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Forum Post: EVERYONE IS ASKING "How do we constructively confront this powerful force. HERE'S HOW. . .

Posted 2 years ago on Sept. 27, 2011, 2:48 p.m. EST by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR SPECIFIC DEMANDS FOR WASHINGTON DC: https://occupywallst.org/forum/specific-demand-and-action-list-for-washington-dc/

"Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks to so dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored. My citing the creation of tension as part of the work of the nonviolent-resister may sound rather shocking. But I must confess that I am not afraid of the word "tension." I have earnestly opposed violent tension, but there is a type of constructive, nonviolent tension which is necessary for growth. Just as Socrates felt that it was necessary to create a tension in the mind so that individuals could rise from the bondage of myths and half-truths to the unfettered realm of creative analysis and objective appraisal, we must we see the need for nonviolent gadflies to create the kind of tension in society that will help men rise from the dark depths of prejudice and racism to the majestic heights of understanding and brotherhood.

The purpose of our direct-action program is to create a situation so crisis-packed that it will inevitably open the door to negotiation. I therefore concur with you in your call for negotiation."

Martin Luther King, Jr. from his "Letter from the Birmingham Jail" FULL TEXT: http://abacus.bates.edu/admin/offices/dos/mlk/letter.html (note the section about the "appalling silence of the good people". As relevant today as it was 40+ years ago. King was a RADICAL. The "Letter from the Birmingham Jail" is not the sanitized cuddly King they roll out on "I have a dream" day. Read this letter. It will blow you away with its strength and timeliness. http://abacus.bates.edu/admin/offices/dos/mlk/letter.html

Many have said these things but let me try to collect them here in one spot. We are gaining momentum and the world is waking up to this incredible protest. We have remained non-violent which is important above all else. Many in America are sympathetic and are grateful that we are taking a stand.

But occupying the park and marching by themselves are not enough. The world and our supporters will get energized if we get tactical and take action. Wall St. runs Washington. Going to Washington is important and lots can happen there, but let's not leave unfinished business in New York. POWER responds to POWER:

FIRST - The videos of police using brutal physical force and pepper spray against peaceful protestors do an incredible job displaying the brutality of the power structure. King, Gandhi, Abbey Hoffman and countless others who are / were professionals at non-violent action and peaceful provocation would absolutely be calling a press conference denouncing these actions and showing these videos at the press conference. This puts the police on the defensive. Kudos to those who made the upcoming press conference a reality.

SECOND - King and Gandhi were successful in part because they were experts at tactical non-violence. We can follow in their footsteps by blocking the entrances to Wall St. offices this week. As we know, police have set up what amounts to a Green Zone around Wall St. But the suits have to enter somewhere. They have to leave the public street and enter that Green Zone somewhere. That point where public meets private should be the very center of our focus for non-violent resistance and occupation. Even as the location of that intersection shifts, we can always identify it. By definition there must always be an entrance and that entrance should be our focus.

THIRD - OUR ONE DEMAND - We should make one single demand: "Shut Down Wall St." Why are we shutting down Wall St.? "Because Wall St. is hurting Americans, hurting citizens of the world and ruining our environment."

When they fail to shut down Wall St., we do it for them in a non-violent way using peaceful non-violent resistance. And when the press asks, why.... We answer "We shut down Wall St. for a day so America and the world could breathe for a day, be free of the plutocracy for a day, be free of the exploitation for a day, be free of the greed for a day. Many will ask "What good is a day?" and we'll answer: "You call it a day. We call it a pretty good start. If someone has their foot on your neck for years and years and you non-violently force that foot to be removed for a day, that allows you breathing room for all sorts of options.

FOURTH - HOW - To shut it down, we need human chains of 30, 50, 90, 150, 300 people linked together (think zip ties) blocking the various entrances. The police will find it almost impossible to deal with these human blockades. This will create the largest pedestrian traffic jam New York has ever seen and the people who have been trading on the world's misery for so long simply won't be able to get in to do it that day. It will help if we don't go in as a march but instead go dark as regular old NYC pedestrians from all directions and then show up there at the same time.

I am aware that now protestors have found access to a large cache of civilian clothes that will allow many of the new people arriving to blend in (suits, ties, the works). This new donation will make it much easier to blend in up until the point of protest. And it will also gum up the works even more, making it easier to shut down Wall St. because now the police can't tell who's who and they need to stop EVERYONE, even the suits. Their Green Zone will then break down.

FIFTH - THE RESULT - The result of this direct non-violent action, this just protest, is that the front page of newspapers around the world will show images peaceful American youth shutting down the financial district that has wrought so much destruction around the world for so long. They'll be inspired by the ingenuity, the success and the courage and the movement will grow EXPONENTIALLY. Gandhi and King have given us the playbook. It's peaceful non-resistance. And it works.

We have the stage but that's not enough. It's time for direct action. It's time for civil disobedience to bring the truth into the light. They are not equipped to deal with it. They don't know what to do with non-violence because all the cameras are rolling and whatever they do makes them look bad. We will confound them if we take direct action.

The spirit of Abbey Hoffman, Martin L King and Gandhi is with us. It's time to use their playbook. It's time for ACTION!!! Civil disobedience. Our disobedience will be consistently blocking the entrances to Wall Street’s offices. They will find us coming together to block these entrances wherever they move them. Because there is always an intersection where public meets private. No matter where they move it, we’ll be there. We will be there. WATCH THIS VIDEO AND GET INSPIRED! This says it all!!! http://youtu.be/lqN3amj6AcE

32 Comments

32 Comments


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[-] 1 points by mitaows (7) 2 years ago

<>End DEBT-Based Privatised Money & Banking <>Bring FED under Treasury <>End Fractional Reserve Banking to Restore Democracy <>Time Limit on Corporate Charter <>Pass Unconditional Basic Income/Social Grant for all (end welfare) <>Start Public Banking (state and local level, so profit stays in) <>Invest in Local food, small business, coop and Credit Union <>Local Health benefit/Insurance, Complementary health <>Identify and support grassroot actions/community leaders <>Work for preserving ecology, peace, non-violent foreign and domestic policy <>Human scale economy, dignity of all labor <>Stop cruelty to animals and prisoners <>Educate yourself & Others cheers <>http://conscious-capitalism.blogspot.com

[-] 1 points by AriaLittlhous (18) 2 years ago

http://coupmedia.org/occupywallstreet/occupy-wall-street-official-demands-2009

and have a clear set of demands, see above link. Include rewriting the tax code from scratch.

[-] 1 points by joogle (55) 2 years ago

The 8th USA Parliament tore up our non profit corporate bylaws, and we adopted rules for a socialistic corporation which are our 36 rules.

http://usparliament.org/rules.php

Corporations are like small governments and can be improved. For example in Germany, corporations of 5000 or more are required to have their BoD made up of 50% workers from the various levels of the corporation from janiter and up, and 50% is made up of the shareholders.

Plus, in Germany there is a semi-proportional representation election system. Mixed member proportional (MMP) with a 5% minimum threshold for all parties.

While I'm opposed to MMP and the 5% threshold, the corporate laws are moving in the right direction, and the simi-proportional election system does allow for Labor, Green and Socialistic political parties to work together to govern.

The two-party system thrives on conflict like strikes from labor unions and confrontation to gain power. That's not pleasing.

The All Party System (and independents) thrives on working together.

[-] 1 points by kdsteph7 (1) 2 years ago

What is the desired result?

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR SPECIFIC DEMANDS FOR WASHINGTON DC: https://occupywallst.org/forum/specific-demand-and-action-list-for-washington-dc/

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

There are clearly people across America who know in their gut that something is wrong here where the financial sector shuffling paper makes up 40% of GDP, where unemployment is high but corporations are at the same time riding high. Something needs to spark and inspire people to speak up, emerge from their silence and feeling of defeat and realize.... "HEY, Wwwwwait a second. We're the 99% and they're the 1%. We have the votes. 1% can't rule 99%." Direct action can help awaken people from their slumber. It has direct and indirect results. It worked for millions of people under King and Gandhi. We need to all read up on their methods because they are as fresh and radical today as they were decades ago.

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

Shut down Wall St. for a day. Showing it can be done has enormous symbolic power. During and after the process of doing so, the world and national will become extremely interested (despite their slanted take) in the reasons. The answers (please reread them again above) along with a posted list of the 50 worst corporate crimes in the last 10 years (borrow from films "The Corporation" "Capitalism a Love Story" and "The Corporation") will help people around the country learn the truth about many of the corporations they support. When they learn the hard truths, they too will begin to vote with their dollars. The other benefit is that numbers swell physically in NYC and this ratchets up the pressure on Wall St. and DC as the movement progresses.

[-] 1 points by gawdoftruth (3698) from Santa Barbara, CA 2 years ago

Thats not a how its a formula for failure. Whats needed is a paradigm shift. How you confront those powerful forces ? not meaningful in the streets. Its an ideological and propaganda war they are waging against the people. Republicans by definition are either patently evil or duped. enlighten the dupes and that leaves less than one percent who would cling to that ideology. The REAL "HOW"; Create and form open source think tanks, form a political party, and kick out the bums in the elections, using our better solutions, are actual science instead of opinion centered propaganda, our real solutions instead of our mere social and civil parasitism. Protesting in the streets is utterly meaningless compared to facilitating a paradigm shift.

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

Non-violent active resistance wasn't meaningless to millions of people in the south who got their civil rights as a results of peaceful direct action. It also wasn't meaningless to the millions upon millions of Indians ruled by a relatively few British (hmmmmm...... sound familiar 99%??). Gandhi beat the British wearing a bed sheet using non-violent direct action. This stuff is very very powerful. And it will increase the number of participants in this movement DRAMATICALLY.

[-] 1 points by gawdoftruth (3698) from Santa Barbara, CA 2 years ago

and the USA spent the last 50 years figuring out how to make such protests irrelevant. And without the substance underneath, there is no chance at all of meaningful change. Increasing the number of participants is neat. If i could have had a hundred participants for a viral information internet revolution we could have done this years ago. All protesting is actually doing is giving you all the illusion of doing something, sucking up all your time, and operating as an excuse to prevent you from doing the ACTUAL WORK involved in social evolution.

[-] 1 points by MKittles (36) from Maralinga, SA 2 years ago

Just giving people information won't necessarily convince them to believe it, or use it. A physical protest has a defiant quality which touches people (at least those who can be convinced).

[-] 1 points by joogle (55) 2 years ago

Personally, I'm more touched by 125+-way debate, where people are debating and voting on ideas, than I am by a crowd/mob, trying to use chaotic or organized force against others.

[-] 1 points by gawdoftruth (3698) from Santa Barbara, CA 2 years ago

depends on the quality of the information. Past a certain threshold, information density can become viral.

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

I completely agree. There are clearly people across America who know in their gut that something is wrong here where the financial sector shuffling paper makes up 40% of GDP, where unemployment is high but corporations are at the same time riding high. Something needs to spark and inspire people to speak up, emerge from their silence and feeling of defeat and realize.... "HEY, Wwwwwait a second. We're the 99% and they're the 1%. We have the votes. 1% can't rule 99%." Direct action can help awaken people from their slumber. It has direct and indirect results. It worked for millions of people under King and Gandhi. We need to all read up on their methods because they are as fresh and radical today as they were decades ago.

[-] 1 points by gawdoftruth (3698) from Santa Barbara, CA 2 years ago

HOW we speak up is important. screaming on a bull horn may be therapuetic, but 20 days from now what was said is lost. posting it on a wiki on the other hand keeps it as a treasure. If you value your own ideas, you need to start organizing them meaningfully instead of throwing them away in the streets.

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

I disagree. I don't think your laptop revolution can succeed on its own. It's good to have source material and places to go. But you're not going to change society by ONLY basking in the eerie glow of laptop. There's nothing haphazard about direct action. It's very very tactical. And it MOVES people the way a wiki entry never could.

[-] 1 points by ZinnReader (92) from Encinitas, CA 2 years ago

Excellent post! As King said, there is tremendous power in nonviolent resistance.

"The end of violence or the aftermath of violence is bitterness. The aftermath of nonviolence is reconciliation and the creation of a beloved community."

http://teachingamericanhistory.org/library/index.asp?document=1131

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR SPECIFIC DEMANDS FOR WASHINGTON DC: https://occupywallst.org/forum/specific-demand-and-action-list-for-washington-dc/

[-] 1 points by npowell85 (249) from Montana City, Mt 2 years ago

people continually fail to see that you, by not having a clear single message/demand, are not taking direct action. You are saying "we are unhappy" and expecting you government to read your minds to figure out how to fix it. That is why you are being marginalized and ignored. Not because the media doesn't see, or chooses not to see, but because what they see lacks definition. Get clear about your intentions and you will be taken seriously; if its not too late already.

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR SPECIFIC DEMANDS FOR WASHINGTON DC: https://occupywallst.org/forum/specific-demand-and-action-list-for-washington-dc/

[-] 1 points by joogle (55) 2 years ago

Votes cast as proof electing an advanced all-party (and independents) team, are a very concrete message as well as a road map and guide for actions.

Look at the USA Parliament's Independent Expenditure, Foreign, or Economics Ministries' decisions for example:

http://usparliament.org/indexministry.php

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

Do not underestimate the power of symbolism and where it can lead.

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

There are clearly people across America who know in their gut that something is wrong here where the financial sector shuffling paper makes up 40% of GDP, where unemployment is high but corporations are at the same time riding high. Something needs to spark and inspire people to speak up, emerge from their silence and feeling of defeat and realize.... "HEY, Wwwwwait a second. We're the 99% and they're the 1%. We have the votes. 1% can't rule 99%." Direct action can help awaken people from their slumber. It has direct and indirect results. It worked for millions of people under King and Gandhi. We need to all read up on their methods because they are as fresh and radical today as they were decades ago.

[-] 1 points by npowell85 (249) from Montana City, Mt 2 years ago

Direct action does not rely on symbolism. Direct action means confront those who are the source of your problem, and tell them directly what your problem is, how you propose to fix it, and what the resulting world should look like. THAT is how you gain support for your cause, and THAT is how MLK and Gandhi did what they did. Not by beating around the bush.

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR SPECIFIC DEMANDS FOR WASHINGTON DC: https://occupywallst.org/forum/specific-demand-and-action-list-for-washington-dc/

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

You and I just differ on that point. You think blockading Goldman Sachs is beating around the bush. I think it's pretty powerful image that raises a whole host of questions for Americans, good questions and good conversations. Like "Holy Cow, they have the place surrounded!" The physical aspect of it doesn't last of course but the image is burned in people's brains. It makes people less afraid when they see others who aren't afraid. And they start getting brave and asking questions of their employer.... and the broker..... and their elected representative.

[-] 1 points by npowell85 (249) from Montana City, Mt 2 years ago

Ok, Ill submit that if you could in fact blockade the Goldman Sachs building you could make a meaningful statement. However, from what I have seen so far, there is not even enough unity to get that done.

[-] 1 points by pedal (6) 2 years ago

i understand this is intended to be a leaderless protest but we know the names MLK and Ghandi for a very good reason. i agree with npowell: make the demands clear. and soon. choose a spokesperson (not a leader). otherwise the risk of having your message muddled is far too high and this will fail to go down in history as anything more than 'the incident in which a police officer maced some young women.'

[-] 1 points by npowell85 (249) from Montana City, Mt 2 years ago

good point... leadership doesn't have to be in the form of a group giving more authority to one individual, leadership is needed in this case but more in the sense of someone to organize the thoughts of the group and act as a spokesperson. There is no need to fear leadership when your leaders are truely appointed in a democratic fassion and when they always act in the best interest of the whole and not of the self. That is what is missing from our system, and it is because of greed.

[-] 1 points by pedal (6) 2 years ago

the schism begins: "Protest Police Harassment, Brutality & Attacks" at Zucotti Park. https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=263887383652185

[-] 1 points by gawdoftruth (3698) from Santa Barbara, CA 2 years ago

npowell; excellent post, i so agree!

[-] 1 points by GandhiKingMindsetResist (44) 2 years ago

PLEASE CLICK HERE FOR SPECIFIC DEMANDS FOR WASHINGTON DC: https://occupywallst.org/forum/specific-demand-and-action-list-for-washington-dc/