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Taxpayers Get the Bill for Occupations: $26.4M

#1 User is offline   Ian Ferrin Icon

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 05:08 PM

I completely agree w/ the occupy movement that corporate personhood and super PACs are awful ideas. Both move us away from democracy towards oligarchy.

What I REALLY don't like about the occupy movement is how they've trashed our cities and left taxpayers on the hook. It REALLY hurts their message IMO. And I'm not alone.

Taxpayers Get the Bill for Occupations: $26.4M (Updated 2/4)

This site lists the costs from 40 American occupied cities - and it's not a complete list.

I realize that occupiers are decrying injustices in the billions. While they themselves are only costing taxpayers a 'paltry 26 million'. But it really makes me not like the occupiers. The mess and the cost associated with the mess makes them seem like irresponsible children to me. I think what gets me is that they're preaching a message of financial reform, but they're charging the taxpayers for the sermon.

Peace,

Ian




PS - Here's a few additional links if anyone's interested:

“Replacing the lawn will cost us a lot of money,” (L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa) told reporters Wednesday. He said the cost of the raid and the park’s repair “may go beyond a million [dollars], certainly.” (1)

It cost $7,000 to clean up Dutton Hall (Occupy UC Davis) after it was Occupied, according to UC Davis. An additional $1,500 was spent on labor and supplies. (2)

Occupy Boston Cleanup Estimated to Cost $40,000 to $60,000 (3)

During the first two months of the nationwide Occupy protests, the movement that is demanding more out of the wealthiest Americans cost local taxpayers at least $13 million in police overtime and other municipal services (4)


1) http://abcnewsradioo...mayor-says.html

2) http://davis.patch.c...pair-cost-8-500

3) http://urbdezine.com...40000-to-60000/

4) http://www.usatoday....cost/51365474/1
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Posted 08 February 2012 - 07:37 PM

Just wondering what the 99%ers are getting out of this ows movement other than a tax bill to pay for the mess created by those representing the 99%.

#3 User is offline   jonie Icon

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 09:40 PM

I think the bills should be forwarded to the Wall St. oligarchs. Maybe that will bring the point home in a way that the protests haven't being able to do.

Not fair? Hey, there's plenty of unfairness to go around. Why should they be exempt from the joy considering the hand they've played in instigating all of this.

What you really don't like about the OWS movement, Ian, I can match you (pass you) in disgust and anger over what unfettered corporate and Wall St. greed (facilitated by Congress, the Supreme Court and the Executive Office) have done to our country. Not to mention the fallout in the rest of the Western world.

Is there nothing you'd protest over? And would you set personal limits concerning how long you would be willing to stay in a particular area to support the protest? Or are you just not the protesting type? If life became incredibly uncomfortable for you - perhaps put you in a very desperate situation and you felt your situation and the situation of others could be improved by lending your voice to address what you felt was the cause of the problem? Would you just stay on the park bench that was now your home and not get involved?

I suspect we can all be driven in desperation or outrage to do "something" about a wrongful state of affairs. It's those of us who are comfortable and not suffering who often fail to understand that the worst circumstances could befall us as well. Instead of looking under rocks for evidence of why protest should be driven out of cities and ultimately, the Constitution, try looking at how you can help to protect the right for the day you find there's something worth protesting over.
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#4 User is offline   December Rock Star Icon

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 09:50 PM

How come all songwriting forums have political sections where people fight over issues? In music, you're going to have a large proportion
of people veering towards the left so I dont know why they argue so much.


I've yet to see a song come out of it, but im watching all of you for inspiration. LOL

#5 User is offline   Ian Ferrin Icon

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 12:52 AM

View Postjonie, on 08 February 2012 - 06:40 PM, said:

It's those of us who are comfortable and not suffering who often fail to understand that the worst circumstances could befall us as well.

That's a pretty big leap you've made Jonie. I'm VERY aware that I'm only a few paychecks short of destitution. I think it's a travesty that our prisons are filled w/ non-violent drug offenders and that the architects of the recession are walking around basically Scott-free. I also think the occupiers aren't doing much for their cause when they behave badly and leave behind trashed parks and mounds of garbage.

Anyway, I think this has upset you. I basically think the occupiers need to wage a PR battle if the thing is going to continue. They're shooting themselves in the foot IMO. The comments at the foot of the $26.4M blog are mostly supportive of the blogger. Many comments in many blogs are often snarky and rude and the comments here are ~80% supportive. I know, that's only anecdotal, but still....

The longer this continues, the more focus there will be on the occupiers themselves. The occupy movement seeks to shine a light on the shady dealings of power. Those big dudes of business and government and finance have flashlights too. They probably have some really huge LED flashlights that are REALLY bright.

Anyway, if you think this thread is unproductive, you have my permission to have the moderator delete it.

Peace,

Ian
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#6 User is offline   Simple Simon Icon

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Posted 09 February 2012 - 02:32 AM

View PostIan Ferrin, on 09 February 2012 - 05:52 PM, said:

I basically think the occupiers need to wage a PR battle if the thing is going to continue. They're shooting themselves in the foot IMO.

In many ways I agree with you, Ian. As much as I can empathise with the sense of frustration and injustice that informed the original protests, there really is a sense of something having fizzled out, or even have become tainted through a lack of clear purpose and direction.

Part of the problem, I feel, is that the problem is as ill-defined as any possible solution might be. I mean, it's easy enough to identify "greed" as the enemy in all this, but the idea of a protest about greed is about as vague and illusive as the idea of a "war on drugs" or a "war on terror". Any such idea of a war on a concept, or emotion, or human failing, is intrinsically bound for failure, as its "enemy" has no true, definitive substance or definition.

They do need a clearer and definitive focus. I suspect that will only come about if, or when, a true leader of some kind emerges from the mess. I guess we'll see. ;)

Cheers

Simon






#7 User is offline   Ian Ferrin Icon

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Posted 29 March 2012 - 05:47 AM

View PostSimple Simon, on 09 February 2012 - 12:32 AM, said:

They do need a clearer and definitive focus. I suspect that will only come about if, or when, a true leader of some kind emerges from the mess. I guess we'll see. ;)

I thought I'd check and see how the Occupy Movement is doing. In my neck of the woods (~Sacramento, Ca, USA) it seems relatively non-existent.

I found this mostly pro-occupy blog interesting.

There's a prominent Occupy sub-group called the "99 percent declaration" that currently has 21 goals, that they intend to whittle down to 10 goals by a big "Continental Congress 2.0" on July 4th. However, none of these goals are endorsed by the main Occupy Wall St. group.

The goal, apparently, is to try to establish the Occupy Mvmnt as a political party. That's the 'goal'. But there still seems to be a fairly big lack of consensus about Occupy goals in general. It's interesting that a sub-group is trying to start a political party without the agreement of the main (at least original) occupy group.

I agree w/ the writer of the blog that July 4th this year might be interesting.

Peace,

Ian
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#8 User is offline   Jackie Chan's Wee Gran Icon

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Posted 29 March 2012 - 11:59 AM

yeah, the brief rebellion of protesting seems to be squashed and big business marches on. The super competitive economy marches on, the rich probably continue to make huge profits and the poor man struggles to pay his bills.


by the way, I always notice that quote from Margaret Thatcher at the bottom whenever you leave a comment. I reckon the problem with capitalism is that is that you eventually run out of money as the rich man is hoarding it all for himself and not sharing.


#9 User is offline   Ian Ferrin Icon

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Posted 29 March 2012 - 01:04 PM

View PostJackie Chan said:

yeah, the brief rebellion of protesting seems to be squashed and big business marches on. The super competitive economy marches on, the rich probably continue to make huge profits and the poor man struggles to pay his bills.

I'm not sure the occupy mvmnt is dead. And I'm not sure it was 'squashed'. I don't believe a 'movement' that is unable to define itself has much of a chance. I think the lack of consensus w/i the mvmnt itself might be partially responsible for it's current status.


Jackie Chan said:

by the way, I always notice that quote from Margaret Thatcher at the bottom whenever you leave a comment. I reckon the problem with capitalism is that is that you eventually run out of money as the rich man is hoarding it all for himself and not sharing.

I don't know why I leave that quote there. I'm basically a socialist. I certainly believe that we should have national health care which is probably priority #1 on the USA socialism agenda. But I believe in capitalism too. I really see the USA, currently, as an oligarchical republic. Although there's the pretense of democracy, big business and rich individuals who can afford to buy influence in BOTH parties are the ones who have the true votes. I support the statements of occupiers who have decried this. For some reason though, the occupy movement itself doesn't do much for me.

Peace,

Ian
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#10 User is offline   Jackie Chan's Wee Gran Icon

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Posted 29 March 2012 - 04:13 PM

Quote

Although there's the pretense of democracy, big business and rich individuals who can afford to buy influence in BOTH parties are the ones who have the true votes. I support the statements of occupiers who have decried this. For some reason though, the occupy movement itself doesn't do much for me.


I suppose I think of the Occupy movement as more of a prophetic voice than a movement that is likely to change things. Personally I'm a bit wary of big movements and protests and sort of liked the chaos and the way they didn't really have a mission statement or defined goals.
As for money buying influence,it's just the way of the world. It gets me down sometimes because of the injustice but I've been singing a song by Buddy Miller the last while and it seems as good advice as any. :)

This old world just stays the same
one man wants what the other man gained
one man's greedy one man's not
you can't worship money and God

Pray Pray
time to love every man woman and child
just forgive and let live for a little while


#11 User is offline   Ian Ferrin Icon

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Posted 30 March 2012 - 06:46 AM

View PostJackie Chan said:


This old world just stays the same
one man wants what the other man gained
one man's greedy one man's not
you can't worship money and God

Pray Pray
time to love every man woman and child
just forgive and let live for a little while

Nice! :)
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Posted 01 April 2012 - 02:45 AM

View PostIan Ferrin, on 31 March 2012 - 12:46 AM, said:

View PostJackie Chan said:


This old world just stays the same
one man wants what the other man gained
one man's greedy one man's not
you can't worship money and God

Pray Pray
time to love every man woman and child
just forgive and let live for a little while

Nice! :)

Yes. :)

Now switch to one of those televangelist channels that so many are slaves to and see how well this simple message resonates, or doesn't, with theirs.



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Posted 01 April 2012 - 07:19 AM

View PostJackie Chan said:

yeah, the brief rebellion of protesting seems to be squashed and big business marches on. The super competitive economy marches on, the rich probably continue to make huge profits and the poor man struggles to pay his bills.


by the way, I always notice that quote from Margaret Thatcher at the bottom whenever you leave a comment. I reckon the problem with capitalism is that is that you eventually run out of money as the rich man is hoarding it all for himself and not sharing.


If the occupy protests have "fizzled out" I think it represents a troubling time for our modern nations.

We are shocked at these stories where someone is left to die on a busy street and nobody helps out - it looks like we have institutionalized this apathy, where civil interests can be also be left out to die by the people in a position to do something
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#14 User is offline   Ian Ferrin Icon

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Posted 01 April 2012 - 01:15 PM

I'm really not sure the occupy protests have 'fizzled' out. It'll be interesting to see if that '99%' group can engender a consensus.

On the other hand I don't think it's enough for a movement to just be against stuff. You have to be for stuff too. You have to have an agenda. You have to have solid goals. If the occupy movement can't come together on what they want to accomplish, I think it's OK for it to fizzle out.

The entrenched and wealthy oligarchy will still be there in power. It may take a different kind of movement to move it.... to move US!

Peace,

Ian
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#15 User is offline   Alistair S Icon

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Posted 01 April 2012 - 02:18 PM

I don't think they have fizzled out. They have been fairly quiet over the winter, but I can still see the tents from my office window.

With the Olympics coming to London, it will be interesting to see what happens. Personally, I doubt that OWS protesters alone will be sufficient to sway much in the grand scheme of things. I think it will take something more. However, their presence does remind me of the issues (while solutions are still evasive) and their voice can still carry some political influence as long as even some of their messages garner more widespread support.
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Posted 01 April 2012 - 03:02 PM

I guess that when I really think about this stuff I realise that the only thing I can probably really make a change in is my own lifestyle and my own patch. It's that old line of Gandhi (?) of being the change you want the world to be.
Protesting seems a bit futile sometimes, far better to make positive changes and run with them to try and subvert the system.
So I'm trying to avoid using the big retailers and businesses (though they're hard to avoid). One way I that has been helping has been trying to learn more about cooking food for myself.
If I can get as much of our food from Fairtrade or organic, and from local farmers it means that I won't be supporting Tesco and Asda-WalMart or companies like Nestle with my money. If I've people around for food and cook nice stuff that might pass it on and less people in my community will want shop in WalMart plus the community will be built up.
Same with gardening. Then I know my food didn't come from Monsanto or someone like that.
If I actually had money I would have to think about where I keep it. Do I want to keep it in some dodgy bank if all they are going to gamble with it or use it for doing bad? What are they using my pension money for (if I was paying that)

I know this thread is about the Occupy movement and agree completely with their sentiment, but probably think that change will only come if we take responsibility for our own lives first.


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Posted 01 April 2012 - 10:14 PM

View PostJackie Chan said:

I've been singing a song by Buddy Miller the last while and it seems as good advice as any. :)

This old world just stays the same
one man wants what the other man gained
one man's greedy one man's not
you can't worship money and God

Pray Pray
time to love every man woman and child
just forgive and let live for a little while
[/font]


I was in the car tonight listening to a retro music station (oldies :)) When I heard this Hollie's song, "He Ain't Heavy" I was taken back in time to an era when so much seemed possible.

He Ain't Heavy



I still believe this way.
We have now sunk to a depth at which re-statement of the obvious is the first duty of intelligent men.
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The greatest tragedy in mankind's entire history may be the hijacking of morality by religion.
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Posted 02 April 2012 - 05:22 PM

View Postjonie, on 01 April 2012 - 08:14 PM, said:

When I heard this Hollie's song, "He Ain't Heavy" I was taken back in time to an era when so much seemed possible.


Trivia: A very young Elton John was the pianist on this song.

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Posted 03 April 2012 - 04:28 AM

Quote

I was in the car tonight listening to a retro music station (oldies ) When I heard this Hollie's song, "He Ain't Heavy" I was taken back in time to an era when so much seemed possible.


I used to love that song...and I've been thinking about my brother as he's getting married next week and I've been shopping for a suit *boooo*. The Occupy Belfast site is a few buildings up to my left. They've squatted an old Bank Building and have a few flags hanging from the window.
I've mixed feelings about them squatting an old bank building. My good Christian boy from old says 'They should be doing that, it's not their property, the y don't own it'
But most of me thinks 'Yeah, good on them.' Sometimes I even think I'd like to join them.. maybe if I wasn't married :)


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Posted 04 April 2012 - 08:44 AM

The occupy movement is still apparently alive in San Francisco.

Ms. Schubert seems to portray the Catholic Church as the villain for not donating their property to the occupiers. I personally don't see it.

One of the reasons I don't like the occupy movement is the nonconstructive vibe I sometimes get.

I found this quote from the article telling:

Police found disturbing graffiti inside the building, including anarchy symbols, the phrases, "Burn it down," "New Social Order," and "Kill Cops." Officers also found white supremacy literature inside one of the rooms...

Peace,

Ian
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#21 User is offline   Jackie Chan's Wee Gran Icon

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Posted 04 April 2012 - 10:49 AM

Quote

One of the reasons I don't like the occupy movement is the nonconstructive vibe I sometimes get.



the way I see it they aren't exactly constructive in the non occupy movement either. For example everytime Walmart opens in a new area to keep the shareholders happy the local community suffers. Or if McDonald's targets children with ads for Happy Meals or whatever there are consequences there. I think that sort of thing is much more dangerous than the Occupiers who might camp out in a public place or take over a public building.
In fact the big companies are probably happy as they can come across as 'normal' or the only option to make life better.


#22 User is offline   Ian Ferrin Icon

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Posted 04 April 2012 - 11:41 AM

Walmart has destroyed the downtowns of mainstreet America. No argument from me on that point. And now big box stores are all in danger from Amazon. In fact, all 'brick and mortar' stores may be threatened by new e-commerce. Is this bad? I dunno. I think the only constant is change.

I think those occupiers in San Francisco might not be thinking constructively. IE, in "occupying" that vacant Catholic building, they seem to have damaged the building, not made it better.

I don't see how the SF occupiers are any better than Walmart. They BOTH seem like predators to me!

Peace,

Ian

PS - As competitive as Walmart is, I admire what they've done done to reduce packaging and increase sustainability. What I see from occupiers is $26.4M cleanup costs!
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