The Occupy Wall St movement is spreading quickly across the USA. Mother Jones magazine has put together an interactive map on where the protests are spreading to, and at last count there were over 60 locations!
The ‘Occupy’ demonstrations are the blowback – long overdue – of the foreign-plus-financial policy of a great power which has for long dampened criticsm and fair a representative politics at home.
The ‘Occupy’ demonstrations express a broader public understanding that the basic source of the crisis facing millions of people lies in the social interests of the sprawling and powerful global financial system – of which Wall St is one symbol; a powerful symbol but nevertheless one amongst many similar symbols.
Dogged by debt and haunted by ever newer forms of deprivation, the American protesters have ‘taken’ Wall St to call and end to the reign of the giant banks that dominate the US and world economy. Their politics is determined not by the popular will, but by the interests of a cunning financial aristocracy ruthlessly absorbed with defending its wealth by impoverishing the majority of their fellow citizens.
The answer – Occupy Everywhere!
Mother Jones has provided a very useful timeline of the Occupy Wall Street movement:
- July 13: The Canadian magazine Adbusters makes a call to Occupy Wall Street.
- August 30: The hacktivist collective known as Anonymous releases a video answering the call and encouraging others to follow suit.
- September 17: Nearly 1,000 gather to protest corporate greed and begin occupying the financial district in New York City.
- September 19: Roseanne Barr is the first celebrity to lend support to the so-called NYC General Assembly.
- September 20: The NYPD starts arresting protestors for wearing masks, citing an arcane law that prohibits masked gatherings of two or more people with an exception: “a masquerade party or like entertainment.” The police soon become more forceful.
- September 22: Demonstrators interrupt a Sotheby’s Auction, “in a show of solidarity with the art handler’s union that had been locked out.” This is the first instance of labor unions and the movement locking step.
- September 24: 80 protestors are arrested during a peaceful march; a video of a police officer pepper-spraying a nonthreatening woman goes viral.
- September 26: Anonymous allegedly leaks the name and details of the police officer who wielded the pepper spray.
- September 27: The Occupy Wall Street campaign comes out in support of postal workers who are protesting their reduced five-day work week.
- September 28: Transport Workers Union votes to support Occupy Wall Street; over 700 Continental and United Airline pilots demonstrate in front of Wall Street.
- September 30: More than 1,000 demonstrators march on NYPD headquarters, protesting the police response against the demonstrators.
- October 1: Over 700 demonstrators are arrested for marching across the Brooklyn Bridge and blocking traffic.
- October 5: Major labor unions endorse the movement and join in a march on New York’s financial district. According to ABC News, as many as 15,000 participate in the march.
The New York Observer has 50 portraits of people who have been in on the action in New York City. The Nation‘s Greg Mitchell is blogging “Occupy USA” developments daily. The Guardian is also producing ongoing coverage.
- Live footage of Zuccotti Park can be found at the protest epicenter’s viral webstream, Global Revolution.
- The #occupywallstreet hashtag (as well as #ows and #occupywallst) has been the main engine on Twitter.
- OccupyTogether.org supplies a range of DIY downloadable posters.
- There is an Occupy Wall Street social app called The Vibe, which allows demonstrators to communicate anonymously.
- An Occupy Wall Street publication was launched on Kickstarter, originally asking for $12,000 in seed money to get the publication rolling. The project surpassed its funding goal and has now raised over $40,000.
- A Tumblr account, We Are the 99%, allows users to post personal anecdotes and stories about why they consider themselves part of the economically disaffected majority.