Saturday, October 15, 2011

OWS Wants Economic Equality and Real Democracy -- Oh, and Free Tibet

Occupy Wall Street went global early this morning and organizers hope for non-violent demonstrations in 950 cities in 85 countries, not the "more than a thousand countries" claimed by Diane Sawyer of ABC Small World Tonight News. How many cities, countries, and people will actually participate over the weekend is anyone's guess, however.

MSNBC is reporting early Saturday morn -
In Sydney, about 2,000 people, including representatives of Aboriginal groups, communists and trade unionists, protested outside the central Reserve Bank of Australia.

"I think people want real democracy," said Nick Carson, a spokesman for OccupyMelbourne.Org. "They don't want corporate influence over their politicians. They want their politicians to be accountable."

The crowd cheered a speaker who shouted, "We're sick of corporate greed! Big banks, big corporate power standing over us and taking away our rights!"

In Tokyo, where the ongoing nuclear crisis dominates public concerns, about 200 people joined the global protests Saturday.

Under the light drizzle, the participants marched outside the Tokyo Electric Power Co., which operates the tsunami-hit Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, chanting anti-nuclear slogans, while opposing the U.S.-led Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade bloc that Japan is considering joining.

"No to nuclear power," the marchers chanted as they held up banners.

In Taiwan, over 100 people gathered at the Taipei 101 skyscraper, home to the stock exchange, chanting "we are Taiwan's 99 percent", saying economic growth had only benefited companies while middle-class salaries barely covered soaring housing, education and healthcare costs.

They found support from a top businessmen, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp Chairman Morris Chang, who told reporters in the northern city of Hsinchu that Taiwan's income gap was a serious issue.

"I've been against the gap between rich and poor," Chang said. "The wealth of the top 1 percent has increased very fast in the past 20, 30 years. 'Occupy Wall Street' is a reaction to that. We have to take the issue seriously..."

In Manila, about 100 members of various groups under the Philippine left-wing alliance, Bayan, marched on the U.S. Embassy Saturday morning to express support for the Occupy Wall Street protests in the United States and to denounce "U.S. imperialism" and U.S.-led wars and aggression.

They carried a large banner that said, "Resist imperialist plunder, state repression and wars of aggression," and another expressing "Solidarity action for Occupy Wall Street."

They also chanted "U.S. troops, out now!" in reference to the presence of hundreds of U.S. soldiers, mostly in the southern Philippines, involved in anti-terrorism training of Filipino troops. One man carried a placard saying "Genuine people's democracy lives in the streets."

In South Korea, activists began gathering on the streets of Seoul.

The Korea Herald newspaper reported that a coalition of 30 local civic groups planned to hold a two-day protest in the main financial district of Yeouido and other parts of the capital.

"The situation is the same in South Korea (as the U.S.), where the financial institutions have speculated to earn high profits in a short time, creating victims," the coalition said in a statement, the Herald reported.

The protesters want compensation for people who lost money in the banking crisis.

Seoul police warned that damaging public facilities, occupying roads and assaulting police officers would not be tolerated, the Herald said.

Protesters in London vowed to occupy the London Stock Exchange Saturday. Nights of rioting rocked the British capital in August after the fatal police shooting of a 29-year-old man.

"We have people from all walks of life joining us every day," said Spyro, one of those behind a Facebook page in London which has grown to some 12,000 followers in a few weeks.

Spyro, a 28-year-old who has a well-paid job and did not want to give his full name, summed up the main target of the global protests as "the financial system."

Rome is girding for major protests by demonstrators known as the "indignati."

Italian TV reports from Milan on Friday showed about 20 young people trying unsuccessfully to enter a building where Goldman Sachs has an office, and spraying red paint on the entrance.

In Germany, where sympathy for southern Europe's debt troubles is patchy, the financial center of Frankfurt and the European Central Bank in particular are expected to be a focus of marches called by the Real Democracy Now movement.

In Canada, protests were planned for Saturday in cities including Montreal and Vancouver. In Toronto, demonstrators plan to gather at Canada's main stock exchange.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper said he doubted Canadians would be as angry as their neighbors to the south as Canadian banks have not received a U.S.-type bailout.
From CNN -
United for Global Change -- the central site for the international movement -- said 951 cities in 82 countries will take part in the rallies.

In Japan, about 200 people marched through Tokyo carrying various signs, including "No More Nukes and "Free Tibet." The crowd included children jumping and skipping behind the adults.

Australian cities of Melbourne and Sydney joined rallies against "corporate greed" as protesters aligned themselves with the global movement.

"Our protests are to show our solidarity with Occupy Wall Street and also protest various problems -- from indigenous issues in this country to government problems," said Alex Gard, one of the Melbourne organizers. "We know we have it better than the protesters in the States ... but there are still problems in this country."

Organizers urged protesters to bring sleeping bags and other soft items to sleep on.

In South Korea, Arthur Fragoso rallied with a small group outside a bank in Seoul. He said his protest is a solidarity move with the Occupy movement and not a reflection of any discontent against his government.

"We are protesting mostly for economic issues worldwide," he said.

[I]n the Indonesian capital of Jakarta, about two dozen people -- some wearing masks -- gathered near the U.S. Embassy.

"We wanted to show that the American regime, its system of imperialism needs to be destroyed," said Rudi Daman, leader of the International League of Peoples' Struggle.

Protests were planned in other countries, including major cities in Kenya, South Africa, Britain, France, Russia, Mexico and Venezuela.
The impetus for protest was wearing out according to some analysts, especially in the protest's countries of origin - Greece and Spain. The austerity measures have caused despair, slashed wages and pensions, and created hundreds of thousands of unemployed, the momentum for sustained action dwindled. University of Piraeus Professor Mary Bossis told Michel Rose of Reuters, "More people agree with these protests than actually take part. ...There is anger, there is rage ... but what it takes to overturn the current situation is missing."

We can jeer and mock and analyze 'til the cows come home, but we cannot deny that people all over the world are dissatisfied with their lot and are wanting something different; what that "different" should be is still very nebulous. The one idea the disparate groups do agree upon is, "Enough is enough." The demonstrations are far flung and scant in participation, yet there is an undercurrent that may, and probably will, carry society's flotsam for a considerable time, perhaps rendering some fragile countries to tatters.

The ultimate danger inherent in any movement the wishes for revolutionary type change is that they may just end up getting what was wished for and regret it without the do-over option.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Pallywood Comes to Occupy Wall Street NYC

Images of National Lawyers Guild legal observer, Ari Douglas, being run over by a New York City policeman on a scooter were splashed across the Internet late Friday morning. The Gothamist reported, "We're still trying to determine how badly he was injured, but one witness speculated that he broke his leg." For the rest of the day, the leg was broken based on this one speculation. Hours later, Gothamist updates the post to include, "some doubt has been cast on earlier reports that he was seriously injured."

Photo: A protester is pinned down by an NYPD scooter during an Occupy Wall Street march Friday. Joe Marino for News

Here's the video OWS claims to show Douglas' leg being run over:


Pretty damning stuff of police brutality, if this is all there is. Zainab Akbar, another legal observer for the lawyers guild verifies the video images, "He was observing the protest and he was run over by a police motorcycle. His leg was stuck under the bike, and he kicked his leg to get the bike off his leg, and then the police attacked him and shoved him into the ground and put a night stick against the back of his neck." Douglas was arrested and taken to Bellvue Hospital for treatment of his injuries that Paul Browne, NYPD spokesman explained were scratches to the observers face suffered when he resisted arrest and "he faked everything else."

There's another video view that shows a different story that has many other people saying an Oscar is coming Douglas' way for his great soccer style Pallywood pratfall.

OWS_PoliceScooter from The Local East Village on Vimeo.

Joe Marino, Daily News photographer, witnessed the event and his statement backs the police. "The bike definitely hit him," Marino said adding that the scooter cop did not roll over Douglas' leg. Marino continued, "I saw him sticking his legs under the bike to make it appear he was run over."

Two stories each backed by video evidence, but which is true? Or, are both videos portraying the truth? From the Vimeo video we can see these images:

The first screen capture at 23 secs shows both of Ari Douglas' feet next to the scooter's front wheel.

The second capture also at 23 secs shows Douglas' feet next to the front wheel and parallel to the scooter and policeman with neither foot under the bike.

The third at 25 secs shows the front scooter wheel has moved passed Douglas' feet.

In photo four, 26 secs, we can see Douglas on his right side completely clear of the scooter with the officers leg extended, left foot off the foot rest.
Also at 26 secs, the fifth shot shows Douglas drawing his right foot up toward the officers leg which is planted on the pavement. At this point, Douglas is completely free of the scooter's rear tire. The red arrow points to area that Douoglas' right leg finally ends up behind the officer's leg. See Marino's photo at the top of this post that shows the individuals' legs cross positions relative to one another.

The last shot, from the You Tube video at 17 secs, shows Douglas' right leg apparently with the scooter's rear wheel on his right leg. How did it get there?

As the previous images show, Douglas was parallel to the bike and completely free of any bike entanglement. In the end he is 90 degrees to the bike with the rear wheel apparently on top of his right leg. My own interpretation accords with the statement of Daily News photographer, Joe Marino, when he says that Douglas deliberately stuck his leg under the scooter so that it would appear he was run over in an act of police brutality. However, the crucial moment and the images that could dispel all doubt is obscured by the all the media image hounds blocking the view.

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

One Way

Simple image juxtaposition can create powerful editorials.

Drudge Report Oct 13, 2011 9:00pm

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Fast and Furious Arsenal Found

Been wondering what Fast and Furious Operation Gunrunner guns look like? The weapons in the photo were found last April in the home of a Sinaloa cartel enforcer in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.
Reporting from Washington— High-powered assault weapons illegally purchased under the ATF's Fast and Furious program in Phoenix ended up in a home belonging to the purported top Sinaloa cartel enforcer in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, whose organization was terrorizing that city with the worst violence in the Mexican drug wars.

In all, 100 assault weapons acquired under Fast and Furious were transported 350 miles from Phoenix to El Paso, making that West Texas city a central hub for gun traffickers. Forty of the weapons made it across the border and into the arsenal of Jose Antonio Torres Marrufo, a feared cartel leader in Ciudad Juarez, according to federal court records and trace documents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Notice the enlarged fake dollar bill above the bookcase in the center; the portrait is that of Obama in college smoking weed.

Read more: LA Times

The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.