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Occupy Wall Street Protests Go Global 944

Posted by Soulskill
from the when-in-rome-do-as-the-romans-do-except-burning-cars dept.
Hugh Pickens writes "Tens of thousands of people around the world took to the streets Saturday to reiterate their anger at the global financial system, corporate greed and government cutbacks, with rallies held in more than 900 cities in Europe, Africa and Asia. 'United in one voice, we will let politicians, and the financial elites they serve, know it is up to us, the people, to decide our future,' said organizers of the global demonstration. The demonstrations by the disaffected coincided with the Group of 20 meeting in Paris, where finance ministers and central bankers from major economies were holding talks on the debt and deficit crises afflicting many Western countries. Crowds around the world were largely peaceful, but the demonstration in Rome turned violent as clashes in the Italian capital left dozens injured, including several police officers. In London, WikiLeaks leader Julian Assange made a dramatic appearance, bursting through the police lines just after 2:30pm, accompanied by scores of supporters. He climbed the cathedral steps near St. Paul's to condemn 'greed' and 'corruption,' and attacked the City of London, accusing its financiers of money laundering and tax avoidance."
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Occupy Wall Street Protests Go Global

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  • Quick Hitsory Lesson (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:21AM (#37729654)

    Only around 20% of the population were sided against the king during the time America was being formed.

    Why is that relevant? Well it just means that it takes a lot less people than you think to get things rolling.

    • by Opportunist (166417) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:47AM (#37729738)

      But it takes even fewer people to keep the status quo. Less than 5% of the population of Nazi Germany were die-hard Nazis.

      • by ElectricTurtle (1171201) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:45AM (#37730076)
        You are desperately ignorant of history if you think that that Nazism was 'status quo' to any significant stretch of German history. Nazism was a revolutionary movement that overthrew the Weimar Republic and cleared away the last vestiges of power held by the German aristocracy. They instituted huge swaths of legislative change at every level and in every corner of life in Germany. And while many of these laws were indeed draconian measures intended to strengthen the power of the state, people allow crimes like the holocaust to blind them to the fact that this was still a government of men who wanted to believe they were benefiting their country in some way, and in fact many positive reforms were instituted as well.
    • by couchslug (175151)

      They also had to waste a lot of Tories and chase away the rest.

      No bad thing but a small barrier nonetheless.

  • by Deviant (1501) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:27AM (#37729676)

    After reading this article http://www.businessinsider.com/what-wall-street-protesters-are-so-angry-about-2011-10 [businessinsider.com] and seeing Inside Job http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzrBurlJUNk [youtube.com] I am tempted to join them!

    • by jhoegl (638955) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:36AM (#37729694)
      Tempted? If you are lower or middle class and ever have any hope of enjoying life when you are of retiring age, you better join them.

      Otherwise, just throw your money down a rabbit hole.
      • by Leebert (1694) * on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:45AM (#37730078)

        If you are lower or middle class and ever have any hope of enjoying life when you are of retiring age, you better join them.

        Why exactly is that? Sitting around in a park won't change anything. In the US, we have a perfectly functional system for overthrowing the government on a periodic basis: voting. You want *actual* change, then actively work to vote out the current regime. That generally means doing your part to convince at least your family and friends of your position. Few if any will be convinced to change their vote just because some people are camped out near Wall Street, and the politicians will ignore you unless you actually threaten their ability to be re-elected (see original point).

        • by chill (34294) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @10:04AM (#37730208) Journal

          Because even though Congress has an approval rating of less than 20%, it is always all the OTHER members who are causing the problem. Not MY Congressman/Senator. At least, that seems to be the way the voting goes.

          The deck is stacked in favor of incumbents. In both Houses -- at least in the United States -- power comes from which committees you are on or Chair. Those are divvied up by seniority. The longer you are in, the more power you have.

          That is a big selling point during a campaign. "Sure, I'm scum. But I bring home the bacon and I've been in long enough that I get my voice -- your voice -- heard. Vote me out and it'll take decades before any real projects come back to this district."

          • by Leebert (1694) *

            The *why* wasn't my point. I was rejecting the implication that the only way to fix this is to camp out in a park. ("If you are lower or middle class and ever have any hope of enjoying life when you are of retiring age, you better join them.") My point is that they only way to fix this (at least, within our current legal framework) is to fix the vote. Protests *might* help with that, but saying that not joining in the protest means you have no hope of enjoying life at retirement age is nonsense.

        • by TheGratefulNet (143330) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @12:15PM (#37731056)

          with such a low uid you should know better.

          voting is broken in the US. coke or pepsi? yeah, real choice.

          sorry dude but you are signing the song that keeps us dumb. 'vote vote vote! for change'. bullshit. a guy in a suit and a guy in a suit are NOT your friends, now.

          voting is broken.

          what's the next thing up from that? I forget.

          • by Leebert (1694) * on Sunday October 16, 2011 @01:03PM (#37731418)

            voting is broken.

            I argue that it's the PEOPLE who are irreparably broken, and voting is functioning just fine. We get exactly what we vote for; no one gets installed into office who wasn't voted in, and no one stays in office who has been voted out.

            That said, let's allow for the premise that I'm some idiot who doesn't understand the issues. What, then is the goal of these sorts of protests? Outside of voting, the only other way to really change government is a violent overthrow. That won't work in this case; if people won't vote in their own self-interests, they sure as hell won't FIGHT in their own self-interests.

            To me, the only way to fix this mess is changing the way people vote. It's a damn difficult proposition; that's why we're in the mess we're in! If it were easy to change, it would already have been done.

            You *might* be able to convince me in some way that the awareness the protesters raise will change how we spend and invest our money, thus reducing corporate America's influence on politics. But I think you'll have a far more difficult time convincing people to vote differently than change their cushy lifestyles. (I loves me my Starbucks...)

            So what, then? What, aside from pushing people to voting or violent overthrow, is the point? I ask this truly seeking enlightenment, because you seem to see something that I don't.

            with such a low uid you should know better.

            Eh, a low uid doesn't in any way convey intelligence or experience; it just means that I needed to sign up in order to customize my slashboxes.

            • by quarterbuck (1268694) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:30PM (#37734612)
              I agree somewhat with what you say but disagree with the idea that sitting around in a park won't change anything. All you have to do is to look up recent south African or slightly older Indian history. Heck, even in America a woman sitting in a bus changed a lot of things.
              The idea that you can only change things by voting or by violent overthrow is simplistic. It is also possible to influence how people vote. For example: Nelson Mandela started out with the idea of violent overthrow of govt. (since voting was not a real option), then he moved on to sitting in his jail cell and protesting until the ruling class gave up. And that caused real change -- S. Africa has not had a serious race riot or violence because their leader renounced it. Or in the case of Gandhi, he pretty much convinced his nation (which early on did not care) that the British were a bad idea by repeatedly getting beaten up or thrown in jail for non-violent protests.
              This is the age old idea of marketing -- you have to convince the "user" that he needs your product even if the user would not have picked it out from a self-made list of "needs". I believe sitting around in a park may convince some of the electorate that some sort of change is required.
            • by Internetuser1248 (1787630) on Monday October 17, 2011 @06:02AM (#37736752)
              You are ignoring the colossal gap between what people vote for and what people want. Take some examples of what the protesters want:
              Financial transaction tax
              accountability for financial executives
              closing of corporate tax loopholes
              To name just a few, now tell me who I should vote for that will pass these measures...

              On the other hand, mass protests send a clear message about what people want, and pressures individual congressional and senatorial candidates to address those concerns while on the campaign trail. Either they will lie, or they will support such measures. Claiming that voting is the only democratic duty of the citizen, and/or the only way he/she can cause change, is dead wrong, you have to shift the debate towards the questions that matter to you, you have to make it clear that the candidate who promises the most things you want will get your vote. The fact that the US has a 2 (1.2) party system makes this especially difficult as the democrats can easily say "well the republicans are going to make more tax loopholes, so you have no choice but to vote for us and we don't promise to close any". In countries with a parliamentary system however, protesting and demonstrating is a clear civic duty and has a significant effect on politics.
    • by omar.sahal (687649) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:47AM (#37729744) Homepage Journal
      It gets worse the more you study it. The sub prime housing issue was fraud plain and simple. We then had to pay for this when the assets (read bad debts) went bad. We also have to help the banks with their debts to Greece, Ireland and co, another bailout. So banks can't loose their money we have to give it to Greece, Ireland etc. This is then administered by IMF, ECB etc who help banks pillage countries, This money does not help the people of those lands, it harms them, so that when their economy worsens assets can be picked up cheap by banks, banks debts are paid and there future profits are guaranteed at our expense. It just goes on and on, the big question is will our governments keep bailing them out until our own currencies are ruined?
      Don't think that The US, Great Britain etc are safe, we have big issues our selves.
    • by complete loony (663508) <Jeremy.LakemanNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Sunday October 16, 2011 @10:05AM (#37730216)

      I recommend reading the work of Steve Keen, an academic economist who went public in 2005 predicting this crisis. He's just published his second edition of "Debunking Economics" a text that systematically destroys the very foundations of "neoclassical" economics. He's also been working on dynamic modelling of the economy that has the potential to actually be useful.

      Our lives are going to suck until all the debt our banks created is destroyed. There's no way we can afford to pay it all back, that would cripple the global economy for the next 30 years. Instead these debts should simply be abolished.

      Unfortunately our governments don't have the will, or the know how, to actually fix things.

  • by unity100 (970058) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:28AM (#37729680) Homepage Journal
    200,000 + people in page, 120 k+ are currently talking about it. its bigger than most politicians' pages. Support is really global, and there are people from all walks of life. Albeit, of course, people who have their dinners in monaco.

    https://www.facebook.com/OccupyWallSt [facebook.com]
  • by omar.sahal (687649) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:33AM (#37729686) Homepage Journal
    First hand reports [andyworthington.co.uk] of whats going on in London and some tactics used to snuff out demo
  • by geekopus (130194) <geekopus@[ ]oo.com ['yah' in gap]> on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:35AM (#37729690)

    I'd love to see something better, but the rhetoric sounds a WHOLE lot like the Bolshevik revolution in Russia. How'd that work out?

    In fact, as often as it's been tried, none of [wikipedia.org] them have [wikipedia.org] worked out [wikipedia.org].

    Listen, I understand that you're mad, but you have to provide a solid alternative. Those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it, and no matter how badly you want something to not be so, still it remains. These revolutions have a history of plunging their respective people into the dark ages.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:46AM (#37729732)

      you have to provide a solid alternative.

      Get the corporate money and lobbyists out of Government. Return democracy to the 99%.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:51AM (#37729760)

      Stop the fear mongering. The protesters simply want to return to sanity. Between the New Deal and the beginning of Voodoo Economics capital was used to produce actual goods instead of financial bubbles. Why not simply return that? Other main concerns are the inefficient privatized health-care and education system. Changing to a european style public system would solve this. Finally, most of the American infrastructure is crumbling while people are unemployed, why not fix two problems at the same time?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by JaredOfEuropa (526365)
        "The protesters want" is a meaningless phrase at this point. There are now many groups of "professional" protesters joining the fray, including environmentalists, chem-trail nutcases, anarchists, hard-core socialists... and each group brings its own agenda. Then there's the group that doesn't even really understand what they are protesting for.

        I agree that we need to return to sanity. Perhaps protests like these are a first step, but if I listen to the solutions proposed by some of these people, I thi
      • by GreatBunzinni (642500) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @10:04AM (#37730212)

        This is not true. Here in my country the "Occupy .+ street" event was lead by the local communist party, and among the statements some participants said that that protest was organized because "capitalism was dead, and we are here to bury it". The protest isn't a big homogeneous mass, and there are established political organizations which are opportunistically trying to take advantage of this to impose their agenda. So, although it is in everyone's best interests to jumpstart some change, we should pay attention to what change some want to impose. After all, the change they are trying to impose may not be in our best interests.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:52AM (#37729772)

      A political system where corporations do not have a seat at the table? A justice system where we get to see the rich and powerful do the perp walk more often? A monetary system that doesn't foster bubbles?

    • by omar.sahal (687649) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:54AM (#37729782) Homepage Journal

      provide a solid alternative.

      How abut charging bankers with the crimes they have committed.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      I think the outlines of a convincing alternative are coming into view.

      The sources of the worlds current problems are complicated and messy. But there are two big themes.

      One is that democracy increasingly feels undemocratic, a hobsons choice between two nearly identical sets of alternatives. Party democracy was for the longest time the only reasonable way of doing things, but modern technology offers us the potential for something better, namely delegated voting [google.com]. By allowing people to automatically delegate

    • by Teun (17872) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:36AM (#37730010) Homepage
      The alternative is there, you just need some historical perspective and respect the common man.

      I won't say the 70s and 80s of the past century didn't have their own problems but at least in Europe we all had a chance to a decent life without a hazy group of top brass manipulating politics and thus legislation trying to keep it all to themselves.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:45AM (#37729730)

    Spanish protests go global. Spanished followed the Arab Srping, then there were protests in many cities in Europe, then Israel, then it was the US, and now the whole world. Don't be that stupid centered.

    • by pjt33 (739471) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:03AM (#37729846)

      That what I was thinking. The indignados who occupied Sol on the 15th of May didn't choose to protest on the 15th of October because of something which started in New York in September.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      Protests started in Greece earlier than in Spain. Not to mention Iceland.
      In fact the US are just the last ones joining this global movement. But be welcome, fellows!

    • by polymeris (902231) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @04:37PM (#37732998)

      Umm, yes. To say that it is the US movement that went global is indeed a bit US-centric.
      But, while the indignados movement is one of the strongest and a great inspiration for the rest of the world, Greece (May 2010), Tunisia (Oct 2010), Libya & Baharain (Feb 2011), Chile (May 2011), and probably a lot others I don't remember, started sooner. "World 2011 (201X?) protests" would be a better label by now.

  • by Tasha26 (1613349) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:48AM (#37729746) Homepage
    According to this map [dailykos.com], they are scattered everywhere. I wonder how much more effective it'd be if the 99% really dropped in on Wall Street and got their money back?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:53AM (#37729776)

    I think 20 years of skewing the system to favor the wealthy while neglecting the majority is finally starting to sink in. It's not that people can't be rich, that there is anything wrong with being rich, or that there is something wrong with capitalism generally. In principle these things are all fine. It is the way that it has been twisted so that every time an economic issue comes up, the majority of people end up paying (bailouts, wage cuts, etc.) while the people at the top manage to skim off an ever-widening fraction. Regular wages barely keep up with inflation or even decline. We're told companies have to remain competitive, which is true, but if that's the case then why have CEO salaries climbed *far* in excess of inflation over the last 2 decades whether there's an upturn in the economy or a downturn? Meanwhile there is a race to the bottom in terms of corporate taxes world-wide, with countries like Ireland luring companies there with exceptionally low rates, then practically going bankrupt the moment there is an economic downturn. Personal taxes go down, but it's a game where the very wealthy get theirs reduced far more than the average Joe. Between corporate tax decreases and disproportionate tax cuts or tax systems that favor the wealthy (capital gains), the middle and lower class ends up shouldering an ever-larger fraction of the total tax burden to run government services, which get cut anyway. Everyone is expected to tolerate "austerity" measures due to a screwed-up financial system that wasn't their fault. Governments cut taxes before paying down debts when times are good (you're supposed to run a surplus in the good times to get rid of the debts so you are ready for the next economic cycle instead of hitting borrowing limits, and so you aren't stealing money from the next generation). The list of grievances is long.

    Look, I like capitalism. Like democracy, it's the least-bad economic system that I think we have. But the simple fact is, this was a grand experiment in "trickle-down" economics. Early on, the results were kind of fuzzy, but the result is now becoming clear to everyone: you can't shaft the majority of workers for a generation and expect that things are going to be fine economically. You also can't say you are running a democracy while favoring the wealthy at every possible opportunity. You can't let money buy such strong influence in politics that ordinary people start believing their vote is worthless. You can't do these things for so long and expect that the system is going to remain sustainable.

    Unless the rich and powerful eventually want to live in medieval-style castles to keep the common peasants out, they're going to have to realize that they need to pay more into the society that they live in, and focus a little less on their own individual wealth. They need to care more about the future of society as a whole, and bring things back to a more sustainable, balanced system like we used to have in western democracies and economies. This is the wake-up call. Heed it, like a democracy is supposed to do when its people speak up, and things will be okay. Ignore it at your peril.

    • ."that there is anything wrong with being rich, or that there is something wrong with capitalism generally..."

      Capitalism naturally leads to this outcome because there is no check on how much you can accumulate and no democratic control over pricing and resources. There is no ideal capitalism that has existed in some fairy fairy land in your head.

      This is the natural outcome of capitalism _in the real world_ the evidence is more then abundant.

  • by krygny (473134) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @08:56AM (#37729794)

    What do the penguins know that the rest of us don't?

  • Daniel Shay, anyone? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:06AM (#37729854)

    Anyone else reminded of Shay's Rebellion? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shays'_Rebellion [wikipedia.org]

  • by Culture20 (968837) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:18AM (#37729906)
    Now they're outsourcing the protesters! Preemptive apologies to rest of the world.
  • Terra currency (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Twinbee (767046) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:44AM (#37730066) Homepage

    Slightly on topic: Does anyone here have any opinion over the Terra - a common world currency that is based on the top 10 or so produce of the world (gold, corn, oil etc.), and so is much more stable and less prone to inflation. I saw it a couple of days ago, and I can't help but feel it would save trillions in efficiency and help benefit the world.

    Whitepaper here:
    http://www.terratrc.org/PDF/Terra_WhitePaper_2.27.04.pdf [terratrc.org]

  • by ErichTheRed (39327) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:46AM (#37730088)

    I've been watching these protests, interested in seeing what might come out of them. Unfortunately, no one has stepped out and tried to distill all the chaos down to simple talking points that the masses can understand. Left-wing protestors have a much higher barrier to overcome to be taken seriously. The right wing pundits, Tea Party guys, etc. seem to understand this and keep their rantings simple. They appeal to a wide swath of the country by doing that -- it's easy to convince a plumber that the Evil Government is preventing them from becoming a hugely successful entrepreneur because they're "stealing" his tax dollars. That's where I think a lot of the non-rich right wingers have their thinking misplaced -- they're inadvertently supporting business owners who turn around and make average peoples' lives miserable.

    My take on this whole thing is as follows. I don't want communism, anarchy or the guillotining of investment bankers. What I do want is the social contract that companies used to have with their workers put back in place. The world is going to get even more divisive as automation and cheap labor start taking away all those nice safe service jobs. I like the model of Germany and the Scandinavian countries. There are plenty of business owners in those countries who are successful and get rich, but they seem to have a perspective and deal with the burden of paying taxes to support the rest of society. This is similar to the 50s-style social contracts many employers had -- hard work and loyalty were rewarded with a commensurate income ladder, paid health insurance, and paid retirement.

    Think about it this way -- you're probably well-educated, worked hard to get where you are, and most people have health insurance, a nice stable job, good income and a few possessions. What makes you think that businesses are always going to need network administrators, Java programmers and other IT people? We're already seeing evidence that businesses would rather deal with sub-par service and skeleton staffs...and most people are a couple of paychecks away from being totally broke short of their retirement funds.

    I see why everyone's mad at Wall Street though -- a lot of the reason that social contract went away in the first place is a constant demand for corporate earnings regardless of economic conditions.

    If I were leading this thing, I think my simple, Tea Party-style talking points would be as follows:
    1. Make everyone pay their fair share of taxes. Don't fall for executives' scare tactics about moving to China -- they're going to do that anyway.
    2. To ensure this tax money gets spent wisely, limit corporate influence on the political system. It's amazing how quickly universal health insurance could be funded once some of these tax loopholes are removed.
    3. Reduce the hyper-focus on the financial markets. Get individual retirement investors out of the market and into something safer like a pension or annuity. Let average people have a stable retirement, but encourage investment on their own if they want. Let companies breathe for a couple of quarters so they can actually plow money back into things that will produce results further down the road.

    These things would resonate with average Americans, and it would be very hard for the right wing pundits to call me a dirty hippie if I came to the table with a good set of arguments.

    • by Animats (122034) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @02:31PM (#37732210) Homepage

      I've been watching these protests, interested in seeing what might come out of them. Unfortunately, no one has stepped out and tried to distill all the chaos down to simple talking points that the masses can understand.

      The Occupy Wall Street demands are starting to focus. [occupywallst.org] They're all quite reasonable. This is a revolutionary movement that wants to pass HR 1489, the "Return to Prudent Banking Act". That's something that real conservatives ought to be supporting. It's about returning to the system that worked from 1933 to 1999, where banks had to stay out of the stock market and brokerages couldn't accept deposits. This separation prevented trouble on Wall Street from taking down banks.

      The Occupy Wall Street movement wants the Department of Justice to get tough on crime on Wall Street. That, too, is completely in line with conservative tradition. They want a tougher Securities and Exchange Commission and restrictions on campaign spending. None of this is even slightly radical.

      Everything on that list would have been supported by President Eisenhower, arguably the best Republican president in the last century. (Eisenhower delivered peace and prosperity while facing down the Soviet threat, which was quite real back then. He made it look easy; he'd often knock off around 3PM and go play golf. Of course, he'd already been in charge of winning WWII in Europe; compared to that, the presidency was a vacation. His greatest skill was that he could pick the right subordinate for the job and keep them on mission. He managed both Patton and Montgomery effectively during WWII.)

      The Republicans have lost their way. (Look at the collection of losers and weirdos running for the Republican presidential nomination.) Republican moderates should be supporting Occupy Wall Street.

  • by DMJC (682799) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @09:50AM (#37730118)
    Why is there no political system anywhere where the campaigns are funded by a flat levy, and ALL levels of government have equal elections where union and private donations, as well as politician's OWN FINANCES are banned from participating? Each politician gets a set amount equal to all the other candidates with which they can campaign with, and MANDATED/paid media time, and BAN private political advertising. Get rid of these douchebag interest groups from politics they have no place. Politicians shouldn't be allowed to pool their money together into party platforms either. If 50 people across electorates want to campaign for the same thing they should have to each spend out of their allowances individually to get their message out, so 50 conservative candidate ads, not 1 expensive ad running all the time for the conservative party. Anyone running against them should have the chance to do the same. This system that currently exists serves only the rich and powerful and the union bosses that are slaves to them. Kill the financial incentive to suck up to the big end of town and to businesses and make the bastards actually serve the public interest. Everyone knows this is the only way to go, it's high time people stood up for it and made it happen.
    • by Animats (122034) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @02:04PM (#37732010) Homepage

      "Why is there no political system anywhere where the campaigns are funded by a flat levy, and ALL levels of government have equal elections where union and private donations, as well as politician's OWN FINANCES are banned from participating?"

      There are. France [loc.gov] runs elections that way. "Campaign finance is strictly regulated. All forms of paid commercial advertisements through the press or by any audiovisual means are prohibited during the three months preceding the election. Instead, political advertisements are aired free of charge on an equal basis for all of the candidates on national television channels and radio stations during the official campaign."

      It really works that way. French campaigns are short and intense. I've been in Paris for one. The official poster boards go up in sets, one board for each candidate, and the candidates poster boards go on them. The minor and major candidates get equal billing. Everybody makes their pitch on TV in their allotted time slots, and it's discussed to death in Le Monde and ranted about in Libe. Then the citizens vote. France uses a two-round presidential election; if nobody gets an absolute majority on round 1, there's a runoff two weeks later.

  • by curmudgeon99 (1040054) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @10:18AM (#37730300)
    "First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." --Mahatma Gandhi. I have never been more proud of my fellow Americans than I am now with the Occupy Wall Street movement. You people on Wall Street, you corporate shills, hedgefund kiddies--your days are numbered. You have been able to buy politicians and get legislation that benefits you and no one else. The US voting population understands that Congress itself is full of millionaires. Yes, last I checked, we do live in a democracy. Much as I despise the Tea Party, they are one type of attack on your right side. The Occupy Wall Street movement--which is spreading like wildfire across the entire world--is an attack from the left. You may think you can mock, ridicule and marginalize the OWS movement but I am not so sure. Go ahead and mock, insinuate that it's all Soros and all of your other techniques. Unfortunately for you, the rest of us also went to college and grad school. We too read constantly, get up early in the morning to study our battle plans and plot our strategy. At first I too saw the lack of common purpose as a weakness. I wrote pieces that explained what I saw as the grievances. Then I heard that fine American genius Matt Taibbi--who wrote that Goldman Sachs is a "great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money"--point out that the lack of a common articulated set of goals and a designated single leader is a point of genius. Just because the OWS movement does not articulate their goals does not mean they don't have goals and designs. And with no stated goals, they are a moving target with a thousand goals. With no central leader, there is no one for Wall Street to corrupt and co-opt. This is classic closed cell behavior as practiced by subversive groups for centuries. Wall Street always attacks like this with money. But without a leader to corrupt, without a single defined list of goals to refute, the OWS movement is a moving target, chimeric and powerful. Go on ridiculing them. We are not going away. If we find that our leaders, even our beloved President Obama, don't react to our wishes, they will be replaced. And I promise you, if we need to replace even President Obama, you will like his successor even less. You Republicans plan to nominate Mitt Romney, he of Bain Capital who slashed jobs, drained equity and walked off with millions? Bring it on! I relish the chance to attack that fat cat. Bring it on. Don't start anything you can't finish. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Merrill-Lynch, Bank of America and Citigroup--to say nothing of all the hedge funds with your poster boy Raj Rajaratnam--you started something you can't finish. You and your millions are no match for our power. We know where you live, we know where you work and where you play. We're coming for you. You had better be afraid, very afraid.
  • Break up the banks (Score:4, Insightful)

    by sp3d2orbit (81173) on Sunday October 16, 2011 @11:02AM (#37730586)

    Those banks that are "too big to fail" need to be split into smaller pieces that do not represent a systematic threat.

    The government has split up AT&T in the 1970s, Standard Oil before that and had anti monopoly laws in place that should be used to prevent another bailout.

Wernher von Braun settled for a V-2 when he coulda had a V-8.

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