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Updated Wednesday Night: Blogging #OccupyUSA—Big NYC March Ends With Arrests, Beatings | The Nation

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Greg Mitchell

Greg Mitchell

Media, politics and culture.

Updated Wednesday Night: Blogging #OccupyUSA—Big NYC March Ends With Arrests, Beatings

Here’s another day of new blog on #OccupyWallStreet as it catches fire around the country. Items added at top, as I take a break from my anti–death penalty writing and new book on that subject. For yesterday’s blog, click on my name at top. All times ET.

11:38 Longer video of beatings tonight, nightsticks flying.

 11:15  Fox local TV cameraman hit by mace, reporter struck by police baton:


10:35  Below: Cops beating people tonight near Wall  Street.

 10:30  Video shot and posted tonight in NYC from inside paddy wagon after arrests.

10:25  Trumka, the AFL-CIO chiefs, backed Occupy today in statement...  New NYT piece tonight on unions backing protests today—despite (allegedly) fears of “far-leftists” in their midst and anti-American attitudes. 

9:40 According to tweets, live streams and more: more calm at same time as more arrests, confrontations, enormous police presence and even copters. But some reports placed arrests at only eight, at least until past hour, when that might have changed. Crowd in park calm but various marches going on or blocked.  Or so say tweets.

8:35  Some marchers still blocked. Some want to keep marching. Many gathered at park, dispersed. Reports of twenty or more arrests, pepper spraying, will take awhile to make sense of whole thing and if will go on for a few hours or end quickly.

8:30  Tim Robbins reportedly at march tonight. I recommend his great satire Bob Roberts as quite apt—mocking Wall Street and media.

7:55 And now it begins in NYC: barriers down, pepper spraying, arrests, paddy wagons. Wild live stream.

7:40  Olbermann tweets: "Erin Burnett self-destruction continues. Graphics tonight: “Banks Are Good For America” “We Should Root For The Banks.”

7:30 Had to turn down slot on Ed Show tonight. But more worthies surely.

7:20 Max Blumenthal has been noting at march the many, many signs urging US to save money by (ahem) cutting aid to Israel. Or backing Palestinian rights. He also spotted cool shirt with: “Revolt Like an Egyptian.”  Perhaps lost on the very young.

7:00 First national poll on Occupy finds 33 percent have favorable view, 27 percent not and 40 percent not sure. What's amazing is the pollster: GOP-leaning Rasmussen! This tops favorable ratings of the Tea Party etc. Poll taken Monday and Tuesday. Fully half of Democrats back.

6:55 Mike Myers in crowd, Ed Schultz says he snagged an interview. Grooovy, baby.

6:35 @MoveOn tweets: “We’ve reached Wall Street and the huge crowd is chanting: ‘The people united will never be divided!’ ” Picture here. Crowd seems to have topped all hopes… Ed Schultz just switched to do show live from park tonight. Ezra Klein live from park on Lawrence O’Donnell. Rachel?

6:30 Playboy Club TV show and Palin candidacy axed on same day. Must be connected to today’s protests? Now old friend David Corn tweets: “Think it’s time for die-hard Tea Partiers to mount to pressure her to change her mind.” She exited with 21 percent approval rating.

6:10 New pro-Occupy piece by always interesting Charles Pierce (who is now at Esquire). There is some hazy utopianism in a lot of the rhetoric here in the park, but not as much as you might have been led to believe, and certainly no more than there is in the average gathering these days of Republicans, who believe in a land where the ‘job creators’ are stifled by the mere possibility of returning the top tax rate to where it was under Bill Clinton, let alone to the 91 percent that prevailed under that Socialist bastard, Ike Eisenhower.”

 

6:05 Dave Winer at Wired: Occupying Facebook!

5:50 NY march so large hard to see how will stay within police guidelines, already tension and big crush not yet near… Meanwhile, in Seattle, police crack down, tents uprooted, possibly some arrested, details to come.

5:15 UAW rep to crowd: “It’s not their money, it’s our money and we’re going to rip open their pockets and take it back.”

5:10 Now here’s the important news at last, via tweet: “The diversity of food at is impressive. Today I see mango chutney and matzah.”

5:00 Resolution introduced at LA city council today to back Occupy, will be voted on Tuesday. L.A. Weekly: “But judging by their dramatic, heart-wrenched personal responses to occupiers during the meeting’s public comment period, no black-sheep council member is going to make the dick move of voting ‘No’ on such a popular cause.”

4:50 Timothy Geithner, saying almost nothing about Occupy: “I feel a lot of sympathy for…a general sense among Americans that we’ve lost a sense of responsibility.”

4:05 Neil Cavuto at Fox showing protest in NY live—but with deflating caption of “hundreds” ready to march. Cavuto mocking it with dimwit guest, who says people targeting wrong people and need to “read more.”

4:00 Teamsters back protest. Hoffa statement. “It’s clear what this movement is all about. It’s about taking America back from the CEOs and billionaires on Wall Street who have destroyed our nation’s economy. It’s about creating good jobs. It’s about corporate America treating its workers and customers with honesty and fairness and paying its fair share to stimulate the economy.”

3:40 NY march already underway, photo courtesy Allison Kilkenny. Happy to say Nation office semi-closing early to attend march. Already this from one marcher: “March to Foley Park is too much permit and sidewalks not enough of what got us here. Taking the fucking streets.”

3:05 Live stream of the great Laura Flanders interviewing folks at Liberty Park. With Todd Gitlin right now.

3:00 Alternet promising livestream coverage of marches at 4 pm.

2:50 Odds & Ends: Michael “Trouble” Moore’s fourth visit to NY site here… Good visuals to come? USC film students starting Occupy there… Campus walkouts plentiful but details sketchy, check @OccupyColleges… Key Los Angeles city council meeting underway, livestream here.

2:20 Russ Feingold backs protests. Says they will “make Tea Party look like a tea party,” or something like that.

2:15 Our own Peter Rothberg with new “Occupy Your City” urging and call for tips and feedback.

1:45 MoveOn tweets: ” Amazing turnout at the American Dream Movement rally on Capitol Hill today!!” Photo offers evidence.

1:40 Senate Dems debate “millionaires’ tax.” Harry Reid talks about a 5 percent surcharge. And if you missed Eliz Warren in debate last night: “‘Wall Street broke this country…one lousy mortgage at a time.’”

1:15 A playlist of apt music videos for Occupyers, with political music only from past five years. Well, I’ve already done Woody, Bruce, Morello and Steve Earle, so this is a good addition.

1:05 Douglas Rushkoff at CNN site insists Occupy is not a “phase,” yet many persist in saying so. Why?

1:00 Young people/activists speak, for the nation and The Nation.

12:55 And I’m back. Tweet from @OccupyWallSt: “NYPD mobilizing to level one according to informers - the march has not yet begun, be careful.” Livestreaming already.

10:15 Sorry, I have to exit for 2-3 hours. See you then!

10:10 Live coverage from the Guardian. More on Jeff Mangum at NY site last night (and see video I posted below).

10:05 NY ACLU ready to help protesters today in person if any trouble with big march. Other Info from them here.

10:00 Boston students (and there are zillions of them) to march at noon today. Apparently a big crackdown on OccupyChicago right now.

9:35 Glenn Greenwald: “Those angry about Erin Burnett’s spectacularly ignorant, snide dismissal of OWS might find her background interesting.”

9:25 Big march ahead and student walkout. Tweet from @RDevro: “The mood in NYC today is electric, ‘Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.’ -Zinn”

9:20 Now Huff Post provides a How You Can Help Occupy page.

9:15 Jay Rosen comments on the CNNer who deleted mocking of Occupy.

9:05 If you haven’t visited the We Are the 99 percent site, do it now. Even pundits critical of Occupy find the personal stories moving (haunting?).

8:55 And now, via Mother Jones, a visit to OccupySesameStreet. Don’t be a grouch. It’s not easy being Green.

8:25 New piece from Lawrence Lessig: “The cure is not hard to imagine. The difficult task—and at times, it seems, impossibly difficult task—is to imagine how that cure might be brought about. The arrest of hundreds of tired and unwashed kids, denied the freedom of a bullhorn, and the right to protest on public streets, may well be the first real green-shoots of this, the American spring. And if nurtured right, it could well begin real change.”

8:20 Harold Meyerson column in Wash Post: “Rescuing America from Wall Street.”

8:05 New CNN piece on national movement and unions joining. “President Michael Mulgrew of the United Federation of Teachers, the sole bargaining agent for most nonsupervisory New York City public teachers with 200,000 members, said he was ‘proud’ to support the Occupy demonstrators, who have been camping out in New York and elsewhere across the nation.”

7:55 Follow @OccupyColleges for updates on today’s noon student “walkout.” They have linked to their Facebook listing of those taking part so far.

7:50 Salon writer Alex Pareene proposes an Occupy Wall Street manifesto: Let’s tackle the debt that actually matters.

7:45 Another day, another Bank of America fraud allegation.

7:40 Democracy Now! with Occupy special, streaming at 8 am at democracy.org.

7:35 Alternet: Van Jones on America’s Uprising—It’s Going Be an Epic Battle

7:30 NYT profiles John E. Zuccotti, the man behind the protest site in NYC.

From late Tuesday

  • Musical guest at NY site, rumored all day for 10 pm/span>, turns out to be Jeff Mangum of Neutral Milk Hotel.

  • Our pal Laura Flanders tweets: “It’s TRUE: Tomorrow, will start covering in NYC with + . TUNE IN!”

  • @Newyorkist tweets reminder from speaker at Liberty Park: “Everyrthing u do here, everything you say,” is being watched. “This is not bonaroo, this not a hippie commune.”

  • Al Jazeera puts Occupy at top right of home page, with photo. And like other sites today (such as at Mother Jones and Daily Kos, as noted below), they have interactive map of activity.

  • Juan Cole compares protests in Egypt and USA, claims the one percenters in Egypt more responsive than one percenters here.

  • Jonathan Alter tweets: “I just visited in NYC. After 13 days, still hopping. In 147 cities/colleges now. Could be Tea Party of left if not hijacked.”

  • The Rude Pundit argues: “The Case for Using Predator Drone Strikes Against Wall St. Execs.” (h/t Barbara Bedway)

  • NYT: Romney calls Occupy “dangerous” and “class warfare.”

  • Financial Times with full article. “As the protests have extended into a third week in New York and sparked similar demonstrations in Los Angeles, Boston, and Chicago, even Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke was asked about the growing movement during an appearance before Congress. ‘Like everyone else, I’m dissatisfied with what the economy’s doing right now,’ Mr Bernanke said, adding that protesters had cause to be unhappy over the economy and political issues.”

Greg Mitchell’s new e-book vs. the death penalty is Dead Reckoning: Executions in America (and just $2.99). His other current book: Atomic Cover-Up, on the censorship of film footage from Hiroshima and Nagasaki for decades.

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