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Highlights of the #D12 West Coast Port Shutdown

Posted 3 years ago on Dec. 12, 2011, 12:36 p.m. EST by OccupyWallSt

oakland shuts down the port

Note: The following highlights are not comprehensive. For a full list of participating Occupations and more solidarity actions across the world, see West Coast Port Shutdown.

Oakland

  • 6:46pm PST: From @OccupyOakland: At least 8000 people at the Port of Oakland right now, Please come down and party with us! We will be having a GA soon at Hanjin Terminal (zone 4) to discuss extending the blockade in light of police violence and the 3AM shift.
  • 6:22pm PST: Over 5,000 people attended a General Assembly and gathered to shut down the port. According to Occupy Oakland, the work shift has been moved to 3AM.
  • 2:20pm PST: From @OccupyOakland: "Please come to the rally at OGP today at 3PM and march to the port at 4 and 5. We do not need people at the port till then. Bring lots of warm clothes for tonights march and sleeping bags for the shut down the port action tonight!"
  • 12:00pm PST: Occupiers have found huge numbers of police in riot gear and formation hiding behind vans near the ports. Some have beanbag shotguns. Requesting all supporters come down now!
  • 10:00AM PST: It has been confirmed that the ILWU union arbiter has told the first shift at the Port of Oakland not to work. The port of Oakland is CLOSED. Protesters danced and celebrated in front of lines of riot police at the entrance of the port. Occupy Oakland plans to rally at 3PM PST and return at 4PM PST for the second shift.

oakland

Houston

  • 3:30pm CST: At least 8 people have been arrested, as HPD continued to use tents to cover protesters to hide their actions. Multiple sources have said that violence occurred. Police also used horses and shield barricades to forcibly disperse crowds. There are also reports that at least one officer drew a gun at a parked car.
  • 2:10pm CST: Surrounded by crowds of chanting supporters, peaceful protesters continue to lie in the street. Officers were seen on livestream covering their badge numbers with duct tape. When they moved in to start arresting the nonviolent protesters, police placed a tent over one so that no one could witness the arrest. Supporters chant: "What do you have to hide?"
  • 2:00pm CST: Several protesters are using nonviolent civil disobedience to close lanes. The Port of Houston on the Gulf Coast -- the second largest port in the country -- is successfully Occupied. Police on horses reported on the scene. Protesters are chanting "Who do you protect? Who do you serve?"

Bellingham, WA

  • 12:16pm PST: Protesters have put U-locks around their necks and are blocking the railway. Musicians are singing "Hold them back, no coal trains on this track!" while supporters make speeches and cheer in response. Earlier this morning, the protesters informed the train company who owns the track of their plans to shut down the trains. (The port in Bellingham is not active, but Goldman Sachs uses rail traffic through the city.)

Los Angeles / Port of Long Beach

  • 3:43pm PST: Reports of at least a thousand protesters at the Port of Long Beach this morning. Occupiers are planning a General Assembly for later tonight.
  • 10:43am PST: Most of the Occupiers have been dispersed from the pier entrance by the police's threat of employing brutal force. They are currently marching on highways.
  • 9:50am PST: Protesters began the day by picketing in front of SSA Marine, a shipping company owned by Goldman Sachs. Hundreds then marched into the streets and took over the intersection this morning and are still there. They have set up a tent, flags, and banners to prevent access to the Goldman Sachs dock. Blocks-long lines of police cars are further blocking traffic. The entrance to the Goldman Sachs pier has been closed for the past few hours, and shipments are backed along the highway. The blockade has been corralled by riot police, who are gathering in large groups and have threatened to use (and may have already used) chemical weapons, dog bites, rubber bullets, beanbag guns, and tear gas. After an attack from police, at least two nonviolent protesters has been violently arrested.

Port of LA

Seattle / Longview

  • 6:15pm PST: Seattle's blockade this evening is currently being tear gassed, and flash grenades are being deployed. Occupy Seattle has joined Occupy San Diego's request for an extension of the blockade in response the police repression they have endured.
  • 3:00pm PST: March arriving at the port.
  • 2:00pm PST: March is starting from Westlake, headed to port.
  • 10:00am PST: From Occupy Seattle: Occupy Longview has effectively SHUT DOWN the terminals and they're moving on to the EGT offices! ILWU workers go home with pay. In solidarity with the West Coast Port Shutdown and Occupy Longview, come on down to Westlake for a rally at 1pm! We'll head to the Port from there!

San Diego

  • 2:00pm PST: Occupy San Diego has announced they will shut down the port again tomorrow, holding true to the original warning that they would continue the blockade if the police used violence.
  • 11:30am PST: This morning, Occupiers gathered at Chicano Park and then headed to Caesar Chavez Park in a march led by veterans to set up a picket line. The street and entrance to the port were closed for several hours. Around three hours ago, police in riot gear moved in. Protesters were snatched, tackled, andtossed on the ground by San Diego police and Harbor Police. Several arrests were made. Cameras from media were also taken and smashed on the ground. Occupiers were eventually forced from the intersection and the port is now open. However, demonstrations remain nearby.

Portland

  • 6:20pm PST: Mounted police, tear gas, pepper spray, and flash grenades used to clear protesters from Terminal 18. Picket line is still holding down Terminal 5.
  • 12:07pm PST: Protesters allowed one truck bearing food for foreign shipworkers to be let in at Terminal 6. Decision made to not let any more semis in or out.
  • 9:58am PST: Mainstream media reported earlier this morning that the port has shut down. Groups of several hundred protesters each are blocking various terminal entrances to the port. Several terminals are confirmed to be closed. Reports of riot police mobilizing.

Portland blockade

Vancouver, BC

  • 3:10pm PST: Earlier this morning, an autonomous affinity group blocked the entrance to the largest port in Canada, calling for international solidarity with the West Coast Port Shutdown and workers in labor disputes in the US. Occupy Vancouver has now gathered at the port. Vancouver police closed the Port of the Vancouver in response to the demonstration.

Denver

  • 1:00pm MST: In solidarity with the port blockades, landlocked Occupy Denver shut down a Wal-Mart distribution center in Loveland, CO. Occupiers sat in the road and erected tents and prevented shipments from entering or leaving the facility, one of the largest distribution centers in the country. Police used SWAT teams to pull apart the protesters, who were locking arms in nonviolent resistance. 13 arrests were made, with at least one person thrown violently to the ground and sat on by police.

Tacoma

  • 12:00pm PST: Occupy Tacoma held an informational picket at the Port. Note: The Tacoma General Assembly decided not to close the port because the targeted shipping companies for the west coast port shutdowns are not present in our port. According to a letter from the Tacoma General Assembly to the ILWU: "As a movement we stand in solidarity with both the ILWU’s fight against the anti-union EGT in Longview as well as the efforts of independent truck drivers organizing against the Goldman Sachs-backed SSA terminal in Los Angeles. At this demonstration we will be distributing information to workers and truckers about these heroic struggles in addition to showing support for workers rights to organize as a direct challenge to corporate rule of our political and economic system."

Anchorage

  • 10:00am AKST: A rally is planned at Town Square at 1:00PM AKST followed by a march to the port.

New York City

  • 10:30am EST At 7:30, groups met outside Liberty Square and City Hall. Donning vampire squid costumes, they marched to headquarters of Goldman Sachs and held picket lines and a mock press conference. Protesters then dispersed and flash mobbed the World Financial Center with dancing and chanting, forcing police to shut down a section of the Center. Around 20 people were arrested.

287 Comments

287 Comments


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[-] 15 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly. So that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.” ~ Theodore Roosevelt

Ignore the critics!

[-] 3 points by alouis (1511) from New York, NY 3 years ago

This is a terrific statement. It sums it all up. Viva Oakland!

[-] 1 points by GeorgeVreelandHill (7) 3 years ago

Funny that a supporter of the Occupy movement would use words from a U.S. President. This is proof that Occupy has no clue and will use anything to fool their supporters. Bye, Occupy.

George Vreeland Hill

[-] 1 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

Occupy is all inclusive. My voice (my viewpoint) and your voice (your viewpoint) are both welcome. That is a good thing. I have been coming to this forum for over a month and often use quotes. I have quoted people, from Gandhi to Leonardo da Vinci -- it is my modus operandi. If a quote resonates with me and fits the topic, I will use it.

With Occupy being all inclusive, there is a wide range of commentary and vastly differing opinions. Everybody is drawn here because of issues they care about and Occupy, again, doesn't bar anybody, not me or you or any one else. They accept that everyone has different views of the world. That is not to say Occupy does not have major themes that we all share concerning the state of things. The three things that are most important to me are 1) ending government/business corruption 2) fixing income inequality 3) basic human rights issues

What brings you here?

[-] 1 points by FHampton (309) 3 years ago

Let's stop with the nostalgia for Teddy Roosevelt, an imperialist bigot and opportunist--he was living in a time when it would have been political suicide not to court a massive and powerful labor movement. We need to look back to true labor leaders and radicals, not racist Presidents like Roosevelt.

[-] 0 points by alouis (1511) from New York, NY 3 years ago

FHampton You make a very good point. Roosevelt was everything you say he was. Problem is quotations by him are easy to come by and he said something that was valid (like "it's a good idea to brush your teeth") that was profound, yet surely he's not the only one who said pretty much the same thing.

[-] 0 points by thefutureisnow (223) from Newark, NJ 3 years ago

well said you are a fountain of perspective and clarification , thank you for your take on this subject , it quite important that we remember all of the hardcore protesters who are out there being arrested and assaulted,

[-] 0 points by Thrasymaque (-2138) 3 years ago

Critics are always important. You should never ignore their arguments. Instead, you should analyze them to see if they have any worth. If they do, you might change your plan, if they don't you propose stronger counter-arguments to defeat them. René Descartes understood this very well, and that's why he published the critics in his book.

[-] 2 points by Just1MoreVoice (76) 3 years ago

True enough. It really does no good for the OWS movement if our demonstrations are having stronger negative consequences than positive ones for the other members of the 99%. There has to be another action with equal impact that will not cause regular folks to lose wages over it.

[-] 1 points by harbek2000 (30) 3 years ago

They are thankful to have a job while at the same time disgusted they can't get raises, or time off from work, or.....

Not everyone collects. The few are collecting way too much for any human needs... If they hadn't messed with our economy the way they did, none of this would be taking placed.

Remember, None of us started this fight.... They did.

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

Fighting the corporations by stopping the working man from collecting an income is not the fight. I would be so much happier if they just protested the ports as opposed to shutting them down. You may have had a much better turn out also. It would raise awareness of the issues. Now though, I am just frustrated with OWS. I feel they took the wrong path which is a selfish one. I am a Veteran and am all about freedom and rights. However, when you decide for others what is good for them, while assuming it's the better good, no one wins. Your freedom of choice and opinion, should NEVER supersede mine. The port shutdown hurt the little guys, not the big ones and turned Americans away from supporting OWS.

OWS is not infallible. Americans have the right to critique, they should never have the right to hurt or control other peoples lives for any reason, no matter the cause. If hurting others, within the ranks, in any way is OK, then you are no better than the "enemy" you are trying to fight.

[-] 1 points by harbek2000 (30) 3 years ago

when your media refuses to acknowledge the problems in this country... things must be done to correct the situation... you may not here a thing about any of this otherwise.

Without waking everyone up to the problems at hand, and how the rest are forced out of the workforce - without any of it being reported, the rest will never know what is truly happening.

If none had to worry about money... none would become upset now would they?

There is more to this than attempting or not attempting to hurt others. If you can't see the total control over every citizens lives in this country then this is needed to bring attention to the wrong doing.

People won't walk out on their life sustaining jobs, even when they truly know those jobs are no longer sustaining and are just barely allowing them to get by.

Rather than step up to do anything to correct the situation, they yell at those who are trying to make a difference for all of society.

Not happy with it? Ignore it and in time even you will be unable to.

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

Maybe you missed my point a bit. I see no reason to shut the port down. Your point is to wake everyone one up to the issue. I would be happy with that. I also stated if they were to just protest there and not intentionally try to interfere with the operation, Many more people would have been on board. I know OWS lost supporters over this. That is not what they need to be doing. The point was to bring awareness not cause disruption in the lives of the ones they are supposedly speaking out for.

How far is too far? Does anyone know or even care? Will hardcore occupy supporters go along with anything, as long as it is an occupy movement?

I am awake btw.

[-] 0 points by alouis (1511) from New York, NY 3 years ago

Strikes are never 100% voluntary actions. They rarely are pleasant and do have unintended consequences. Both sides have implicit or explicit coercion. Same thing was true even in our own revolutionary war. Stalin wasn't a nice guy but when he said you have to crack eggs to make omelets he was saying something too true and obvious.

[-] 0 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

After the fact critics become important. If I listened to critics before speaking, I would never speak again.

[-] 1 points by Thrasymaque (-2138) 3 years ago

Critics always come after the fact. It's impossible to criticize something that hasn't yet come into existence. I'm not sure what your point is.

[-] 1 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

You apparently didn't get the point of the quote by Roosevelt either. sigh. It means there is a time to outright ignore critics or else you risk doing nothing for fear of being criticized.

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

Ignoring critics and drowning while the critics tell you your ship is sinking is just ignorant.....lol.

[-] 1 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

You should wear a condom on your head because if you're gonna act like a dick you you might as well dress like one!

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

I am merely pointing out, if you take that to the extreme you could be just as bad off.

Forgive me, I thought for a second I could have an opinion without being attacked. You are right, I should just keep my opinions to myself.

The OWS people are so righteous and dignified in all matters I see. You want your way or else and to hell with whomever doesn't agree with how you get there.

[-] 1 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

Calling someone ignorant is a petty, childlike attack, I responded in kind. If you had stated in such a reasonable, respectable tone .....I am merely pointing out, if you take that to the extreme you could be just as bad off.....the first time, instead of stating your observation in such a dick-head manner as.....Ignoring critics and drowning while the critics tell you your ship is sinking is just ignorant.....lol......you might have earned a decent reply from me. So here's a rule to live by, if you don't want to be bombarded by petty replies don't start off your comments with petty insults. And don't turnaround and be a hypocrite when someone blasts back and try to make them out as being...undignified....after all, it was clearly you who set the tone for our dialogue.

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

That was not a personal attack on you. I did not say YOU were ignorant. The theory is what I was questioning. You took it wrong. You expect it to be a personal attack. The conversation was not about you, it was about the quote. How you decided I was calling you ignorant is beyond me.

You instantly went to the name calling and acting like a child, not I.

[-] 0 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

Don't be coy. You know exactly how you meant your statement to be taken. The tone is unmistakably condescending and you know it. So, don't be a puss and try to act all like 'it wasn't my fault, man, the guy misunderstood me' to save face. I did not misinterpret anything.

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

I know exactly how I meant it, yes. Exactly how I explained it. You can take it however you want.

I don't need to save face or try to look good to you or anyone else. I don't care about your opinion of me. If I was being an ass to you on purpose, I would say so. Again, you want things to be personal. That's fine, I really don't care.

[-] 1 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

Sorry. I believe you now, fasternova. You come across very sincere and genuine in that statement. I'm sorry for my overreaction and feel like a two year old, I obviously did read more into your statement than was there. bygones be bygones?

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

Sure, but I really don't know if you are sincere here, honestly.

Besides, we're the only ones even reading this thing anyway, LOL.

[-] 2 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

Yes, I was being sincere. I don't usually admit acting like a two year old unless I mean it. I really am sorry for being a jerk but lets blame my parents so I feel better okay. I hope nobody reads this. Lol.

[-] 0 points by Thrasymaque (-2138) 3 years ago

I understand the quote, but I don't agree with it. There is valor in both the doers and the ones who criticize and philosophize. Occupy would not exist without critics. David Graeber is a scholar and a critic. His writings on anarchy which come from criticizing other systems were monumental for Occupy. The protesters are the do-ers and also very important. They all play an important role.

[-] 1 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

I do not think the quote meant critics have no role or valor, rather I think he meant to bolster the mind of the do-ers, meaning sometimes do-ers must put the critics out of their mind and just get on with doing. The quote acknowledges there is no effort without error and shortcomings, and those errors and shortcomings will certainly be criticized.

[-] 0 points by Thrasymaque (-2138) 3 years ago

I think the quote is pretty much useless in the regard that you present it. Do-ers that know what they are doing and who believe in their ideas are the ones that count, and they don't give a crap about critics. The ones who might flinch and back away because they are scared of what people might say are the types of do-ers we don't need anyway. They back away because they don't have confidence in their ideas. We shouldn't invite those types to the party. It's best if they stay home. I want do-ers with a heart, conviction, and courage.

[-] 1 points by JadedCitizen (4277) 3 years ago

First you defend the critics, now you say you shouldn't give a crap about them. Make up my mind, will ya.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 3 years ago

I think what he is saying is that you should be open to criticism and refinement, but you must always be a doer. Both of those ideas are compatible. Blind belief in one's righteousness is what should always be criticized by the doer and others.

[-] 0 points by Thrasymaque (-2138) 3 years ago

There's no contradiction. Theory and practice are both important, but there is a time when they should feed off each other, and a time when they should be separated. The thoughts and ideas of a painter are formed by the critics and his past influences. Once he has digested these and has formed and idea in which he believes he must forget the critics and his influences while he paints with utmost conviction. At that point in time, he gives no crap about critics. Only the painters who are weak care about critics when they create a work. The good ones don't care. Once the work is finished, the critics flood in once more and the painter can then reflect on what they have to say. This will help him for his next work.

The quote you posted his useless because the only doers we should care about are those with strong ideas that they already believe in. Those types never stay home because of what others might think or say.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 3 years ago

But that type of behavior leads to hubris. A doer who does in spite of a consensus is a Bush in the making. I guess that is why I have yet to do and am always questioning. But i often find myself drowning in my own thoughts so maybe you are right. I guess i'm too wishy-washy.

[-] 2 points by Thrasymaque (-2138) 3 years ago

The problem with Bush is that he didn't listen the to critics and philosophers between the acts. He didn't seek to ameliorate himself at every step of the way. It's perfectly OK to drown in our thoughts and question ourselves. It's important. But it has to be done wisely so that our thoughts move towards the truth; a truth we can have conviction in. A big problem that affects many people is that they drown in their thoughts but don't have a direction. You must either have a guide to help you, or you must be very intelligent to be able to focus and strive towards a goal as you question yourself. Most people don't really know how to think. They turn in circles instead of climbing higher and higher grounds. Once you reach a new plateau, then you must act without fear. You'll have time to listen to the critics when the act is over and you are ready to climb to another plateau.

[-] 1 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 3 years ago

Well spoken.

[-] 6 points by owsowns (12) from Las Vegas, NV 3 years ago

Why shut down the ports (you ask)? ...to show the rest of the world the solidarity of the movement. Many people here have been trying to quantify the immediate effects of shutting down the ports, however it is more important to point out that this collective has the ability in numbers to pull off such a feat. The news organizations will most likely gloss over it, at best, however there is no denying that this is possible. This is about instilling fear into those in power who gamble our money away. It's about resistance to oppression. There is fear in the eyes of the 1%, and the only tactic they can resort to is vain attempts to discredit those in the movement. Call us 'anarchists', 'hippies', or whatever you want, but regardless of those who are of the 99% that oppose OWS, realize that those of us who are courageous enough to step forward and take action are fighting your battle.

[-] 2 points by GypsyKing (8719) 3 years ago

Very well put. One word of caution though. However impressive the recent actions have been in their sweeping geographical scope, we must also find ways to coordinate and concentrate our efforts when called for. I think here the movement still needs a lot of improvement:)

[-] 1 points by owsowns (12) from Las Vegas, NV 3 years ago

I agree, GypsyKing, and I have high hopes that OWS will be able to zero in on certain areas in order to increase potency. There's still a lot of sentiment that OWS is a detached batch of protesters, instead of being representative of everybody who is the 99%. There's still a bit of 'us/them' mentality, and a good message to get out there is that everybody is affected-regardless of political/religious leanings. If you're not part of the wealthiest, you're one of us, period, unless you have some sort of special deal w/the government. I haven't met anybody who has it.

[-] 1 points by GypsyKing (8719) 3 years ago

It's a problem we face as humanity. Even the 1%; they just don't know it.

[-] 1 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

I think the effort of these youths ought to be put to task to form a new company--any company--that employs people. We know they're good at disrupting--let's see how good they are at building. They can make their company as employee-friendly and environmentally sustainable as they desire, and then we'll see how that company fares in the open market. Anyone want to place wagers on the outcome?

[-] 2 points by aeturnus (231) from Robbinsville, NC 3 years ago

Be careful what you wish for. In Argentina, they did just as you are suggesting. It led to a reshaping of a good portion of their economy in ways that could have only frightened Wall Street and its investor circus.

It's true that it hasn't reached that point here in the US, but any protest aimed at disrupting the economic and not just the political system has inner merits that are just waiting to explode. There are areas of our own economy which are likely beginning to worry Wall Street, if compared to some movements in other nations. You just won't hear about them, for two main reasons. One is that they are just small movements as of yet, experimental to say the least, but have a tendency for something bigger in the future. Two is that the media is keeping a lot of it out of the public eye, hoping that the majority won't really latch on to such things. You don't hear the media talk about things like how to create credit unions or set up community currencies, for example.

As far as how any "company" fares in the open market is absurd, since even proposing such a thing engenders competition and not cooperation - a type of society in which many of us are fighting against. The market ought to be considered an aberration, something that needs to be resisted. And you can resist the market through the use of ideas like gift economies, sliding scale fees, community currencies, non-hierarchical collective ownership, for starters.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

Not a bad idea for a small group. How do you intend to get 3M people to buy into your great mini idea.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

You can also resist the market by moving to, say, North Korea. That might not be a bad idea--I've heard it's a great place for like-minded idealists to live. I know, you've heard that one before. But the point is fair. So many want occupyers want the benefits that the free market economy in the US deliver, but don't feel the desire to participate in the process of making it work. I'm sure that some of the occupyers could (and will someday) make productive members of this society. But they ought to try to understand it first, and then make judgments. These kids don't have a clue right now, and they're being fed a bunch of lies by the left-wing media.

[-] 1 points by owsowns (12) from Las Vegas, NV 3 years ago

It's funny, before the OWS movement, I always wondered whether or not a collective could form some sort of rogue corporation designed strictly to subvert the ones in existence. As for your thought on how well a 'fair' company would do, it depends on what is really considered profitable. So far, corporations have chased down each and every cent, possibly to compete for shareholders, however, they have been insanely profitable. On the other hand, is a CEO really worth tens of millions? The people at the top are in it for one thing, which is to make as much as they possibly can. Maybe a fair company can control those at the top, still pay them nicely, but balance it a bit more throughout the organization. That company may still fare well in the economy. Either way-you bring up an interesting point.

[-] 1 points by TLydon007 (1278) 3 years ago

"Anyone want to place wagers on the outcome?"

Outcome on what?? Your pathetic strawman?? What is it we're betting?? So we're betting that they should start a business and completely ignore the fact that our political system is broke and needs fundamental changes?? I'll bet you they shouldn't. I already won, but how much do you want to bet??

[-] 1 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

Whoa, mister! I don't think it's the political system that most of the occupyers are bemoaning--I do believe it's the economic system. They're different Some don't understand that--though I'm sure you do. By the way, I don't disagree that there are some problems with the political system. What's your particular beef?

[-] 2 points by TLydon007 (1278) 3 years ago

My only problem is that it's easier to say working or starting a company is harder than what they're doing. While I work over 60 hours a week, take in a lot of money, I'm not under any delusion that what the occupiers are doing is easier than what I do. Some of them are outside 24 hours a day. When I went to my local occupation(philadelphia), I was shocked at what they were willing to endure for what they believe in. Their day was much harder than mine, and they were not being paid at all to be there. Sure, I may disagree with some of it (and was vocal about it at the GA) but I fully embrace all the key points. People have recognized that the political and economic system have become so intertwined, that legislation is going to the highest bidder. While I'm sure there are many politicians and many CEOs who would rather compete in a system where it isn't like that, they are likely helpless within this system to do anything about it unless they are forced to.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

OK. I'm not saying it's easy sitting in the rain and shabby tents for days on end. Some of these kids obviously believe in something--though I suspect many of them would be hard pressed to articulate anything other than cheap slogans. Most of them, I'd guess, would have nothing to say other than the recycled garbage that they've heard from others. But they're young, and they don't know how the world works. If they did, most of them would rightly attributing many of the things they've been blessed with to our capitalist system, rather than blasting it. It really aggravates me that probably 90% of these kids are carrying fancy cell phones and iphones and all these other high-tech gadgets, without acknowledging that none of these things would have come to exist if it weren't for the entrepreneurial spirit (and the ability to retain the products of our labor) fostered by the capitalist system (to the exclusion of any other economic system).

[-] 2 points by TLydon007 (1278) 3 years ago

Perhaps that's why they are not protesting the cell phone companies??

Also, on both far ends of the economic political spectrum, they would not have those things. Only in a country where your economic rights are secured, do companies pay you a wage that allows you to purchase those things. I can't think of a single country more unequal than we've become that has produced any technological breakthrough. Most of their entrepreneurial spirit is spent in either in an assembly line collecting sustenance wages, without the surplus to avail them free time to produce something more or they are searching for food. At the opposite end of Capitalism, it's just as bad. If we were leaning too far in that direction, I would applaud protesters fighting that. But we're not.

For 30 years, we've been promised that greater inequality will be followed by greater prosperity, and this promise only delivers in the extreme short-term, leading to further problems, for which the same promises are made.

If I need to choose between moving further in the direction of countries with higher inequality (Mexico, Chile, and Turkey are only slightly higher now) or moving in the direction of countries with lower inequality (Sweden, Denmark, Netherlands, Germany are all at the top of the list) then I feel the only sane choice is obvious.

Bear in mind, economic rights have never led to communism in all of history. Only countries with no economic rights and high inequality have ever become communist. And I'll accept neither of these extremes because they benefit nobody but the ruling few.

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

"Most of them, I'd guess, would have nothing to say other than the recycled garbage that they've heard from others. But they're young, and they don't know how the world works. If they did, most of them would rightly attributing many of the things they've been blessed with to our capitalist system, rather than blasting it. It really aggravates me that probably 90% of these kids are carrying fancy cell phones and iphones and all these other high-tech gadgets, without acknowledging that none of these things would have come to exist if it weren't for the entrepreneurial spirit (and the ability to retain the products of our labor) fostered by the capitalist system (to the exclusion of any other economic system)."

These are huge assumptions made by you. The protesters are people from all age groups, all walks of life, all political corners. Assuming and accusing them of being young, spoiled kids who know nothing about the "real world" is ridiculous and is nothing but recycled garbage from the MSM. Saying these things makes you a hypocrite.

[-] -2 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

I've seen the videos. I'd swear it's the same group of people in every city--they're virtually undistringuishable from one another. It looks like an army of slightly-out-of-the-mainstream grad students. There certainly isn't as much demographic variety as you'd see at, say, a Tea Party rally. Sister, seeing is believing when it comes to these kids.

[-] 1 points by inlikeflint (42) 3 years ago

Tea bagger Astroturf event. (Corporate lackeys).

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

You know, inlikeflint, your arguments are extremely well-considered and smartly articulated. You might consider nominating yourself for a leadership position in OWS.

[-] 0 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

And thinking that everyone who has a cell phone is rich and spoiled is ridiculous. Almost everyone in this country has a cell phone, yet most of us ARE NOT rich and spoiled. If you think being middle class is being rich and spoiled, then you are blinded. I guess you think everyone needs to be dirt poor before they have a right to fight for their rights.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

Ha! Don't you see the irony here? Our "poor" are wealthy enough to afford cell phones, cable TV and Playstation3 or whatever. These things are reserved for the rich in most countries, but then again, most of those countries haven't lived under capitalism to the degree that we've historically enjoyed it in the USA. Maybe you can see why this stuff drives me batty. These activists are hypocrites--they want all the benefits, but they protest all of the activity that makes these benefits possible. It's like something out of the twilight zone that some people just don't grasp this irony.

[-] 1 points by inlikeflint (42) 3 years ago

You live in a fantasy world. You don't grasp reality.

Better go back and listen to Glenn Beck where he can tell you what to think next.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

Heh heh. This, coming from a person whose most valuable contribution to the OWS movement is chanting slogans (or perhaps using the "people's microphone")? Stop it, you're killing me!

[-] 0 points by jjoplin (25) 3 years ago

Indeed. Thank you.

[-] 1 points by primitivetimes (73) 3 years ago

Hi jjoplin. For some reason there's no reply link below your post, so I'm replying here. Your post brings up so many good issues and unfortunately I just don't have the time respond fully to everything, but let me try my best.

Regarding Cuba, I admit I don't know as much about it as I'd like. It's actually something I've been intending to read more about for quite awhile, so I will take your suggestion. However, I'm not sure why you bring it up? Do you think I advocate for communism? Why would you assume that? This is something I don't understand. Why do free market evangelists always assume that the only alternative to capitalism is communism, and accuse those critical of the free market system as being communists? I recognize the importance of being aware of history, but you also have to be aware of the present. This is 2011, we are in a different place now. We have seen the shortcomings of communism, and now, though you may disagree, many are seeing the shortcomings of capitalism. How about something new? There was no such thing as communism or capitalism, until we tried it. It's about evolving and adapting to new realities and awareness, not being limited by the past.

And by the way, these ideas like socialism, communism, capitalism aren't static, all-or-nothing ideas as they're commonly treated in these types of debates. We have many socialist programs and laws in our country, just like China has many capitalist aspects to its system. The goal is to find the best system that works for the most people and not be overly concerned with labels. Both capitalism and communism are good ideas IN THEORY. The problem is that human beings have proven unequal to the task of implementing either system to it's maximum effectiveness because of the corrupting influence of power. This, however, can change as human beings evolve and learn from their mistakes, and realize that regular folks have the power to create whatever social system they want, rather than continuing to be dictated to by the small minority of people who actually care about power/influence etc.- which happens under both communism AND capitalism.

The reason I mentioned Steve Jobs was as an example of an innovator, not a creator, that was motivated by capitalism, which was an exception to my view that innovation is not motivated by money. The common view of free market proponents is that you need the profit incentive for innovation to occur, and I don't think that's true, because if you look at the major innovators in history, they were not rich or motivated by money. The innovation itself and the idea of pushing humanity forward was the reward. Even Steve Jobs himself, if you had asked him what gave him the most pleasure in his life, I'm fairly certain he would not have said "the money" or "my big house and car." He would have talked about the satisfaction of enhancing people's lives and changing the way the world communicates, which has nothing to do with money. In fact, I believe the profit incentive actually hinders, rather than helps, innovation, but that's a much larger discussion too broad for this post.

You asked me to look around my room. I saw a desk, dresser, bed, chairs, etc. You say my desk was created by someone who benefitted from being its inventor. That's true, but what about the workers? In my eyes, they are just as responsible for its creation and deserve just as much reward. But as it is, the CEO of the company who made my desk gets the lionshare of the profits, and the people who actually created and assembled it probably got very little. That's the issue here.

There's nothing necessarily wrong with making huge profits, it's just important that those profits are achieved ethically. It's wrong that we look at a billionaire, and we instantly think "success story." Doesn't it matter how that person achieved that wealth? If he achieved it by paying his employees inadequate wages, or overworking them, or outsourcing jobs, that person is not a success story in my eyes. Success should be measured in terms of contribution to society, not money. If money is the only measure, I guess Paris Hilton or Snooki contribute more to society than a doctor, or a scientist trying to find a cure for cancer, etc. Our priorities are misplaced.

I simply disagree with your statement that our problems today aren't caused by CEOs making too much money, or in other words, inequality, which results from the powerful people at the top influencing the parameters of society to make them more favorable to their interests and less favorable to everyone elses. I'm not being sold a story by politicians. I stopped paying attention to all of them a long time ago. I would suggest you are being sold a story by politicians, as well as the corporate-owned media, that socialism is evil, that greed is natural, and that humans aren't capable of creating a functional society without pursuing their own individual greed. This philosophy has enabled the small minority of humans who truly are greedy, to take the reins of society and devise a system that is favorable to them only. I believe most humans are NOT greedy, and just want to contribute to society and take care of their families, and if we had a system that was designed for those kinds of people, most people would be better off than they are today. But people have been deceived into believing we need to have the possibility of huge profits in order to function, despite the fact that very few people in the world actually realize huge profits.

I think the alternative to our current system isn't some far reaching "socialism" or "communism." It will come from a bottom up approach of people taking more responsibility for their lives and their surrounding community. The best example of this in action is the worker co-op movement, which proves that, again, you don't need the profit incentive to create and produce for society. Here are companies that are worker owned- so employees take more responsibility, and guess what? They get more of the profits. Why are we so consumed with protecting profits for the 1%, but not everyone else? Why do we say we value democracy in society, but have zero democracy in our workplaces? There's no limit to the expansion of this system. It can encompass all the vital sectors of our society- education, health care, technology, etc. It just takes people waking up and realizing that it's not the CEOs, politicians, or bankers pushing society forward, it's the engineers, doctors, scientists, and workers, and those people are not the ones making insane profits today. Here is a recent article about it if you're interested: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/15/opinion/worker-owners-of-america-unite.html

As for that poll, that's great, but it doesn't really mean a whole lot. Most Americans once thought the world was flat, or that segregation and slavery was justified. Most Americans believe the federal deficit is a big problem, but they don't want to raise taxes or cut social programs. On the other hand, I've seen many polls that show a wide majority of Americans believe the wealth inequality gap is too wide and the 1% holds inordinate sway over the direction of the country. My point is, polls tend to contradict each other, and appealing to the idea that "most people agree with you" as validation for your view is irrelevant to the actual issue at hand.

The reason I don't live in Sweden is because my family, friends and life are all here in the U.S. Simple as that.

[-] 1 points by jjoplin (25) 3 years ago

Thank you for your reply. I truly do appreciate an honest conversation and only through understanding each other's views can we get anywhere. So for your willingness to talk civilly is very cool.

I want to try and answer the question you asked about why we capitalists believe there is no alternative other than capitalism and//or socialism. I think the crux of it is, in a given system, is an individual allowed to freely and without restriction own private property? To answer this question is to determine who will govern a man's life. Will he Or will the State. In our republic, we have individual sovereignty. We elect our officials and they have no power over us in as much as can vote them out every two to four years. We have to PARTICIPATE, obviously. We have to VOTe (turnout in this country is so low as to be tragic.)

John Locke wrote in his Two Treatises on Government, "every man has a Property in his own Person."

Locke also said that the individual "has a right to decide what would become of himself and what he would do, and as having a right to reap the benefits of what he did" (wiki).

This is central to our American Democracy. When this concept gets diluted, so do the powers and rights of the individual. For the more power the state has, the more the state will seek to control our lives, usually through laws, regulations, etc intended to "help" us. And once the State begins to feel responsible for the Individual rather than he or she for him/herself,the State will seek ever increasing controls and rules to "protect" the people. Many politicians if not most do this sincerely, they feel passionately that the lives of the people are in their hands. That makes them pretty powerful! As the balance slides away from the individual it slides toward the State, we get powerful central government. The recourse the people have is to vote Statists out of office. The problem is, as we have seen so explicitly with the recent crisis, politicians have the ability to enforce or ignore laws that protect individuals (big money in bed with big government.) Why has Obama's Justice Department not brought anyone in the Banking crisis to trial or put anyone in jail? Hmmm. ) If we the people, allow this to happen, we give up our rights. That is why people like me, are so passionate that in the midst of the corruption we see today in crony capitalism, the answer is not to give MORE power to the collective, or the group, which becomes the State, but to bust those politicians, both Democrat and Republican, call them on their corruption and VOTE THEM OUT. To go the other way, to declare capitalism a failure and our republic a failure when we the people have the power to take both back, to me is a tragic rejection of a system that as I said earlier, has increased the quality of life beyond imagination from one generation to another. Capitalism and Democracy go hand in hand. We have our vote and our sovereignty.

The collective in my view, or the co-op, s really no different from the State, in that what is good for the Group trumps the Individual and you are back to Statism. This is a process that happens slowly and yes, the co-ops you mentioned can be good ideas and can work well on local levels. The problem is in the principle. The idea in and of itself, at its core, holds that the group be more powerful than the one.

I understand the desire for something new. But I think we have to be absolutely ruthless in stress testing our ideas to make sure that the individual will maintain the right to choose his own destiny and not sacrifice himself to the group, the collective, the State, etc. Groups of people can be very positive, but they can also be unruly. Momentum can cause rational people to behave irrationally. Maybe not today, or tomorrow, but over time. The chipping away at individual sovereignty is like punching a small hull in your boat as you push out to sea. It might not sink you right away, but it will. Eventually.

[-] 1 points by primitivetimes (73) 3 years ago

And thank you for your reply. I too appreciate an honest conversation, and have no idea why most people, on both sides of an issue, can't seem to disagree civilly. I also find that most people have simply made up their minds and aren’t interested in thinking critically about things or second guessing their assumptions, as if they’ve never been wrong before. Not to be overly philosophical here, but I think this is one of the main causes of all our problems - everyone thinks they have the answer, when in reality simply having an open mind and being genuinely interested in the truth as opposed to just stubbornly defending views, would solve a lot of our problems.

That being said, I think there are all sorts of holes in your reasoning. Take the Locke quote - “the individual has a right to decide what would become of himself and what he would do, and as having a right to reap the benefits of what he did.” Fine, it's a nice concept. So we get rid of government, and empower the individual to do whatever he wants. But what if that individual’s actions directly impacts the ability of another individual to do what he wants? If we have an unrestrained free market, who will decide the laws that govern the land? Obviously, the most aggressive among us will, and they will make laws that serve their interests. I understand the fear that free market proponents have of a big government controlling their lives. But why isn’t there an equal level of fear of big corporations controlling their lives? A corporation’s only goal is profit, you must understand that. It has no regard for the environment, or the well-being of the populous. They don’t exist out of charity or altruism or collective awareness. If they did, that would be closer to socialism, wouldn’t it? So unless there is some way to regulate them, to make sure they are not exploiting people or trashing the environment or relaxing safety standards, what would stop them?

Read what you wrote here:

--Why has Obama's Justice Department not brought anyone in the Banking crisis to trial or put anyone in jail? Hmmm. ) If we the people, allow this to happen, we give up our rights. That is why people like me, are so passionate that in the midst of the corruption we see today in crony capitalism, the answer is not to give MORE power to the collective, or the group, which becomes the State, but to bust those politicians, both Democrat and Republican, call them on their corruption and VOTE THEM OUT. To go the other way, to declare capitalism a failure and our republic a failure when we the people have the power to take both back, to me is a tragic rejection of a system that as I said earlier, has increased the quality of life beyond imagination from one generation to another.

Ok, so you blame Obama for not putting those responsible for the financial crises in jail, and I couldn’t agree more, but don’t you see how this contradicts your argument? You want the perpetrators to be held accountable, while at the same time arguing for less government interference and a more unrestrained free market. Who else is going to hold them accountable other than some independent body that represents the interests of the people i.e. the government? The government we have today is corrupt for precisely the reasons you would seem to support – they aren’t regulating the free market or "individual sovereignty." And while we're at it, you do realize the reason communism doesn't work has nothing to do with the shortcomings of collective governance, right? It's the opposite - dictators taking over and imposing their will over everyone else. Stalin? Mao? Kim Jong Il? Not a whole lot of collective governance going on in those systems.

You say that in the midst of today’s corruption, the answer is not to give more power to the collective. But then in the next sentence, you say “we the people” have the power to take our republic back. How else do we take power back but collectively? Isn’t the point of all this to have a system that works for everyone, and is NOT dictated by a monolithic minority? You champion the individual, but then you say we the people have the power. Which is it? By this logic, you would be against voting, because that’s a collective decision, and anything collective trumps the individual and is inherently bad. How about Hitler? Should we have just continued to allow him to administer the Holocaust because, hey, that’s his individual sovereignty and we can’t limit him by subjugating him to the will of the collective? If you order pizza with some friends, and one guy hogs all the pizza and leaves none for anyone else, do we celebrate that guy’s ambition and just say it’s his right to exercise his individuality?

Unfettered individual sovereignty affects things. We don’t live in an imaginary realm where the laws of physics don’t apply and people can just hoard, consume, and pursue their own individual desires with no effect on the surrounding environment. A CEO can’t make his millions without using other people to achieve his ends. I get wanting to respect his individual sovereignty, but what about the individual sovereignty of everyone else which is affected by his pursuit of individual sovereignty? Should we penalize people for not having designs on building corporate monopolies or wanting to make billions of dollars? Even if everyone did want to be a CEO, it’s obviously not possible. So do we just throw our hands up and say “That’s the free market. Survival of the fittest”? Or do we try and build a system that works for the majority of people, most of whom simply want to live honest lives and contribute to their communities?

You say- “The collective in my view, or the co-op, s really no different from the State, in that what is good for the Group trumps the Individual and you are back to Statism. This is a process that happens slowly and yes, the co-ops you mentioned can be good ideas and can work well on local levels. The problem is in the principle. The idea in and of itself, at its core, holds that the group be more powerful than the one.”

I hate to break it to you, but what is good for the group IS more powerful than the one, and I don’t know any fair-minded person who can say otherwise. That’s why we vote. When we decide whether to vote for or against proposed legislation, we are basing our decision on whether that legislation would impact our lives positively or negatively, and if the majority of the population decides it would be beneficial, that law should pass. But again, this idea that individual sovereignty should be favored AHEAD of the group? It almost sounds like you would prefer to be dictated to by an individual, rather than have more of a say yourself. If there were no bad seeds among us, and everyone was naturally altruistic and aware of the consequences of their actions, than this philosophy might work – however, again, if that was the case, then it wouldn’t really be about individual sovereignty anymore, would it? The point is, exploitation happens. It doesn’t matter if that exploitation happens at the hands of a ruthless communist dictator, or an unregulated corporate oligarchy – exploitation happens either way, and individual sovereignty is compromised in both cases.

A lot of free market people say that having a more equal society, or a system that thinks collectively first and individually second, would result in everyone becoming robots and stifling innovation, etc. This is a total myth. You want to see robots? Look at the sweatshops overseas producing most of our products, or the low-skilled jobs here. Our society is becoming more and more regimented and unequal as a result of our preference of individual greed over collective welfare, and money over people. It's not fair that a corporation can contribute millions of dollars to influence legislation, and I can't, even though there are way more people like me than there are of them. It's not enough to vote anymore when all politicians and media are owned by corporations, and campaigns are about how much money you can raise.

The reason I think the co-op system has potential is because it decentralizes power. If we produced more locally, it would have all sorts of benefits- it would create jobs, end exploitation, hold people accountable, improve communities, be better for the environment, etc. Shifting the balance of power back to the people and their communities, rather than to an exalted minority ruling class in Washington or Wall Street, would lead to MORE individuality and realization of potential, because people would be governing themselves, for their own benefit. I can provide many specific examples illustrating why this would be a good thing, but I'm rambling here, so I'll stop. Sorry.

[-] 1 points by primitivetimes (73) 3 years ago

I don’t understand. What makes you think fancy cell phones, etc. are exclusive to capitalism? The true innovators and the ones responsible for our technology are not the CEOs, it’s the scientists, inventors, engineers, and workers, and they are not the ones making millions of dollars. The vast majority of the people responsible for the major technological advances in our world – Einstein, Edison, Tesla, Wright brothers, etc. etc. – did so without the so-called capitalist incentive. Steve Jobs was the only exception I can think of – someone who was motivated by both money AND technological progress.

The point of OWS is to suggest that we can have all the benefits we have today without the negative effects of capitalism. Most people are not extremely greedy and bent on world domination, they just want to contribute to society. Yet we have a system that allows the extremely greedy to take control and decide the rules, which, naturally, only benefit them. The role CEOs and bankers play can easily be replaced by normal people who really do care about making society better. Again, the people really responsible for our technology are NOT the ones making crazy amounts of money, which is why it is possible to have everything we have today without capitalism.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

OK, so you're upset about the millions of dollars that the CEOs earn? How do you not understand that the law of supply and demand dictates the salary of CEOs? These people make millions not because they are greedy, or because corporations like to make only some employees rich. The CEOs command high salaries because the company perceives that the leadership skills that these people bring to the table are worth paying a lot of money for. Come on! This is elementary economics! There's no "Evil" in the equation, silly!

[-] 1 points by primitivetimes (73) 3 years ago

"These people make millions not because they are greedy, or because corporations like to make only some employees rich."

Of course they're greedy. If they weren't, they would pay their employees more and there would be no outsourcing.

"The CEOs command high salaries because the company perceives that the leadership skills that these people bring to the table are worth paying a lot of money for."

The company? Who is the company? The workers? I don't know of a big company where the workers have a say in the decision making or income distribution. Again, we're talking about what system is best for the most amount of people, the 99%, and I'm saying that companies can be run in a way that is more beneficial for all their employees, not just the people at the very top, without compromising, and in fact improving, the product/service they provide. This is already happening more and more with worker co-ops.

"Come on! This is elementary economics! There's no "Evil" in the equation, silly!"

There isn't really a such thing as elementary economics, because it depends on the economist you talk to. Most free market economists that benefit from the current system subscribe to your view, where the only goal is endless growth, consumption, and profit. Other economists like David Korten and Robert Reich would say that that is actually a perversion of economics, and that the real goal of economics is to "economize," as in managing a household and figuring out how to most effectively allocate resources and prosperity and ultimately improve the quality of life for the general population.

Anyway, I never said I was upset about the millions CEOs make, I'm just saying that it's not the best approach to benefit the most number of people, which is what this is all about, right? You're saying that the capitalist system is the best system for the most number of people, or else you wouldn't support it, right? All I'm saying is it's a myth that we need capitalism to incentivize people to make fancy cell phones. We can absolutely have them without it.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

The CEOs aren't greedy. They are offered a compensation package, and if it's good enough, they take it. Otherwise, they decline. That's supply and demand. That's how the price of labor is established in a free market, and yes, it's elementary economics.

A company isn't a democracy. If a man wants a job, he can become an employee at a company (at which point he will have to live by the rules of the company), or he can elect to start his own business. He doesn't usually have the option of becoming an employee and then also calling the shots. Nobody's forced to take a job anywhere.

Capitalism is clearly the best system for the most number of people. Because of the profit incentive, it is the most efficient machine for creating jobs. And if a man doesn't want to be an employee, he's free to do his own thing and attempt to be productive on his own terms. That's why the US economy is in a class by itself (though you'll note as we move toward more socialist tendencies, and foreign nations move in the direction of capitalism, the gap is narrowing).

Nope, no cell phones would exist if it weren't for capitalism.

[-] 1 points by OccupyLink (529) 3 years ago

CEOs aren't greedy? Now I have heard it all. Most of them are greedy swine, especially those who work for the banks. There are a few good CEOs who actually look after their corporation and not their own pocket. I'm afraid bank CEOs think all the money in the bank is theirs. They are thieves, and the sooner they go to jail the better. These men, and most of them are men have no goodness in them whatsoever. They are consumate evil and have destroyed the lives of so many of the 99%. Many people have commited suicide because of these evil people. Should we forgive and forget? I say no!!! Go after them, like Simon Wiesenthal did the perpertrators of the Holocaust. Go after these evil criminals. Lets do it!!

[-] 1 points by primitivetimes (73) 3 years ago

--The CEOs aren't greedy. They are offered a compensation package, and if it's good enough, they take it. Otherwise, they decline. That's supply and demand. That's how the price of labor is established in a free market, and yes, it's elementary economics.

I understand how the process works. I thought the point of this conversation was whether or not that system is good for society. Obviously, you think it is. I don't.

--A company isn't a democracy. If a man wants a job, he can become an employee at a company (at which point he will have to live by the rules of the company), or he can elect to start his own business. He doesn't usually have the option of becoming an employee and then also calling the shots. Nobody's forced to take a job anywhere.

The problem with that is that the free market system allows the most aggressive among us to take control, buy politicians, and influence laws to make them more favorable to their interests, and less favorable to everyone elses. The result is that it's impossible for a new business owner to be ethical and stay competitive, and it's impossible for a lower skilled employee to find a job with adequate wages and worker protections. Sure, no one's forcing them to take any job, but everyone has to pay the rent, so if every job offers roughly the same wage and worker rights, the idea of them having a choice is really an illusion. Of course, you and I might disagree on what we consider ethical. As an example, I would consider it unethical for a company to pay a fulltime employee a wage that doesn't cover basic costs of living in whatever city they're in, whatever job it is. You seem to think that if it's legal or allowed by the free market, then it's automatically ethical. Fair enough, we disagree there.

--Capitalism is clearly the best system for the most number of people. Because of the profit incentive, it is the most efficient machine for creating jobs. And if a man doesn't want to be an employee, he's free to do his own thing and attempt to be productive on his own terms. That's why the US economy is in a class by itself (though you'll note as we move toward more socialist tendencies, and foreign nations move in the direction of capitalism, the gap is narrowing).

Wow, I couldn't disagree more. First of all, jobs aren't inherently good. It's important that they also pay a living wage, have decent benefits, don't exploit their employees, etc., and the profit incentive is EXACTLY what causes that. The reason companies cut costs, strip worker rights, and outsource jobs is exactly because of the profit incentive - the desire of the people at the top to keep more of the profits themselves and give less to the employees who enable those profits.

As far as our economy being in a class by itself, by any measure, the more socialist countries such as the Scandinavian countries have a far greater quality of life than we do, which I can attest to having lived in Sweden. I'm not interested in GDP or number of skyscrapers. I'm interested in happiness and quality of life, for ALL its citizens. The U.S. is far behind many countries in this regard.

--Nope, no cell phones would exist if it weren't for capitalism.

Ok, not much to respond to there. We disagree, but I respect your views.

[-] 1 points by jjoplin (25) 3 years ago

I think you need to study some history and take a look at systems across the world. Capitalism has increased the standard of living by the greatest factor for the most people everywhere it has been allowed. You might do some reading and find that Raul Castro is quietly relaxing rules and regulations in Cuba so that its citizens can run their own businesses and even sell property. This is a massive shift for this communist country and the people of Cuba are thrilled with the idea of owning their own destinies. Go ahead and do some research I think you will find this to be true. Do you wonder why the Berlin Wall fell? Do you wonder why the Soviet Union collapsed? Do you wonder what it would be like to live in North Korea today? Do you realize that the Chinese government takes land from private citizens when it wants to and imprisons people who say things they do not like?

The fact that you think Steve Jobs is the only creator to have been motivated by a capitalist system makes me think you must be very naive and/or very young. Where ever you are right now, look around the room. Nearly everything you can see right now was created by a person who benefitted but being its inventor and we have all benefited from their inventions. Nothing gets created under Communism nor Socialism but tyranny. Go find some people who have lived under such systems and ask them what it is/or was like. Did you know that blue jeans sold for many, many times their US value on the black market in the USSR ? Do you know why? BECAUSE THEY WANTED US MADE JEANS AND COUDN"T GET THEM IN USSR!. See the story of Levi Strass, the first mass manufacturer of denim: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Levi_Strauss And how could we live without Velcro? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Velcro

Anyway, I am not sure why you think being rewarded for your work is a bad thing. The problems we have today are not due to CEOS making too much money. You are being sold a story by politicians that is a total lie. Fortunately, a new Gallup poll shows most Americans do not agree with you, so I am feeling more relaxed these days when I read posts like yours.
http://tinyurl.com/Big-Business-Not-The-Problem

Why do you not live in Sweden now? Just curious.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

Likewise to you. Yours is a fair POV.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

Since we can't even agree on what the problem IS - keep on protesting until you cross the line and then everyone will know what the problem is.

[-] 1 points by TLydon007 (1278) 3 years ago

The majority agree. Campaign finance is the main issue. We've come together to discuss ways of addressing it, while others stay at home and scorn anyone with the bravery to protest such a big issue.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

I cannot find what the majority agree upon. Some mention campaign finance, others the unequal distribution of wealth, lack of jobs, college costs, the 1%, wall street, WalMart, outsourcing, big banks, the West Coast ports, government, etc etc etc.

I just have not been able to identify the majority issues herein. If I were to push a shopping cart through these posts, I would expect it to be full when I get to the end of the aisle, but might not contain anything that I wanted in the first place - so I just leave the cart by the door and go home.

I regret having to say this, but I sincerely believe that this movement has perfected the "boy who cried wolf" scenerio. It has been all over the place crying "wolf" through its great theme of OCCUPY _, and today, anything that you put in the blank is not getting anyone's attention. We have heard too many cries of "wolf" and have thus turned a deaf ear to your cries.

[-] 1 points by TLydon007 (1278) 3 years ago

You're right. Everyone is crying wolf. Our democracy is perfect and the perfect legislative outcome is always the result of selling it to the highest bidder. Inequality is just fine and will never lead down a path towards more and more exploitative relationships between the haves and have-nots. Nobody should protest at all because Wall Street has everything under control. Lets all drink to Kool-Aid together, shall we??

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

You are what we call a defeatist. Lots of luck and help yourself to more Kool Aid. Enjoy the rest of the Kool-Aid if there is any left in your group.

All I know about you is that nothing is going right. If you want to share more regarding your reasons for the above statements, I will listen. Just DO NOT refer me to someone's ideas that you have drank to.

[-] 0 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

So, to you, it's just about money and betting? The point of protesting is to make change. Starting a company isn't going to change anything.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

It sure did for the family, stockholders, employees and others involved with WalMart, General Electric, AT&T, GOOGLE, YAHOO, and about 100 small businesses on the street where my store is located.

You statement is so full of air - it has not value - it DOES change things - it changed everything that today you are protesting. If it had not been for those companies, you might be canning pickles and smoking meat today instead of posting on this site

SwissMiss - I have been following your posts - once in awhile you do have some very good points and do a good job of sharing - however - what I do not understand is why you end with a statement that completely undermines the good points that you make. "Starting a company isn't going to change anything" simply is not a reasonable statement - even some of the OWS people probably will be starting their own companies in the future - that certainly is going to change something.l

[-] -2 points by dillenger (-2) from Brady, TX 3 years ago

ows epic fail

[-] 4 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

That's what they all say, my friend... I suppose you think that the labor movement; the anti-war movement; the suffragist movement and the civil rights movements were also "epic fails" Let's not forget what Ghandi did...I suppose you would have called him an "epic fail" also.

"First, they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win"

[-] 0 points by mountaineer (16) 3 years ago

anti-war moement? guess you have missed the last ten years, seems like i still have my breathern fighting for you right to do "anti" war protest

[-] 3 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

You've missed the last century...

[-] 3 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

You believe that going to war is about "protecting freedom"??? You are delusional.

[-] 2 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

You are so right. I just love those patriots who spew that over and over. What freedoms have wars given me.... as a woman? NO WAR has given women the right to vote, the right to own land, the right to make my own choices about reproduction, the right to marry who I wish, the right to earn equal pay as men for equal work, etc., etc., etc. NO WAR in the history of peoplekind has ever given me rights as a woman!!!!

In fact, it was a lot of servicemen who spat in the faces of the suffragists.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

Well, there was one little war where my GGGGrandfather gave his life so that you:

  1. Can own land.

  2. Can fight for all the other privileges that you want.

Would you be willing to give what he gave so that you can have what you DO have today, even though it might not be everything that you WANT. He did not die so that you or any of us can have everything that we WANT - only the right to be free to want it.

[-] 0 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

Thank you Swissmiss I always enjoy your comments. You are absolutely right. I just cannot understand how so many people still believe this nonsense...it is so obvious to some but I suppose they are the ones with critical thinking skills. They need to read "War is a Racket" by Smedley Butler!

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[-] 1 points by owsowns (12) from Las Vegas, NV 3 years ago

Hopefully not, my friend, hopefully not.

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

correction...they succeeded in hurting the working man...what a disgrace. And they can't apologize for the millions in damage they have done. I am now embarrassed to say I financially backed this group in the beginning. If I would have known now. This is coming from a 99%er who can't afford a house, has a daughter on the way, benefits have been cut....but I'm working hard, in school, and giving it my all. I will succeed and not by demanding more from the "1%" or all tax payers, but by my own hard work and determination.

[-] 1 points by TLydon007 (1278) 3 years ago

Well, I guess that's your fault for thinking this movement was a Ron Lawl 2012 rally.(I looked at your other posts)

Strange that despite all the self-sufficient rhetoric of Libertarians can't help you buy your first home, while I'm buying my third and am not blind to growing inequality, nor unsympathetic.

Perhaps if Ron Lawl succeeds in creating greater inequality I'll consider being a benevolent master to you have-nots that serve me. But if I can't, please understand that standing on your head is the only way I can stay on top and not fall down to your level.

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

My respects to you on owning your third house. That's impressive. I do support Ron Lawl, but that's beside the point. I'm on the side of the working man. Unsympathetic?...no merit on that one. I spend my free time at habitat for humanity and various charities. My mother is from a place where there isn't running water all day. I know first hand what inequality is, but I don't expect other working people to have to suffer the consequences. They're not at fault here.
Sorry if I struck a nerve....enjoy your third house. Maybe you can donate one to the movement. Cheers!

[-] 3 points by TLydon007 (1278) 3 years ago

Very admirable to volunteer for Habitat. I donate to them once a year. I'm sorry, we get so many people misrepresenting themselves as former supporters that I've grown cynical. I support your views and always hold Habitat volunteers in high regard.

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

No worries.....I think I understand where you are coming from. I'm open to other points of view and I think the intentions behind today's actions are also honorable. I just feel for the workers that were negatively impacted like those who couldn't pick up their loads. I want to see change, but not at their expense. I just wish the movement could find more ways to direct their actions towards the government.

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

I think people will be impacted in some way any time there is a protest somewhere. The importance of such protests is to work toward bringing about change.... permanent change that will benefit the most people, so that they can afford to buy a house and much more.

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

This only hurt the working man in my opinion....that's all I'm saying. I'm standing up for those whose pay checks were hurt by this misdirected outburst. Education and hard work is what will benefit each individual. Preventing people from working, like yesterday, creates a divide in the working class and served no purpose. That's my opinion and I don't think I'm alone on this one. I supported the beginning of this movement, but actions like yesterdays I will never support.

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[-] -1 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

You all need to get real about your complaints. How about coming to my area of the country and I will show you the following:

  1. 100,000 people that do not have running water ANY day
  2. 100,000 people that in effect cannot EVER own their own home
  3. 100,000 people 50,000 of who are unemployed
  4. 100,000 people that would see any of you as RICH including most of the OWS members and you too guero1nd.
  5. 100,000 people that for the most part see advanced education as a luxury that their parents could NOT afford.
  6. 100,000 people, 50% of who live about 50 miles from the nearest grocery store.
  7. 100,000 people with 50% unemployment, the majority of whom would have to travel 50-100-1,000 miles to find employement.

  8. And last but not least, some of the nicest, happiest, and most thankful people you will ever meet. Sorry you are so unhappy in your situation.

[-] 1 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

And this place is where...?

Who said I was unhappy?....if anybody seems bitter it would appear to be you. Why else would you tell people to get "real" about something and list complaints (whining) 1-7. Thanks for sharing the "realness" lol.

5.....education is free.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

What I meant by my post, there are always groups (and sometimes very large ones) that do not have it as good as you do. We all seek better ways and improved economic status, but too often we do not see the big picture. The entire focus of these posts has been directed against the 1%. What do you think the bottom 25% think of a lot of the complaints herein. Often our complaints are so self centered that others "below" our status see us for what we really are in their eyes.

  1. Advanced education for most of the people I mentioned stops after grade 12.

You need to travel the Navajo Reservation in Northern Arizona to see what a lot of the world really looks like. This area is larger than some of the states in America - but consider the statistics. Compared to a lot of the residents there, I am in the very top of the top of the 1%.

[-] 1 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

I disagree, education isn't something that has to be provided (at any grade/age/location) as much as it should be sought.

Again, I stand with the workers who were negatively impacted by the port shut downs and their families who rely on every paycheck. They shouldn't have to suffer the consequences.

[-] 1 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

Education should be sought - I agree - but the seeking was done at the state level by the parents and citizens of the individual state and most states have attendance laws up though 12th grade. After that, I agree with you, it should be sought and not mandatory. This seeking results in the various educational opportunities that we have today, associate programs, bachelor, master etc, plus all of the tech programs, on the job programs, etc. No problems with the existing state programs - real problems when the Feds get involved and try to put their agendas into the state's business.

I stand with the workers TOO. Several family members are or have been over-the-road independent truckers and their very lives depend upon their ability to keep their rigs running where they want to go and when they want to go. A strike such as, the port strikes hits these guys and gals really hard - If you know what a rig costs today along with the tremendous increases in fuel costs - you know what they are up against on a daily basis. They SHOULD not have to suffer as someone tries to make their point - whatever that way.

[-] 1 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

Agreed. 100%

[-] 6 points by KVNLGN (154) 3 years ago

If the big news networks do not pick up the west coast shutdown tonight, there will be a major blow to the credibility of these networks. They will slowly lose more of their brainwashed audience. Keep it up !!!

[-] 1 points by usernameah (36) 3 years ago

Most MSNs either omitted it entirely or glossed over it real briefly. For people who do not actively seek out OWS-related news online, they (the vast majority of the public) remain mostly ignorant about today's happenings, exactly how the media wants to keep us -- uninformed, uneducated and isolated from each other.

[-] 1 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 3 years ago

Hmm... Maybe printing off news items from this site and placing them on community bulletin boards is not such a bad idea.

Raising awareness doesn't have to be expensive or elaborate.

[-] 1 points by JosephCouture (45) 3 years ago

I am now a non-mainstream journalist who once worked in major media. But even from the outside and with a sympathetic view overall, I have concerns about our local Occupy movement.

By accident I ran into some of the Occupy activists. We had a few beers and we talked. Read "Drunk With Occupy London" at www.josephcouture.com

[-] 6 points by Thisisthetime (200) from Kahlotus, WA 3 years ago

The People that are part of the Occupy Ports are Very Brave. Protect Each Other.Thank you and Please keep up the Good Work.

[-] -1 points by armchairecon1 (169) 3 years ago

is the definition of brave to putting themselves and others at risk for no purpose at all? in that case, yes, they are brave.

[-] 4 points by adrianb (6) from Midwest City, OK 3 years ago

no purpose at all??? you must haved missed something!?!?!?

[-] 1 points by armchairecon1 (169) 3 years ago

what does shutting down ports accomplish?

[-] 4 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

What was accomplished by the labor struggles (strikes, shutdowns,etc.) in the early part of the 20th century?

[-] 1 points by armchairecon1 (169) 3 years ago

they were protesting unsafe working conditions

what is your point? what does shutting down ports have to do with labor

[-] 3 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

Are you really asking me "what does shutting down ports have to do do with labor"???? Perhaps I should not even bother until you do your own research. Try reading about the history of the labor movement. My point is that strikes and shutdowns have been used throughout history... It was the labor struggles of the early 20th century that opposed barbaric working conditions; low wages; child labor, etc. An ignorant populace is so easily manipulated....

[-] 2 points by armchairecon1 (169) 3 years ago

i guess I am asking you that question.. i wasnt aware of the link between ports and labor beside ports using organized labor.. but im not sure how stopping people from getting to work accomplishes anything (ie: they arent willing participants, you are forcing them from not getting paid)

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

It disrupts business.... as in disrupting the companies (the owners) from making money. Get it?

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

LOL, if the companies (owners) loose money, who do you think suffers? You know how they recoup that money? Firing the lowest on the totem pole or raising already over priced products. You people just don't get it. You are not hurting anyone that you think you are. These rich bastards don't care. You are only making yourself out to be a bad guy. You are loosing supporters this way. When you try to hurt their income, you are hurting everyone but them.

Use common sense and think without hate, and you will accomplish so much more than you ever imagined.

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[-] 1 points by jdnreha (85) 3 years ago

Yes, they have in the past and present helped out with Labor laws and wages. I have been involved with a strike to get higher wages. So, inform the ignorant populace real quick, what is this strike aiming to accomplish? I dont want something general, but something that is solid and can be done.

[-] 2 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

It affects the bottom line of the companies (the owners) and demands that their workers be treated justly across the board in regard to the things mentioned in the letter.

[-] 0 points by jdnreha (85) 3 years ago

Whats your definition of justly across the board?

I work in a group and we all get treated based off of our jobs. Im expected to perform my job like the person across from me needs to do his.

[-] 1 points by screechy (2) 3 years ago

There has never in history been a labor movement in which a bunch of nihilist rich kids prevented the working class from doing their jobs. That's not a labor movement, it's a movement of self-righteous rich kids who see working people as pawns they can use to make a point.

You guys have no relation to any of the movements you compare yourselves to. You are not Joe Hill, not Rosa Parks, not Gandhi, not MLK. Those movements had supporters from outside but they were lead by the principles--the people being oppressed. Those who apparently don't need to work to survive stealing bread from the mouths of those who do is not a social justice movement. It's a PR stunt by spoiled rotten college kids on the backs of the people who make their coddled existences possible.

The establishment media likes you guys and that's why they're not giving this a lot of coverage.

[-] 2 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

Read the new post from the truck drivers...

It is not even apparent what you believe in. I can't believe what you are saying. How on earth can you call this a PR stunt? You sound like a troll....

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

Christian Vega was reported as saying, "I lost $600 today." He has to feed his family and this prevented him from doing so. Would you agree that he is owed an apology...a $600 apology? Why does he have to pay for this outburst? Shameful if you ask me.

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

"I'm just barely getting on my feet again after two years, and now I gotta go a day without pay while somebody else has something to say that I'm not really sure is relevant to the cause," trucker Chuck Baca told CNN affiliate KGO.

Port officials say shutting down their facilities will only cost workers and their communities wages and tax revenue.

"Protesters wanted to send a message to the 1% but they are impacting the 99%," said Portland port spokesman Josh Thomas. The stoppage is resulting in "lost shifts, lost wages and delays," he said.

Port of San Diego board chairman Scott Peters issued an open letter to the community on Sunday asking that protesters not disrupt work.

"The Port of San Diego is made up of working people with families who serve the public each day by helping to bring in goods that are important to the people of the San Diego region," Peters wrote.

"They are the 99 percent, the gardeners, the maintenance workers, the dock workers, the Harbor Police officers, the office workers, the environmental workers -- all working to improve the quality of life in San Diego Bay and on its surrounding lands," he said. "It is these people who would be hurt by a blockade of our Port."

[-] 3 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

Give me a break man... I am talking about the open letter from the truck drivers. as in "rank and file" Those that oppose are generally are in the leadership positions and I think you know that. You are quoting CNN?? It figures... No body ever made meaningful changes by being polite; non-violent is a different matter, entirely....

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

I respect your opinion GarnetMoon, but I also respect the workers opinions. That's fine that the movement doesn't have to be polite, but could they at least take it easy on the working man. Stop affecting their paychecks. Stop causing millions in damage and clean up after themselves. Is that too outrageous? Stunts like this is causing more harm to the movement than anything else. That's my humble opinion.

[-] 4 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

I think you misunderstand. If successful, the strike will help get all truckers united and not subject to 1099 status without the ability to unionize. The $600.00 they lose today will be made up for a hundred times over in the course of their lives with health care, pensions, a good, steady wage, a 40 week with time and a half, and enforceable safety rules.

There have always been a few workers afraid of the beginnings of organizing labor, and opposed to them, because they are afraid they will lose what little they have. Management does its best to keep them afraid and divided. But after the union comes in, they see their economic lives improve remarkably.

This port action is not to hurt workers, but to help them immensely. I hope it goes national and viral.

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

"You view this action as hurting workers. I view it as helping them immensely (and with their overall consent)."

I don't think there's sufficient proof to overall consent. Innocent working people are being exploited to push ideals and that is shameful. One day out of their paycheck can make or break some of these families, but that's not being taken into consideration. Many of us feel this way which will force us to create a sub-movement and distance ourselves from OWS in these types of actions.

[-] 3 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

We have different perceptions. Mine come from years of organizing labor.

I have no doubt your heart is in the right place. If you choose to split off, that's up to you, and as misguided as I personally think that is, you must follow your conscience, and I will not try to convince you otherwise.

But I am confident that this was the right thing to do, and was entirely ethical. I think that the ideals here were less important than action and real-world activism. I would like to see it go viral, and gain thousands of union members on the front lines in support.

If you choose to go your own way, I wish your efforts to help fellow workers all success possible. That goal, if not the tactics, are shared by both of us.

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

I'm not able to reply to your last comment so I'm doing it here. I would also like to repeat my comments. I stand by the workers that were hurt by this protest. I would like to see protests aimed towards the government and protests that do not hurt any of the working class. As a 99%er that's my vote and there are plenty of us that feel this way. Like others have mentioned....the truck drivers have bills to pay and mouths to feed. They are not happy about the current situation either, but they are not protesting in a way that affects your livelihood. This protest had no affect on the 1% but a huge impact on the 99%. As a 99%er....my vote is to stop these types of demonstrations that hurt the workers that we are supposed to be fighting for.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

Considering that the truckers seemed to support these demonstrations, as did the dock workers union, I don't see what harm was done.

Are you aware of the similar actions taken, on a far grander scale, in the 1910s, 20s and 30s, that created the labor movement and gave birth to thriving unions?

I agree that OWS and its satellites should go to Washington more, but it is not an either/or proposition. OWS must act like an octopus: one headed and many armed in order to really be effective in changing the course of this country for the better, including the course the drivers are currently forced to take. Those drivers can't strike: they would never get a contract again. OWS is doing it for them so that they will eventually gain the benefits they have worked so hard to earn, and without a permanent loss of their livelihood if they took action themselves.

The difference between us, I think, is that you see a one day loss of income as a terrible thing. I see the long term, day to day loss of income they live with now as far worse and well worth fighting. As I mentioned, organizing labor is not often pretty. But the result can be beautiful. You view this action as hurting workers. I view it as helping them immensely (and with their overall consent).

[-] 0 points by Just1MoreVoice (76) 3 years ago

I'm sure your heart is in the right place, but ethically any attempt to help them in such a far reaching manner needed to be coordinated with the dockworkers and with their union. It is precisely this kind of arrogance that will turn potential supporters who are politically independent away from the movement.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

It was coordinated. The Union leadership signed off on it unofficially.

[-] -1 points by jbell78 (152) 3 years ago

You have no idea how fucked and unconstitutional your point of view is. "Most of the 99% don't understand that even if it seems like we're hurting them today by costing them money, in the long run we'll help them 100x over IF we're successful". This is the very type of totalitarian "do what I say even if you disagree" thinking that the movement is supposedly fighting. Keep making decisions for the 99%. Soon enough, you'll make one so stupid that it ends this whole movement.

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

There is nothing unconstitutional about non-violent civil action. And according to reports I read, the dockworker's union backed the action. In fact, they advised their members to stay home "for safety reasons," a thinly veiled way of showing solidarity.

You have clearly never fought for justice and equity for your fellow workers in your sorry, selfish, myopic life. You also have a breathtaking ignorance of history, especially labor history. You must be truly ashamed if you then lash out at others who are working to help, and totally clueless about how organizing labor happens in the real world. Your characterization of these activists as never having been successful is based only on your unreasoned animus, without a shred of evidence to back it up. No doubt if any of their number was overtly, publicly, recognizably successful, you would be the first one to scream "Hypocricy!"

[-] -1 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

I definitely respect your opinion, but we'll have to agree to disagree on this one. I wish we could take a fair poll from the workers affected on this and my heart tells me they would disagree, but that's just speculation. I am for protests aimed at government and big business's ability to pay for policy. In my opinion, today's action hurt the working man and not the "1%". That to me is unfair.

[-] 3 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

I used to organize for my union. I wasn't a union official, but just a worker who got sick and tired of managers and owners stealing my money (literally) firing people without cause and with no recourse, demanding as much as 80 hour workweeks without compensation, not providing a safe work place, health insurance, etc.

Yes, there was sacrifice made by many workers at the beginning of the process, and many were afraid and resentful of actions I and my colleagues took. It cost some money. There was unbelievable harassment. (I even had a contract put out on my life by a business owner). But the rights we won at the end not only covered those losses, but made sure we had a voice and could not be exploited as easily as before. Those rights, and additional pay, benefits, and all the rest, were shared equally by those workers who helped in the organizing effort and those who worked against it alike.

It was the opposite of unfair.

Today by itself did little except fire a shot across the bow of big business, of corporations. It sent a clear message that for all the policies big business has bought, the workers can still have the power to demand their rights. The 1% just got a bit afraid. That's GREAT! It will need to be repeated by massive numbers of people, and the threat of further actions made real if it is to have a real, durable, positive effect. But on the whole, as a beginning, this was very positive for workers everywhere, whether they are aware of it or not.

[-] -2 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

I'm replying to your above post: Three answers......(it won't allow me to reply up there any more. -Why should they have to find another area of work? They should do so because they are accepting to follow the status quo that they are supposed to be against. If this type of work is unacceptable they should boycott the company. By doing so, this would push a substitute to take its place. One that meets the required conditions. If I work for a company, I do so because I am part of a team that I believe in. Sure the owner makes more than I do and rightfully so. In my opinion it is wrong to tell people how to run THEIR businesses. If they cannot find support (employees) it's because they are doing something incorrectly.

[-] 4 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

"If they cannot find support (employees) it's because they are doing something incorrectly."

There always will be people who will work in unjust conditions, as long as unjust conditions are allowed and those people need a means of paying bills and buying food and shelter in a monetary sytem. Saying that if a company is doing something wrong, then they will not be able to find employees is completely inaccurate. There are thousands upon thousands of examples of people working in unjust conditions, just because they have to, and they believe they are powerless to do anything about it. And that is the goal of those in power.... to keep those who are "below" them afraid and believing that they are indeed powerless to change their situations.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

I suggest you read my answers again, and read the statement written by those truckers. Even if they wanted to change jobs, THERE AREN'T ANY JOBS.

In a jobs shortage, potential employees compete with each other to get whatever scraps are available, so replacement workers are forced to outbid each other to the BOTTOM. Instead of improving the situation for workers, it makes all workers even more vulnerable to exploitation, unfair labor practices, substandard and unsafe working conditions, and slave wages.

Tat is already happening in every jobs sector in the country. Of all the people who lost their jobs during this recession, only ONE IN SEVEN who have found new work are earning as much as they did before. Wages are going DOWN because of a glut of labor and a shortage of jobs.

[-] 3 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

I appreciate your reply, guero1nd. The open letter is written by the rank and file who are being exploited... Do you think that the employers that we are targeting have been "easy" on these workers? Of course not. This is the type of action that is needed. we can't afford to be passive anymore. You are aware that the occupations have always cleaned up after themselves. Read the comment below mine-the one by epa1nter... Can't you see the bigger picture? Courage, my friend don't be afraid to stand up to tyranny. The PTB rely on fear-mongering; they always have and will. We are finally realizing that we are unstoppable.

[-] -1 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

Question...just to play devils advocate....if the work is so awful, why don't they look for other work? They could develop themselves into different occupations. I'm sure there are many that would take their jobs in a heartbeat. Wouldn't this push for reform and higher wages?

[-] 4 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

Three answers. First, why should they, or anyone else, have to find another area of work instead of demanding their rights as workers? Many truckers have also sunk their life savings into their rigs (more than $100,000 dollars) and have to pay the banks for the loans on them. The open letter they posted here also should give you an idea about how they feel.

Second, there ARE no other jobs. There is only one job available for every four applicants right now in this recession.

Third, your suggestion would not lead to reform or higher wages. The workers would simply be replaced by those willing to take the jobs at even lower pay. People are desperate, and without jobs of any sort, are willing to work for slave wages, and employers are more than happy to take advantage of that.

[-] 3 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

Amen epa1nter...

[-] 2 points by jdnreha (85) 3 years ago

Most people are under the impression that there are no job offers.

BTW, There is a high demand for Truckers. Some companies are employing and not 1099.

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

My cousin is a truck driver, and what epa1nter has said about the investments drivers put into their rigs is true. Paying for a rig is no different than paying for a house, and one cannot just walk away from a loan or a contract for buying one.... like you suggest.

And, my question also is.... why should people be forced or expected to change careers when their employees are being completely unjust to them? Why can't they continue doing what they're doing? Why is the focus on the worker to change careers instead of the focus being on forcing those in power to change their unjust ways????

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[-] -1 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

Ignorant maybe. But most labor movements involve the laborers. WHO the ____ are you to decide that those truck drivers and dock workers need or even want your help.

YOU are the ones forcing your agendas where they do not rightly belong.

You protest what you do not know about. You expect the farmers of America to join you in your grand protest - even during a period when those same farmers are in the best financial position they have ever been in. AND you can preach to the people on here to do their research - you are nothing but phoeny when you do these protests at random as you are doing.

[-] 1 points by inlikeflint (42) 3 years ago

Oh... so people should kowtow to corporations and be happy with working for nothing.

Thanks for explaining that one to us. Nothing like submitting to the will and agenda of a corporation.

May I have some more oil with my Gulf seafood please?

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[-] 1 points by inlikeflint (42) 3 years ago

Dear geriatric tea bagging nazi,

Your bi-focal prescription is out of date. Thank you for supporting corporate greed and perpetuating the cause of the 1%.

Thank you for condoning environmental disasters. You rule old dude!

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

Wow.... you are so ignorant of this movement. I'm not trying to be mean, but your statements make you appear to be very ignorant.

ig·no·rant/ˈignərənt/ Adjective:
Lacking knowledge or awareness in general; uneducated or unsophisticated. Lacking knowledge, information, or awareness about something in particular: "ignorant of astronomy".

[-] 0 points by Mark01 (82) 3 years ago

it shows the powers in charge who has the real power. It also hits them in their bottom line & shows that the workers are united and it's how u start a union.

[-] 2 points by jdnreha (85) 3 years ago

You realise that the "real powers" can suffer thru a few months of low or no profits? What would really scare me is if the "real powers" decided to not take such a hit and close down the ports. Think about all the imports that we have, if the ports closed for a month, the impact on the city would be devastating. If cost of living wasent already at a all time high, it would almost double.

[-] 1 points by Mark01 (82) 3 years ago

they wouldnt do that. they'll make a deal first

[-] 1 points by jdnreha (85) 3 years ago

Do what? suffer or shut down the ports? They have already suffer. The ports are shutting down. Yeah, they will take a short term hit.

What makes you think they will make a deal first anyways? Ive seen it where the "man" just has to hold out until the government steps in. It's sad but true, which is one reason I hate government interference. (BTW, The strike that im referring to is the teachers of hawaii in 2002)

[-] 1 points by Mark01 (82) 3 years ago

they will make deal when its cheaper & easier to make deal then not

[-] 1 points by jdnreha (85) 3 years ago

They will ask the government before then. I thought the same with the teacher strike. Its not like back in the day, where the gov did do anything and just let them figure it out.

I hope your right and that it would good deal, but thats just hope.

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[-] 2 points by Jumphrey (106) 3 years ago

So you're saying that any action which is meant to disrupt businesses and make corrupt corporations lose money because of their greed shouldn't...... disrupt business or make them lose money? All because, lo and behold, these companies have employees who are underpaid, under-respected, and left without benefits?

Thanks but we'll keep our strategy ideas the way they are. They actually mean something that way.

[-] 1 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

or is it to affect the lives of various working people negatively? Can someone tell me what was achieved here and why there is no apology to the people (99%ers) who lost money? This is an outrage!!!

[-] -2 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

They just screwed thousands of average Joe's, likely working paycheck to paycheck. Not to mention all the lost wages all through the system. This little hiccup could be enough to put a little company out of business. Who do you blame then? Who helps out the folks that could be unemployed because of YOU? Stop thinking you are heroes for being lazy unemployed self important a holes! Protest all you want. Don't hurt any regular people in the process. Think about your actions instead of being so "brave"...err I mean selfish.

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

Who's selfish???

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

The protesters that just hurt the people they are supposedly trying to help. They hurt the little guy. Some may be OK with it, but I am positive there are folks out there that just lost wages that were keeping them above water. All because someone else, with nothing to loose, decided, hey lets shut down the ports, that will teach them. It accomplished nothing accept making many low income employees loose income that is vital. It didn't hurt anyone they were trying to hurt. The billionaire corporations just got a tax break, while you just took food off the table of some poor schmuck, you all think needs to be saved in spite of themselves. Selfish

[-] 1 points by GarnetMoon (424) 3 years ago

You are very ignorant of history, my friend. You should start by educating yourself about the true history of labor in this country.

What is your answer? Are you seriously suggesting we simply sit and let the PTB do things for us??? Stop wasting precious time and get out of the way of those that are actually making a difference.

Change comes about by those who put themselves into unpopular positions; who risk being demonized and laughed at. Who said change was easy?

The Europeans stand up to tyranny...it's about time that we in the US follow suit. We have been "a nation of sheep" for too long.

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[-] 0 points by Crimzon (91) from Arizona City, AZ 3 years ago

Wait unemployed everyone gets help when theyre unemployed, lose their job etc?

Son of a... I wonder why I was denied un-employment and the government sided with 3 major corporations!!! Who are trillion dollar companies. Wonder why i'm facing eviction, homelessness, etc

Occupy are my heroes!!! They may be able to change this world, this life, the hard knock reality your so blindsided by!!!

Its time we had a voice instead of being trampled and hung out to dry! Because guess what its people like us who suffer the most and were supposed to accept it?

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

I have no idea why you were denied unemployment. I received unemployment for an entire year. I am still unemployed and could get more, but I really feel that it would be too much. I do not blame anyone for my situation but myself. MY actions put me here, not some big bad corporation. I do not disagree with the fight to separate corporations and the govt, but they are not the reason you are poor and out of work. You made life choices that put you in that situation just as I did.

[-] 1 points by Crimzon (91) from Arizona City, AZ 3 years ago

So I chose to be born poor?

To live in a apartment studio with my father and share a king size bed. I chose hot dogs every night because its all we could afford?

I chose to be denied financial aid and schooling, because when the time came even though I was 18 and an adult they went off my mothers base pay and refused me?

You are saying because I was not readily entitled to schooling, my mom took off and left me with my father. We struggled and I never understood until I got older why "We couldn't afford this or that?" I chose to be poor?

I don't know about your state, but here 24 is the legal age to gain financial aid for college.

Now I can't say I had much choice in getting kicked out at 14 years old and working most of my teenage life. I can't say I chose a minimum wage lifestyle after having to provide for myself so long.

Sir I was lucky enough the woman that took me in gave me a room and let me pay rent. You think America gave two shits what happened to me that my own flesh and blood could cast me out?

No when I went to go to college, they said your parents make too much money... Even though my parents hadn't lifted a finger since the day I was kicked to the curb, even though my family has nothing to do with me?

Do you want to know why? Because I was a mistake a drunken night a half breed My racist white side can't get over the fact I'm half mexican. My mexican side could care less, my dad deserved better...

I definitely chose my situation bro , I chose it all I wanted this life when all I ever desired was to make something out of myself to prove everyone wrong, because in the end I was labeled a misfit a reject just trash by family...

[-] 1 points by fasternova (9) 3 years ago

Did I say I was rich? I was poor as shit, quit school etc. I received a GED for free, which I am sure 99% of Americans can do. I made some better choices and I am better off than my parents at my age. I am not rich by any means but I am not doing bad either. I don't pretend to know your life story, I am just saying too many people like to blame everyone but themselves for the life they have. I know there are people running these corporations that had nothing when they were growing up. They figured it out. Many rich people were born with nothing. You can do anything you want if you try.

I am not trying to be rude or whatever to you. Life sucks sometimes, but it's not the rich peoples fault is all I'm saying.

[-] 1 points by Crimzon (91) from Arizona City, AZ 3 years ago

Yeah I know, just a bit tense lately with unemployment denials / the many interviews adn the many rejections.

Sorry if I snapped, hard when someone sizes you up before they know where you've been and your right things will get better eventually.

[-] 5 points by mc2150 (14) 3 years ago

Lets unite and show these corporate scum what we the people are capable of!

[-] 5 points by bkoatz (14) 3 years ago

Solidarity from NY! Keep up the fight against Government Sachs! Occupy Everything!

[-] 5 points by XXAnonymouSXX (455) 3 years ago

Keep it up brotgers and sisters. We are with you.

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[-] 4 points by tazbo (10) 3 years ago

yes people are stopped from working for a day or 2, but the point needs to be made for the big picture, that you can not violate peoples rights while you protest the rights of people in other countries. our gov. has been using this exscuse for years to take over/police other countries as we try to shove democracy down their throat. this proves our gov. is filled with hypocrites and we r entering in to a police state, may not be long before martial law.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

You post does not hold together as a coherent plan of action. If it is wrong for the gov. to use this excuse for what it does, WHY is it ok for the protesters to do the same thing against the very citizens that you claim to be helping in stopping them from working for a day or two. In the cast of the truck drivers, they were effected for more than a day or two, in that they had future schedules to meet and sitting still for a day or two while at the direction of some protestor is not at all fair to them, much less the people they drive for, the ones that contract for them to haul, etc. These types of actions affect a lot more than the driver in that truck.

I am very much afraid that this type of MAD protesting is going to end up with the same results as the liberal protestors in Egypt face today. They got rid of one evil ONLY to face one that may be worse than the one they got rid of. As a matter of fact, those protestors who started out with such lofty ideas, may be face soon with a life and death situation themselves - and it is not looking good for them.

[-] 4 points by subversive1 (32) 3 years ago

Its impressive that OWS has the numbers to pull something like this off, BUT outside of that, its not actually hurting the 1% in any way. Sure they are starting to see just how pissed off everyone is, but they've known about that and expected it for a long time now, I assure you.

But do you know what they are REALLY AFRAID OF?????

The 99% can still VOTE!!!!!!! That's right, ultimately, in a democracy such as ours, we ALL GET TO VOTE!!

The problem is that up until recently not enough people cared to pay attention or vote on anything, and as a result crooks have mislead the masses and gained unbelievable power within our government.

Obama ran on the platform of cleaning up the corruption in the government, and WE VOTED HIM INTO OFFICE!!! That's a BIG DEAL!

Unfortunately, we foolishly believed that ONE MAN WAS GOING TO SOLVE ALL OF OUR PROBLEMS.

But he can't accomplish anything by himself. We put him in a very tough position by not electing capable people to Congress to support his attempt to clean up the government and Wall St.

To anyone that has lost faith in Obama over the past couple of years, UNDERSTAND THIS - He is a figurehead with extremely limited power. Without the support of Congress, he has basically no control over anything that's going on in America.

He has to tapdance around every issue just so that he can get re-elected. He's privy to information that we couldn't dream of, and he must act accordingly in order to keep his position and keep the country safe.

BUT, IF WE ELECT A HOUSE AND SENATE FULL OF TRUE AMERICAN LEADERS TO SUPPORT HIM, THEN CHANGE REALLY IS POSSIBLE!!!

So we need to start thinking farther ahead than just being disruptive to big business and standing around protesting. We have a great community going here full of smart people with new ideas about how to fix some of the problems facing our country. Let's identify them and get them elected so we can truly OCCUPY CONGRESS!!!!!

[-] 2 points by XenuLives (1645) from Charlotte, NC 3 years ago

I find it amusing that people think the President can magically fix all of the things that he says he will, just by being elected. The real power is in Congress, but political pundits would rather keep the populace ignorant about the congressmen and enraged at a central figure instead.

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

Yep!!

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[-] 4 points by thankyouows (5) 3 years ago

I just turned on CNN a half hour ago. Absolutely no coverage of the shutdowns. When the NYPD raided OWS, the same thing happened. I learned about the raid from the internet and turned on CNN that morning to learn more. I watched for forty minutes and saw the same loop of minor stories. I e-mailed CNN, and coverage on OWS literally appeared within 15 minutes.

[-] 2 points by subversive1 (32) 3 years ago

CNN is owned by the government/military so this is not surprising. The media is majorly biased and effectively controlled by the 1%, so what do you expect?

We have to continue spreading awareness online, because its the last refuge for free speech! And naturally they are trying to take that away as well - http://pol.moveon.org/nointernetcensorship/?rc=pac_nointernetcensorship_letter.fb.v1.g0

[-] 1 points by jdnreha (85) 3 years ago

Really... CNN is owned by the government/military??? It wouldn't sound that crazy if you just said government... but military?

CNN is a publicly traded company owned primarily by other companies and more by the "1%ers" and a little by the guy trying to make a buck.

If you really think its owned by the government/military, then pleas show some source of information. Other than that, your making up propaganda and devaluing the movement.

[-] 1 points by subversive1 (32) 3 years ago

Sorry if the specifics of what I said are worth mincing words over. I retract that part of my statement. The fact is that media in the US is extremely biased and forced to answer to biased owners who are with the 1%.

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[-] 1 points by friendlyopposition (574) 3 years ago

In reading the front page of this very website, I have found it to be less than objective. I'm sure that between the OWS website and CNN there lies some level of truth. It could just be that the shutdowns weren't as big a deal as they were portrayed on occupywallst.org.

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

Do you not see the hoards of people in the photos? I guess it was successful in some way.

[-] 1 points by friendlyopposition (574) 3 years ago

There were many people in the photos, I can't dispute that. Since I wasn't there (on either side) I can't really say objectively how successful or unsuccessful the event was. I was just presenting one possibility.

[-] 0 points by ronjj (-241) 3 years ago

I see hoards of people everywhere that I go today. Hoards at the mall, hoards at Christmas concerts, hoards at WalMart, hoards at the resturants in this town on Friday nights.

If getting a hoard together is what it is all about - great success with the port issue according to a few pictures.

PS - I for one did not see any mention of this action at any port, in any local paper, on any local or national news, etc. Perhaps because I do not watch MSNBC which would not have impressed me in any way. The only WAY that I knew what was going on, was what was posted and discussed on this very site.

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[-] 4 points by bigbangbilly (594) 3 years ago

Are we allowed to have makeshift shields?

[-] 2 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

That depends, are we allowed to have the second ammendment?

[-] 1 points by bigbangbilly (594) 3 years ago

What I meant was the ones that are similar to the ones police with riot gear however it made but with what ever we can find like paper.

[-] 1 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

presumably, although according to FoxNews (for what its worth).

In Portland, Ore., authorities shuttered two terminals after arresting two people who were carrying weapons and said they were heading to the protest.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/12/12/occupy-protesters-seek-to-shut-down-west-coast-ports/#ixzz1gMKmJlf8

Again from Fox News so take it with a grain of salt, but I'd assume paper shields are no different than signs and noone should be able to stop you from bringing them in

[-] 1 points by bigbangbilly (594) 3 years ago

Is any of this movement's adversaries using human shields?

[-] 1 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

police ave riot shields, if you consider them adverseries, which I don't really think is the case. I'd argue that Bloomberg has the entire police force as a human shield though.

[-] 4 points by TheMaster (63) 3 years ago

The Ghandi sh1t works.....man...

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[-] 3 points by richardkentgates (3269) 3 years ago

Oakland continues to be the strongest points of protest. Get all the pictures and interviews you can of those folks, they are the ones going in the history books when this is all said and done.

[-] 3 points by BlueRose (1437) 3 years ago

Love it.

[-] 2 points by coffee1918 (3) 3 years ago

awesome west coast occupy...behind you 100%

[-] 2 points by Mark01 (82) 3 years ago

ok so now the cops are there to stop workers from goin on strike?

[-] 2 points by owsphorever (9) 3 years ago

I keep reading from the anti-OWS people that nothing is free. Yet these are the same type people—along with most of the mega rich--, who has lived off the blood, sweat and tears of billions of people for thousands of years.

Now that most people in the world are able to stand up to at least try to protect their resources, they(the greedy) invent more and more deadly weapons so they continue to live off other people by destroying everything they build and throwing them back into division and weakness.

Every single thinking person in the world knows that Capitalism is a parasitic system that can only survive by endless robbery of others. People have been pointing out the fact for a hundred years. If people want to live under such a dog eat dog system they have every right to.

But what they don’t have the right to do, is force everybody else to live that way.

The greatest Thinker in the history of the world already gave us a system that we should live by—the only one that can care for each of us.

He called it his Kingdom.

Nobody would care if some people had a quadrillion dollars in their bank account if others on the earth weren’t literally starving to death.

As long as one person on earth is hungry, homeless, and naked, it’s simply unacceptable for one individual to be hoarding billions in wealth.

Ensure that everyone has the basic, then make all the money you want.

But money is not what the evil rich want, they want the poverty in the world because it gives them access to people’s bodies, minds and souls in a way they could never get if people didn’t have to sell themselves and their children to eat.

This is not about money and resources; it’s about certain people wanting to live like gods over the lives of other people. It’s about power and frankly—sheer evil.

It would not be a very hard thing at all to ensure that everybody has the basics. We have not only been told how it can be done 2000 years ago, we have been shown how it can be done in the last 80 years.

Communism never failed. It has proven itself to be a great success; technologically, morally, and spiritually, by not only being the first to send rockets to the moon, but by liberating the world.

But the need to ceaselessly defend itself against attack has made it astronomically hard to reach its full potential.

Why are the Capitalist always attacking? No one in the world today is attacking other countries and trying to keep other people from coursing their own futures.

The reason why the shrills and spin doctors are going to call the OWS movement Communist and get louder with it, the longer the movement lasts, is because they know that Communist is all the OWS movement can be if it wants to meet its stated goals.

You cannot have technological progress, full employment, housing and equality under any other system.

The war since the beginning of time has always been communism against and Elitism.

That’s why all the old world peoples and their ways/knowhow was destroyed.

There is nothing else.

The ironic thing is; the biggest Opposers to Communism are also the biggest communists.

I wonder where all these cops, military, and old age Pensioners, and other “Individualists” think the wealth that they get for the rest of their lives just for sitting on their assess from the day they left high school, comes from.

That's right—it comes from the community.

And that’s all Communism is—the collective wealth of the community taking care of its members

[-] 1 points by friendlyopposition (574) 3 years ago

Communism communism communism. Blah blah blah. I don't mind reading your drivel until you really say something stupid like "Cops and military sitting on their asses from the day they left high school." If you have issue with the way this country is run, fine - rant and rave all you want. March to the steps of congress and be heard. But you should count yourself fortunate that other people have stood up for your safety and your freedom since the day they left high school. Your issue isn't with them. The citizens of the US are not wired to be under communist rule, and I can't see a future when they ever will be. If I were you, I'd set some more reasonable goals if you plan on staying in the US.

[-] 2 points by owsphorever (9) 3 years ago

if you knew who you were talking to you'd know how stupid you come off, writing about somebody standing up for my safety and freedom. As I pointed out in my post, if you hate the idea of communism so much, stop taking from the community.

invest and when you retire, live for the next 40 years on your own dollar

[-] 2 points by friendlyopposition (574) 3 years ago

Please enlighten me - I can only assume you aren't a police officer or a military person. I'd love to hear about what you've done in your life that is so significant regarding the safety and freedom of others - without revealing any personal information of course.

I guess the options are "communism" and "no government employees."

Lets just assume that I'm wrong about you and you are some kind of rebel freedom fighting vigilante justice superhero - it doesn't change the fact that the blanket statement you made about police officers and military personnel is ridiculous.

That, and your recommendation to invest sounds suspiciously capitalistic...

[-] 1 points by owsphorever (9) 3 years ago

You got that right.

You're the one who insist on believing that the police and military is standing for somebody's safety and freedom.

Maybe yours, but not mine and certainly not those of the millions of innocent people they bomb in other countries ten thousand miles from home.

As for what I've done for the community--let's just say I spent over 25 years as a builder. You can touch, live, work, sleep, hold businessess and do real, concrete things in what I've contributed, and I've never lied on, bombed, murdered, humiliated, falsely imprisioned or robbed a single soul in my life.

As for your last sentence--again you may believe that Capitalism invented business, trade, investment and everything having to do with creating resources for the community.

But that's only because you're to nearsighted to see past your nose.

[-] 1 points by friendlyopposition (574) 3 years ago

A builder? A respectable profession, no doubt. But as far as putting yourself in danger for the sake of others - that's not really in your job description. That's fine. There is no dishonor in what you do. However, there are people in your town that leave their homes every night and go to work to protect you and your way of life. Like it or not, respect them or not - they do it. I'm sorry that you have had some bad experience with police in your life - but the fact of the matter is that they are willing to die for you. I have had 4 close friends die in the line of duty in the past 20 years. I know first hand what that sacrifice looks like. So for you to say something so stupid as they were "sitting on their asses since they left high school" is offensive and completely idiotic. Are police officers perfect? Of course not, but there are hundreds of thousands of police officers in the US and, with the exception of a few bad apples, they are good and honest people who are out there making a difference in peoples lives at great personal sacrifice.

As far as investing goes - I'm surprised you would allow me to profit off of my investments to such a degree that I could live off of those profits for 40 years. That doesn't sound very communal.

[-] -1 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

Your defense of Communism as a "success" is a little baffling. You can usually tell how successful a system is by the attempted ingress and egress into/away from a country. Last time I looked into my history books, people have always, ALWAYS risked life and limb to get the heck OUT of communist countries, and they risk life and limb to get INTO capitalist countries, yes, just like the good ole USA. Am I missing something here?

[-] 2 points by owsphorever (9) 3 years ago

What do you consider a succes--12 trillion dollar debt and a pathetic need to invent enemies so you can endlessly attack and destroy and rob?

Somebody that much in debt is not only a failure, his future great, great, great grandkids, are failures because of him.

As for that old canard about people leaving other Nations to go to Capitalist Nations--where have you been lately?

Everybody is going back home or trying to. Even people who were born in these Nations are scrambling to get out..

Nobody ever leaves their land of birth in the first place but the greedy.

That's why Capitalists Nation are going to rot--they get nothing from the people of the world but the hogs.

People chasing wealth.

Most people on earth are satisfied with enough.

[-] -1 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

Oddly enough, it sounds like you and I might agree on something--the debt is terrible. I'd recommend you write the democrats in congress and plead with them, beg them on your hands and knees if you have to, to at least consider the possibility of ever cutting, or maybe just reducing the growth of, any federal program whatsoever (except the military, of course, which they believe is altogether dispensable). Aside from that, you're pretty much wrong about everything else you've written.

[-] 2 points by SuzannahBeTroy (28) 3 years ago

Dear OWS: I have news but I want to wait before I post -- so it may be couple of days regarding Deutsche Bank’s abuse of OWS and the written word! Stay tuned!!!!!!!!

[-] 2 points by economicallydiscardedcitizen (761) 3 years ago

They're 'Being the Change!' For those who don't understand, what's happening is by shutting down the ports WE'RE SENDING THE MESSAGE THAT millions of goods produced by industry OVERSEAS that produces them which are owned by US companies needs to come back to the US to BRING BACK OUR JOBS! Thank you!

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[-] 2 points by Timmeh (39) 3 years ago

Could someone please explain to me why you are shutting down the ports? I would really appreciate it as no one has given me a straight answer.

[-] 2 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

"For those who don't understand, what's happening is by shutting down the ports WE'RE SENDING THE MESSAGE THAT millions of goods produced by industry OVERSEAS that produces them which are owned by US companies needs to come back to the US to BRING BACK OUR JOBS! Thank you!"

Posted by economicallydiscardedcitizen above your post. It's also about port workers being treated unfairly across the board (read the letter again).

[-] 2 points by Thisisthetime (200) from Kahlotus, WA 3 years ago

If you have to ask, I doubt that any answer that I will give you will satisfy you. First, of all, it is obvious to many of us that things are not right. Not just a little not right, not cry-baby not right, but, big-time not right. It is not earth-quake/tsunami not right, it is a much more subtle, turn the temperature up slowly, increase the work load slowly type not right. It is a both parents need to work and kids come home to an empty house full of angst not right. How about Massive Corporations, that get massive tax breaks(paid for by middle class workers taxes), Massive Corporations sending Massive Ships into U.S. PORTS carrying Massive amounts of Stuff from impoverished and polluted third world countries, Stuff that we don't Really Need, but, we buy it anyway.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

The real problem, that the occupiers are trying to deflect attention from, is that the government has a MAJOR SPENDING ADDICTION. We need to remove our congresspeoples' collective hands from the cookie jar--they are bankrupting the country and killing our future. Let's protest the big spenders in Washington--we don't want to become Greece.

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

Government spending did not cause the recession or the economic meltdown. It did not cause massive, sustained unemployment. It did not cause shipping jobs by the millions overseas to maximize profits. It did not destroy unions and workers rights. It did not invent credit default swaps, securitized toxic mortgages fraudulently sold as AAA paper to unsuspecting investors, It did not take 22 TRILLION dollars of uncapitalized risk in derivatives that crashed.

Get real. This is not Greece. The issues are different.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

You're right that government spending didn't cause the meltdown. That culprit would be government policy--literally forcing banks to make loans that they would never in a million years make if it weren't for the threat of removing their charters. Good loans make for good derivative mortgage products. Bad, forced loans make for dangerous financial products when bundled. Now, the main problem that we have is exactly the same as the situation in Greece. They're just further down the road, and some people would rather stick their heads in the sand than face reality. Our deficit is just about beyond repair and certainly (will be, so long as dems hold any sway). Another problem is, as always, that the government continues to suck the life out of business, and those of us who pay taxes are being stuck with an unsustainable debt service. It's going to end badly because of people who demonize business--the producers and the givers--and exalt the freeloaders and the takers.

[-] 2 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

"That culprit would be government policy--literally forcing banks to make loans that they would never in a million years make if it weren't for the threat of removing their charters."

That is a flat out LIE. Please quit spewing bullshit. Read the fucking bill that you and others love to berate as the cause of banks and lending institutions lying while screwing the average citizen over and making hoards of cash. You are SO WRONG.

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

Yeah, except you're wrong (and obviously naive). I have first hand knowledge of the way the bank I worked at had to hold its nose at the loan policy that it had no control over. The government called the shots when it came to making bad loans, and the bank had to suck it up and go along with the policy--the bank was not given the discretion to make its own loan decisions. Look, I wouldn't expect you to know anything about that--you wouldn't, unless, like me, you had first hand knowledge of the situation. My expection of you, kind madam, is that you will continue with your silly slogans and trite commentary on the state of affairs as you hear them reported on your version of "fair and balanced" TV news (I'm referring to MSNBC, of course).

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

You are absolutely misinformed. Government policies did NOT direct banks to make risky loans. The laws you are referring to were written during the Carter administration, and the loans most banks created, in particular the sub-prime ones, did not qualify under the provisions of those laws. Only about 6% of all sub-prime had any relationship to government policy, law or regulation.

http://rortybomb.wordpress.com/2011/11/01/bloombergs-awful-comment-what-can-we-say-for-certain-regarding-the-gses/

The problems with Greece have to do with the fact that the majority of people there pay no taxes, combined with an old guild system that discourages economic growth. It's troubles are unique to itself. They also, unlike us, do not have their own currency, so they can't make adjustments to the money supply and along with it, policy. Policy is imposed from without, by the German bankers mostly. It is not only an economic crisis, but a sovereignty one as well. They are unable to initiate policies of job growth that could at least partly get them out their mess, along with an inability to control monetary policy. Nor has the nation come up with a way to collect taxes.

http://streetlightblog.blogspot.com/2011/09/what-really-caused-eurozone-crisis-part.html

The US has nothing in common with that reality.

Our deficit, while large (and the numbers look huge if only viewed without context) is not as large as it has been in the past as a percent of GDP. In fact, it has been much higher in those terms, notably in the period just after WWII. Not only did it not hurt the economy, but the years in which it occurred were the beginning of the greatest, longest, and most sustained economic expansion in US history, a period that effectively created the middle class.

Long term debt is a crisis manufactured exclusively by right-wing propagandists as a political weapon used against the current administration. It is entirely cynical, a ploy to enforce neo-conservative, libertarian "Starve the Beast" ideology begun by Reagan, and an attempt to paint Obama falsely as a tax and spend liberal.

Although the long term debt is a concern, the real issues are employment and revenue generation. Of the two, employment creates the revenue. Austerity in a time of economic and employment contraction only serves to make the debt larger. http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/07/08/the-cost-of-austerity/?gwh=1B90B98FFD00E0F8B6EC2A3D1BF2EA26 http://www.forbes.com/sites/leonardburman/2011/06/24/should-we-run-deficits-forever/ (And the CBO agrees.) What's clearly needed (and every non-partisan economists agrees, as do many corporations) that a much greater investment by government in job creation is needed in the short term, much as it was during the Great Depression. That plus a reintroduction of a steeply progressive income tax, and genuinely universal health care, in addition to ending two costly wars, will reduce the long term debt to at least manageable, sustainable levels, if not eliminate the bulk of it entirely.

This is not left-wing talk: as I said, virtually all non-aligned economists and business leaders say the same thing.

[-] 1 points by Jflynn64 (337) 3 years ago

Unfortunately not as many economists agree with your ideas as you are making out. The economics department at the University of Chicago has won more Noble prizes than any other institution and they don't agree with your thinking.

It is difficult to know what the multiplier effect is on government spending. Some recent studies actually have put it as negative.

If you believe government is a better allocator of goods than the people then why not let them make all of the decisions. Lets put taxes at 100%. Why wouldn't this work?

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

You hyperbole does not lend credibility to your argument.

It is not surprising the the Chicago school is, in part, in disagreement with the strategy. They can hardly be described as non-partisan. They are, and have been since the days of Milton Friedman, overtly Libertarian, ultra-conservative, and aligned with the Republican Party. Nobel prizes notwithstanding the bulk of their Hayek-inspired theories have been discredited. (The Nobel economics committee was headed for years by a right-wing libertarian, and the prizes reflect that fact more than any proven merit of economic theory)

The application of Keynsian economics, not neo-classical economics, is what got this country out the Great Depression. The "salt water" school has proven itself in the real world. The "fresh water" one has been proven woefully wrong.

[-] 1 points by Jflynn64 (337) 3 years ago

Just because you say that supply economics is discredited doesn't make it try. As someone who live through the 70, I can tell you that your brand of price controls, easy money and government spending did not work and it was only the implementation of sound money and lower taxes and regulation that got the economy growing in the 80s.

I again ask you, if the goverment allocates assets better than the public why not tax at 100%. We could all go work for Solyndra.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

How I LOVE the Solyndra reference, which represents about 1.3% percent of government investment in start-ups. 98% of the government's similar investments were overwhelmingly successful, yet Solyndra, an anomaly (for various reasons, including Chinese unfair trading practices) is the poster boy for Government investment. that better than 98% success rate is FAR higher than that of private investment firms. As of Sept. 12, the DOE loan programs office closed or issued conditional commitments of $37.8 billion to projects around the country. The $535 million loan is only 1.3 percent of DOE's loan portfolio. To date, Solyndra is the ONLY loan that's known to be troubled.

The end of the 70's marked the beginning of the stagnation of wages for the middle class that resulted from the very policies you hold in high regard.. Hardly a creditable argument for economic expansion.

There were real gains,but it mostly went to one sector:

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/11/08/boom-for-whom/

The real economic expansion in this country - one that benefitted everyone - occurred between 1945 and 1979, a period of high taxes on the wealthy, and stronger regulation of banks and industry, along with a vibrant labor union sector. Most of that time the top marginal rate was in excess of 70%.

In terms of the Chicago School, one need only to look at the success of Keynsian economics as it was applies during the Great Depression, to see that it worked. Neo-classicism nearly derailed the economic rescue when austerity measures were applied in 1937.

[-] 1 points by Jflynn64 (337) 3 years ago

The great depression lasted much longer than it should of so why didn't it work immediately when government spending increased?

Kennedy reduced the highest marginal tax rate in 1962 which boosted GDP growth. GDP waned through much of the '70 while unemployment increased as well as inflation.

So if the government is so good at investing why don't we give them all of their money? How come it isn't working now?

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

What makes you think it isn't working now?

The first stimulus package saved GM and most of its employees, and kept up to 4 million teachers on the job.

Economists advised then that the stimulus package should have been at least twice the size it was to actually start creating jobs. Little has been done since that first stimulus. It is currently not working because it currently doesn't exist.

GDP growth did not wane much through the 1960's. However much it slowed down was largely due to the Vietnam war, which was a huge drag on the economy. The 1970's were in large part hobbled by the bills from that war. The Arab oil embargo didn't help a whole lot, either. (Reagan intentionally created the deep recession and high unemployment that occurred during his administration in an effort to reduce inflation. He choke off the money supply, exactly what the right-wing is pushing for now. Want to guess what the result would be if they are successful?) Compared to post-1979, however, real earnings by ordinary people grew at an amazing pace, something that can't be said about after 1979.

What's more GDP, while one measure of economic growth, is not a measure of economic health or equity. Where the benefits of that growth are distributed is. When all the gains go to the top 10%, and none go to the median, there is something flawed in the system.

Government has indeed been very good at investing. The very internet we are communicating on was funded by it. All the roads we travel on were paved by it. It was responsible for rural electrification and the interstate highway system. It created the EKG. It got us to the moon.

Private industry is very good at creating consumer products: things to sell. Public investment if far better, however, at little things like national infrastructure and has a laudable record in medicine, science, and r&d in new industries. Both make some good, and some bad investments, Both have a place in the expansion of the economy. That's why your "give all your money to the government" argument is sheer hyperbole.

As to why a recovery didn't happen right away during the Great depression, Keynsian economics weren't applied right away. There was a good deal of experimenting that FDR engaged in. Some things simply didn't have much effect. But also keep in mind the scale of that tragedy. Over 25% of the entire country was out of work. There were no safety net programs like unemployment and disability and social security and food stamps the blunt the effects. Legislation had to be passed, and a hostile Supreme court had to be coaxed. All these things took time. It was not Keynsian economics that kept the recovery slow, but the lack of institutions and programs to implement it quickly. Despite this, the depression was largely over by 1936-7, a scant 3 or four years after taking office. How is that slow? A second recession occurred when Keynsian economics was abandoned in favor of austerity in 1937-8, implemented because FDR capitulated to the deficit hawks of his time.

[-] 0 points by Jflynn64 (337) 3 years ago

So if government is so good at investing why not let them do it? Why not let them redistribute wealth as well. So are you saying that spending on the Vietnam War was inefficient.

What is your plan for this investment?

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

I am replying to your statement below since I was unable to respond directly due to no reply button.

Yes inflation was high in the late seventies. Ever hear of the Vietnam War and the Arab Oil Embargo? DIdn't we just go over this? (What is your memory lapse due to: early onset Alzheimer's, or just ideology?) Reagan intentionally created the deep recession and high unemployment to reign in that inflation. I still remember him declaring that unemployment should never go below 6 -6.5% at a time when unemployment was finally coming down from its over 10% high that he caused.. Although he succeeded in bringing inflation under control, he also deflated wages, so the only gains were for the wealthy.

Regardless of your straw man, the longest, largest, most sustained period of economic growth in history was from 1945 to 1979. It corresponded with robust, generous government investment, expanded social programs, and a steeply progressive income tax on the wealthy, as well as high heredity taxes and higher taxes on capitol gains.

The wealthy still had their yachts, but everybody else's boats rose with the tide as well.

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

Government has been redistributing wealth. Since 1979, it has taken from the poor and middle class and redistributed it to the wealthy. It has been a very well-documented reverse Robin Hood.

Up until then it modestly redistributed money from the top down, and the result was a booming , expanding economy for everyone, including the wealthy.

[-] -1 points by Jflynn64 (337) 3 years ago

Yeah, those seventies were good, what was that unemployment rate and what was the inflation rate?

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

Wow.... did you digest anything from what epa1nter has said at all? You keep asking the same question over and over, even after you've been given a bunch of info.... "So if government is so good at investing why not let them do it? Why not let them redistribute wealth as well."

No wonder we have trouble moving forward with anything. Too many people have blinders on and refuse to take them off.... in fear of what someone else might take from them.

[-] 2 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

@Jflynn64 (couldn't reply to your response directly).... I'd say that epa1nter has addressed your questions and comments VERY directly. Your desire to ignore those comments doesn't constitute them not being answered.

epa1nter has given you numbers in terms of a very progressive tax system.... numbers that have worked very well in the past (after the Great Depression and before 1980).

Regulations of the finance sector are what kept this country from collapsing into more depressions after the Great Depression, and de-regulating those regulations is EXACTLY what lead to the current recession via the financial meltdown of 2008. It seems to me you need to read up on this to become educated about it.... because you clearly have very little knowledge of it. You just keep ranting about governmental regulations and a progressive tax system and about government controlling everything.

Using China's government as an example is weak.

[-] -1 points by Jflynn64 (337) 3 years ago

It's difficult to have an actual economic debate on this site as some do not want to answer the questions or put out a proposal. So what should the tax policy be and why and be specific as to your numbers.

What I'm hearing is that we should have a steeply progressive tax system with goverment control over all investment decisions a la GM? Is that what you want?

How come this system didn't work in 1962 when Kennedy lowered taxes. What happened in the 70's. Why did China move away from strict government control, they couldn't produce enough food for their people.

How do I get one of these positions in your economy because I would like to go on strike.

[-] -1 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

Because of your Herculean efforts to respond to my post, you deserve a counter-response, but mine will be much shorter (with your indulgence): First, CRA started with Carter, and Clinton kicked it into major high gear--forcing, yes forcing--millions of bad loans to be made. These loans (which were of course doomed from the beginning) were sold into the secondary market, bundled with otherwise performing loans, and securitized. Those forced bad loans destoyed the value of the bundles and the securities tanked.

With Greece, everyone was on the public dole, and nobody was producing anything in the private sector. But the end game is the same--it led to an unsustainable debt. That's where we're headed if these dems and liberal republicans don't start getting very, very serious about reducing our spending. Our debt crisis is potentially much worse than theirs, because of the reliance of all world markets on the dollar.

Third and finally, the business community understands what you're not hearing--that is that companies will not be doing much by way of capital investment or hiring until there's some clear understand of just how bad the administration is going to make things for them. It's the "fear of the unknown" that is causing companies to freeze most of their decision-making. There's a wild-card in the white house that sucks up contributions from wall street like a thirsty horse, yet his words and his policies are clearly anti-business. Companies can't predict what the future holds for them, so they're not doing anything. That'll change quickly if we get a pro-business president in place, and businesses will go back to doing what they do best again and free up some of the cash they're stashing.

[-] 2 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

Again, you are not getting good information. The CRA was responsible for, at most, about 6% of the bad mortgages. Here is one link that breaks it down (and there are several other, more technical links the article points to that bear reviewing).

http://rortybomb.wordpress.com/2011/11/01/bloombergs-awful-comment-what-can-we-say-for-certain-regarding-the-gses/

The myth that government regulations or laws led to the recession have been thoroughly debunk several times now.

Second, Greece's problems are very much as you describe, and worse. Nobody was paying taxes there so there is no revenue for the government to pay for the social programs. Production was virtually crippled by a guild system that legally enshrined cronyism. Their GDP to debt ratio is appalling. But that's not the case in the USA. Nor is high debt, by itself, an issue Just look at countries like Sweden, whose debt is large AND sustainable, and whose social programs have few rivals. Their economy is faring far better than most, and certainly better than our.

The business community is not holding off on new investment because of regulatory uncertainty, but simple lack of demand. We are in a liquidity trap that is self-reinforcing, and in real danger of deflation. I repeat, all NON ALIGNED (that excludes the Chicago School) economists, The GAO, the CBO, and and many business leaders - including the banks - have categorically stated that what is needed now is large-scale, short term stimulus investment in job creation, not austerity measures. They agree that the long term debt will be made worse by austerity measures because those measures will likely make unemployment, hence revenue shortfall, significantly worse. This is not the left wing saying this, but the banks and the business community.

I understand your concern. If I was operating from the kind of information you are, I would share it. But the information itself is incorrect, so your conclusions, worrisome are they are, are off target.

I really hope you go to the link I provided, and spend some time there. I believe, or at least hope, that with the new, more accurate information available to you, you will understand that your position (born of a genuine concern for our country) has been misguided by those that have controlled the narrative up until now.

(As to Obama being anti-business, the left has disavowed him for precisely the opposite reason. All of his economic advisors come from big banks and Wall Street, and he has capitulated on most of his progressive campaign promises in favor of doing the least to harm those banks and Wall Street. Even his health care bill was far to the right of Nixon's proposals over 30 years ago, rejected as too right wing business friendly at the time.)

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

You win the battle of typing the most words, but you're still wrong. Unless things change radically, we're in a heap of trouble. The increasing debt service is out of control and will very soon reach an unsustainable level. You are correct that the ratio, relative to GDP, was worse for a very limited time during the war. But we won't have the same opportunity for a post-war "sigh of relief" that the economy had back then. Our debt service is growing by magnitudes that were unimaginable back then, and without any prospect (other than following the lead of leaders such as Paul Ryan) of bringing things under control. Good discussion epa1nter. Your tone is professional, and you wear a thinking cap.

[-] 1 points by epa1nter (4650) from Rutherford, NJ 3 years ago

THank you. I don't think disagreement needs to be rancorous. Passionate sometimes, yes. I also appreciated your tone.

I do think we may be looking at different data, certainly different analysis. And I don't think I could possibly disagree with you more about the Ryan plan. The CBO itself has said that his plan would actually create a greater debt than we have now. Nor do I believe that his proposals, which would be devastating to those who have the least, but rewarding to those who have the most, could be characterized as anything other than inhuman.

Still, I don't believe either of us are likely to convince the other. But I nevertheless enjoyed our mutual personal respect.

[-] 1 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

Protesters have cited a longstanding dispute between longshoremen at the Port of Longview in Washington and grain exporter EGT as a key reason for the blockades. Shutdown supporters say they're not asking longshoremen to organize a work stoppage in violation of their contract but simply asking them to exercise their free speech rights and stay off the job, in keeping with the union's historic tradition of activism.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/12/12/occupy-protesters-seek-to-shut-down-west-coast-ports/#ixzz1gMIPGySy

[-] 2 points by Zendude (75) from New York, NY 3 years ago

Well, I was almost going to reply to this, but then I saw your handle...

All for one, once and for all!

[-] 1 points by kcnaz (1) from Sahuarita, AZ 3 years ago

Occupy your financial future, “BUY AMERICAN”. If the 99% could organize around this motto by election time next year we would have sent a great message with one postage stamp to the 1%.

[-] 1 points by TaylorBenitez (10) 3 years ago

rule 1: everyone has a voice! -do not look down upon or attack someone for speaking their mind.

rule 2: if a fellow protester is being arrested for no crime, everyone within the area needs to protect him or her from being arrested. -this includes making a wall of bodies around the victim, pushing cops, and even attacking cops.

-while yes, we are peaceful, no one should be silenced by a cop or oppressed. with our government turning against us, we must rise and fight.

rule 3: always help a fellow protester out! -if they are hungry, tired, sick, or injured, make sure to help them or have someone else help them.

those are rules that should be agreed on unanimously, but add your own rules to complete the list of universal rules.

[-] 1 points by GeorgeVreelandHill (7) 3 years ago

Occupy Wall Street needs to shut its stupid mouth. How dare they count every person in the ninety-nine percent they talk about as in with them. They do not have a right to speak for me. I like the rich. Many of them started with nothing or almost nothing. Steve Jobs and countless others became VERY rich after being very poor. They did not complain. They had ideas and went with them. The top one percent creates jobs. Our companies, stores, firms and on and on that employ millions were not started by poor people. They were started by the wealthy. Now, OWS states that the rich are our enemy. Great, go against those who create so much. Occupy Wall Street has got to be the most stupid bunch of idiots to ever band together. They have no real clue as to what they are doing. In Los Angeles, they accomplished nothing and left a mess that cost the city a lot of money. In Seattle, OWS blocked docks and tried to prevent people from going to work. Yet, they claim they want people to go to work. The entire Occupy movement is a joke. They talk for the entire ninety-nine percent, but of those ninety-nine percent of the people, about ninety percent are working. I live in Beverly Hills and I'm doing fine. I don't need Occupy Wall Street to tell me what to do.

George Vreeland Hill

[-] 1 points by conley89 (2) 3 years ago

I'm an international trade major and international trade/outsourcing is both good and bad. It is good because it makes the world interdependent which causes less war. Note that the western world doesn't seem to wage war against each other since they began international trade. Also, a lot of the items we buy through international trade we do not have enough resources/labor to make here. Not to mention, we would see ourselves as above a lot of the jobs it would provide. The problem with international trade and outsourcing of jobs is that when things are locally made, the money earned from buying the product circulates through our economy many more times than money from buying products made in other countries. Another problem is that we can't regulate how these countries treat their workers and sometimes it is very badly. Also, businesses like to buy foriegn made goods and outsource jobs because it is cheaper. This means that people work in crappy conditions and get paid near nothing so that we can buy cheaper goods. Although we pay far too little for this labor, it is important not to pay based on our pay scale because this could cause factory workers to earn more than doctors. This would cause people to choose working in a factor rather than other important jobs. Outsourcing allows companies to move their production to countries with less environmental and labor restrictions (which is also bad). To learn more about the really awful aspects of international trade/outsourcing look up World System's theory.

[-] 1 points by conley89 (2) 3 years ago

I'm an international trade major and international trade/outsourcing is both good and bad. It is good because it makes the world interdependent which causes less war. Note that the western world doesn't seem to wage war against each other since they began international trade. Also, a lot of the items we buy through international trade we do not have enough resources/labor to make here. Not to mention, we would see ourselves as above a lot of the jobs it would provide. The problem with international trade and outsourcing of jobs is that when things are locally made, the money earned from buying the product circulates through our economy many more times than money from buying products made in other countries. Another problem is that we can't regulate how these countries treat their workers and sometimes it is very badly. Also, businesses like to buy foriegn made goods and outsource jobs because it is cheaper. This means that people work in crappy conditions and get paid near nothing so that we can buy cheaper goods. Although we pay far too little for this labor, it is important not to pay based on our pay scale because this could cause factory workers to earn more than doctors. This would cause people to choose working in a factor rather than other important jobs. Outsourcing allows companies to move their production to countries with less environmental and labor restrictions (which is also bad). To learn more about the really awful aspects of international trade/outsourcing look up World System's theory.

[-] 1 points by harbek2000 (30) 3 years ago

It's important to remember the soldiers that have died in vain in other conflicts who had not knkown this such injustice existed in this country.

These soldiers are all with you now. The numbers forced into battle to die - for those of higher offices to attempt to rule the masses. You also stand for injustice of soldiers who fight and die to protect a freedom we did not know had been taken from all of us.

Solidarity and total support - OWS can make things change.

[-] 1 points by tellmewhy (4) 3 years ago

My take on all this? Those involved in all of the so-called "occupy" movements are merely useful idiots and pawns in the classic struggle between the forces of destructive anarchy they have lent their empty minds and shrill voices to and the established order of society.

Now, I'm not saying our American society and economy is perfect, but it is not anything like the "occupy" movement portrays it. I can understand the frustration and even some of the points some try to make, but in the main, folks that are in this "occupy" movement are simply whacked in my opinion. Good Lord! Just listen to them. No sense or understanding of how the economy really works. Worse, they villianize those they don't even know personally. This is simply a non-starter for me and I suspect the vast, vast majority of Americans.

I'd be happy to entertain any and all arguments from those who believe they can make a decent argument for any of the beliefs, tactics, etc. of the "occupy" movement. Try to breathe (or count to ten) first...

[-] 1 points by billbux (35) 3 years ago

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[-] 1 points by peterparks (1) 3 years ago

Your note about Portland is incorrect: "Mounted police, tear gas, pepper spray, and flash grenades used to clear protesters from Terminal 18." There is no Terminal 18 in Portland. Maybe you mean Seattle. Get it right. This is a serious allegation.

[-] 1 points by ubercaput (175) from New York City, NY 3 years ago

How does it affect Goldman Sachs?

[-] 1 points by Ythill (1) 3 years ago

I think someone posted Portland's 6:20pm update into the wrong city. No mounted police, tear gas, pepper spray, or flash grenades. As far as I know, no Terminal 18.

Police were extremely peaceful and accommodating. Used mic check to communicate on one occasion. They messed with a belligerent by-passer who drove aggressively through the crowd while exiting the port, but didn't seem to care that we were there. Port successfully closed, even the night shift.

Portland will be occupying EGT and the WTC in solidarity with those cities closing their ports a second day in response to police violence, but we will be leaving all port terminals open.

[-] 1 points by coffee1918 (3) 3 years ago

don't like seeing people hiding behind anonymous mask in the crowd :(

[-] 1 points by dilligentraisen12 (3) 3 years ago

I am impressed by the power of many people's answering a call to rise up and stand for something that is beyond and greater than themselves. It was once said, "If you don't stand for something you will fall for anything."

To me those who protest are the ones who are standing for something. The rest of us who sit back and watch the TV or listen to the radio are the ones "falling for anything."

[-] 1 points by dilligentraisen12 (3) 3 years ago

It's about showing who has the power. The people of the United States of America have the power. The people who took it upon themselves to lay the foundation for this nation and all the powers and protections of our Constitution have the power. Do not read their propaganda newspapers or watch their television shows. The entire mainstream media, cable TV, all newspapers are propaganda. The truth is that the elites of this nation are clueless and the power they hold is FICKLE. They will bring about their own demise. The rest of us just need to stay strong and stay peaceful and stay true. God willing, the Universe will provide.

Don't you Occupiers realize you have already won the fight? Not because of any strategic superiority, but because you have been chosen in this life to answer a call that comes from the depths of the hearts of man. To once and for all banish the tyranny and delusion that is perpetuated by all money games. Take pity on those who live to game the system for themselves. They will live their lives clinging to what was never meant to be. They will cling to their delusions and their dogmas. They will never know the joy of selflessness. What a shitty way to live no? They will cling to a sinking ship while even the rats know better to swim for land. Protesters, do not be like those monkeys who can not let go of the apple, to free their arms from the cage. Know with confidence that you have already won. Stay strong and be well. May the deepest depths of your hearts stay strong and grounded to this Earth who loves you. Godspeed and peace.

[-] 1 points by blackbloc (-19) 3 years ago

the lack of coverage today on msnbc and even so far on current has been not existent and is quite frankly shocking

[-] 1 points by ChristopherABrownART5 (46) from Santa Barbara, CA 3 years ago

--Article 5 convention NOW! If protesters were protecting the constitution overtly, rather than just using constitutional rights, to effect unconstitutional corporate commodity control, defending the constitution SPECIFICALLY from usurpation such as congress has conducted with SOPA and indefinite detention; it would a different story on the street with blockading.

[-] 1 points by kris1 (2) 3 years ago

Keep it up everyone! You're doing an amazing job!

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[-] 0 points by Jumphrey (106) 3 years ago

Really? Think you can pull this lie with AFSCME and SEIU leading the charge?

We're talking millions of union workers protesting here.. Your sentiment fails.

[-] 1 points by adrianb (6) from Midwest City, OK 3 years ago

i really want to hear whats going on but with both feeds i cant hear anything from either of them....:(

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[-] 1 points by garybob (3) 3 years ago

Goldman Sachs is an evil company!!!

[-] 0 points by ombp2 (12) 3 years ago

Evil? Oh please. In what sense is it evil? The company employs a LOT of people. Unless you want more unemployed folks, you really ought to whistle a different tune--maybe even try supporting these "evil" companies and the people who work there. How can you wish harm on those workers? Shame on you!

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[-] 1 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

If you want an indepth explanation of why OWS has blockaded the ports, bay of rage has one.

http://www.bayofrage.com/from-the-bay/blockading-the-port-is-only-the-first-of-many-last-resorts/

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[-] 1 points by didreyfus (3) 3 years ago

good commentary on the intimidation...your questions are very well posed..

[-] 0 points by billbux (35) 3 years ago

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[-] 0 points by 4closed (2) 3 years ago

I don't understand what blocking truckers from doing their job is going to do for the cause. To my knowledge, these guys aren't part of the problem. They're barely getting by as it is.. And the protests in their activities seems like it's hurting the people that are already hurting in this economy.
I support the protests in Wall St and in Washington and in the banks and government offices but not where regular folks are doing what it seems they should be doing.

[-] 0 points by guero1nd (11) 3 years ago

"I'm just barely getting on my feet again after two years, and now I gotta go a day without pay while somebody else has something to say that I'm not really sure is relevant to the cause," trucker Chuck Baca told CNN affiliate KGO.

Port officials say shutting down their facilities will only cost workers and their communities wages and tax revenue.

"Protesters wanted to send a message to the 1% but they are impacting the 99%," said Portland port spokesman Josh Thomas. The stoppage is resulting in "lost shifts, lost wages and delays," he said.

Port of San Diego board chairman Scott Peters issued an open letter to the community on Sunday asking that protesters not disrupt work.

"The Port of San Diego is made up of working people with families who serve the public each day by helping to bring in goods that are important to the people of the San Diego region," Peters wrote.

"They are the 99 percent, the gardeners, the maintenance workers, the dock workers, the Harbor Police officers, the office workers, the environmental workers -- all working to improve the quality of life in San Diego Bay and on its surrounding lands," he said. "It is these people who would be hurt by a blockade of our Port."

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[-] 0 points by alforall (0) 3 years ago

I hear the Longshoreman oppose the Occupy movement / our shut down of the ports. Are they with us or against us? I've also heard they make 6 figures for working a day or two a week - part of the 99% or the 1% - what do you guys think?

[-] 3 points by hmmm (52) 3 years ago

Dude, don't make this about who makes more money than you. That just looks greedy. The main point of the 1%, IMHO, is that a lot of them grow their money through activities that are destructive to the rest of us. Also, capital gains (which involve no labour) are taxed at a lower rate than the taxes we pay on money made through our labour.

Longshoremen may make a lot, i don't know, but it's through labour.

[-] 2 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

a more valid arggument would be to point out the difference between the ILWU union bosses who do oppose the port shut down in comparison to the Longshoreman who, from what I have read generally don't. 6 figures is not the 1% and there are very few people who would argue that the longshoreman aren't a part of the 99%

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[-] 0 points by jjoplin (25) 3 years ago

I do not understand how shutting down the ports, the very OPPOSITE or Wall Street and/or Washington, does the 99% any good. Why don't you just go to Hollywood and try to get famous that way. At least that way the REAL 99% don't have to keep getting hurt by your selfish, activist but not constructive actions. Seriously. Grow up and respect that you live in a Democracy and USE IT AS IT WAS INTENDED. Throw the politicians out not the dockworkers and truckdrivers and small business owners. Please.

[-] 4 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

I've read that the port of Oakland workers aren't allowed to strike themselves, but they are allowed to refuse to cross a picket line. This is a picket line and therefore a chance for the port workers to strike. Luddites knocked out the mechanical looms they worked with. They were accused of breakin things which would help the society to create more clothing and overall benefit society. The problem is those looms also led to lower wages for workers along with increased profits for the owners of the looms. The workers would put in just as many hours and get less of the profit.

It's a similar argument here. Although everyone needs the goods from the port, the way that the income from those goods is split is grossly unfair and this is an attempt to make that the issue

[-] -1 points by zucnei (103) 3 years ago

You've read or you know? I would hope someone figured it out before this action.

Its their union jobs. I would at least hope that OWS consulted with them and got a sense of if they wanted to strike. I would be angry if someone came to my workplace - shut it down and told me its for my own good. Its the right of the union workers to decide for themselves. Anything else is undemocratic and I hope that OWS, whose language has emphasized democratic processes, respected the union here.

[-] 2 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

It looks from this article as if the union itself has come out against the shutdown and they have not been in contact with them. Although it seems that the rank and file union members tend to disagree with the union leadership.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/dec/10/occupy-shutdown-west-coast-ports

[-] 0 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

I don't know I have just read and I would also love to hear from someone with more information on the topic. I totally understand your complaints too. Of course if the union workers aren't allowed to strike than it is already undemocratic. I don't know whether, or how much unions were consulted with, but, from what I have read, I know that the unions have been in conflict with ETG recently. It's not unlikely that they would have been interested in a strike, although I definitely agree that I hope someone checked with the union and ot some idea of how they felt about it before jumping in.

[-] 0 points by zucnei (103) 3 years ago

The info I've seen from the union itself seemed unclear. I agree with what you've said generally.

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[-] 0 points by didreyfus (3) 3 years ago

woohoo the CIRCLE

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[-] -1 points by armchairecon1 (169) 3 years ago

Soo.. todays action closed a couple of berths at each of the ports for a couple of hours.

basically wasting a day for the independent truckers who had to sit there waiting for you guys to leave.. at the risk of them missing truck/mortgage payments.

good job occupy!

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[-] 1 points by blackbloc (-19) 3 years ago

oh no your stupid gifts we are trying to change the world and you are worried about consumerism laughable

[-] -2 points by blackbloc (-19) 3 years ago

for all those who question shutting down the ports. they are the life blood to the economy that feeds the vampire squid. yes individuals may lose a days pay but this revolution is not with out sacrifice ask george washington if there can be a revolution with out inconvenience or sacrifice. but if our little revolution that could works they won't have to worry about losing that days pay any more.

[-] 2 points by mountaineer (16) 3 years ago

really, I have to sacrifice? so what is your goal of this new revolution? so we are supposed to be colateral damage for your ideology? so you tell us that know one else should tell us what to do and rebel against the machine, but yet you sit there and tell me that i have to sacrifice.....while the soldiers were in the field fighting to keep your right to protest, did you sacrifice anything for them? they are colateral damage for your rights, are they not?

[-] -1 points by blackbloc (-19) 3 years ago

yes you in fact have to sacrifice i know it runs counter to what your greedy little mind says (and trust me i know what it says). what are the goals of this revolution that is a joke right? open your eyes look around what is not wrong with this world we live in is a better question and i never said don't listen to those that are more knowledgeable or wise only a fool would say that. and actually i personally helped several families by simply donating my time to help them with watching kids and when others were overseas fighting for tools like you to be free. did you do anything ? and actually learn how to spell collateral. my dad is a recently retired chief from the air national guard newburg ny loser.

[-] 2 points by mountaineer (16) 3 years ago

@blackbloc....one, speaking for myself and I am sure other military members, we all appreciate you giving time to families, two, thanks for the correction on the spelling, now down to the comment. sacrifice? tool? loser? let me tell you something little man, don't talk to me about sacrifice. I spent nearly 5 years of my life in Iraq with 6 tours of duty there and I am a proud retired United States Marine after 20 years of ACTIVE DUTY service. I am also proud of the things that I accomplished while in Iraq, even though you have no idea on the things that we gave those people. those 6 tours don't also include the other deployments, time in field and other things that I willfully sacrificed, not only my time and but my family's time, to ensure you could go on here and question my sacrifice and call me a loser, plus a tool. I spent 20 years of my life willingly to make sure that the people of this country, whether 1% or 99% had the right to live, work, protest, earn a pay check, worship freely how they please and be damned sure the constitution of this great nation is upheld, I did that proudly and without reservation. In the mean time I had to endure morons who blast the military, protest me, call me names of all sorts, and want their absolute freedom but have no respect for how that freedom was gained for them. tool? loser? what did I sacrifice? a lot pal, and so did my family member who is buried in Arlington Cemetery and all my other family who served in the military, worked in coal mines, steel mills, and those that are small business owners. Don’t push your ideology on me. I enjoy engaging in conversation with others who I may disagree with because I may learn something, but I am not going to learn something from someone that has no respect for others and is so angry that only name calling can come out of their mouths. Obviously no respect for others and their own beliefs, for you, if people do not agree with you, you are like the rest of them, hateful, with useless things coming out of your filthy pie hole. You said your father recently retired from the ANG (which by the way I have all the respect in the world for your father, from one fellow service member to another, you at the moment, not so much respect for you because you don't show any to anyone else). Are you in college or right out of college? If so, what did you learn in college? Did your professors get you to believe all the things that you believe right now and what you are so extremely angry about? You know if engage in conversation respectfully with someone, you may get me to change my mind on somethings, but right off the bat, that is obviously not your goal.

There are so many things that I have agreed with from OWS, I do believe in getting money out of politics because it has hurt this country immeasurably. I don’t believe a corporation is a person, and I think that it should be illegal for politicians to use money from unions, business or other such entities to promote and run their election campaigns, use your own money. We should buy only American made products, giving and supporting to local family owned businesses, getting business out of my religious holiday of CHRISTMAS and so on. Politics is now about the next election and how do they get elected. The gov’t is not doing anything now but posturing for the next election, speaking out of both sides of their mouths. But what I don’t agree with is YOU telling others and their families that they have to sacrifice for your ideology. Prove to me from your utopian beliefs that those workers and their families will better off in the future. I am successful now, definitely not a 1% by any means, but I worked my ass off to get what I have, although not effected by port shutdowns, for a lot of those guys I would be pretty pissed off too. I do what I can to help the homeless and work in food shelters and I know there is more that I should do and can do. My wife and daughter spent their time in NYC working with the homeless and other missionaries. I have been fortunate enough that God has given me good things in life that I can hopefully share with others.
I WILL NOT nor WILL I subject myself to being a communist or socialist like some on here believe is the only way to survive. I WILL NOT follow anarchist views. And no I do not believe, like I have actually read on here in the past, that a janitor should be paid the same as a doctor. Nor do I believe the gov’t should bail out those that are so far under or in foreclosure of their homes because of their own inability to use common sense and get themselves into a bad situation from the get go knowing full well what they can and can't afford. DON'T BUY A $350,000 HOUSE IF YOU ARE ONLY GETTING PAID $25,000 A YEAR!!!! There are many, many situations where some are just a product of unfortunate circumstances and I truly sympathize with them, and do pray that their lives can be fixed (i.e. at one time in my wife's life she lost a her job right after she had a child, she did go on welfare for two months and did everything that she could to find another job, used the resources that the gov't provided her, the training they provided and guess what, she did find another job and has never looked back). BUT, don’t tell me to feel sorry for some like two of my neighbors, WHO KNEW, let me say that again WHO KNEW they could not afford the house they bought and just walked away and let the bank take the house back, how do you think that made it on the rest of us? It dropped all of our property values. Better yet, I have a family member, absolutely true story, who refuses to work because she knows she makes more money on welfare, and fills out her required job applications and resumes in crayon and turns them into business but tells the unemployment office she cannot find a job. REALLY?!?!? Are you telling me those are the people you are fighting for fairness for? For those who willfully take advantage of the system?
Only a few on here have actually articulated many valid points as to what they see as a future, but mostly its people who just say there has to be a change but yet have no clue on what it is supposed to be. A decent into CHAOS is the answer? A one world order? Trust me, I am not going to tell my kids that is the only answer to change. What I do tell my kids and how I raise them is to be respectful of others, help others as much as you can, and work hard. Life is not a freebie like some on here want it to be.

Sacrifice....don't question my sacrifice.

[-] 1 points by tellmewhy (4) 3 years ago

Mountaineer,

Well said. Thank you for your service. I am humbly grateful for all you did.

[-] -1 points by blackbloc (-19) 3 years ago

yes all must sacrifice sorry you dont like it but logic can often conflict with our self constructed universe, sorry but you must be just another brainwashed soldier all i got was you are not open minded from your rant we will all be better off when the globalists and new world order scum are ran out and supporters of the status quo are just as culpable the vision is already established http://www.thevenusproject.com/ and we won't be stopped.http://www.realitysandwich.com/ http://www.evolver.net/

[-] 1 points by tellmewhy (4) 3 years ago

blackbloc,

You aren't worthy to breathe the same air as mountaineer. You will be defeated my anarchist friend...

[-] 0 points by blackbloc (-19) 3 years ago

how does military service killing innocent iraqi and afghan kids yes kids qualify him as better than me

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[-] 1 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

While I agree that we shouldn't be making other people's sacrifice, I would say that for the large part we're not. While the ILWU is formally opposed to the shut down, the workers are not. Also most people involved were paid for the days work. Truckers were not, which is dissapointing, but how do you suggest that we do better?

Promoting an attack on non-violent protesters is not the best idea. The last time this happened was the Hard Hat Riot in New York in 1970. It was a disgusting violent attack on protesters. I sat next to an occupier in Liberty Park who wore a hardhat and came out every day. Everyday he apoloized for what happened that day and said that it was one of the worst things he ever remembers happenning. Anyone who is thoughtless enough to attack a group of non-violent protesters will have to live with that sense of guilt and shame for the rest of their lives.

[-] 0 points by blackbloc (-19) 3 years ago

since now since the world is being destroyed since we cant wait any longer since i cant wait for dillenger to get up off their ass and fix this thing since you are to busy watching dancing with the stars or what ever you watch to do a damn thing we have taken it upon ourselves thank you sorry you have been inconvenienced and had to sacrifice a day's pay to save the world my bad texas why dont you choke on that texas gold

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[-] 2 points by bpmangan (123) from New York, NY 3 years ago

If you think this is an attack on the workers how do you suggest we do things otherwise? The intention was obviously not to shut down the workers but to shut down the companies who own them. How do you suggest we more directly attack those who are the problem? We have tried moving money out of banks, protesting on Wall Street, K Street and all over the world. Suggesting to shoot someone with rubber bullets mace and water cannons is not productive. It may get them off the streets for the day but not long term. What do you suggest we do?

[-] 1 points by lc1 (1) 3 years ago

I suggest you consider the immediate consequences of your actions. OWS is great! Occupying foreclosed homes is brilliant! Occupying K street was inspired, but pushing it because of the blowback as a result of the perception of how it affected people (non-lobbyists) trying to get to work. Occupying the NYC subway system was stupid. As was this. All this does is make it easier for the media to marginalize what you're doing. It places everything you've accomplished thus far at risk.

[-] 0 points by blackbloc (-19) 3 years ago

so you wanna use water cannons and rubber bullets on the 1% i am with it.

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[-] 4 points by brightonsage (4494) 3 years ago

Goldman owns a major share of SSA, I hear.

[-] 2 points by ddert (5) 3 years ago

concentrated wealth is the root source of much of our worlds problems. it is this wealth that is used to fund suppression of true democracy all over the world. one of the most fundamental ways to deal with it is to strike. and the port shutdown is in essence very similar to a port strike at least for one day. in an indirect way it does effect banks. yes its a sacrifice for the working class in a way, but that is how you work your leverage in a system where phony democracy is run by capital. strikes are still probably more powerful than many other more popular tactics of today. shipping is a significant sector of business and industry too.

[-] 1 points by ErinWinslow (1) from Gullbergsvass, Västra Götaland County 3 years ago

Ships and their cargos are OWNED by banks. These banks claim that they don't have enough money to pay a living wage to workers at the same time that they are posting gigantic profits and giving MEGA-bonuses to CEOs.

[-] 2 points by armchairecon1 (169) 3 years ago

i think you are incorrectly using the word bank to encompass any profit oriented enterprise..

[-] 1 points by ronimacarroni (1089) 3 years ago

Also that's were the cheap Chinese manufactured goods come from I guess.

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[+] -8 points by mindless (-9) 3 years ago

It is time to break out the water cannons, rubber bullets and mace to end this anarhist threat to America. I fnecessary mobilize the Ohio National Guard - and Kent State these trogs!

[-] 4 points by Econome (20) 3 years ago

...said the fascist.

[-] 1 points by SwissMiss (2435) from Ann Arbor Charter Township, MI 3 years ago

You picked the perfect name for yourself.

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