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Wall Street Protests Touched National Nerve

Wall Street Protests Touched National Nerve

 

By Michael Levitin, New America Media

Last Saturday, prior to the thousands-strong march of Wall Street protestors attempting to cross the Brooklyn Bridge, which ended in some 700 arrests, the first edition of The Occupied Wall Street Journal hit New York City’s streets. Within three days, all 50,000 copies had been snapped up and distributed by volunteers throughout the five boroughs, leading to another print run Tuesday ahead of the paper’s second edition, which comes out Friday.

The Journal, a 4-page weekly broadsheet funded entirely through online contributions at Kickstarter.com, is the latest manifestation of a social media-driven movement that is growing in real body numbers and gaining national momentum at alarming speed.

Since the occupation began in Liberty Square in lower Manhattan on Sept. 17, dozens of cities across the U.S. have gotten into the act, setting up occupied encampments in places as diverse as Denver, Omaha, Kansas City, Boston and Birmingham; Philadelphia, Austin, San Diego, Tampa and Salt Lake City. (The website occupytogether.org is great resource to follow the movement’s developments and learn how to get involved in your towns and cities.)

Initially portrayed in the media as a rag-tag band of young underemployed activists protesting without any specific demands, Occupy Wall Street has touched a national nerve because it embodies something far more potent, and obvious: a voice for the 99 percent of Americans whose interests are not being served by the corporate elites that govern Wall Street and Washington.

On Monday, a march around Wall Street by occupiers dressed as corporate zombies, devouring dollar bills, garnered national media attention. But visual actions like this one and the other daily marches happening throughout lower Manhattan, only scratch the surface of the true organizing power that underlies this movement.

Already, workers’ unions across New York City have publicly backed the occupation, from teachers to phone workers, transit workers, building maintenance and hospital workers. On Wednesday, Oct. 5, a march by the unions will take place in coordination with a citywide student walkout, lending further support to the set of principles articulated in the Declaration of the Occupation – a document that was approved, released and distributed nationally by the New York City General Assembly, the movement’s horizontally run, consensus-based governing body, last week.

Marches are underway to Washington, DC, where a significant occupation has taken root, and in under two weeks the world shall witness a global day of occupations that will spring from as-yet quiet corners of Europe and beyond.

Born from the movement of the 99 percent, The Occupied Wall Street Journal seeks to provide a platform for those participating in the occupation of Wall Street and other occupations across the country, in order to share their stories, express their views and propose ideas toward a systemic transformation of the corporate-controlled state.

If you see a copy of the paper on your street, pick it up. Tune in. Join us.

Michael Levitin is the managing editor of The Occupied Wall Street Journal.  This post first appeared at New America Media.

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63 comments

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9:41AM PDT on Oct 11, 2011

What the US needs now is a jolly good Socialist Revolution to weed out the reactionary jerks from the gene pool so that decent thinking American Citizens can get on with repairing the damage caused by REPUBLICAUNTS and the anti Socialist mania they extol.
I have always been amazed by the apparent mania exhibited by Yanks about their hatred of Communism. Well that's Socialist and Christ was a Socialist was he not, although I'm not a believer?
It's time for the mass of decent, sane Americans to root out the imbecilic Teatards and repress the moronic Republicaunts so that the US can regain its correct position in World affairs.

8:22PM PDT on Oct 7, 2011

Good, the real economic pain we are in seems to be finally sinking in even with staunch Republicans. Check out Frank Wolf's (R-VA) speech yesterday on the House floor:

http://wolf.house.gov/index.cfm?sectionid=34&itemid=1805

Not exactly admitting we have to tax the rich, but soundly thrashing Norquist and the no-compromise fanatics.

11:26PM PDT on Oct 5, 2011

Excellent!

11:11PM PDT on Oct 5, 2011

I have never felt so proud to be an American! This is the real grassroots, the real voice of the diverse, yet united people, together we will pull this country out of the financial tailspin. It's not up to Obama, or our highly paid representatives, it rests on our shoulders alone and we will and can do it!

10:34PM PDT on Oct 5, 2011

Go to moveon.org and join virtual Occupy Wallstreet.

10:27PM PDT on Oct 5, 2011

Now there's a newspaper? Shoot, if they keep working at it, they just may start a whole new country! And that would be a good thing!

10:12PM PDT on Oct 5, 2011

We the people are with you!!!

10:06PM PDT on Oct 5, 2011

Yay!

9:16PM PDT on Oct 5, 2011

Bravo to all those brave souls. Right on, time for the rest of us to join them, if not in person, at least in spirit!

7:10PM PDT on Oct 5, 2011

Marilyn....you are so right about the Credit Unions. I have been a member of ours since 1970 and have never belonged to a bank. I have their debit card and never have a fee on it

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