Saturday, October 01, 2011
Photos/Videos: Occupy Albuquerque in Solidarity With Occupy Wall Street
Today more than 400 members of The 99% of us who aren't on the plutocratic gravy train were arrested crossing Brooklyn Bridge in connection with the ongoing Occupy Wall Street demonstrations in New York City. A number of marchers and observers claim those arrested essentially were lured onto the bridge roadway by police specifically so they could be trapped between lengths of orange plastic fencing and arrested for trespassing.
I guess Mayor Bloomberg is beginning to tire of the Occupy Wall Street folks as 14 days of their diverse, nonviolent and sometimes exotic presence in Zuccotti Park and elsewhere in the city begins to fray the nerves of the 1% of city dwellers who like the worker bee classes to be seen and not heard as they go about waiting on their masters. Just yesterday, Mayor Bloomberg felt compelled to chastise the protestors for picking on bankers and stock brokers who are "struggling to make ends meet." I'm not kidding. He insisted people are focusing too much on the causes of the financial crisis and that we need to be nicer to the banking industry so that it starts lending again. He concluded by saying that we are “blaming the wrong people” by “blaming the banks” for the recession.
Chanters. Driving past some protesters.
Energized Crowd in Albuquerque
Meanwhile about 500 more of The 99% assembled and walked between two locations -- near the US Bank building on Central Avenue SE as well as the Bank of the West -- as the Occupy Albuquerque protest kicked off in solidarity with the action in New York City. Just check out the signs in the photos and videos to understand what prompted folks to turn out on a beautiful Saturday morning during Balloon Fiesta to make a stand. The time has finally come today when more and more people are ready to proclaim, "We just won't take it anymore!"
Similar occupations were in progress or being planned for cities and towns (including Santa Fe) across the nation -- and the world -- as momentum continues to grow for the people's movement. More and more are inspired and excited about confronting the forces that are hard at work undermining our freedoms to benefit the 1% of plutocrats who think they now own the nation -- and who intend to operate it as a nasty, greedy oligarchy at the beck and call of Wall Street, and global banking, financial and corporate interests.
City Councilor Rey Garduno comments on demonstration
"Where do we go from here? Chaos or community?"
Nobody knows quite yet, but it's clear that many abused and ripped off residents of the Planet Earth are finally awakening from their slumbers, their denial and/or their paralyzing cynicism to admit what's really going on with the corporate takeover of our governments and resources, and gathering to brainstorm about a situation that gets worse every day for the 99% of the population whose labors, resources and talents are essentially being stolen to support the consumerist addictions of the other 1%.
As Cornell West told Amy Goodman yesterday:
Well, I think we’ve got to keep the momentum going because it’s impossible to translate the issue of the greed of Wall Street into one demand, or two demands. We’re talking about a democratic awakening. We’re talking about raising political consciousness, so it spills over; all parts of the country so people can begin to see what’s going on through a different set of lens.
And then you begin to highlight what the more detailed demands would be, because in the end we’re really talking about what Martin King would call a revolution; a transfer of power from oligarchs to every day people of all colors, and that is a step-by-step process. It’s a democratic process, it’s a non-violent process, but it is a revolution, because these oligarchs have been transferring wealth from poor and working people at a very intense rate in the last 30 years, and getting away with it, and then still smiling in our faces and telling us it’s our fault. That’s a lie, and this beautiful group is a testimony to that being a lie.
When you get the makings of a U.S. autumn responding to the Arab Spring, and is growing and growing -- I hope it spills over to San Francisco and Chicago and Miami and Phoenix, Arizona, with our brown brothers and sisters, hits our poor white brothers and sisters in Appalachia -- so. it begins to coalesce. And I tell you, it is sublime to see all the different colors, all the different genders, all the different sexual orientations and different cultures, all together here in Liberty Plaza; there’s no doubt about it.
Cisco Padilla comments. Greedy pig diorama!
Goals and Principles
So what are the preliminary goals of the occupations? It's up to each of the participants to join what is being called a "general assembly" in order to come up with proposed principles, goals and strategies and come to a consensus. These can vary widely depending on the makeup and interests of the occupation group, and can be as abstract or specific as the group desires. The main goal of the occupations at this point is to get people talking with one another about what's really going on with our economy of late, as well as interacting and connecting so that there's a good chance they'll continue to participate with one another in the future and perhaps even reach out to new people.
Exactly what that future of these occupations will be isn't known yet, but the hope is that momentum for taking on the damaging status quo will continue to grow, and that the goals and actions of the groups will develop organically from the ground up instead of from some leader on down. More will be revealed in the coming days and weeks as a new kind of protest movement takes shape and refines its targets.
In the meantime, the group October2011.org, which is organizing an occupation of Freedom Plaza in DC that starts on October 6, has come up with these principles. They're a good start:
- Tax the rich and corporations
- End the wars, bring the troops home, cut military spending
- Protect the social safety net, strengthen Social Security and improved Medicare for all
- End corporate welfare for oil companies and other big business interests
- Transition to a clean energy economy, reverse environmental degradation
- Protect worker rights including collective bargaining, create jobs and raise wages
- Get money out of politics.
Photos and videos on this post by M.E. Broderick. Additional photos and videos of Occupy Albuquerque can be found here. If you've got some, please put a link to them in the comments thread of this post.
Stop Belittling this beautiful place we live!
Posted by: Brooke | Oct 5, 2011 9:56:45 AM
Belittling this place? How is that? A strong stand for the people shows this place in a great light as a enlightened and forward thinking city!
Posted by: Jackie | Oct 5, 2011 1:13:41 PM