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Forum Post: Prison Reform, Economic Reform: Milk Not Jails

Posted 7 years ago on Sept. 9, 2012, 1:13 a.m. EST by Forrester (13)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

This article was taken from the newspaper, Metroccupied which is put out by an affinity group of OWS. There is no set schedule as to when the paper appears (money being the main factor), and this is only their second issue which dealt mostly with the prison industrial complex.

The urban-rural divide in New York State can seem stark. "Downstaters ae snobs. Upstaters are hicks." The convential wisdom states that the two groups couldn't be more separate.

The two are connected in surprising ways. New York city residents make up most of the people in state prisons, but 90% of the prisons are located outside the five boroughs. When New York City ships people upstate to be locked up - mostly for non-violent and drug offenses - it creates prison jobs in rural towns and subsidizes the rural economy. However this subsidy comes at a cost: urban neighborhoods lose able-bodied workers, community members, and family members.

New York City could instead be supporting a just and healthy industry--milk. Dairy farming is New York State's largest agricultural sector, accounting for over half of all food produced in the state. If urban New Yorkers, building on the vibrant "buy local" movement, purchase milk from local dairy farmers, New York state could build food jobs, not corrections jobs.

Milk Not Jails is a grassroots, volunteer-run campaign that works towards this goal in two ways. They work with up-state farmers who have signed a statement in support of prison reform and distribute and market their dairy products here in New York City (visit milknotjails.org and click on "shop" to learn how to buy). They also partner with food justice and prison justice activists to demand an incarceration policy that considers all residents of New York State.

Their work reveals that the divide between urban and rural communities is not so stark, afterall: both farmers and city dwellers would like to see an economy based on sending healthy milk into cities, instead of taking healthy young people out of them. Casimer Trybuskiewicz, a dairy farmer thirty miles outside of Buffalo, put it this way. "I hope for some kind of prison reform. To throw these young people in jail for 20 to 25 years for things like pot posession, it doesn't seem cost efficient. Maybe you could achieve the same ends in a different way."

The Metoccupied is a free paper which is distibuted in NYC, and it relies on donations of which 100% go towards production costs. To donate, contact metroccupied@gmail.com. Their web-site, metroccupied.com is not up yet, but they are also on facebook and Twitter.

Thanks, Odin



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[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

There is a community outside Rochester called Attica. I'm sure you've heard of the prison there. It does provide jobs there, but it's a shame how many are in there for drug nonsense and will be stripped of their rights when they are out.

[-] 2 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

Attica was where they had the riots years ago. While living in VT we were around 30 miles from Comstock/Great Meadows Correctional Facility in NY. I couldn't help but notice over the years the continuing expansion of that facility. Although I did not know much about it, I had heard they used to grow much of their food, but that program was stopped for some reason. The PIC is a scar on our society.

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 7 years ago

ye Gods - the world must be ending -
I agree with hchc !

legalize drugs - end the private prisons

[-] 0 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

It's scarey, isn't it? I've even been agreeing with VQ. Must be something in the air....eh? lol Odin

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

U really R a Bircher?

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago

Wow..... A link to a John Birch Society astro turf site.

Good reading for you, eh?

Propaganda you can live by?

If I could, I'd put this revelation at the top of the best comments.

I won't forget this.

[-] -1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

If you could do anything at all you would have been off your ass a long time ago....

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

U R a Bircher? Really? How screwed up R U ?

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

Regarless of the source, are we really sending troops into Guatemala?

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago


It does matter, Bircher.

It matters a lot.

Did you say the same thing about Mr. Ps newsletters, Bircher?

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

GEt a life Shooz, you pathetic excuse for an occupier.

Go to OccDetriot at least ONCE a month and then you can talk shit.

Until then, you are the typical internet nuisance that we all must put up with. The typical know-it-all. You are certainly much more familiar with Birch or whoever than I am. Perhaps thats your angle. Divide and discredit as usual.

What a hack.

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago


There's NO birchers at OccupyDetroit!!

You wouldn't last 5 seconds, bircher.

You're the biggest hack there is.

You love all that bigoted shit going on in Florida.

It's why you never mention it. Bircher!!!

[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago
[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Seriously? U R a Bircher?

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

Seroiusly, I have no idea what that site is or whatever.

I dont have a list of "bircher" sites on my hip. I came across it on facebook.

Is it true?

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

I think you would know whether or not U R a Bircher - why ask Me?

[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago
[-] 2 points by bensdad (8977) 7 years ago

nixons eternal war - we lost it - legalize drugs - period

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago


You've linked to it before liar!!!

Bircher! Seriously!



Co-opter!! Infiltrator!!!


[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

Wow, put down the beers little man...

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago

Drunken Bircher!!

Put down the hatred and bigotry...bircher!

Infiltartor!! Co-opter for the John Birch society!!

[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

hahah man you are drunk...

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago

I haven't had a drink in 10 years bircher.

Looks like you're the one with the fried brain cells anyway.

They'd have to be fried to be a bircher.

You know, one of the Kochs favorite charities.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 7 years ago

the drug war is just an excuse of US military aggression and intervention

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago

Fuck off bircher!

I don't care what else you ever say.

I don't care what else you link to, bircher.

Koch sympathizer!!

They probably paid to have it run on CBS bircher.

That's how propaganda works.....bircher.

Passer of partisan propaganda!!~!

Bircher!! fuck!

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago

John Bircher!!!!!

You ain't got another thing to say to me.


[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

soooooo dumb....

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Does trashy know about you? I can't wait to ask him/it.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Bircher? Really? Does that make you like an American Taliban or something?

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago


And you call me dumb?


[-] 0 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

Who would have ever thought as a kid that our country would become the number threat to peace, and civility?

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 7 years ago

This guy saw it coming:

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.

We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.
.............................................................................not very recently stated by D. D. E.

who was this novice ?

[-] 0 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

That was easy....no googling necessary. It was Dwight D. Eisenhower. Three months into his Presidency, this former Supreme Commander of Allied Forces in Europe during Worl War II, warned us of the corrupt influence of the MID. Then again in his farewell speech upon getting ready to leave office, he warned us again.

Eisenhower also set the stage for McCarthys demise, after MCS was the first (1950) to speak out against the reign of terror that McCarthy was promoting. Who was this person, and what was his/her speech called?

If you get this right, you get a one time pass, the next time you disagree with me, OK? ;-)

[-] 0 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 7 years ago

I guess if you were old enough you could see it coming...

Check this from a dude from OT..


[-] -1 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

I think that too many of us were involved in the day to day struggle to survive, and did not see it coming. The anger in that song is what we have nurture in others, and direct it towards this rotten system.

[-] 0 points by yobstreet (-575) 7 years ago

They still speak "European" in most of these communities. Is it any wonder they believe pot possession carries a 25 year sentence?

[-] -1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

Great ideas.

  • We should also change the drug laws as was attempted by Gov Cuomo and defeated by repubs in NY State Senate.

  • We should also move prisons downstate as we have begun to with child prisoners.

  • The Milk not Prisons project may also be more than milk and should reflect that since more & more people are Vegetarian, and pushing veggies is healthier than pushing liquid meat.

[-] 3 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

There has been a real push over the last few years to over-turn the Draconian Rockefeller drug laws. Have they gotten anywhwere with that?

Many communities upstate have been devastated by the effects of neoliberalism. There are many boarded-up old factories, and their are a lot of signs of poverty

The Milk Not Jails Program might not be the perfect example of what should be done, but it is a model of how grass-roots movements could begin to be effective. There are many veges, and vegans in this movement, and two of my daughters are also veges, and agree with you that milk is "liquid meat."

On Saturdays they have the Green Market in Union Square, where OWS has an info table set up. They also serve food there. A couple of times, I have purchased apple cider at the GM, and donated it to the OWS food table. It's not much, I know, but it is that kind of thing that we should all be doing

[-] -2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

No doubt. Excellent effort.

The effort against rockefeller drug laws are usually stopped by republicans in NYS who control the State Senate.

But we got pretty close this past session and may get somewhere next.

[-] 4 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

Thanks. Those draconian Rockefeller drug laws are a blight on our society. Many people, including politicians who years later admitted to doing drugs were able to go on and lead productive lives. Those who were caught though spent years, and years in prison. It is still going on, and it is really screwed up. Odin

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

It is the current method of oppressing the minority population.

Still ain't changed but if the people protest enough we WILL have the change we need.

[-] 2 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

To our disgrace, we in the middle-class have ignored the plight of the poor for far too long. It is only now when those difficulties have become our's as well, have we woken up.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

Only some of us!

[-] 2 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

Humbly and ashamedly, I cannot say it has been my entire adult life that I have realized this, but it would be safe to say for more than 30 years, I have empathized with the plight of the poor. My excuse...I have none

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

You don't need to provide an excuse. Everyone has baggage. Everyone can be better. Most people care sme, or want to. Not enough care enough.

That must grow. OWS has helped in that regard.& will continue to.

[-] 1 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

Agreed again, more caring is what is needed, and that in large part is what OWS is about. We're on a roll here.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

LOL. Planets are aligning boss!

[-] 1 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

Quit that "boss" shit, and they will stay aligned hopefully

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

no prob.

[-] -3 points by neutrino (-197) 7 years ago

Welcome back Odin! You're the man of a million monikers, but also the man of a million truths! Your words will always be heads above those of your dark nemesis DKAtoday. Truth prevails, letters to the president rot in waste baskets.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Trashy trashy trashy - what next you gonna be a series of quarks? Perhaps a Muon?

[-] -1 points by neutrino (-197) 7 years ago

Your sense of humor lacks pizazz. Your love for Obama makes you dull.

Next, I'll be a Gluon glued on you.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Read my latest open letter - maybe some one can tell you what it means as you seem to lack comprehension.

[-] -1 points by neutrino (-197) 7 years ago

I refuse to legitimize Obama by reading letters written to him by armchair slackivists who rally under the umbrella of OWS without understanding even the most basic principles of the protest. Partisan Powers is nearing the end of it's reign. You'll soon have to become a scribe to the president on another forum.

[-] -1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Like I said - you have no comprehension. You find a therapist yet(?) to help you build a bridge to reality?

[-] -1 points by neutrino (-197) 7 years ago

We are building A Bridge To The Ground. This site will become about OWS whether you and your Partisan Powers want it or not. Mark my words, in a few months there will be many Odins here telling their stories of protesting and ground occupations. Your Internet addiction and illusions will fade to dust. Perhaps you will then take a walk outside and protest for a change.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Again "YOU" need to build a bridge to the ground - the ground of reality - then perhaps you might - just might - make some progress on comprehension.

[-] -2 points by neutrino (-197) 7 years ago

Take a walk outside. Protest once in your life. Bring it to the streets and tells us about it. This is what this website was designed for. You have a body attached underneath your mind, take it out to taste the rain, don't stay in bed all day. The world is your oyster. Carpe Diem.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

You have done nothing to promote OWS activity on this site - you have been a constant thorn and irritant to this site. Got your new series of names all picked out? I am sure your tragic self will be getting booted soon - again - ad infinitude.

[-] -1 points by neutrino (-197) 7 years ago

I have done so much for OWS. You don't see because you love Obama not OWS. Telling you to get out of bed and start protesting is a huge contribution to OWS. Go outside. Get some sun. Protest for all of us. Be OWS for one day.

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 7 years ago

Don't try to tell me what this forum site is all about because you seem to not have a clue as to how to use it's full potential.

[-] -2 points by neutrino (-197) 7 years ago

Stop loving Obama and start loving OWS.

I have pushed this site's potential more than anybody here. I have created a legend.

[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago

That sounds more like any number of "capture the flag games".

Another idiotic threat designed to stir up, god knows what?

There's never been anything stopping you from building that bridge no matter who else is here.

It's always been a non issue.

So why do you keep trying to make it one?

Why try and build a "private" bridge?

[-] -2 points by neutrino (-197) 7 years ago

It's not a non-issue. Odin is the only member of this forum who attends OWS activities. The members of Partisan Powers whom you belong to and whom are led by DKAtoday constantly ask that he be banned for bringing reality to this forum. The Crew For OWS Factuality AKA Bridge To The Ground will not rest until justice is done. The Odins of the world must be accepted here.

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 7 years ago

Pretty good avoidance.

Allow me to put it more simply for you.

What is it that is preventing you from using the forum as you desire?

[-] 1 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

Thanks. "A million monikers"....yes, but still only the truth as I see it. Let's try to put the animosity behind us though, and go on to see if this forum can reach its potential. I would prefer to put Thor's Hammer away, and give it that chance.

[-] -2 points by neutrino (-197) 7 years ago

I am a cyborg. My weapons are not tools I pick up and put down at my whim, they are integrated to the very core of my body, my being. "Oh captain my captain" I say to you for you are the captain, but I am and will remain your army.

[-] 3 points by GirlFriday (17435) 7 years ago

But no one heard them callin', no one came at all 'Cause they were too busy watchin' those old raindrops fall As a storm was blowin' out on the peaceful sea Seventy-three men sailed off to history

Um.......I couldn't help it.

[-] 0 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

As your captain... lol, I am asking you to 'sheathe' your weapon for a while, go out into the sunshine as I am going to do, enjoy the day, and see how it goes. If we have another one of our justified 'nightly insurrections' tonight, you have my OK to unsheathe.

[-] 0 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

I agree with all of that. You're a New Yorker. Get busy on that. I wrote a letter to the editor years ago while living in VT about the PIC, after reading a book called The Real War on Crime. Gee did that open my eyes as to what was going on. The idea of having children separated by long distances is cruel, so moving youthful detention centers closer to their families is good.

The Green Markets program which I believe began in the 70s is a wonderful program that is set up in many of the parks throughout the city, as I am sure you know. It often gives the chance for city dwellers to talk to the person who has grown the produce that they are buying. Even without the GM program though, New Yorkers often have more opportunity, and access to a lot more fresh vegey markets than people who live in the 'burbs' like me. Their food shopping is much more akin to Europeans especially the French....who if they are not talking about it, or buying it..they are eating it ;-)..., and for the most part I believe they rely a whole lot less on processed foods.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

Your probably right about the farmers market locations.

The other thing I would add is that I recently saw 1 or 2 being set up in poor neighborhoods of nyc. This is critical because in nyc we have what are called "fresh food deserts" in poor neighborhoods but lots of cheap fast food in these neighborhoods.

And we have started small scale urban green roof farms as well like "eagle street rooftop farms." http://rooftopfarms.org/. I will be starting my own tiny effort as well.


[-] 1 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

While never living in NYC, I am probably more familiar with the food shopping scene there than many New Yorkers are because many of them rarely leave their neighborhoods. While working on the 'boats' we often had to do our own shopping, and I knew that if we were ever at 138th St on the east side....well that was a "...food desert"..."fresh" or otherwise. The problems with not having fresh foods available, and eating a lot of processed foods are evident in the increasing rates of childhood obesity, and diabetes.

To a big degree though, we also have to educate people on the benefits of good eating habits. One of the problems there though is corporate America who pushes all this crap on us constantly.

While Greenpoint Brooklyn is not a poor neighborhood, I know there is a wonderful Green Market there at McCarren park. The area that is mostly Polish has a peculiar mix of ethnic meat markets, with organic food stores sprinkled in amongst them. It's funny to me. On week-ends, you can often see mostly older people, some of whom I think may have moved to the 'burbs return to get their Polish delicacies. That area around Bedford Ave is also attracting many artsy, Village-like people who cannot afford to live in Manhattan.

All efforts at growing your own food should be applauded, and I know that there is a big drive to do so within cities especially cities like Detroit that have suffered so much from the corrupt status quo. At the Union Square Green Market, one guy was selling NYC honey. A couple of days ago I finished off the jam that one of my daughters had canned, on a croissant. She had also picked the berries. I have seen her work all day, and then come home to her huge garden, and work on that past dark

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago


Just last year the city approved having beehives/honey harvesting so that has proliferated. in fact the roofgarden I listed is in greenpoint and has beehives.

It's a slow process. We gotta stick with it.

[-] 2 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

Agreed, cool! I'm not accustomed to agreeing with you, but I definitely have been this afternoon for good reason. I will look at that link now. Odin

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

I am no ones enemy here. If everyone can except that we must able to disagree without calling for a banning or harassment to silence we will all get along, and be enriched as a result.

[-] 1 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

Then VQ, having been bitter adversaries, it is our responsibility to set the example

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

I will try as always to be civil, and respectful. May my failures be rare and my successes be shared.


[-] 0 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

I hope that you are being sincere. I will respond in kind


[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

And the glacier cracks! Must be global warming!


[-] 1 points by Forrester (13) 7 years ago

My last comment until tonight. You're not suggesting that global warming has its benefits, are you? Who sounds like the repub now? lol

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 7 years ago

Just jokin'.

See ya round