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The OccupyUSA Blog for Tuesday (Oct. 25), With Frequent Updates | The Nation

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Greg Mitchell

Greg Mitchell

Media, politics and culture.

The OccupyUSA Blog for Tuesday (Oct. 25), With Frequent Updates

I’ve been live-blogging OWS since October 1. For yesterday’s blog, click on my name at top. All times ET.  E-mail: epic1934@aol.com.  Twitter @gregmitch.  

-- GO HERE where coverage continues on Wednesday edition of this blog.

11:55 Meanwhile, Atlanta Journal-Constitution on eviction in Atlanta.

11:45 Multiple reports of "sound cannon" being used.  One witness says guy on bike riding through gave cop the finger and he caught a rubber bullet in the chest in reply.

11:35  New double-livestream view below from Oakland.  But they are also cutting to Baltimore, where eviction is pending, and to Atlanta, where eviction happening now.    In Oakland, several different sites where confrontations on or possible as outrage grows.  And Atlanta being evicted now, it seems.

 11:30  Josh Holland on the ground in Oakland on the radio.

11:20  See dramatic video of moment tear gas thrown into large crowd tonight.  Spectacular street-view video here of tear gassing and chaos....  And it's far from over in Oakland.  Witness: "A protester just threw $$$ at the police line yelling 'will you protect us now?'"... As noted earlier, besides live coverage below, local ABC has continuing coverage from overhead. ... Reports of multiple people struck by...something...and on the ground.... other trying to avoid being arrested or kettled.

11:05 KRON TV coverage of Oakland crisis.  ABC coverage here from copter and on scene. Epic photo of woman in wheelchair amid gas.

Broadcasting live with Ustream

10:55 More from Oakland.  Max Blumenthal sends along picture of person bleeding from head, struck by rubber bullet?  And  to think that the city cited "health and safety" reasons for breaking up the camp this morning....Some children in crowd, women in wheelchairs. 

10:50  Meanwhile, red alert from Atlanta: "Being evicted!"

10:45 Tear gas used in Oakland in new major confrontation. I'll try to cover via tweets and livestream. East Bay reporter:  "Just got teargassed. Am legitimately terrified."  12 arrested earlier this evening.  People running while also saying will keep resisting.  Hundreds of cops, hundreds of protesters. 

10:40  Here we go again.  @occupyoakland:  : "Police reading riot act. Telling protesters to disperse."

10:30  Just watched new film "Margin Call." Quite good and harsh on The Street.  More tomorrow.

8:30  As complaints, and support, from neighborhood rise, community board  just passed a resolution on some key matters--including, naturally, the drumming. 

8:20  Michael Kazin, historian of left and populist movements, argues in new Salon piece that it is time for OWS to move from "tactics" to "strategy."  For it to go anywhere, "the Occupiers have to figure out, to some degree, what kind of demands they want to make. That doesn’t mean they need a 12-point program, but maybe a three-point program. They have to figure out what sort of relationship they want to have with existing groups on the left. But with no leaders and everything run by consensus, how do you make these decisions?"

8:10  Just up at NYT:  three young men sought in Zuccotti Park death threat against a woman who was attacked earlier.  Bizarre, scary, story, also involves drug dealing. Times posts photo and brief video showing two of the alleged  perps.

8:00 There's a new celeb endorsement every day, and today it comes from Bette Midler, who has backed environmental causes in the past.  On The View today she said she was so inspired she was offering to pay for some porta-potties to be sent down to Zuccotti.   Then she asked Joy Behar to go in on it with her, but no dice.  Bette also chided rightwingers for not coming up with a fresher slam than "dirty hippie."

7:55 Livesteam from Baltimore camp, which faces eviction tonight.

7:35  New CBS/NYT poll is best yet for OWS.   Generally agree 43% / Disagree 27% / Unsure 30%.    By 46 % to 34% they say OWS reflects views of most Americans.   And by 66% to 26% they agree wealth should be distributed more fairly.  So let the class war begin!   Socialism, even.

7:15  They are marching in Oakland at this hour and not sure if big trouble looming or not.

6:05  Pal at The Nation, and fellow Phil Ochs fan, Peter Rothberg, with new "15 Ways to Help Occupy"  Speaking of Phil, it's gone from "send me an audio tape from California" to "see livestream from California."

5:35 Obama going on Jay Leno tonight, but has not yet met with OWS. ..Speaking of one-liners, how is this:  We need to get millions to switch from Classic Koch to Koch Zero.

5:25  Great: OccupyChicago protesters, led by hero nurses, confront Rahm's chief of staff, who eventually flees (see video). 

5:20  From @occupyoakland:  "Jails are reporting $10k bail and holding arrestees til Thur arraignment. Call Mayor to demand cite&release! 510-238-3141."

5:00 After a couple of print editions, the cool Occupied Wall Street Journal has gone online, English and Spanish.  Good looking home page, too, nice photos and video, also.  Even has story on Oakland this morning.

4:50  I covered this here last night but now video posted of great OWS discussion on Charlie Rose last night with Amy Goodman and Chris Hedges.

4:40  OccupyArrests now with own page, at FB, with Oakland busts total up to 2430. 

4:35  Tom Morello, as we noted earlier, just arrived at OccupyLA--and, as he did in Vancouver last week, giving away tickets to his gig tonight (great but too bad, career-wise, that  his shows not selling out).  His "Ghost of Tom Joad" in Vancouver:

 4:15  Occupy San Diego putting out alert of possible police action there.... Frank Rich and Adam Moss talk about OWS at New York mag.  A fair amount of hooey from Moss. ... New Yorker review loves new film "Margin Call," says it helps explains OWS.... they are putting up signs to mark lanes at Zuccotti, @RDevro notes corner of Jefferson and Trotsky.

2:55 Amazing article in New Scientist, you simply have to read to get it.   "AS PROTESTS against financial power sweep the world this week, science may have confirmed the protesters' worst fears. An analysis of the relationships between 43,000 transnational corporations has identified a relatively small group of companies, mainly banks, with disproportionate power over the global economy.... the study, by a trio of complex systems theorists at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, is the first to go beyond ideology to empirically identify such a network of power....

"When the team further untangled the web of ownership, it found much of it tracked back to a "super-entity" of 147 even more tightly knit companies - all of their ownership was held by other members of the super-entity - that controlled 40 per cent of the total wealth in the network. "In effect, less than 1 per cent of the companies were able to control 40 per cent of the entire network," says Glattfelder. Most were financial institutions. The top 20 included Barclays Bank, JPMorgan Chase & Co, and The Goldman Sachs Group."

2:45  More on the Bonus Army occupations of 1932, one of my fave subjects.  "Pure Americanism."  And video below:

 2:20  Transcript of my appearance on Countdown last night.  For video, see below.

2:10  New from Matt Taibbi at Rolling Stone:  OWS's Beef--Wall Street Isn't Winning, It's Cheating.     "And we hate the rich? Come on. Success is the national religion, and almost everyone is a believer. Americans love winners.  But that's just the problem. These guys on Wall Street are not winning – they're cheating. And as much as we love the self-made success story, we hate the cheater that much more....That's why it's so obnoxious when people say the protesters are just sore losers who are jealous of these smart guys in suits who beat them at the game of life. This isn't disappointment at having lost. It's anger because those other guys didn't really win, and people now want the score overturned."  Compares fat cats to baseball cheaters like Bonds and McGwire.

2:00 From The Onion:  "Wall Street Executive Suffering Heart Attack Realizing Everyone Just Going To Let Him Die On Sidewalk."

1:50  Tom Morello re-Occupying L.A. at 1 pm today out there, calls for big turnout.   This follows his appearances in LA, NYC, Seattle, Vancouver (and giving free tix to his gig there).

1:45  Greg Palast today on Democracy Now!  probes Goldman Sachs vs. Occupy.

1:20  I've covered most of these polls on OWS but DailyKos has a good summary.

1:05  Elizabeth Warren in Daily Beast claims she created much of the "intellectual" underpinning of OWS. (h/t Barbara Bedway)  She has also said she was Republican into her 40s. 

12:20   Oakland press conf via livestream (see below):  City official claiming "health and safety and sanitation" problems.  Then conditions "deteriorated."   Medical, police, fire denied access.  Human waste.   Vandalism.  Flammaable material. "City remains committed" to rights. But "plaza closed."  Will not allow camping ever.Now police on:  75 arrests after warnings.  During operation we used tear gas, rubber bullets.  "That will be investigated."    Thanks numberous local PD units, showing how wide this was/is.   "No injuries reported."  People allowed to leave peacefully.  Now fire official:  Citing code on flames.  About to take questions. 

Why mayor not at press conf?  He is in D.C.  Our man "Punk Boy" asks: Why 2nd camp raided after 6 am when they allowed to be there?  Cop claims got there at 4:30 and warned and doing things now allowed at any time.   Punk Boy follows up: What part of constitution allows that?  Ignored.  Next: Why tear gas?  Felt threat.  Why "flash bangs"?  Didn't catch answer exactly. 

AFL-CIO guy asks why at time of cutbacks to workers and pensions how do you justify costs of this mass mobilization? What is exact cost to taxpayers?  City official: We tried to avoid this, not able to resolve, no choice.   Then questions about arrests, charges (mainly misdemeanors, for unlawful assembly).   Pleased with the way things went this morning?  Police:  yes, no injuries, minimal property damage, people allowed to protest but no overnight camping. 

Punk Boy shouts out: "Do you feel you are on the wrong side of history?"  Woman asks: "Why is my daughter in jail?"  Wild roundup.  Punk Boy: "They lied when they said they didn't rough anyone up.  I saw it firsthand."  Then he explains to skeptic how the hell he got in press conf to begin with? "I showed them I had more than 500 viewers on UStream." 

12:15  "PunkBoyinSF" shooting livestream in Oakland allowed by police to go through lines and attend press conference right now, watch below.  Signal going in and out due to walls, probably.

11:40  Glenn Greenwald on how the rich subverted the legal system--and sparked Occupy.

11:35  New livestream of continuing confrontation in Oakland as marchers move on City Hall.  Jerry Brown must be glad he got out of Dodge.  Does he have anything to say about this now?.... Note: Obama across the bay in San Francisco today, presumably for a fundraiser (his chief activity this week,  it seems).

Live video for mobile from Ustream

 11:25  What OWS is up against:  Greens livid that Obama has hired as a senior aide for campaign a former lobbyist for the Keystone pipeline.

11:15  Today's song pick for Occupyers and fans, REM does Leonard Cohen's great "First We Take Manhattan."   They sentenced me to twenty years of boredom / For trying to change the system from within...You loved me as a loser / and now you're worried that I kist might win.... You want to try to stop me / but you don't have the discipline.

11:05  A couple on Long Island try to trademark "Occupy Wall Street" and make a buck off it.  Reminder: This is America.

11:00 Key vote coming up tomorrow night at Zuccotti on much-debated "spokes" council of  "elected" semi-leaders to speed process.  Was put off last Friday after heated discussion at park.

10:30  First fantastic photo gallery of police raid in Oakland this morning, wide variety of shots during arrests and tear down.   Campers rallying at 4 pm at Oakland Library, they say.  See items below....Marchers in Oakland regrouped and now blocking a street, police give them five minutes to disperse or face further arrests... Democracy Now! coverage of Oakland raid. .

10:05  See video of my segment on "Countdown" last night.

9:55 Smithsonian mag cites my very #OWS relevant book, "The Campaign of the Century,"  when Upton Sinclair led one of greatest mass movements in U.S. history to "End Poverty."

9:45  Interesting point by John Stauber:  Obama is getting "primary challenge" after all -- from Occupy.  Even better than Eliz Warren taking him on. (h/t Barbara Bedway)

9:40  Meanwhile, in Baltimore, the city has just given the Occupyers until tomorrow to evacute.  Campers call for mass turnout.

9:30  This ain't no party, this ain't no disco:  Police then raided second, smaller camp in Oakland a few minutes ago.  SF Chron reports: "at a smaller encampment at Snow Park near Lake Merritt..... One man went limp, but those arrests also happened quickly and without incident amid cries of protest by onlookers yelling, Cops! Pigs! Murderers'"   Reportedly 70 arrests so far today.   Streets closed in area, businesses asked to tell workers to arrive late.

 

9:20  Naomi Klein tweets: "I visited last week and was deeply impressed with the organization, even saw urban planning students helping draft designs."

9:05  More from Oakland: first mainstream news piece from SF Chronicle.  Reports dozens of arrests.  Use of "flash bang" grenades but claim that "tear gas" was actually smoke bomb used by protesters.   "It appeared that most of the arrests took place without incident. But one man was shown on television actively resisting by kicking his legs and yelling. Two officers calmly escorted him away. An officer fired a non-lethal projectile from a shotgun at a protester who had lobbed a bottle, authorities said."

8:50  More on Oakland: Major BART station shut to keep people from coming to scene.   One tweeter reports seeing a TANK.  Photo of tear gas used here.  

8:40  From SF Chronicle:  “People are going to keep coming back. What are they going to do, send cops in every night and waste taxpayer dollars?” asked Gabe Meyers. “The cops are the 99 percent, but they’re doing the work of the 1 percent. Wall Street is proud of them every time they clear out an encampment.”

8:00  Bulletin from @OccupyOakland which has been under pressure for some time:  "attacked by 500 cops in suprise assault. tear gas, rubber bullets, shotguns, flash bang grenades. Many injured....Marching band still goes on....Still no word from expansion camp.....Police protest the 1%."   Injuries unconfirmed.   Rubber bullets ditto.

12:15  My OWS segment on "Countdown" tonight soon to be posted.  On wild smears against Occupy and impact.  And Keith O just got to talk about Occupy for a few minutes on Letterman tonight.

 12:05 AM  Very strong OWS segment on Charlie Rose just now with Amy Goodman and Chris Hedges (who followed Paul Volcker on the show) -- and now John Carlos appears on Tavis Smiley in our area.   Charlie acted sympathetic and Amy and Chris were both at their best, with Goodman expressing more the activist side and Hedges the intellectual (while recalling his own seminarian past).  Both were very strong backers of the democratic structure of OWS and lack of leaders and agreed it was a good idea to this point to not make specific demands.   Amy went pretty far in calling it a kind of "revolution" and said there was, indeed, some reason to think Tea Partiers might be "listening."   Hedges said, however, there was much of an element of "Fascism" in the Tea Party.   Amy said Obama is now in trouble because so many who backed him are now disappointed and finding another "movement." (She made a glancing mention of storming the Bastille.)   She also said that it would be hard to Democrats and other groups to co-opt OWS because no obvious leaders to entice and there's a wholly refreshing spirit that can't be manipulated in the standard ways .

Very strong and eloquent 25 minutes--a rare extended "progressive" segment on major TV, with Bill Moyers gone.   Amy even mentioned John Carlos'  visit to Zuccotti providing a nice lead-in to Smiley. 

12:02 AM Snarky piece at Gawker (of course) on Zuccotti Park drummers but with a serious edge -- many in park do want them to curtail the noise and it also threatens to cause community board to push for shutdown of the encampment.

 

Greg Mitchell’s 12th book is new e-book vs. the death penalty,  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.  He's also recently written books about WikiLeaks and Bradley Manning.  His book The Campaign of the Century: Upton Sinclair's Race for Governor of California and the Birth of Media Politics won the Goldsmith Book Prize.

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