My first reaction to hearing about the Occupy Wall Street protesters, having lived a block from Wall St., was a mix of “ah, Adbusters, I used to read that” and “there’s no companies left on Wall Street, the protestors should be at mid-town.” It also seems that New York’s policies have been successful in trying to fill the empty space with residents, as I read about complaints from residents about the protests.
On November 6, 2011, two Iranian activists involved in the Green Movement visited Liberty Square, the heart of the Occupy Wall Street movement, to deliver messages of solidarity, and to ask for support in return.
I watched the new movie Margin Call over the weekend. Margin Call is set at a major financial institution on the day that the firm realizes that their vast holdings in subprime mortgages are essentially worthless (for a good primer on the subprime debacle and its role in creating the Great Recession, read Michael Lewis' book, The Big Short).
At Occupy Wall Street's headquarters in Liberty Plaza , New York City, teach-ins happen daily over the People's Mic (an empowering, participatory spectacle, shown here). Lecture topics vary widely, including the prison-industrial complex, land grabs in Brazil, gender equality, philosophy, environmental issues, and lots and lots of economics.
Eve Ensler, big supporter of Occupy Wall Street, accepted the invitation of an OWS occupier to participate in a dicsussion group (October 16) about how to make the OWS movement more inclusive of women and other traditionally marginalized people.
On October 18, Reverend Billy Talen and the Church of Earthalujah (formerly the Church of Stop Shopping) paid yet another visit to Occupy Wall Street in New York City. In the video below, they entertain the crowd with a very catchy tune. The lyrics of their song, "We are the 99%," are adapted from the preamble of the Declaration of Occupy Wall Street.
On October 18, 2011, the Reverend Jesse Jackson made another appearance at Occupy Wall Street in lower Manhattan. The night before, the New York City Police Department attempted to dismantle the medical tent in Liberty Park (a.k.a. Zuccotti Park) on the premise that tents are not allowed in the park. OWS medical assistants, however, contend the tent is merely used for privacy in treating the ill, and that nobody sleeps in the tent. When police swooped in, Rev. Jackson quickly linked arms with fellow occupiers to prevent the removal of the medical tent.