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And, yes, I DO take it personally: 10/02/2011 - 10/09/2011
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And, yes, I DO take it personally

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Killing al Awlaki "legal" only if it wasn't possible to take him alive

charlie savage in the nyt...
The Obama administration’s secret legal memorandum that opened the door to the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, the American-born radical Muslim cleric hiding in Yemen, found that it would be lawful only if it were not feasible to take him alive, according to people who have read the document.


The secret document provided the justification for acting despite an executive order banning assassinations, a federal law against murder, protections in the Bill of Rights and various strictures of the international laws of war, according to people familiar with the analysis. The memo, however, was narrowly drawn to the specifics of Mr. Awlaki’s case and did not establish a broad new legal doctrine to permit the targeted killing of any Americans deemed to pose a terrorist threat.

The Obama administration has refused to acknowledge or discuss its role in the drone strike that killed Mr. Awlaki last month and that technically remains a covert operation. The government has also resisted growing calls that it provide a detailed public explanation of why officials deemed it lawful to kill an American citizen, setting a precedent that scholars, rights activists and others say has raised concerns about the rule of law and civil liberties.

But the document that laid out the administration’s justification — a roughly 50-page memorandum by the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel, completed around June 2010 — was described on the condition of anonymity by people who have read it.

The legal analysis, in essence, concluded that Mr. Awlaki could be legally killed, if it was not feasible to capture him, because intelligence agencies said he was taking part in the war between the United States and al Qaeda and posed a significant threat to Americans, as well as because Yemeni authorities were unable or unwilling to stop him.

The memorandum, which was written more than a year before Mr. Awlaki was killed, does not independently analyze the quality of the evidence against him.

The administration did not respond to requests for comment on this article.

of course, they don't want to comment... they'd be commenting on a crime...

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Congress, that mausoleum of democracy

a quote i simply could not resist...

this one ain't bad either...

[W]e are denying the consent of the governed to the present political class, and that millions of people already recognize that corporate CEOs are the unelected government.


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An Air Force officer gives his unvarnished opinion of the DADT repeal

intolerance won't go away, it'll just go underground...
I also had the distastefull [sic] duty of delivering the mandatory 'Repeal of Don't Ask, Don't Tell' brief, and ensuring documentation of same for 100% of the squadron. Definitely one of those 'salute smartly, and carry out your orders' kind of assignments.

for obvious reasons, i can't reveal the source... i do know, however, that he flies predator drone missions...

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Friday, October 07, 2011

Acapulco photoblogging from Wednesday and Friday

i'm taking a little break in a place i haven't been for a long, long time... here's two pics from the place i'm staying in old acapulco on the cliffs right over the ocean...

from my bedroom window...


sunset from my balcony...


and, in case you're wondering about the current state of tourism in mexico given all the recent goings-on, here's an article i ran across from a few days ago...
Come On in, the Water’s Fine

Never mind the beheadings, the kidnappings, the mass graves. Mexico wants its tourists back.

the hotel referenced in the first paragraph of the article, los flamingos, is approximately 5 blocks up the street from the house i'm staying at...

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Naomi Klein speaking at Occupy Wall Street

she had a lot of good things to say which you can read for yourself here... her closing words are what stuck with me...
We have picked a fight with the most powerful economic and political forces on the planet. That’s frightening. And as this movement grows from strength to strength, it will get more frightening. Always be aware that there will be a temptation to shift to smaller targets—like, say, the person sitting next to you at this meeting. After all, that is a battle that’s easier to win.

Don’t give in to the temptation. I’m not saying don’t call each other on shit. But this time, let’s treat each other as if we plan to work side by side in struggle for many, many years to come. Because the task before will demand nothing less.

Let’s treat this beautiful movement as if it is most important thing in the world. Because it is. It really is.

it truly gives me hope to hear encouragement like that from someone like naomi klein who is someone i believe really "gets it"... that's why i've been posting comments from the likes of joe stiglitz and noam chomsky... the voices for this kind of a movement definitely need to be the voices of those who "get it"...

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Who borrowed more from the Fed than anybody else...? Dexia... And it's ready to implode again...

c'mon, house of cards... collapse already...!

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5 key points that weigh heavily in favor of Occupy Wall Street

one thing that becomes readily apparent in all the reading i've been doing about occupy wall street is just how badly people want it to succeed and just how desperately people have been waiting for something just like this to come along...

robert borosage...

1. Moral clarity

Occupy Wall Street has no policy agenda, but it has utter moral clarity. The demonstrators have built an island of democracy in the belly of Wall Street. The bankers looking down on them would be on the street had not taxpayers bailed them out. And now they are confronted with students sinking under student debt with no jobs, homeowners who are underwater and can't find mortgage relief, workers desperate for work.

No one is confused about the message. Wall Street got bailed out; Main Street was abandoned. The top 1% rigs the rules and pockets the rewards. And 99% get sent the bill for the party they weren't even invited to.

2. Non violent discipline

That moral clarity was dramatized when the demonstrators stayed disciplined in the face of police provocation, including pepper spray in the face. The movement did not begin to sweep the country until people saw the police protecting Wall Street's banksters by assaulting peaceful protestors. Suddenly this wasn't a disorganized, rag tag gathering. These were citizens under attack for exercising their rights. That struck a powerful moral chord.

3. A Rising Protest

Across the country, people have responded to this clarity. Unemployed kids rallied to their side. White-collar workers stopped by for lunch. Suburbanites came in to share. On Wall Street, Liberty Square became a tourist center.

Unions and national progressive organizations marched in support, without pretending to speak for the demonstrators. For progressives, this surge of protest began building months ago, when thousands of people rallied to take over the capitol building in Madison, Wisconsin to protest Gov. Scott Walker's attempt to crush worker rights. It built over the summer as thousands turned up at town meetings and sobered legislators with their demand for jobs, not cuts. The Washington Post suggested that unions and national organizers were resentful of Occupy Wall Street, but in fact most were buoyed by the energy unleashed, the moral challenge posed.

4. Political Steamroller

Pundits dismiss Occupy Wall Street for not having a clear agenda. They are told to turn their protests into political demands. Some offer suggestions of what they should advocate -- "infrastructure investment" says Paul Krugman, a speculation tax on banks, home mortgage relief. The press wonders if Occupy will become the left-wing Tea Party and run candidates in elections, as if left-wing Koch brothers were orchestrating the protests.

But this is silly. Occupy Wall Street is already a political steamroller. Without an agenda, without an electoral operation, without a slate of candidates, if it continues to grow, it will force every national politician to decide whose side he or she is on. Are you with the banks or with the 99%? And prove it. Reporters will insure the question gets posed; voters will be interested in the answer.


5. It's Only Just Begun

No one can predict what happens to Occupy Wall Street, but the public protests have just begun. When the Civil Rights Movement took off, it too faced many of the same criticisms. It had too many demands. Its priorities were unclear. Did it want only to overturn legal segregation? Why was King going to Chicago? Why was he talking about poverty, and not just about equal rights? How dare he talk about the war?


Movements aren't tidy. They aren't organized. They unleash energy. They inspire ordinary people to leave their daily routines and do extraordinary things. They inspire; they insult; they mortify. They disrupt business as usual. And if they touch a chord, they grow, and they force politicians and citizens to decide.


Will this movement be a factor in the 2012 elections? It already is. Will it make clear demands? It already has. Whose side are you on? Wall Street or kids in the street? The top 1% or the 99%? It doesn't get clearer than that.

i'm eager to see it continue and grow...

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Tthe global financial elite probably pose more of a menace to society than known psychopaths

i've always been convinced that advancement into the corporate, financial elite is a matter of being rewarded for how viciously you can pursue your self interest and how badly you can damage your competitors... i think there's a fine line between some of these top guys and serial killers... it's all about honing the predatory instinct... unfortunately, our society has enshrined that kind of behavior and told the rest of us that it's worthy of emulation... maybe we should take another look...


What makes individual stockbrokers blow billions in financial markets with criminal trading schemes? According to a new study conducted at a Swiss university, it may be because share traders behave more recklessly and are more manipulative than psychopaths.

david sirota...
Now comes a new study from Switzerland’s University of St. Gallen showing that the most successful of the global financial elite probably pose more of a menace to society than known psychopaths.

As the website Newser reported, the researchers “pitted a group of stockbrokers against a group of actual psychopaths in various computer simulations and intelligence tests and found that the money men were significantly more reckless, competitive, and manipulative.” Even more striking, the researchers note that achieving overall success was less important to the stock speculators than the sadistic drive “to damage their opponents.”

The findings build on similar research in the recent past. In 1996, investigators at Glasgow Caledonian University discovered connections between psychopathy and successful financial speculation, concluding that “with the right parenting, (psychopaths) can become successful stockbrokers instead of serial killers.” Likewise, in 2004, researchers at the University of British Columbia reacted to similar findings and created a test to help firms detect “corporate psychopaths” within their ranks. That same year, the award-winning documentary “The Corporation” used World Health Organization metrics to show that if companies really are “people,” as our Supreme Court insists, then many of them are mentally ill.

this story deserves more visibility than it's getting... what it tells me and that i've been convinced of for quite some time is that psychopathy has become the accepted norm not only in our society but in many societies around the globe... moreover, psychopathy is being glorified as something to aspire to... maybe it's time we started seeing the reality of what we're doing to ourselves...

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An open letter from the peasants to the MOTU

author unknown...
You control our world. You’ve poisoned the air we breathe, contaminated the water we drink, and copyrighted the food we eat. We fight in your wars, die for your causes, and sacrifice our freedoms to protect you. You’ve liquidated our savings, destroyed our middle class, and used our tax dollars to bailout your unending greed. We are slaves to your corporations, zombies to your airwaves, servants to your decadence. You’ve stolen our elections, assassinated our leaders, and abolished our basic rights as human beings. You own our property, shipped away our jobs, and shredded our unions. You’ve profited off of disaster, destabilized our currencies, and raised our cost of living. You’ve monopolized our freedom, stripped away our education, and have almost extinguished our flame. We are hit… we are bleeding… but we ain’t got time to bleed. We will bring the giants to their knees and you will witness our revolution!


The Serfs

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Thursday, October 06, 2011

In 2-3 weeks, a global meltdown of sovereign debt - MAYBE, says IMF advisor

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Yes, I'm thrilled at even the faint smell of social justice

truth be told, i've been a champion of social justice since i can remember... i've bridled at the incredible IN-justices i've witnessed over my half-century plus of observing such things and have come close to despairing that there would ever be an accounting... maybe this is it and maybe it isn't... lord knows, we're still a long way from a real accounting but i'm going to grab some optimism where i see it... i just hope it's not of the obama variety...

robert scheer...

How can anyone possessed of the faintest sense of social justice not thrill to the Occupy Wall Street movement now spreading throughout the country? One need not be religiously doctrinaire to recognize this as a “come to Jesus moment” when the money-changers stand exposed and the victims of their avarice are at long last offered succor.


With 25 million Americans unsuccessfully looking for full-time work, 50 million experiencing mortgage foreclosure and an all-time high of 46.2 percent living in poverty, including 22 percent of all children, isn’t it logical that the faux populism of the tea party be confronted with a progressive alternative?

the tea party emitted a bad odor from the very start... i could never believe that people so impassioned about getting government out of our business could be so totally blind to those who are calling the shots behind the governmental curtain...

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It’s a world set on screwing just about everyone without compunction, shame, or even plausible deniability

andy kroll at tomdispatch...
The last time we saw a moment like this globally was 1968. (Other dates, like 1848 in Europe and 1919 in China, when the young took the lead in a previously dead world, also come to mind.) It’s the moment when the blood stirs and the young, unable to bear the state of their country or the world, hit the streets with the urge to take the fate of humankind in their own hands.

It’s always unexpected. No one predicted Tahrir Square. No one imagined tens of thousands of young Syrians, weaponless, facing the military might of the state. No one expected the protests in Wisconsin. No one, myself included, imagined that young Americans, so seemingly somnolent as things went from bad to worse, would launch such a spreading movement, and -- most important of all -- decide not to go home. (At the last demonstration I attended in New York City in the spring, the median age was probably 55.)

The Tea Party movement has, until now, gotten the headlines for its anger, in part because the well-funded right wing poured money into the Tea Party name, but it’s an aging movement. Whatever it does, in pure actuarial terms it's likely to represent an ending, not a beginning. Occupy Wall Street could, on the other hand, be the beginning of something, even if no one in it knows what the future has in store or perhaps what their movement is all about -- a strength of theirs, by the way, not their weakness.

It’s true, as many have pointed out, that they don’t have a list of well thought out demands, but the demand to have such a list is just their elders trying to bring them to heel. The fact is, they don’t have to know just what they’re doing, any more than a writer or filmmaker has to understand the book being written or the film shot. It’s not a necessity. It’s not the price of admission. If there’s one thing that’s obvious and heartening, as my friend, the novelist Beverly Gologorsky, said to me while we oldsters circumnavigated the park, “The overwhelming feeling I have is that no one here is planning to go home any time soon.”

Never have they been more needed. Theirs is certainly a movement, like the ones in the Middle East, inspired in part by economic disaster and aimed at an airless political as well as corporate/financial system controlled by the 1% left out of the signs in the park hailing the 99% of Americans whom Occupy Wall Street hopes to represent. It’s a world set on screwing just about everyone in that vast cohort of Americans without compunction, shame, or even, these days, plausible deniability.

i sincerely hope they aren't going home any time soon...

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Herman Cain offers the perfect summary of social darwinism

he's also the perfect spokesman for the assholes who want to run the world...
Herman Cain On Occupy Wall Street: ‘If You Don’t Have A Job And You’re Not Rich, Blame Yourself!’

people who think they've come by their wealth, power and position entirely through their own virtue and diligence and are therefore wholly deserving of everything that's come to them are so incredibly full of shit... i know a LOT of diligent, virtuous people and some of them are as poor as church mice... i also know poor folks who are assholes... by the same token, i know some very well-to-do people who are truly virtuous and some who are complete assholes... it's just like i often say about people i've met around the world... everywhere i go, there are truly wonderful people and there are assholes, and it's got nothing to do with race, creed, ethnicity, religion or nationality... there are terrific rich people and there are terrific folks who are unemployed... while i don't know him, i suspect herman cain falls into the asshole category... why else would he make such an incredibly dumb comment...?

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Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Chomsky comments on Occupy Wall Street and points out that while Bush only tortured, Obama murders

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Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Why Occupy Wall Street and its offspring should stay away from electoral politics

[T]he reason this is a street protest movement (rather than, say, a voter-registration crusade or an OFA project) is precisely because the protesters concluded that dedicating themselves to the President’s re-election and/or the Democratic Party is hardly a means for combating Wall Street’s influence, rising wealth inequality or corporatist control of the political process.


[T]he unique value and promise of these protests is that they are independent of prevailing political institutions, and it’s difficult to see how these protests can simultaneously be fully integrated into those institutions while preserving that value.


Dedicating oneself principally to the Democratic Party’s electoral prospects or Barack Obama’s re-election campaign would seem a glaring non sequitur to those concerns.

i am in total agreement... our electoral process is so seriously broken and so fundamentally compromised by the vast amounts of money thrown at it by our super-rich elites who are hell-bent on vacuuming up every last scrap of money and power on the planet, it's pure idiocy to waste time on it unless and until it's fixed...

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Stiglitz offers a teach-in at Occupy Wall Street

joseph stiglitz is one of my heroes... he's the one who should be leading the economic efforts of this country and not geithner...

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Monday, October 03, 2011

This is interesting - an MSNBC big name, Dylan Ratigan, comes out for Occupy Wall Street

i've followed dylan ratigan peripherally over the past couple of years and have always found his perspectives to generally coincide with my own... i wonder, however, if, like good ol' keith olbermann, this won't spell the end of his msnbc career...

in any case, i'm finding it extremely encouraging to see someone like this step up...

Three years ago, I left my 15-year career as a financial professional because I was disgusted and disturbed by the rampant evidence of corruption in the relationship between our banking system and our government.

High Surf Alert

At the time, the Tea Party was emerging and I was confident that between their exploding wave of anger and our newly minted President’s soaring aspirations for all of us - we would align to confront and resolve the blatantly corrupt relationship between banking and our government and more broadly BUSINESS and STATE.

I was sure that the obviously aligned interests of Obama’s constituents combined with the Tea Party’s libertarian principles about money and government, rigorous bank reforms in a simple, fair and transparent way would follow. And more importantly, I believed Obama’s energy and the Tea Party's would align to separate BUSINESS and STATE in order to bar banks, or any other special interest, from corrupting policy in a way that breaches fundamental fairness in our nation and prevents adaptation in a time of rapid change.

Their combined wave of energy was magnificent: Obama, scintillating and inspiring, harnessing a digital wave AND the Tea Party, raw and rebellious, screaming in unison: “We’re not going to take this any more!”

Little to none of this happened and I was wrong. And I feel I must do something about it.

As it turns out, I'm not alone. In just five days, 80,000 of us have signed a petition to get money out of politics. To make this happen, we will need to grow this movement, and that starts with your voice.

When we hit 100,000 signers, we are going to do a special show on getting money out of politics from Washington DC, deliver our 100k signatures to Congress, and issue what we call a “High Surf Alert." Attached to the high surf alert will be a link to a 3-paragraph letter from all of us explaining that we have signed this petition with the intent to send it to others.

This way we can harness the wave to grow our effort, lest we waste it on a bought and paralyzed government. When we are bigger we can then direct our attention at them.

I want to explain to my viewers why I feel so strongly about this and I want to hear your thoughts too!

You can tell me your story in one of two ways. One, click here and leave a comment on why you want to get money out or two, film yourself talking about, put it on YouTube and send it to I will use these video clips and stories on my show. I want people to see that it's not just me, that there are hundreds of thousands of us, millions of us, with one message: Get. Money. Out.

After 3 years of doing my best to marshal resources with dozens of impassioned collaborators to highlight obvious corruptions and solve problems together on TV, in person and on the Internet -- I found it doesn’t matter what I or anyone else thinks or does about a given policy idea -- because the entire media, and the two-party political apparatus that sets the debate is being funded by a relatively narrow group of major interests and any solution that threatens those funders is simply never discussed.

While our healthcare, educational, banking, military, energy, trade and tax policies all have great room for improvement, I believe that the events of the past few years make it clear that until we get money out of our political system, we cannot begin on any of it.

I recently learned that 94% of the time the candidate that raises the most money wins. Policy, race, gender, tie color, voice, age... all can be ignored in a candidate because – 94% of the time the candidate that raises the most money wins.

So this past weekend when I saw the Occupy Wall Street/Occupy America protests spontaneously erupting in 60 cities, as the New York protesters heading into their 3rd week - I decided to walk over Friday evening to Zuccoti Park to see what they were doing.

I live 5 blocks away and worked 2 blocks from the square they are in for years, this Friday was one of my first trips back to that street corner in years and I was both fearful and excited to see what was going on. I have also never been to a protest like this.

On the internet it said their message is this:

“Occupy Wall Street is leaderless resistance movement with people of many colors, genders and political persuasions. The one thing we all have in common is that We Are the 99% will no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of the 1%.”

They said they we non-violent, had a policy of no drugs or alcohol in the Park, and didn’t allow bullhorns or amplifiers of any kind – they communicate by repeating out loud a given speakers words in short sentences. The short sentence requirement for speakers (not easy for me!!) has the duel benefit of keeping speeches short -- and avoids that being “talked at” feeling that can result from electrical speech amplification.

When I arrived Friday there was a boisterous crowd in good spirits from all walks of life -- the hippies, young people and Tea Partiers I expected -- the old ladies and local lawyers I was encouraged to see as evidence for this group's broader appeal.

I was able to talk to different groups over a few hours and it was clear that we were in agreement. Our government is bought, and we need to do something about it. In fact, you don’t have to go to Zuccoti Park or any other protest to know that!

Unrelated to any of these protests, we have started this petition to get money out. We have done so because we all agree, that until we do so, we will be prevented from engaging in the debate we all desperately need on virtually every issue to end this corruption.

I wanted them to know that I agree with them and that I support their principle, to learn from them and share with them my own efforts.

I asked on Friday if I could return the next day, Saturday, to address their General Assembly in their unusual speak and repeat fashion in Zuccoti Park. They told me if I came back the next day and signed up at 6:30 I could secure 5 minutes, I did so and a few hours later was granted time to speak.

Here is what I told them:
“My name is Dylan. I live five blocks from here. I think you people are crazy. I love the way you communicate. The world has noticed your voice. You have been here for three weeks, and you should be very proud of what you have accomplished. For fifteen years I worked as a financial services professional. Have you guys said that yet? I can't believe I'm here talking to you. I'm here because I agree with you. I made the decision three years ago to leave the financial services industry. I did that because it was clear that the financial services industry was purchasing both political parties. I believe that the fundamental problem with our collective desire to demand the debate America deserves is that both of our political parties are funded by well-heeled individuals, because they are bought. So I have been asking myself what the hell I'm going to do about this. I have decided that I am going to devote all of my resources, whatever those resources may be, with the knowledge that the decision to devote resources is much more important than what your resources are. I believe that you and every other group of people who know for a fact that the government is bought and are making the decisions to make 2012 the year our voice will be heard. I ask myself -- what do I do with my voice? I look at myself like an angry villager. I am irate. I know that if I cannot harness my personal rage for positive change I will harm myself and not help anybody else. My question to myself has been how do I harness fire in myself? You can either burn yourself in the town square or you can deliver a single a message to your government. My message is that the government is bought. If we do not separate business and state, and harness this energy to make that the central mission of this years' election we cannot begin to do the work we have to do. Thank you for giving me some of your time and congratulations on your success.”
I agree with their principle, I don’t know what will become of their movement, but I know I want to help them because I agree with them. I also agree with Ron Paul, Lawrence Lessig’s #rootstrikers and millions of other disgusted and disenfranchised American’s who know that their government is bought and are mad as hell about it.

In fact I think the singular message of ending our corrupt government function and the money that changes hands to facilitate it is the one goal almost everyone shares. Not surprisingly our efforts at aligning in a world of divisive issues makes us an underdog. Last week Politico described our effort like this:

“MSNBC’s Dylan Ratigan is bent on banning money from political campaigns through a constitutional amendment, which is about as likely as the Cubs winning the World Series the night lightning twice strikes a massive earthbound asteroid.”

But I believe if we approach the disparate communities with humility and shared principle, and a narrow focus, from Occupy Wall Street to factions of the Tea Party and beyond -- to offer support, debate and learning, we have in 2012 our best chance yet to end the blatantly corrupt relationship between BUSINESS and STATE.

The battle for me now is how best to harness all the fire that I feel for actionable positive change.

Since I devoted myself to this issue of about how blatantly corrupt our government has become -- I feel I have tried three methods to resolve it:

1. Scream! -- It felt good to express myself, but I found it to be an intense energy that alienated people with no positive harness to direct it.
2. Fight! -- This also felt good, but rarely led to any resolution or positive action.
3. Help! -- Convert that rage into action everyday FOR something that is based on broad principles with a narrow goal. (You can start by adding your voice!)

I believe our decision to form this petition and use our voice to demand a real debate about an Amendment to get Money Out of politics in 2012 gives all of us something to be FOR -- and a tool that can do it. We may agree on nothing else, but can we all agree to do this.

Truth to Power,

Dylan Ratigan

whaddaya think...? is this thing growing legs...? after a lifetime of waiting, i'm afraid to get my hopes up... i let it happen with obama and look where that got me...

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Sunday, October 02, 2011

The Declaration of the General Assembly of Occupy Wall Street

Declaration of the Occupation of New York City

This document was accepted by the NYC General Assembly on september 29, 2011

As we gather together in solidarity to express a feeling of mass injustice, we must not lose sight of what brought us together. We write so that all people who feel wronged by the corporate forces of the world can know that we are your allies.

As one people, united, we acknowledge the reality: that the future of the human race requires the cooperation of its members; that our system must protect our rights, and upon corruption of that system, it is up to the individuals to protect their own rights, and those of their neighbors; that a democratic government derives its just power from the people, but corporations do not seek consent to extract wealth from the people and the Earth; and that no true democracy is attainable when the process is determined by economic power. We come to you at a time when corporations, which place profit over people, self-interest over justice, and oppression over equality, run our governments. We have peaceably assembled here, as is our right, to let these facts be known.

They have taken our houses through an illegal foreclosure process, despite not having the original mortgage.

They have taken bailouts from taxpayers with impunity, and continue to give Executives exorbitant bonuses.

They have perpetuated inequality and discrimination in the workplace based on age, the color of one’s skin, sex, gender identity and sexual orientation.

They have poisoned the food supply through negligence, and undermined the farming system through monopolization.

They have profited off of the torture, confinement, and cruel treatment of countless animals, and actively hide these practices.

They have continuously sought to strip employees of the right to negotiate for better pay and safer working conditions.

They have held students hostage with tens of thousands of dollars of debt on education, which is itself a human right.

They have consistently outsourced labor and used that outsourcing as leverage to cut workers’ healthcare and pay.

They have influenced the courts to achieve the same rights as people, with none of the culpability or responsibility.

They have spent millions of dollars on legal teams that look for ways to get them out of contracts in regards to health insurance.

They have sold our privacy as a commodity.

They have used the military and police force to prevent freedom of the press.

They have deliberately declined to recall faulty products endangering lives in pursuit of profit.

They determine economic policy, despite the catastrophic failures their policies have produced and continue to produce.

They have donated large sums of money to politicians, who are responsible for regulating them.

They continue to block alternate forms of energy to keep us dependent on oil.

They continue to block generic forms of medicine that could save people’s lives or provide relief in order to protect investments that have already turned a substantial profit.

They have purposely covered up oil spills, accidents, faulty bookkeeping, and inactive ingredients in pursuit of profit.

They purposefully keep people misinformed and fearful through their control of the media.

They have accepted private contracts to murder prisoners even when presented with serious doubts about their guilt.

They have perpetuated colonialism at home and abroad.

They have participated in the torture and murder of innocent civilians overseas.

They continue to create weapons of mass destruction in order to receive government contracts.*

To the people of the world,

We, the New York City General Assembly occupying Wall Street in Liberty Square, urge you to assert your power.

Exercise your right to peaceably assemble; occupy public space; create a process to address the problems we face, and generate solutions accessible to everyone.

To all communities that take action and form groups in the spirit of direct democracy, we offer support, documentation, and all of the resources at our disposal.

Join us and make your voices heard!

*These grievances are not all-inclusive.

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