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Occupy Wall Street!


Off-Topic Discussions

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Shadow Lodge

Are the protestors on the right track? Are they mad at the right people? Is the media ignoring the event?

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

Occupying this thread. Down with RPG designers making over 7 figures/year and not giving anything back.

*For the record, I am unaware of anyone in the RPG industry that is making 6 figures/year, let alone 7. My comment was meant in humor. But I support the protesters nonetheless.*


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Or, don't. It came up in another thread, and merits a thoughtful, informed discussion.

IMO, this is not an astroturf movement (unions are starting to get involved only now) like the Teaparty demonstrations, but a genuine organic movement; a reaction to the overreaching of entrenched power and the rigged game they've created. The police reactions to these demonstrations as opposed to the astroturfed ones gives further weight to my assertion, not less.

Occupy Wall Street has some demands. They're not entirely finalized, and your input is invited, should you wish to comment or vote.

I hold that "community organizing" is not a dirty word.

Okay, two words, but you get it. :)

Paizo Employee PostMonster General

[Rather than have two threads on this topic, I've merged them.]

Taldor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Robert Hawkshaw's Placard wrote:
Reform Transfer Pricing! Down with Check the Box! Tax Foreign Accrued Property Interests! More Oversight for Tax Expenditures

Personally I think the current situation is too complex to be easily reduced to slogans or to be split into two political camps. It is unfortunate that issues are forced into black / white binaries instead of debating a spectrum of reasonable policy responses and goals.

Hopefully the movement gains strength but remains inchoate long enough to encourage debate and reflection instead of talking points and division.

Grand Lodge

3 people marked this as a favorite.

I've worked in the financial community for the last 11 years, and have a lot of sympathy of the Occupy Wall Street protesters. What the big banks have done to the United States and its people over the last ten years has truly been atrocious. They are, as Matthew Taibbi says, giant vampire squids.

However:

1) The American people had a share in this mess as well. Millions of us bought houses we couldn't afford.

2) The US Government and regulatory agencies made it sickeningly easy for the vampire squids to do what they did. The are equally culpable.

3) There are a lot of trading firms that provide real value and liquidity to the marketplace. I work at one of them.

I urge anyone who gives a fig about this topic to go listen to NPR's pitch perfect analysis of the 2008 crisis, The Giant Pool of Money.


Perhaps we could start with a rundown of the demands made - both official and unofficial -and a detailed critique of each one? Why is /isn't this a good Idea, etc?

Shadow Lodge

Gary Teter wrote:
[Rather than have two threads on this topic, I've merged them.]

Bah, i SO had the better title :)


1 person marked this as a favorite.

CHAAAAAARGE!
Wait, this is the thread for the invasion, right?
No?
*Puts down mushroom spear with a mournful expression*


BigNorseWolf wrote:
Gary Teter wrote:
[Rather than have two threads on this topic, I've merged them.]
Bah, i SO had the better title :)

Nuh-uh! :P

Taldor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

People seem to be concerned about lobbying and influence.

An interesting article on lobbying

If the way to succeed in a market is to spend money lobbying government, the whole laissez faire market idea starts to crash and burn.

[url http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/10/04/column-dcjohnston-stateless-idUSN1E7921II20111004]Another interesting article about corporate tax reform[/url]

Sczarni

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Keith Olberman reads OWS's 1st collective statement

Shadow Lodge

16 people marked this as a favorite.

Demands:

1) End corporate personhood. A corporation does not exist except on paper, by laws written by the government and subject to the governments will. If you do not have the responsibilities and liability of a human being, you are not a human being. This malarky where 6 people can become a board, commit illegal acts, and all point to a non existent 7th person and say "he did it"

a) no more corporate "soft money"
b) no more paying for congressmans "fact finding trips" to the bahamas
c) No more superpacs.

2) No more treating the economy like a bender in vegas.

-It would take someone with a LOT more economic acumen than i have to figure out how to do this without stiffling the economy, but commodities trading keeps jacking up the price of stuff we by, all for no reason.

-Companies have billions in stock "value" that simply doesn't exist: its a giant ponzi scheme. It works like wile coyote levitation: as long as no one looks down everything stays up. Please realize that eventually someone IS going to look down, and don't allow people to ensure these companies for more than they're worth.

3)Put the regulations back so that no one gets too big to fail. There's a reason that lending and investment banks were separated. part the waters again.

4) Not so fast with that golden parachute

The wall-street bailouts could have been done to the tune of "take the money and run"... thats what they did. You got the government money, looted the company by signing yourself a multi million dollar bonus for being such a great capitalist that you ran your company into the ground and walked away.

You, cash back, NOW.

4) We bailed you out, now return the favor

We gave you the money, the economy didn't get going again, partially because wall-street is sitting on it. If the private sector isn't getting the economy moving again, then have the government tax it and start up another great works project with the money.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

There's an offshoot of this movement in LA. Occupy City Hall. It's been fairly successful. The city council came down and said hi to everyone, the protest has kept an open dialogue with the police to prevent any problems, the tent city has expressed their intent to stay until the end of the year at the least.

City council has expressed their support for the protest and are looking to work directly with the protesters to discuss their demands and how they can be implemented.

source: Daily Breeze (local newspaper), two days ago.

I hear New York is being less reasonable. Smart money says the LA branch gets more done.


sozin wrote:


2) The US Government and regulatory agencies made it sickeningly easy for the vampire squids to do what they did. The are equally culpable.

Just gonna say, a police officer who lets a murderer escape through incompetence is not as bad as the murderer. But I think you're talking more about corruption, right?


ANebulousMistress wrote:
I hear New York is being less reasonable. Smart money says the LA branch gets more done.

The squeeky wheel gets the grease. The more noise they make the better.

Taldor

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Hudax wrote:
ANebulousMistress wrote:
I hear New York is being less reasonable. Smart money says the LA branch gets more done.

The squeeky wheel gets the grease. The more noise they make the better.

The few times I've been hit with tear gas it did not have a calming effect on me. I imagine pepperspray is similar. The spray, batons and mass arrests are counter productive if you are trying to de-radicalize people. Perhaps they are hoping to provoke a riot?


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'm curious about how this will play out if only because I'm overly optimistic. We've got some lessons learned from the Tea Party here. More than likely, as happened with the Tea Party, we'll see the following

1.) Just like the Tea Party's opposition made lies about the Tea Party being a bunch of racists, the oppposition to Occupy Wall Street will make a large number of similarly unfounded personal attacks against Occupy Wall Street

2.) Just as happened with the Tea Party, when that slander proves ineffective, the powers that be will start invading the Occupy Wall Street movement and atteempt to co-opt it so as to prop up the Democratic Party (just as the Tea Party, which started out opposing opposing Republican government bailout of the financial indusdtry ended up being co-opted to support the Republican party).

3.) Just as the Tea Party, which started out strictly focused on protesting the unholy union between Wall Street and the Federal government, but ended up spending all its unfocused attention on a lot of other stuff (like a return to Reagonomics), the Occupy Wall Street crowd will end up distracted (by the late coming "leadership" who will really only be the current powers that be) onto everything else

What really should happen is that those people who believe in the starting princiiples of the Tea Party (rather than the mess the Tea Party became) should find commonality (against big government/big business) in Occupy Wall Street and work with OWS to keep it from being co-opted and subverted by the powers that be.

But that's not gonna happen.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Robert Hawkshaw wrote:
Being hit with tear gas hasn't ever had a calming effect on me. I imagine pepperspray is similar. The spray, batons and mass arrests are counter productive if you are trying to de-radicalize people. Perhaps they are hoping to provoke a riot?

You are correct. Pepperspray is not your friend.

And even Jon Stewart said "Just don't start throwing garbage cans through the window of Starbucks. Cause everyone loves Starbucks."

Joe and Jane Public are not going to be sympathetic to the cause if things get ugly.


I am Comrade Anklebiter and I endorse Occupy Wall Street.

I think that this is their (semi-)official webpage.

The best coverage that I've seen, other than the MANY youtube videos (check out Reverend Billy and the Church of Stop Shopping, hee hee!) has been on Russia Today and some articles on Counterpunch. The Socialist Worker site has also had some good articles. I can't find it now, but my friend showed me a bunch of pictures of a picket line held by the Air Line Pilots Association that were pretty cool, and I've also liked the Occupiers disruption of a Sotheby's auction in support of locked-out Teamsters and, of course, their Zombie March. The occupation of the Brooklyn Bridge was pretty ballsy, too.

Fun stuff.


BigNorseWolf wrote:
Gary Teter wrote:
[Rather than have two threads on this topic, I've merged them.]
Bah, i SO had the better title :)

I missed it. What was your title?

Shadow Lodge

Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Gary Teter wrote:
[Rather than have two threads on this topic, I've merged them.]
Bah, i SO had the better title :)
I missed it. What was your title?

If you can't occupy wallstreet occupy this thread.

Quote:
Just gonna say, a police officer who lets a murderer escape through incompetence is not as bad as the murderer. But I think you're talking more about corruption, right?

This is more a case of, instead of bribing the cop to let the murderer get away with it, they simply bribed the town to make murder legal under a set of conditions so narrow that only the murderer can do it. Not only do they get away with it, but they now have license to do it again.

President, Jon Brazer Enterprises

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Darkwing Duck wrote:
the powers that be will start invading the Occupy Wall Street movement and atteempt to co-opt it so as to prop up the Democratic Party (just as the Tea Party, which started out opposing opposing Republican government bailout of the financial indusdtry ended up being co-opted to support the Republican party).

I wonder if something similar tried to happen with the Whig party when this new Republican party and the Free Soil Democrats came on the scene.

I also wonder if we are living in the last days of the Dems and Repubs and are seeing the formation of the Tea Party Political Party and Whatever the Political Party that Emerges from the Occupy Wallstreet Protests.

As a registered unaffiliated voter, I hope so.


Dale McCoy Jr wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
the powers that be will start invading the Occupy Wall Street movement and atteempt to co-opt it so as to prop up the Democratic Party (just as the Tea Party, which started out opposing opposing Republican government bailout of the financial indusdtry ended up being co-opted to support the Republican party).

I wonder if something similar tried to happen with the Whig party when this new Republican party and the Free Soil Democrats came on the scene.

I also wonder if we are living in the last days of the Dems and Repubs and are seeing the formation of the Tea Party Political Party and Whatever the Political Party that Emerges from the Occupy Wallstreet Protests.

As a registered unaffiliated voter, I hope so.

If I had as much faith as you do in the human condition, I'd believe that Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party would join to form a party in opposition to the Republicrats.

But I'm more jaded than you are. I've seen too much bs - like the idiots who believe that anti-illegal immigration is all racism, the people who were convinced that the Duke Lacrosse team were racist rapists, etc. In other words, I believe that the average person off the street is eager to believe whatever they hear that paints the opposition in the worse possible light. And THAT is what dooms our country.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Darkwing Duck wrote:


What really should happen is that those people who believe in the starting princiiples of the Tea Party (rather than the mess the Tea Party became) should find commonality (against big government/big business) in Occupy Wall Street and work with OWS to keep it from being co-opted and subverted by the powers that be.

But that's not gonna happen.

OWS's roots can be found in a little-known magazine called Ad-Busters.

They are night-and-day different from the astroturf phony "movement" the teaparty was.

When the teapartiers take their blinders off, recognize their mistake, and stop being the stooges of the Kohl brothers, the OWS people will welcome them with open arms.

This is real.

Grand Lodge

Quote:
Just gonna say, a police officer who lets a murderer escape through incompetence is not as bad as the murderer. But I think you're talking more about corruption, right?

Corruption and incompetence.


Benicio Del Espada wrote:

They are night-and-day different from the astroturf phony "movement" the teaparty was.

What was astroturf about the Taxpayer March on Washington in 2009? Be specific.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
Benicio Del Espada wrote:

They are night-and-day different from the astroturf phony "movement" the teaparty was.

What was astroturf about the Taxpayer March on Washington in 2009? Be specific.

Are you familiar with Freedomworks? I rest my case.


Benicio Del Espada wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
Benicio Del Espada wrote:

They are night-and-day different from the astroturf phony "movement" the teaparty was.

What was astroturf about the Taxpayer March on Washington in 2009? Be specific.
Are you familiar with Freedomworks? I rest my case.

Freedomworks was in 2010. I asked you about 2009. Are you able to answer the question?


Darkwing Duck wrote:
Benicio Del Espada wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
Benicio Del Espada wrote:

They are night-and-day different from the astroturf phony "movement" the teaparty was.

What was astroturf about the Taxpayer March on Washington in 2009? Be specific.
Are you familiar with Freedomworks? I rest my case.
Freedomworks was in 2010. I asked you about 2009. Are you able to answer the question?

Same answer. Textbook definition of astroturfing.

Can you provide proof that AdBusters is secretly funded by moneyed interests? Quid-pro-quo, Clarisse! ;)

Shadow Lodge

Personally, like the early Tea Party movement, I have a hard time understanding how demonstrations and protests like OWS could possibly have any impact on how things are. Wouldn't you just monitor the group to protect your interests, and then just carry on with business as usual?


Benicio Del Espada wrote:


Freedomworks was in 2010. I asked you about 2009. Are you able to answer the question?

Same answer. Textbook definition of astroturfing.

So, you have no actual proof.

Benicio Del Espada wrote:


Could you provide proof that AdBusters is secretly funded by moneyed interests?

Why?


Darkwing Duck wrote:
Benicio Del Espada wrote:


Freedomworks was in 2010. I asked you about 2009. Are you able to answer the question?

Same answer. Textbook definition of astroturfing.

So, you have no actual proof.

Benicio Del Espada wrote:


Could you provide proof that AdBusters is secretly funded by moneyed interests?

Why?

I'll rephrase the question. Can you prove that Freedomworks is anything but an astroturf organization?


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Can we not turn this into a Tea Party thread? Just asking.

Because, you know, we just spun it off the Herman Cain thread to prevent a derail and derailing the derail is a bit much.


Benicio Del Espada wrote:
I'll rephrase the question. Can you prove that Freedomworks is anything but an astroturf organization?

You're putting the cart before the horse. FIRST, you have to prove that the Taxpayer March in 2009 happened only because of Freedomworks. Then, SECOND, assuming you can prove the previous claim, -you- (not me, as I'm not the one making a positive assertion) have to prove that Freedomworks is astroturf.


thejeff wrote:

Can we not turn this into a Tea Party thread? Just asking.

I think there are some commonalities between the Tea Party and OWS which need discussion, but I agree that the primary focus should be OWS.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Hey, jeff, remember a few months back when you wanted to know where the radical socialists were in the national discussion? Looks like you've got your answer.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

They're everywhere. Isn't it great!

They've just been hiding.

More seriously, I doubt most of them are radical socialists. Most are just pissed off.

I think that's where the similarity to the Tea Party comes in. There's a lot of anger out there. The Tea Party is the result of the right tapping into that anger. This may be the result of the left doing the same.

I hope it won't be as easy to co-opt. It doesn't have the media backing (and direction) that Fox gave the TP from the start.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
Benicio Del Espada wrote:
I'll rephrase the question. Can you prove that Freedomworks is anything but an astroturf organization?
You're putting the cart before the horse. FIRST, you have to prove that the Taxpayer March in 2009 happened only because of Freedomworks.
Not really, there were other astroturfers involved, as well, but they are still the very embodiment of an astroturf organization.
Quote:
Then, SECOND, assuming you can prove the previous claim, -you- (not me, as I'm not the one making a positive assertion) have to prove that Freedomworks is astroturf.

Here.

This is old news.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
thejeff wrote:

They're everywhere. Isn't it great!

Yes, yes it is.

I'm sure they're not all BUT: a) their original statement--can't find it now--called for workers to go on strike and occupy their factories which is pretty damn socialist if you ask me; b) all the left groups are all over this thing; c) I was watching a clip today of a Fox News reporter interviewing a guy in a Union army hat (back when the GOP was cool) and it starts off with the reporter saying something like "You and your fellows, compatriots..." when he gets cut off by someone off screen who supplies "Comrades."

I travelled down to Boston the night before Occupy Boston started to go to attend a socialist meeting and was going to go back for the big kick off, but then my car seized up!

Aargh! I'm going to miss the revolution because of a faulty battery cable!


Benicio Del Espada wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:
Benicio Del Espada wrote:
I'll rephrase the question. Can you prove that Freedomworks is anything but an astroturf organization?
You're putting the cart before the horse. FIRST, you have to prove that the Taxpayer March in 2009 happened only because of Freedomworks.
Not really, there were other astroturfers involved, as well, but they are still the very embodiment of an astroturf organization.
Quote:
Then, SECOND, assuming you can prove the previous claim, -you- (not me, as I'm not the one making a positive assertion) have to prove that Freedomworks is astroturf.

Here.

This is old news.

This is the last post I'll make regarding whether the Tea Party started off as astroturf because this thread is about OWS.

You have provided ZERO evidence that Leach or Carender were astroturfers. You just want us to believe that freedomworks tapped into some magical energy source from never never land. It is much more parsimonous with the actual facts on the ground that freedomworks saw a financial opportunity in supporting an already existing groundswell represented by such people as Leach and Carender then it is that they took a huge financial risk in pulling the whole thing out of a magician's hat.


Darkwing Duck wrote:


This is the last post I'll make regarding whether the Tea Party started off as astroturf because this thread is about OWS.

You have provided ZERO evidence that Leach or Carender were astroturfers. You just want us to believe that freedomworks tapped into some magical energy source from never never land. It is much more parsimonous with the actual facts on the ground that freedomworks saw a financial opportunity in supporting an already existing groundswell represented by such people as Leach and Carender then it is that they took a huge financial risk in pulling the whole thing out of a magician's hat.

The proof is in those articles and easily confirmed; just a click away. Do a little self-education, if you dare. I made my point and proved it abundantly. Your Stockholm syndrome here is distressing. I can lead you, but I can't make you drink.


Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
I'm sure they're not all BUT: a) their original statement--can't find it now--called for workers to go on strike and occupy their factories

I've seen several different platforms allegedly from OWS, most of which are ludicrous (one set of issues I saw, for example, was for completely open borders AND a $20.00/hr minimum wage - it doesn't take sixth grade economics to figure out the consequences of that).

I don't think OWS has an official platform yet and, until it does, I'm going to be very cautious with any assumptions as to what they are about.


It would be interesting to see if this turns violent.

I think that there are two sides in this country that hate/despise each other and they need to work things out - even if it goes all 1861.

This country is way overdue for a reset.

...or a shut off.

Either one would be good - anything less means a co-opted movement and someone got paid off.


Benicio Del Espada wrote:
Darkwing Duck wrote:


This is the last post I'll make regarding whether the Tea Party started off as astroturf because this thread is about OWS.

You have provided ZERO evidence that Leach or Carender were astroturfers. You just want us to believe that freedomworks tapped into some magical energy source from never never land. It is much more parsimonous with the actual facts on the ground that freedomworks saw a financial opportunity in supporting an already existing groundswell represented by such people as Leach and Carender then it is that they took a huge financial risk in pulling the whole thing out of a magician's hat.

The proof is in those articles and easily confirmed; just a click away. Do a little self-education, if you dare. I made my point and proved it abundantly. Your Stockholm syndrome here is distressing. I can lead you, but I can't make you drink.

The sourcewatch articles you keep pointing to are about 98% unsourced (that means they don't cite where they got about 98% of their content). That makes political news from them about as reliable as political news from a paranoid schizophrenic street person.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
Benicio Del Espada wrote:
Your Stockholm syndrome here is distressing. I can lead you, but I can't make you drink.
The sourcewatch articles you keep pointing to are about 98% unsourced (that means they don't cite where they got about 98% of their content). That makes political news from them about as reliable as political news from a paranoid schizophrenic street person.

Wrong on both counts, but I said it already. If you refuse to know, you won't.


Darkwing Duck wrote:
Comrade Anklebiter wrote:
I'm sure they're not all BUT: a) their original statement--can't find it now--called for workers to go on strike and occupy their factories

I've seen several different platforms allegedly from OWS, most of which are ludicrous (one set of issues I saw, for example, was for completely open borders AND a $20.00/hr minimum wage - it doesn't take sixth grade economics to figure out the consequences of that).

I don't think OWS has an official platform yet and, until it does, I'm going to be very cautious with any assumptions as to what they are about.

If you're disputing that they're radical socialists, that's fine, this part of the conversation is a little bit of an inside thing from a previous thread between thejeff and I.

If you're disputing the actual sentence you quoted, well, it wasn't a demand, per se, so much as a call for people to join them. Just like they've called on people across the country to occupy stuff in their hometowns. I'll go look for it again.


The Crypt Keeper wrote:

It would be interesting to see if this turns violent.

I think that there are two sides in this country that hate/despise each other and they need to work things out - even if it goes all 1861.

I don't. I think there are those with power and those without power and a common tactic to keep power is to turn those without power against each other. For example,

a.) poor whites and poor blacks fight each other for crumbs while wealthy whites and wealthy blacks stay in power and occassionally stir up s*!# (by claiming racism or reverse racism). The Duke Lacross rape claim is an example of this where, fortunately, the powers that be ended up getting busted.

b.) business owners wanting to ensure access to below minimum wage keep painting people against illegal immigration as racists when what would really benefit the poor (on both sides of the border) the most is to enforce immigration restriction laws

c.) despite the fact that OWS and the Tea Party both started off protesting the unholy union between big business and big government, third parties fed people who are now in OWS a constant diet of lies that the Tea Party are racists - which will probably keep OWS and the Tea Party from working together to benefit society

Cheliax Bella Sara Charter Superscriber

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Darkwing Duck wrote:
The sourcewatch articles you keep pointing to are about 98% unsourced (that means they don't cite where they got about 98% of their content). That makes political news from them about as reliable as political news from a paranoid schizophrenic street person.

Hey now! I get all my news from a paranoid schizophrenic street person. He's at least as reliable as cable news and even helped me craft the tinfoil hat that protects me from the orbital mind lasers.


Here.

Now, like you say, there's lots of programs floating around, but as far as I can tell (and I've been watching this from the beginning, albeit from afar), this is the closest thing they have to an official website.

So much so, that they've already started denouncing other websites that claim to speak for them. Sounds like a bunch of radical socialists to me!

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