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Forum Post: The Victory of Victories

Posted 12 years ago on Nov. 15, 2011, 3:58 p.m. EST by CafPop (45) from Rochester, NY
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Hello friends and fellow protesters. Video here: http://www.cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=7388130n&tag=contentBody;storyMediaBox

As much as I respect Cornel West, I now have grounds to disagree with this statement: "It’s impossible to translate the issue of the greed of Wall Street into one demand, or two demands..." I have happened upon an issue that I believe will undoubtedly become the keystone of our movement, and if we succeed in this, it will be the victory that will pave the way for all other victories.

It has long been known to me that Congress is a dysfunctional body. Every time a Congress person votes on a bill they are making decisions that directly impact their own investments. It seems they only play to their bases just enough to keep the votes on their side so they stay in office long enough to amass large personal fortunes, but their real aim is to gain an advantage that would otherwise be considered illegal insider trading to anyone else. As the former congressmen Brian Baird said "You'd feel like an idiot not to take advantage of it." This is the pressure that a person is under the moment they go from ordinary citizen to elected legislator. This is the pressure that we must work to eliminate from matters of public policy.

We must deliver Congress members from the unfortunate temptation of passing votes based on their stock portfolios and self interests. This impacts their every decision, and no member is exempt from the pressure. It seems obvious that this threatens democracy far more then even the most egregious campaign finance violations. As long as this phenomenon is legal, there is not even a veneer of civil functionality to their actions. Every decision they make is a tangled web of conflicted interests. We must not stand for this any longer.

Ideally, I'd like to see that they are unable to earn an income other than their public salaries that our taxes pay them, to ensure that they realize who they are earning their living for, but I'd settle for limiting them to having only a blind trust fund where they are legally obligated to not manipulate their portfolios. This issue is the perfect one to thrust the full force of the Occupy movement behind because it is the most cynical example of the marriage between Wall Street policy and Public Policy. Support the Stock Act! And if the Stock Act fails, or is drafted in such a way that allows for loopholes and abuse, then we must keep drafting our own bills and we won't stop until we successfully return the priorities of the Congress to where they should've been all along: with the American People!

I propose that we undertake a tireless campaign of truth and investigation in order to gain the evidence needed to prove this is going on, and make all our findings public. Hold every member of Congress accountable! Let no one talk us down or deter us until our goal has been met. Make it known that we have discovered the source of their affair. We knew the goal of wealth was what they were in love with more than the goal of the public good, but now we know of the most cynical mechanism that they use to realize this goal while they pay lip service to those who keep them in power. They've been playing us for too long, and for too long we didn't have the foundation we needed to call them on it. Those days are long gone now. Every action they take is suspect and their veil of secrecy is now punctured.

Eliminating this temptation from the decision making process of members of Congress would restore honesty to public debates, from there all real progress can be made, but until then no victory would be a true victory. It just takes 1 bill, and we must not be deterred EVER. I understand that in order to reform the Congress' way of doing business requires the consent and cooperation of those currently benefiting from the way things are. This is why we must effectively utilize the currency more valuable than money: information. We must be tireless, we must make examples of all those who do it, and publicly shame the worst offenders utilizing all forms of media. We must ensure that the truth is on our side, and let nothing but the truth of the situation speak for us. We must stop at nothing to let it be known that as soon as the American people elect their representatives those representatives gain an advantage that on one else in the marketplace has, and thus their priorities are invariably changed. No party is innocent, no member above reproach.

That's all for now. I just wanted to let it be known that I am not worried in the slightest about this coming winter. We must be like the Patriots we are and roll over our opponents in the snow. Let no element slow down our desire to do our civil duty. Occupy, we've gained the world's attention, now it's time to let them know that we mean business!



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[-] 1 points by CafPop (45) from Rochester, NY 12 years ago

I think it'd be folly to announce an official hiatus point

[-] 1 points by liberybell (49) 12 years ago

Brothers, how do you think we can restrict/limit this clear 'conflict of interest' of our congressmen? National referendum? Isn't congress the one that has to approve their own benefits, pay and campaign contribution regulations? How can we get a bill pass that will restrict the relationship of congressmen with corporations and market traders? Yes, I do know that there are some congressmen with integrity that will see the befit for our Nation, but unfortunately the individuals that have come to take control of our congress for the last 5 decades are not by far individuals of integrity. People of integrity have been push aside by pressure from the corporate puppetry complaisant of dishonesty and treason for the sake of their own profits and well-being. A revolution; a non-violent revolution, may be required... When in the history of selfish, egotistic and greedy empires/governments have the ones in power been willing to relinquish their thrown by a sudden impulse of fairness, honesty and integrity...?

[-] 1 points by CafPop (45) from Rochester, NY 12 years ago

My idea was to dedicate a portion of the Occupy members to a taskforce of truth gathering and publishing. We essentially scour over the financial information of elected officials, the stocks they trade (which is public knowledge) and the public policies they simultaneously support. We compare everyone's voting record to their investment record, we compare their net worth before and after their terms, and we make viral videos publishing the results. Investigative journalism in addition to gaining popular awareness. We must let them hear our voice in a unified manner.

Just like the Tea Party demanded that we all pay attention to the fact that our deficit problem needs to be dealt with (though their solutions were horribly illogical and I agree with nothing they stand for). So must we demand this of our national conversation. This is about returning honesty to our public officials that have been so lacking it. They shouldn't even have the slightest possibility of greed affecting their decisions. We must rally with one voice to outlaw their current investment practices.

In my opinion, all other issues pale in importance to this, because every vote they cast is suspect. If the public wants us to name an easily identifiable demand, this is surely it. How could it be otherwise?

[-] 1 points by OneVoice (153) 12 years ago

It's simple. Vote out every incumbent. Washington DC's elite upper class would be up in arms.

[-] 0 points by liberybell (49) 12 years ago

If a game is based on unfair rules it does not matter how many times you change the players...the game remains unfair.

[-] 0 points by OneVoice (153) 12 years ago

It's true that the "game" is based on unfair practices. The rules and structure of our government are soundly based on the principle of fairness. It's also based on majority rule. Corporations and monied elite are the minority at the voting booth. Even as powerful as the Mayor of NYC is he still isn't physically strong enough to uproot one tent stake at OWS. The strength to uproot his continued Occupation of Government and the influence that corporate America has in manipulating government policy so that the "minority" of wealthy monied elite can control the masses is to uproot every incumbent.

[-] 0 points by CafPop (45) from Rochester, NY 12 years ago

As much as I love your attitude, and agree with the idea of voting out most, if not, all incumbents, the problem currently lies in the rules that all congressmen are subject to. So everyone we elect to represent us is going to have the same mixed agenda just by the virtue of this practice currently being allowed.

My uncle is a Federal Court judge, and he can't invest in anything other than a blind trust, but Congress members aren't subject to the same rules. We need to eliminate this temptation altogether. These our supposed to be our representatives, but when we elect them all we are doing is appointing the most privileged private stock traders in the country just by virtue of their position.

This is an easy fix that has a precedent in government. It's a simple demand, but it clears the way for every other victory. It simultaneously accomplishes almost every goal of the Occupy movement.

[-] 1 points by OneVoice (153) 12 years ago

As long as corporate money is primarily used to keep both the Republican Party and the Democratic Party in line and this flow of money is used to shore up incumbency then the weakness in their plan will always be the voting booth. Majority rules and they don't have the numbers unless they can influence public opinion through media campaigns and privately funded corporate think tanks. Once politicians lose that comfortable feeling that incumbency gives them they will naturally, by instinct , represent all people. Self preservation is a strong driving force.

[-] 0 points by CafPop (45) from Rochester, NY 12 years ago

Exactly. Why not a march on Washington once we've gathered enough information? Just lay it all out there for everyone. I want to come down to NYC and meet with you guys all in person. I'm very excited about the revelation of this issue. I'm not even mad. It's just too ridiculous to even be mad about. I'm just glad that it's out there in the public, and that something can now finally be done about it. I'm sure I'm not the only one who's fired up about that 60 minutes report

[-] 0 points by CafPop (45) from Rochester, NY 12 years ago

instead of proclaiming defeat, we must rally behind this issue and let our voice be heard!

[-] 0 points by CafPop (45) from Rochester, NY 12 years ago

Occupy your minds and occupy the truth. Name one political issue more important than this. Name one thing that can accomplish more with less than this. If you can honestly name, and then defend something more pertinent to the goals of Occupy, I'd sure like to know, but until then, this must be the thing we all demand gets talked about!

[-] 0 points by CafPop (45) from Rochester, NY 12 years ago

In response to the accusation Pelosi was quoted saying: "I will hold my record in terms of fighting the credit card companies as speaker of the House or as a member of Congress up against anyone."

I say let's save her the trouble and hold her record up against EVERYONE in Congress. She might be no better than the rest of them, but that's just proof that something needs to be done about this, and that it needs external pressure to get done. The people's collective efforts and the truth are two things more valuable than money. Let's "make it rain"...as they say...lol

[-] 0 points by CafPop (45) from Rochester, NY 12 years ago

Did anyone else see this 60 minutes on sunday? I guess the mainstream media isn't so bad after all...