Occupy Wall Street: Beyond the Caricatures

Outsiders are criticizing a heterodox movement that they choose not to understand.

(Page 2 of 2)

Were protesters set up? The NYPD released a barely-audible video in which an officer announces via bullhorn that anyone who marches on the road would be subject to arrest. Ryan Devereaux of Democracy Now! reported from near the front of the procession that he personally observed the announcement. Yet despite his close proximity, Devereaux told me, he was unable to discern the officer's words. "Due to the buildup at the base of the bridge, and the chants of people around me, I personally could not understand anything that was being said over the megaphone," he recalled. "If you were any further back than I was, I can't imagine how you would've been able to hear anything at all."

No wonder protesters and many observers smell a rat. Conor Tomas Reed, a graduate student from New York, said the police operation appeared to have been a form of entrapment. "If there was that much of a fear that thousands of people would get onto the bridge," he told me, "they would've had a line of cops at the entrance, all with their billy clubs out, and several people with bullhorns making announcements." Instead, video shows officers leading demonstrators onto the roadway portion of the bridge. The subsequent mass arrest impeded vehicular traffic for more than six hours. Demonstrators estimated it would have taken them between 20 and 45 minutes to walk across unobstructed.

Reports have also indicated that NYPD officers are mocking protesters while they are in custody; one transgender man said he was subjected to a "disrespectful genital pat down" and then chained to a restroom wall for more than eight hours. Such claims are made more plausible by the behavior of pepper-spraying cop Anthony Bologna, the menacing deputy inspector who doused at least five people during a march to Union Square on September 24.

"I think that was disgusting," David Suker, an Occupy Wall Street participant and veteran who served as an infantryman in Germany from 1986 to 1988, told me. "I think that guy should be in jail."

Dozens of police officers encircle Liberty Plaza at any given time, and I interviewed quite a few on Sunday and Monday, asking whether they had heard about what happened on the Brooklyn Bridge. Twenty-eight officers replied with some variation of "no"—they hadn't heard what happened—including a captain and a lieutenant. It seems as if cops are not being permitted to interact normally with press and other citizens. When I asked this man—pictured wearing a striped suit on the right, and standing alongside a row of uniformed officers—if he was with the NYPD, he simply replied "keep walking."

On Sunday evening, as I spoke with a cop on the sidewalk, some kind of "community affairs" officer approached me and asked if I was recording audio. I said yes and showed him the voice recorder I'd been holding in my hand. He instructed me to cease recording. I complied, then took out a notepad. The officer informed me that I was not allowed to write notes either. When I asked the officer issuing these instructions for his name, he refused to provide it; he was wearing a royal blue polo shirt with no name tag.

"The directive that you had to stop recording and taking notes was unlawful," said Chris Dunn, an associate legal director at the New York Civil Liberties Union. "Not disclosing his name would likely be a violation of department rules." Indeed, on Monday, when I asked another community affairs officer whether departmental code requires members of his division to provide their names upon request, he replied in the affirmative.

The only white-shirted senior officer that spoke with me on a human-like level was Deputy Inspector Bernie Del Pozzo, who I found articulate and respectful. However, in the middle of our conversation, an unidentified officer with the police department's "TARU"—Technical Assistance Response Unit—came up to Del Pozzo and said, "Hey, what's going on detective? How are you? You got two minutes?" and escorted him away.

Yes, I'll concede that I entered high cliché alert upon encountering a huddle of protesters singing Bob Dylan's "The Times They Are A Changin'." But their passionate rendition would've made old Zimmerman proud. My takeaway from Liberty Plaza thus far is one of genuine pain and anger in the present, not a hipster-induced flashback to the sixties. Certainly it's worth acknowledging that for the past decade or more, under Republicans and Democrats alike, government and hugely influential corporations have dined out—and then gotten bailed out–by many of the people now calling for change.

Michael Tracey is a writer based in New Jersey. His work has appeared in The Nation, The Guardian, and The Washington Post.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Can't the cops and the protesters and the crony "capitalists" all be assholes?
    That's my take.

  • That's all possible||

    ...the common thread being the lack of criticism of BIG GOVT: Cops being union creatures receiving government loot, crony-capitalists being big receivers of government loot and protesters wishing they could receive a cut of that loot.

  • Teaching Student||

    Not only lack of criticism. There seems to be a desire for even more. I'm going to go observe the "Sit In" in my city to see more of what is going on. My hope that it is not only a big government/socialism love fest

  • Tony||

    Because the entire conversation about big vs. small government is a giant pointless distraction. Ask yourself why so many of the political and economic elites who are the targets of these protests sing the virtues of small government.

  • Restoras||

    Ask yourself why so many of the political and economic elites who are the targets of these protests sing the virtues of small government.

    It seems to me, Tony, the political and economic elites will not sing the praises of smaller government because 1) for the politicians it will require the surrender of power, and 2) for the economic elites the surrender of corporate welfare and rent-seeking. Pretty obvious, really.

  • Tony||

    So you've never heard a Republican talk?

  • k2000k||

    Most republicans simply pay lip service on small government in the most general form. They never really go into the details, bring up goverment police abuse, the patriot act, or social security and they clam up quick.

  • Tony||

    Exactly, but there is only lip service on small government, because it means nothing. What libertarians seem to want is less power, not realizing that power abhors a vacuum, and if you shrink government something else fills in--something you don't even get to vote for. A world in which people are "just left alone" is a fantasy world.

    So yeah, to Republicans small government means growing history's biggest war machine and maintaining a comparably large criminal justice system, while lowering accountability for corporate power. That's the small government part. But they know good and well you can't increase the scope of undemocratic power without maintaining a strong police force--look at Wall St. They are not under the libertarian delusion, though they're happy to borrow their slogans.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    and if you shrink government something else fills in

    Dragons?

    Come on, Chony, try harder.

  • Gojira||

    ...something you don't even get to vote for.

    Leftist lie. I vote with my dollars. The day a Bank of America employee points a gun at my head and forces me to open a checking account with them, I'll admit you were right all along.

  • Tony||

    So a guy with a million dollars gets a million votes? That's not democracy or anything like it.

  • EcoDude||

    I'd be willing to sell my vote to the highest bidder.

  • KPres||

    Yep. And the failure of democracy is that it provides no incentive to exercise it's power wisely. Instead, the incentive is for special interests to overwhelm the state.

  • BB||

    Well, that would be fair except... have you gotten a home loan recently? They all originate from B of A. How about student loans until 2008? It's nearly impossible to avoid B of A if you're pursuing the American Dream...

  • ||

    What uninformed tripe. MY mortgage comes from SunTrust, which is a major competitor of B of A. Before the Obamanoids took over all student loans, there were dozens of private sources. Your views are cartoonish.

  • sevo||

    "not realizing that power abhors a vacuum, and if you shrink government something else fills in--something you don't even get to vote for."

    You don't even know what that means, shithead.

  • KPres||

    "and if you shrink government something else fills in"

    Correct. The invisible hand fills in.

  • DLM||

    power abhors a vacuum, and if you shrink government something else fills in

    True, but it would be an immense improvement if that *something* could be more distributed among the populace instead of a single centralized power center.

  • Restoras||

    Dude, seriously? Did I single out the Democrats? Oh, no, in fact I did not.

    C-. Try harder next time.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Tony's pussy hurts, apparently.

  • KPres||

    Because the opposition to free markets wants to nationalize their business. Duh.

    Why do intellectuals support central planning?

    Why do poor people support redistribution of wealth?

    Me? I'm middle class proletariat who supports free markets because that's the only system that works.

  • ||

    ^this^
    and ignorance of the protesting laws is no excuse.
    keep waving the "no fair" flag, fools and that is exactly what you will look like, fools...
    you want to "Oc Your Pie" there isn't any more Pie...
    you want centralized Gub'mint to take over, vacation in Venezuela and see for yourself the wonders of Chavezopia...
    fools.

  • Kevin Carson||

    I don't consider it pointless at all. Demonizing the plutocrats in terms of their own professed "small government" and "free market" values, and pointing them out as the crony capitalists and corporate welfare queens they really are, would be a powerful weapon.

    There's a reason, quite understandable, that the OWS people don't say much about big government. Every mainstream critique of "Big Government" they've ever heard has been in venues like the WSJ editorial page, CNBC, or from assholes like Tom Delay and Dick Armey.

    All the things they're rightfully against, the plutocratic oligarchy and abusive corporate power, have been defended in terms of "our free enterprise system." If I thought "free markets" meant what filthy fucking pigs like Dick Armey meant by them, I'd goddamned well hate them too.

    It's not their fault that they've never heard a free market critique of corporate power, heard someone pointing out that big business is the biggest beneficiary of big government, or heard an argument for why genuine, freed market competitionn would operate as dynamite at the foundations of corporate power.

    The state capitalist ruling class has coopted the language and symbolism of "free markets" in the same way Stalin's Party oligarchy coopted the language of the classical socialist and working class movements.

  • ||

    It's not their fault that they've never heard

    Because they are infants? Can't read a book in a public library?

    The state capitalist ruling class has coopted the language and symbolism of "free markets" in the same way Stalin's Party oligarchy coopted the language of the classical socialist and working class movements.

    Yeah, sure. It was Stalin's party that fucked up the whole thing, without him it would really have worked?

    Science H. Logic how stupid can people be?

  • Catherine Fitzpatrick||

    This sort of rant would be more endorsable if you provided a concrete case.

  • Ray Pew||

    It's not their fault that they've never heard a free market critique of corporate power, heard someone pointing out that big business is the biggest beneficiary of big government, or heard an argument for why genuine, freed market competitionn would operate as dynamite at the foundations of corporate power.

    The state capitalist ruling class has coopted the language and symbolism of "free markets" in the same way Stalin's Party oligarchy coopted the language of the classical socialist and working class movements.

    Agreed. But the fact that they are acting on their poorly formed understandings of economics and politics changes the game. They are trying to effect change in the system, which affects the lives of others. The French Revolution was filled with good intentions and sharp guillotines.

  • T-Shirt||

    It's not big government that's the problem it's assholes.

  • Heroic Mulatto||

    So let me get this straight, "occupation" is good as long as it's not Jews doing it?

    Ok. Got it.

  • Max||

    You libertois cock suckers are just desperate to get in on the Occupy Wall Street shit, aren't you? It's all the opposite of your most cherished dogmas, you fucking twits, so crawl back on the you prayer rugs and worship Market Forces.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    "Libertois" is funny. So I have to assume it was a mistake. But I'm taking it.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    But I'm changing it to "liberteois."

  • Citizen Nothing||

    pronounced li-ber-TWA, of course.)

  • Citizen Nothing||

    The liberteois prefers comfort to pleasure, the top-hat to the ball-cap, the monocle to the reading glass(and, of course, a pleasant temperature to the deathly inner consuming fire).

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    Pronounced: lee-bear-TWA

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Thanks, EDGrLBC. My bad.

  • ||

    +100 .... I am so stealing that ...

  • ||

    Isn't a libertois just a French Canadian libertarian from Quebec?

  • ||

    Liberteoisie?

  • Bingo||

    The monocled class.

  • ||

    I mean, there are places in Montreal that make poutine with foie gras on it.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Or one from Louisiana. Geaux Paul 2012!

  • BakedPenguin||

    Shit. My 6:00 @ Episiarch - 5:36.

  • sailor||

    There is no chance in hell that I would read that many words from someone I don't know on the internet.

  • ||

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  • nicole||

    Isn't a libertois just a French Canadian libertarian from Quebec?

    I LOL'ed. It's like a unicorn!

    Also, fuck poutine. Frites sauce, bitches.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Beats sucking statist dick, Max.

  • ||

    "...so crawl back on the you prayer rugs and worship Market Forces."
    ---

    Would that be the same market that produced that shiny device you're using to entertain us with your hilarious drivel? :)

  • Tacos mmm...||

    The Market provideth. All hail The Market.

  • that shiny device||

    How does Cuba have a lower infant mortality rate that the United States while spending 5% of the US on health care?

    Are the Market Gods crazy?

  • ||

    Fuck, you're stupid, rectal.

  • Intellectually Bankrupt||

    Libertarians are as intellectually bankrupt as Leninists.

  • KPres||

    And yet you support the Leninists in NY?

  • ||

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    (takes breath)

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Wow! We've NEVER been compared to communists!

    /snark

  • Overt||

    Simple: They lie.

    Next question?

  • rather||

    Fuck, you're paranoid and stupid, epi; out of drugs?

  • sevo||

    "Simple: They lie."

    This should be pasted above any statistic coming out of Cuba.
    A quick search shows the Cuban per-capita GDP to be ether $4,500 or maybe $9,700.
    Or maybe $3.75.

  • Suki||

    Funny things happen when all trust is placed in government, eh?

  • ||

    funny things happen when all trust is placed in credentialism, eh?

  • yeah||

    When you have a small, declining population, on a small island, it's not that hard to provide those services. Cuba is far more of an agri-city state than the US btw.

  • Stupid Libertarian||

    When you have a small, declining population, on a small island, it's not that hard to provide those services.

    That's not the reason.

    It's because Cuba is only 4 letters, and United States of America is, well, way more. Ink and paper savings. Damn cheating commies.

  • yeah||

    Well, yes it is. Just the fact that it is "socialized" doesn't automatically make it the prime reason - other countries with socialized medicine have higher rates than the US, others have lower. I think my model of small area, small population, high urbanization is more telling in this case - looking at the top 10 (using 2009 data - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L.....ality_rate - on the far right), 6 of the top 10 are small islands (or island nations, or just plain small): Singapore, Bermuda, Hong Kong, Macau, Iceland, and Anguilla.

    Furthermore, there are many religious minorities in the US - Jehovah's witnesses, the Amish, etc... who eschew modern medical technology, not to mention those who prefer at-home "alternative" birthing methods, and these can easily account for the .44 difference.

  • ||

    And there are also differences in the way that countries calculate their infant mortality rates. The number is the number of children under one year old that die per 1000 live births. In some places a newborn must go some amount of time after the birth to count while in the US, it is my understanding that if the infant is outside the womb and alive that is a live birth.

  • free2booze||

    Bingo

  • Chris||

    Don't know about Jehovah's witnesses but the Amish do go to hospitals and seem alright with modern medical technology. They just don't use modern technology in their daily life most of the time.

  • Tortillapete||

    Well we can start with the fact that a full term baby in Cuba that dies within 24 hours of birth is not considered a live birth and go from there. I' m guessing you majored in liberal arts, right?

  • Restoras||

    Stop with the inconvenient facts!

  • Uncle Joe||

    So what you're saying is the U.S. should spend much, much, much less on healthcare?

    Sounds like a good idea to me.

    P.S. The market gods are not in favor of government spending on healthcare, PERIOD.

  • ||

    They lie.

  • Entropy||

    The same way there are no gays in Iran.

  • ||

    IPHONEZ!1!1!

  • that shiny device||

    What was that first shiny device to orbit the earth?

    Oh! Oh, shit!

    Libertois, continue to entertain us with your hilarious Market Forces drivel.

    Crapitalism is failing for the same reason communism failed - the agricultural city-State always accumulated wealth and power -- it's a defining characteristic in anthropological definition of civilization -- to the elite until the system collapses.

  • HAL 9000||

    The first shiny object orbit the Earth was that monolith, created by city-statist aliens.

    This conversation can serve no further purpose.

  • Jumbie||

    Logic fail: Hasty Generalisation.

    When Sputnik is their big accomplishment, bought at the cost of starving their people, using it as a symbol of what the Govt can do makes no sense.

    You do understand that a system's strength is revealed by sustainability over time, right?

  • Leeching off Mother Earth||

    bought at the cost of starving their people

    Yeah, the global empire has 3 billion living on next to nothing, many starving, while the US sucks up the wealth of the world via "Economic Hitmen."

    a system's strength is revealed by sustainability over time

    Are you moronic enough to think capitalism is sustainable?

    Civilization must come to see that its picture of reality is leading it to suicide. It lives on topsoil and it is destroying that topsoil. This is ultimately a self-destructive act.

    The Final Empire:
    The Collapse of Civilization and the Seed of the Future

    William H. Kötke
    http://www.rainbowbody.net/Finalempire/

  • KPres||

    "Yeah, the global empire has 3 billion living on next to nothing, many starving, while the US sucks up the wealth of the world via "Economic Hitmen."

    Yeah, that's because those 3 billion spent most of the last century living under Socialism.

    Kinda like what these protesters want for us.

  • Leeching off Mother Earth||

    bought at the cost of starving their people

    Yeah, the global empire has 3 billion living on next to nothing, many starving, while the US sucks up the wealth of the world via "Economic Hitmen."

    a system's strength is revealed by sustainability over time

    Are you moronic enough to think capitalism is sustainable?

    Civilization must come to see that its picture of reality is leading it to suicide. It lives on topsoil and it is destroying that topsoil. This is ultimately a self-destructive act.

    The Final Empire:
    The Collapse of Civilization and the Seed of the Future

    William H. Kötke
    http://www.rainbowbody.net/Finalempire/

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    It seems WI has found a new name.

  • k2000k||

    Just what I was thinking.

    Hint WI Capitalism is nothing more than the creation and exchange of goods, socialist socities are just as subject to those laws, they may try to ignore them but eventually they must deal with them.

  • Coercive Civilization||

    Capitalism is nothing more than the creation and exchange of goods

    Marx would say the same thing about communism.

    You're as deceptive as he.

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    If capitalism really isn't about freedom, then we need a new name for what we're supporting.

    But since it is, we don't.

    Marxism was always about forcing evil exploiters into slavery. Capitalism is just about being left alone. The two are only peripherally comparable.

  • Heap leaching off Mother Earth||

    Just what I would expect from a denizen of the [INDUSTRIAL-SUBURBAN-MODEL].

  • tarran||

    Dude, it's rather.

    She's so fucking insane that she creates multiple annoying personas all shitting on the threads in a desperate attempt to get people to interact with her.

  • Fluffy||

    Yeah, the global empire has 3 billion living on next to nothing, many starving

    Almost all of those three billion are more materially wealthy than the wealthiest man in a hunter-gatherer tribe in the Amazon.

    But as soon as anyone points that out, you'll switch gears and claim that it's not about stuff.

    This is because you are a duplicitous and intellectually dishonest cunt.

  • Anti-Intellectual Fluffball||

    those three billion are more materially wealthy than the wealthiest man

    When you're starving or living in a city hovel on a buck a day...um...not so much.

    Paleolithic people are not stressed by the food security issues of the bottom two thirds of civilized people who are forced to buy from the rentier class or starve to death.

    "The free market means that those without money to buy what they need do not have the right to live."
    - John McMurtry

  • quite||

    The states that have the most problems with hunger and basic needs are generally the ones lowest on the economic freedom scale.

  • KPres||

    "Paleolithic people are not stressed by the food security issues of the bottom two thirds of civilized people who are forced to buy from the rentier class or starve to death."

    Then why were their lifespans only 40 years long?

  • Catherine Fitzpatrick||

    The people on Zuccotti Square have laptops, smartphones, designer water, Snapples, and lattes. There's a special Occu-Pie $15 pizza that people are buying them. These are not people with food security issues. They have time to cook slow food that is organic, fairly-traded, etc.

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    Additionally, just because governments, in their quest to look more intimidating to one another, managed to launch satellites, doesn't mean that private groups wouldn't have done so within a decade without government intervention.

    Same goes for nearly every technological development. Especially if the government wasn't in the way, like it usually is.

  • Gov't is a Privation Group||

    Additionally, just because governments, in their quest to look more intimidating to one another, managed to launch satellites, doesn't mean that private groups wouldn't have done so within a decade without government intervention.

    Government is a "privation group."

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    These word games are PATHETIC. Private, in my context means: composed of soveriegn individuals, acting without coercion in every aspect.

  • Anti-Intellectual Libertarians||

    Etymology isn't a "word game." Privation, private, privilege have the same etymological roots for a good reason.

    What's absolutely pathetic is your definition of "private." Like your dear leader Rand, you have a difficult time staying honest with definitions.

  • yeah||

    What the hell are you even talking about? The definition of "private" as meaning "apart from the state" is very old, at least as old as your use. In the English language, the same word can often have two meanings, sometimes even contradictory. Who are you to decide that someone is being "dishonest" just because they use an (age-old, commonly accepted) definition of a word?

  • yeah||

    From Perseus, the premier online dictionary of Latin and Greek: http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/h.....ntry=privo

    Notice that there are 4 definitions numbnuts.

    From Marcus Cato: Fures privatorum in nervo ataque in compentibus aetatem agunt; fures publici in auro ataque in purpura.
    "Those who steal from private individuals spend their lives in stocks and chains; those who steal from the pubic treasure go dressed in gold and purple."
    —(234-149.B.C.)

    An example from circa 200BC showing the definition commonly used today when people use the word "private". The root "priv-" just means "to free from" - in some cases, "freeing" in the sense of deprivation, in others, "freeing" in the sense of deliverance - removing a burden, etc...

    God you're stupid.

  • ||

    I like my privates very much, thank you!

  • SOmebody like moxipad||

    Maybe has Prawn rawls Koch in ear.

  • ||

    And this is why we dismiss this nonsense. Stop defending the socialists. Spoiled brat, entitlement-minded, collegiate rabble are not to be taken seriously.

  • ||

    If this libertois deigned to go anywhere near Wall Street, my monocle and I would be occupying a nice window office overlooking the protesters.

  • ||

    with a comfy chair!
    here, here!

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Like the Tea Party Movement or any similar, suddenly popular gathering, Occupy Wall Street became a magnet for every would-be activist with a cause. Since the left has more causes than the right, this one's message is more rapidly becoming incohesive and incoherent.

    The loudest self-proclaimed spokesmen also tend the be the batshit insanest, so that's who we see. But while they may appear to be caricatures, they are not really. That's who they are.

  • PR||

    it's called Blair's Law: the ongoing process by which the world's multiple idiocies are becoming one giant, useless force

  • rts||

    Next week will be Occupy Vancouver.

    I doubt there will be many libertarians or Gadsden flags there.

  • ||

    It'll be interesting to see if they can avoid ripping their city apart like they did after the Canucks no-showed in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals.

  • rts||

    I'm just glad I live in the suburbs now.

  • Joe M||

    But unfortunately, Mayor Mike has not yet commented on why officers initially escorted and guided demonstrators across the bridge, giving dozens of people I interviewed the misleading impression that entry onto the roadway portion was being permitted. Once protesters made it about halfway across, they were suddenly cordoned off by rows of officers on both the Manhattan and Brooklyn ends.

    I guess this article was written a few days ago, because there have been a number of videos recently showing that the police didn't try to trick the protesters.

  • CIA/NSA troll||

    Thank you for protecting the oppressive hierarchy, Joe M. Thine name will be struck from the MainCore roster.

  • ||

    We'll see. If the meme spreads that the problem is the unholy alliance of Big Bidness and Big Brother, and Big Brother is the ally who most needs to be underbussed, that would be good.

    For now, though, I get the impression that its about 90% lefty/prog Big Business is Evil Because It Won't Give Me What I Want For Free, about 5% Big Brother Is A Bad Guy, and about 5% homeless people who got lost.

  • ||

    "...5% homeless people who got lost."
    ---

    Actually, they're probably caught a ride on the same buses that take them to the polls on election day.
    Not sure about the free soup though.

  • Doug||

    ...and about 5% homeless people who got lost.

    I lol'd.

    But it does beg the question, can a homeless person be lost?

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    If they end up in a split-level with a mortgage, I think it's safe to say they took a wrong turn somewhere.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    Well -- they always know they're not home.

  • Joe M||

    Someone should really conduct an actual poll of the protesters to get a true sense of what they want. Like, what are your top three priorities, what do you hope to achieve, etc. And don't supply a list of pre-generated answers.

  • sevo||

    Joe,
    I think there was a link here last week interviewing random protesters(?). The responses to "what is your message?" were almost universally embarrassing where they we're standard lefty 'I want stuff for free'.

  • Joe M||

    Yeah I saw that, but still, a few random people aren't necessarily representative.

  • Intellectually Bankrupt||

    'I want stuff for free'

    That's pretty much the libertarian position.

    They want to heavily regulate the surface of Mother Earth with a big-government program called Land enTitlement, or privation property.

    And then pay no taxes to the agricultural city-State that makes privation property possible via its invasive and occupational violence.

    Libertarian = Free-loadin' shysters.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Your name is all you!

  • sevo||

    Careful there, Cyto. Feeding pigeons most always gets you pigeon shit.
    Starving pigeons is a good idea.

  • Chupacabra||

    Eating pigeons is even better.

  • ||

    Not working at the restaurant today, rectal? What, the health inspector is visiting today and they can't have your disease-riddled corpulence there while he's there?

  • sevo||

    This troll goes by the handle of 'liberty for me but not for you', or some such.
    S/he was called on bullshit yesterday by a couple of people and promised to be a 'net "tuff gai" by coping/pasting posts.
    I suggested s/he act her/his age and hold her/his breath so we could all laugh when s/he turns blue.
    But see, now we've all been 'abused', right?
    Pathetic.

  • tarran||

    The fact is, on chrome w/ the reasonable plugin, it's very easy to filter her out. She's absolutely wasting her time.

    The next step, though is figuring out how to collapse entire subthreads so we need not bother with the repsonses to trolls.

  • ||

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    (takes breath)

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    (takes another breath)

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  • ||

    @Episiarch. You just made my day. LOL.

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    I'm a libertarian, and an Ayn Rand fan. Read up on her conviction in the Trader Principle.

    Sorry about feeding the troll.

  • Read your Bible Pray Every Day||

    ...an Ayn Rand fan. Read up on her conviction...

    Convictions create convicts. ~Robert Anton Wilson

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    Wilson is wrong. A convict is simply one who has broken the laws imposed up him or her, moral or immoral, and in thus incarcerated. One's convictions may or may not have anything to do with it, but they certainly don't turn their holders into convicts.

    Or, an apropos example. Ayn had some serious convictions, yet was never incarcerated. And keep in mind, those convictions were just as strong during her early years, before she could have concievably paid her way out of arrest.

    Sorry about feeding the troll. Any thoughts on this one's name?

  • rather||

    LOL

  • ||

    "underbussed" , "Liberteois"

    This thread is a goldmine of new coinage.

  • ||

    I think that there's a few people Just Paid to Be Here, which might increase if the unions try to lead that parade.

    Unions have, in the past, actually hired people (at minimum wage!) to do the picketing that American union workers won't do.

  • SIV||

    Unions have, in the past, actually hired people (at minimum wage!) to do the picketing that American union workers won't do.

    This is SOP.Not an occasional incident from "the past" There are paid temp picketers right down the street from me right now outside a plant.

  • cynical||

    Have you ever tried organizing them to form a picketer's union?

  • ||

    Oh God, please, someone do that! It would be a bit of "consciousness-raising" street theater for the ages. It would do for unions what an affirmative action bake sale does for a campus diversity office. For a minimum investment you'd get millions in publicity, and make unions look like duplicitous hypocrites.

  • St. V||

    We are assuming, of course, that this lost 5% did not originally 'live' there in the first place.

  • Matt Damon||

    Don't forget to squeeze in 10-20% photographers and media.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "For now, though, I get the impression that its about 90% lefty/prog Big Business is Evil Because It Won't Give Me What I Want For Free"

    That's about the size of it.

  • ||

    Are the Occupy crowd really not bringing some police violence upon themselves? This video shows that they are:

    http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=6f0_1318015121

    If you aggressively charge the police, don't cry about taking a baton to the head.

  • Anonymous||

    The video looks like they're trying to get through the police, not attack them.

  • ||

    Get through and do what? What's on the other side of the fence that makes sense enough to shout out a count down, and attempt to overrun police lines in a high tension situation?

    That's not peaceful protesting.

  • St. V||

    What is so important down that street, that the police have reason to block otherwise peaceful protestors from continuing their march?

  • ||

    Private property for one. Should protesters be allowed unrestricted access to the buildings they are protesting? Should a highly emotional situation be allowed to spiral out? Doubtful. No good is going to come from it. How does simply moving locations 20 feet change the message they are trying to impart? It doesn't.

    Think about this potential escalation: Protesters charge my place of business. They are not stopped by police. I'm left to defend my property through private means. How do you think that's going to end? (hint: I'm what liberals call "a gun nut").

    Do you think there are enough police to ensure property rights are enforced? I do not. It is a more efficient use of existing resources to keep protests in locations that minimize violent escalations and property damage. That is perfectly logical, in contrast to the absurd tactic of luring people onto a bridge and arresting them (which I still don't understand the point of).

    @Anonymous, I'm as skeptical of the protesters as I am the cops. I've ended up on police cruiser hoods for dubious reasons before... but the fact that the protesters websites are editing their own videos to present a specific story, one that they're not being aggressive, when further video shows that some are. That sets off my skepticism as much as any politician opening their mouth.

  • St. V||

    You are assuming they were trying to get into the building. On the other side of the cops was more road. The fence you speak of, was off to the side and not in the way of the school of fish.

  • St. V||

    That said, if you want to pump buckshot into any individual who breaks into your store - you likely won't hear much criticism from me, though I would hope you would seek another route (like a good stick-whipping). Just don't go pumping into the crowd, as it makes it difficult for the rest of us gun-nuts.

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    "Protesters charge my place of business. They are not stopped by police. I'm left to defend my property through private means. How do you think that's going to end? (hint: I'm what liberals call "a gun nut")."

    London could have used some people like you a few months ago.

  • Coercive Civilization||

    London could have used some people like you a few months ago.

    Yeah, it worked so well in Sumer, Babylon, Zacpeten, and Tenochtitlan.

    Collapse is on the way, because coercion (of the agricultural city-State and capitalism) is never sustainable.

  • ||

    coercion (of the agricultural city-State and capitalism) is never sustainable.
    --------------------

    you mean people are FORCING this crew to go to college and major in useless things? Kinda sounds anti-capitalist to me. Haven't seen much business lately at the Medieval Women's Art History shop.

  • Anonymous||

    Maybe they want to get out of some silly and overly confining "free speech zone." You really can't tell without more context to the video. Given that it was presented with the clear aim of discrediting the protests as violent, I'm going to go ahead and be skeptical.

  • Molotov's Crock Tail||

    If you aggressively charge the police, don't cry about taking a baton to the head.

    What comes around goes around.

    If capitalist aggressively screw the people, don't cry about taking a Molotov cocktail to the head.

    We're

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    If statists aggressively screw capitalists who coerce no one, don't cry about a violent revolution.

    If people aggressively screw capitalists who coerce no one, sure as hell do more than cry about it.

  • Capitalism is Coercive||

    Capitalism is coercive. It's a lie to say otherwise.

  • k2000k||

    Oh really? I'd like you to explain how so. No one puts a gun to my head and says buy Starbucks, eat McDonalds, or suscribe to reason. So other than because some academic who has never held a real job in his life told you so, how is capitalism coercive?

  • Coercive Civilization||

    how is capitalism coercive?

    Never heard of an Economic Hitman?

    The agricultural city-State (civilization) is inherently invasive and occupational, all through its short history.

    There is no way to live and eat in civilization without paying someone, and payment is enforced with guns.

  • sailor||

    Are you that fucking stupid? When you pay people they do things voluntarily because they want the money, no guns needed. Under socialism no one gets paid, or they get paid the same regardless of how much work they do so you need to put guns to their heads to get them off their asses.

  • sevo||

    sailor,
    Feeding rats only gets rat shit on stuff.
    Starving them is good.

  • Heap leaching off Mother Earth||

    I wish I could quit you!

  • ||

    There is no way to live and eat in civilization without paying someone,
    ----------------

    well, no shit. That is what folks mean by "there is no free lunch". Get a job, make some money, buy your own lunch. If you are legitimately down on your luck, this society will help you get back up. But you have to put in some effort, too, and layabouts who don't want to work are not welcome.

  • ||

    Seriously. If you're complaining that you have to pay someone to get what you want, then go live naked in the wilderness eating bugs. And when you want more than that, wonder what gives you the right to demand that others provide it without you paying them anything in return.

  • Russ Winter||

    Occupy Wall Street has the attention of the people who control this country. Now they are out to try and interpret what it is all about. The "experts" turn to trivial two-party partisanship. The remarks are just ridiculous, including that this is a movement to reinvigorate Presidente Hopium. Herman Cain had the audacity to twist this into a criticism of people who don't work. No Herman, this Movement is about your cronies feeding at the trough.

    What "they" just don't get is that OWS is a pro-democracy, anti-kleptocrat Movement. It is not about class warfare. OWS is pro-American in the traditional sense. It is about removing the anti-democratic influence of money from politics. Kleptocracies using government and the corrupt two party system are dangerously anti-American. The Movement can't let them take the high ground. The high ground belongs to the Movement.

    The Movement will naturally attract true conservatives and true progressives, and true moderates versus "falsies" who push corrupt status quo anti-democracy agendas. I am proud that the Movement sees through this. Stay the course against the corruptos.

  • ||

    what part of "pro-democracy" advocates replacing capitalism with socialism? What part rails about corporations while practically drowning itself in the products of corporations? Please. It is hard to take your anti-corporate bullshit seriously when you have an iPhone in one hand, a pair of Timberlands on your feet, some North Face apparel on, etc etc.

    And why does this movement conveniently ignored that the messiah it helped put in the Oval represents the same interests they claim to oppose? Does it not bother you that Wall St made Obama its all-time leading campaign beneficiary? Or that Goldman alumni meetings are held in the West Wing?

    Money has ALWAYS been a part of politics; it's how folks with little time or opportunity to otherwise participate make their voices heard. That includes the multinationals, the unions, and individuals who like specific candidates. This word-of-the-day "kleptocracy" twaddle you are pushing is thin gruel for anyone who lives and works outside of the faculty lounge of some overpriced university that measures worth in the number of articles one has published in magazines no one reads.

    If this tribe wants to change things, it could start by getting degrees that are actually useful in the real world. How many are grad students in some obscure liberal art/humanity curriculum for which there is no market? How many have actually worked? Anywhere? How many are leeching off mom, dad, and govt subsidies while sitting at the knee of Professor GratefulDeadPonytail soaking up war stories about how the prof stood up to the man.

  • Bingo||

    In my opinion, TARP, the revolving door between Wall St. and DC, and the big fat subsidies that companies like Solyndra received are all very much indicative that "kleptocracy" is a useful term to use. And this isn't even touching on the defense contractors and the $1000 toilet seats or the community organizers and whatever else they fleece the taxpayers with.

    How is this not a government that is based on stealing and funding privileged and well-connected organizations?

  • Apatheist||

    I agree but read what he wrote:

    "Kleptocracies using government and the corrupt two party system are dangerously anti-American"

    See? He thinks its the corporations robbing us and not the government. His solution is a bigger government. Obviously that would leave the "kleptocracy" in place but thats why you call them useful idiots.

  • Bingo||

    Ah, gotcha, missed that to him the corporations are the kleptocrats, not the government.

    Gosh, where do those corporate kleptocrats get the money from again?

  • Leeching off Mother Earth||

    leeching off mom

    Now that's just funny, when you consider how the agricultural city-Statists like you leech off rape and murder Mother Earth. Motherfuckers.

  • ||

    Oh rectal, why are you so stupid? Is it brain damage? An extra chromosome? Fetal Alcohol Syndrome? Just being you?

  • yeah||

    Wait, is their conclusive evidence that rather and White Indian are the same? Because that's hilarious.

  • tarran||

    It can be inferred by the fact that Rather, White Indian & a whole bunch anono-jerks disappear and reappear regularly and simultaneously.

    Rather is very, very, very insane.

  • Bingo||

    This site is basically unreadable without some sort of browser extension to ignore the idiots.

  • tarran||

    Try google chrome with the reasonable extension.

  • db||

    Weep for we who read on smartphones.

  • db||

    Shit! I think that should be "us."

  • sevo||

    This troll goes by the handle of 'liberty for me but not for you', or some such.
    S/he was called on bullshit yesterday by a couple of people and promised to be a 'net "tuff gai" by coping/pasting posts.
    I suggested s/he act her/his age and hold her/his breath so we could all laugh when s/he turns blue.
    But see, now we've all been 'abused', right?
    Pathetic.

  • ||

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    This is fucking great. I haven't been this amused in a while.

  • Another Phil||

    Pretty easily amused, huh?

    Shouldn't there just be a limit on comment length? I don't think anyone would actually read a serious comment that long anyway.

  • Joe M||

    Ahahaha, thanks for the chuckle.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    earth is not a mother.

  • .||

    President Hopium. I am totally stealing that.

  • Apatheist||

    And their solution is more government. We don't need more democracy, we need less (as as in replace democracy with nothing, not a dictator). We need to give power to individuals not 51%.

  • ||

    It is not about class warfare.

    For some, I'm pretty sure it is.

    It is about removing the anti-democratic influence of money from politics.

    Impossible. Money and power will always find each other.

    To the extent they are opposed to the "Citizen's United" case, in favor of government funding of campaigns, etc., they aren't about removing money from politics. They are about removing money voluntarily donated by people from politics, and replacing it with money controlled by the state. How that is "pro-democratic" is a mystery to me?

    Kleptocracies using government and the corrupt two party system are dangerously anti-American.

    That we agree on. To me, though, the root of the anti-Americanism is a huge, powerful government in Washington, attracting rent-seekers like a fresh, steaming pile. If your solution isn't to drastically reduce the power of government, then you have it exactly backwards.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    And of course, the United States is a Constitutional Republic - not a democracy. The founders were quite explicit in their disdain for a pure democracy.

    So any of the "occupy" crowd who claims their desire for more "democracy" is consistent with ?America's founding principles are just plain ignorant.

  • A Serious Man||

    It kind of creeps me out that Russ capitalizes Movement. Replace Movement with Party and you'll know why.

  • ||

    Well, the rule I favor is that anyone (individual or corporation) that gets a subsidy, loan guarentee, claims a targeted tax break, or receives income from a government contract (down to three degrees of separation) , is forbidden from making campaign contributions or donating to political organizations.

    What do you think about that?

  • ||

    down to three degrees of separation

    Will be immediately exploited as a loophole, and then the definition expanded to as to affect everyone, then thrown out as unworkable.

  • ||

    It's problematic, but I think it's important to encompass not just the contractors, but the subcontractors. Basically if your income comes from the government, you shouldn't be using that income to influence the government.

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    How about government workers, and their dependents?

  • ||

    They would be included, IMO. They can vote and they can speak on their own time and money, but they can't donate to others.

  • Paul||

    After hearing Amy Goodman's street interviews, I have some observations.

    Mainly, that most of these protesters must believe that government, at its core is functional, corruption and influence-free, an imminently petitionable (if that's a word).

    They must believe that the corporatism and all of its requisite corruptions must only be around the edges.

    As ostensibly non-violent protesters, they are attempting to petition the government via street demonstrations. Most of the protesters (from what I've heard thus far) are demanding some sort of government action to stem the tide of corporatism, reduce student debt, create low-income housing, extend free healthcare to all, etc.

    So I ask the protesters, what is the mechanism to be employed that will actually affectuate the change you seek?

  • Anonymous||

    Okay, pack it up, guys. You heard Paul. No one is allowed to protest tyranny unless they can submit a comprehensive fifty-point plan in its place. Oh, and one person has to speak for all of the protestors. If you disagree amongst yourselves what that should be? Tough shit.

  • Paul||

    Reading comprehension, how does it work?

  • Apatheist||

    They are advocating tyranny not protesting it.

  • Bingo||

    They've spent at least 12-20 years of their lives in government-subsidized indoctrination where they are told everyone is equal and deserves to have happiness.

    Really, what do you expect?

  • Coercive Civilization||

    government-subsidized indoctrination

    Yeah, it must be where Libertarians pick up their virulent disdain for Non-State* sociopolitical typologies.

  • ||

    You're talking about your own opinion about the Tea Partiers, right, Anonymous?

    Both groups seem fairly similar to me. The Tea Partiers have had some effect in making the GOP marginally less bad.

    Looking at various surveys of national opinion, I'm not sure how good things than get. People like corporatism.

    But a modestly less corporatist Democratic Party and more antiwar one would be better.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    It's about removing the anti-democratic influence of money from politics

    Ah. Now we see the violence inherent in the system.

  • ||

    A handful of sensible people sprinkled among the otherwise inarticulate and offensive throng does not undermine the criticism that this is a movement of ill-informed ne'er-do-wells.

  • Citizen Nothing||

    We still talking OWS or have we moved on to the TP?
    Doesn't matter. You're probably right in either case.

  • ||

    and yet the TP managed to find a few candidates of like mind, unseat incumbents of both parties, and rally around a core set of beliefs. How many of the OWS are even registered to vote? How many can even articulate what is in the Constitution re: what govt can and cannot do? If the group is mad at being caricatured, it is because it makes itself so damn easy to caricature.

  • Tony||

    How many Republicans are going to make tea partiers lives any freer?

  • Joe M||

    Not bloody many.

  • Joe M||

    Still, there's clearly a very interesting split between the new Tea Party wing and the establishment wing of the GOP. I'm hoping the Tea Party wing grows in 2012.

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    I'm hoping the Tea Party wing drops the social issues. They might have a change with the media if they don't start up on religion. Even Bachmann sounded half-sane at the debates when she stayed on economics, and avoided foreign policy and social.

  • Tony||

    But they've surveyed this--the TP is just the Republican conservative (ultrareligious) base that was always there. They may have coopted libertarians and their movement name at one point, but that's who they are now.

    And if Bachmann sounds half-sane to you about anything, then you ought to reexamine what you believe.

  • Restoras||

    Link?

  • Jeff||

    And if Tony sounds half-sane to you about anything, then you ought to climb into a bathtub with a toaster.

  • ||

    I take it you wish that the Republicans didn't have Mike Lee and Rand Paul voting against the PATRIOT Act?

    Change is hard and slow. I'd rather there be a better Democratic Party as well. I would love for a Democratic Party that could wrong foot the Republicans' calls for less spending by proposing cutting spending on corporate welfare and upper middle class and upper class spending. But no, they'll raise taxes to eliminate loopholes, but that's as close as they'll get to that.

    People keep claiming that "moderates" are libertarian, but I see far more anti-libertarian "moderates" out there who are fundamentally corporatist and statist.

  • Joe M||

    Really, I'd love to see some wacky new Democratic wing, the "Occupy" wing or whatever, that fragmented that party like the GOP has fragmented. The more pieces, the better the chances of forming alliances to advance libertarian causes.

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    There is a book you might have heard of that says much the same thing.

  • Tony||

    No doubt a more parliamentary system that allows multiple parties to form and have political power is better than what we have--a good start for modern democracies but more than a bit creaky and falling apart from age.

  • Tony jr.||

    I'm cool with that! Let's call our party the "Pitchers and Catchers"!

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Good point, John T.

    Democrats COULD have done something about the "patriot" Act when they had the trifecta majority, but they didn't. Very telling.

  • ne'er do well||

    Proles, get back in place & respect your betters! You ne'er do wells do not deserve a voice!

    Is this the internet or 13th century England?

  • Redux||

    criticism = oppression

  • PissPants Obama||

    has declared his support for both law-enforcement and whatever....either/or/neither...

  • spencer||

    But the main complaint (of mine) is that there really is NOTHING being protested. "Bad stuff" isn't something to protest. "End Subsidies" is a good protest. But, basically you've got a hodgepodge of people who feel they should protest SOMETHING, so that's what they're doing. It's not a big deal.

  • San Leon||

  • ||

    I laugh every time one of these fleabaggers get arrested. idiots.

  • Bingo||

    Ah yes, self-titled "libertarian" cheers on unionized government thugs locking people in cages.

    Cognitive dissonance much?

  • ||

    Don't you mean unionized government thugs locking up unionized thugs? Nah, doesn't bother me much.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Bets on how many Teamsters wouldn't be arrested by union cops?

  • ||

    First they came for the union assholes...

  • ||

    I laugh every time one of these fleabaggers get arrested. idiots.

  • ||

    So obnoxious, you had to say it twice?

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    It's pronounced "stupid double-click," as I understand it.

  • sevo||

    This troll goes by the handle of 'liberty for me but not for you', or some such.
    S/he was called on bullshit yesterday by a couple of people and promised to be a 'net "tuff gai" by coping/pasting posts.
    I suggested s/he act her/his age and hold her/his breath so we could all laugh when s/he turns blue.
    But see, now we've all been 'abused', right?
    Pathetic.

  • ||

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    (getting tired, holding sides)

  • spencer||

    I believe we've just skimmed the argument that liberty is a zero sum game. (or that power is- it was too long to actually read through for me.)

  • ||

    So obnoxious, you had to say it twice?

    So you support the fleabaggers? Awesome.

  • ||

    Nothing that Mayor Bloomberg does is shocking anymore....

  • ||

    Every organization on the planet has a policy against allowing low-level employees to speak on behalf of the organization without authorization. There is nothing suspicious or nefarious about it. It's completely understandable and expected that the NYPD wouldn't allow officers to speak to reporters.

  • Dan Mage||

    The basic demand, that those in control surrender control or some portion of it, is in fact ridiculous, naive, and unrealistic, especially if Big Government, which exists at this point to do the bidding of corporate welfare queens, war profiteers and state terrorists, is expected to engineer this transfer of power. However, the basic visceral revolt, the cry for freedom is there. People are demanding control of their own lives back. The market is not free, the game is rigged, and only the "little people" are required to "take responsibility" for their mistakes. The marks are wising up, there will be confusion, the usual left vs right BS and tired out rhetoric from both sides, but how the emerging global totalitarian state will respond remains to be seen. This could be the elite's worst nightmare, or just another quaint peasant uprising. Yes, people are confused, but the basic demand is for the restoration of liberty. Alexander Berkman was a Libertarian.

  • Restoras||

    A+

  • Libertarians love Big Gov||

    if Big Government, which exists at this point to do the bidding of...

    The agricultural city-State's Big Government exists primarily to heavily regulate the surface of Mother Earth in an abstract ownership Land enTitlement program for the privileged, called privation property.

    "Agriculture creates government." ~Richard Manning, Against the Grain, p. 73

  • Redux||

    Real freedom means dying of starvation and loving it!

  • Original Affluent Society||

    Real freedom in a Non-State* sociopolitical typology means an Original Affluent Society.

    * NON-STATE AND STATE SOCIETIES
    faculty.smu.edu/rkemper/cf_3333/Non_State_and_State_Societies.pdf

    ** Original Affluent Society
    http://www.primitivism.com/original-affluent.htm

  • Restoras||

    How in hell did these clowns end up here?

  • Intellectual Crybaby||

    waaaaahhhhhhhhhh

    Can't make a reasonable retort, Restoras? Then why the hell are you on a place that purports to extol REASON?

    Put on your thinking cap, (if it isn't too big.)

  • Restoras||

    The problem is, there isn't a reasonable retort to this gibberish. What are we supposed to do, go back to the fucking stone age? That was better? Really? How? Sorry, I don't think it's reasonable to spout neo-paleolithic romanticism and pass it off as a viable solution to problems associated with the totalitarian tendencies of government.

  • Anti-Intellectual Libertarians||

    Gibberish? Keep trying. LOL

    Mine is a well-researched and well-documented critique of the agricultural city-State (civilization.)

  • Restoras||

    Sorry, just because a book has a fancy imprint doesn't mean shit. Libraries are full of pseudoscience. If you were anything approaching an honest intellectual you would know that.

  • White Indian||

    Mine is a well-researched and well-documented critique of the agricultural city-State (civilization.)

    I'm also a GRIDS-ridden SWPL twink that couldn't survive without the multiple drug cocktails that the agricultural city-State (civilization) provides me.

  • eric ||

    Well researched, well documented and totally unrealistic.

  • sevo||

    My guess is that s/he's been tossed off of nearly every other forum, and it's hard to get banned here.
    I'm not griping; it's easy to spot and ignore WI's posts.
    But I don't feed vermin.

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    White Indian sent them.

  • Count Coup on You||

    White Indian sent them.

    Scared? Confused? Domesticated Poodles just can't handle a Wild Indian.

  • Heap leaching off Mother Earth||

    I am a [WILD INDIAN] too and just went poopy in my buckskins. Now the poodle is licking my butt! I will name the poodle [TONY].

    I am [HEAP LEACHES OFF MOTHER EARTH].

  • ||

    Yes, people are confused, but the basic demand is for the restoration of liberty.

    I hope so, but I'm not optimistic that very many of them understand that "liberty" does not encompass "living at the expense of others, thanks to wealth transfers engineered by the State".

  • Bingo||

    Oh, I guarantee it does. The public schools aren't so effective when it actually comes to educating people, but indoctrinating them is another story.

  • Libertarians love Big Gov||

    wealth transfers engineered by the [agricultural city-]State

    Trail of Tears, baby.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Stop living in the past, White Idiot.

  • ||

    Just to post this here again...

    Paul Krugman in the NYTimes:
    It would probably be helpful if protesters could agree on at least a few main policy changes they would like to see enacted. But we shouldn’t make too much of the lack of specifics. It’s clear what kinds of things the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators want, and it’s really the job of policy intellectuals and politicians to fill in the details.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10.....ef=opinion

    It isn't just the CRITICS of Occupy Wall Street who are intent on imposing their own preconceived ideas about what it's about upon it.

  • Bingo||

    It’s clear what kinds of things the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators want, and it’s really the job of policy intellectuals and politicians to fill in the details.

    God, that is vomit inducing.

  • Restoras||

    As much as I have been participating in the ridicule of OWS, I have to agree, that comment by Krugman is utterly disgusting.

  • nicole||

    I feel angry with myself for being actively disgusted. I should be immune to Krugman by now, but somehow he just keeps bringing it even worse. What a motherfucker.

  • ||

    Unfortunately, not surprising.

    I hope that the OWS group can pull the Dems in a slightly better direction, and, yes, I do feel that the Tea Partiers have done so with the GOP. It's probably too much to ask for much more, unfortunately.

  • Paul||

    It would probably be helpful if protesters could agree on at least a few main policy changes they would like to see enacted. But we shouldn’t make too much of the lack of specifics. It’s clear what kinds of things the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators want

    The statements Krugman strung together contradict themselves.

    We need more specifics, whittle it down to a few primary policy prescriptions, it's really clear what they want.

  • ||

    Translation ... since they have no idea what they want, I'm just going to fill in the blanks for them and tell them what their manifesto should be.

    Who do you think he means by "policy intellectuals"?

  • ||

    Who do you think he means by "policy intellectuals"?
    ------------------------
    Columnists named Krugman and presidents whom we are told earned law degrees at Harvard.

  • BigT||

    Krugs sees a parade and wants to jump in front and lead. Reminds me of Palin and others with the Tea Party. That's how the social conservatives got involved in a fundamentally economic movement. I don't see a unifying theme in OWS except Perhaps 'we're mad as he'll and aren't gonna take it.'

  • A Serious Man||

    OWS protestors camped out in a private park have refused to comply with rules regarding picking up after themselves. As a result, conditions in the park have become unsanitary as the park owners have been unable to have ther maintenence crew clean the park.

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011.....-protests/

  • Greer||

    way off topic:

    can someone tell the chick wearing the yellow shirt in the front row of the Brewers'D'backs game to move. I'm not getting anything done and I'm not even paying attention to the game.

  • A Serious Man||

    What's so special about her? You can barely see any details from the default center field cam angle.

  • EDG reppin' LBC||

    Hot! It looks like she is scoring the game on her scorecard, too. Sexy/geeky. Nice combo!

  • A Serious Man||

    Okay, now I see. You get a close-up of her whenever they camera zooms on the left-handed batter's box. Damn.

  • Greer||

    you figured it out. I was getting all chubby watching Prince Fielder at bat.

  • Apatheist||

  • Tony||

    Once you guys realize that obsession with the size of government is nothing but a vacuous bit of sloganeering for the very people doing the looting and power grabbing, you'll find yourselves on the same side as these folks.

  • A Serious Man||

    We're more concerned about the retards that complain about high unemployment while at the same time demand minimum wage be $20.

    Economic illiterates of the world, unite!

  • Tony||

    A good first step is to cleanse yourself of the plutocrat-enabling corporate subsidized evidence-free economic theories to which you subscribe.

  • Joe M||

    You're right! Now let's get down there and explain that to the protesters.

  • A Serious Man||

    Evidence free? Raising minimum wage inflates the value of labor which in turn will distort price signals. The fuckin' Soviet Union is evidence that you can't distort price signals without severely fucking up every single industry in your economy.

    Imagine what these idiots will say when everything in Target costs at least $40. Price freezes! And when price freezes causes production to stagnate they'll push to natioanlize industries.

    Either you're retarded or are delibertately pushing us down the road to serfdom.

  • Restoras||

    Definitely the latter.

  • Libertarian Want Serfdom||

    Our system of private property in land forces landless men to work for others; to work in factories, stores, and offices, whether they like it or not. wherever access to land is free, men work only to provide what they actually need or desire. Wherever the white man has come in contact with savage cultures this fact becomes apparent. There is for savages in their native state no such sharp distinction between "work" and "not working" as clocks and factory whistles have accustomed the white man to accept. They cannot be made to work regularly at repetitive tasks in which they have no direct interest except by some sort of duress. Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of duress. The white man, where slavery cannot be practiced, has found that he must first disestablish the savages from their land before he can force them to work steadily for him. Once they are disestablished, they are in effect starved into working for him and into working as he directs.

    THIS UGLY CIVILIZATION
    by RALPH BORSODI
    NEW YORK
    SIMON AND SCHUSTER
    1 9 2 9

  • Alice Bowie||

    Actually, the native americans would rather die that be slaves to the white man...and they did.

    You ever wonder by they even bothered to by negros from ships coming from africa as opposed to merely making the existing indians into slaves?

  • Restoras||

    Um, I dunno, maybe they were slower runners?

  • Fatty Bolger||

    You ever wonder by they even bothered to by negros from ships coming from africa as opposed to merely making the existing indians into slaves?

    No, I've never really wondered, because the answer is pretty obvious. Native Americans could just run away, and knew how to survive the local wilderness and where to go. Not to mention that they might inspire raids from their local tribes, who would attempt to free them. BTW, native Americans were in fact enslaved by colonists, and quite a lot were shipped off to distant colonies or to island plantations.

  • k2000k||

    That splat sound your hearing? Thats the sound of a not so unstoppable force (pinning for some fantasy paleolithic past) hitting an an unmovable object (reality). Your head would hurt a lot less if you stopped banging your head against the wall.

  • ||

    Now now. It could easily be both

  • Alice Bowie||

    I'm not unemployed. But I'm fore the Minimum wage. But I'm willing to give it up for the libertarian cause. We should try it for at least one year. How much of an impact could it have on the life making $7/hr anyway?

  • ||

    You're as stupid as rectal. Congratulations.

  • Alice Bowie||

    Not the 1st time i've been accused as rectal.

  • Alice Bowie||

    Look. I'm giving in. Get rid the minimum wage already.

  • rather||

    Epi's out of drugs today and extra paranoid; according to him, I've posted all over this thread

  • Punchbowl Turd||

    We are all "rectal."

  • ||

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

    I think I may pass out from laughing so hard. Your impotence is like fine wine.

  • helmuter||

    GE supported the stimulus, Walmart and pharma companies supported health care reform, oil companies support green initiatives and ethanol subsidies. The nebulous "they" you keep referring to are a fluid and complex multitude of players with varying and sometimes contrasting interests. There is no hegemonic "They" which has 100% universal agreement/identical interests.

    The banks claim to be "small government" advocates when it comes to financial regulations, but they sure do like big government when it comes to the Fed and Treasury.

    You're statement could easily be re-interpreted to scold people who criticize the tea party.

  • ||

    You have to be mentally retarded or willfully blind not to see that government holds the power and government gives favors to the corporations.

    Which one are you tony?

  • sevo||

    "You have to be mentally retarded or willfully blind..."
    Both. Definitely both.

  • Tony||

    Therefore get rid of government and let corporations do as they please without having to bother asking permission?

    There is no question to which the answer is "therefore government per se is bad." Government is going to exist in one form or another. The point is to make it work for the people. Libertarians unfortunately seem to think it should work for the "good" people only--those they deem productive, which seems to always coincide with who happens to have the most economic power.

  • sevo||

    "Therefore get rid of government and let corporations do as they please without having to bother asking permission?"

    Yes, shithead.

  • ||

    There is no question to which the answer is "therefore government per se is bad."

    Wrong. That's the answer to virtually EVERY question, outside of a very few legitimate collective action problems.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "Therefore get rid of government and let corporations do as they please without having to bother asking permission?"

    So coroporations are able to do as they please?

    Name one corporation that has the capability of forcing someone to buy it's products or services.

  • Health Insurers of America||

    Thanks to Obama, US!

  • goneGalt||

    So coroporations are able to do as they please?

    Not in any world I live in.

    Name one corporation that has the capability of forcing someone to buy it's products or services.

    While I agree in large measue with this statement, it is a non sequitur. A corporation can "do as they please" regardless of my purchasing choices.

  • cynical||

    Therefore get rid of government and let corporations do as they please without having to bother asking permission?

    You're assuming the only thing the government brings to the table is the ability to tell them "no" when they want to do something bad.

    However, government also gets to tell them "yes" when the people would otherwise discipline them through the market; either by attacking consumer choice directly, or (more likely) by penalizing upstart competitors that would give consumers a better option. Government (theoretically) checks businesses with one hand, but it grants them power that would be unattainable without an economically interventionist government with the other.

    As a result, shrinking government can actually make the people more powerful when standing against corporations, especially in fields naturally prone to competition. It's true that the people and their market might be a little weaker and more disorganized -- but the big corporations they face have only grown so large because there is a government around to protect them from being crushed under their own ponderous mass (e.g. "too big to fail"). Without state backing, bigger businesses will disintegrate and be replaced by smaller businesses that the people can discipline more easily through pure non-coercive means. And while the disorganization of the actors in a free market is a weakness in some ways, it also makes them more incorruptible, since there's no leader to buy off to sell everyone out.

    There is no question to which the answer is "therefore government per se is bad."

    To rephrase: "All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state." You sure you want to go there?

    Surely, at a minimum, in questions of faith, though, and expression, we should assume by default that government per se is bad. Even the assumption of innocence in the justice system, while technically part of government procedure, is sort of saying "unless proved otherwise, assume government intervention is bad." Are you opposed to these things?

  • Tony||

    You can't just keep saying "shrink government" without explaining what that means. What are we cutting exactly?

    How come everything anyone talks about cutting is straight from the corporate laundry list of demands?

  • DLM||

    How come everything anyone talks about cutting is straight from the corporate laundry list of demands?

    So corporations are evil, therefore anything a corporation wants must by definition be wrong and must be opposed?

  • ||

    "...it’s really the job of policy intellectuals and politicians to fill in the details." I'm pretty sure that is what got us into this mess in the first place.

    There's just something about the term "policy Intellectuals" that makes me want to gag.

  • BigT||

    Just Krugs self-validating HIS duty to lead the parade, in lock step with black jeebus.

  • ||

    If Eric Cantor and his cronies think that the "Wall Street Protest" is nothing but a MOB and messy gatherings, he is living in the foolish world. He should thank his God that these hundreds and thousands of people who have joined this protest around the Nation are still behaving civilized way, have not damaged to any property or have done any harm to anyone, and did not go to teach lesson to the individual politician but if Cantor and his groups will come out openly against them and give them wrong label, some of them will surely behaved differently taking march and protests and hunger strikes to their homes and offices and demand time bound programs to restore America 's reputation, prestige and economical stability by cutting trillion dollar tax loot to the millionaires by Bush, stopping wars at once and closing all loop holes to the large corporations, banks and wall street goons. Cair &Cantor; has not to wait too long, when the protesters will start demonstrating on his home and office very soon.If less fortunate Arabs can revolt against their dictators and kings, why American cannot raise their voice to their politicians who have sold their souls to the millionaires and billionaires.

  • Alice Bowie||

    that's a really long sentence.

  • Restoras||

    Nice - give us what we want or else. Threaten and scare children. Very brave. Well good luck with that but don't expect any sympathy when the bullets start flying - at you.

  • Alice Bowie||

    "Give us what we want or else" statements is not uncommon for a MOB.

    The TEA PARTY has never really justified violence from their mob...but they've shown sympathy for those who become violent now that we have a "communist muslim christian job destroying president".

  • Restoras||

    So it's ok because the TP supposedly did it first? Sorry, go sell crazy somewhere esls.

  • Alice Bowie||

    I'm saying EVERY REVOLTING MOB IN HISTORY has made that statement. Not that the Tea Party made it first and the occupiers should follow.

    But that's ok. I'm not the bit shocked by the mis-quote.

  • Restoras||

    TEA PARTY. Not EVERY MOB IN HISTORY. Next time, be more precise if you don't want to feel like you were misquoted.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    There likely would have been something like the TP had Hillary won, Alice.

    Or any other Democrat, for that matter.

    Hell, maybe even if McCain had won.

  • DLM||

    I remember the TP type grumblings started in about 2006 with the "Bridge to Nowhere". It may have been earlier, but I wasn't paying attention. That was one thing that helped the Democrats get control over both houses.

  • Libertarians Want Serfdom||

    but don't expect any sympathy when the bullets start flying - at you

    Works both ways, aggressor.

    Our system of private property in land forces landless men to work for others; to work in factories, stores, and offices, whether they like it or not. wherever access to land is free, men work only to provide what they actually need or desire. Wherever the white man has come in contact with savage cultures this fact becomes apparent. There is for savages in their native state no such sharp distinction between "work" and "not working" as clocks and factory whistles have accustomed the white man to accept. They cannot be made to work regularly at repetitive tasks in which they have no direct interest except by some sort of duress. Disestablishment from land, like slavery, is a form of duress. The white man, where slavery cannot be practiced, has found that he must first disestablish the savages from their land before he can force them to work steadily for him. Once they are disestablished, they are in effect starved into working for him and into working as he directs.

    THIS UGLY CIVILIZATION
    by RALPH BORSODI
    NEW YORK
    SIMON AND SCHUSTER
    1 9 2 9

  • Restoras||

    I don't fear you, clown boy. Pretty sure you don't know the difference between safety switch and a light switch. Bring it if you have any stones.

  • Libertarian are so Aggressive||

    Bring it if you have any stones.

    You think you got the bigger libertardian gun, eh? LOL

  • White Indian||

    I certainly have the smaller SWPL dick!

  • Mr. FIFY||

    So, you're *completely* non-aggressive, White Indian?

  • rather||

    epi, its me. Ya know how you can tell? I use my link in the handle.

    Now call your dealer , and tell him it's an emergency

  • Greer||

    I think that you are either epi's wife or indeed epi himself. But maybe you guys can take it outside, your whole back and forth bear baiting is really fucking boring.

  • rather||

    epi's wife?

    Do I sound like a crack whore? I don't even drink

  • sevo||

    "Do I sound like a crack whore?"

    No.
    Don't insult crack whores.

  • SIV||

    The stupidity of those smelly hippie "protesters" has infected the otherwise civil and high-minded H&R comments.

  • Brett Stevens||

    No matter who you find in the crowd, they're not the majority. This is a left-leaning movement by the masses against the markets. They want more wealth redistribution and class warfare, not an even playing field.

    Even if this movement had "good intentions" for its origin, it has become a cheerleader for the neo-socialist Democratic party and their ilk -- endorse at your peril.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    Anyone who uses "grok" in an article automatically gets an automatic deduction of 100 credibilty points.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Why? I think Heinlein hit it out of the park when he coined that term.

  • Haunted Taint||

    To the protesters' credit, they've figured out that something is terribly wrong in the US economy, and Wall Street is right at the center of it.

    They're looking around for ideas that explain what started this mess and how to get out of it. Naturally, because of the current political climate, most of those explanations and solutions will be state-based: Regulate X, subsidize Y, nationalize Z! Like Milton Friedman said, when there's a crisis people respond to it using the ideological tools at hand. That's why libertarianism has to be one of those tools...

    With the exception of a few hardcore communists, I don't think the Occupy Wall Street people are beyond reason. They're just totally ignorant of libertarianism, and they're following the first ideologies they've found that agree with them that the current financial system is fucked. But libertarians also agree that the current system is fucked, and have the only coherent and well-developed theory to explain it.

    Specifically, the Austo-libertarian program (end the Fed, stop the bailouts, smash the currency monopoly, etc.) is more radical and far-reaching than people give it credit for.

    And conversely, there's no reason why folks on these boards who care about free markets should be defending one of the most government-distorted markets in the US economy. But by ignoring and mocking the entire Occupy Wall Street phenomenon, that's exactly what we'll be seen to be doing.

  • sevo||

    H.T.,
    If your premise is correct, the conclusion follows. But I haven't seen it. Most of what I've seen is 'I want free shit!'.
    Even assuming you're right and I'm wrong, how would libertarians (not noted for group activity) have any effect?

  • Tony||

    Do you really think you misanthropes and apologists for the plutocrats are going to be remembered as the heroes here?

  • sevo||

    "Do you really think you misanthropes and apologists for the plutocrats are going to be remembered as the heroes here"

    Shithead, your opinion isn't worth squat. Is that clear?

  • Toni||

    I wiped my ass and thought the dirty paper made sense, so I posted it.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    "To the protesters' credit, they've figured out that something is terribly wrong in the US economy, and Wall Street is right at the center of it."

    Except Wall Street isn't right at the heart of it.

    Government inteference in the economy is right at the heart of it.

  • ||

    meaning they haven't figured out anything at all. Which takes us back to "I want free shit".

  • Haunted Taint||

    Except Wall Street isn't right at the heart of it. Government inteference in the economy is right at the heart of it.

    You're acting like these two things are mutually exclusive. Or even substantially different.

  • cynical||

    Well, yes. They are. Wall Street is somewhere up in it, as are Solyndra and Halliburton and Boeing and GM and Walmart. But right in the fucking center of it is Uncle Sam.

  • Haunted Taint||

    The distortions of the government's monopoly on money and credit are everywhere. You can't buy a glass of lemonade from a kid on the street without feeling it.

    I've no love for beneficiaries of subsidies like Boeing, GM, Walmart, and on and on, but it all begins with money and banking.

  • sevo||

    "I've no love for beneficiaries of subsidies like Boeing, GM, Walmart, and on and on, but it all begins with money and banking."

    Bull
    .
    .
    .
    .
    ,
    shit.
    The 'money is the root of all evil' claim is the provence of idiots.

  • quite||

    I think he's going for more of a gold standard solution here, not "greed/money is the root of evil".

  • DLM||

    I think it's supposed to be *love* of money is the root of all evil.

  • ||

    Look at this. Someone put together all the logos from the Occupy protests around the world.Crazy-interesting. http://www.jenx67.com/p/pre-oc.....treet.html

  • canada goose clothing||

    Wonderful blog! I genuinely love how it is easy on my eyes and the information are well written.

  • The Ghost of Sigmund Freud||

    What does an occupier want?

  • Private Idaho||

    Now!

  • ||

    Glad I took the time to read this. When I first read/saw on the news about the Occupy Wall St I did write them off as a bunch of whiny college/hippster kids. Now I'm beginning to see these folks are more diverse (still predominantly young hippsters but that's no reason to dismiss them) and have actual grievances that I mostly agree with. I too have become fed up with current public policies that are aimed at helping those already with wealth and power accumulate even more wealth and power at our expense.

  • sevo||

    And a shout-out to Reason's squirrels for dumping the infantile copy/paste troll!
    WAY TO GO!

  • Jon||

    If Ron Paul supports something, his acolytes will twist their whole world view to justify it. This writer is just another example

  • ||

    I attended the OccupySF general assembly tonight. They were joined by a couple of hundred anti-war demonstrators from a nearby protest in honor of the tenth anniversary of the war in Afghanistan. The OccupySF encampement is in front of the San Francisco Federal Reserve. I saw so many End the Fed signs I lost count. There are protesters with signs saying Mises.org. I said to them Hey I'm a Lew Rockwell fan too! and we discussed the libertarian influence in the Occupy Wall Street and OccupySF protests.

    At last nights general assembly someone stood up and said, "We are not leftists!" and got a big cheer.

    Pundits on both the left and right are really missing this one. Yes the SEIU showed up one night and yes you do hear a lot of the old 60's "Power to the people" type rhetoric. But this is most assuredly not the traditional leftist movement.

    This is populist, it's beholden to no political party, and in fact the protesters deeply distrust the political system.

    This thing is growing and nobody knows where it's going. But it's very non-traditional. Not very many Obama fans there ... former fans perhaps but no longer.

    You really have to go down there and check it out wherever you live. I've seen the left protest. The Occupy movement is NOT the left.

    The way I put it is that it's a combination of Karl Marx and Ron Paul.

  • BigT||

    "a combination of Karl Marx and Ron Paul."

    The intersection of those two is the null set.

  • ||

    Adding Marx to anything good is the same as putting a turd in a milkshake.

  • F Hart||

    Don't knock it until you've tried it!

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Maybe Max can kill his mom, inherit her estate, and use the money to start a TurdShake franchise.

  • ||

    I don't have a clue if the following is universal, but today I picked up the following regarding the Tulsa, OK chapter of "Occupy". Local talk show host posted this earlier:

    One of my listeners asked Occupy Tulsa for a list of their demands. Here is what she was given.

    Demand one: Restoration of the living wage. This demand can only be met by ending “Freetrade” by re-imposing trade tariffs on all imported goods entering the American market to level the playing field for domestic family farming and domestic manufacturing as most nations that are dumping cheap products onto the American market have radical wage and environmental regulation advantages. Another policy that must be instituted is raise the minimum wage to twenty dollars an hr.

    Demand two: Institute a universal single payer healthcare system. To do this all private insurers must be banned from the healthcare market as their only effect on the health of patients is to take money away from doctors, nurses and hospitals preventing them from doing their jobs and hand that money to wall st. investors.

    Demand three: Guaranteed living wage income regardless of employment.

    Demand four: Free college education.

    Demand five: Begin a fast track process to bring the fossil fuel economy to an end while at the same bringing the alternative energy economy up to energy demand.

    Demand six: One trillion dollars in infrastructure (Water, Sewer, Rail, Roads and Bridges and Electrical Grid) spending now.

    Demand seven: One trillion dollars in ecological restoration planting forests, reestablishing wetlands and the natural flow of river systems and decommissioning of all of America’s nuclear power plants.

    Demand eight: Racial and gender equal rights amendment.

    Demand nine: Open borders migration. anyone can travel anywhere to work and live.

    Demand ten: Bring American elections up to international standards of a paper ballot precinct counted and recounted in front of an independent and party observers system.

    Demand eleven: Immediate across the board debt forgiveness for all. Debt forgiveness of sovereign debt, commercial loans, home mortgages, home equity loans, credit card debt, student loans and personal loans now! All debt must be stricken from the “Books.” World Bank Loans to all Nations, Bank to Bank Debt and all Bonds and Margin Call Debt in the stock market including all Derivatives or Credit Default Swaps, all 65 trillion dollars of them must also be stricken from the “Books.” And I don’t mean debt that is in default, I mean all debt on the entire planet period.

    Demand twelve: Outlaw all credit reporting agencies.

    Demand thirteen: Allow all workers to sign a ballot at any time during a union organizing campaign or at any time that represents their yeah or nay to having a union represent them in collective bargaining or to form a union.

    These demands will create so many jobs it will be completely impossible to fill them without an open borders policy.

    You can make up your own mind regarding the legitimacy/moonbattery.

  • rsi||

    Tulsa.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Wow.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    That's the same list of fairy-dust-sprinkling crap by moron Lloyd Hart that was linked by Reason in an earlier post.

    The mere fact that it calls for a "living wage" of $20/hr regardless of employment, trade tariffs, and open borders, shows that they can't be taken seriously.

  • Hate Potion Number Nine||

    Two Questions:

    1) Where does Big Money end and Big Government begin?

    2)Kind of a bonus question here (but I think its related to the discussion): Why were Bison nearly exterminated in the western US? Was it a) to benefit well connected business interests or for pinko school lunch programs?

  • ||

    2. A little of both, as usual. The buffalo skin robes benefited well-connected business interests. And they were allowed to do what they did by the government, because it solved their problem with the insurrectionist Plains Indians. Cut off their food source, and they suddenly become more complacent.

    And no, this is not White Indian. LOL

  • ||

    And don't try to tell me that the government had no power because it took place in the "lawless west". The MARKETS for those bison hides were in places like NYC.

  • ||

    Take any two of them. Any.
    They don't agree about what they're protesting. They don't agree about why they're there.
    They are economically illiterate. They have a vague sense of dread about their future because they should, but not for the reasons they think.
    Reason, why did you perform cunnilingus and fellatio on these FUCKING RETARDS and give them even one iota of credibility?

  • ||

    Actually I am starting ot get a sense that - in certain respects - this really is the same movement as the Tea Party. Just in a more left-liberal manifestation. These are people who have finally gotten aorund to getting pissed off, largely at the same shit, only three years later, because it took that long for the progressive left ot get over it's infatuation with Obama. They finally woke up and got pissed off about the bailouts.

    The fact that they are economic illiterates actually enhances the similarity. Both the Tea Party AND the Occupiers are incoherent expressions of anger at the vast swindle and injustice that was TARP.

    Of course they are feeling around for whatever ideology might lend a structure to their argument, as others have pointed out. And the handy crutch of Marx is ready, because that's what side of the political spectrum they are on. By at root, they are motivated by the same problems as the Tea Party.

    It's really a horrible shame that our political spectrum is so divided here, and where cordoned off into these opposing filter bublbes to such an extent that neither the occupiers or the Tea Parties are likely to realize that they could be on the same side, and they could both learn something from the other. The Occupiers could benefit from the Tea Party's criticism of big government, and the Tea Party could benefit from Occupy's stance on war and civil liberties. Each of these groups really ought to be giving the other a good faith hearing right now.

    Sadly I don't think that is likely to happen given that both of these groups seem to be so heavily prisoners of their "filter bubbles" as all politically passionate people tend to be. Each side's filter bubble includes an axiomatic hatred and distrust of the other side. The Occupy protestors have been practically weaned on hatred of FOX news and animosity towards the Tea Party. While the Tea Parties spend their evenings listening to Glenn Beck and Palin. Neither side is really going to give the slightest consideration to the fact that they are two reactions to the same basic disease, and neither of them has a coherent answer to it.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Excellent post, Hazel.

  • Uncle Joe||

    There is nothing statists can learn from each other.

    Neocon supporters do not really have a problem with big government, and most leftists do not really have a problem with war. Democrats have been just as eager for aggressive wars as Republicans, and Republicans have been just as eager for government to stick its nose in everybody's business.

    The only thing the majority of the Tea Party and "Occupy" can learn from each other is how to be the biggest flaming hypocrite, when they're not busy being the biggest partisan party cheerleader.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Much in the same way you can teach us about pessimism, Uncle Joe?

  • Mr Whipple||

  • Mr Whipple||

    I stole this. I hope you don't mind. I did give you credit.

  • ||

    I'm not sure you can make the comparison, at least this strongly, between the two groups.

    OWS isn't just an expression of ideas, it's street theater. It's got all the trappings of a "movement." It's bound to attract a lot of idiots with no real ideas but a strong desire to "belong" and "do something" and who want to cast themselves in a romantic light.

    What I'm trying to say is this may be as much or more social phenomenon than political movement, and any attempt to extract meaning or message from it will be complicated by such.

  • ||

    Street theater is just something the left does. That's how they protest.

    The point is that this is effectively a delayed reaction to TARP (and also the Feds MBS purchases). It's the same reaction the Tea Party was formed out of three years ago, just a different part of the political spectrum.

    The reason it took three years for the left to react is because their guy - Obama - was in power. It's perfectly natural. It's also the reason that the Tea Party got branded as racist. From the left side of the spectrum, the most important thing that had happened in decades was the election of a black guy, and how dare anyone be protesting at this amazing moment. But the right side of the spectrum is obviously not infatuated with Obama. It's not that they were racist they just didn't see it as the huge deal that overrode the appalling nature of the bailouts and TARP.

    So the right reacted immediately, and the left didn't. And because of the political polarization in the country, the reaction from the left was actually suppressed because their side was in power. Especially because their side had a black man as president. It was probably suppressed just as a reaction against the Tea Party by itself, because that's how fucking polarized the political climate is. But to be fair, the election of the first black president is a pretty powerful event, and a pretty good excuse for swallowing your criticism of the government for a couple years.

  • DLM||

    But to be fair, the election of the first black president is a pretty powerful event, and a pretty good excuse for swallowing your criticism of the government for a couple years.

    A few months I could understand, but TWO FREAKING YEARS?!

  • ||

    Much better article. As the crowd of leftists grows, the tone softens, I see. Good.

    Naturally, you'd shove a Paulbot front and center in the article, as if he'd somehow support the central OWS themes of de-privatization of the Fed, re-regulation of Wall Street and campaign finance reform. Of course, he would not any more than the Cato Institute would.

    But as a bit of reporting, even with that Paul nonsense: much fairer work than a couple of days ago.

    Also: no, this is not the Tea Party. Some ways you can tell: no central core, no phone banks, no professional PR, no wall-to-wall media coverage, no town hall sabotage, no guns, no fundraising, no astroturf, no misspelled signs, no giant portfolio of suddenly appearing professionally executed websites, no Hitler mustaches, no mau-mau images, no screaming about Medicare being a government handout from the pilot seat of a Medicare Rascal scooter, no Congressional caucus (yet), no endemic fiscal and civic illiteracy and not a wing of the Democrats by any stretch.

    Instead, it is a giant fuck you to everyone who believes the economic engine of capitalism should get everything it wants. This is thousands of people who loudly reject the retarded idea that there is no such thing as a society.

    Not the tea party by a long shot. And definitely not economically libertarian. Nice try, though.

  • Jeff||

    I see. The "HITLER'S BANKERS" signs and the like are better because they don't have silly mustaches drawn on them?

    If demands for $20/hour minimum wage (whether or not you work, apparently), and both open borders and high tariffs are not illiterate, then I am really not sure what is.

    And it's only natural they reject the notion that capitalism should get everything it wants, because they feel - very, very deeply! - that they should get everything that they want: free college, free health care, free ponies, freedom from economic reality.

  • ||

    I see. The "HITLER'S BANKERS" signs and the like are better because they don't have silly mustaches drawn on them?

    Nothing wrong with the truth, is there?. Has nobody told you Wall Street banks absolutely did business with Nazi Germany? Or that you can buy shares today in Hitler's IT vendor IBM, or in Opel/GM, or Ford? I mean, these things are real things. What exactly is wrong with keeping these real things in mind when thinking about the demands - and liberty-destroying aspects - of capitalism? Why would you delude yourself and evade reality, hiding from real things, such as the fact that this very website is subsidized with profits from sales of petrochemical technology to Iran?

    This is a discussion worth having, even if it's hard for you to have it when you're groveling before the "free market" on a subsidized oil billionaire's pet website.

    If demands for $20/hour minimum wage (whether or not you work, apparently), and both open borders and high tariffs are not illiterate, then I am really not sure what is.

    And it's only natural they reject the notion that capitalism should get everything it wants, because they feel - very, very deeply! - that they should get everything that they want: free college, free health care, free ponies, freedom from economic reality.

    I've seen lots of messages coming out of this thing, wide-ranging and diffuse, generally centered on the long overdue push-back against free-market fundamentalism. We tried it your way for generations, and now the former middle class is about to start eating out of dumpsters. You should expect these ideas to surface as we strive to restore a balance that you dipshits pretended we didn't need.

    And you've got zero right to complain that they're "ignoring economic reality" when you can't even cop to the fact that laissez-faire, global capitalism is just fine with Hitler -- as well as Koch pals Stalin and Ahmadinejad.

    Some friend of liberty unrestrained capitalism is.

  • NotSure||

    You really do have a mind of a 5 year old. America has more social welfare and money thrown at the "poor" than ever before, that is not "free market fundamentalism".

    Having a mind of a 5 year old, you will not understand what the consequences of $20/hour minimum wage will be, all I can say is that when your daddy buys an ice-cream for his little brat it will cost him $100.

  • Jeff||

    I started typing a response but realized it was more than you deserve, so I'll just point out how hilariously reminiscent of Reason's What We Saw at the Rally to Restore Sanity video where the chick was bitching about Hitler mustaches and Moynihan pointed out that people drew Hitler mustaches on Bush and she said, "Well, yeah, but Bush is a Nazi" this exchange has been, and call you a fucking clown. Which is still more than you deserve, but it's the least I can do.

  • ||

    I accept your surrender.

    Also:

    Ha ha.

  • ||

    You see Bush really was a Nazi, only a Nazi would support Israel unconditionally. You people really are all very stupid !

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    okaayyyyyyyyy

  • Prescott Bush||

    I co-founded the Nazi Party with Hitler.
    Didn't you people learn anything from 2001-2009?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Shut the fuck up, Orel. You add NOTHING of value to this or any other conversation.

  • K Marx||

    "You add NOTHING of value..."

    By adding labor to it, he increased its "value".

  • The Market||

    I'LL decide what is added value. Not anonymous Internet posters.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Lame post, Orel.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    I've seen lots of messages coming out of this thing, wide-ranging and diffuse, generally centered on the long overdue push-back against free-market fundamentalism.

    Because corporations and auto companies getting bailouts from the government is the definition of free-market fundamentalism.

    Ha ha.

  • ||

    Pulling out this "doing business with Nazi Germany" argument is a retarded crutch.

    LOTS of people did business with Nazi Germany, including progressives. Including leftists. Do you even realize that Hitler had many left-leaning sympathizers?

    World War 2 was 70 years ago, and Hitlers is this larger than life boogeyman that nobody now seems to realize was a real political figure, and the real politcal figures do not come to power without hordes of believers and supporters.

    you can't even cop to the fact that laissez-faire, global capitalism is just fine with Hitler -- as well as Koch pals Stalin and Ahmadinejad.

    And THIS is one of the most ignorant statements you've made. Hitler was a socialist. The Nazi party was socialist. It wasn't called 'The National Wocialist Workers Party" for no reason. Sure it was a militant, nationaistic version of socialism, but their economics was still coming from Marx, not Ludwig von Mises.

    And it was Koch's experiences in Stalinist Russia that turned him into a libertarian. SO much for that garbage.

    As for Iran, as someone with some slight knowledge of US export control laws, I can be fairly confident that whatever the Koch brother sold to Iran was almost certainly harmless, and their crime merely consisted of being in the way of the kind of overly paranoid bureaucrats who like to classify "aluminum tubes" as nuclear weapons components. It is the same bullshit that leads to the conclusion that Iraq had a biological weapons program because someone once sold some anthrax samples to a university there.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    I hear crickets coming from the "but, but, NAZIS!" posters after the above, Hazel. Good call.

  • quite||

    Who gives a shit who sells what to Iran? Sanctions are retarded.

  • inner tubes||

    Banks and businesses may have been content to do business with Hitler and Stalin (up until they started expropriating), but they were much much MUCH happier with the US war effort and post-war US led Bretton Woods system.

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    Care to try again? All I got out of your comment is a bunch of nonsense?

  • The Art-P.O.G.||

    By the way, this was directed at "Orel Hazard".

  • Uncle Joe||

    Here's one for you, in case you missed it.

    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-lTIn.....ations.jpg

  • Mr Whipple||

    Yeah. That's being pasted all over Facebook.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    I did my part by posting it as well.

    The hypocrisy is *o *thick in this movement... it's like White Indian using a computer in his home to post against homes and computers, and Tony bitching about wealth and fossil fuels while he drives a car and makes a lot of money.

  • Tony||

    In my defense, it's because I'm a cunt. I'm not sure what White Indian's excuse is.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Like I said...

  • ||

    Tony, you're not a cunt. You don't have the warmth or the depth....

  • Tony||

    Whereas you're OK with endless plutocracy and destroying the environment, so that makes you better!

  • sevo||

    Tony|10.8.11 @ 4:18PM|#
    "Whereas you're OK with endless plutocracy and destroying the environment, so that makes you better!"

    Does posting lies make you feel better, shithead?

  • NotSure||

    People who believe in trade would require a society you idiot. What these people want is a society where they get free stuff from others. They are a society of 5 years old brats, which is why you feel so close to them.

  • Uncle Joe||

    "When a U.S. Marine takes the oath to uphold the Constitution, Cortes said, he also vows to protect the right of citizens to peaceably assemble. "We're supposed to defend our fellowmen, right? So if you see somebody, whether it's the police or not, abusing somebody—you're going to do something about it, right?"

    Oh. gimme. a. fucking. break.

    These mindless drones that will follow government into any illegal and aggressive war regardless of the constitution truly want anybody to believe they take it seriously? That they're going to fight any cops that abuse their power? Maybe mr. Marine should better start by fighting his fellow marines over in the middle east. What utter tough-talking, empty headed BS.

    Hey, Mr. Marine... Heard about the Patriot Act? Why aren't you fighting your own government if you really claim to respect the constitution so much?

  • XinTX||

    "The banks got bailed out / we got sold out" is probably the most common chant I've heard at Liberty Plaza,
    -------------------
    On this I think the protesting bunch and the TEA Party agree. But this article didn't address the 'list of demands' from this group that was posted on line. It's basically "give me a bunch of free stuff and don't expect me to work for it" (free college, $20/hr wage whether they work or not, etc.). Given that, I think they are well within their rights to protest, unreasonable in their 'demands' (as posted), and generally un-American in they way they expect those demands to be met (take it from someone else so they can have their freebies without working for them). Does no one teach economics or the Constitution in college any longer?

  • Tony||

    Economics is un-American.

  • NotSure||

    Good spoof, captures the essence of Tony thinking short and sweet.

  • Scruffy Nerfherder||

    Perhaps it represents an opportunity for someone like Ron Paul to talk to them. At least there is some common ground.

    Either that, or leave them for the communists to indoctrinate further

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Like when Roseanne Barr showed up at the New York peasant uprising?

  • ||

    I think the communists are going to dominate. But it could be a teaching opportunity, just as the Tea Party was. Get a few libertarian ideas out there. Break into their filter bubble with some ideas they've probably never heard or considered before.

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    Ron Paul only has common ground with this group in that he's also batty. He just shares a few beliefs with Republicans as well. Hope it doesn't rub off on the GOP, which is already burdened down with RINOs.

  • GILMORE||

    The Occupy Wall Street movement has produced a lot of simplistic caricaturizations and pre-emptive dismissals from people who haven't attended any of the daily events in Lower Manhattan

    How about people who have, live in/are from manhattan, and work in finance?

    I haven't met a single non-idiot.

    Jounalists might have. They might attract the brighter ones. Were they wearing a tie? I would guess not.

  • sevo||

    Orel Hazard|10.8.11 @ 6:49AM|#
    "Nothing wrong with the truth, is there?. Has nobody told you Wall Street banks absolutely did business with Nazi Germany?"

    Hey, Oral Horseshit, tell us how you feel about the Cuban embargo.
    And Armand Hammer's deals with the Soviets.

  • Private Idaho||

    To sum up: Strangers argued, nothing was achieved.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    "a vacuous bit of sloganeering"

    Hope and Change?

    Pay their fair share?

    If you love me, you'll pass this bill?

  • Mr. Mark||

    Please.

    They're twits.

    They couldn't find up.

  • Realist||

    Michael Tracey is a writer based in New Jersey. His work has appeared in The Nation, The Guardian, and The Washington Post.
    This tells you all you need to know.

  • Mr Whipple||

    I try to not be too hard on the "Occupiers". They are certainly not wrong for recognizing a problem, and there is a big one. It is their understanding of the problem, and their "solution(s)" that are wrong.

    "Free Banking" is not a fee free checking account. I wonder what kind of responses I would get if I held a sign saying:

    Free The Banks?

  • Fatty Bolger||

    They just need Otto to explain things to them.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Er, Otter.

  • Almanian||

    Is there something going on in New York?

    Also, I am the 1% - suck it, bitches.

    That is all.

  • Mr Whipple||

    Is there something going on in New York?

    I don't know. I can smell Patchouli all the way down here in South Jersey. I thought there was a Dead show in Philly, or something.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Look, it's a good thing there are sensible people at these things, but they are outnumbered by the anti-capitalists and the just-plain-angry-at-corporations types.

    The endgame question is, will this be a positive movement, or will it be a vanguard for a Bolshevik-style revolution?

  • ||

    My personal feeling is that this will birth something like a lefty version of the Tea Party. Just as the Tea Partiers have their social cons, the Occupy movement is going to have it's Marxists. And both of these things will (and are) the Achilles heel of each movement. Their both the baggage that they are going to cart along because it's just the shit that people from that side of the spectrum bring with them when they get on the bus. Unfortunately, it's also the key reason the other side hates them and makes it impossible for them to appeal to a broader audience. The Tea Party was never able to reach beyond the Republican base because of the social conservatives, and the Occupy movement will never reach beyond the progressive left because of the Marxist element.

  • sevo||

    Disagree to this extent:
    I doubt the OWS group will elect an "OWS" candidate.
    The TP at least has the unifying goal of reducing taxes. Again, outside of 'I want free shit', OWS just doesn't seem focused enough to influence a candidate, and I don't think 'I want free shit' is going to do the job.

  • ||

    The TP's unifying goal is reducing spending. Taxes are secondary. There's no fucking point in reducing taxes if you don't reduce spending first.

    Anyway, I think you may be right that OWS is never going to elect a candidate. I just don't see it happening. Not least because I don't think OWS is anywhere near as married to the Democratic party as the Tea Party is to the Republicans.

    The Tea Party has pretty much stated that they are not going to run third party candidates. By contrast, I could definitely see OWS lending it's support to the Green Party and getting maybe 5% of the vote in the next election.

    Joining forces with the Democrats to re-elect Obama? Not going to happen.

  • DLM||

    Again, outside of 'I want free shit', OWS just doesn't seem focused enough to influence a candidate, and I don't think 'I want free shit' is going to do the job.

    Time will tell.

  • Mr Whipple||

    It's......it's........it's.......wait for it........

    THE COFFEE PARTY

    http://www.coffeepartyusa.com/cx-membership-july

    Coming direct from the greedy Capitalist institution known as, Starbuck's.

  • Mr Whipple||

    That was a response to Hazel.

  • ||

    Yeah, the coffee party is going nowhere fast. That was destined to fizzle from the start simply based on the fact that they billed themselves as a response to the Tea Party.

  • ||

    "Such claims are made more plausible by the behavior of pepper-spraying cop Anthony Bologna, the menacing deputy inspector who doused at least five people during a march to Union Square on September 24."

    Isn't this just as bad as characterizing the entire Occupy Wallstreet movement based on the activity of a few?

  • ||

    That guy's first name is Anthony? Really? "Tony Bologna?"

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    That's gotta be a pseudonym.

  • ||

    It's articles like this that tend to keep me from freely affiliating as a Libertarian. Just because a group of people get together to supposedly exercise their 1st Amendment right does NOT make them worthy to be considered a Constitutional phenomenon. So, a few of the people there are representative of the anti-Statist movement we should all support. Does that make the whole movement worthy of our support. No.. Flat out NO. These people are wholeheartedly backed by the very same people who want to completely regulate commerce, restrict personal freedoms, and deny property rights. For anyone, much less a supposed Libertarian, to support this rabble of uneducated, Socialist goons is contemptible.

  • Jeff||

    That this twaddle was published on reason.com reflects poorly on Reason, not on libertarianism.

  • Tony||

    When you bitch about people wanting to make it so that corporations can't screw people over and poison the earth, or return taxes to Clinton-era levels so we don't have to destroy retirees healthcare access ("restrict personal freedoms and deny property rights") it's hard to see why they'd want you either. All you are is an unpaid shill for the very interests they're protesting.

  • sevo||

    Tony|10.8.11 @ 4:24PM|#
    "When you bitch about people wanting to make it so that corporations can't screw people over and poison the earth, or return taxes to Clinton-era levels..."

    When you lie and post misdirection, you're shithead.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    How will raising taxes a few cents on the dollar, fix ANYTHING?

    Oh, wait... it's just Tony again, playing wealth-envy bullshit games.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Sorry... four point six cents on the dollar, which is a bit more than "a few".

    Still won't fix anything.

  • Tony||

    How will taking away healthcare from millions of retirees fix anything?

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    How will taking away healthcare from millions of retirees fix anything?

    Perhaps retirees need to start coming to grips with the fact that they aren't going to live forever, and society is under no obligation to extend their lifespan as long as possible.

  • Ecclesiastes 9:11||

    I returned, and saw under the sun, that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, neither yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to the intelligent, nor yet favor to men of knowledge; but time and chance happeneth to them all.

  • Almanian||

    Cool story bro

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Separation of church and state, bro.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    I love Ecclesiastes.

  • Trainwreck Spotter||

    I love this place!

  • Larry David Sandwich||

    In the interest of maintaining one standard, I believe that it is appropriate to start referring to these protesters as "terrorists".
    Of course VP Biden and many, MANY left-wingers slandered the Tea Party this way for peacefully demonstrating so....lemma, lemma...theorem.

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    The caricatures are right on the money, and this column didn't do sh*t to erase any of them.

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    Honestly, if these pimples want to go out to some deserted, wooded area and defecate on each other, come up with nonsensical slogans, etc, that's their right, as long as the guy who owns the land they're on doesn't care. But otherwise they're more of a public nuisance than a movement. Just a bunch of middle-class libertine panhandlers with more issues and mental disorders than the ones who typically hang around major intersections, parking lots, and gas stations.

  • Almanian||

    But gotta admit that, on the whole, they have MUCH better fashion sense than the ones who typically hang around major intersections, parking lots, and gas stations.

    Plus, drums.

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    Fortunately, we don't have to smell them. But I disagree with you on the point about dress sense. Weather-beaten clothes and people never scare me. But large crowds of idiots do.

  • ||

    overcome with power! Obama is proof of that!
    reowjor 4 minutes ago

    "Welcome to Jonestown!"...."WELCOME TO JONESTOWN!....."Refreshing Kool-Aid is available at the Hope and Change Hospitality tents...REFRESHING KOOL-AID IS AVAILABLE AT THE HOPE AND CHANGE HOSPITALITY TENTS.....Barak and Michelle are our father and monther...BARAK AND MICHELLE ARE OUR FATHER AND MOTHER...We should all drink their refreshing Kool-Aid.....WE SHOULD ALL DRINK THEIR REFRESHING KOOL-AID....

    "Heterodox movement", my ass.

  • Mitchell Freedman||

    To Michael Tracey,

    Could you please explain this again to your Reason editor cohort, Mr. Cavanaugh?

    And maybe someone might alert Mr. Cavanaugh to hold his judgment until there are polling among OWS people to see if they resemble more Mr. Cline than the more heterodox folks Mr. Tracey noticed. You know, the way a few polls showed there is a rather significant number of people among Tea Party folks who have rather "traditional" views about racial matters...

  • ||

    "Occupy Wall Street" isn't heterodox at all. It's a left leaning populist outrage against wall street that overlaps somewhat with limited government advocates, who do not appear to be a driving force behind the event.

    Consider the NAME of the movement. It's not "hurrah for free market" or "end government subsidies and regulation". No, it's "occupy wall street", which smacks of wannabe revolutionary sentiment against the establishment commonly found in the liberal fringe. The young crowd among them do not oppose bailouts as a matter of statist policy. They're just pissed at what they see as the government rewarding the rich. Most of them will gladly assist the government spending money on green energy lobby, ACORN, finanacial aid, and "living wage" and pensions.

    We've probably seen enough of this uprising to figure out what it is. Tea partiers and libertarians do not raid banks (happened in LA) with a giant mock check chanting "make the banks pay". They don't argue for increased tarriffs on imports and demand that minimum wage be raised 20 bucks per hour. Their "manifestos" can summarized as "I have an expensive artsy degree and now I have no job"

    Ron Paul wants to abolish the department of education. He's no friend of welfare and affirmative action if I'm not mistaken. He's not fond of the Obamacare either. Seems to me the occupiers are choosing to focus only on Paul's more "anarchist" positions while either ignoring or choosing to be igorant of his core libertarian values that they often attribute to crooked republicans who love big business.

  • Catherine Fitzpatrick||

    Michael,

    I really have to question what you're up to here. You seem to have a felt need to whitewash this clearly Marxist, sectarian, cadre-run group inciting the OWS protests and pretend it's some glorious new social movement of ordinary folks just fed up with Wall Street. Digging up Ron Paul supporters and Tea Party libertarians to appeal to the Reason crowd today (and what did you dig up to appeal to the Nation crowd yesterday?) doesn't impress me whatsoever.

    I was also there at the same march and interviewing people, and I wrote down a lot of the signs and the rhetoric being supported -- it is little different than Port Huron SDS cant -- we have come no further in 50 years than to recycle these old communist ideas that were threadbare even back then and are utterly discredited now.

    You really cannot artificially portray this movement as libertarian when all the signs, all the rhetoric, all the speeches are of the SDS sort.

    http://3dblogger.typepad.com/w.....treet.html

    http://3dblogger.typepad.com/w.....elves.html

    and no, they are NOT demonstrating peacefully. All their very own social media documents how they deliberately linked arms and shouted "take the bridge" and stormed the Brooklyn Bridge, deliberately going into the road and not staying on the pedestrian walk, blocking traffic for hours. Police clearly warned them of arrest with bullhorns. Even if somehow some of them didn't hear the horns, *what were they doing on the bridge in the first place, shouting "take the bridge"?!

    I simply don't buy your claim -- taken from biased operatives in this sectarian movement -- that the police "lured" the demonstrators. Not when they had plans to storm the bridge and there are numerous pictures showing them doing just that! You ought to really smell a rat when you let the biased and self-interested Democracy Now! tell the story. None of you are ever adequately explaining why these protesters "occupying Wall Street" were even opting to go on the *Brooklyn Bridge* in the first place.

    It's fake, manipulative victimology -- the same occured last Wednesday when they stormed police barricades and went in the road again, in order to disrupt "business as usual" deliberately as a tactic. Let them not whine of "police brutality" when they deliberately chose "direct action" as a tactic -- and one that seems little informed about the tactics of past protest movements where people at least went limp and went into sit-ins when protesting.

    No Marines are needed to defend the right of the citizens to PEACEABLE assembly. That's not what you had here, and I and others have witnessed it. The crowds, especially the organized unions, were largely peaceful. Not so the cadres from Anonymous and Ad-Busters and various other unknown sectarian groups hiding their full agendas. They have a notion to start trouble and agitate for the Leninist "worse the better" to heighten the drama of "police brutality" and they are getting their way.

    The First Amendment allows restriction as to time, place, and manner. If you have a parade permit (which you get not through a discretionary system but through notification), then you can't expect, if some of your number go off the route and deliberately block traffic, and rush police barricades that you won't get arrested. At least have the courage of your convictions and not whine about the police doing their jobs.

    Your notion that drone attacks in a war are not legal or require "due process" are unencumbered with the realities of international law, and the other incitements you're listing don't seem to benefit from any sort of real journalistic curiosity. Why can't a bank give money to the NYPD? If you suggest that some Revolutionary People's Committee had better henceforth approve all such donations, I don't we have a free society anymore, and certainly not one with libertarian ideals. After all, many people keep their money in banks. Why should those innocent people be harmed because tiny sects want to overthrow capitalism and destroy banks?

    And really, this sort of mindless Marxist cant, "a select few billionaires, in collusion with government, making decisions that hurt the rest of us behind closed conference-room doors" is learnest lefty helplessness and inexcusable in a magazine devoted to freedom. Could you cite some concrete examples when these evil people did such an evil things?

  • Sheldon Richman||

    If the protesters' basic message is that our lives and well-being are at the mercy of large institutions over which we have no say, they are right. That was Karl Hess's libertarian message. Isn't Ron Paul saying that too (on most issues)? Libertarians should fill in the details.

  • eric||

    I don't know which protesters the writer has interviewed but all I've heard is a bunch of professional protesters who have simply traded big corporation kool-aid for big-government kool-aid. It takes a supremely high level of ignorance not to see that they are exactly the same flavor.

  • ||

    The vast majority of protesters are chanting for more regulation, higher taxes and bigger government. What's with the writers at "Reason" these days? This movement is, except for the odd Paulian, the antithesis of libertarianism.

  • RB Miller||

    Most of the interviews that I've seen display a serious ignorance of why they are protesting and who they are protesting against.

    If the idea is to get attention, they have gotten it. However, the purpose is unclear. They should be in DC and protesting the big government liberalism that is doing nothing for economic expansion and everything bor increasing our annual deficits and cumulative debt.

    econus.blogspot.com

  • ||

    This tripe is the antithesis of what I come to Reason to read. For all the reasons cited by Elizabeth & many others, just count me extremely disappointed.

  • ||

    Good for you, Mr. Tracey! I live in the Midwest, so all I know about these demonstrations is what's on TV and the radio, and if someone believes only what they see and hear there, then these citizens are nothing more than long-haired college students beating on drums. Like many of those citizens demonstrating in New York and other cities, I was disgusted (though not completely surprised) when the banks and auto companies got bailed out in 2008. I wrote my representatives in Congress urging them to vote no on the bailout bills, and one of them stuck by his guns and did so, more than once.
    And despite all the subsequent promises to do something about the, "banks too big to fail," nothing apparent has been done. So I say, more power to the citizens exercising their Constitutional rights!

  • ||

    Well, I live in LA and when I observe the movement here, I see mostly college kids plus "grownup" activists with ties to social justice groups and union. The union paid bail for a small group that was arrested for sitting in at a local BOFA.

    Reason Magazine is wary about losing their "non partisan" status, so they'll occasionally post ham handed articles that attempt "balance" by painting the "Repblicans" as just as bad as the "democrats", such as the recent article that bashed conservatives as anti science because they deny global warming, much like 70-90% of libertarians.

    Reason has agreed that a few signs and nutjobs do not a tea party make. So why generalize this largely anti libertarian movement based on a few attending Ron Paul / Tea Patriers, whose anti government positions appears more borne out of anti establishment sentiments and radicalism than a true embrace of liberty?

  • ||

    well it is official.
    The american Nazi party and the American communist party have endorsed the fleabaggers.
    So once again the all the leftist hate groups are working together to try and bring down the American economy.
    You democrats must be so proud that socialist groups like the Nazis and communist are like peas in a pod with you.

  • ||

    The author begins with the statement that “outsiders” are criticizing a “heterodox movement they choose not to understand.” So let’s start there.

    To begin, “heterodox” is one of those buzz phrases that mean many different things. Literally it means “unorthodox” or “dissident” or “different from the mainstream” which isn’t really saying anything at all except that the “Occupy” movement is anti-mainstream (of course it doesn’t tell us what or which mainstream the Occupy Movement is different from)…just that it is. It moves then to the assertion that those who criticize the “Movement” have “chosen” not to understand; the implication being that the meaning of the Occupy Movement is clear and obvious and Critics must ignore this obvious meaning since they criticize the Movement. In other words, criticism is implied to be possible ONLY if one doesn’t understand the real meaning ( and to not understand is obviously a conscious choice). A dubious assertion.

    But let’s examine the content of the article itself with the hope that this apparent meaning becomes clear despite the misleading titling.

    ***

    He says, “no question that the Occupy movement has an ethereally left-leaning tilt” but goes on to say that “all the "End the Fed" advocates, Ron Paul supporters, Internet freedom activists, and even some who identify as "Tea Party Patriots" in the mix make this phenomena difficult to characterize with pithy sound bites.” So the movement is Leftist … but it’s also Rightist.

    Hmmmm.

    He says,
    “Caricatures cannot do justice to the fully uniformed Marine who stood at the northeastern corner of the square last Sunday night, glaring emotionlessly out into the street. John Cortes told me he'd come from Staten Island to monitor the goings-on at Liberty Plaza. Why? When a U.S. Marine takes the oath to uphold the Constitution, Cortes said, he also vows to protect the right of citizens to peaceably assemble. "We're supposed to defend our fellowmen, right? So if you see somebody, whether it's the police or not, abusing somebody—you're going to do something about it, right?"

    On Monday afternoon, an elderly man approached me on the corner of Broadway and Cedar St. to ask if I was covering the demonstration. He had a comment. "I'll be 89 this month," the man said. "I served in the United States Navy during World War II. I remember the Great Depression, when my parents had to go [on relief]. And I realized that this is a wonderful country, but there are too many greedy people who control it."

    Walter, from Manhattan, asked not to have his last name printed. "I hope this continues," he said. "Not only here, but throughout the United States, and in larger groups. This country has suffered enough from the plutocrats."

    So here we have a Marine (glaring emotionlessly) who is there to “defend our fellowmen”; we have an 89 year old who is there to protest “greedy people”; and we have Walter who is anti-wealthy people.

    I’m still confused as to what this Heterodox Movement is all about, though; so let’s continue:

    The execution of Troy Davis, for example, motivated many, as did last week's drone-strike assassination of U.S. citizen Anwar al-Alaki without due process. Then came the revelation that Wall Street's own JP Morgan Chase made a $4.6 million donation to the New York Police Department, slated to cover future expenditures on things like "security monitoring software."

    So now we learn that the Occupy Movers are also the Anti-Troy Davis Execution Followers….the Anti-Drone-Assassination Followers….and the anti JPMorgan Police Donation Followers. I must be extraordinarily dense because the meaning of the Occupy Movement continues to elude me (perhaps I am choosing NOT to understand what is evidently so clear).

    He goes on to say:
    “The feeling is fundamentally post-partisan. Everyone knows, on some level, that "Shit is Fucked Up and Bullshit"—as one placard put it. And rampant police abuse has only confirmed that something’s got to give.”

    Unfortunately this clarification only confuses me further. To be partisan is to support a cause or a movement. To be post-partisan is to be past the point of supporting any movement or cause. So if the Occupiers are fundamentally post-partisan I am puzzled as to why they are gathering (like passionate partisans it would seem to me) to support post-partisanship and to note that SHIT IS FUCKED UP. Of course, there’s the rampant police abuse and that just confirms something (but I don’t know what) about post-partisanship and that SHIT IS FUCKED UP. Maybe that’s news?

    The author does note that David Suker, a post-partisan partisan, a veteran who served as an infantryman in Germany from 86-88 (an interesting identification…. which gives David’s insights absolutely zero weight…found the pepper-spraying disgusting.

    To his credit, though, the author does seek to identify opposing perspectives, attempting to interview the police about the “Brooklyn Bridge arrests”. Their answer “no – they hadn’t heard what happened” CLEARLY indicates that they had been forbidden (by powers unseen) to interact normally with the Press. The man in a pinstriped suit even said “keep walking”! Obviously a tool of the imperial elite…but, admittedly, a congenial tool since many might said, instead, FUCK-OFF.

    The topper, though, was the “Senior Officer” who spoke with the author “on a human-like level” (much preferable, I would suppose, than being spoken with on a bovine-like level) but who was taken away by another officer who said (and I quote): “Hey, what's going on detective? How are you? You got two minutes?"

    What could be clearer?!

    So there you have it. The Leftist & Rightist Occupy Movement (chock full of post-partisans who oppose the Troy Davis Execution, the use of Drones against Anwar al-Alaki, and Morgan Chase’s donation to the Police Fund) clearly stands for “identifying the problem” that SHIT IS FUCKED-UP AND BULLSHIT but has not tangible or credible remedies to Shit being Fucked-Up.

    Now really, How could Anyone think that this is just a “wooly-headed horde spouting juvenile rabble”? C’mon Man!

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