Occupy Wall Street. Police vs people in NY.

NormanTheIntern wrote:

It's also possible they're lumping in other parts of the jobs bill with the buffett plan?

Not unless they had a time machine. The WSJ op-ed came out a month before Obama announced his jobs plan. Even then Obama's position on taxes has been pretty danged consistent ever since he was campaigning for President: let the Bush-era tax cuts expire and raise taxes on those making more than $250,000 a year.

NormanTheIntern wrote:

I don't see how it's salient to this thread anymore, but on my part it was simply a good faith mistake based in part on that editorial, not deliberate obfuscation or fabrication.

No worries. No one thought you were making stuff up. Whoever wrote that WSJ op-ed on the other hand...

OG_slinger wrote:

No worries. No one thought you were making stuff up. Whoever wrote that WSJ op-ed on the other hand...

Indeed, NormantheIntern. You are making my understanding of the issue sharper and I appreciate it. My last post wasn't so much piling on but redundant due to being behind in the thread. Your comments are accurate and well-sourced and you are gracious in the discussion.

Oso wrote:
OG_slinger wrote:

No worries. No one thought you were making stuff up. Whoever wrote that WSJ op-ed on the other hand...

Indeed, NormantheIntern. You are making my understanding of the issue sharper and I appreciate it. My last post wasn't so much piling on but redundant due to being behind in the thread. Your comments are accurate and well-sourced and you are gracious in the discussion.

It's just the Dwight avatar. It inflames.

NormanTheIntern wrote:
OG_slinger wrote:

This op-ed was written three days after Buffett's piece came out in the New York Times. Obama mentioned it in several town hall meetings in Iowa and Illinois during those three days. None of those mentioned taxing people in the $200,000 or so income range.

It's also possible they're lumping in other parts of the jobs bill with the buffett plan?

After re-reading the article, I don't think it was referring to the Buffett plan, just comments made by Buffett and Obama. The plan was never mentioned by name. Obama has on numerous (and recent) occasions mentioned taxing those making more then $200,000.

I don't think Norman or the WSJ were trying to mislead anyone.

OG_slinger wrote:

No worries. No one thought you were making stuff up. Whoever wrote that WSJ op-ed on the other hand...

What did they make up in the article?

MattDaddy wrote:
OG_slinger wrote:

No worries. No one thought you were making stuff up. Whoever wrote that WSJ op-ed on the other hand...

What did they make up in the article?

This onerous tax on capital is a U.S. competitive disadvantage in the global economy, which is why Congress agreed in 2003 to cut the rates on dividends and capital gains. Even as the rest of the world is cutting tax rates on corporate income, Mr. Buffett wants to raise U.S. rates in a way that would make America less attractive for investment. Under a sensible tax reform, the feds would impose either a corporate tax or a dividend and capital gains tax, but not both.

He not talking about raising corporate rates but income rates. This is obfuscating in the finest.

MattDaddy wrote:

After re-reading the article, I don't think it was referring to the Buffett plan, just comments made by Buffett and Obama. The plan was never mentioned by name. Obama has on numerous (and recent) occasions mentioned taxing those making more then $200,000.

It was responding to Buffett's NYT's editorial where he called for creating new tax brackets for those making more than $1 million and $10 million and making those rates higher than the current 35% people making more than $380,000 (the existing top bracket) have to pay.

Obama has been remarkably consistent in calling for tax increases on individuals making more than $200,000 and households making more than $250,000. It's a pretty reasonable stance to say that someone making more than five times the median income can afford to pay a bit more in taxes.

MattDaddy wrote:

What did they make up in the article?

That Buffett's proposal (and Obama's stance on taxes) somehow meant that taxes were going to be raised on the middle class.

Like Mr. Obama, Mr. Buffett speaks about raising taxes only on the rich. But somehow he ignores that the President's tax increase starts at $200,000 for individuals and $250,000 for couples. Mr. Obama ought to call them "thousandaires," but that probably doesn't poll as well.

So, according to the WSJ the middle class consists of people making $250,000. I wonder what they call the 66% of Americans taxpayers who make less than $50,000?

The op-ed also stretches to the truth to the point of breaking by trying to claim that the capital gains and corporate tax rates means that the wealthy are actually taxed at 45+%, not 15%. That, of course, conveniently overlooks the fact that no corporation comes anywhere close to paying the 35% corporate income tax rate.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/1...

These great people are sure a class act. This stuff has got to stop.

Ulairi wrote:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/1...

These great people are sure a class act. This stuff has got to stop.

So where can they protest? Or are you saying they shouldn't? This is a fairly typical tactic on the part of corporate media. To divide the 99% against each other. First they tried "they're weird hipsters with cell phones and trust funds". Then they tried physical threats. Now they're trying to pit them against everyone else by saying they're disrupting business and putting the little guy out of business. Any protest would do this. Any mass movement would do this.

Zombies! I told you guys

DSGamer wrote:
Ulairi wrote:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/1...

These great people are sure a class act. This stuff has got to stop.

So where can they protest? Or are you saying they shouldn't? This is a fairly typical tactic on the part of corporate media. To divide the 99% against each other. First they tried "they're weird hipsters with cell phones and trust funds". Then they tried physical threats. Now they're trying to pit them against everyone else by saying they're disrupting business and putting the little guy out of business. Any protest would do this. Any mass movement would do this.

I think that you have a solid point, but the other side of the coin is that if they want to be taken seriously - they should act serious.

Zombies, while awesome, are not serious.

Ulairi wrote:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/1...

These great people are sure a class act. This stuff has got to stop.

They're worse than Canadians when they lose the Stanley Cup!

Oh wait, they're actually not.

Seems pretty tame for the amount of people and the length of time this has been going on.

SallyNasty wrote:
DSGamer wrote:
Ulairi wrote:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/1...

These great people are sure a class act. This stuff has got to stop.

So where can they protest? Or are you saying they shouldn't? This is a fairly typical tactic on the part of corporate media. To divide the 99% against each other. First they tried "they're weird hipsters with cell phones and trust funds". Then they tried physical threats. Now they're trying to pit them against everyone else by saying they're disrupting business and putting the little guy out of business. Any protest would do this. Any mass movement would do this.

I think that you have a solid point, but the other side of the coin is that if they want to be taken seriously - they should act serious.

Zombies, while awesome, are not serious.

I don't disagree. Part of why I couldn't protest with them is because I'm not *of* them. It's definitely a different generation. I think the thing to keep in mind, though, is that there hasn't been an active, persistent anti-establishment movement in the US for decades. We've had a nice long run of cheap credit and a fairly high standard of living in superficial ways. So people have been busy with toys and not really taking these issues seriously. And the people that should be protesting (people who are poor, out of work, underemployed) not only can't protest, but aren't of the same generation. In other words, the people who are serious are so behind the 8 ball that they couldn't even imagine actually attending a protest in most cases. So for better or worse these kids are their proxy.

DSGamer wrote:
Ulairi wrote:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/1...

These great people are sure a class act. This stuff has got to stop.

So where can they protest? Or are you saying they shouldn't? This is a fairly typical tactic on the part of corporate media. To divide the 99% against each other. First they tried "they're weird hipsters with cell phones and trust funds". Then they tried physical threats. Now they're trying to pit them against everyone else by saying they're disrupting business and putting the little guy out of business. Any protest would do this. Any mass movement would do this.

Best part is if we read to the end of the article:

This manager also cited damages, including graffiti on his restroom walls. "For eight and a half years, there was nothing on those walls," he said. "Now it says 'Viva la Revolucion' everywhere. Yes, 'Viva la Revolucion,' but don't write it on my toilet. I let you use my facilities without being a customer and this is what I get?"

Still, he finds it hard to turn them away. "I cannot say anything against them because most of them have problems of their own," he said, noting he shares some similar concerns about the issues the protestors have put front and center.

edit: and the fact that they're being criticized for wanting to bathe. I didn't know hipsters took baths!

DSGamer wrote:
Ulairi wrote:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/1...

These great people are sure a class act. This stuff has got to stop.

So where can they protest? Or are you saying they shouldn't? This is a fairly typical tactic on the part of corporate media. To divide the 99% against each other. First they tried "they're weird hipsters with cell phones and trust funds". Then they tried physical threats. Now they're trying to pit them against everyone else by saying they're disrupting business and putting the little guy out of business. Any protest would do this. Any mass movement would do this.

They can protest but they shouldn't be rude to the small businesses that they are saying they want to help. If you're going to go in and use his bathroom, buy a cup of coffee (even though it may not be "fair trade" and "organic"). We know they have money because looking at the photos they are able to afford to shop at American Apperal and Urban Outfitters and have iPhone 4's, I think they can throw some business to the the guys they want to use.

SallyNasty wrote:
DSGamer wrote:

So where can they protest? Or are you saying they shouldn't? This is a fairly typical tactic on the part of corporate media. To divide the 99% against each other. First they tried "they're weird hipsters with cell phones and trust funds". Then they tried physical threats. Now they're trying to pit them against everyone else by saying they're disrupting business and putting the little guy out of business. Any protest would do this. Any mass movement would do this.

I think that you have a solid point, but the other side of the coin is that if they want to be taken seriously - they should act serious.

Zombies, while awesome, are not serious.

It's important for protests to have room for some level of fun in terms of being able to sustain your efforts over the long haul. I agree that, especially given the approach the media have been taking to coverage so far, it would be smart to have "serious" folks more prominently in the mix - though, given Tim O'Reilly's experience, that may be happening and getting left out because it doesn't fit the narrative the media has chosen for the Wall Street protests.

[Edit to add: I don't agree with Ulairi's reflexive labeling of protesters as hipsters, but vandalism is stupid and makes it easier to be dismissive of the protests entirely. Good protesters take an ownership attitude towards the space they occupy]

IMAGE(http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5056/5521533082_0e69b3dfc6_z.jpg)

Of course the vandalism is stupid. There is a portion of protesters in any left-ish movement that's going to see everyone as a "corporatist". Honestly, that's the biggest threat to their movement. That they become so specific that they rule out reasonable people who want to help them. People who don't think you should be judged for going to Starbucks now and then or eating food from Albertsons'. But, as I said before, many of the angry and "serious" people are fearing for their jobs. The reason why Wisconsin went differently, in my opinion, is because the protests were largely made up of people whose jobs were at risk. Working class folks who were taking this seriously and not just trying to burn down the whole thing Tyler Durden style.

DSGamer wrote:

The reason why Wisconsin went differently, in my opinion, is because the protests were largely made up of people whose jobs were at risk.

The only risk of job loss was if Act 10 and the budget were not passed.

Back on topic, this doesn't help their cause. Neither does having people shouting that it's the Jews fault because they make up 1/2 of Wall Street and the money is going to Israel. Sorry, I don't have a link to this, but audio clips were played on Mark Levin's radio show last night.

It's a sad fact that if your movement gets national attention, it is also getting the attention of the crazies. You only need look at the countless photos and videos of right-wing nutbars at Tea Party rallies spouting ultra-racist remarks (or booing gay soldiers). That doesn't help their cause, either.

WipEout wrote:

It's a sad fact that if your movement gets national attention, it is also getting the attention of the crazies. You only need look at the countless photos and videos of right-wing nutbars at Tea Party rallies spouting ultra-racist remarks (or booing gay soldiers). That doesn't help their cause, either.

The sad thing to me is that there isn't more common cause between Tea Party members and lefties. I feel like between a dislike of government, the banks and the creation of the police state there should be a solid block of people in this country who can agree on those 3 things and protest that. I know that some of the lefties wouldn't have the Tea Party folks because they shop at Wal Mart and some of the Tea Party folks wouldn't have the lefties because they're hipsters. But I feel like when you tear away the "identity politics" that Ulairi keeps picking it they have quite a bit in common.

Ulairi wrote:

They can protest but they shouldn't be rude to the small businesses that they are saying they want to help. If you're going to go in and use his bathroom, buy a cup of coffee (even though it may not be "fair trade" and "organic"). We know they have money because looking at the photos they are able to afford to shop at American Apperal and Urban Outfitters and have iPhone 4's, I think they can throw some business to the the guys they want to use.

It's good to see that rigorously fair-minded attitude has been maintained since page one--it just helps take your opinion seriously so much!

Trouble is, I'm not finding the results of the rigorous investigation that finds the protesters responsible for the heinous graffito-ing. Could you link it?

DSGamer wrote:
WipEout wrote:

It's a sad fact that if your movement gets national attention, it is also getting the attention of the crazies. You only need look at the countless photos and videos of right-wing nutbars at Tea Party rallies spouting ultra-racist remarks (or booing gay soldiers). That doesn't help their cause, either.

The sad thing to me is that there isn't more common cause between Tea Party members and lefties. I feel like between a dislike of government, the banks and the creation of the police state there should be a solid block of people in this country who can agree on those 3 things and protest that. I know that some of the lefties wouldn't have the Tea Party folks because they shop at Wal Mart and some of the Tea Party folks wouldn't have the lefties because they're hipsters. But I feel like when you tear away the "identity politics" that Ulairi keeps picking it they have quite a bit in common.

That is twice in one day I completely agree with you.

DSGamer wrote:

The sad thing to me is that there isn't more common cause between Tea Party members and lefties. I feel like between a dislike of government, the banks and the creation of the police state there should be a solid block of people in this country who can agree on those 3 things and protest that. I know that some of the lefties wouldn't have the Tea Party folks because they shop at Wal Mart and some of the Tea Party folks wouldn't have the lefties because they're hipsters. But I feel like when you tear away the "identity politics" that Ulairi keeps picking it they have quite a bit in common.

I have to disagree. A lot on the left don't have a dislike of government, they have a dislike of how government is being mismanaged. A lot on the left don't have a dislike of banks, they have a dislike of banks going unregulated. And I don't see a lot of concern from the Tea Party about any police state that doesn't involve the 2nd Amendment.

There's a lot more than just "identity politics" going on here: there's about as fundamental a difference in ideology as you can get.

edit: maybe here's a good example of how different they are. The left saw what was happening as the economy started to melt down, and thought "okay--time to run the FDR playbook and have a New New Deal." The Tea Party looked and said "ahh--they're going to tax us to pay for bailing out the banks!"

In fact, the reason the left is angry is because of the success of the Tea Party in coming along and fouling up the process of reform after the bank bailouts, but before there could be stronger health care reform and the rest of a New New Deal.

DSGamer wrote:

The sad thing to me is that there isn't more common cause between Tea Party members and lefties. I feel like between a dislike of government, the banks and the creation of the police state there should be a solid block of people in this country who can agree on those 3 things and protest that. I know that some of the lefties wouldn't have the Tea Party folks because they shop at Wal Mart and some of the Tea Party folks wouldn't have the lefties because they're hipsters. But I feel like when you tear away the "identity politics" that Ulairi keeps picking it they have quite a bit in common.

They might dislike the same things, but they dislike them for very different reasons and want very different solutions.

The Tea Party dislikes the government because it's too big and costly so their solution is to simply get rid of most of it. The Wall Street protesters dislike government because it's owned by the rich and corporations, but they want to save it and ultimately strengthen it so businesses can't do things like pollute or crash the entire world's economy.

The Tea Party dislikes the banks, but never took it any further than expressing the fact that they didn't like the banks (or the bailout). It's not like they can get behind tougher regulation because they dislike the government even more than they do the banks. The Wall Street protesters are at least being somewhat effective in saying that the entire political process has been co-opted by the rich and corporations and that's the actual problem with America. The Tea Partiers on the other hand just seem to be angry at everything.

I really wish people would stop calling it a "left vs. right" thing, or a "privileged white hipsters" thing. This is a group of American citizens who are finally standing up for themselves, organizing peaceably and within their rights, to show the government (and those with whom they take issue) how they truly feel. It is the media that is trying to polarize the movement, and a lot of people are buying into that.

Case in point:

the-- gasp! Huffington Post![/url]]Garret John LoPorto, an organizer of the Occupy Boston movement that has blogged for The Huffington Post, said today that he is working with several right-wing groups to organize collaborative demonstrations. LoPorto says he has been in touch with members of the Tea Party, the Libertarian Party, the Oath Keepers, and others.

"If this movement is confined to the left, pushed left by big media -- if it alienates the right -- then we're not doing our job," he said. Any ideological disagreements between protestors would "need to be resolved in a truly democratic forum," he said. "But it's far too soon for that."

The Occupy folks aren't trying to alienate right wing folks, they're trying to reach out to them on common interest. I wouldn't doubt if there is a large number of conservative people already participating in the protests, but my Google Fu is only bringing up Right-wing nutjob blogs claiming that the ultra-left idiot hipsters are going to get violent because said right-winger saw a picture of an anarchist once and thus can easily pick one out in a photo of a crowd.

Just for one minute, let's set aside the problems that progressives have with the messaging of the Occupy protests. Let's set aside the "hippies are dumb" and hipster complaints.

Let's just focus on the idea of protesting unfair distribution of wealth.

  • Do you believe that tax laws favor the wealthy in America?
  • Do you think that corporations have too much power?
  • Do you want to see some sort of reform that addresses these issues?

Let's start there and work our way to a more coherent discussion, ok?

OG_slinger wrote:

The Tea Partiers on the other hand just seem to be angry at everything.

Let's see what the occupy Wall Street protesters are angry about:

- Corporate greed
- War
- Jews in Wall Street
- Christians
- Climate change
- Racial & gender rights
- Lack of immigration reform
- Credit reporting agencies
- Debt
- Having to pay for college
- American election standards
- Rich not paying enough taxes
- Lack of jobs
- Healthcare
- Wages
- Nuclear power plants
- Fossil fuels
- Poisoned food supply
- Capitalism
- Bank bailouts
- Troy Davis

...and so on. The Tea Party has been mostly focused on being against too much government spending.

I agree with DS that there does seem to be some common ground between the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street.

MattDaddy wrote:
OG_slinger wrote:

The Tea Partiers on the other hand just seem to be angry at everything.

Let's see what the occupy Wall Street protesters are angry about:

- Corporate greed
- War
- Jews in Wall Street
- Christians
- Climate change
- Racial & gender rights
- Lack of immigration reform
- Credit reporting agencies
- Debt
- Having to pay for college
- American election standards
- Rich not paying enough taxes
- Lack of jobs
- Healthcare
- Wages
- Nuclear power plants
- Fossil fuels
- Poisoned food supply
- Capitalism
- Bank bailouts
- Troy Davis

...and so on. The Tea Party has been mostly focused on being against too much government spending.

I agree with DS that there does seem to be some common ground between the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street.

I can only find three of those that I would disagree with:
- Jews in Wall Street
- Christians
- Nuclear power plants
The rest of those are things in need of reform.

Wow, Matt. Really? You heard on a conservative radio show that one crazy New Yorker hates Jews, and suddenly that's what the whole Occupy Wall St movement stands for?

MattDaddy wrote:

The Tea Party has been mostly focused on being against too much government spending.

Sure, it sounds benign when you over-generalize, but I'm sure if we wanted to list all the specific bullet points that every crazy or racist Tea Partier has spouted off in front of a phone cam, you're "comparison" would hold up.

MattDaddy wrote:

I agree with DS that there does seem to be some common ground between the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street.

Oh there's is certainly common ground I think, it's just the philosophies behind each sides' opinions are diametrically opposite.