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Forum Post: 99% Declaration and OWS have parted ways

Posted 2 years ago on Jan. 3, 2012, 3:40 p.m. EST by Misfit138 (172)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

From Occupy Philly and the 99% Declaration initiative:

“OWS is a failure and there is no backup plan. it is antidemocratic and censors people outside of the narrow agenda of the small elite oligarchy that runs it; I have been down there and I saw them in action; they are a star chamber made up of anarchists and other antidemocratic movements who want everything and nothing. it cannot succeed; it has consumed it’s own oxygen and now the flame is out what a waste. we will press on with the nationwide election of delegates to a National General Assembly” “this is an anti-democratic movement and we withdraw our support.”

So I guess Philly is not happening next summer.

http://current.com/1hlaqkc

41 Comments

41 Comments


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[-] 5 points by TIOUAISE (2526) 2 years ago

I've been a staunch supporter of OWS from the very first weeks and I'm not sure I'm prepared to so soon declare it "a failure".... If OWS is prepared to take a hard look at itself and own up to its errors and shortcomings, I believe it can be reborn a MUCH stronger Movement.

One of the core problems is that the Movement has so far been dominated by IDEOLOGUES. A couple of hours ago, I suggested on this forum that someone like Cindy Sheehan could become one of the leaders. OWS absolutely needs more "REGULAR PEOPLE" and less ideologues...

Excessive attachment to ideology is, I'm sorry to say, a sign of fetichism and intellectual immaturity - and it creates an invisible barrier between OWS and "Us The People".

THINK ABOUT THIS, OWS... please!

Come down from your ivory tower of anarchist and other theories and CONDESCEND TO TALK WITH US SIMPLE FOLK...

We'll be waiting patiently down here...:)

[-] 2 points by Misfit138 (172) 2 years ago

Just by browsing some of the other OWS sites, it is obvious that the lack of leadership is hurting the movement. One group is planning a big rally this month, another is focused on June while another group is focused on July. Several small protests drawing a few dozen people will not have the same effect as one massive protest, but each OWS group is already starting to distinguish themselves as something different from the whole.

[-] 0 points by vets74 (344) from New York, NY 2 years ago

January 16th at Union Square is for the Occupy 4 Jobs action. 1 P.M.

That's been on the plan since September.

Doing these things is not so difficult.

Best results come when OWS works with other groups. Obvious reasons. Stay in it for the long run.

[-] 1 points by Rico (3027) 2 years ago

See http://occupywallst.org/forum/has-anyone-seen-an-organization-chart-for-ows/ for more news about how things are evolving.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

There is nothing, absolutely nothing, preventing anyone who says they are a supporter of OWS from joining OWS and becoming an active participant in OWS. I work, I have medical problems and I live at some distance from New York, yet I have managed to go to OWS several times a month starting with September 17. I believe that the vast majority of the American public lives no more than a couple of hours from the nearest occupation or GA.

Rather than "shoulding" all over OWS and saying it should do this or it should do that, what supports "should" do is begin participating in their closest GA or occupation. Of course most people cannot participate full time, but that does not mean that you cannot participate. One of the most beautiful things about the occupations are that you can show up at any time and leave at any time. There is always something to do. I have had some of the best political discussion of my life at Zuccotti at 3 and 4 in the morning.

For those who live too far from a GA to participate regularly, start one in your own community. There are instructions on this site regarding how to do so. If you need help the nearest GA or occupation will send someone to help you though you may have to pay transportation, room and board.

Rather than differentiating yourself from the movement as a supporter and carping about what it does or does not do, join the movement. Become an active participant. That is the best help anyone can give us.

[-] 2 points by Fishp00 (122) 2 years ago

there are so many pig backing causes now that OWS groups are attacking that I frankly think is a waste of time or in some ways don't agree with their call to action (for reference I live in Oakland). Banging my head against a wall and wasting my time and energy with ppl that are so extreme and don't come close to my perspective just turns me off to participating anymore. But maybe that's my own personal excuse to stay at home in the warmth :)

[-] 0 points by TIOUAISE (2526) 2 years ago

RedJazz, I respect you and what you have just written. But I don't think it's necessarity a bad thing to have some well-informed and occasionally critical voices inside the Movement... as long as they are constructive and sincere in their overall support of our Sacred Struggle.

Look at the Catholic Church: they have always silenced critical voices, even from their top theologians, some recognized as men of great faith and even geniuses... and look where THAT got them!

I have been a staunch and deeply grateful supporter of OWS from Day 1, BUT occasionally I feel the need to point out dangers or mistakes precisely BECAUSE I CARE SO DEEPLY. OWS is America's last chance and simply CANNOT be allowed to fail.

How do you see it?

[-] 3 points by Misfit138 (172) 2 years ago

Many have said it from the start, without organized leadership, OWS cannot succeed. Infighting of this type is only the start. As the weeks and months drag on, differences will become more prominent and I expect to see splinter groups break off with different grievances and solutions, that will each die off slowly as well. If only OWS could have stayed on message.

[-] 2 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

I do not know what that means. What does it mean for OWS to stay "on message?" What exactly is its message? It wants to fundamentally change the social system. How, exactly, has it departed from that "message?" Just because OWS is not hierarchachly organized does not mean that it is not organized. The GA and the working groups meet regularly despite the evictions, which itself is rather miraculous. The 99D is not a splinter group. Its values and approach are fundamentally different from those of OWS.

[-] 0 points by BystanderDC (91) 2 years ago

I think what he is saying is people are frustrated in the lack of leadership and direction. As you pointed out anyone can join and take action. That is ok to a point. It's like someone saying "I just want to start a drum circle" and a bunch of people saying "oh that sounds like fun." and others wanting to march and protest, but the people doing the drum circle rather just stay and do their drum circle. So instead of matching with 100 they match with less. I guess the problem I have seen is it's like a bunch of ADHD kids running from one shiny object to another with little discipline. That is what turns a lot of people off. I am frustrated by the lukewarm temperature if a lot of the events. Case in point, the Occupy DC event. We planned for 10 thousand and maybe got 20%, this should have beena huge event with solidarity from a lot of Occupy groups...but it was not. OWS showed up I force, but so many occupy groups god their own thing it took away from the event. This made the media coverage less. Who covers a protest of a few hundred people ob the Capitol?

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

The folks who complain about a lack of leadership, are at least as fuzzy in their thinking as the structures they criticize, probably moreso. There is all this fretting about a lack of leadership and absolutely no thought about how that leadership is to be chosen. Basically there are two kinds of leadership (probably more, but two that I can think of off hand). One is a bureaucratic leadership, the president, chair, or general secretary of an organization. The other is an organic leadership that evolves organically, usually because the media decides they are a leader. In the former case while people fret about a lack of leadership they offer absolutely no suggestions regarding changes in the structure of OWS or the various local GAs that would require such a leadership. In the latter case, that is an organic development. That type of leadership is not elected, but evolves naturally or unnaturally based on what the media decides.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 2 years ago

Fortunately, this movement is a lot bigger than the little cadre of nutcases and obstructionists that have temporarily userped it. A leaderless movement can shake off a bunch of self-appointed leaders like a dog shakes off fleas. The idea of OWS will more than survive, it will flourish. I am convinced this movement is only growing, even in this state of transition. Now we must find leaders that can lead. Elizabeth Warren, Russ Feingold, Berny Sanders? Their are a lot of possibilities.

[-] 2 points by Fishp00 (122) 2 years ago

dogs can't shake off fleas - they become infested then eventually the poor dog suffers from other secondary infections like pin worms.

[-] 1 points by GypsyKing (8719) 2 years ago

Good point. I'm hoping we can get the damned dog to the Vet. first.

[-] 0 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

Who has userped the movement? What is the evidence for this? I have been active in OWS since September 17 and I see no fundamental changes in any way in its values or way of functioning, which is rather remarkable given the amount of police harrassment it sustains daily.

Two of the three leaders you suggest are Democratic Party hacks and OWS has very specifically declared that it is not only nonpartisan, but that it is a social rather than a political movement, that it exists outside of politics.

What would an OWS leader do? Are we not all leaders? Would an OWS leader be its chair person, general secretary, president, or serve some other bureaucratic function? How would they be chosen? The only administrative bodies that exist within OWS are local GAs all quite independent and autonomous from each other and their related working groups. No mechanism exists to choose a "leader" whatever that means, and no specific role exists for them to play.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 2 years ago

Good luck.

[-] 1 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

Smug remarks do not answer questions. I'm still interested in any evidence that any particular group has in any sense userped the movement or what a leader would functionally do, how they would be chosen, and what exactly they would lead as the only organizational structures that currently exist in OWS are a series of unrelated local GAs. Exactly how would all this be accomplished? Inquiring minds want to know.

[-] 3 points by GypsyKing (8719) 2 years ago

Do you think it's technically impossible for this organization to chose a leader? I'm not convinced. However, let's assume that we don't do so. At what point would you be willing to conceed that what is going on now is becoming more and more about process and personality and less and less about concerted action?

I have heard many of the original Occupiers from Zucotti Park complain that that's what's happening, and that belief would be born out by a lager perspective on the movement right now.

I would expect that you would probably never conceed that there is a problem - not until you are the only one left in the room, and perhaps not even then. Why, because that's the way the far-left in America has always opperated - walked down a road towards more and more pureness of process, becoming more and more insular until the movement dies of it's own exclusiveness.

There is a saying . . . "One definition of insanity is to do the same thing over and over again and then expecting different results.

The simple truth is, that in order to succeed we must be flexible in our thinking - be willing to assess the effectiveness of what is going on and respond accordingly. What I am hearing from those very people who were in Zuctotti Park, is that the NGA has become a fringe group, impeding the movements progress. If that is not true than I have read many posts here that are fabrications. You imply that you are in the center of this organization, and therefore in a position to know. It is my expierence that those in the center of an organization are often the last to know. And I would add that probably a lot of the people impreding this movements progress are infiltrators, put there for that very effect. A known leader is better than a bunch of unknown leaders.

Can we wrap our heads around those facts and deal with them (if not by chosing a leader than in some other way)? Or will we just keep doing the same things over and over again, forever expecting different results?

My thinking is not based upon being some kind of "Democratic plant." My objective is to try to shine the light of truth on events. This does not make me popular, and I don't care, because if a movement starts lying to itself, it is finished. We are trying to do something of unprecidented difficulty; the only way forward is with unflinching truth. The truth (whatever it is, no matter how uncomfortable) will set you free.

[-] 0 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

I did not propose that OWS chose a leader. I do not know how it would do so or what the exact function of such a leader would be. Most organizational leaders have some kind of bureaucratic function. No organizational structures exist in OWS excepting for dozens of unrelated local GAs around the nation. Since I don't especially think a leader for OWS is necessary and I'm not at all clear about exactly what it is such a leader would do, it's not incombent on me to figure out how OWS might go about figuring out how OWS might chose a leader, though it does seem to me to be the responsibility of people who think OWS ought to have a designated leader (whatever that means).

In nearly 50 years of activism OWS is the least ego driven movement I have ever seen and I personally don't see how chosing a leader would change that. If anything, it seems to me it would do the opposite.

There is plenty of concerted action in OWS. Before the eviction in NYC there were at least two demos a day that OWS participated in either at its own initiative or in solidarity with other movements. Even since the eviction OWS participates in or initiates at least two demos a week. That strikes me as consistent concerted action. The same is true nationally and internationally.

Of course there are debates and conflicts within all the occupations and GAs. That's the nature of democracy. Among those conflicts are issues involving the decision making process, but I know of no organized effort in the NYC GA or any major GA to replace the existing decision making process with a system of specific elected leaders.

As to whether the movement is growing or falling apart, most of the reports I get are that new GAs are springing up all the time. Of course the "soft" support may vary, but what is important is the level of activism. There is no question that the eviction was a major set back in NYC, but that is an issue that is being addressed by the Direct Action Working Group. Meanwhile a very solid core of OWS activists remain in NYC and again, as an international movement OWS shows no sign of dwindling as long as the systemic problems it addresses continue, which is likely to be the case so long as they are what they are--systemic rather than cyclical.

Everything that OWS has done so far, based on its strategy of nonviolent direct action, has helped to build the movement. It continues with this strategy which so far show no signs of failing to help build the movement.

I am not at the center of anything. I work. I have medical problems and I live at some distance from New York, but I do consider myself a part time occupier and I do go to OWS and the NYC GA several times a month. I am perfectly cognazant of the fact that there are many frustrations within OWS. That is to be expected in any political movement. It is especially compounded by the eviction, since occupation was a defining characteristic of the movement.

That said, while there are many vague ideas about for reforming the NYC GA, I know of no plans either to displace it institutionally or to reform it in such a way as to provide for the election of a specific leadership with specifically defined roles.

All that said, you still have not answered my questions. How would a leader be chosen and what exactly would their specific bureaucratic role be?

[-] 4 points by GypsyKing (8719) 2 years ago

Firstly, I think the OWS idea is alive and well. My aim is to try to contribute to this movement's self analysis as it moves forward. Self analysis is often an uncomfortable process. I'll tell you how a leader would contribute, in my eyes, although it is merely being repetetive at this point. A leader would provide for concerted action rather than fragmented action. Maybe some people consider this unnecessary, I do not.

I find it strange that you want me to reply to your questions with specifics while you are unwilling to address my questions at all. After 50 years of activism, you may have seen first hand how many left-wing organizations have been thwarted by allowing process and personality to userp the actual goals of a movement and how to turn those goals into reality.

All I know is that the rank and file are seeing something at the leadership level (The NGA) that doesn't sit well with them, and that's a red flag. If they are becomming disillusioned that is a problem we must confront. You appear willing to simply gloss this over.

Passion is what drives a movement like this, and nothing kills passion like dysfunctional process . . . meetings, procedural debates that go nowhere, etc., etc., are murder to a movement's passion. Those are questions that cry out for solutions.

The final line of your comment is priceless . . . "What exactly would their specific bureaucratric role be?" Just the question itself, with it's whole weight of bureaucratic, Orwellian darkness, is enough to send most sane people running for the hills.

I'm sorry, our vision seems to be fundamentally different enough that we will just contine to talk past each other. My vision doesn't include the leadership of bureaucracy.

[-] 0 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

Outside of a handful of miniscule Marxist sectlets and groupescule there is no organized left in the United States nor has there been for nearly 100 years, ever since the destruction of the SP for its opposition to WWI. There have been epsisodic single issue social movements, but in fact, OWS is really the first really comprehensive social movement of any consequence since the demise of the old SP, which is precisely why so many in the media (or the general public for that matter) find it so incomprehensibe. There is simply nothing comparable in living memory. That said, it is still a tiny, tiny movement, much smaller than the SP at its peak, not to speak of the Populists.

Would the "leader" you propose be a chair person, a general secretary, a president or hold some other title? And what exactly is it that they would be chair, secretary or president of? Would their be other offices, or would this leader be some kind of benevolent dictator? I still have absolutely no idea how this leader would be chosen, who would chose them, or exactly what it is they would preside over. I would very much appreciate an explanation.

I do not know what questions you are asking me that you say I have not answered. Please restate them and I will answer them, but please also answer my questions to you.

There is of course, conflict in the NYC GA, but none of that that I am aware of is seeking the reform of the GA along the lines that would create an elected leadership.

The fact is that every elected leader of every organization of which I am aware has particular bureaucratic functions to fulfill. These tasks exist whether or not there are elected or appointed "leaders" to fulfill them, right now in the NYC GA they are all being fulfilled quite well by Working Groups, none of which have either elected or appointed leaders, though particular people are often requested to do or volunteer to do particular tasks.

[-] 3 points by GypsyKing (8719) 2 years ago

What bureaucratic function did Ghandi, or Martin Luther King fill in their respective movements; or in the case of MLK, according to you, non-movements - and does it matter?

The question is, can this movement in it's current shape continue to inspire the multitudes out there, desperate for inspiration and leadership? If it can, fine. I hope to God it can! If it can't, at some point we will have to confront that fact. This seems rather self-evident, and is in a nutshell all that I have been saying here.

You certainly do seem determined to turn this into an argument about "process," and I don't want to engage in that. More importantly, neither do the masses of people because it puts them off, which is the exact opposite of inspiration.

The process I'm in favor of is the one that will inspire people, and which will work, period. I don't really give a damn beyond that, because that's all that maters. Ghandi made it very plain that he had NO official place in the movement for Indian Independence. What we need is inspiration and guidance, and all that matters is that one way or the other we get it, and can thus move forward.

But no, let's argue instead among ourselves and forget our common objective completely - let's get into another long harrange about Robert's Rules of Order, or something. Can't you see the utter, sad, futility in this?!! No? I guess to some people "being right" is more important than progress, the arugument more impotant than the goal. Furthermore, I can see that you really like have the last word, so guess what, you can have it.

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[-] 0 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

MLK was in fact the chair of the Southern Christian Leadership Council, an organization which he invented after failing to capture the presidency of the National Baptist Convention from Aretha Franklin's father.

Nobody ever elected or appointed MLK to any other leadership position and in fact he was not especially well respected in the movement at the time. Those of us in CORE and SNCC, the most militant wing of the movement, used to refer to King as "De Lawd." His "leadership," such as it was, aside from his position at the head of the SCLC, was a media invention. The fact is there were many leaders of the civil rights movement, at least 6 at the national level that we used to refer to as "the Big Six": the heads of the NAACP, the Urban League, CORE, the SCLC, SNCC and the Negro American Labor Council. That was Wilkins, Young, Farmer, King and Randolph. The leadership of SNCC turned over on an annual basis. If there was any unelected leader of the movement it was probably Rustin and their were literally hundreds of identifiable elected leaders at the local level.

That is not so different from OWS right now excepting that leadership in OWS is not so ego based. That is, if you attend GAs or working groups it is fairly obvious that some people take more initiative and take more responsibility than others and some people have more talent in specific areas than others. Some people have been in the movement longer than others. All of these people already form an organic leadership not all that different than the leadership of any social movement, the main difference being that it is not ego based. The Pacifica station WBAI has a half hour program every night of OWS activities. It is streamed so anyone with an internet connection can get it. Pretty much the same personalities appear on that show fairly regularly, but again precisely because they are less ego driven than has been the case with previous movements, there is not a lot of name recognition. I am not suggesting that OWS is completely free of ego conflict, only that it is qualitatively less than any social movement that I have seen in the last 50 years.

Probably the most obvious "leaders" of OWS to the casual observer are the people who produce video streaming, but while they are most publicly visible they are also in no position to assert any particular kind of leadership "line." What is more, they tend to be ideologically predisposed to be as objective as possible, presenting the movement as a whole on their streams rather than adopting a particular "line" for the movement.

As far as Ghandi goes, obviously his leadership had to do with the moral force of his positions as well as the force of his personality. Nobody and no organization chose him to be a leader nor did he choose himself. If anything propelled him to a leadership position besides the positions he took and the force of his own personality it was probably the media of his day. But ultimately his leadership was an organic development, not a conscious choice on the part of any group or individual.

That would seem also to be the case of OWS. If it needs some kind of philosophical leadership embodied in a particular personality that leadership will either develop organically or it will not. If it needs an elected leadership based on the development of some more formal organizational structures, undoubtedly it will develop them also, but it does not seem to be at the point where a substantial number of OWS activists, much less a consensus, find the need for an elected leadership compelling. Meanwhile, it will continue on with the splendid organic leadership it already has.

I see this as an ongoing discussion and debate and I would be truly disappointed if this were the last word.

[-] 2 points by vets74 (344) from New York, NY 2 years ago

The one and only change that OWS NYC needs to make is to commit itself formally to the principles that go with nonviolent direct action.

Nonviolent Direct Action, more accurately.

This means getting on the same road with the hundreds of other NDA organizations worldwide. Gandhi figured out the basics for this while he was still in South Africa. He and his team got better at it all through the Indian independence movement. Dr. King adapted Gandhi's "Nine Principles" in 1963.

Since then, as the American Civil Rights Movement did so well and with so few casualties, hundreds of protest movements have taken steps. They are successful largely to the extent that they become "Nine Principles" movements.

Nonviolence is the fulcrum. Discipline is the lever. Going with the "Nine Principles" turns protests from looking like "Jackass" to looking like serious, broad spectrum civil demonstrations.

The "How-To" of protests matters.


  1. As you prepare for Occupy Wall Street, please open yourself to life, love and the blessings of faith, hope, and charity.
  2. Refrain from violence of fist, tongue and heart.
  3. Walk and talk in the manner of love; for truth and love are the core of life, neither ambition nor the temptations of control.
  4. Sacrifice personal wishes that all might be free.
  5. Observe with friends, with false friends and with your foes the ordinary rules of courtesy.
  6. Perform regular service for others and the world.
  7. Pray or simply ask within to be moved so that all men and women might be free.
  8. Remember that nonviolence seeks Justice and Reconciliation – not victory.
  9. Strive to be in good spirits and in good health. We are the 99% and we must go in peace.

"Nine Principles" adapted from Dr. M.L.King, Jr., and M.K. Gandhi

[-] 2 points by jart (1145) from New York, NY 2 years ago

How many times do we have to burn that douchebag before he gives up?

[-] 2 points by ms3000 (253) 2 years ago

Wrong! Game ON! Contract signed, permits obtained; downpayment sent! Go back to the island of misfit toys!

[-] 2 points by ZenDogTroll (13032) from South Burlington, VT 2 years ago

It's just one group. In Burlington we are going strong. I remain optimistic - precisely by the scope of all that is wrong in the country today - the issues are too huge for this movement to die out on the basis of infighting - we have to put aside many of our differences of ideology and get to work.

Solidify in confrontation to those who oppose us.

Related posts:

[-] 2 points by JimBeam (152) 2 years ago

I also have brought this to the front from the very begining. You can't have a successful large scale movement that has 30 or 40 different goals. Had OWS stuck to is core it may have worked.

[-] 3 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

OWS does not have 30 or 40 different goals. It has one goal. It wants to make a revolution. It wants to fundamentally transform this society and create a just, loving, democratic and peaceful society which is democratically controlled by all the people making daily decisions regarding the issues that face our common lives. I have no evidence that OWS has ever deviated from that. If anyone else does I would certainly like to see it.

[-] 2 points by Misfit138 (172) 2 years ago

The different OWS groups have gotten smaller and more focused on different goals all the while drifting further from the core issue. The "leaderless" aspect is a detriment.

[-] 1 points by ms3000 (253) 2 years ago

Votenet solutions has been hired to conduct the election of delegates and the contract for the venue has been signed. Get the latest info at the NYCGA webpage:

http://www.nycga.net/groups/the-99-declaration-working-group/

[-] 1 points by Fishp00 (122) 2 years ago

the very few in power rarely if ever represent the majority - extremists usually take over

[-] 1 points by Rico (3027) 2 years ago

See http://occupywallst.org/forum/has-anyone-seen-an-organization-chart-for-ows/ for more news about how things are evolving.

[-] 1 points by BradB2 (39) 2 years ago

just a reminder... exerpt: ">..To all communities that take action and form groups in the spirit of direct democracy, we offer support, documentation, and all of the resources at our disposal...."

"To ALL Communities..."

Declaration of the Occupation of New York City ----
http://www.nycga.net/resources/declaration/

This document was accepted by the NYC General Assembly on September 29, 2011 Translations: French, Slovak, Spanish, German, Italian, Arabic, Portuguese [all translations »]

As we gather together in solidarity to express a feeling of mass injustice, we must not lose sight of what brought us together. We write so that all people who feel wronged by the corporate forces of the world can know that we are your allies.

As one people, united, we acknowledge the reality: that the future of the human race requires the cooperation of its members; that our system must protect our rights, and upon corruption of that system, it is up to the individuals to protect their own rights, and those of their neighbors; that a democratic government derives its just power from the people, but corporations do not seek consent to extract wealth from the people and the Earth; and that no true democracy is attainable when the process is determined by economic power. We come to you at a time when corporations, which place profit over people, self-interest over justice, and oppression over equality, run our governments. We have peaceably assembled here, as is our right, to let these facts be known.

They have taken our houses through an illegal foreclosure process, despite not having the original mortgage. They have taken bailouts from taxpayers with impunity, and continue to give Executives exorbitant bonuses. They have perpetuated inequality and discrimination in the workplace based on age, the color of one’s skin, sex, gender identity and sexual orientation. They have poisoned the food supply through negligence, and undermined the farming system through monopolization. They have profited off of the torture, confinement, and cruel treatment of countless animals, and actively hide these practices. They have continuously sought to strip employees of the right to negotiate for better pay and safer working conditions. They have held students hostage with tens of thousands of dollars of debt on education, which is itself a human right. They have consistently outsourced labor and used that outsourcing as leverage to cut workers’ healthcare and pay. They have influenced the courts to achieve the same rights as people, with none of the culpability or responsibility. They have spent millions of dollars on legal teams that look for ways to get them out of contracts in regards to health insurance. They have sold our privacy as a commodity. They have used the military and police force to prevent freedom of the press. They have deliberately declined to recall faulty products endangering lives in pursuit of profit. They determine economic policy, despite the catastrophic failures their policies have produced and continue to produce. They have donated large sums of money to politicians, who are responsible for regulating them. They continue to block alternate forms of energy to keep us dependent on oil. They continue to block generic forms of medicine that could save people’s lives or provide relief in order to protect investments that have already turned a substantial profit. They have purposely covered up oil spills, accidents, faulty bookkeeping, and inactive ingredients in pursuit of profit. They purposefully keep people misinformed and fearful through their control of the media. They have accepted private contracts to murder prisoners even when presented with serious doubts about their guilt. They have perpetuated colonialism at home and abroad. They have participated in the torture and murder of innocent civilians overseas. They continue to create weapons of mass destruction in order to receive government contracts.* To the people of the world,

We, the New York City General Assembly occupying Wall Street in Liberty Square, urge you to assert your power.

Exercise your right to peaceably assemble; occupy public space; create a process to address the problems we face, and generate solutions accessible to everyone.

To all communities that take action and form groups in the spirit of direct democracy, we offer support, documentation, and all of the resources at our disposal.

Join us and make your voices heard!

[-] 1 points by CentralPaFarm (4) from Thompsontown, PA 2 years ago

OWS was good in the beginning to get some people thinking but all it seems to be able to do now is get in the cops faces and cause business to become angry.

Its time the tatic was changed.. but ohh nooo they are getting more defiant and it will come to a head where the majority won't support them for not moving forward in a positive direction to ACTUALLY GET SOMETHING ACCOMPLISHED ON THE LEGAL FRONT... thats why this old hippie supports http://www.the99declaration.org .. its time to GET THE LEGAL STUFF CHANGED... remember the reason we all got upset in the first place !!!!

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[-] 1 points by CentralPaFarm (4) from Thompsontown, PA 2 years ago

Yes ego minded obstructionist who want to control are the problems. Many times they are also professional homeless who don't want to see success and see others move on to a better life..

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[-] 0 points by Rico (3027) 2 years ago

I can't figure any of this out.

The link you posted derives from Occupy Philly's site at http://current.com/1hlaqkc which has the same information dated 12/15/2011. The article on Occupy Philly's site identifies Michael Pollok as the leader of the 99% Declaration and says they have their own web site. I found it at http://www.the-99-declaration.org/board-members-of-the-99-working-group-ltd/ .

Everything looks like it is described on Occupy Philly's site.

I was then surpised to find that the 99% Declaration Working Group on the NYCGA site at http://www.nycga.net/groups/the-99-declaration-working-group/docs/ shows the group had a meeting 1/5/2012 and published minutes for that meeting at http://www.nycga.net/groups/the-99-declaration-working-group/docs/minutes-for-january-5th-facilitation-committee-meeting-for-the-99-declaration indicating Michael Pollok ran the meeting !

I don't get it. It looks like the 99% Working Group is in fact a separate entity run by Michael Pollok using separate funds, and they do appear to have been disavowed by Occupy Philly. At the same time, however, they're still posting recent updates on the NYGCA site.

I'm not sure what's going on, but it smells like infighting and death.

[-] -1 points by Thrasymaque (-2138) 2 years ago

OWS is apolitical. They will never make demands or otherwise engage in political discussions. They have been clear about this from the beginning, and I don't see why it would change now. They want a revolution. Period. It's written on the front page of this site.

[-] 1 points by Rico (3027) 2 years ago

What I can't "get" is how Occupy Philly can so resoundingly denouce the 99% Declaration, yet it is still operating as working group under NYGCA and also operating as an independent on it's own site.

By the way, the internals of NYCGA are coalescing in a remarkable way. See my post at http://occupywallst.org/forum/has-anyone-seen-an-organization-chart-for-ows/#comment-575812 .

[-] 0 points by rosa999 (8) 2 years ago

I always thought that declaration was a little weird.

[-] 0 points by RedJazz43 (2757) 2 years ago

So what's new? They were never together in the first place.

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