Is corporate greed really the problem? Some think the correct frame for the Wall Street protest should be against the rise of privately held government. I see these as two different but equally serious issues.
The following 8 pointers are from the Florida Progressive Coalition Blog
1. It's all about attracting more and more people. The way we make change is by gathering together so many people that they can't ignore us.
2. Get information about everyone who shows up. We have to be able to contact people for future events and actions.
3. Give people something to do. Protests and rallies are nice. They get people fired up and they can get some media attention. But they aren't enough. We have to take those people who show up to the rallies and give them something concrete to do that will make a difference.
4. We all, every one of us, have to know what we're talking about. The number one way to lose momentum is for us to allow the media to marginalize us as kooks or crazies. If we are all educated and we only give the media educated, thoughtful responses, then we take away the opposition's major weapon.
5. We have to have a coherent message. The media and the opposition are already trying to paint us as having no real point. If they succeed in convincing the public that is true, the movement will die off. People will go home and nothing will change.
6. We have to walk a thin line when it comes to the law. Civil disobedience is a valid tool and it changes the world. But not if it is violent or disrespectful of the very people the 1 percent are already screwing over. We have to be better than the other side, not fall into their tactics or fall for the traps they are setting for us. And keep in mind that law enforcement and other people who may appear to be our opposition at times are getting screwed over by the 1 percent, too. We should be recruiting them, not antagonizing them.
7. At the end of the day, when the protest is over, we have to realize that just showing up and protesting and occupying isn't enough. It is an amazing start, but protests are never successful if they aren't coupled with actions that can change the world. Lawsuits and elections are the key tools in American history (and beyond) that have changed the way the system worked and created progress. We have to use the mass mobilizations as a way to get politicians elected that will fight the 1 percent (like Alan Grayson and Bernie Sanders, for instance) and we have to fund lawsuits that will enforce laws that already exist that protect our rights. Without these tools we can't win.
8. We have to win the media battle. This isn't going to be easy, because the 1 percent owns the media. But they don't own the Internet. Well they do, but they can't stop us from using it. And we have to use it well enough to force the rest of the media to pay attention and do the right thing. When a reporter lies about how many people were at an event, we need to use the web to tell the truth. When a reporter tries to spin a story to undercut what we're doing, we need to use the web to tell the truth. They won't do it unless we force them to.
From Buzzflash - Senator Bernie Sanders offers Six Proposals that can help form a Consensus.
1) If a financial institution is too big to fail, it is too big to exist.
2) Put a cap on credit card interest rates to end usury.
3) The Federal Reserve needs to provide small businesses in America with the same low-interest loans it gave to foreign banks.
4) Stop Wall Street oil speculators from artificially increasing gasoline and heating oil prices.
5) Demand that Wall Street invest in the job-creating productive economy, instead of gambling on worthless derivatives.
6) Establish a Wall Street speculation fee on credit default swaps, derivatives, stock options and futures.
Rolling Stone’s Matt Taibbi has come up with five action items for OWS, which he shares with Keith Olbermann in this clip from Thursday’s episode of “Countdown."
Seven suggestions from Shoes4Industry.
1. Lower the SS retirement age to 62, early retirement to age 60. Free up middle and upper management and lower positions for younger, healthier, less expensive workers.
2. Remove the cap on Social Security contributions to pay for new and future retirees.
3. Limit consumer credit interest rates to 15% max. This will reduce consumer debt and promote consumption without costing taxpayers a cent.
4. Lower the eligibility age of Medicare to zero. It’s an insurance (not a health care) program. Younger, healthier contributors will dramatically drive down cost and increase savings. Employers will be out of the health care business.
5. Rescind the Bush tax cuts immediately on those making over $250K and increase the rates on those making over $1M+ to Reagan era rates.
6. Rewrite underwater mortgages by “splitting the difference” between current market value and what is owed, (4% -30 yr. fixed) both parties take a hit, homeowners have incentive to stay and pay and banks are not stuck with vacant, non- performing assets.
7. Make all educational expenses tax deductible.
Who's Shoes4Industry? I don't know, but I found myself in agreement with most of them. But this list could grow very rapidly. 8. Shift the American war machine into neutral. 9. Public financing for all election campaigns. 10. Tax all capital gains as regular income....
What Do You Want For Your Country? A few "99 percent” members know what they want, and in the video below nine of them tell you in just a few words.
Here's an easy read with videos by J. Simpson at Blogging Blue about the importance of OWS and why the right will do anything to stop it.
Lastly, here's a barf bag of toxic nonsense about a Rockford (Il) Tea Party counter-protest of OWS published at the Rockford Star. If you must ...