Occupy 2011: From sea to shining sea

For daily updates -- minute to minute, really -- about Occupy Wall Street and its satellites around the world, follow Greg Mitchell's Occupy USA blog at The Nation. See, also: OccupyTogether.

Winter is acummin early to the Northeast and "[i]t's been dumping snow here in NYC all day, high winds and 3 inches of slush on the ground. With the NYPD and FDNY confiscating six generators on Friday and this unprecedented October snow, those occupying Liberty Plaza in downtown NYC are in need of emergency supplies crucial for cold weather survival (and occupation). We've made a lot of headway on getting winter gear here in the last 48 hrs but definitely need more. Please help by purchasing or donating supplies directly. Winter gear and other necessities can be dropped off in person, delivered, or shipped." -- New York Urgent: Winter Donation Needs (OccupyWallStreet 2011-0-29).

From Atlanta and Boston to Portland, OR, and points in between like Nashville, Austin, Denver and Oakland, the local gendarmes are earnestly cooperating with demonstrators to raise consciousness about which %'s interests are paramount in the current contretemps: "In Denver," the AP reported,
the clashes between demonstrators and the police were some of the most intense since the protest groups began gathering in a downtown park more than a month ago. The police used pepper spray on the protesters, some of whom surged toward police lines....In Nashville, where state law enforcement officials arrested 29 people on Saturday, the issue was a curfew imposed last week that barred protesters from inhabiting a downtown park near the State Capitol. The legality of the curfew has been questioned, and a magistrate judge immediately released the protesters, who had been charged with trespassing, saying that the state had no authority to create such a restriction." See, Occupy Protesters Regroup After Mass Arrests (New York Times 2011-11-31)
See, also:Occupy Wall Street Arrests In Texas, Oregon (Reuters 2011-10-30) and
Wounded Iraq vet awake after Oakland protest injury (Reuters 2011-10-28).

One of the motivators of the Occupy movement is the realization by the college and immediately post-college generation that they have been sold a bill of goods.
We were told to work hard and stay in school, and that it would pay off. We are not lazy. We are not entitled. We are drowning in debt with few means of escape.

We would give anything to pay our debt, but we are un(der)employed due to the jobs crisis and lack of consumer protections and refinancing rights make things extremely difficult.

The student loan bubble may not burst with a bang, but it is slowly suffocating us.

Please share your story. We stand in solidarity with the 99 percent.
Support OWS Student Debt Day 11/12 (OccupyStudentDebt).

See, also: Sallie Mae Locks Out Student Protesters As Occupy DCMarches Against Skyrocketing Student Debt (Think Progress 2011-10-28).

Detroit may have been particularly hammered by the financial crisis, but protests there are representative of what's happening across the country. The message is the same -- the system isn't working:
Many are recent college grads, frustrated by a lack of jobs and saddled with student debt. Others work full-time, stuck with low wages. And some are middle-age Detroiters who are unemployed after working decades in the auto industry.

Despite their diverse backgrounds, the protesters with Occupy Detroit -- now camped out in Grand Circus Park for two weeks -- are united in their efforts to send a message: The system isn't working for them.

The protesters are part of a movement of people upset at the growing concentration of wealth. Income inequality in the U.S. is at its highest since at least 1967, when the census started recording household income. Challenges Don't Deter Occupy Detroit Protesters From Getting Out Their Message by Niraj Warikoo (Detroit Free Press 2011-10-29).
In a few places, though, the protests are too cheerful to be called confrontational. Take Fort Lauderdale:
If America's ultra-rich are feeling unappreciated, a trip to this weekend's Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show seemed to offer some solace. After all, it's the world's premier annual showcase for yachts, and the city bills itself unabashedly as the "Yachting Capital of the World."

But this year, not all the residents were in a welcoming mood. Members of Occupy Fort Lauderdale staged a demonstration Saturday afternoon, taking their placards on a nearly 3-mile march from downtown to the beach, where the boat show is being held. See, Occupy That Yacht by Thomas Francis (Salon 2011-10-30).
Despite the weather, Occupy Wall Street is in a holiday mood:
Anti-Wall St protesters plan to join New York City's Halloween parade on Monday and although several people have been arrested Occupy Obama at recent rallies for wearing masks, demonstrators will have a free pass for the holiday....

Occupy Wall Street has set up Occupy Halloween and said on its website, www.occupyhalloween.org, that protesters had been invited to join the 39th annual Village Halloween Parade....

Occupy Halloween urged protesters to organize costume-themed blocs, suggesting ideas such as Wall Street zombies, corporate vampires and V-masks -- the Guy Fawkes mask made popular by the graphic novel "V for Vendetta." -- Anti-Wall Street Protesters to Join NY Halloween Parade (Reuters 2011-10-26).
The Occupy movement will need your help to survive winter weather. Get information on what's needed here or stop by an Occupy site near you.

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