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United States Politics

NYPD Dismantling Occupy Wall Street Encampment 933

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the ministry-of-truth-declares-america-not-a-police-state dept.
First time accepted submitter Red_Chaos1 was the first to write with news that, as of around 06:30 UTC, the NYPD appears to have begun removing the encampment of Occupy Wall Street. At 06:34 UTC the Mayor's office issued a tweet declaring: "Occupants of Zuccotti should temporarily leave and remove tents and tarps. Protesters can return after the park is cleared." Around 07:15 UTC the first of several large dumpsters were deposited and the police began throwing tents and other debris into it. Reports also indicate that a Long Range Acoustic Device is on the premises. The police are using helicopters and physical barriers to prevent news coverage, but the Occupiers are streaming the events (alternative stream; #occupywallstreet on irc.indymedia.org is also rather active for those who don't fancy flash or twitter.) As of 09:15 or so, the situation according to those near NYC is that the park has more or less been cleared.
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NYPD Dismantling Occupy Wall Street Encampment

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  • by mwvdlee (775178) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @03:58AM (#38056910) Homepage

    I haven't particularly warm-hearted feelings for the Occupy hipsters, but...

    The police are using helicopters and physical barriers to prevent news coverage

    Seems a bit excessive and somewhat dubious.

    • by GPLHost-Thomas (1330431) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:03AM (#38056926)
      You think it's "a bit excessive"? Hell, in what kind of country news coverage is forbidden? Next time I'll hear about critics to China, I'll talk about this event!!!
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        You think it's "a bit excessive"? Hell, in what kind of country news coverage is forbidden?

        Or maybe you could try turning on the TV, and observe that there is no interruption to the news coverage, and that particular sentence was supplied without any source or citation because it's complete and utter bullshit.

        You might also be interested in looking up the definition of the word temporary . It might also help you not look like a complete fucking retard if you paid attention to the phrase : Protesters can return after the park is cleared.

        You might also want to pay particular attention to the f

        • by PopeRatzo (965947) * on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @09:04AM (#38058564) Homepage Journal

          You might also want to pay particular attention to the fact that this is private property they are squatting on, not a public park.

          Not exactly.

          The company that built the adjoining building wanted to make it taller, which violated certain city codes. In order to get a variance, they had to agree to provide and maintain a public space. In essence, create a public park.

          The actual deed to the land belongs to the company, but there is language saying that the company can never prevent public access. The reason the deed was kept with the company instead of the city is to help enforce the covenant that it would be the company that does all of the maintenance of the park.

          If you care to look it up, there have been good articles about this in the Wall St Journal and New York Times.

        • by apcullen (2504324) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @10:16AM (#38059190)
          I just watched the news conference. I'm wondering what the anonymous coward is smoking? The mayor explicitly said that reporters were kept out of the park "for their own protection". Isn't that interruption of news coverage? How is preventing reporters from filming the various arrests that went on not interruption of news coverage? How is taking people's tents and destroying them in any way legal? And they mayor said that there "may be" some kind of court order from some judge somewhere-- no details at all were provided (maybe they're still shopping around for a judge who can be bought?) -- that might prevent people from returning to the park.
        • by sl4shd0rk (755837) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @10:54AM (#38059568)

          > It might also help you not look like a complete fucking retard if you paid attention to the
          > phrase : Protesters can return after the park is cleared.

          You're only reading half the story. They are not allowed to bring anything back in after the park is "cleared".
          http://i.imgur.com/TMxmg.jpg [imgur.com]

          It's a clear attempt to sabotage the entire right to assemble/protest.

          As far as the "private property" argument, something about that sounds dubious. If it were a private corp who owned prime space in downtown new york you can damn betcha it would have apartments stacked up as far and wide as legally possible.

          A judge even thinks so this morning too.
          https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/266582-order-re-liberty-park/ [documentcloud.org]

    • by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:16AM (#38056996)
      The only reason the protestors are in the park is because the police made it clear they'll arrest anyone who dares to actually protest near wall street. The park is designated a 'free speech zone' because it's far enough out of the way that no-one will see them.
    • by X.25 (255792) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:41AM (#38057116)

      I haven't particularly warm-hearted feelings for the Occupy hipsters, but...

      The police are using helicopters and physical barriers to prevent news coverage

      Seems a bit excessive and somewhat dubious.

      Seems like that's happening in China. Or Soviet Russia.

      Where is this happening, again?

      • by ultranova (717540) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:50AM (#38057522)

        Seems like that's happening in China. Or Soviet Russia.

        The main difference between China and the US is that the Chinese economy is growing.

        The main difference between the Soviet Union and the US was that the SU had social security.

    • by niftydude (1745144) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:34AM (#38057420)

      Seems a bit excessive and somewhat dubious.

      I don't want to Godwin this thread - however, it seems that the NYPD has seized the 5000+ book donated library, and thrown all those books in a dumpster.

      Excessive is an understatement

  • by x14n (935233) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:03AM (#38056924) Homepage
    http://www.ustream.tv/TheOther99 [ustream.tv]

    Major media helicopters have been forced out of the air by NYPD. Lots of fresh news on twitter:
    https://twitter.com/#!/search?q=%23occupywallstreet

    NYPD Police scanner here:
    http://www.radioreference.com/apps/audio/?action=wp&feedId=8905

    NYPD switchboard isn't taking any more calls:
    http://www.nyc.gov/html/nypd/html/home/contact_information.shtml [nyc.gov]
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:07AM (#38056936)

    If this is right and legal and just, why wait until 1am to do it? Why? And why bar press? And why the hell didn't you just leave them alone in the first place, ppl would be like: "ppl in the park, protesting, want something" and then "next". But instead, it's sure to backfire. People want to believe the stuff they were taught in elementary school about freedom, etc. *shrugs*

    • by Hazel Bergeron (2015538) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:14AM (#38056976) Journal

      The USSR was up front about the limits it put on freedom. The US understood that most people are ignored so it's OK to let them mouth off until they're actually listened to, at which point you abuse and restrict them.

      The USSR also had job and housing security and good urban worker treatment. The developing system of internal identity checks and consequent restrictions on movement made it hard for all but the system faithful to gain the best positions in these cities, however. As in the USSR.

      • by YesIAmAScript (886271) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:07AM (#38057270)

        The USSR was up front about the limits it put on freedom.

        No they weren't, the restrictions were enforced by fear and knocks on the door followed by disappearances. The USSR, much like China today claimed they were open and free. But woe to those who tried to test the limits of that.

        • No it wasn't (Score:5, Interesting)

          by SmallFurryCreature (593017) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:35AM (#38057430) Journal

          Neither was nazi germany all that bad, as long as you weren't on the list. That is why such regimes can continue to exist, because the majority isn't on the list and it is very unhuman (but very human) to risk getting on a list for someone else who is on a list.

          That is why real heroes, like the people of Urk (fairly strict christians who had no real love or hate for jews but disliked people telling them what to do with a passion) are so fucking rare. It takes balls of steels to risk your safety for someone else. The fast majority did not. Ich habe es nicht gewust really means, I spend all my time looking the other way so it wouldn't happen to me.

          And the US has been caught out many many times recently and in the past in making people disappear. Check all the foreign detainment camps operated by the CIA. It is not even a secret anymore, except by those like you who choose to look the other way.

    • by http (589131) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:41AM (#38057470) Homepage Journal
      Was following this until feed gave out. Press were barred because part of the plan is to take all the equipment of all the arrested people and throw it into compacting dump trucks. Concealing this little detail failed, because every other person in NYC has a cell phone that can record video, and their attempts to block everyone on ground level were, shall we say, not fully thought through. Garbage truck drivers don't have the same "us vs. them" mentality of police officers, less discipline, and even less threat assessment training.
      It's an action that is (i) probably going to be extremely effective at preventing quite a lot of people from assembling anywhere again for more than eight hours, and (ii) should make every Libertarian brain go splodey.They're going to be hard pressed to reconcile "Taser the Hippies" and "Personal Property is SACRED" if ever this little detail gets widespread attention.
    • by argStyopa (232550) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @08:28AM (#38058310) Journal

      Because the goal of the police is to do their job with a minimum of risk to the public and property.

      The fact is that the easiest time to do this is the middle of the night. Not just easiest, but safest.

      People are more generally compliant if they're woken from a sound sleep. Further, even if they aren't asleep, they're tired, their thinking is muddled, and they are generally low on energy.

      Finally, all the 'day-trippers' have gone home. I have no idea of the proportion of hardcore overnighters vs. the ones just coming down each day, but obviously there are going to be far fewer bodies to deal with/object to whatever the police are doing.

      Of course, add to this that the street traffic is going to be lower at that time, and and the reduced number of 'innocent' bystanders - really there aren't many reasons NOT to do it at 1am or later.

      Barring the press? I don't really believe there's any way to see that except cynically, although perhaps it's justified again by public-safety concerns: if the press were widely covering the event, more likely more people are going to rush downtown to try to stop it.

      But to answer your earlier question: why don't they just leave them alone?
      As justified as their protests may be, they're simply NOT entitled to occupy private property forever, and do whatever they want there. Personally, if the owner of the property wants them gone, I'd have firehosed them away day one if they refused to move on.

      • by mistiry (1845474) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @10:47AM (#38059508)

        I was going to mod up, but then finished reading your post....

        I am so tired of this argument, let me make it a little easier for your obviously-limited intellect...

        This 'private property' is required to be open to the PUBLIC, 24/7. An agreement between the developer and the City lays these terms out - the developer was permitted to exceed the maximum height of a structure as defined in CITY ORDINANCES by creating and maintaining A PUBLIC PARK.

        So, you'd firehose everyone away? If that happens, does that mean it is OK to blow the top floors off their building? I mean, if the park is no longer public, they shouldn't be permitted to maintain a building THAT IS TALLER THAN THE VOTERS LAID OUT IN CITY ORDINANCES, should they?

        They (the building owners/developers) are already a special case, and are now trying to infringe on the rights of American citizens. They should have done more research into what opening a 'public place' means before signing on the dotted-line. They were happy to build up taller, funny how unhappy they become when forced to abide by the terms of the agreement that ALLOWED them to build taller.

        Breaking the law by restricting public access doesn't seem so fucking smart now, does it?

  • not too surprising (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:09AM (#38056946)

    It has been going on for a couple of months now.

    At this point there is no real goal other than 'dismantel the man'.

    If you guys are *serious* about staying there and doing something then get a GOAL. Something you can actually achieve. Other than camping out. Winter is coming and it gets cold there.

    If your goal is nothing more than being pissed off at the 'man'. Well that has been going on for many generations.

    You guys have the will to do something. You just have no idea what exactly you want. Also keep in mind you will need to convince the other 98% of us to think it is a good idea too. Some will join you because they like a 'good cause'. Others will oppose you just because you want to change things. But if all you can come up with is 'i hate the man'. Well, we all do whats your point?

    If you do not come up with a concrete goal soon the 'man' will get tired of your BS and toss you on your ear.

    • by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:19AM (#38057012)
      Do what? Politics isn't working very well - there are two parties and both serve the rich. There aren't the numbers or popular support for a revolution, and historically those things tend to turn out rather poorly anyway. The protestors want to do something, but there just isn't much they can.
  • 4th amendment issue? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Dogun (7502) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:11AM (#38056954) Homepage

    "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized."

    Throwing tents into dumpsters, without issuing a 'vacate or your property is forfeit' order seems like a clear violation to a non-lawyer.

    Lawyers? Or have I simply missed something requiring the demonstrators to disperse?

    • by Billly Gates (198444) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:54AM (#38057188) Journal

      No issue. They do not own the land. I spoke with a lady this weekend from the movement and it turned into an argument. Yes, it is public, but there is a reason we have houses. We own them and have no rights under the 4th amendment for property.

      It is publically owned, but the public has to vote to let someone use it. they are not 100% of the public as homeless people can not sleep legally at any public place in Las Vegas or Los Angeles. Same principle.

      You can be searched because you are breaking the law and you do not own the land. I can bet the mayor did get a judges permit anyway to be clean. A tent is not a home or a dwelling so they can do this.

  • by Sipper (462582) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:13AM (#38056962)

    By removing protesters, rather than having talks with them, the government is showing the occupy movement that they don't care. People should be allowed to practice peaceful protest, but it seems like the Occupy movement is being repeatedly shown that the government doesn't have a heart. First they were fenced in on the street. Then they were pepper sprayed. Then when it got cold, the fire department came and took away the generators providing heat. Now they're being forcibly removed from where they were camped.

    This is really sad, and I don't think any of these things were the correct response.

    • I've noticed that NYC has had the subtle guise of supporting them but selectively enforcing the law. Taking away the generators when it was *really* cold outside because they were a "fire hazard" was one of the standout things that comes to mind. I don't think anyone in the NYC government thought it would last as long as it already has and that these simple actions would break them.

      Now that they're dismantling the camps, we'll have to wait and see whether or not the city will actually "let them back in" as they've said they will. Personally I doubt it, but the people who are organizing this thing seem to have their heads on straight.

      Honestly, we haven't seen protests on this scale or for this duration since the Vietnam War. The difference is that we're in the age of social media - a time when any citizen can capture National Guard soldiers shooting at unarmed protestors, or police pepper spraying peaceful (but civilly disobedient) people. The city knows that it's walking a very fine line and if they take a misstep they're going to make things far, far worse for them.

      I knew this would happen eventually at NYC - this didn't surprise me at all. What *did* surprise me was closing the airspace to news helicopters and shutting down all but 1 subway line as well as a major bridge. *That* honestly frightens me very much. The amazing thing - and one of the reasons I'm so very appreciative to be in my mid-20s during the digital age - is that despite all traditional news media being cut out there's citizen journalists on the ground now recording video and streaming it live to the Internet.

      I feel a paradoxically equal amount of pride and revulsion at being an American tonight.

      • by Sipper (462582) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:59AM (#38057220)

        I've noticed that NYC has had the subtle guise of supporting them but selectively enforcing the law. Taking away the generators when it was *really* cold outside because they were a "fire hazard" was one of the standout things that comes to mind. I don't think anyone in the NYC government thought it would last as long as it already has and that these simple actions would break them.

        Now that they're dismantling the camps, we'll have to wait and see whether or not the city will actually "let them back in" as they've said they will. Personally I doubt it, but the people who are organizing this thing seem to have their heads on straight.

        Or if they do, I bet you the NYPD will make changes to the area to make it more inhospitable, and then "let them back in" to a much more highly controlled environment. I'm cynical as you can tell, because the government hasn't shown any kind of response that promotes trust.

        Honestly, we haven't seen protests on this scale or for this duration since the Vietnam War. The difference is that we're in the age of social media - a time when any citizen can capture National Guard soldiers shooting at unarmed protestors, or police pepper spraying peaceful (but civilly disobedient) people. The city knows that it's walking a very fine line and if they take a misstep they're going to make things far, far worse for them.

        I knew this would happen eventually at NYC - this didn't surprise me at all. What *did* surprise me was closing the airspace to news helicopters and shutting down all but 1 subway line as well as a major bridge. *That* honestly frightens me very much.

        Yes, the bridges and subways are "choke points". They shut the bridges down after 9/11 similarly.

        The amazing thing - and one of the reasons I'm so very appreciative to be in my mid-20s during the digital age - is that despite all traditional news media being cut out there's citizen journalists on the ground now recording video and streaming it live to the Internet.

        I feel a paradoxically equal amount of pride and revulsion at being an American tonight.

        There's been an increasing amount of attempt at regulating the internet, there are major internet "choke points" at telecom switching networks, and at ISPs, so I share your concern. I'm hoping the work going on into distributed DNS systems outside of governmental control get completed and grow to be robust and popular, which should help some -- but there isn't a good solution for "last mile" connectivity yet, and that will be the next major concern to try to figure out.

      • by Anubis350 (772791) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @08:42AM (#38058408)
        I agree with almost all of what you posted except the bridge. The Brooklyn Bridge has been closed Manhattan bound every night for a while now as part of a multi-year repair project, not special to last night. I live right by the bridge, the closures are a giant pain
    • by L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:57AM (#38057552)
      Soap, ballot, jury, ammo.

      The soap box has been rendered impotent by constant erosion of civil liberties. Time to organise a concerted effort into non-bipartisan voting.

      It's especially insulting that this action should be taken so soon after that one day per year when we collectively give thanks to those who gave their lives to protect those very freedoms we are losing.
  • by pecosdave (536896) * on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:40AM (#38057106) Homepage Journal

    The protesters made some good points:

    Chrony Capitalism coupled with inflation really has created a system where money comes out of the void, shoots to the top and by the very existence of that new money being created causes the money other people hold to decline in value.

    Wall Street without a doubt orchestrated the creation of this system.

    HOWEVER Wall Street people are the wrong ones to protest. Companies exist to make money by whatever means legal, and in some cases not legal. The bottom line is companies exist to make money. You invest in whatever company is most capable of doing that.

    The problem lies in chronyism. A company that participates in chronyism isn't doing anything wrong, it's a means to an end in the companies goal of accumulating money. The corrupt government playing ball with chronies on the other hand IS doing something wrong.

    Our government representatives are supposed to represent the people. When they begin to self-serve instead of serve the people they are doing something wrong.

    By protesting Wall Street they're sending the message they don't want anyone to make money. If they were to "occupy the mall" instead and focus all of their energies and talent into figuring out the mechanics of every bribe, kick-back, vote trade, intimidation tactic, threat and dishonest move of every politician in Washington and create something akin to Wikipedia devoted specifically to those ends with as much evidence as possible we would be putting the real problem back in check. Unfortunately our three branch balance of power is out of balance, I blame the executive and legislative branches for pushing it out of balance and I blame the judicial branch for actively endorsing the shift in balance.

    I don't get an actual feeling the OWSers are motived to fix things. I get a sense of "I'm fucking with you because I can" and I get the feeling they're pushing for a fascist communist/socialist shift. As with every large movement it's obviously not an across the board thing, but I do feel that it's the general consensus, and I'm also starting to suspect outside driving forces, in much the same way the Egyptian government had paid pro-government protesters to clash with the grass-roots protesters some time back. With the OWS crowd they wouldn't need more than a couple of key charismatic people placed in each camp.

    In short theres a real problem that needs fixing, but I feel the motive of the protesters is to insert an agenda instead of actually fixing the problem.

    • by Nursie (632944) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:08AM (#38057272)

      I dunno, protesting wall street works for me in a couple of ways (I mean as an idea, I'm not even american so I'm not actually going to go and protest).

      What's legal is not necessarily moral. Companies do have a duty to profit but they don't have a duty to -

      • Play number games that massively, massively enrich themselves without a shred of productive work being done.
      • Buy laws that help them profit at others expense.
      • Encourage other companies to drop ethics/morals, outsource everything and exploit the third world mercilessly while they're at it.
        • Secondly, protesting Wall Street rather than the seat of government also makes it damn clear that they're protesting the financial system and situation, not just being generic angry people.

          OTOH, if they had gone to protest in DC, one wonders if they would have had a lot more sympathy from the right-wing end of the press....

      • Secondly, protesting Wall Street rather than the seat of government also makes it damn clear that they're protesting the financial system and situation, not just being generic angry people.

        But aren't they being seen as "generic angry people," anyway?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Attack DAWWG (997171)

      and I get the feeling they're pushing for a fascist communist/socialist

      Fascist communist/socialist?

      You don't have the slightest fucking clue what any of these terms mean, do you? You're just stringing together a bunch of terms that Fox News tells you vaguely to hate.

      • by pecosdave (536896) * on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @08:17AM (#38058268) Homepage Journal

        Once again, I don't watch TV, including Fox news. Okay, fine I watch South Park every week on the web, but, sure.

        Yes, I do know and the first thing to recognize is that none of the definitions are universally recognized, especially fascism.

        Here are my definitions of the words:

        Fascism - compulsory submission to a philosophy - a very simple definition but it doesn't agree with the one on the Webster website.

        Communism - the government is the only employer - this works at various scales

        Socialism - the redistribution of resources within a group.

        Fascism is bad. Communism and socialism can be good without fascism, unfortunately most movements towards the other two philosophies involve fascism under the pretense that everyone must participate for it to work, but at least it works for all.

        An example of good communism: The historic Iroquois tribe. The tribe lived in their shared long houses, everyone hunted, cooked and fished for everyone, you did not for yourself that wasn't done for the tribe. You were free to get pissed off and leave, go loner or possibly join another tribe therefore participation was voluntary.

        An example of good socialism: The Amish today. If your neighbors barn burns down you help to rebuild it. If you have nails but he doesn't you bring your nails, your other neighbor brings wood, and another brings horses to help pull the frame up. You don't have to help, but the others would do it for you and not helping sort of makes you look like an asshole.

        An example of Bad socialism: Most US social programs that by the time the money gets through the IRS, the Treasury, the agency in question, the contractor, and the sub contractor my $100 in tax money pays $15 towards a grant to research the breeding habits of the woodchuck. [areddy.net]

    • fascist communist/socialist

      dont talk, if you dont know shit. what you typed in there in one shot, are THREE different, separate concepts, and they dont go together. one cannot exist or be merged with the other. but you have written them as if they are one or merged concepts.

      so, basically you dont know shit about these, and yet you have typed us what, 6 paragraphs ?

      how about taking that time to actually google and read what the concepts you were shitting about ACTUALLY mean, from wikipedia or some other source ? out of respect f

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      Wall Street people are the wrong ones to protest. Companies exist to make money by whatever means legal, and in some cases not legal. The bottom line is companies exist to make money. You invest in whatever company is most capable of doing that.

      Time to invoke Godwin: The Nazis were just doing their jobs, too.

      In short theres a real problem that needs fixing, but I feel the motive of the protesters is to insert an agenda instead of actually fixing the problem.

      They have no idea how to fix the problem, and the continual dismantling of our education system is why. This is a problem of the 1%'s making; don't blame the protesters for not knowing what they want, when the powers-that-be have done everything they can to make them ineffectual.

  • by thegarbz (1787294) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:41AM (#38057112)

    I'm not sure how the original wall street movement is going, but it has spread to cities around the world. The one we had in our local small city was ridiculous. As much as I'm happy to defend the right for people to peacefully protest it seemed to turn into more of a tent slum in the middle of our nice city parks, a park which is for everyones use.

    While I'm all for their protest, in face of cancelling a major event that is hosted in the park annually I'm glad that our council gave them a move on order. Not as excessive as this NYPD action, but the protestors did make their point and it's time to let the rest of us also enjoy the public property they decided to essentially squat on.

    • by artor3 (1344997) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:25AM (#38057362)

      So in other words, you're fine with protests so long as they're out of sight, out of mind, and have no hope of actually affecting anything. Got it.

    • . As much as I'm happy to defend the right for people to peacefully protest it seemed to turn into more of a tent slum in the middle of our nice city parks, a park which is for everyones use.

      It really stuns me that you don't think that so many people willing to live in a tent slum to make a point, no few of them because it's better than where they're otherwise living which is much the point they're making as letting things continue this way will put all of us in tent slums, points to a problem worse than the mild inconvenience of not being able to play frisbee in one of a town's several (I hope) parks.

      While I'm all for their protest, in face of cancelling a major event that is hosted in the park annually I'm glad that our council gave them a move on order.

      Fuck your event, and fuck everything else being disrupted by #OWS too. We have serious problems in our society which have made these people feel otherwise disenfranchised, something with which I agree very strongly and which is essentially provable if you examine typical election fraud, who writes legislation, who buys congress, et cetera. The only way to shake people out of their warm cocoons and remind them that there are other people in this country seems to be to inconvenience them. If it takes inconvenience to make you care, then not only are you a poor excuse for a human being, but it proves the validity of these protests.

      • by DarkOx (621550) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @08:49AM (#38058454) Journal

        Fuck your event, and fuck everything else being disrupted by #OWS too. We have serious problems in our society which have made these people feel otherwise disenfranchised...

        So you are angry that so many people are disenfranchised and you turn around and say "Fuck your event" to someone who has just as much right to use that park as you and the OWS protestors do.

        This is the real problem with the OWS movement. For every one person in it who is honestly concerned that something has perverted, "Truth, Justice, and the American Way" There are 10 people who really just feel cheated, entitled, and angry but have no problem turning around and abusing others the very same ways they think they have been abused.

  • Campers (Score:5, Insightful)

    by soundguy (415780) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @04:42AM (#38057124) Homepage
    No one has ever accomplished a goddamn thing by "camping out". You protest during business hours when you can get people's attention and when media bureaus are active and fully staffed, then you go home, take a shower, and sleep in a warm bed. In the morning, you go back and do it again. Rinse, repeat.

    The only attention these knoblickers are attracting by sleeping in a New York park is from the rats and the homeless.
    • Re:Campers (Score:5, Insightful)

      by shutdown -p now (807394) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:09AM (#38057282) Journal

      More importantly, you protest the authority by defying it, not by obediently going where they tell you to go, and ranting there. They lost the moment they were restricted from, you know, actually occupying Wall Street - and headed over to the park, instead of saying "fuck you, we're gonna stay here".

      Of course, this means being tear gassed, beaten up, arrested, and possibly paying a fine or even serving time. That's what civil disobedience is about. And that can actually change things, especially when people around become concerned about why their fellow countrymen are willing to go through such hardship. That's how it worked in Egypt and Tunisia.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by tehcyder (746570)

        More importantly, you protest the authority by defying it, not by obediently going where they tell you to go, and ranting there. They lost the moment they were restricted from, you know, actually occupying Wall Street - and headed over to the park, instead of saying "fuck you, we're gonna stay here".

        Of course, this means being tear gassed, beaten up, arrested, and possibly paying a fine or even serving time. That's what civil disobedience is about. And that can actually change things, especially when people around become concerned about why their fellow countrymen are willing to go through such hardship. That's how it worked in Egypt and Tunisia.

        Yeah, to really have an effect, some of these fucking hippies should set fire to themselves, that's what worked in Tunisia. Or maybe they should ask for help from NATO to bomb the police, like in Libya.

        Curiously, peaceful protest isn't supposed to be so difficult or so illegal in the so-called democratic West.

  • by bkmoore (1910118) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:22AM (#38057338)
    I think the reason the government and mainstream media are uneasy with the Occupy Wall Street movement is it is basically saying the government in its current form no longer represents the will of most American people. Governments do not like having their legitimacy called into question. No other american protest movement in my life time has done this.
  • by Pecisk (688001) on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @05:28AM (#38057374)

    NYPD has some valid reasons to clean that park (as it is private and not everything happens by the book), but they totally drop the ball with trying to control it as much as possible - it is already crying out loud "dictatorship".

    As for OWS - those people should understood that only protesting nothing will change - they have to get into politics at this moment. Two party system have failed US, because currently elites of both parties are drawn in lobby money and are constantly encycled by rich people. Even if someone like Obama wants really to do something (I'm not saying that he did or does), usually such initiatives are leveled with low level complaining. If it doesn't work, "unamerican", "socialist", etc. arguments comes up. You know how it works.

  • #occupy impressions (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Fished (574624) <amphigory@@@gmail...com> on Tuesday November 15, 2011 @09:11AM (#38058624)

    I had the opportunity of visiting occupy wall st. a couple of weeks ago for a couple of hours. I don't claim that this makes me some sort of deep expert, but I did get to see it and formed a few impressions.

    First impressions were of Manhattan, which I had never visited before. Frankly, my impressions were that the place is a police state. I visited areas of Manhattan far away from #occupy, and there's pretty much a copy on ever street corner. There are also signs everywhere about how you are under video surveillance by the police. When I took the Staten Island Ferry into Battery Park, it was escorted by a literal gun boat. Now, I'm a Southern Boy, and I found myself thinking ... "okay, if I were in Beijing or even London, I wouldn't be surprised. But this is America! What the hell is going on in this place?" It seems to me that New Yorkers have traded there "eternal liberties" for "termporary safety", and they need to take them back.

    So, I more or less wandered into #occupy without even knowing that that was where I was heading. Everyone could certainly tell that this old, fat, tired, bald guy with bad clothes was from out of town, but everybody was very courteous to me and eager to tell me about their particular issue(s). Emphasis on their particular and the (s), because there was not one, unified issue driving the place unless it was the feeling that "those in power aren't listening to us." I was approached by people whose primary concern was corporate power, tax reform, fracking, and gay rights in the hour or so I was there.

    If I thought the police presence in Manhattan was over the top, around Zuchotti park it was completely over the top. I'm talking cops every ten feet, a portable observation tower with people-tracking radar ... you name it. But, here's the thing. So, near the kitchen, there's a sign that says, "X00 people have been arrested since #occupy began. There will be a meeting to discuss legal strategy at 8:00PM." And, 10 feet from the sign, and 20 feet from a cop, there's a couple of guys smoking pot right in front of God and everybody. Good old southern country boy that I am, all I can think is, "we at least closed the barn door when we did that!" I also wondered, were those umpteen-hundred protesters arrested being persecuted for "sticking it to the man", or were they arrested for smoking pot in front of a cop? Probably impossible to sort out.

    So, I hung around for a while, sang a few Bob Dylan and Woody Guthrie songs, grabbed a half-dozen copies of the "Occupy Wall Street Times", and left." All in all, an interesting experience, and the Occupy Wall Street Times might be worth something someday if this turns out to be the start of an "Arab Spring" kind of movement in the US (although I doubt it.)

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