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Forum Post: Adult conversation with Occupy detractors

Posted 2 years ago on Nov. 6, 2011, 5:45 p.m. EST by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

I would like to extend an offering to the detractors on this forum, to engage in a legitimate, meaningful discussion of why you disagree. I respectfully ask that we please keep to real topics, such as; political/economic philosophy(ies), reforms (election/campaign, financial, legislative and so forth), etc.

Can we please keep this post free of; propaganda, pissing contests and all of the other typically unproductive dirt that gets tossed back and forth? We are all mature enough to realize that individuals have personal opinions that may or may not reflect the other members of the 99%. For instance, I adamantly adhere to a capitalistic economic philosophy (with democratic checks and balances) and I am well aware some do not share this view.

No reasonable, peaceful and legal topic is off limits for me and I invite anyone and everyone to respectfully chime in. Thanks.

131 Comments

131 Comments


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[-] 3 points by Democracydriven (658) 2 years ago

I feel that the majority of the people opinionating in this site are only here to tear down the movement

It has been well stated by them that the OWS has not declared what they want (the opposition just knows it opposes, not why?)

My question to them is what are you afraid of? I have seen all kinds of imaginary (non -existent) villains be spoken against. I have seen the imaginary overthrow of our government spoken against. (yet nobody advocates any of the scenarios that are spoken against)

There is now talk about people defending themselves against OWS, yet there have been no threats to anybody from OWS

The bottom line Not stating what the OWS wants is their biggest organizing tool. It is the fuel that is building the movement.

It is revealing an opposition that will “make up things to be against”.

The collective opposition (some do know what it is about) is saying far more about their own imagined fear of the eventual success of OWS than anything else

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Great post. I actually think that MOST know what "it" is about. This misinformation campaign is the 1%'s counter-attack for the hearts-and-minds. I'm sure some people will fall for it, at least for a period. In the long run they will fail. There are too many people who have seem the evil beneath the veil.

[-] 1 points by Democracydriven (658) 2 years ago

Thanks, I have to agree about their failure. They can only use fear and lies for so long before people start asking for facts.

[-] 2 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Ok I'm out for now. Two more 8 page papers to write. Instead of reading of been on here all day! See you all soon, thanks for the great conversations :)

[-] 2 points by ARod1993 (2420) 2 years ago

True, true. This damn forum is worse than Reddit...

[-] 1 points by spflhome (41) 2 years ago

Need your help. pl. click the link and sign the petition to send the message to politicians and fix our economic problems. Need millions of signatures to get politicians attention and make this work. Here is the link:

http://www.change.org/petitions/members-of-congress-and-senators-fix-the-economy-and-balance-the-budget-now?pe=d4e

[-] 1 points by energy99 (16) 2 years ago

I think the movement needs to put together an agenda and work towards certain goals . Some ideas:

1- Healthcare for everyone 2. Work with unions to organize all the workers in every industry including financial 3. Penalize corporations fro exporting jobs ( 10 years pay plus medical benefits for 10 years ) 4. Set up a safe and rewarding whistle blower system for those working for corporations that can provide proof and documentation of the illegal or unethical practices 5. Pension plan for every one

[-] 1 points by UPonLocal (309) 2 years ago

What about a voting system?

[-] 1 points by UPonLocal (309) 2 years ago

I think it is very viable enough view to be put to a vote..

Let's do it here;

http://uponlocal.com/up-on-local-media/node/add/issue

http://uponlocal.com/up-on-local-media/node/add/solutions

We are offering to give the Site over to OWS, we think this will allow all of America to join with OWS...even those in remote areas..

www.uponlocal.com

[-] 1 points by nsd72 (31) 2 years ago

good post. there's a website out there that re-appraises the political-social-economic model and raises wellbeing to the fore. striving for improved wellbeing is the right and duty (yes duty) of the individual, society & govt - because when people improve their wellbeing, you'll see profound consequences. the economy & austerity measures are only damaging wellbeing which will compound the problem... a country with improving wellbeing can operate on smaller public service budgets. why not unite people with this view behind a new symbol, one that captures the zeitgeist and means i care about myself, other people and the world we share? it would be a timely alternative to the peace sign. there's a growing movement out there - check out tocamu.com if this makes sense. here's the link to the summary (there's lots more on the website): http://www.tocamu.com/?page_id=4001

[-] 1 points by spflhome (41) 2 years ago

If you really like to change things, please click the following link and start a campaign to get millions to sign it......Thanks.

http://www.change.org/petitions/members-of-congress-and-senators-fix-the-economy-and-balance-the-budget-now?pe=d4e

[-] 1 points by Spankysmojo (849) 2 years ago

Good luck. I've been trying, one at a time. They are impervious to logic.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

It seems like the moderators have reappered. Things are looking up, cause I can't argue with the crazies anymore today. This post has been great though.

[-] 0 points by Spankysmojo (849) 2 years ago

Yes but very taxing. Good that they're back. It's outta hand.

[-] 2 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Yesterday I was threatened with; firebombs, stabbing, being mowed down by 5.56, starved, burned and wished I would freeze to death. Pretty harsh considering I'm pretty moderate and totally open minded :)

[-] 1 points by Spankysmojo (849) 2 years ago

They threatened me with that too. Horrible. That is how the less intelligent deal with the intelligent.

[-] 1 points by OurTimes2011 (377) from Arlington, VA 2 years ago

Thanks for the suggestion. I hope it gets some cooperation.

[-] 1 points by Josue (13) 2 years ago

Having an immediate impact on the political discourse is enough of an achievement now. What's the rush? The cold weather will only add to the solidarity and sense of heroic purpose. Think: Valley Forge!

[-] 1 points by ryancozzens (32) 2 years ago

I am working on two amendments, 28 an 29. One would create a campaign finance system that does not favor those with more money. Another would create an environment where any group would have the same chance to lobby and the largest corporations. I will be unveiling these this winter and traveling with the campaign trail next spring to rally support.

Please Follow Me on Twitter @ryan_cozzens

[-] 1 points by wormholes (19) 2 years ago

Vision statement, Mission Statement and Core Values: these are needed in order to move forward. If the Occupy movement really wants to accomplish evolutionary improvement, it must take the time and discipline to work on these core aspects. If the Occupy movement cannot do this, it will not go far. However, once Vision Statement, Mission Statement and Core Values are determined by the current Occupy system, they should be EVERYWHERE and reviewed daily by ALL GAs. All newcomers will know from the get-go what is expected. IF - and that's a big IF - the Occupy movement can get these three components established, it will take on more potency.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Ultimately sure. You are missing a big point though. I mentioned it already a few times below.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Happy deleted their post, so I couldn't post as a reply but here is my response anyway: You make a lot of very good points. First and foremost, I will address the time frame issue as many have brought it up. Hate to say it but there is a lot messed up the needs to be fixed with or current system (see below on election reform). That is going to take time to sort out, prioritize and address.

Some people are frustrated by not having a list of demands, there is a very specific reason that does not exist (please see my responses below). In addition to the main reason below, I must point out that this movement is not a ready made 3rd party as many want to see. This movement is diametrically opposed to that viewpoint as it would ultimately be ineffective (see below). The tea party is great in it's own right. The problem is that we are not a niche group which can be "tolerated" by the existing two-party system in that sense. We are seeking real change and not empty appeasement. Because it is based on what is best for the actual people and not nicely packaged by lobbyists and campaign contributors, the issues must be given actual thought and deliberation.

I think I got everything.

[-] 1 points by TechJunkie (3029) from Miami Beach, FL 2 years ago

I don't disagree. But I'm not sure what there is to agree with, which is why I tend to be hard on the people who I think are squandering the opportunity to accomplish something.

It's called "tough love".

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

The only opportunity is the one they are making for themselves. Sounds like capitalism and democracy at their finest to me.

[-] 1 points by buik (380) from Towson, MD 2 years ago

arent there enough of those conversations, tho?

i feel better letting other people have them for me. they are probably better informed anyway. i'm no expert on occupy and i dont really want to be one.

to me, the whole occupy thing is an interesting social phenomenon. someone told me "occupy isnt for your personal amusement" but i cannot disagree more.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Interesting, and in all sincerity, then why are you here? I'm trying to be fair, even though these are the comments I was hoping to avoid. If your sole purpose is to be amused when you see so many of your country men and women standing up for what they feel is injustice, why not join the debate? Are having stimulating conversations and debates, to a noble purpose, not entertaining enough?

[-] 1 points by DuncanID (12) 2 years ago

I've been spending a few hours a day reading about the Occupy movement for a week or two now. My ladyfriend knew it was only a matter of time until I posted. In response to your question about why I am not joining in the debate, I hate to say this, but I have not seen a great deal of intellectual honesty when it comes to the discussions here (to say nothing of my own intrinsic fear that arguing on the internet is as pointless now as it was when I was debating the ethics of hacking on video game forums 8 years ago). I admit I am one of those that would love to see a more vocalized agenda/goal/plan, but I am intrigued by the idea of a leaderless movement.

What I can't ethically balance is how a movement that declares itself as representing 99% of the country can be so downright gleeful when it comes to excluding the opinions of the people they claim to represent. When violence happens - those are non-movement provacateurs. When conservative viewpoints are raised - those are from paid-posters representing the 1%. Fox News? How many times in the last hour have I read negative commentary on a news source that is obviously popular with parts of the 99%? There was at least one long thread villifying Christianity, which strangely enough was both allowed to persist and (when I stopped reading it - navigating these forums is also tricky at times) was not being as resoundly booed down as I would have expected given how many of the 99% identify themselves as Christians.

And the one that really confounds me, the continued veiled comments around the possibility that police are sending homeless into the park. As one who does not identify with OWS, I 100% totally understand why this is not popular. However, the rhetoric of the movement is completely inclusionary when it comes to the homeless. Some might even argue that the movement is about those same individuals.

I don't share the viewpoints of the movement, admittedly, but it is hard to get excited about online debate when a group that claims to represent me also seems very willing to shout down those expressing views I hold or may hold.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

I agree completely with the arguing on the Internet part. Over the last few days there has been a massive influx of garbage posts pretending to be; anti-semetic, anti-Christian, warped Christian, violence related, etc. These posts come from a small handful of people who post consistently for 8-12 hours per day, under the same username.

I myself am a devout Christian. Most of us have given up responding to those inflammatory posts as it only encourages them and bumps the post position. My complaint with this forum is the lack of any effective (basically non-existent) moderation.

To address your other concerns; I have to disagree with your assessment of getting blasted for conservative/right wing views. I am a ferocious capitalist, who understands the need for democratic checks and balances. I have defended that viewpoint strenuously and have never been disrespectfully criticized. A few good debates but nothing Ayn Rand and I couldn't handle :)

To address the fox news bit. I can't really defend any national media. They are extremely biased all around. As far as the homeless, I haven't really been involved in that conversation but I can speculate. My guess would be that people are fed up with some pretty poor treatment by some officers (but not most!) Search YouTube for "occupy", I've seen some pretty bad stuff. Tough spot for the police to be in too.

Thank you for posting!

[-] 1 points by buik (380) from Towson, MD 2 years ago

i think it is very interesting from a psychological perspective, and maybe, specifically, from the perspective of social evolution. what i see is a bunch of unhappy people on both sides, fighting over money allocation, all being made miserable by money, making each other miserable.

i think maybe i am waiting for some kind of breakthrough moment.

[-] 2 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

That is where many of us stand. I, myself, became disenfranchised with the belief in the two party political system and FPTP elections and it's ability to come anywhere close to representing my views. Then it drowned itself in a complete mire, incapable of accomplishing anything pertinent. Many of us realized that, despite our institutionalized belief in the possibility of achieving the American dream, our chances our actually very, very slim (17%) and in fact much lower than other countries (40% switzerland, 30% UK). The market freedom of capitalism was replaced with oligarchy and the democratic process subverted to a form of neosocialistic corporatism.

I feel this is due to a corrupt, corporate/government alliance and the vast majority of issues stemming from this. I also feel that, due to the interference of this relationship, our leader are no longer willing or able to protect the welfare of this country, particularly economically. This, in large part, is due to the failure of K-12 public schools to properly teach critical thinking skills or educate to an even basic level of competency, as well as the media's failure as a watchdog.

On to media, as mentioned they have failed miserably in their ability to accurately represent the pertinent issues affecting society and have systematically reduced the publics ability to respond to looming crisis. Free, accessible media channels have been restricted, apart from the Internet, and there is now reason to believe a coordinated effort to disrupt that is being undertaken.

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

Don't waste your valuable time. Write instead to the Moderator of this forum, which has become so TROLL-INFESTED as to be virtually unusable.

There are moderating policies in place, but even with the 25 administrators in charge, they are not being implemented.

Such CHAOS and UNDECISIVENESS ("vacilacion" as we say in Spanish) reflects poorly on the whole Movement. I've been saying it publicly and writing it for weeks, but nothing has changed. The insiders tell me that "because there is no leadership, no decisions are being made". Since when was leadership a dirty word? "NO DECISIONS" could kill the Movement in its infancy.

[-] 0 points by MissBirdy (-78) from Thornwood, NY 2 years ago

what gives you the right to decide what the opinion of th 99% is?

[-] 0 points by MissBirdy (-78) from Thornwood, NY 2 years ago

what gives you the right to decide what the opinion of th 99% is?

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Who?

[-] 0 points by MissBirdy (-78) from Thornwood, NY 2 years ago

what r u talking about...I'm kinda middle class. am in the 99%? I have a job,, I pay my bills.. I buy my groceries, I pay taxes. My tax.$$$ are going too much for welfare and food stamps and medicaid fraud,. I'm angry

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

I do not believe anarchy is the best solution to our problems.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Nor do I. Good, I'm glad we got that out of the way.

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

Then why support an anarchic movement.

[-] 0 points by thomasmiller (163) 2 years ago

I come on here because I care about you all. I know you will not get anything out of this in the end and the economy will only suffer as a result of your "revolution". We need to be working as a team right now and doing so constructively finding solutions. Sitting in at the local bank will not bring back the economy. Converting the United States into a communist or socialist nation wont work either...

[-] 1 points by gestopomilly (497) 2 years ago

first: eliminate foreign aid welfare. we cant afford it any longer.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Disagree, agree, partially disagree and absolutely agree.

One could argue that the donations, which every attempt is made to spend locally, are actually increasing economic activity in those areas. I agree with everything else with the only caveat being, I feel, you should not underestimate the significance of the bank move. Is that going to bankrupt the large banks? Not by a longshot. What it does do is show corporations our ability to unify and make massive market adjustments ourselves. Additionally, local credit unions are usually not for profit and lend the majority of their money to locals, particularly local business.

[-] 0 points by pinker (586) 2 years ago

My problem with OWS is the real suffering I have seen up close and in person around the world. For instance, OWS keeps saying "The Whole World is Watching" when 1.6 billion people on this planet live without electricity- they'd love to be able to watch, but they live in true poverty, a poverty that people in the US can't even fathom. We are not suffering in the US.

And yes, one can focus on more than one issue at a time, but look at the lack of funding being donated to Somalia right now. Your "issues" are taking focus off real issues on our planet.

Move your money to a credit union? Do you have money to move? The truly poor of the world would love to have your problems.

That is my main issue: this is absurd. Some of your issues, such as getting money out of politics, I can dig. The whining I cannot. Many people on this planet would love to have those North Face tents because they have no home at all and there you are, a bunch of kids thinking you have it hard.

Buck up and look around the world. You don't have problems.

[-] 2 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

I can relate to those concerns. I have studied for some time in Central America and saw horrific conditions, particularly in Nicaragua. Homes literally constructed from a sheet of corrugated steel roofing and a shower curtain. However, in order to address the needs of the world we must have the means to offer assistance. Without a stable economic base, that is simply not going to be a priority for those struggling to feed their own children. Do we have it better in the United States? Certainly. Is that "better" rapidly and catastrophically being eroded by swindlers? Yes. We have to keep eyes at home as well as abroad. Thank you for posting.

[-] 4 points by PandoraK (1678) 2 years ago

Working with the families of addicted persons has taught me one thing that is applicable to all aspects of life, politics, nations...

That one thing is, you can't help anyone until you have helped yourself.

As a people there are many of us unhappy with the way our country is being 'operated'. We see there are things that are wrong or not exactly right yet as individuals we are ineffective as voters we are often ineffective, because our elected officials simply do not feel a need to meet the criteria they campaigned on.

I see lots of posts asking what OWS wants, you are it. Your concerns being discussed, your input on what is wrong even when responses get heated, it's still dialogue, and there is a chance that something will come out of it that fits.

Yes, there are those who come to this forum with the intent to 'scam, or troll', but when one considers that it's still attention, someone has cared enough to say something, even if it is negative or outright offensive.

We, the American People, have been apathetic for too long, we've been 'letting George do it'. OWS has changed that, you are reading here and maybe it'll be you that makes the suggestion that chimes in hundreds, the suggestion that 'helps us help ourselves' so that we may help others.

None of us have any idea of how many of our working poor donate, to funds for aid to other countries, or how many 'adopt' children in destitute villages...but I know there are many who do. Who skip a meal, which might be the only meal that person would have eaten that day, so the funds they promised would be available for someone else.

OWS has brought into the light that our banks are gambling IRAs, 401s and pension plans for their own profit, that these same banks when it looks like these gambles are going south, move those accounts into taxpayer insured accounts, counting on us to keep them in business.

How many actually knew that mortgages were leveraged, sold off piecemeal?

OWS has shaken a great many out of their apathy, some are angry because now they have seen, some are angry because now they know, and some are just plain angry.

It's up to us to fix ourselves, fix our political process, to find solutions...OWS is doing it's job. It's making us all sit up and take notice.

[-] 2 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Such a great post Pandorak, thank you!

[-] -2 points by pinker (586) 2 years ago

But you are wrong about something here. It is YOU who has been apathetic. Half of the US population has been in tune and trying. What has the other half been doing all this time? Because you have only just woken up, does not mean the rest of us have been sleeping. Good God. I'm a Democrat who has studied and voted in every election since I turned 18. If the other half had been doing something besides shopping or copping out (it's not like my vote will make a difference, right?), then perhaps people would have had a bit more control.

I do hope this wakes the younger generation up to the fact that participation is not just a right, it's an obligation.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

That is a common misconception. That primary problem with our FPTP election process and the ineffective management of gerrymandering have made the system actually guarantee a minority rule. Tight margins of victory have forced the remaining two parties to be nearly identical. That is why they constantly bicker about issues like abortion, to give us the impression that a difference remains.

The citizens have suspected for a long time and know they are coming to terms with this fact. I continue to vote, but I am not fooled for one second by the whole "every vote counts" nonsense. Don't fool yourself either. Obama, whom I voted for, was the final straw that opened peoples eyes. Real change is impossible without drastic reform.

[-] 1 points by PandoraK (1678) 2 years ago

Hon, I usually take pains to make sure it is understood the words, you, we, us are generic and not directed at any individual, I apologize if in this case I did not do that.

I have never been apathetic, I've always paid attention and have done what I could and should.

[-] -1 points by pinker (586) 2 years ago

Hon? Do you mind?

[-] 1 points by PandoraK (1678) 2 years ago

The 'hon' was also meant generically.

[-] 1 points by gestopomilly (497) 2 years ago

the corporations intend for those living conditions to become the norm for america. we have to eliminate foriegn welfare before we end up just like them

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Yes they do. If anyone doubts they can google information about the Florida tomato growers, as a start. The fact that they allow this treatment already, in foreign factories, is proof they do care one lick about human suffering.

[-] -2 points by pinker (586) 2 years ago

Then why not act more swiftly and with goals and direction? Your tactics are childish I believe. Get your points out there and make things happen. We get that you know what's going on. Point made. Now make something happen via direct action rather than passivity.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

I disagree wholeheartedly. Check your premis. What is the use demanding change from a system the does not even acknowledge or accept responsibility? You know what that would lead to? Empty promises, false support and ultimately back to the status quo. I think America is status quo'ed out.

[-] -1 points by pinker (586) 2 years ago

So what you are saying is that it is futile? Then what are you trying to do?

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

I have stopped making demands from a system incapable or unwilling to address them. I choose not to sanction their power of indifference.

[-] 0 points by pinker (586) 2 years ago

So what you are trying to do is quit making demands?

[-] 0 points by Killumination (80) from Los Angeles, CA 2 years ago

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[-] 0 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago
[-] 0 points by MBJ (96) 2 years ago

It's very difficult to debate an entity with no stated positions or platform.

I am very intrigued by any efforts to reshape the funding of elections, and for reform of the relationship between government and the banking industry. That is what I hoped occupy was all about.

But, absent any clear voice to the contrary, I can only assume that ows also supports abandonment of capitalism, disdain for all institutions including police, defaulting on personal debt, socialism/communism, and, of all the childish ideas, direct democracy.

It's sometimes interesting to read the views here; a few are insightful and worthy of consideration, but they are lost in all the sophomoric rantings.

Furthermore, I don't think simply "occupying" is a viable means of changing anything. I know I'll be pummeled for saying so, and I am no part of it, but ows could learn a lot from what the Tea Party did - organization, issue discipline, and working within the system.

[-] 1 points by Democracydriven (658) 2 years ago

"It's very difficult to debate an entity with no stated positions or platform" (you words)

Then why do you feel compelled to debate? You are playing into their hands. You and others are bringing the problems to the surface and creating debate with your assumptions.

Do you see the genius in how this movement works.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

I'm not sure if you are quoting me or someone else, but I will respond. Our intentions are clear - end the corruption that has hijacked the pocketbooks and political freedom of the vast majority of Americans. Specific examples have already been given, and as a citizen you already know the names. Is this not enough?

Sure there are plenty of other things wrong going on, and they will be addressed in time. Our intentions are already known, our silence indicates our unwillingness to negotiate. No we will not accept a little bit of corruption because your ol' buddies at Goldman helped you get elected. We are through with that.

[-] 1 points by Democracydriven (658) 2 years ago

The post you resonded to wasn't directed toward you. It was MBJ

I like your message and how well you present it. Keep up the good post. I am sure there are plenty of others that like your clarity and straignt forwardness

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Please see my post below regarding demands. OWS certainly does not support abondoning capitalism, etc. The vast majority of OWS protesters are calling out the neosocialistic corporatism that exists. I actually share many views with the tea party.

You might not remember the ads on every major news outlet, regarding the tea party when it first emerged, but I do. One in particular sticks in my head, msnbc ran an ad blaring "the tea party, who are they and should they be a cause for concern?" as overweight, middle aged men with assault rifles and fatigues jumped over barricades, militia style. That is precisely what is going on here, today. Anyone else remember those?

[-] 1 points by daddyo14171 (48) 2 years ago

Well said...

I was drawn in by the anti corruption and crony capitalism aspects of the original occupation announcement. Perhaps it's due to information overload but that message is becoming so diluted with radical individual agendas that I'm having a hard time taking anything on this forum or the conduct at the protests very seriously. I usually find myself poking fun at the premise of it all more often than not which really isn't fair to the passionate.

Even the 99 percent declaration circling around is so broad in it's scope and jumbled in it's wording that I can't bring myself to sign it. However, it is good to see enthusiasm, activism and rational discussion at times. It beats apathy any day of the week.

[-] 2 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

That is not actually the case. A handful of people are continuously posting misinformation to this forum in an organized fashion. My experience has been that this movement is far more organized and cohesive than CNN Inc gives credit.

[-] 1 points by daddyo14171 (48) 2 years ago

That isn't the diluted message I was referring to. Those are easy enough to spot and ignore.

Examples I'm referring to are the excessive list of demands or topics that came out during October after initially citing corporate greed and removing the money from politics as the reason for protesting.

The difference in approaches between the regional Occupy groups (closing down a port vs. occupying a site of corporate symbolism), mixed messages regarding violence, a lack of defined progression in terms of goals etc...

[-] 2 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Well the country IS pretty diverse. Reading between the lines shows me a common theme. People are disenfranchised and feel that the system is no longer representative of them any longer. This could obviously be due to various reasons, I think the general consensus is that we have been sold out. Different people respond in different ways. This effort is unifying them, maybe not in talking points, but in sentiment. Now that this unification has begun, solutions are being put on the table. Look for change soon.

[-] 1 points by ryancozzens (32) 2 years ago

I am working on two amendments, 28 an 29. One would create a campaign finance system that does not favor those with more money. Another would create an environment where any group would have the same chance to lobby and the largest corporations. I will be unveiling these this winter and traveling with the campaign trail next spring to rally support.

Please Follow Me on Twitter @ryan_cozzens

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Sounds great, would you be willing to take a moment and share it here? Thank you.

[-] 1 points by ryancozzens (32) 2 years ago

This is the framework for 28 (campaign finance):

Under no circumstances may a candidate for any federal office receive private funding.

All campaigning must be done with public funds. These funds will be accumulated by an optional addition to your income tax form allowing a donations of x amount. This amount will be equal to the current working wages for a day ($/hr * 8). (this way in theory any employed American can donate one days pay annually). The total collected amount will be cut in half, with half being divided evenly amongst the primary candidates for any party meeting the requirements to be placed on the income tax option form. The other half will be given to the parties primary winner for the general election.

Any group wishing to create a federally recognized political party can do so by acquiring signatures of registered voters equaling x% (2 maybe?) of all votes cast in the previous election. That party is then responsible for the funds that are brought in and may disperse them as they see fit between the 3 elections for federal office (Senate, House, and President). They must however be evenly distributed amongst the candidates for any particular office, meaning a party cannot choose amongst itself which candidate receives the most money, but they can choose which political office they spend more on.

All advertisements mentioning a candidates name, likeness or trademarked slogan must be accounted for. And any money not used be placed back into the federal budget at the end of each year, upon which time all parties receiving proper support will recieve their annual public stipend.

The lobby amendment (29) is still in the beta phase. I would like to find wording that allows lobbying, but does not make it easier for more money to equal a louder voice.

[-] 0 points by IChowderDown (110) from Dallas, TX 2 years ago

Great stuff. Maybe lobbyists Must give 30 day notice and provide a public presentation to the politicians that choose to sit in and say x amount of the public can sit in by a first serve first view basis, or maybe like a lottery. All must be transparent and for each public member gets a 1 one vote and something a like a 3 or whatever point vote for the elected official. Private lobbying is 25 years of jail time. Heck I believe Obama made or wants to build a "Prolonged Detention" aka pre-crime, ya like the movie minority report. Don't believe it or not then view it here: http://dotsub.com/view/cfad3ce8-8b80-4981-ba6b-f48f184d6712 Anyway s you are in my view on the right path.

[-] -2 points by raines (699) 2 years ago

"occupy" is a misnomer, what they're about is,...........Disrupt.

[-] 0 points by dthompson (79) from New York, NY 2 years ago

My problem with Occupy is the complete absence of an electoral strategy. Practically speaking there is only so long that a large group of people can remain camped in a city park. Meanwhile, no speciific issues are being advanced. What exactly is the long term plan here?

[-] 2 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Make demands to whom? This movement is calling out that our demands do not matter, our best interests do not matter. To stand in a room full of thieves and demand your wallet back does nothing other than amuse and empower them. We all have demanded for far too long to no avail. It is up to us now, we are on our own.

Electoral strategy? In a First to Pass The Post (FPTP) system, such as we have, that process is broken. In every statistical model ever run, the system ALWAYS refines to two parties who are fundamentally the same. The spoiler effect prevents us from voting for who we really want, because that would only assure an opposition victory (Nader, anyone?) There is no electoral strategy, because it does not matter!

We can only camp for so long you say? The movement grows larger everyday. I think we might be here for a while.

[-] 0 points by IChowderDown (110) from Dallas, TX 2 years ago

Correct. My view is: you can't heal a broken system, you need to built one to replace it. The two party system truly is a one system. They know how to split the people from each other. The polarization is greater then ever and is the greatest distraction from facts/ the while a rouge goverment is looting the people for Wall Street, bankers, the super elite. I read a post that said strike the iron while it's hot. A nerve is struck in the upper league. They will fight like hell so that this movement dies, or an other group that challenges them. It's best to make something out of this now. The problem is dire, not shity. They will impose Martial Law if need be, so don't give them the upper hand to them when while more people go hungry. No food for a while makes people fight. The current President and surprisingly the current one is is destroying the constitution. I have done some research and my God, wow, very scary stuff, and it's not just the US, it's in many other nations. Nuff said.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

While I agree that we have struck a nerve, I do not believe we are at the point of trashing the entire system and starting anew. The changes that need to happen, though very powerful, are not actually "huge" changes.

For instance, to reform the election process, there are several other very good models which would more accurately represent the population in government. All of these could be implemented with our present voting apparatus. That in and of itself would be huge.

Secondly, the corporate/political corruption engine could be halted (in part by the above example) with a few changes to legislation. This would in turn lead to a more proactive and productive government, with the best interests of the PEOPLE in mind. Prosecuting corporate criminals must be priority number 1.

What you are speaking of is very extreme and I do not feel necessary. At this point, the changes needed are very simple ones.

[-] 0 points by dthompson (79) from New York, NY 2 years ago

If your objective is to completely tear down the American system of government and replace it with something else, then you don't have a chance in hell of achieving your objective because 99% of the Ameircan population does not support this. Please stop wasting our municipal tax dollars on your fantasy and go home.

If you are willing to work within the system for change, then the tea party offers a pretty good model strategically speaking. Start at the local level, not at the Presidential level. But again, this isn't going to happen from your tent.

If you mean the two parties are the same relative to a socialist on one side and a fascist on the other then yeah, they are, but within the spetrum of ideologies within which 99% of the population falls, there are real differences between the parties, which is why we have gridlock. The parties are, however, good at taking on this issue positions that the electorate cares about, so if it is banking reform you want, focus on that and build up enough support and I assure the Dems will begin to reflect your views.

Also, if you aren't affecting the change you want it could just be that not enough other people agree with you.

To your last point, I don't know on what basis you believe the emovement is growing larger. It certainly isn't growing more popular after the Oakland fiasco, the death in Vancover, the sexual assault in NYC, etc. As more of this stuff happens, sooner or later the patience of the general public is going to wear out and the police will roll you up. Deep down you have to know this is going to happen. Let's hope it does befor anyone else is raped or freezes to death.

[-] 2 points by tehm (32) from Knoxville, TN 2 years ago

While there are real differences between the two parties they are differences on what is essentially "fluff" (at least at the moment) and which can therefor be used to divide us.

Example 1: Are you pro-women's rights or are you pro-life? Are you for fetal stem-cell research or against it? Do you believe that stimulus can create jobs or can this function only be created by tax incentives given to the private sector?

These are legitimate differences between the two parties (in general) and these also happen to be 50:50 issues. That is 50% are for one side, 50% are for the other.

Second Example: Do you agree with Citizen's United? Did you agree to the bail outs of major banks during 2008? Do you believe that today's definition of "lobbying" (with the corporate jets and the hookers and blow...) should be a legal practice?

These are things that both sides of the aisle can get behind but which I have to believe (for fear of completely losing my faith in the US populace) are 99:1 issues.

Where are our candidates fighting for the 99% here? I can think of only a handful. (And they're all considered fringe. Ron Lawl, Dennis Kucinich, Bernie Sanders, etc...)

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Great points!

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Fair enough. I don't believe it would even be possible to tear the system down and start over. There are some pretty basic, but oh so important, changes the system needs to make before they could even address the grievances.

In my opinion, the federal government needs to show some initiative pursuing, prosecuting and penalizing those responsible for the mortgage meltdown. I was in the business at the time and there were many of us very vocal about those investor-only loan programs being pushed on unwitting consumers. The would be a place to start in good faith to all Americans. Whether you were foreclosed on or not, you were effected by that. Hedging bets against packages of risky portfolios, using the publics 401k's is fraud outright.

Next of course would be to address the corruption involved in politics in the form of campaign funding reform, the FPTP election system which only truly accomadates two parties (see below) and the rampant gerrymandering of district lines.

That would be a good start.

[-] 1 points by dthompson (79) from New York, NY 2 years ago

I would dearly love to see some in the financial services industry behind bars. Perhapse morre importantly I would love to see the Volker rule and other policies addressing too big to fail get inacted.

What California did with the judicial redrawing of districts is a good start on election reform.

[-] 1 points by ryancozzens (32) 2 years ago

If nothing else they are creating a Forum like this country has never seen.

[-] -1 points by stevo (314) 2 years ago

There is no middle ground. You are liberals, progressives, communists, and anarchists..rooting for revolution and dismantling America into your socialist vision.

There is nothing to discuss. We will never let you take this country the way of Europe. It's a epic failure.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

What was that line from Borat? NOT! Oh yeah that one. Do you always make fraudulent statements without first checking facts? You obviously did not come here with any intention other than closing your eyes and ears and shouting what you had to say. Try listening once in a while, you may find it refreshing! :)

[-] 0 points by stevo (314) 2 years ago

Which was not correct? You're NOT liberals...communists, anarchists?...which one

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

None, any more so than the average demographics. That's what happens when you you live in a politically free country, people form opinions different than your own. I, myself, am a moderate capitalist (capitalist economic philosophy, who respects the importance of checks and balances). A balanced system takes the good from all sides and discards the bad.

I like economic freedom, yet am able to recognize that controls are important to prevent corruption. I like personal freedom and the freedom of speech, yet I am able to understand when that is and is not appropriate ("Fire in a theater, "bomb" at an airport).

[-] -1 points by Richardgates (133) 2 years ago

The censorship has become overwhelming.

[-] -1 points by RexDiamond (585) from Idabel, OK 2 years ago

How about you be more honest about the movement's origin and intentions? Keep in mind most people already know. Bullshit will be smelled.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

Well I don't have the same magic crazy-crystals to rub on my privates, as you do. I'm taking my aluminum foil helmet off for exactly 30 seconds to receive your secret communique. Ready, set TRANSMIT! Oh, oooh, OH! What? Ok that's just weird. Ya think? Ewww Rex, heavens sake. I'm ending transmission.

[-] -1 points by smartguy (180) 2 years ago

A good start would be losing the ego trip, lies and quit telling people that you represent 99% of the population, because you don't. How would you feel if the tea party made that claim?

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

I actually share many views of the tea party, personally. This is not an attempt to start a new political party, as the tea party is trying to do.

This movement, to me, simply points out the highly disproportionate capital accessibility that has occurred on a rapidly refining basis. More specifically that 1% holds a disproportionate sway of as much as 99% of all capital in this country. Even more specifically 0.1% controls or posses 99.9%. Even worse is that as much as 40% (some estimate higher) of all liquid "currency" has been taken out of the markets and is not accessible to the economy for production and new wealth creation. Going a step further, many believe that through systematic corruption and intentional oversight, this was allowed to happen and those responsible are not being held accountable. I.e. Mortgage backed securities and hedging. I could literally write twenty more pages on just a list of grievances. You have to be aware of at least of few of them.

The point of this movement is to make it clear to these criminals, we know what they have done and are doing and we are taking action if our elected officials can't or won't.

[-] 1 points by gestopomilly (497) 2 years ago

exactly.. they have dried up all the cash flow

[-] -1 points by CoffeeKicked (12) 2 years ago

You guys demand NOTHING. You can't be taken seriously without demands. There is no leader... sorry, impossible to have a movement without a leader. You guys stink. You guys are homeless, shitting in the street. You guys are breaking laws

If you want to be taken seriously, be legal!

[-] 3 points by nucleus (3291) 2 years ago

Making demands recognizes authority. Recognizing corrupt authority legitimizes tyranny.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

And another!

[-] 2 points by ARod1993 (2420) 2 years ago

Here's the thing; the actual physical occupation only exists to serve as an issue to create these kinds of discussions. The people living in the parks by themselves aren't enough that their mere presence in the park is going to change the way DC or Wall Street does business. However, their actions were enough to make another whole group of people sit up and take notice of what's been going on over the past few years and the past few decades.

Once people start waking up and paying attention to things like income inequality, taxation inequality, and corporate misbehavior these things become actual issues, which people have to care about because a lot of people around them do. Once there's enough peer pressure to care about these things you're going to wind up with discussions and debates popping up all over the place and hopefully a national consensus will evolve on how to deal with these issues. Of course, we're not going to go away and we'll stick around to push for action on these issues, but sticking around in Zuccotti isn't all we're doing.

As far as violence, shitting in the street, etc. I've already spoken at length about how that should be handled. I don't give a damn whether they're police-sponsored troublemakers or our troublemakers; if they get violent or out of hand they need to be forcibly unmasked, photographed, and handed over to the cops, and the photo needs to go in a publicly viewable database of troublemakers banned from marching with us. Either way it should work, and forcible unmasking by angry men will probably include enough of a beating that neither anarchists nor police infiltrators will be particularly enthused about causing trouble at marches again.

[-] 1 points by gestopomilly (497) 2 years ago

the government itself behaves illegally and you want to play by their rules?

[-] 1 points by nucleus (3291) 2 years ago

When laws have been corrupted to benefit a few, the system of law has no value.

[-] 1 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

That is a very good point.

[-] 1 points by CoffeeKicked (12) 2 years ago

So, no laws have value. Laws always favor one over another.

[-] 1 points by nucleus (3291) 2 years ago

A law that allows GE to pay no taxes is a corrupt law. A law that allows a millionaire to pay less tax than a working man is corrupt. A law that allows the government to violate constitutional rights is corrupt. When access to legal representation is limited to those who can afford it, there is no legal protection for those who cannot. These are just some corruptions of law.

[-] -1 points by owschico (295) 2 years ago

I disagree because this movement is misguided, an example is the censorship of Dr. PauI on this forum

[-] 1 points by PandoraK (1678) 2 years ago

When nearly every other posting or reply became a campaign poster for one candidate, yes censorship of that name is proper, this is not a campaign platform.

There are enough who are rude, enough who are crude and enough who post nonsense to wade through to the concerns others post, adding in a political campaign style post numerous times becomes too much.

[-] 0 points by owschico (295) 2 years ago

Just for the record you support censorship

[-] 1 points by PandoraK (1678) 2 years ago

Just for the record you support subverting a public communication medium for political purposes.

You want a political forum? You want to promote 'your guy'? Create one, advertise it and it too will get 'hits' and page rank.

[-] -2 points by LoveToLickCum (54) 2 years ago

Can I take a dump on your head? Thanks!

[-] -2 points by LoveToLickCum (54) 2 years ago

Uh......no...... Fuck off

[-] 2 points by ThisIsNotCapitalism (156) from Redmond, WA 2 years ago

How did the mods miss you? You are one of the worst offenders? Not much more expressive than a caged monkey either.

[-] -2 points by GetAnOccupaton (0) 2 years ago

I'm a detractor because OWS is producing nothing and consuming much. OWS is asking for gloves, socks, tents, blankets food, etc - all of which are scarce and desperately needed by the poor and homeless this time of the year. OWS needs to provide their own supplies and not take from the mouths of the poor.

[-] 2 points by gestopomilly (497) 2 years ago

there is a trillion dollars a year going for foreign welfare and you want to complain about fellow americans taking from american poor? send your complaint to the foreign policy makers that will let an american become destitute while handing out my tax money to other countries.