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Occupy Wall Street Abandons Personal Responsibility

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Occupy Wall Street is desperate for events that give it media-worthy content.

In some cases, it’s hardly worth saying that Occupy Wall Street’s content is newsworthy. For example, the clips we’ve all seen about students being pepper sprayed at UC Davis are hardly truthful. More on that in a second.

In multiple bids to create content and keep their video streaming efforts alive, the Occupy Wall Street movement is planning several protests for the coming weeks. Do the protests they’re planning mean they’re coming up with an agenda or manifesto?


A large gathering of protesters affiliated with the Occupy Wall Street Movement attend a rally in Union Square on Nov. 17 in New York City. (Spencer Platt / Getty Images)

Let’s have a look at a couple of the issues occupying OWS, an Occupy Wall Street manifesto from the Los Angeles Times, and wrap up with what really happened at UC Davis.


Dec 6 – National Day of Protest – Foreclosures

As much as foreclosures are a bad thing, what exactly is OWS protesting?

Yes, all the crooked lenders, bankers, and advisors should be locked up. Sub-prime mortgages were an insane product to begin with. Offering them to people without jobs, no collateral, and no real hope of being able to carry the mortgage after renewal, was diabolical.

We won’t even get started on the issue of foreclosures due to medical debt. That’s a whole separate article.

But what about the people who accepted the sub-prime mortgages? They had to be smoking some pretty magical stuff before signing on the dotted line.

At the very least, every person currently in trouble because they accepted a sub-prime mortgage should have their butt kicked up around their shoulders.

Student Debt

Which is less reasonable:

  • Accepting a mortgage with no hope of repaying it


  • Accepting the equal of a mortgage as a teenager with small prospect of repaying it

As a carpenter, I consistently advise teenagers to pursue a trade before pursuing a degree.

Becoming a tradesman takes five years – an apprenticeship. You get paid to learn, and when you choose to go to college you’ll get Life Credits for your experience. That alone can shorten the process by a full year.

Then there’s the money you earn while learning to be a tradesman. Even paying for rent and groceries is going to leave you with enough to pay for the first couple of years in college. And you’ll always have a job each summer and on weekends to keep earning money. Not a bad deal.

And you never have to worry about being out of a job. Even in an economy like this, good tradespeople are in demand. One of my clients is hiring mechanics as I write this.

OWS Manifesto

The Occupy Wall Street movement wants media attention, yet is strangely unwilling to take responsibility for the message.

In a recent article in the New York Times, Justin Wedes (a former Brooklyn science teacher who helps manage the @occupywallstnyc Twitter account) says, “We are not trying to control the message. People are getting on board with the message of the 99 percent and they are sharing their stories and we have engagement from all over the world.”

Maybe I’m missing something, but that makes OWS seem like a global pity party. Let’s all whine about how bad we have it, and maybe it’ll magically get better. You have to wonder what would happen if all the OWS activists started putting their efforts into something creative and constructive.

In an effort to give them some direction, the Los Angeles Times has published a manifesto for the Occupy Wall Street movement. Even if the movement never adopts this particular manifesto, it did a lot to help me understand what OWS might be about.

Too bad I had to learn from the LA Times instead of the people with the message.

Pepper Spray at UC Davis

As it happens, the manifesto from the LA Times also mentions the pepper spray incident at UC Davis. And I promised to come back to this.

There’s a significantly longer video available on YouTube that shows the entire incident.

The video is about 15 minutes long. It starts at the beginning – when police are telling protestors they must leave the area or be arrested. The video even gives you the URLs for other videos that provide additional information or other views of what happened.

When you see the whole incident, it’s interesting to watch students detaining police and refusing to allow them to leave. It’s only after repeated warnings that the police finally pepper sprayed the students in an attempt to leave.

That’s just a slightly different story than the OWS movement has put forward.

Wrapping Up

It seems the Occupy Wall Street movement has shifted its attention from protesting to staying in the limelight.

Some of the volunteers have occupied a dilapidated building in the Bushwick area of Brooklyn. They’re establishing a TV studio in the building and plan to deliver regular broadcasts to “provide real-time perspective,” says Vlad Teichber.

According to the New York Times, their ambition is to serve as the main portal for aggregating and curating video content about the movement from all over the world. How long can it be before they start asking for donations to support their efforts?

On the other hand, perhaps it will develop into a business and become the first capitalist creation of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

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About TheConradHall

  • The Occupy Movement is NECESSARY for our citizens to expose the corruption which Big Business has infected our Government with. Every single person occupying the streets and protesting Corporations is a hero and a patriot. I was compelled to lend a hand and create some new posters for the movement which you can download for free on my artist’s blog

  • Hello Brandt,

    Thank you for your comment. I agree that corruption within Big Business, banking and the government all need to be exposed.

    I do, however, find it difficult to credit every member of any group with blanket status. In the case of OWS and the incident at UC Davis, it was less than heroic for students to surround police and threaten to detain them unless those arrested were released.

    Patriotism requires supporting truth and justice. There are radical elements on both sides of the OWS issues who are interested in neither. It is their ambition to keep us engaged in rhetoric and argument.

    Let’s instead rebuild a damaged economy by taking responsibility for ourselves, our actions, and pouring our efforts into constructive solutions.

  • troll

    …nice posters Brandt

  • troll

    …what is there about truth and justice that justifies the use of chemical weapons on people engaged in non-violent civil disobedience? How did this become SOP and what purpose is served defending/excusing it?

  • Hi Troll,

    Thank you for your question.

    The truth is that the students at UC Davis engaged in an act of unlawful confinement. They willingly surrounded the police and refused to allow them egress. These students further threatened the police with indefinite confinement until the student demand was met.

    That demand was the release of individuals arrested for interfering with the police in the lawful execution of their duties.

    The justice is that no person can expect to be protected by law when they willfully disobey those laws. In this case, the tents at UC Davis were removed because it is illegal to camp in the park area.

    There is no need to defend what the police did. They acted with patience and courtesy throughout the incident. Indeed, spraying the students with pepper spray was far less severe than arresting them on the charge of unlawful confinement.

    Let’s also keep in mind that the students were warned at least twice that they were about to be sprayed. Their fellow students warned them it was coming, and rather than agreeing to allow the police to pass – those students shouted out advice for dealing with being doused in pepper spray.

    As you note, the police did follow SOP. They warned the crowd repeatedly before advancing to remove the tents. They were patient when surrounded and significantly outnumbered. The police warned students that they were about to doused with pepper spray.

    After the students were doused with pepper spray, it’s worth noting that other students occupied the empty spaces and continued to block police from leaving. This is provocative rather than peaceful action.

    In my coaching practice, I use the motto: Cranium Ex Rectum. I suggest we all pull our heads out of the dark, warm, comfy places they’re in and start working to build something positive.

    Bluntly – to hell with the politicians and bankers. The solution to a poor economy, unemployment and corruption is in our hands, it’s in our hearts and minds. Demanding the corrupt correct the corruption is an exercise in futility.

    Stop sitting around in parks with no message and no mission.

    Right now, today, I can point to a group of 40,000+ small, local, business owners who are growing and prospering. They have no magic wands or fairy dust. They simply have discipline, self-respect, and action.

  • Humbug.

  • Hi Roger,

    After reading your short comment, I visited your site.

    Here is a quote from your current blog post:
    “I’m ashamed to be an American. For fifty years, I had a love affair with this country, a passionate love affair. For all her faults, I kept on believing in her for she represented a promise, a bright future never realized before, the hope of humankind. No longer! This is the last draw. I have nothing in common with these people. They’re not my people anymore and it’s no longer my country. All allegiances are broken.”

    Roger, I am glad to know you are taking yourself out of the race. We need the whole-hearted spirit of entrepreneurs, rather than the glumness of disappointed bystanders.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Conrad –

    You seem to be of the opinion that most people who signed off on those subprime mortgages were wide-eyed idiots who didn’t know what they were getting into. You’re flat wrong.

    I bought into one of those subprime mortgages back when the real estate market was hot. Our house was valued at $420K (slightly above average for our county at the time) and all indications were that it was going to go higher – heck, there were bidding wars on houses in our area! We took the subprime mortgage because our credit history was not good. We were approved because we had an income of about $11K/month (and for a couple years was as high as $15K/month).

    THEN the Great Recession hit. Our income plummeted. It’s hard to pay $3500/month on a house if you don’t have enough left over for anything else. This past April we sold our only car, this past September we declared bankruptcy, and in October our house was foreclosed and sold on auction.

    IF YOU DIDN’T NOTICE, Conrad, there’s millions of people out there who COULD and DID afford their subprime mortgages…as long as they had jobs. But when the Great Recession hit and we started losing hundreds of thousands of jobs every month, well, it’s hard to pay that subprime mortgage when you’ve been laid off and the best thing you can get is a McJob…or did you notice when McDonald’s offered 30K jobs nationwide, and a million or so showed up to apply?

    Don’t get me wrong – I don’t feel sorry for myself at all, for mine was a business that went south as small businesses often do. We got very lucky and shifted locations and we’re still doing pretty good. But I well understand how a lot of those people out there with the OWS protests COULD and DID afford their mortgages…until their jobs went away and there were no good jobs to be had.

  • Wrong, Conrad, I haven’t taken myself out of the race. In fact, I’ve long made it my express purpose and objective to take you and yours out of the running.

  • I’m having trouble even getting a McJob at the moment.

    There’s an awful lot of “we have decided to pursue other candidates”. (Who are young, spotty and stupid and think the minimum wage is a bucketload.)

    Thankfully, my wife has a secure career and we are renting out the property we own, so we’re in no danger of getting into a pickle on our mortgage… yet.

  • troll

    Conrad – how about this take on the policemen’s choice to use chemical agents: the stylized (and ineffective for their alleged purpose of crowd control as the video shows) administration of torture agents whose use was developed as a method to combat direct action lockdowns has morphed into a ritual reaffirmation of the coercive (paternal/punishing) power monopoly of the State through their ubiquitous use against occupy protesters

  • Maurice

    Conrad, I like your can do attitude and enjoyed reading your article.

    Dr Dreadful – sorry for your predicament. I got laid off from my high paying engineering job at Micron Technology and also lost my house. Like you I could afford my $2200 a month payment easily until I lost my job.

    I collected unemployment for one month and decided to try other things. I started a couple of businesses and made good money but not enough to keep the house.

    My perspective has changed.

    Good luck to you.

  • Hi Glenn,

    Thank you for your comment.

    Yes, most people were wide-eyed idiots. The U.S. economy was riding the un-ending escalator into prosperity, and very few took an approach that considered the possibility of it ending.

    You’ve given some details of your own situation, so let’s take a look at what you’ve shared.

    With an annual household income of more than $120,000, you have more than double the average U.S. household income in 2010. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average household income in 2010 was $49,445 (PDF, pg 5). And yet you report having poor credit. This suggests you managed to overspend a sizeable income.

    The house you purchased was valued at $420,000 at the height of the real estate boom. It was also a higher-than-average value home for your county. Considering there were bidding wars happening on houses, and that the value was based on the height of the real estate boom, this suggests the house was significantly over-valued. Did you have an actual need for a house of this size?

    I have a friend who lives in a 12,000 square foot home. With him are his wife and three children, both sets of grandparents, and his brother, sister-in-law and their children. They have need of a large home.

    David also runs multiple business that are successful, and growing in this economy.

    Which brings me to the issue of having a job. You were unable to keep your home because you became unemployed.

    This may come as a shock, but to earn $100,000/year in your own business requires only 86 clients. Those 86 clients need only pay $97/month to yield an income of $100,104.

    So my question is: When you became unemployed, did you look for someone to come to your rescue with another job? Or did you go out and try to provide value to other people and get paid for it – a.k.a. being a business owner?

    I meet a lot of people when speaking and travelling. I am confident in saying that most people I meet are capable of providing $97 worth of value to 86 people each and every month. Their biggest obstacle to doing so is their own disbelief in their ability.

    Glenn, I do not – not for one second – believe you’re enjoying reading any of this. But I do recognize that you’re a business owner, and that means you’re able to look a hard truth in the eye.

    You say your business is doing fairly well, but not great. Okay. Are you willing to do the work necessary to change that?

    If you are, go to Dan Kennedy and become a member of GKIC. I get no referral fee, or compensation for sending you there. Dan was my first copywriting mentor, and every business owner implementing his advice is succeeding in this economy.

  • Hi Roger,

    Thank you for your reply.

    Take me out of the race? Why Roger, why would you wish ill to someone who is actively working and contributing to a healthy economy?

    Would you like to see everyone’s economic burden eased? Then tell the rich to keep their tax money, and instead share their expertise on how to generate income, invest and manage money.

    The key to a healthy economy is keeping money in motion. There is no need for more money, only that it be in motion.

    Try this example:
    Get 5 people together.
    Give each one a kitchen gadget – corkscrew, can opener, whatever
    The first person takes out a $5 bill and “purchases” the gadget from the person standing next to him.
    Continue until all 5 people have purchased a gadget worth $5.

    Notice that only 1 $5 bill was used, yet there was $25 worth of commerce completed, and everyone obtained value for their money.

    Money multiplies faster than bunnies. But only when it’s in motion.

    The economy will heal when people start spending money instead of sticking it in mattresses and hoarding it in gold.

  • Hi Dr. Dreadful,

    Thank you for your comment. I’m sad to know you’re in what seems to be a moderately comfortable situation.

    Far better to be hot or cold than lukewarm. Being comfortable is anathema to initiative.

    You are in an ideal position to find a business and develop it. I do, however, caution you about accepting advice from the cow-pattie gurus and self-proclaimed experts.

    As with Glenn, I recommend paying attention to Dan Kennedy. His advice is proven every day in thousands of businesses, including mine. Read the previous posts to see how little it takes to generate $100,000/year in income.

  • @14

    Just a retort, Conrad, think nothing or i5.

  • Hi Troll,

    Thank you for your reply. It always good to laugh at least once each day.

    The pepper spray was ineffective because the police exercised restraint. Had they been intent on clearing the crowd, they would have donned gas masks and showered everyone with pepper spray. They simply wanted to clear the sidewalk so they could leave.

    The students, however, were so filled crowd hysteria that they filled in the gap.

    You’ve never been in this type of situation, have you? You’re in a small unit, outnumbered and surrounded, knowing that at any point it could turn ugly and become intensely physical. Crowd have a nasty way of turning into an ugly mob.

    I’ve been there. I know what it’s like. It’s frightening because you don’t want to get hurt, and even worse is that you don’t want to hurt the people you’re sworn to protect. And no, I’m not a cop – never have been. I have, however, served in the military.

    All those student had to do was step aside and allow the police to leave. Instead they chose to break the law and hold the police hostage. They even made demands – just like any hostage takers.

    And all because one person – who does not appear to have been a student – wanted to get his jollies by manipulating the crowd. These students are neither heroes nor patriots. They’re lemmings who followed the lead of a coward.

  • Hi Maurice,

    Thank you for your comment, and your encouragement.

    Please do read the previous posts. As a business owner, you should pay attention to Dan Kennedy. Implementing his advice brings significant results.

    Implementation is the key element.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Conrad –

    You’re making a lot of assumptions in your reply, perhaps the most egregious of which is that a less-than-perfect credit rating equals irresponsibility.

    Conrad, in America the largest single cause of bankruptcy stems not from personal irresponsibility, but from medical expenses…and we’re the only first-world nation where anyone has to declare bankruptcy because they can’t pay their medical bills.

    The fact I just presented you should give you pause before you start making assumptions about someone’s poor credit rating.

    Furthermore, you’re forgetting that it takes money to run a business. You quote “86 customers to reach $100K income”, but that’s a rather trite reply, especially when one looks at all the businesses that went under in the Great Recession.

    And on top of all that, you’re apparently assuming that the $420K house we bought was solely for our own enjoyment. It wasn’t. Our business was taking care of medically-fragile children in our home. They were our Foster children – but we called it a business because we had to treat it as a business, between taking care of all the expenses, the maintenance, the training, the near-constant contact with the state workers and medical professionals, and managing the several nurses who worked in our home 22 hours per day to care for them…again, in our home. This means that in order to do this, we had to have a home with certain requirements – wheelchair access to a street (my county is very ‘hilly’), the children had to have their own bathroom and closets, and we needed to be able to physically separate their living quarters from ours and our own children’s living quarters. Why? A nurse awake and on site 22 hours every day, and trying to keep the smell and the commotion away from my own kids.

    Now looking at the assumptions you made above, I think it’s likely your mind is full of “well, what was he expecting” and “he could have done this or that”…but I’m making an assumption of my own, which is that you’ve probably never had this kind of situation. Maybe you did, but considering the fact that we’re one of a very few couples in the state who are able to do what we do for a long term, I’d say chances are really good that you haven’t done what we did…what we are still doing with one child who’s been with us for over a decade. Because of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, he has a g-tube, a trach, rods in his back, cleft palate, seizure disorders, developmentally-delayed, and is forever wheelchair-bound. I’ve got a lot more I could tell you, but I’ll leave it at that.

    We looked at well over a hundred houses before we found one that would suit our needs – and you get what you pay for. We could no longer pay for that house, and now we’re in a smaller house where we can take care of a maximum of two children…and we’re choosing to take care of only one. Why? Have this kind of 24/7 business for a while in your own home and you’ll find out. I’ll leave it at that.

    Okay? What I’m trying to tell you, Conrad, is to not make ASSUMPTIONS about people. Don’t try to sit back and Monday-morning quarterback other people’s lives. There’s millions of hard-working people out there who did not CHOOSE to lose their jobs.

    My oldest son has an MBA. The reason he’s ‘only’ $36K in debt in student loans is because he took his bachelor’s degree overseas but did his MBA stateside. And even with his MBA it’s taken him nearly two years to get a really serious bite on a job offer – we find out in the next two weeks if he’s getting it. But until we do find out, he’ll continue working as a caregiver wiping the poopy butt of our Foster child…and he’ll be glad to do it, because it’s a JOB.

  • Arch Conservative

    Glenn, some people that become foster parents do so solely for the purpose of collecting a government check and don’t really give a damn about the children. However if you are not one of those people and you’re sincere in your desire to provide a happy healthy home for some sick kids, then that is truly admirable.

    To be sure I’d rather not live in nation where the possibility that one could go bankrupt from having to pay for their own healthcare exists. The medical care in this country is some of the finest on the planet. The ability of the average citizen to pay for it is another story. Something needs to be done but I don’t really want to get into it in this comment. I just wanted to acknowledge that I too am aware of the problem.

    All that being said, it is also a fact that thousands of people across this nation experience financial distress and bankruptcy that is directly related to the poor choices they have made.

    Are you seriously going to deny the fact that many people in this nation buy a homes, autos, and other large ticket items that are obviously too expensive for them so they can feel better about themselves Glenn?

    Sociologists have actually come up with a term to describe our modern crass, American sense of materialism. It’s called affluenza, or “keeping up with the Jonses” if you prefer.

    Everyone’s story is different and yes good people do occasionally fall on very hard times through no fault of their own. But while others can acknowledge this Glenn, can you at least acknowledge that there are in fact too many greedy, moronic people out there who do not deserve our sympathy?

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Arch –

    You were actually being quite careful of what you were saying and how you were saying it in that comment, and it reflects well on you.

    Yes, there are many Foster parents – I’d even say ‘most’ – who do so mainly for the extra income. In fact, I think you’d find very, very few Foster parents (including us) who would do so for years for free. Think about that for a moment – it sounds callous and mercenary, I’m sure, but you will find close to zero Foster parents who will keep such kids in their houses for years, for free.

    Any social worker will tell you there’s two types of Foster kids who are hardest to place – the dangerous ones and the medically-fragile ones. We took the second group…and it’s anything but just sitting back and collecting a paycheck. Not only that, but unlike every other kind of Foster child, the medically-fragile ones require at least one of the Foster parents to be a professionally-licensed nurse…

    …and I can tell you by personal experience that NO nurse can do this by herself. Why? Each child requires not only many long hours of professional care…but they’re kids, too! One day my Darling called me up and told me that either I quit my GOOD job at the Post Office, or we give up the Foster kids – even with the nurses provided by the state, she couldn’t handle it by herself anymore. So our household took a $2300 pay cut so I could help my wife with our Foster kids.

    Arch, you’re absolutely right to be a little suspicious of a lot of Foster parents (see Michelle Bachmann)…but those who care for medically-fragile Foster kids for years on end are not your normal Foster parents…and every social worker knows it.

  • Igor

    14 – Conrad Hall: you put in $25 of free gadgets then seem surprised that there is $25 of commerce.


  • Igor

    Conrad: I looked at the video but didn’t see what you saw. Could you give us a time point?

  • troll

    I gave up on this thread when Conrad appealed to the concept of The Crowd drawing pretty inappropriate (imo) equivalences

  • Hi Igor,

    Thank you for your comments.

    Please give me a little more information about what I have claimed to see. Then I can help you find it in the video.

    Thank you.

  • Hi Troll,

    Thank you for your comment. However, I don’t understand it at all.

    What is “The Crowd,” and what are the inappropriate equivalences?

    Are you suggesting that the entire situation could have quickly escalated out of control? From my own experience, that is quite likely the precise thought that was running through the mind of the police commander when the students started chanting with foul language.

    Violent language is the precursor of violent acts.

    It’s a little too convenient that you denigrate the conversation as you exit.

  • Igor

    I looked at the video you referenced and couldn´t find where the Occupiers threatened the police.

    Can you please give the timeline? Where did the Occupiers block in the police, and where did the violent language occur?


  • Hi Igor,

    Thank you for the clarification.

    When watching the video, you did not notice the students having surrounded the police and telling them that the police would only be allowed to leave if they released the people they had arrested? The students blocking the police in constitutes almost the entire video.

    The violent language occurs when the students begin chanting “f*** the police, from Davis to Greece.” Fortunately, one member of the crowd recognised the destructive bent of the chant and called for it to stop.

  • Igor

    Can you give the time in minutes and seconds where you see that happening?

  • Hi Igor,

    Thank you for your question.

    No Igor. I am not going to sift through the video to find a time reference for you.

    You seem to have missed quite a bit of what’s in the video. My recommendation is that you watch it again without distraction.

  • While I agree that the police behaved in a professional manner throughout (there are numerous other countries where this video would not have lasted anywhere near 15 minutes and would have ended in a blur of batons), Conrad seems astonished that the protestors would not leave when the police asked them to.

    I think that was kind of the whole point.

  • Hi Dr. Dreadful,

    Thank you for your comment.

    To clarify, the police did ask the protesters to leave. The announcement at the beginning of the video warning protesters to leave was specifically directed at those in and around the tents.

    It does not surprise me that some of the students refused to leave, and ended up arrested. It also does not surprise me that the students chose to escalate the incident by surrounding and detaining the police.

    Youth have been taught that they are entitled to do as they please, when they please. Further, they have been taught it’s acceptable to fabricate a justification for what they are doing. After all, this is precisely the type of behavior exhibited by the banks and government – and is what they’re supposed to be protesting.

    That people are squawking over the students having been pepper sprayed is also not surprising. Outrage at people being disciplined is, as it were, all the rage these days.

    How dare the police do anything other than give in to the student demands, right? The police should simply have abandoned their position of authority and given in to the students. The professors claiming to teach them do it all the time.

    There is nothing surprising in this video, or the popular reaction to it.

    The protesters were there to demonstrate against the lies and deceit practiced by those they perceive as bad or evil. Yet they demonstrated precisely the same sort of behavior – disrespect for law and community – in spite of being treated with respect and restraint by the police.

    Let’s keep in mind that no one suffered any lasting injuries in this incident. As you correctly point out, Dr. Dreadful, there are many other places where those students would have found themselves struck with batons, hosed with a water cannon, and some in which they might have simply been shot.

    The police deserve far more credit for their performance than they are receiving.

  • We should note, Conrad, that while the police response at UC Davis was restrained and professional, that hasn’t been the case everywhere – particularly, by all accounts, in New York.

    And you misunderstand the motives of the protesters. Of course they didn’t move when they were asked to: they were protesting!

    A protester who says, “Yes, sir, right away, sir” when told “Please stop your protest and go away” isn’t much of a protester in my book.

    I’ll also hazard a guess, which I’m fairly confident is correct, that 99-100% of the protesters knew full well that they risked arrest or pepper spraying by not moving.

    That, again, was the point and is one of the main themes of OWS. Where there is a conflict between protection of property and protection of the people’s right to protest, the police response is always – always – to protect property.

    (It’s interesting that when Tea Partiers brought guns openly to their protests, police did nothing.

    An outside observer might almost be tempted to think that the Amendments to the US Constitution are numbered in order of precedence.)

  • Igor

    “It’s interesting that when Tea Partiers brought guns openly to their protests, police did nothing.”

    Suppose OWS people brought guns?

  • But of course we know what the difference is, Igor. The Tea Partiers had at least partial support from the Republican establishment, were well-financed, paid for their permits, and generally speaking, played by the rules.

    The whole point of OWS is not to play by the rules precisely because the rules suck. Which is why the police force has been brought to exact the maximum punishment allowable by law.

    You break the law, you must suffer the consequences.

  • Suppose OWS people brought guns?

    Ooooooooh boy.

  • A capital response.

  • Hi Dr. Dreadful,

    Thank you for your comment.

    The police were not there to remove the protesters. Their purpose was to have the camp removed. Only protesters who interfered with the removal of the tents were arrested.

    The reason for removing the camps is a simple one: they’re dirty places.

    I still maintain that the OWS movement is wasting its time and effort. Rather than moaning and groaning about what’s wrong, they should be focused on, and working toward, things that are right.

    For all the people who mope about crying “the rules suck” or “I can’t get ahead because ,” my response is “step out of the way and let the success oriented lead the way.”

    There are tens of thousands of business owners in the same group as me. We’re consistently working to expand our businesses, and we see this period in history as the greatest opportunity of our lifetimes.

    It is truly interesting that this thread has turned toward the idea of carrying guns to a protest. Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent (Issac Asimov).

    In comparing OWS with the Tea Party, this thread has hit on the key difference demonstrated by OWS.

    The Tea Party is well organized, working toward goals, and consequently well financed. Whereas the OWS has no specific agenda, therefore can pursue no goal, and lacks the credibility to raise any capital interest. And this is in spite of the mutual interest demonstrated by people such as Warren Buffet.

    The OWS movement is comprised mostly of people who want to sing and scream, get their 30 seconds of fame, then go back to their personal brand of quiet desperation. The entire group should follow the enterprising example of the folks in Brooklyn who are setting up a television studio in a vacant building.

    My earnest hope is that this group of OWS participants leads the way to capitalist effort for the entire movement.

  • troll

    Conrad – what crowds did you learned about crowd behavior from during your military service?

    here’s some more video of the event that fills in some time gaps – note police arresting pepper sprayed protesters…charges against them were subsequently dropped

  • troll

    also Conrad – have you studied the short and longterm effects of pepper spray? If not what are you basing your claim of not lasting effects on?

  • troll
  • Conrad, again you miss the point. The very visibility, stationary nature and semi-permanence of tent camps is exactly why they were chosen as a form of protest. It brings their occupiers’ First Amendment right to petition the government for a redress of grievances into direct conflict with the university’s (city’s, county’s, state’s, whoever) Fourth Amendment right to be secure in their property… which belongs to the people in the first place.

    Roger put it very well in #35: “The whole point of OWS is not to play by the rules precisely because the rules suck.” If the Founding Fathers had played by the rules, you’d still be able to get some decent tea in this country. 😉

    And one could argue that the Tea Party hasn’t achieved anything except to bring the political process in DC to a grinding halt.

  • Igor

    The police, IMO, demonstrated that they have made a clear choice in favor of the Tea Party and against OWS. The Police represent the Establishment, and the Tea Party is financed by the establishment (Koch) and seeks to increase it’s power.

  • The more Conrad types the more he reveals what little he knows

  • troll

    …if you’re into the Gandhi thing of trying to make the system work against itself there’s this response – I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for justice to come out of the DOJ though

    and in any case we’re sure to get an objective picture of what happened from the Kroll investigation

    I suspect that Pike and maybe a few others will be singled out for lessons in ‘personal responsibility’…

  • I suspect that Pike and maybe a few others will be singled out for lessons in ‘personal responsibility’…

    Anything beyond that and we probably get into the realm of sociological theorizing, which the investigators will no doubt say is beyond their scope.