Live-blogging OWS daily since October 1. Email: email@example.com. All times ET. See my e-book on Occupy "40 Days That Shook the World." My other books, including new ones on Bradley Manning and Beethoven, here....
10:45 Up-close report at Alternet on Wells Fargo locking out shareholders and cutting meeting short in SF, cowardly acts, instead of facing the music.
9:00 Frontline two-part Wall Street scandal about to start--opens with Occupy protests last fall -- plus their site has much, much more including full interviews.
5:10 Meanwhile, protests in D.C. go on, were outside DOJ, now White House, arrests likely.
4:50 @KQEDNewsLive in SF with latest from inside Wells Fargo meeting: "Seconds into CEO's remarks a man got up & shouted '...the 99% bailed out WellsFargo with its tax dollars.'" Then: "A woman says 'Wells Fargo, stop investing in private prisons and immigrant detention.' She's escorted out." Also: "Over a dozen Wells Fargo meeting attendees stand up and chant 'mic check' repeatedly." And: "Protester: 'Not a terrific year for all the families foreclosed on by Wells Fargo.' CEO: 'You're out of order ma'am.'" Then Wells Fargo ends meeting quickly.
3:20 Large crowd in SF now (see livestreams below) trying to block the Wells Fargo meeting, linking arms, some scuffles with cops. One person to follow on twitter would be @JoshuaHol
1:20 Livestreams of big Wells Fargo protest in SF right now, going all afternoon. The first one, at least for now, is focusing on the direct action at the site of the shareholders meetint, the one below that on a large march.
10:45 Just got press release from folks behind major shareholder protest in San Fran, 10 am Pacific Time: "Today, thousands of people will confront Wells Fargo executives at the financial institution’s annual shareholder meeting, risking arrest by attempting to shut down the meeting and disrupt the proceedings in order to demand Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf and other executives address the concerns of the 99%.
"The 99% activists include a diverse group of shareholders, homeowners facing foreclosure, immigrant rights activists, faith organizations and labor groups from around the country. Protesters will call on the bank to end practices that profit from community losses, including foreclosure, predatory lending, tax dodging, and investment in private prisons. The groups are demanding that the bank halt foreclosure pending investigation and reform, help homeowners by resetting post-bubble mortgages to their fair market values, divest from private prisons and immigrant detention centers, pays its fair share of federal taxes, and end predatory lending practices to individuals and municipalities."
10:15 Today is shareholder action today with the Wells Fargo protest in SF getting major buildup. Here is a good background piece on the whole issue.
9:40 Two-part PBS Frontline opens tonight on credit default scandal, the Wall Street bailout, financial crisis and government moves. Two hours tonight, final segement next Tuesday.... New Tim Noah book on death of the American middle-class.... Romney today backs Obama student loan proposal...
9:10 NYT: Occupyers look to party conventions at end of summer. "Every four years, the political conventions become magnets for mass protests, but this year the Occupy movement has added an unpredictable element to the mix....In planning protests this time around, for the conventions, social media is likely to play a bigger role." Ya think?
9:00 Transcript of Noam Chomsky interview at Alternet: "The Occupy communities were extremely valuable. These were communities that just kind of spontaneously developed out of mutual support, public interchange and the kinds of things that are very much lacking in an atomized society like ours’, where people are kind of alone. The social unit that the business world strives for is a dyad, a pair. You and your television or you and your computer screen. That was broken by the Occupy movement in a very significant way. Just the possibilities of cooperation, solidarity, mutual support, public discussion, democratic participation is a model which should inspire people."
8:45 Zizek, who spoke at Zuccotti last fall, with important piece today at The Guardian, drawn from talk he will give in NYC tomorrow, and related to new book. "(O)ne of the great dangers the protesters are facing: the danger that they will fall in love with themselves, with the nice time they are having in the 'occupied' places. Carnivals come cheap – the true test of their worth is what remains the day after, how our normal daily life will be changed. The protesters should fall in love with hard and patient work – they are the beginning, not the end. Their basic message is: the taboo is broken, we do not live in the best possible world; we are allowed, obliged even, to think about alternatives."
Also: "The protesters should beware not only of enemies, but also of false friends who pretend to support them, but are already working hard to dilute the protest."
7:55 Occupyers end camp in Fairbanks, Alaska after six months.... Mayor of Wilmington, Del., has ordered OWSers to split from plaza... Portland, Ore. cops warn protesters they will be on short leash on May Day....From Occupy Portland: Confessions of a Banker With a Bullhorn:
From late Monday
Email press release just now: "National People’s Action (NPA) Executive Director George Goehl was arrested today alongside nine members of Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement (Iowa CCI) during a protest at a Wells Fargo office in downtown Des Moines, Iowa, just one day before the big bank’s shareholder meeting in San Francisco, which is expected to draw thousands of demonstrators.
"Dozens of protesters entered Wells Fargo’s downtown Des Moines offices and refused to leave until CEO John Stumpf agreed to give the 99% Power coalition 1 hour of time during the shareholders meeting in San Francisco Tuesday to present their grievances to top bank officials."
A modest proposal from Tom Watson: Bloomberg should make Occupy and other protesters a prime "tourist attraction" on May 1. E.g., "Erect a viewing platform for the march in City Hall Park and hang there all afternoon, like a secular New York Archbishop on Lefty St. Patrick’s Day. Extra credit for all the great hand-shaking photos with labor leaders."
Busy day for Tom Morello in NYC on May 1. Besides helping to spur the "general strike" leading a "guitar army" of 1000 or more, he wiill pick up an award given by the Sidney Hillman Foundation (as it also passes out its book and magazine prizes) that evening.