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news and politics » the occupy movement

asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
this began as a post in another thread but became so large as to warrant its own:

hey that is me on my phone on the left!

I am in this one too

today was a long day

last night/today:
- 9 PM-2 AM at occupy boston, trying to hold the expansion
- 2:30-11 in a jail cell in probably the worst jail in the city of boston
- 11:30-4:30 wearing plastic cuffs (seriously painful but never break the skin somehow) in a courthouse jail cell with ten other protest arrestees
- 4:30-5 getting my charges reduced to a civil fine of $50

all half-hour gaps were spent sliding around in the back of a police wagon. luckily I was put in the same wagon and jailed at the same place as a good friend of mine. spent some quality time with a bunch of other dudes as well. hopefully will see them again down there.

I'm trying to maintain my optimism re: the occupy movement. it's just difficult after hearing anarchist kids try to explain/sell the movement to police officers based on leftist political rhetoric peppered with phrases like "horizontal organization" that the vast majority of people in this country are not going understand or sympathize with.

I hope this thing continues. I'd just like to see more leadership from people who are not more politically concerned with their idealistic anti-capitalist economic agendas than with concrete steps that can be taken today to improve the lives of middle and lower class working people. part of me would like to speak up at a general assembly re: these concerns.
Carpetsmoker's avatar
7 years ago
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Carpetsmoker
Martin
Keep up the good work Brian!
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
That's the point of the GAs, asemi! Get on the stack and let your concerns be heard!

I was down at Occupy Houston today ... brought a bunch of food for the crowd and hung out for a bit. Had to pass on a smoking drive, though. :(

There has been plenty of times where I felt the GA alone (ignoring even the rest of the Occupation) would get out of hand and just required more moderation than was being given ... so I'm going to start attending the Facilitation group meetings and try and bring that proper moderation.

Seriously, though, good job standing up for it.
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Funny note, after I read about the Occupy Boston arrests I thought, "Heh ... I wonder if Brian finally made it down there, only to get arrested."
Carpetsmoker's avatar
7 years ago
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Carpetsmoker
Martin
On what charges were you arrested by the way?
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
the GAs inevitably sometimes devolve into people wanting to jerk off all over the crowd about their lifelong political agenda. that's cool you're going to try to get involved in the moderation. the whole process of the GA seemed a bit freewheeling to me at times. I was a little surprised there weren't more people with a better knowledge of how it was supposed to work.
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
oh, and the charges were unlawful assembly and trespassing.
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
and 141 total arrests! the whole day in jail we were a little worried it was going to be some depressing number like 50, because a lot of people bailed at the last minute when the cops would offer to escort you out of the park instead of arresting you. I'm very happy that it was more than 100.
Carpetsmoker's avatar
7 years ago
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Carpetsmoker
Martin
> oh, and the charges were unlawful assembly and trespassing.

What a weak excuse.
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
I love how "unlawful assembly" for a protest even exists.
nestor's avatar
7 years ago
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nestor
nestor
good stuff asemi.

i'm a little torn by the protest concept due to my occupation - i'm definitely not a 1%er, but i directly work for them. i share the desire to have a more egalitarian society and i have always voted that way.

but the actions of the police? NO WAY. if the toronto police act the same way they did during the g20 in summer 2010, there will be big issues up here.
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
I mean it's illegal to camp in both of these parks. I think they close at 11 or something. it's just a misdemeanor either way, and I think the first amendment should probably trump these laws in cases of peaceable assembly.
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
r1, link
asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
yeah I've heard some crazy stuff about the last g20. huge cages in movie studios to hold people who were arrested, etc.

I've heard rumors that the police are planning to break up the original occupation site here. it's going to be a serious shitshow (like far more arrests than 140) if they do this. the expansion site was only occupied for a day or two, but the original site has a lot of infrastructure (food, power, internet, trash, recycling) that's taken weeks to set up so it's not quite as easy as "tear down tent, throw in garbage truck."
Carpetsmoker's avatar
7 years ago
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Carpetsmoker
Martin
you have the right to openly cary firearms but but not the right to assemble after 11PM

... Only in the U.S. ...
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Carpetsmoker: http://opencarry.org/opencarry.html

Most of the country isn't allowed to openly carry firearms.


We've had HPD intelligence come down and visit the occupation site the other day ... aside from that, the cops just leave us alone. Apparently Dallas had some issues with the police last night but that's about the worst I've heard from any Texas occupation.

It makes me sad to see Boston get raided like that, Texas is really reactionary at times and even our (admittedly, openly gay) Mayor just gave us permission to occupy any park within the city limits.
nny's avatar
7 years ago
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nny
M̮͈̣̙̰̝̃̿̎̍ͬa͉̭̥͓ț̘ͯ̈́t̬̻͖̰̞͎ͤ̇ ̈̚J̹͎̿̾ȏ̞̫͈y̭̺ͭc̦̹̟̦̭̫͊̿ͩeͥ̌̾̓ͨ
Yeah the open carry ban in Cali if bullshit.
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
the city government was pretty supportive up until the expansion here. now they're claiming that violent anarchists from outside of boston have hijacked the occupation (untrue).

atlanta was going to get raided by the cops late monday night as well, but the cops called it off. we were hopeful for a few minutes that the same would happen here.
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Asemi, haven't you heard? We're all violent anarchists!
Carpetsmoker's avatar
7 years ago
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Carpetsmoker
Martin
I'm considering joining occupy Amsterdam (http://occupyamsterdam.nl/assemblies) this Saturday.

The difficulty is consolidating this with more mundane stuff. Like my job, and financial situation (return trip to Amsterdam is ~30/40 euro IIRC) ... meh ... Going just a single afternoon is better than not going at all, but the only way this can succeed is long term protests ... you don't change the world in an afternoon of protesting ...
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Hence the term "Occupation", but we've had people come out for a few hours every couple of days just to help out and it's much appreciated.
Carpetsmoker's avatar
7 years ago
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Carpetsmoker
Martin
I would do so gladly, but it's a 1:30 trip (and 1:30) back costing 35 euro (~47 USD) ...
Carpetsmoker's avatar
7 years ago
r2, link
Carpetsmoker
Martin
Just to provide some context, I am currently in debt because some asshole telecom company apparently "forgot" to cancel my subscription on my old address. They sent lots of letter to my *old* address and in the end they "tracked me down" at my new address and sued me. I can't prove that I *did* cancel my subscription (I did so *twice*!) so I'm pretty much fucked.
Total costs: 340 euro (470 USD) down the fucking drain.

Then there's the shit with the Dutch IRS, because I worked *too much* last year I earned more money, meaning I have to pay an extra 1000 euro in taxes. Thanks to working too fucking much. I don't have to pay this all at once, but it's an extra 90 euro/month for a year ...

On top of that, my current job pays very poorly.

So ... Even the 35 euro is a large investment for me at this point ...
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
that is why this movement has to devise a strategy beyond occupying space. I think that there are a lot of sympathetic people out there who don't know enough about it (because the media coverage has sucked) or can't afford to miss work/class/family/etc.
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
also, that situation sounds totally awful.
nny's avatar
7 years ago
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nny
M̮͈̣̙̰̝̃̿̎̍ͬa͉̭̥͓ț̘ͯ̈́t̬̻͖̰̞͎ͤ̇ ̈̚J̹͎̿̾ȏ̞̫͈y̭̺ͭc̦̹̟̦̭̫͊̿ͩeͥ̌̾̓ͨ
As a rational anarchist, I find your abuse of the term "anarchist" to be entirely okay.
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Denver got shut down.

http://www.9news.com/video/default.aspx?bctid=1218020678001
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Also.

http://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_19112322
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
I heard about denver. the news from nyc early this morning was heartening though.
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
It was!
lucas's avatar
7 years ago
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lucas
i ❤ demo
> but not the right to assemble after 11PM

many city parks are closed at night--to both assemblies and individuals--for many reasons. come on...
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
there's certainly good reasons for city ordinances that ban stuff like camping in parks, but the occupations are peacable assemblies that fall or should fall under the first amendment, and have organized infrastructure (power, waste services, etc.) to make any of the justifications for the city ordinances inapplicable. this is no legal opinion, but it makes sense in my head.
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
it just seems that there should be an exception to these city ordinances in the case of constitutionally protected political speech, given that there is no compelling reason for the state to squelch it. (and if they say that there is--I've heard that the bpd is spending "a lot" of money in police details for occupy boston--then they're probably lying.)
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Occupy Rome got really violent today, it seems.

http://english.aljazeera.net//news/asia-pacif … 92784.html
lucas's avatar
7 years ago
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lucas
i ❤ demo
so if i'm simply hanging out with a few friend in a park, i'm kicked out. (this has happened many times to me.)

you're arguing that if we had a political agenda for our meetings, then somehow "the right to assemble" should be expanded to "the right to assemble on any public land we like whenever we want?"
lucas's avatar
7 years ago
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lucas
i ❤ demo
i'm not saying that i think cities should have hours for parks, but the intention is to prevent crime in public. the same goes for bans on open containers on public easements. i don't necessarily support those either.

but they do exist, and not just for subjective enforcement to squelch speech and assembly.
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
europe is crazy.

I think that if your meeting could not reasonably be moved to another location then yes, if people would like to peacably assemble then a city ordinance shouldn't trump that.

if the right to assemble isn't exactly what you said, then what is it?
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
and yes, I know that there are good reasons for them to exist. I'm not saying that they shouldn't. there just aren't any of those problems (crime, public drunkenness) happening at any of the occupy sites.
lucas's avatar
7 years ago
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lucas
i ❤ demo
well i see it as a negative liberty, not a positive liberty. if it's a negative liberty, it doesn't mean you necessarily get the right to use any land you wish.
lucas's avatar
7 years ago
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lucas
i ❤ demo
let's all just read leviathan
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
The NYPD alone has arrested about 1,000 protestors (no source, may be slightly lower, anyway...) for talking loudly and walking around and loitering, which are all misdemeanors, while the people guilty of massive fraud and felonies get protection.
lucas's avatar
7 years ago
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lucas
i ❤ demo
> The NYPD alone has arrested about 1,000 protestors (no source, may be slightly lower, anyway...) for talking loudly and walking around and loitering

if that's true, then that's some bullshit.

> while the people guilty of massive fraud and felonies get protection.

well, i believe in protecting individuals against angry mobs if justice will be served otherwise (e.g., in jail)
nny's avatar
7 years ago
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nny
M̮͈̣̙̰̝̃̿̎̍ͬa͉̭̥͓ț̘ͯ̈́t̬̻͖̰̞͎ͤ̇ ̈̚J̹͎̿̾ȏ̞̫͈y̭̺ͭc̦̹̟̦̭̫͊̿ͩeͥ̌̾̓ͨ
meh the NYPD got caught ticketing a pregnant lady for resting on a stair way in an empty station once. they aren't exactly paragons of morality.
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kOL6cDcLgvU

Dustin, the guy speaking, always kind of reminded me of asemi. haha.
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
well he's certainly got my build.
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Shit's going down in NYC.

http://live.nydailynews.com/Event/Showdown_at … Street_NYC
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
r1, link
asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
boston got a restraining order against the police

there is some interesting stuff in the memo in support of the motion submitted by the aclu and national lawyers guild.
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Go Boston!

HPD raided OH again because putting tarps over tables of electronic equipment, food, and medical supplies constitutes a "tent" in Houston. :-/
asemisldkfj's avatar
7 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
so it all hinges on the definition of tents?

there are some interesting references in that memo to rulings citing the First Amendment. a lot of examples of its broad application to situations in which the means of speech are integral to the idea being expressed. so in the case of the occupy movement, the literal occupation of a part of the city and a demonstration of how a more direct democracy might function may be such an integral part of what is being expressed that it would be protected under the first amendment. might be an interesting legal debate were any of us versed in law.
phi_'s avatar
7 years ago
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phi_
... and let the Earth be silent after ye.
Yeah... I look forward to seeing that discussed at all.
nny's avatar
7 years ago
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nny
M̮͈̣̙̰̝̃̿̎̍ͬa͉̭̥͓ț̘ͯ̈́t̬̻͖̰̞͎ͤ̇ ̈̚J̹͎̿̾ȏ̞̫͈y̭̺ͭc̦̹̟̦̭̫͊̿ͩeͥ̌̾̓ͨ
http://www.music-piracy.com/?p=589 My thoughts on this.
ozntz's avatar
6 years ago
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ozntz
toooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo
As it is starting to warm up do you think 2012 will be the real year of occupy?
nny's avatar
6 years ago
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nny
M̮͈̣̙̰̝̃̿̎̍ͬa͉̭̥͓ț̘ͯ̈́t̬̻͖̰̞͎ͤ̇ ̈̚J̹͎̿̾ȏ̞̫͈y̭̺ͭc̦̹̟̦̭̫͊̿ͩeͥ̌̾̓ͨ
No. Most of the local occupy movements have successfully driven away their moderate / populace interests. Now they are largely just another anti globalization fringe element that people have been ignoring for the past decade and a half. And rightfully so I might add.

I would say Occupy is dead. Murdered by professional activists who leap upon any issue in the public eye seeing it as a mere soap box from which to spout the same crap no one will ever agree with them over. And that is sad.

asemisldkfj's avatar
6 years ago
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asemisldkfj
the law is no protection
that sounds about right. good post to end the thread.