April 10, 2012 : What is the 99% Spring? Occupy Makes Hay on Foreclosures
The 99% Spring...what is it, exactly? Brooklyn-based journalist Natasha Lennard looks carefully at this new initiative in today's Salon and how it has some occupiers worried about being co-opted by moveon.org. Labor unions such as the UFCW, and Teamsters and the AFL-CIO are also participating. Occupiers note that, as of yet, there is no indication that the 99% Spring will support the May 1st General strike, which may be the first wedge between the two.
The 99% Spring promises “boot camp for protesters”, doing week-long, nation-wide trainings from April 9 to April 15 for activists dedicated to reducing income inequality in the United States.
The timing may be fortuitous as tax time places the issues foursquare in the minds of Americans preparing to file and write checks to Uncle Sam. (Funny how paying taxes used to be considered a moral obligation and patriotic duty - see above). Huffpost has details
Trumpet.com explores the background of the 99% Spring, looking specifically at the role of former Obama adviser and now part-time media celebrity Van Jones, a key organizer. Trumpet also quotes billionaire George Soros who predicts wide-spread civil disobedience and rioting in American cities if nothing is done to reduce income inequality.
Meanwhile, OWS continues to offer its own “Spring trainings” in Zuccotti Park on the weekends, featuring the latest techniques and dance steps as the “human gong,” the “melt” and the “hup.” Ny Times
from the cities :
Irate over weekend arrests, Occupy Minneapolis paid a visit to the Mayor, briefly occupying his office and gaining a Tuesday meeting. Also form the twin cities the police department now says an officer who roughed up a cameraman at Saturday's demonstration “did not follow police policy toward photo-journalists.” 9news.com
Speaking of Mayors, Occupy Denver chose to address the city's ban on “urban camping” by writing an open letter to Mayor Michael Hancock who says he was homeless as a child and urges protesters be treated humanely. Huffpost
Occupy Boston's campers agreed to relocate, temporarily, in anticipation of a visit and meeting between the leader of Brazil and Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick. Police assisted with the relocation by providing three trucks. The protesters will reportedly be allowed to return. Salem News
A federal judge has ruled that Occupy New Haven – surprise! - can't stay on the town green. Thanks to the ruling, the city's order to vacate will go into effect at 5 pm today. No midnight raid is expected though, as the judge's ruling “asked the city” to perform any forced eviction “during daylight hours.” Occupy is filing an appeal requesting a stay of the ruling in the US Court of Appeals in New York. Businessweek.com
In DC, the national park service appears ready to issue a permit that will cover the newly-merged, revitalized McPherson Square-Freedom Plaza Occupiers. The two Occupy groups will now be in a single encampment, with the previous permit issued to the Freedom Plaza group will said to be transferable to the new area. While camping and tents have been officially banned, several have reappeared. WashingtonExaminer.com
Meanwhile, the LA City Council will debate Wednesday new, proposed restrictions on City Hall Park hours of operation. The new rules would set a curfew time of 7pm, a change from the previous hours of 5Am to 10PM. Nbclosangeles.com
Occupy Salt Lake has moved into its new digs. Kcpw.com
Beyond the encampments, Occupy is in the field, and the lawns, making more and more hay around foreclosures, assisting people like 83 year-old Mercedes Robinson-Duvallon who authorities moved in to evict on her birthday. Robinson-Duvallon credits Occupy Fort Lauderdale for moving in and stopping the eviction, by taking over her lawn and house and baking her a birthday cake. Msnbc.com
Taking action on foreclosures is a key part of Phase 2 in the US...Occupy Raleigh, Occupy Greensboro, and groups Save Our Homes and Mortgage Fraud join together in Raleigh to stop an eviction. Organizer of the action cited "evidence of robo-signing," in the foreclose action on the home of Nikki Shelton, who was ordered to be out of the home by Sunday or her belongings would be “turned into trash.” Winston-Salem Journal
Occupy London : 6 protesters who had apparently moved over from the St. Paul's site to protest a temporary Olympics construction are arrested for attempting to block its construction guardian.co.uk
Occupy Russia : a newuniversity.org piece takes a look at the fate of Occupy Russia now that Putin has been “re-elected” and evaluates the latest prospects for an occupy type resistance movement there.