August 17, 2012 : Occupy Tampa, S17, Garzon Takes Assange Case

Ongoing and unnecessary tensions continue between Occupy LA and the cops. A man alleged to be affiliated with the group gets into it with a private security guard – and ends up going Mike Tyson on him. Not with a left hook or upper cut, but, yes, biting his ear (video above). The incident is said to have taken place in the downtown's Pershing Square, where Occupy LA shifted operations after being evicted from City Hall. The new location has previously been cited as an area of concern over public drinking and narcotics use, LA Times

Establishment media typically shun going deep on Occupy. Facing an accelerated publishing schedule and a chronic "need to be first” - and perpetually topical- they're tied to the latest media trend - tidbit news.

Coverage is geared to attract, but short on meaning and analysis. So it's left to documentary filmmaker Dennis Trainor and his  American Autumn : An Occudoc  to answer the questions: What does Occupy stand for and what are the movement's demands?

The film covers Occupy's 2011 salad days and will be shown from 7-10 p.m. In DC at Busboys and Poets in Mount Vernon Triangle on Monday. Huffpost

Another media cliche says Occupy is long on vision, and short on specifics. That's not the case for Occupy Arlington writers Gina Sonder and Dennis Brown, who research how the nation's military could be downsized and still keep Americans safe while the US rescues and restores its economy and infrastructure.

Legal Grind : the prosecutorial roll continues. Victories in several cases left over from 2011, after authorities arrested protesters on a variety of public disorder charges, many of them trumped up. We piqued prosecutors for a string of losses, but  absent public pressure, they secure a string of convictions on lesser charges.

The problem with public demonstrations is ...well, the public. In any gathering, there will always be a select few who decide to use the airing of grievances and demonstrations to do something brazen, like, you know, bite an ear.Or toss a red folding chair through a window.

Occupy Oakland protester Cesar Aguirre, 24 is convicted in less than 15 minutes after police present evidence he smashed up to six windows at the internal affairs office building during the Nov 2 Oakland general strike. Aguirre insists the cops have the wrong guy and maintains his innocence. Conviction on the vandalism charge is not insignificant; it can bring up to 3 years in State Prison. Sentencing is Sept. 10. KTVU

File under : right, it's called “bank deregulation” Others escape the legal grind. Occupy Charlotte sees three acquitted of “resisting arrest” with the judge saying they never should have been charged in the first place and that a “mistake has been made.”

Occupy Tampa emerges as another focal point. Previously we'd mentioned the local strip club owner who allowed Occupy Tampa to relocate to his privately-owned Voice of Freedom Park with the group agreeing to quit the premises by Sept. 15th.

Nonetheless, Tampa's City Council issues an order to quit - the club owner kind of thought he had the thing handled.


With Citizen Romney and Veep Pick set to grace the city for 4 days of grinding boredom at the RNC National Convention beginning Aug. 27th, we're tempted to say the council is panicking at the prospect of OWS and other protesters staging their own welcome party for the Romneyites

However, the city order is said to take up to 45 days to implement, so it's difficult to see what it

Assange sits in the Ecuadorean Embassy and the UK says it will honor his extradition to Sweden. Things could stay this way for awhile. Occupy Melbourne stages a small protest outside the UK Consulate.

What's next? Hashtag rumors that Assange will make some sort of statement at 2pm August 19th but the logistics seem shaky  - he would be arrested immediately by the large police contingent outside the door. NY Times

Assange is represented legally by former Spanish Judge Baltasar Garzon, who in 1998 requested that Britain extradite then former Chilean Dictator Augusto Pinochet to a Spanish courtroom to answer allegations of torture crimes committed in Chile against Spanish citizens. That extradition request was not honored by the British government, who gave Pinochet asylum, then chose to let the dictator walk rather than face the 94 counts in Spanish court.

Garzon says that GB must recognize the asylum granted by Ecuador. If they don't, Assange will appeal to the International Court of Justice. Sidney Herald

File under : damn! Boredom and isolation” in the embassy, not exactly the fanciest of digs, may ultimately get to Assange and drive him outside. His situation lacks neat precedents, but some harken back to the 15 year stand off that took place when Roman Catholic Cardinal Jozsef Mindszenty sought refuge in the U.S. Embassy in Budapest in 1956 and remained there for 15 years Christian Science Monitor

Finally, Occupiers may turn introspective, if not outright nostalgic, as S17 (one year anniversary) approaches. With hindsight, artists appear to appreciate the unique nature of Occupy 2011 before over the top cops and winter largely ended the encampments.

With this in mind, a photo retrospective - called simply “Occupy!” - on OWS is presented by the International Center of Photography in New York. After an open call for submissions;  images from Occupy 2011 are now on view each weekend through Sept. 30 in a “reclaimed barracks on Governor’s Island.” 

There’s an incredibly wide range of pictures, of surprisingly high quality,” says Brian Wallis, chief curator at ICP. He gives the credit to new digital technologies, which put photography within reach of more people than ever.

Submitted by M-Bed for UWS Digital News

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