The FBI considered the Occupy Movement a terrorist threat

From a PCJF news release:

FBI documents just obtained by the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund (PCJF) pursuant to the PCJF’s Freedom of Information Act demands reveal that from its inception, the FBI treated the Occupy movement as a potential criminal and terrorist threat even though the agency acknowledges in documents that organizers explicitly called for peaceful protest and did “not condone the use of violence” at occupy protests.

The PCJF has obtained heavily redacted documents showing that FBI offices and agents around the country were in high gear conducting surveillance against the movement even as early as August 2011, a month prior to the establishment of the OWS encampment in Zuccotti Park and other Occupy actions around the country.

In other words, according to Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, the Executive Director of the PCJF:

“These documents show that the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security are treating protests against the corporate and banking structure of America as potential criminal and terrorist activity. These documents also show these federal agencies functioning as a de facto intelligence arm of Wall Street and Corporate America.”

It is always good to have allies in high places….

Along with the thugs they authorize….

Freedom of assembly

While Fox News promotes the belief that some cities have treated the Occupy Wall Street activists better than they treated their Tea Party protesters, we have had numerous incidents like this (h/t Eclair) falsify such propaganda:

Steve Fraser discusses Occupy Wall Street, its historical precedents and its current significance

Writing for TomDispatch, Steve Fraser, a historian of labor and Wall Street as well as a publisher of important books, recently provided his readers with a capsule history of America’s resistance to American finance capital. His article is worth reading.

Fraser begins by asserting that:

Occupy Wall Street…may be a game-changer. If so, it couldn’t be more appropriate or more in the American grain that, when the game changed, Wall Street was directly in the sights of the protesters.

The fact is that the end of the world as we’ve known it has been taking place all around us for some time. Until recently, however, thickets of political verbiage about cutting this and taxing that, about the glories of “job creators” and the need to preserve “the American dream,” have obscured what was hiding in plain sight — that street of streets, known to generations of our ancestors as “the street of torments.”

After an absence of well over half a century, Wall Street is back, center stage, as the preferred American icon of revulsion, a status it held for a fair share of our history. And we can thank a small bunch of campers in Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park for hooking us up to a venerable tradition of resistance and rebellion.

Read more of this post

Liberal party hacks and apparatchiks turn towards the Occupy Together Movement

Naturally, the hacks and apparatchiks wish to suck the life out of the movement by delivering movement participants to the re-elect Obama Campaign. Kevin Gosztola, in another superb article on the movement, its effects and its significance, recently made the following observations:

The Occupy Wall Street movement has energy and momentum, which is exactly what President Barack Obama needs to get re-elected. It has people and media attention, which is why the organizers behind the “Take Back the American Dream” conference made a calculation to adjust messaging and include talk about Occupy Wall Street. They did this because the conference was to be about producing a movement that could counter the Tea Party and now, as Van Jones explained to attendees, a movement that could be a counter-balance to the Tea Party had sprouted. They acted as if the people in the streets were for their vision and agenda and talked about how those people showed it was time to build a “Rebuild the American Dream” movement to rival the Tea Party from the left. They even went to the steps of Capitol Hill for a two hour rally to “send a message” to Congress.

Now, leaders who are working on the Obama 2012 re-election campaign or progressive groups that will be canvassing door-to-door to convince people to not abandon Obama are looking to tap in to Occupy Wall Street’s energy. The country is about to see, as Salon’s Joan Walsh suggests, what happens when a movement without leaders meets leaders without a movement. The segment MSNBC host Ed Schultz did on October 5 indicates liberals, whom the Democratic Party counts on to deliver votes, will be working to contain this movement and make it seem these are really frustrated Obama supporters.

I would wager that every sound thinking member of the Occupy Movement would consider Barack Obama to be one of their key political enemies. And, Obama’s record in office easily justifies considering him thusly.

Gosztola eventually and rightly identifies:

…two immediate and glaring issues: (1) Will this movement allow itself to be damaged by liberal groups or Democrats who seek to divert it into campaigns for 2012 elections? Will it fight to hold on to its reputation as a group that is committed to a much grander vision for society than electing new people to positions in a representative democracy that no longer responds to the will of the people? And, (2) do Democratic Party operatives even want to use the energy of Occupy Wall Street to ensure Obama’s re-election.

He then concludes by offering what amounts to his answer to these questions:

What should the Occupy Wall Street organizers do? They should continue on the path they were on prior to all the labor and Democratic Party support. They should put the movement first and not bow to any Democratic Party or liberal organization operatives who seek to channel the movement into electoral politics or compel the movement to lower its sights. It should work to maintain a level of discipline and make sure it establishes what it is not. It should continue to aim for the impossible and remember that they have earned their power because they have occupied the park and stood their ground in the face of a media blackout, police brutality and contemptuous criticisms.

The occupiers did not come together to be the Tea Party of the left. They came together to take on corporate power and address problems that impact Americans who are conservative and liberal, left wing and right wing. And, to continue to grow as a movement that challenges the influence of corporations, special interests and the top 1% in government, they need to make clear this is not about building a better Democratic Party. This is about the war on poor, working class and middle class Americans, the constant attacks on unions and how Americans are begin to have influence over their government so the assaults on poor and working Americans come to an end.

Let there be no mistake about this point: The Occupy Movement now has the political initiative in this country. Today, it alone expresses the hopes and fears many Americans feel. This capacity provides the movement with its growing power, and it poses a real threat to the Duopoly Party System in the United States. The Occupy Movement is alive. Thus the Democratic Party hacks and appartchiks merely want to use the movement in order to affirm the criminal and regressive Obama regime. The movement has no future in the Democratic Party. What, then, is its future? To grow. To push back. To defend civil society. To defend the well-being of the “lesser people.”

Economists Stiglitz and Madrick Participate in the Wall Street Occupation

The video (h/t scarecrow at FDL,):

A transcript of the Teach In exists and when I find a working link for the document I’ll post the link and the transcript.

Quote of the day

While discussing the Occupy Wall Street protest, Glenn Greenwald makes the observation that:

The very idea that one can effectively battle Wall Street’s corruption and control by working for the Democratic Party is absurd on its face: Wall Street’s favorite candidate in 2008 was Barack Obama, whose administration — led by a Wall Street White House Chief of Staff and Wall-Street-subservient Treasury Secretary and filled to the brim with Goldman Sachs officials — is now working hard to protect bankers from meaningful accountability (and though he’s behind Wall Street’s own Mitt Romney in the Wall Street cash sweepstakes this year, Obama is still doing well); one of Wall Street’s most faithful servants is Chuck Schumer, the money man of the Democratic Party; and the second-ranking Senate Democrat acknowledged — when Democrats controlled the Congress — that the owners of Congress are bankers. There are individuals who impressively rail against the crony capitalism and corporatism that sustains Wall Street’s power, but they’re no match for the party apparatus that remains fully owned and controlled by it.

Greenwald, naturally, wanted to defend the protesters against the criticisms originating from the establishment media and, sadly, from the ‘progressive’ media. Channeling popular discontent into the Democratic Party and its common candidates is both self-defeating and demoralizing for those who hold dear radical goals and outcomes. If any President has made this problem clear that President would be Barack Obama. He got from the electorate a mandate for reform in 2008, but has since has squandered his political gift on reactionary economic policies and illegal war-making. To my mind, the path forward cannot waste itself on duopoly politicking. Common Americans must create the politics needed to address the problems they now confront, for, if not them, then who will make such a politics?

The NYPD vs. the Occupy Wall Street protesters

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