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#OccupyTheCourts Gets Tense in Washington D.C.

  1. Corporations Are Not People – End Corporate Personhood – Occupy The Courts
  2. Today is the day of #OccupytheCourts! We the People must expel the influence of big money from our elections. We must evict corporate persons from Washington and occupy our democracy. Stand up and join fellow Americans (real people flesh and bones!) at a federal courthouse near you today.
  3. In Denver:
  4. In Portland:
  5. RT @pamhogeweide: #occupythecourts @OccupyPdx #opdx ppl are SO ready to MARCH and speak with our feet! CORPORATIONS are NOT People! #MovetoAmend
  6. And in Washington D.C.:
  7. RT @TheOther99: BREAKING: #J20 protesters erupt in cheers as they run up the Supreme Court steps past Police.. #J20 #OccupytheCourts #OWS
  8. Protesters Rush Steps of US Supreme Court
  9. TENT MONSTER? RT @aubreyjwhelan: There is a protester here legitimately wearing a tent. #occupydc
  10. The mood changes soon, however.
  11. RT @NinaNerdFace: Two undercovers punched protesters which started all this. We have pics. We can haz dox? #occupydc #occupythecourts
  12. Cops have protesters pinned to the ground at #SupremeCourt and are issuing arrests. Reports of 4 arrested so far #occupythecourts
  13. Supreme Court Police violence
  14. Police brutality, Arrests, Undercovers Unmasked outside SCOTUS
  15. RT @vtknitboy: RT @sickjew: High-res photos being taken of plainclothes cops for future reference #ows #j20 #occupythecourts (live at ustre.am/EqY3)
  16. So I get to say I danced with a riot cop today. He held my elbow as I walked backwards down the steps bc the guy behind me wouldn’t move
  17. RT @KyleGrainger: RT @NBCNews: Supreme Court says 13 people were arrested today during #OccupyTheCourts demonstration.
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#OccupyTheCourts Gets Tense in Washington D.C.

  1. Corporations Are Not People – End Corporate Personhood – Occupy The Courts
  2. Today is the day of #OccupytheCourts! We the People must expel the influence of big money from our elections. We must evict corporate persons from Washington and occupy our democracy. Stand up and join fellow Americans (real people flesh and bones!) at a federal courthouse near you today.
  3. In Denver:
  4. In Portland:
  5. RT @pamhogeweide: #occupythecourts @OccupyPdx #opdx ppl are SO ready to MARCH and speak with our feet! CORPORATIONS are NOT People! #MovetoAmend
  6. And in Washington D.C.:
  7. RT @TheOther99: BREAKING: #J20 protesters erupt in cheers as they run up the Supreme Court steps past Police.. #J20 #OccupytheCourts #OWS
  8. Protesters Rush Steps of US Supreme Court
  9. TENT MONSTER? RT @aubreyjwhelan: There is a protester here legitimately wearing a tent. #occupydc
  10. The mood changes soon, however.
  11. RT @NinaNerdFace: Two undercovers punched protesters which started all this. We have pics. We can haz dox? #occupydc #occupythecourts
  12. Cops have protesters pinned to the ground at #SupremeCourt and are issuing arrests. Reports of 4 arrested so far #occupythecourts
  13. Supreme Court Police violence
  14. Police brutality, Arrests, Undercovers Unmasked outside SCOTUS
  15. RT @vtknitboy: RT @sickjew: High-res photos being taken of plainclothes cops for future reference #ows #j20 #occupythecourts (live at ustre.am/EqY3)
  16. So I get to say I danced with a riot cop today. He held my elbow as I walked backwards down the steps bc the guy behind me wouldn’t move
  17. RT @KyleGrainger: RT @NBCNews: Supreme Court says 13 people were arrested today during #OccupyTheCourts demonstration.

#Occupy Heads to Washington D.C.

  1. The 2 party system is failed. Vote against both sides. They try to keep us divided to continue their benefits. Fire them all. #J17
  2. #J17 The avg cost of a Senate seat is $8.5 million. $ is overwhelmingly from the financial sector. tinyurl.com/66xvxo #ConnectTheDots
  3. #j17 #occupycongress democracy begins (not ends) at the ballot box.
  4. A few hundred marching from McPherson now to join the convergence. #j17 #occupycongress
  5. Hundreds chanting outside Congress. Cops erecting barricades. #j17
  6. The fences on west front have been ripped down. #J17
  7. police is starting to push people back from #J17 #OWS
  8. #j17 #ows in DC chanting: the 1st amendment is my permit!
  9. Six cops to take a 60 yr old man to the ground! Police brutality badge # 3081. #j17
  10. At this point, the growing crowd has moved to the west front lawn of the Capital.
  11. This crowd continues to grow. Easily over 1000 now. A “Voltron” GA is organizing soon (inter-occupational GA). #j17
  12. Retired Philadelphia police captain Ray Lewis is spotted on the non-permitted side of the Capital lawn.
  13. Police are not letting Captain Ray come over to us. #j17
  14. I couldn’t see over the crowd but @DustinSlaughter says he believes the 2 arrestees were taken into the Civil Disturbance Unit van
  15. @punkboyinsf confirms a total of 3 arrests so far. #j17
  16. One takeaway from #J17 #OccupyCongress – We should prolly find a way 2 make #Occupy more appealing to more “meat eaters” 🙂 #OccupyEveryone
  17. About 30 protesters took balcony area, dropping a banner before police swarmed up the steps. Others cont. inside. No arrests. #Rayburn #j17
  18. A protester reportedly had a seizure at Rayburn. #j17
  19. #Rayburn is trending in DC. #j17 #OccupyCongress
  20. Reports that the west lawn of the capital is being surrounded. We’re heading over to confirm. #j17 #OccupyCongress
  21. Heading back towards congressional offices. Apparently protesters have moved on from #Rayburn. #j17
  22. Metro police apparently trying to scare people off of the street, create confusion. Motorcycles zipping down sidewalks. #j17
  23. “@Re_Occupy: One of the largest acts of “civil disobedience” on steps of the U.S. Supreme Court youtu.be/BS_BJhL82YI #OccupyCongress #J17”
  24. Occupy Congress: the evening march and the storming of the supreme court
  25. The march has taken the entire width of Constitution Ave. A man in a tent sprinted right by me. #j17
  26. Occupy Congress. Stop the march to read the First Amendment.
  27. Veterans at White House fence lead mic check: “Today is the first day of the revolution! American empire is no more!” ustream.tv/occupyfreedomla
  28. #J17 Occupy Congress March Pt 7 Amarillo 13 OakFoSho January 17, 2012 Washington DC
  29. @SabzBrach and I spotted a few riot cops on periphery of White House rally. Not sure what to make of it. They didn’t want photos taken. #j17
  30. The rally is thinning out. No tension in the air. I think this riot gear is simply protocol. #j17
  31. The presence of riot cops makes sense now. I had not heard of this incident until later that night.
  32. @FearDept Occupiers said the smoke was “incense” but we’re not falling for that one, probably illegal narcotics or bombs #FIGHTPEACEMONGERS
  33. Approx. 50 remaining at the capital. I’m about to call it a night and head back to McPherson. #j17
  34. #j17 kudos to DC cops. If this had been NY we’d have had cracked skulls & mace. Turns out the world doesn’t end if police r civil. #OWS

The Rain and the Reckoning: William Rivers Pitt on the State of Occupy

Occupy Wall Street's December 17th march to re-occupy vacant space owned by Trinity Wall Street church. Photo by Dustin Slaughter.

Editor’s note: This beautiful piece by William Rivers Pitt sums up where, I feel, the Occupy movement stands currently, and captures it with pure poetry. Enjoy.

“…and soon now we shall go out of the house and go into the convulsion of the world, out of history into history and the awful responsibility of Time.” – Robert Penn Warren

Dewey Square, the patch of earth in the shadow of the Federal Reserve Building and One Financial Center that Occupy Boston protesters called home from September to December, is empty now. The same can be said for the original Occupy space at UC Davis, where a dozen kneeling and defenseless protesters were hosed down with pepper spray, and for Oakland, where the police rioted and very nearly killed a two-tour Marine Corps veteran of Iraq. Occupy encampments sprang up in hundreds of cities in all fifty states of the union over these last four months. Many, if not most, are gone now, done in by police invasion or uncooperative weather, or both.

You may have noticed the sudden lack of attention paid to the Occupy movement, now that the gendarmes of the status quo have wielded their truncheons and rolled up the encampments like so many windowshades. Nightly reports by the “mainstream” news media about Occupy actions all across the country have dwindled to almost nil, and for those so disposed, this is a good thing. The roused rabble have been crushed and scattered, and all this talk of inequality and justice can finally be replaced with what has for so long now been the real American anthem: everything is fine, nothing to see here, your betters are in control, go back to work. The uprising has been quelled, it would seem, and it is time to consign the Occupy movement to the dustbin of history.

Nothing, but nothing, but nothing, could be further from the truth.

This is not over. Not by a long, long chalk.

It is not over because the American conversation has been irrevocably altered in ways both subtle and sublime. For those predisposed to rocking the boat, the Occupy movement has provided an opportunity to give voice to the overarching sense that matters in America have gone horribly wrong: uncounted thousands dead in a war of choice that provided a wonderful opportunity for the transfer of hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars into the bloated coffers of “defense” contractors with friends in high places; billions more stolen in broad daylight by Wall Street gangsters; billions more given back by way of “bailouts” – read: socialism – to these same gangsters thanks to the aforementioned high-placed friends; no jobs, and no jobs, and no jobs, because it is more important to score political points than it is to ease the suffering of millions.

For those not immediately predisposed to boat-rocking – the fathers who lay awake at night worrying about mortgage payments, the mothers with sick children who live in terror of the mailman bringing more medical bills, the retail workers making a shamefully substandard minimum wage who are holding on by their fingernails – such highblown talk has always been drowned out by the necessities and requirements of the immediate present. Who has time to camp out in Zuccotti Park when there are bills to pay, mouths to feed and time-cards to punch?

And yet…and yet…

And yet those same hard-working over-burdened Americans who have been thus far unable to take up the Occupy banner – who, in many instances, dismiss the whole thing with a contemptuous “Get a job, hippie” – are the same Americans who have had a bug put in their ear, and the buzzing of that bug will not go away. Four months of national dialogue about fair taxation, burden-sharing and the overwhelming power of the corporate state have done their work, and done it well. The conversation in America about wealth and power has been redirected: instead of blindly worshipping the power and prestige of these Sheriffs of Nottingham, who drink the sweat and blood of the toilers for their sustenance and entertainment, a great many people have been made to remember Robin Hood, and what the genuine definition of fairness, equality and patriotism really is.

The story of America on the eve of this new year can be summed up by the old tale of the two donkeys who meet on the road. The first donkey is fresh as a daisy, unencumbered, brushed and bright-eyed. The second donkey is tired and broken, sad-eyed and swaybacked from the monstrous burden he carries. The first donkey looks at the second donkey and says, “Boy, that’s quite a load you’re carrying.” The second donkey looks at the first donkey in exhausted confusion and replies, “What load?”

Get it? The second donkey had been carrying his burden for so long that he no longer even realizes it is there, though his back breaks from the strain. For generations now, that has been the sorry lot of the 99%, but it will not be so in 2012; after carrying the load for so long that they didn’t even see it anymore – a fact that suits the 1% right down to the ground, mind you – a vast majority of Americans have finally looked up from their fruitless toiling, seen the unfair and over-burdensome load they carry, and recognized the fundamental injustice that has left them as beaten and swaybacked as that donkey on the road.

Occupy is not over. We come now to another winter of our discontent, and though the tents and signs and shouts of the movement have been momentarily subdued, they will return. Spring is coming, the rocks are already rolling down the mountainside, and while there is still time for the pebbles to catch up, gravity is an absolute. Sooner or later, those rocks will reach the reckoning that has been so long in coming, and when that happens, nothing in this country will be the same again.

With Spring comes the rain, and the rain is coming to this dry and thirsty land.

The rain is coming.

By God and sonny Jesus, the rain is coming.

This op-ed was originally written by the inimitable William Rivers Pitt for Truthout. The Project is republishing this under Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 United States License.


“Costs of War” Sheds Light on a Troubled Iraq

  1. “Iraq since 2003 represents everything that we want to avoid in the Arab world – foreign invasions, simplistic American political engineering, sharp internal polarization, ethnic cleansing and warfare…” – Rami G. Khouri, author and journalist
  2. MT @franyafranya: Candidate #Obama: Iraq a “dumb war.” As Pres, he lauds it uncritically as a “success.” — #Iraq Veterans Against the War
  3. Mary Trotochaud was the AFSC country representative from 2004-2007:
  4. Mary Trotochaud, #AFSC rep to #iraq ’04-’07: in ’03, ample evidence of cluster bombs #CostsOfWarConf
  5. Ending the Use of Cluster Munitions
  6. Rick McDowell up next. Organized 15 #AFSC trips to #iraq, lead delegation of nobel laureates. #CostsOfWarConf
  7. McDowell on official Washington’s attitude to the issue of past sanctions on Iraq:
  8. McDowell: Amb. Albright said that deaths of many 1000s of children from #iraq sanctions is a price that is “worth it.” #CostsOfWarConf
  9. Madeleine Albright Defends Mass-Murder of Children
  10. McDowell: US Military officer of #Fallujah: “Satan is there, and we aim to get him.” Speaking now of rampant birth defects. #CostsOfWarConf
  11. Riz Khan – Falluja’s birth defects
  12. Raed Jarrar up next. Perhaps the only organizer to conduct door-to-door survey of #iraq civilian casualties. #CostsOfWarConf
  13. CORRECTION: Typographical error. Jarrar served as in-country director for CIVIC Worldwide, “the only door-to-door casualty survey group in post-war Iraq.”
  14. Jarrar: Many iraqis feel that Gulf War and ’03 invasion two phases of same war. #CostsOfWarConf
  15. Jarrar: Over 1 million iraqis killed, 5 million displaced. Approx population 25 million. #CostsOfWarConf
  16. Jarrar: 4-5 million orphans in #iraq due to war. Over 600K living in the streets. #CostsOfWarConf
  17. Jarrar: Mother w PhD’s daughter illiterate b/c they are afraid to go to school. “Scary vision of future for #iraq.” #CostsOfWarConf
  18. Jarrar: US influence in #iraq NOT ending. 16K personnel staying. Half armed contractors. Largest embassy in “human history.” #CostsOfWarConf
  19. Jarrar: Cont’d US involvement will cost US taxpayers “billions.” #iraq #CostsOfWarConf
  20. Jarrar: War ending, moral legal obligations not. Failure to compensate mistakes crimes won’t create good relationship #CostsOfWarConf #iraq
  21. Celeste Zappala is a Gold Star Mother for Peace. Her son was killed in Iraq in April of 2004 while protecting a unit looking for Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD).
  22. Celeste Zappala up next. Son, Sherwood Baker, was PA Guard member. He was involved in protecting “WMD” sites. #CostsOfWarConf
  23. Zappala: “Never before have suicides surpassed combat deaths” before #iraq war. “Utterly bankrupt morality” of this war. #CostsOfWarConf
  24. Zappala: 26% of children suffering from malnutrition now. 50% unemployment. “US has walked away from this country.” #CostsOfWarConf #iraq
  25. McDowell summarizes the aftermath of the Iraq War:
  26. McDowell: Effects of #iraq war will be felt for generations to come. #CostsOfWarConf

A Glimpse Back at Occupy Wall Street’s #D17

  1. RT @DustinSlaughter: RT @brookejarvis: “…the best way to defend the First Amendment is to use it.” bit.ly/rqhkji #OWS #d17
  2. RT @DustinSlaughter: Word going around: 3pm may be “go time.” #D17 #OWS
  3. RT @DustinSlaughter: Arrests are underway. Hard to estimate how many at this point. #D17 #OWS
  4. MT @DustinSlaughter 30-40 arrsts aftr protestrs scaled fence 2 @TrinityWallSt proprty. Church holds ovr $10 billion in real estate #D17 #OWS
  5. RT @DustinSlaughter: Mic check: A new march is heading to the house of the Rector of @TrinityWallSt. “He kicked us out!” #D17 #OWS
  6. RT @dustinslaughter: MASSIVE march towards @TrinityWallSt rector’s home. “Bloomberg! Beware! #ZuccottiPark is everywhere!” #D17 #OWS
  7. At this point the march has split up into as many as three different routes.
  8. @DustinSlaughter can you pass the message to keep moving and not be kettled? #occupyportland tactics: you’re worth so much more mobile! #d17
  9. RT @DustinSlaughter: Confirmed. RT @johnknefel: lucky @mollyknefel & I escape kettle on 29th& 7th. Lay low. Mass arrests expected. #ows #d17
  10. RT @DustinSlaughter: RT @johnknefel: Getting reports Nypd is breaking up Times Sq action. #ows #d17
  11. RT @DustinSlaughter: Hearing reports that one person was tasered and arrested in Times Square. #D17 #OWS
  12. RT @DustinSlaughter: RT @RockDocLV: RT @RDevro: My colleague, a credentialed cameraman, was punched in the kidney three times. #D17 #ows
  13. RT @DustinSlaughter: RT @OccupyVideo: 55 #OccupyWallStreet protesters arrested today, including clergy #ows #d17 ow.ly/82OTX
  14. RT @DustinSlaughter: MT @OccupyWallStNYC: #D17 = A reminder that our founding fathers did not prescribe permits, press passes & free speech zones. #ows

Occupy Philadelphia, Others Hold “Scrooges” Accountable in Day Long Caroling Tour

  1. Gov. Corbett continues to make cuts to #PA Budget in 2012. post-gazette.com/pg/11355/…
  2. Budget bleak for next year, cuts must be made now, says Corbett’s Budget Secy. bit.ly/tP7rYb But here’s an idea – tax the #drillers!
  3. Caroling: “On the 4th day of xmas, the Gov gave to me #voterID…” #OccupyPhilly #OPScroogeTour #ows
  4. RT @bobb529: @GovernorCorbett needs to be brought on the carpet for voter suppression redistricting #OPScroogeTour #OccupyPhilly #ows
  5. Later in the day, @OccupyPhilly meets up with SEIU members to begin second half of the “Scrooge” caroling tour.
  6. RT @OccupyPhilly: #OccupyPhilly Mega-Caroling Action Tour Super Extravaganza! 5pm at Rittenhouse! fb.me/Yhg4xcsr #OPScroogeTour #ows
  7. #OccupyPhilly pays a visit to Presbyterian Inspired Life, union-busting nonprofit nursing home. CEO made $400K. #OPScroogeTour #ows #1u
  8. http://lockerz.com/s/167209303 After #OccupyPhilly pays visit to union-busting nursing home CEO house, cont … m.tmi.me/jEJCz
  9. “We r here at X-mas Village 2 say the holiday isnt about consumerism to remind all about a #homeless family in a manger.” #OccupyPhilly #ows