Posted 1 year ago on Feb. 23, 2012, 12:02 a.m. EST by BradB
from Washington, DC
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
Message to Occupy :: from http://www.the99declaration.org/message_to_occupy
The 99% Declaration and National General Assembly are not the product of any one person. These two ideas were developed by thousands of people from all over the world and they are good ideas. Not “good” as in “clever” but good for the betterment of our people who are suffering terribly. According to the 2010 census, 150,000,000 people live in poverty or in low-income households in the wealthiest, most prosperous country in history.
Everything we are accomplishing is due to the opportunity, provided by #OWS and the 99% Movement. This chance for massive grassroots change may never come again.
Citizens United, SOPA, NDAA, misuse of FISA and the Patriot Act have now changed the game and we must organize and act before corporations, who have now been deemed people, are permitted to consolidate their power to such a level that they will directly control the military. We already know they indirectly (if not directly) control the police. This not an alarmist or fantastic statement. Certain sections of the NDAA, signed into law by President Obama, permit the armed forces, historically barred from acting within the United States by the Posse Comitatus Act, to obtain military jurisdiction over American civilians. These new detention laws can deprive U.S. citizens of the protections guaranteed in the Bill of Rights, the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure and The Bail Reform Act which, until now, ensured that every citizen be timely brought before a neutral and detached magistrate to apprise the accused of the charges he or she is facing and immediately make a bail determination based on a list of objective factors. The NDAA denies access to counsel under the Sixth Amendment and effectively suspends the Writ of Habeas Corpus for Americans accused of being “belligerent” towards the United States. The supporters of this law claim it is necessary to maintain our national defense yet,“Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.” -British Prime Minister William Pitt the Younger.
The board members of this group cannot be Delegates nor do we have any say about what goes into the final petition of grievances. This group’s role is to hold an open and transparent election of 876 delegates to a National General Assembly and provide a venue in Philadelphia for the elected Delegates to meet and ratify a Petition for a Redress of Grievances as authorized by the First Amendment to the Constitution. The Board also acts as a “blind” trust, which receives donations that will not be disclosed to the Delegates so they are not influenced in any way when proposing or voting for grievances. Delegates may not take money from anyone except to pay for their expenses to and from Philadelphia. It is this model of a blind trust funded by the taxpayers that we seek to replace the current corrupt funding of political campaigns by corporations and other concentrations of great wealth.
It is critical to mention that The 99% Declaration’s requirement of a transparent election was never intended to be a slap in the face to #OWS and their use of direct democracy. In our view, an election representing all of the geographic sections of the country is necessary for the courts to compel the government to redress the grievances voted on by the National General Assembly in July. In the history of the use of the PETITION FOR REDRESS OF GRIEVANCES, the courts have rejected past petitions because they were not deemed sufficiently representative of the American people.
Therefore, we have required an election for a very specific legal reason: to give full force and effect to an important section of our Bill of Rights, which allow the PEOPLE to demand specific actions by their government. By using the very same geographic distributions the current corporate state uses to elect its representatives and keep them in power year after year, the government will be forced to redress the petition or suffer the electoral consequences.
When the petition is ratified in July, signed in front of Independence Hall and served on all three branches of government; all politicians who are running for office in 2012 will be asked their positions on the grievances and solutions listed in the petition. Should the politicians ignore the petition, Clause V of the declaration will be activated and the electoral revolution will begin. In 2014, candidates will be run in all 435 districts (and the 33 open senate seats) who will take a public pledge to immediately redress the grievances in the July 2012 National General Assembly petition.
The delegates will be elected in Spring 2012 and then work together to come up with grievances and solutions to be in the final petition. Between 7-2 and 7-4, the 876 delegates will then vote on each proposal one by one and decide what should be in this FIRST PETITION FOR REDRESS OF GRIEVANCES at this National General Assembly. We are suggesting ten or twelve points in this petition but the elected Delegates may include as many or as few as they so decide. There is no reason that this effort cannot continue parallel to and in synergy with #OWS’s continuing peaceful resistance to the corporate state that has insidiously stolen our democracy. #OWS has reawakened the American consciousness and gotten us off the couch, out the door and into the streets!
We call upon all of the Occupy General Assemblies to send us their ideas and suggestions for incorporation into the final petition. All are also welcome to become Delegate Candidates for the National General Assembly.