last?
The people in Wisconsin have a well defined cause and are having tangible success - if you continue to come off as a mess that tie will end in a second.
I don't think the Wisconsin protestors would distinguish themselves from OWS. The initial Wisconsin protests were one of the inspirations of OWS and in turn OWS inspired the Wisconsin movement. There is an Occupy Madison movement which is both part of OWS and supportive of the Wisconsin movement in particular.
Thanks for correcting my spelling. It was never one of my strong points though I wouldn't exactly characterize it as comical either. I understand that Emma Goldman was a very poor speller, so as far as I'm concerned that puts me in good company.
It is certainly true that the entire labor movement has not supported OWS. Certainly for the most part, the building trades, the most conservative sector of organized labor, have not been especially supportive of OWS though many individual skilled craftsmen, especially electricians in the IBEW have be personally both supportive and quite active in OWS. While he hardly controls any of the unions which are directly affiliated with the federation AFL-CIO President Trumka has been openly supportive of the movment, has said our house is your house and has requested of all the affiliated locals that they make their physical facilities available to OWS. In Washington the national headquarters of the AFL CIO was made available to Occupy DC for rest and showers. In New York TWU local 100 was the first union to come out in support of OWS followed shortly by the national TWU and the New York teachers union, which has provided office and storage space to OWS since shortly after the occupation began, The SEIU including its massive 1199 local union have been supportive of OWS throughout the nation.
Again while support for OWS is hardly universal within the labor movement, neither is it inconsequential. Many other unions are supportive of OWS, but those above are among the major ones off the top of my head.
Organized labor is in deep, deep trouble and for the most part it is quite conscious of the trouble it is in which is a major motivating factor in the alliance with OWS, Organized labor in the United States today is weaker than at any time since the 1920s which is to say before any of the major contemporary labor laws were passed. Several knowledgeable labor insiders truly don't believe it will last 5 years at the present rate. Should it disappear completely or almost completely that would indeed be not just a tragedy but a real crisis for American democracy which really cannot survive with out significant mediating institutions of civil society of which labor unions and organized religion are the most significant.
You are not alone in being distressed about the lack of specific demands from OWS, Both many erstwhile OWS supporters and detractors find this distressing and I myself am ambivalent about it. That said, there is a compelling rationale within OWS about this and a key aspect of its radical edge. Its activists claim that to make demands would tend legitimate the very institutions which it opposes and that ultimately it seeks to displace those institutions, not mediate with them.
My personal feeling is that the grievances that OWS has raised are for the most part not cyclical but systemic and as such they are unlikely to disappear and so long as those grievances do not disappear it is unlikely that the movement that those grievances gave rise to will disappear.
I'm not sure if I personally qualify as part of the radical intelligensia, especially given how bad my spelling is, though it's nice to be so identified.
I disagree - I think the Wisconsin protestors would distinguish themselves from OWS. And the stronger OWS's negatives are - the faster that will occur.
They have an immediate pressing need and are articulate about it and strategic about getting it done. What you are saying is kind of my point. Labor has a specific set of issues and are protesting it accordingly. The second OWS comes off as disliked or a clown show they will drop that affiliation.
My personal feeling is that OWS has spread itself thin trying to tackle every injustice in the world instead of what got people to support it in the first place: income inequality and campaign finance reform. The transformative hype put out by OWS is not a substitute for focus and hard work.
I know a lot of union members who don't like being "told" they are on strike by a GA meeting of 100 or so people in an atrium.
And for the record - I did not call you part of the radical intelligensia. I called the protestors in Wisconsin a part of it. I would not put OWS in their league at this point.
To the best of my knowledge the call for a May 1 General Strike was initiated by Occupy LA after consultation with the SEIU in LA.
Occupy Madison, which sees itself as part of OWS is also itself part of the specifically Wisconsin movement.
The Declaration of the Occupation of New York City was one of the very first things taken up by the New York City General Assembly immediately after the occupation began and passed by consensus within a week after the beginning of the occupation, It contains more than 20 grievances and are precisely the laundry list of every injustice in the world which you find so troubling. Far from "spreading itself too thin" this approach has been part of OWS since the very beginning.
IMHO what got people to support OWS from the very beginning were not any specific demands (of which there were none) or any imagined set of demands, but the mere fact that people were finally in the streets protesting the pent up frustrations of a generation. While very shortly after it began the great mass of OWS activists were probably either liberal or the politically unformed who would undoubtedly be more than satisfied with campaign finance reform, the initiators of OWS and its most coherent political force, while a minority are strongly influenced by the anarchist intellectual tradition and they were from the beginning and continue to be, for better or worse, the movement's best and most outstanding organizers. I'm not saying this because this corresponds to my own political views but because as a part time activist in the movement that to me seems to be the reality.
Many unions are involved in organizing the May 1 event and OWS is making no effort to pre-empt organized labor in that regard.
I don't find the grievances troubling - I find them vague.
I am sure Occupy sees them selves as affiliated with the Wisconsin movement - its makes them look good. If a general strike was initiated by Occupy LA and the LA SEIU did union membership vote?
You are putting a lot on the table with this event and that energy and talent could be put to use with something focused on the actual 1% and not the people who live and work in Lower Manhattan and Midtown, and commute to and fro.
I realize the anarchists are more committed, but an anarchist driven movement, imo, turns the general public, also known as the actual 99%, off. It certainly did not help in Lower Manhattan.
Occupy Madison, which is in Madison and consists largely of Madisonians and Wisconsinites is part of OWS and it is also part of the specifically Wisconsin movement.
While sections of the labor movement are supportive of the May 1 movement they cannot call on their members to strike which would subject their organizations to prohibitive fines and jail terms for officers under the Taft Hartley provisions of the National Labor Relations Act. There is no legal prohibition on third parties calling on working people to strike and there has been some discussion of this within OWS but how to approach it most effectively is so far unresolved.
The unions that are supportive of the May 1 action are for the most part organizing before and after work rallies and marches, though it would be legal for unions to call out members who are between contracts or otherwise without a collective bargaining agreement, this is really a marginal part of the union membership.
I was personally extremely skeptical of the called May 1 action as I believe the abject failure of such an event would demonstrate only the weakness of the movement and not its strength, but I was slowly convinced otherwise by friends from LA. While not a genuine general strike they seem convinced, especially because of SEIU and immigrant rights support that they will be able to get a million to a million and a half people to participate in LA and perhaps 10 million nationwide. Of course that is nowhere near a genuine general strike of the entire work force and it is expected that much of the "participation" from organized labor will be in the form of after work rallies and marches rather than actually not clocking in for their regular shift.
The discussion of rallies at Bryant Park and Union Square are for the most part being organized by organized labor and not OWS, I expect that the actual demos in lower Manhattan will be the typical few hundred people that have demonstrated there since September 17, though the streets are so narrow there that it doesn't take much to tie things up, especially with a significant police presence, who presence there frequently contributes as much to the confusion as it does to resolve it.
The critique of anarchist leadership of the movement has been present from the beginning but the irony is that the liberals who criticize this anarchist leadership actually joined the movement as a consequence of that very leadership and that leadership continues to be the best organizers of the movement while the liberals spend their time in the movement largely making criticisms of the anarchist leadership not dissimilar to your own and doing very little actual organizing for their own part.
What is more it is precisely this anarchist leadership that forged the alliance with organized labor in the first days of the occupation and in both its cultural style and organizational structure organized labor is about as far from anarchism as it is possible to get. I'm 69 years old and I've been involved in radical social movements for nearly 50 years. I am by no means personally an anarchist, but I am most impressed with the technical and organizational skills of these anarchist influenced (not typically specifically anarchist) young people, They make not demands and have no expectations of the working people and liberals to whom they reach out. They simply reach out to then in solidarity which is how they have been able to get the positive responses they have gotten.
By no means do I blindly support everything they have done or their approach in its totality. There organizational approach and the so-called consensus model of the general assemblies I find muddled at best and very near a crisis stage, but in no way does that preclude my own unqualified participation (which I distinguish from mere support) in the movement.
Take a look at the grievances of the Declaration of the Occupation again. Aside from the fact that they are not formulated as specific demands (which they easily might be without much imagination) I can't say that I find them particularly vague.
I respect where you are coming from - but I still feel that, as currently organized and given the state of the GAs, the May 1 rally has more ability to do harm than good - either as a whimper after putting so many eggs in this basket or as harming OWS's image further in the public.
I still find the grievances vague and spread thin. Food rights is a great topic, but I feel its off message for OWS. The concern is that nothing is going to get done if OWS tries to tackle everything wrong with the world at once.
Take NDAA for instance. That was actually being debated in December during OWS. What if 100000 people showed up in DC the day the Senate voted? Instead of calling for a mass show up in DC people in NYC focused on taking Duarte Square.
Well, at this point there doesn't seem to be any stopping it so unless one is openly hostile to it, I think the best one can do at this point is get on board and hope for the best, though it is still several weeks until May 1 and I could change my opinion in the mean time,
The lack of demands I think has actually helped OWS in that it has been able to latch onto, support and come out in solidarity with any number of different protests without having to do any of the initial organizing of those protests itself, with its very meager forces. Attaching itself to specific labor struggles in progress or movements like the stop stop and frisk movement or the antifracking movement have both helped to build those movements and helped to build OWS.
Of course OWS has not been on top of everything it really can't be given its meager forces and one of its greatest weaknesses is the denial on the part of participants of exactly how weak the movement really is, though in their defense the movement looks much bigger from the inside than from the outside,
I was active in the early stages of the Million Worker March several years ago, Early on it looked like it was going to have the support of several major unions but they gradually bowed out, At that point I think March organizers should have pulled the plug but they didn't and the whole thing turned out to be a disaster, demonstrating the weakness of the movement and not its strength and only a couple of thousand people showed up in DC.
So far at least, I don't see events for May 1 unfolding in that way, though they could, Right now momentum for the event seems to be building rather than declining, which of course could change, but so far at least that does not seem to be the case,
Thanks for the insight - I hope your voice is being heard. I agree that realistic assessment of the movement from within is a big weakness and is why I would focus on smaller concentrated actions for now. But I hear your point. In addition to Stop and Frisk for instance the foreclosure auctions I thought were a good focus. Its a small event so a handful of people can impact it and it goes right to a core issue.
Really the first public event that OWS engaged in of which I am aware that was beyond Zuccotti was probably the solidarity action for locked out Sotherby workers. The movement was really tiny at the time and only days old, though a handful of union staffers were already involved, This action got press attention and this was before anyone was even pepper sprayed and I think it really rattled and at the same time inspired the labor leadership all the way up to the Phillip Murray Building on 16th Street in DC. While the movement is quite tiny it is also way too big for an individual who is not participating on a daily basis to have much impact on it. In addition its organizational structure does not only not lend itself to factionalism or put more positively group intervention, but is actually quite hostile to such interventions and anything that looks like an organized effort to get the movement to do this, that or nearly anything is, in my experience, generally frowned upon,
Continuing the above thought, my greatest distress with this forum is that there is that while the forum is full of ideas, interesting and boring, good, bad and indifferent, there is virtually no discussion as to how to get the movement to actually adopt any of these ideas. As someone who has been active at several different occupation sites as well as on this forum this has led me to the conclusion that few people who contribute to this forum actually have any experience at an actual occupation anywhere. I'm not judgemental about this. It just seems to be a fact of life. Frankly I find this as troublesome as some peoples complaints about trolls. It's been suggested to me that people choose the level of participation that they are comfortable with, but I don't buy that. I suspect that nearly everyone is within commuting distance of some local general assembly and even people with full time jobs take time off to go to bars, movies, church and other voluntary activities.
Since I've done both in my experience there is a world of difference between participating on this forum and going to an actual physical occupation and I've never seen the kind of insults thrown back and forth at an occupation that I see regularly on this forum,
This is the most absolute worst idea ever! How would a massive strike help? Watch some of the videos from occupy Oakland and see how some of the criminals there stole the flag from the capitol and BURNED it. Then everyone decided on the insane idea of a massive strike. All who support this are stupid and there is no way this will help. Everyone who participates will probably loose their jobs and they all deserve it. They make me sick and they are all pathetic!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
And you are here - WHY???
No Profile Information Private Messages
Joined March 16, 2012
Why would you promote a national strike when that would impact the 99% with the greater harm? The corporations will not be harmed by this, the 1% will not be even bothered by this, what is not purchased that day will be bought the next, what is not cleaned will be cleaned the next, no school means parents will need to arrange for child day care, and on and on.... You are asking people to risk employment for what? Marching? Shouting? And by the way, we already have a holiday for labor: Labor Day. And Why are you co-opting with unions when they are part of the problem with money in politics? Your promoting chaos, which is resented by most of the 99%.
I completely disagree, if we pull it off and enough people join in it will definitely affect the 1% in a huge way. I can't imagine a better show of power than this, especially as it's the power to simply say no.
Do the people protesting and marching risk less? Is it always going to be up to those less fortunate than others to do the "dirty work" so to speak?
I'm loads more concerned with implying that people should sit around or do nothing while a huge portion of our population has been left behind with no work and no hope for the future. That's truly disturbing.
But what do you believe it will accomplish? You are mistaken if you believe that this will affect the 1%. A show of power to do what? You need to realize that witholding spending or purchasing will greatly affect the 99%. Yelling at corporations does nothing. They are owned by stockholders. And these stockholders are very much a part of the 99%. Where do you think the pension funds and other investments of unions and individuals are? You want look at what Europe does and view it as how it should work here. Sorry, but That is apples and oranges. The real power here is at the voting booth.
How on earth is real power at the voting booth when we have a mere decision of picking either of two monied candidates? That's a simple distraction at best.
I'll start to buy into your idea that real power is at the voting booth once third party candidates are allowed to speak at the televised debates for one...
This will affect the 1%. Visibility is huge. If the turnout on the streets is large enough, the media blackout will be plain as day. Streaming has already started breaking down that barrier, especially with the Oakland crackdowns. People will take notice. Our discontent will be impossible to ignore or belittle. That's the start of the paradigm shift that's needed, where the bulk of people will realize participation in numbers means true power.
We've already changed the political conversation in America, why not try to turn it into active participation again?
Witholding spending or purchasing will have a MASSIVE effect on the 99%. They just might realize their buying decisions have power too, and break free from the mindless consumerism our culture breeds.
Stockholders are very much not a part of the 99%. That would imply that almost everyone owns stock in the first place. But that's funny, I never mentioned corporations at all... Thanks for connecting the dots with that reveal for me!
"You want look at what Europe does and view it as how it should work here." What? Please explain or at least rewrite this part of your reply. I don't recall mentioning Europe at all either, so I will need something better than this for it to be a talking point at all.
Let's talk about voting. This is a process. And it starts at the local levels and moves up from there. You can not really change from the top down and the process is structured at this time to prevent it. You need to move out the local party entrenchment first so that desired candidates get elevated to positions where change can start. But you need to convince the older voters that this will be a stable process so they will follow. Remember that these are the people that generally vote all the time and is a growing segment of population . You need to get them on your side but not by some of the ridiculous tactics and proposals that are written on this forum.
Just because it is a process, does not mean it is inherently flawless. A successful campaign on even the local level requires plenty of money to pay for tv ads, leaflets, etc. Please give me an example of such a grassroots approach working within the political system in recent memory, as I surely can't think of one.
Are you not trying to simply disenfranchise any attempts to work outside the current degraded system which heavily benefits the entrenched oligarchy?
I'll take a movement that has a real chance of bringing back the model & spirit of our Republic any day. You also claim bad tactics by Occupy, but yet even in the face of bills like HR 347 or the NDAA would have me believe our hope lies in the current system?
A quick instance is the early tea party action. That brought about a change in local elections very quickly. And local elections are not about tv ads, more of door to door. Your looking to wipe the process clean. That will not happen. Let's look at the impressions that the OWS in NYC have shown: camping, shouting, mic check, drumming, drug use, inability to form a coherent message, inability to agree or focus on the main goal (no money in politics), co-opting with unions (a hypocrisy) inability to appear as if you were at a job interview (that alone would grab media attention, bring some credibility, attract others), and on and on. Do you want the real 99% to join you? Then Fix your presentation. Right now OWS is the other 1%. Otherwise The rest of us will choose another path.
Wow, a lot of this is just sheer BS. The tea party? The guys funded in a great deal by the Koch brothers? The guys who've received millions in donations from conservative interest groups & the wealthy? Thanks for proving my point for me.
If that's your impression of the occupy & the encampments too, you need to get out and visit one. Quit consuming MSM mindlessly, and try a dose of reality. It might do some good.
I did visit and that is what I saw first hand. I was not impressed. Do you deny that what i mentioned did not occur? This movement has to clean up its act, make a better presentation to get other people to listen. If you do not see that, then it is you that needs to step back and take another look. The term 99% is meaningless until more join. As for the media, i read many different sources, both domestic and international to get different view points. One can discern slant in writing or reporting, usually by source, author or writing style. Sorry to hear that you have trouble with that. If you listen to only to what you wish to hear, you will not learn. As for the tea party,I was giving you a perspective of grass roots approach. In the beginning, the tea party was just that. It changed afterwards. If you want to change the system, you need to be inside the system to change it. Not from the outside. That's why it will fail unless they wake up to this. It is not that difficult to see this.
But you still don't see a bit of the paradoxical logic that you keep using. The tea party was co-opted by the 1%. Working through the system doesn't work, and it's near impossible for the common man to truly have a voice as things stand right now.
I still hold that political activism is the way to go, and is an intergal part of our republic. On that, I think we need to agree to disagree. It seems we just prefer different M.O.'s to some of the same problems.
Great to hear you use multiple sources for your news! Keep using critical thinking and a wide perspective. We need more of it from everyone. As an aside: a fun exercise is to see where some of these sources & movements get their funding, and by extension possible biases. A recently created site has most of the main ones down, and shows some real promise: http://sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=SourceWatch
If Occupy didn't have a real chance of succeeding at all we wouldn't be seeing this level of organized resistance by the established powers. Both in the form of crackdowns, subsequent blackout, and recent legislation. That's the real sign that this is working, and no amount of media misinformation or sheer non-coverage will change that. They're scared, and they are getting desperate.
A few things of what you claim are true, but how are all of them negative? Percussion instruments may just feel slighted at the connotation you've given them :D . For the most part the movement has been amazingly well behaved. Especially so considering the nature of police crackdowns. The mic check was a great idea, especially here in Chicago. It did a great job illustrating how much of a rubber stamp the city council has become.
Did you stay for the General Assembly of whichever encampment you went to (I don't need to know which specifically, I'm all about the right to privacy)? Do you have any prior experience with protests, and thus a prior gauge to go by? From my personal experience OWS is miles ahead of lots of protests and movements I've been a part of in the past. There are problems for sure, but hey we're all human too. At least there's a motivation to work on issues, that's more than Congress can say.
A problem I do have with lots of posters on here and people I meet is an unreasonably high standard that's been set for OWS. What's odd is said posters fail to apply it to other groups.
There are lessons from the past. But the non-violent approach is probably the best one. I am glad that most adhere to at. It's ok that we disagree on things, better for discussion and learning, and maybe one will convince the other to take another viewpoint. I have nothing against drummers, only the selfish stance displayed in NYC. A Lesson that is missing is presentation, especially in today's world of quick media. Here's a question: what do you think would happen if everyone marched in their "Sunday best"? I bet it would generate quite a buzz in the media. Take a page from the civil rights marchers. Maybe the high standard you mention is due to the shorter attention span today. People want it now, so expectations can push away the need for patience. As for the Tea party was co-opted, yes. But the early stages are a good example of local power in forcing change. It can be done. But you will need a lot more people willing to join something that right now is not comfortable to them. Presentation can change that, with a focused message; toss out all the other extraneous stuff. Thanks for the discussion.
Soros funded the OWS, and Soros is the richest investment banker on the planet. But move along, we're not allowed to talk about OWS in bad ways.
Soros #1 mission is population control, to exterminate 5 Billion people, funny yesterday that was #1 topic on this forum population control, ... lead the lemmings to the OWS, and then change the 'consensus' to population control.
Funny that like wizard of oz, the OWS has no leaders, ... yet Kalle Lasn is the wizard behind the curtain that nobody is allowed to see or discuss.
Funny most of all that the US Military is a banned subject, but then we know today that the US MIL is actively spying on protesters on US soil.
I am no fan of Soros but not sure of your topic as compared to what I was discussing. Sorry, but Sounds a bit paranoid.
I'm a late bloomer to the ideas promoted here - or rather the actual performance of such - and also am coming into this conversation late. I am a family man, a member of the USW in Maryland, and I was wondering if anyone has contacted my union to discuss our mobilization for the May 1 strike. I fear that no one has for I would think that I would have heard of it sooner. I am interested in participating and I am sure there are others in my union who would also - and NO, not just for the day off : ). Oh, and as a side note to that argument a few statements up - I heard the term "Being part of the system to institute change". To that I would ask where the activsts from the 60's had gone...answer - they are the ones that were coopted and that u r fighting against today. Yeah, they probably grand ideas about fighting the man and bringing about change. But then they were sold on that idea about changing the system from the inside. Well instead the system changed them. It's like the idea of a "Necessary Evil" - you make a compromise to attempt to do something good by doing just a tiny little bad thing, but the act compromises you and thus begins the downward spiral. Evils - little or big - become accepted and expected, a part of life. There can be no compromise with such, because in the end it corrupts the very ideals upon which you acted in the first place. It creates an ever widening vulnerability and you come to be that thing that you were fighting against. That is how the system defeats movements and ideas...it draws those who espouse and support them in and slowly devours them till there is nothing left. Would welcome information and an answer as to whether the USW was informed about the strike. Thanks.
I heard the funds were lost in stock investments
Again Matt, how about a little more than a one liner for once! Can you be more specific? You realize that fund valuation changes but in general usually is a good long term investment?
Are you not able to write your own opinion or show some capacity of discussion. I see your comments all over these forums yet it seems that all you ever write is a few words. I am asking you to try, I am not here to ridicule but rather have some debate or discussion. Here is an easy one: how old are you?
Wow Matt. That's really impressive. I guess you are capable of thought after all. But i find that you are wasting your time entertaining yourself with immature behavior. Why not use your time more constructively to engage and learn. After 60+ years, i still yearn to learn. And just to note. I can assure you that I am not a troll. Now back to the subject at hand. Are you capable of writing something your opinion or not? It is a simple yes of no question. One other note. Please do not play computer programming games with me. it is quite rude when one is actually trying to engage in civil discourse.
no I've given up
nothing posted today makes any sense
I daresay the tactic is to convince the people that they cannot understand
or at least I cannot understand
and have no business in government
You have every business in government and understand quite well. Don't let anyone ever tell you any different. Your posts are fine.
GF: a lot of his posts lack clarity, fail to respond to topic, are off topic, etc. I am trying to get him better engaged in actual discussion with some of his opinion rather than his typical responses. He posts with a few words but fails answer or explain when asked.
So after all of these months your big plan is to spend a day to prevent people in midtown from working?
What if they want to work that day - who are you to tell them no? What if they are part of the 99%?
Your claim above is that you are going to prevent the 1% from getting to work. How will you be able to tell which group a person is in?
I realize you all think this is an awesome idea - but it really sounds like something that will turn people off. I'm sure it will be in Romney's speeches the next day. The 60k in Wisconsin would have been there with or without OWS - they came before you and so did the folks in Spain. They have a definite cause and are protesting in a specific, thoughtful, smart fashion, not throwing darts and becoming an umbrella for everything under the sun. Linking this event to them is wishful thinking, you all could learn a lot from them.
We do acknowledge that both the Reclaim Wisconsin movement and the Spanish indignadas came before us, and we do learn from them. We've also talked and organized directly with them. Linking the event to them is not wishful thinking, it is a reflection of reality on the ground. It also says in the article that if someone can't afford to miss a day of work, they can still participate in May Day activities without skipping work and no one is going to stop them or judge them for doing what they have to do to survive. I don't have the same sympathy for the Wall Street bankers who may be inconvenienced (or even better, prevented from working) by May Day actions.
It's not a zero-sum game. We can support movements like the Wisconsin workers or striking students against tuition hikes, and they can stand in solidarity with us. We can fight for reforms one days, and dream of a completely different world the next. They have definite causes, Occupy is building a new system of self-government. The two don't conflict, they support one another. The Spanish protesters in Valencia, Barcelona, and so on know this of all people -- they helped teach it to us.
Its says the 1% are going to be blocked from working. How are you going to know who is who?
Do you think people are going to be walking around with their tax returns?
Statements like that and occupy is buildinmg a new system of self-government are what I mean by wishful thinking. As far as I can tell most GA meetings are endless and involve arguing about money - sounds like this system is working great.
People liked OWS (note past tense) because you HAD a cause, income inequality and campaign finance reform, not because they wanted a new system of government run by 10 anthropology majors in an atrium.
Also, I'm pretty okay with wishful thinking. Almost half of young people are unemployed, the gap between rich and poor is wider than ever, US soldiers are wantonly murdering Afghan civilians, bank elites are running the world from Washington to Brussels, and the only "alternative" offered by the current political system is Mitt Romney. Things aren't working; wishful thinking might be the only thing that can fix it.
Our cause has not changed. We're still fighting for economic equality. And the GA is far from perfect, but GAs are not the only part of OWS.