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The police are making new arrests

Update5: The ruling looks like it is coming down.  Occupiers can return to park, can use sleeping bags but no tents.  Confirmed.  OWS has 45 minutes to appeal.  NYTimes confirms.  So, the answer to this is relatively simple:  occupy but don’t sleep there.  Have someone rent some local space to sleep and occupy the site in shifts.  Journalist at the courthouse says Occupiers can get into the park but are being prevented from doing it by police.

Update4: Still unconfirmed reports that the court has ruled in favor of the occupiers to return to Zuccotti Park with tents.  But there is some weird activity going on at Zuccotti park.  The police are moving people away from the entrance to the park and telling them to keep moving.  Still no idea what that’s all about.  Hmmmm, if I was the mayor and his 1% BFFs and I lost the park to some protestors, what would I do to make them go away….  I *might* make the park uninhabitable.  How would that happen?  OR, I might let them have the park but make it difficult to impossible to get into it.

Update4: CNN and Huffington Post report that Occupy Wall Street has won the right to reoccupy Zuccotti Park.  With tents.   Still unconfirmed.

Update3: We are waiting for Judge Stallman to rule whether the police can continue to block access to Zuccotti park in spite of an injunction.  Ruling to come in at around 3:15pm.  Rumor: the crackdowns and evictions around the country were coordinated with the Department of Homeland Security.  Mayor Jean Quan in Oakland has admitted that she was part of a conference call with the mayors of 18 other occupied cities.  It’s clear by now that the evictions were coordinated.  Who coordinated them is still a matter of speculation.

Update2:  Globalrevolution.tv has had more than 60,000 viewers today.  AND there are more and more and more people marching down to Zuccotti park in support of the occupiers who have been prevented from re-entering despite a court injunction preventing the police from keeping them out.

So, what did Bloomberg and his 1% cohort accomplish today?  He alienated the press, he has lost a court case upholding the 1st amendment rights of the occupiers to assemble and he has rallied the city around the occupiers.

Yep, didn’t see *that* coming.

Oh, and there’s a general strike at UC Berkeley.  (who couldda predicted?)

Unconfirmed report: Ocuupy Cleveland just mic checked VP Joe Biden.  So much for Obama campaign astroturf rumors.

Update:  See Not-Your-Sweetie’s personal account of the regrouping at the Trinity Church property at 6th and Canal.  It looks like she got out just in time.  Here’s a pic from her photo essay:

A rabbi, a buddhist and some priests walked into a crowd

Follow the action at www.GlobalRevolution.tv

Beatings of protestors now.

They are arresting a woman in a wheelchair.  Yep, they really are.  Four cops surrounding a woman in a wheelchair.  Priscilla?

It looks like there are even more people showing up to the fenced off area around 6th and Canal(?).  Soooooo, that worked out well for the police.

20 people arrested at the Trinity Church property.  4 were journalists from various media outlets.  One from the AP.  One man was roughed up, thrown to the ground with police physically on his back.

More first hand accounts of the eviction early this morning from journalists who were there to cover it:

The city blog Gothamist put it this way: “The NYPD Didn’t Want You To See Occupy Wall Street Get Evicted.”

As a result, much of the early video of the police operation was from thevantage point of the protesters. Videos that were live-streamed on the Web and uploaded to YouTube were picked up by television networks and broadcast on Tuesday morning.

At a news conference after the park was cleared Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg defended the police behavior, saying that the media was kept away “to prevent a situation from getting worse and to protect members of the press.”

Some members of the media said they wereshoved by the police. As the police approached the park they did not distinguish between protesters and members of the press, said Lindsey Christ, a reporter for NY1, a local cable news channel. “Those 20 minutes were some of the scariest of my life,” she said.

Ms. Christ said that police officers took a New York Post reporter standing near her and “threw him in a choke-hold.”

That reporter and two photographers with him declined to speak on the record because they are freelance workers and lack some of the job protections of full-time employees. But as they sipped coffee on Tuesday morning in Foley Square, where some of the protesters had regrouped, they expressed surprise at the extent of what they described as police suppression of the press.

And now there are a lot people angry about being displaced, irritated from lack of sleep, congregating in various places downtown.  Before, there was just one venue.  Now there are many.

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Bloomberg, bad optics and symbols

Let’s see what we have here with the raid of Zuccotti Park last night:

– The raid happens in the middle of the night by “jack booted thugs” disguised as New York’s finest with helicopters circling overhead.  It’s the right’s worst nightmare.

– They use LRAD devices that cause intense ear pain

– The media is banned from covering it; some reporters are roughed up and arrested

– The onsite free library of 5,000 books was destroyed as were the books

– Personal property was destroyed, loaded into dump trucks and can only be retrieved with proper identification, IFF you can identify your broken personal belongings

– The occupiers are still banned from the park despite a court order so, apparently, Bloomberg and his 1% feel they are above the law

– The Mayor is a member of the 1%.  No, I take that back.  He is a member of the .1%

– The Mayor is using the field tested words “clean”, “health” and “safety” but no cases of typhoid, cholera or other contagious diseases have been reported.

– There is a bigger difference between the words “clean” and “cleanse” than two letters.  Cleansing has been the excuse that all the bad governments on earth have used to remove troublemakers and inconvenient people from their midst.

– Mayors from Oakland, Portland and Denver have also “cleansed” their parks.  It looks like a coordinated effort.  Who are they taking orders from?  Homeland Security?  On what grounds?  Was it the 1%?  What government died and made them gods?  And why did Mayor Jean Quan’s legal council and deputy mayor quit yesterday saying they supported the Occupiers?

I would be very careful about how I used the cleaning words and metaphors because people aren’t stupid. Well, some right wing conservative gullible people who watch Fox News are have acquired stupidity syndrome (ASS) but the rest of America knows when something doesn’t feel right.

And it doesn’t feel right after this “Cleansing of the Occupiers”

This is not the beginning of the end, it is the end of the beginning.

Update from Occupy Wall Street:  The mass action that was planned for Thursday, November 17 is still on.  I’m still waiting to hear whether union leaders and religious clergy who are meeting with the Occupiers are going call for action today or whether they will be able to hold it off until Thursday.

Marsha reports that Occupy the London Stock Exchange is rallying in solidarity of Occupy Wall Street, Portland, Oakland and Denver:

We will gather with Americans at the US Embassy as they demand entry to question their Ambassador why the US will condemn repression of peaceful protest in Egypt and Syria while the NYPD, Oakland PD, Denver, PD, and others beat and gas peaceful protesters in the US to suppress dissent.

And this comment from the NYTimes frontpage article on the raid goes right to the heart of what’s wrong with this picture:

“If only they enforced bank regulations like they do park rules, we wouldn’t be in this mess.”

Yes, when was the last time we raided Goldman-Sachs or JP Morgan Chase, dragged them out of their offices, beat and peppersprayed them for being menaces to society? Bloomberg really stuck his foot in it. The comments are overwhelmingly against him. Now, all eyes are fixed on the people he’s protecting from a bunch of committed protestors running an open air salon. The message doesn’t get any clearer.

Zuccotti Park cleared of Occupiers

Update: People around the world are sending the displaced occupiers food. If you are in the Foley Square area, you can get breakfast there. To order breakfast for the occupiers, you can call Pete at Cortez Cafe at (212)7663200. There is a minimum $5 donation. A local church as opened its doors for sanctuary. There is an impromptu process going on right now. There will be a GA at 7am. It sounds like occupiers are going to Foley Square. They are having a brief moment of silence to appreciate the morning and sticking together through the night. Wahoo-Dorus!

You can follow the action at www.globalrevolution.tv

If you want to register your protest, you can call the NYPD and tell them to stop. Here’s the number: (212)334-0611

Um, I *might* have to head up to Foley Square today to do on the spot reporting. Does anyone want to put up bail for me in the unlikely event that I am arrested? I have papers to read. I can do that as easily in Foley Square as anywhere else.

By the way, to get to Foley Square, see this handy google map.

Update2: There will be a group meeting at 6th Ave and Canal Street at 9:00am.

There are Occupy the Highway marchers headed for DC. Their goal is to arrive in DC on Nov. 23, the day the supercommittee is supposed to present their deficit reduction cuts to Congress. They were in Philadelphia yesterday. If you’re interested, you can catch up with them between Philly and Wilmington, Delaware today. See this page for further details. Occupy the Highway also has a wordpress site here. Dear Paul Krugman, there’s a student named Whitney Blodgett who is giving Princeton a bad name. Could you please administer a strong dope-slap to the back of the head? It’s embarrassing.

Update3: Mike Bloomberg’s statement says something to the effect that protestors were preventing the general public from enjoying the use of the park.  {{rolling eyes}}  Is that the best he can come up with?  Because I never saw anyone prevented from entering or using the park when I was there.  Of course, there were those creepy looking dudes that Karl Rove and Fox News probably hired to scare the tourists away but other than that, no one was prevented from enjoying the park.  In fact, the NYPD was sending the homeless, mentally ill and aggressive indigent down to Zuccotti Park even though some of them were disruptive and potentially dangerous to the people in the park.  Earth to Mike Bloomberg, no one is going to believe that crap.

Update4: Bloomberg is having a press conference at City Hall but the occupiers are not allowed to get into the City Hall.  So the occupiers are going to try to prevent any of the media or press from getting into the building to attend the conference.   Soooo, let’s get this straight, the people who are the subject of the press conference are prevented from attending the public press conference to hear the reason why their protest was silenced.  Ok, occupiers have been alerted by a member of the press that there is an alternative entrance.  They are linking arms to prevent the press from getting in the building.

Occupiers barring the entrance to City Hall

Meanwhile, the younguns have gotten the distinct impression that they were used by Obama in 2008 and aren’t in the mood to help him next year.

Occupiers are now marching to meet with union and religious leaders.

Update5:  Someone just announced that a judge ruled that Bloomberg can’t evict protestors from Zuccotti Park.  Looking for confirmation…

Here is the ruling from Judge Lucy Giddings.  A temporary restraining order was issued at 6:30am.  The injunction is in effect until 11:30am.  Another hearing is scheduled today in an attempt to make the injunction permanent.

Amy Goodman at Democracy Now was on the scene when the eviction happened.  Her report is on http://www.globalrevolution.tv now.

Ok, I can hear Bloomberg in the background.  He calls the arrests, beatings, pepperspraying and the destruction of personal property as “cleaning”.  I’m going to take a guess that the word “clean” was focus group tested. Bloomberg knows what gets to the conservative viewer.  There’s nothing they like more than cleanness and orderliness. Occupiers’ personal belongings were loaded into dump trucks and carted away.  It sounds like the Mayor is going to ignore the judge’s injunction and that Zucotti Park will remain closed until the situation is clarified.

Occupiers can pick up their personal belongings at the sanitation department parking lot tomorrow.  They must provide proper identification. But as Amy Goodman panned across the area where sanitation workers were loading the destroyed remnants of Zuccotti park protestors stuff, it’s hard to believe that anyone is going to find something worth recovering much less identifying as their own.

*************************

Maybe we should have known something was up yesterday when the legal council for Mayor Jean Quan in Oakland quit in disgust and threw his support behind Occupy Oakland. The deputy mayor soon followed.

Or maybe it was the fact that Oakland, Portland and Denver were evicted all at once.

Or maybe it was Mayer Nutter in Philadelphia, newly reelected, who was making noises about OccupyPhilly overstaying its welcome.

Whatever it was, we should have seen it coming.

Details are sketchy because the police aren’t letting journalists near the scene but it looks like the bastards moved in at 2:00am to clear Zuccotti Park. The livestream at GlobalRevolution says that “The police are destroying Zuccotti Park, many arrests, many injured, the police are pushing the press away from the scene. Police are tearing apart library. Broadway and Liberty- arrest teams headed there (Police Scanner)”

You can watch the sanitation workers cleaning the park at globalrevolution.tv.  (They’ve moved on to other things by now)

And here’s a picture that says it all.  NYPD’s finest.

Basically, the police moved in to the park in the dead of night when they thought no one would be looking and destroyed everything, used batons and pepperspray against occupiers and did the bidding of the 1%.

It’s not going to work. They will be back. The genie is out of the bottle. The 1% will never be able to rest easily again because the 99% are all around them. There will be more infiltrations. In fact, the infiltrators are already in place. You can fire the ones you have but a new set of infiltrators will take their place. How are you going to know the difference?

The occupiers in Zuccotti Park were only the ones you could see.

You better be nice because the Zuccotti Park occupiers were models of non-violent resistance. They have no control over what desperate people will do when they’re pushed too far.