What is the occupy protest about

nick3's picture
nick3 started the topic in Saturday, 5 Nov 2011 at 9:20am

Can anyone tell me what the hell the occupy protest is about and what they want to achieve.

benski's picture
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benski Saturday, 5 Nov 2011 at 5:33pm

If you're serious nick3, and not just looking for a chance to sneer at a bunch of "dole bludging hippies" as you are occasionally wont to do, read Tim Dunlop's piece from earlier in the week on The Drum.

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floyd Saturday, 5 Nov 2011 at 10:48pm

Good work benski.

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ben-colyer Monday, 7 Nov 2011 at 12:01am

What is it about? ........ Corporate greed.

What do they want to achieve?..... to stop corporate greed.

from reports I've heard, many of the protesters are simply happy to be protesting about anything and are unable to boil it down to a specific issue ("dole bludging hippies"). If they do have a specific issue they are unable to articulate what they want to achieve (angry uni students). There are a handful of protesters who do know the answer to both questions but have trouble getting their message through to the masses (retired academic).

It is a whole lot more complicated than my simplistic take on it, but US and Euro greed and corruption is where the trouble stems from.

enzed's picture
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enzed Monday, 7 Nov 2011 at 6:09am

I've been involved with the Occupy Sydney movement since the start of the first occupation of Martin Place. The Occupy movement worldwide started in support of Occupy Wall Street & the uprising in Spain. Both the US & Europe are obviously in financial trouble so these two came to be through financial hardship. Particuarly how the banks got themselves in the poo through their own irresponsible actions, then billions of taxpayers dollars were used to bail them out- Goldman Sachs etc. The core fundamental for Occupy is the 99% vs the 1%. This is to do with the current financial & governmental systems around the world being in place to benefit the top 1% of the earners in the world while making it harder for the other 99%. How much money is too much money for these people? Even if they gave a small amount each, so much good could be done in the world to combat climate change,end starvation etc. The reason why people seem like they have no one reason for protesting is because there are many things in the world that need fixing because the status quo is unsustainable. All of these things are able to be traced back to the 1% & their pursuit of the mighty dollar over any social or enviromental obligations. We are all part of the 99%(unless there's any company CEO's reading this) & if you're unhappy with the way things are going we have the numbers so get up off your seat & say, Ï'm not gonna take this shit anymore!" So yeah, that's what Occupy Sydney is about. Part of a worldwide movement to make the world a better place through people power. If that's a crime, then I'm guilty as charged your honour!

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floyd Monday, 7 Nov 2011 at 8:20am

Standby enzed you are about to be bombarded.

It seems you have blindly walked into nick3's little ruse. If you want an insight into the depths this forum topic might now go to check out earlier forums on the pollution tax.

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stunet Monday, 7 Nov 2011 at 10:26am

G'day Enzed,

First up, I agree with what you lot are doing, there is a balance that needs to be corrected. However, the thing that troubles me about the 'Occupy' movement is that it appears a protest in the abstract. The enemy is clear but the answers aren't and so it seems like there is a general unease about where the economic system is taking us, yet without any real solutions for protestors to rally around. Just saying 'They are greedy' isn't enough for me. 'They' (the greedy ones) are just displaying a trait that has been in humans - to varying degrees - since day dot.

We can't change it by traditional means ('smash the state', 'viva la revolution') as we don't have an alternative system in waiting. Therefore it can only be done by policy. And policy is a very slow and unsexy way to change the world (How do you sing campfire songs about policy changes?) Also, many of the changes suggested - limits to CEO pay etc. - run counter to the system that has provided immense benefits such as education, medicine, health and law. They are unfortunate extremes of a fruitful system.

The advanced capitalist world is incredibly complex and if you engage with it - even on the fringes - I feel you are somehow complicit in what is going wrong. For that reason, I would feel less comfortable protesting than when the solution is obvious (Note: not necessarily easier but demarcated from human nature.)

I should say that, deep down, I'm a capitalist determinist. I don't believe capitalism to be an experiment we are passing through but a system we've arrived at by trial and error because it is the best fit for human nature.

I should also say I have a lot of contradictory thoughts...

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mk1 Monday, 7 Nov 2011 at 1:02pm

The reason that there is a lack of direction in the occupy movement is that the problems with the current system are many, diverse and etheral. To say that the movement is right but i won't support it because their is a lack of clear direction is bely the complexity of the problems. The greatest business minds can barely agree on the problems let alone a solution so the protest we have now is most likely the best we can expect, and it is in no way invalidated by that. Quite frankly the system has a habit of getting imbalanced and having people rise up in protest without full knowledge of the problems or solutions, cetainly. Perhaps with the internet we have the best chance we've ever had in providing clarity and information to protesters.

So what's at stake - what is the problem, is it capitalism or is it captured capitalism being used to benefit those who can control the system? One only has to do a cursury web search to see plenty of charts on the concentration of wealth going to the upper eschelons. It quickly becomes clear that the system we have (capitalist/socialist/left/right/whatever) is a tool for manipulating the labour of the many to benefit the power groups in charge at that point (be it religious groups, royal dynasties, military regimes, financiers, corporatists, unions or political groups). This time its against financial corporatists but the problems is still the same - power groups manipulating the system for their own benefit.

For mine, some suggestions would be:
- re-regulate the financial markets. futures and derivative markets should only available to participants in those industries and should be regulated to 1 to 1.5 times 1 years production as they originally were.
- end fractional reserve banking. Money doesn't exist, its simply a concept used as a unit of measure and yet through the power to issue and control the flow and direction of money one can acquire the capital of others without working to attain it.
- flat taxes, no favouritism
- limit government contributions. a budget of $x per year, per party. period.

Not that it will happen or does it matter, the market will reallocate itself, one way or another.

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mk1 Monday, 7 Nov 2011 at 1:15pm

St pauls institute contributor (where UK protests have shut the catherdral and led to 2 high profile resignations so far) on the underlying problems with the system (re: fractional reserve banking)

http://www.stpaulsinstitute.org.uk/dialogue/peter-selby/opinion/2011/sep...

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benski Monday, 7 Nov 2011 at 3:52pm

Stunet,

From what I've picked up over here in the US (which amounts to little more than watching the Daily Show and reading ABC news Australia), it's less about corporate greed and more about government policy that favours that top 1%. I'm pretty sure it began soon after Warren Buffett made the point that he should not pay a lower rate of tax than his cleaning lady (not because of that comment exclusively but following the national debate that led BUffett to make that comment). Taxes over here are the reverse of Australia, the rate declines as you earn more.

With that comment from Buffett the Fox news machine went into overdrive pointing out that 50% of americans don't pay tax and that they should get some "skin in the game" before people like Buffett should shell out yet more tax. This bottom 50% of americans, half the bloody country, controls 2.5% of the wealth. That's it. Yet apparently they should be contributing more of that tiny portion of wealth to cover the govt deficit. So from my understanding the protests came out of that situation. Not some "smash capitalism" story (although there will be those who have that focus that will garner the media's attention) but rather change govt policy to benefit the 99% of rather than the 1%. Especially when the tea party-driven republicans, who will most likely win the next election, are saying that the poorest 50% should shell out more rather than the megarich.

Not sure if it's available from Oz anymore but if you want to watch the Daily Show clip I got these numbers from, it's here:

Part 1
http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/thu-august-18-2011/world-of-class-warf...

Part 2
http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/thu-august-18-2011/world-of-class-warf...

It's full on, one of the fox guys reckons these folk aren't poor because they own fridges and microwaves. This is despite "poor" being an official census classification defined by earnings of $22k a year for a family of four. Go figure.

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batfink Tuesday, 8 Nov 2011 at 10:04am

Nick3, it's complex, but the basics have been covered here.

Stu, man that is a defeatist attitude. It seems the point of it is partly as a reaction to the fact that people just found out what actually happened that caused the GFC.

And the other point of it was to say 'not good enough, come up with something better.'

Capitalism failed Stu. If you haven't worked it out yet you are behind the curve (but probably still ahead of, I don't know, 99%?)

Anyways, you can sit there and take it up the arse until someone comes through with a system that everybody agrees is a better system, or you can 'occupy', and protest in one or more ways, and say not good enough.

It's a warning shot across the boughs of western government. If it doesn't get fixed, and if the masses suffer so that the 1% can continue to prosper, then revolution follows.

I'm not a history buff Stu, but tell me, did any of the political revolutions of the past have a 'ready to wear' system up and running? The French, the Russians, anyone?

I don't know, maybe. I don't think the Libyans do, but that didn't stop them getting rid of Gaddafi. Revolution doesn't come with warnings, normally, but you'd be crazy to write this off because of a lack of clarity of aims, or not having a freaking mission statement and a public relations adviser and a marketing team.

Maybe they are protesting against mission statements, public relations and marketing BS. Maybe the next system is not having a ruling elite, maybe anarchy. Maybe marketing will be outlawed and marketing practitioners will be burnt at the stake.

I look forward to some spirited responses.

enzed's picture
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enzed Thursday, 10 Nov 2011 at 5:42am

Love your work Batfink. If I'm asked what my answers are to solve all the ills of the world my answers are pretty vague too. That's why we get together in working groups to discuss various topics and the best ways to attain the type of society we wish to achieve. In regards to the current financial system it's a mess. Dragging figures from mid-air then telling someone they're indebt to x amount is bullshit. Cash needs to brought back to be = with the gold value to tie it into something physical. Huge multi-nationals need to be broken up into smaller companies that put back into their local communities. The Robinhood Tax needs to be introduced. At present all wire transfers between large companies/ financial institutions are done tax-free. A 1% tax on these transactions would raise 120 million pounds in a single year in the UK alone! This money could then be used for such worthy causes as renewable energy schemes, ending famine in Africa etc. I'm sure the top end of town would'nt struggle too much with a 1% tax! The main things that the Occupy movement really needs is 1. people to break free of their complacency & realise that you can stand up & say enough is enough 2. people to realise we're all global citizens & because people are struggling in other parts of the world we do have an obligation to help them 3. shear wait of numbers. In Spain they got a million people marching. The government had no choice but to implement social/economic policies the people demanded. 4. For people to realise that the pursuit of money at all costs is a grubby, futile pastime. Caring for your fellow humans & Mother Earth & all her creations has to come first. I don't wish to debate anything with anyone on here as I'm not an intellectual. I'm a doér that can see a better future ahead than the one we're currently heading towards. If you want to get involved with Occupy check out the website www.occupysydney.org We are the 99% & we're here to stay!!

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floyd Thursday, 10 Nov 2011 at 6:38am

Suggest you check out this link ...... This Irishman sums it up beautifully ..........

mk1's picture
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mk1 Thursday, 10 Nov 2011 at 9:36am

Please view this Tedx video - outlines the need to redesign money itself to realease us from the ever expanding debt model we have now. Its important to realise that the money system is set up to benefit those who issue credit and surreptisiously steal from those who go into credit.

http://jembendell.wordpress.com/2011/10/19/tedx-talk-on-the-need-to-re-d...

Please see this video from Robert Reich which touches on the history of social movements and the need for them to develop and clarify over time - as all have in the past.

http://front.moveon.org/robert-reich-at-occupysf-you-cant-stop-this-once...

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yorkessurfer Wednesday, 14 Dec 2011 at 5:35am

I noticed nick3 has failed to respond to this thread that he started. There are some pretty valid points raised by a few of the posts! Anything to add nick or did you learn something? This 12 minute speech on the failures of the monetary system deserves a second look! Well done mk1.
http://jembendell.wordpress.com/2011/10/19/tedx-talk-on-the-need-to-re-d...

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nick3 Wednesday, 14 Dec 2011 at 9:27am

Sorry that I haven't replied as I have been to busy working and keeping people in there jobs then to reply to a bunch of looser's who don't want to earn there keep but want to have the same wealth.
The concept of having to earn your place in society has been around since we have existed on earth.

zenagain's picture
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zenagain Wednesday, 14 Dec 2011 at 10:09am

Yeah Nick, you keep working to keep these 'loosers' in their jobs.

http://au.pfinance.yahoo.com/photos/photo/-/11943444/australias-highest-...

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floyd Thursday, 15 Dec 2011 at 5:53am

hey nick3,

you are the funniest dickhead alive. so you are hard at it earning your keep and you expect everyone else to do the same. well fuckwit try telling that to all you conservative party mates as well. educate yourself and read Nicolas Shaxson's book Treasure Islands - Tax Havens and The Men Who Stole The World and find out why the rich and their corporations pay little or no tax.

sit there as smug as you like boyo but you're in the shit like the rest of us, only thing is, you don't know it. dickhead.

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yorkessurfer Thursday, 15 Dec 2011 at 8:14am

Time magazine announced today that the person of the year in 2011 is the Protester!

True we in Australia are luckier than most and much of the protests here have been in sympathy to those overseas who are less fortunate than us.

But we must be careful that the socially aware country we have isnt eroded by the nick3's of the world who would love our country to become a like the U.S, where the richest 400 Americans control more wealth than the poorest 150 million Americans!

nick3's picture
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nick3 Thursday, 15 Dec 2011 at 7:14pm

Them are fighting words Floyd.Please tell me what have you contributed to this world or helping the poor.

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my_opinion Friday, 16 Dec 2011 at 7:07am

There's got to be a fine balance. The idea of a Robinhood Tax is terrible and would a) remove the desire to work harder and smarter to achieve more, b) go against human nature which is to seek continual improvement, and c) reduce the overall productivity in the economy and bring the economic equilibrium point down below its full potential. In real terms, that means we're all poorer.

Why would someone bother studying hard, going to university for 3+ years, gather heaps of knowledge and experience, work long hours, take all the risk, endure all the stress etc to start up a business that employs 10 people or 1000 people, if they are going to get taxed at an overly higher rate than their neighbour who strives for and achieves much less? The hard worker is already paying more tax on a flat rate anyway because he earns more, and thats fair enough. But where is the incentive to earn $100,000 if someone is going to take 49% (pre-Coalition era) and give it to someone who for whatever reason earns much less??

I can understand the Occupy protests being against inethical practices, such as overvaluing weak assets, trading insurance swaps, fudging the figures etc. But I completely disagree with the whole sentiment of 'give me more, just because you have more than I've got'. Socialism sounds good but it doesn't work, the history books have proven it time and time again.

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yorkessurfer Saturday, 17 Dec 2011 at 4:27am

Well we all have an opinion but does saying that socialism has failed mean that capitalism has not? Is a system that allows 400 people acquire more wealth than 150 million not a failure?

Back in the 1980's I lived in the U.S for a while and when I said I was from Australia people would say "oh thats that socialist country down under". I would say what do you mean? "Well you have free medicare, free university education(back then), the dole".

So if we are a socialist country is Australia a failure?

Perhaps a more pure form of capitalism would be to disallow(or cap) the concept of inheritance. I would argue many of those 400 richest Americans have taken advantage of being born into wealth. If we really want the best people to rise to the top would that not prevent the George W Bush's of the world from getting hold of the reins and leading us all into the chaos we now find ourselves in?

enzed's picture
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enzed Sunday, 18 Dec 2011 at 2:55am

@my_opinion Monies raised from a Robin Hood Tax would go towards those that don't have a roof over their head, don't know where their next meal is coming from & don't have access to clean drinking water. Not to those that live a few suburbs away in slightly poorer neighbourhood. Also the tax would apply to transactions between large corporations, not small business/ Mum & Dad investors etc. Humanity needs a huge shift towards individuals being content with their lot & not continually striving for "more, more, more"as is drilled into us from a young age. Anything over & above what you need, give it away to someone that needs it. Such a simple thing to do, but made hard because of the way Western society conditions us to accumulate. Whether that be wealth, material possessions, food or whatever.

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velocityjohnno Sunday, 18 Dec 2011 at 3:30am

Top post my_opinion. If you severely remove incentives to improve one's lot, people just give up. All those advocating socialist policies here, ask yourself, why did so many people defect from the USSR? There wasn't a flow of people going from the West over there, for a reason.

You see, when "From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs," is practically enacted, what happens is the motivated individuals either leave, go underground, or reduce the output of their abilities to the pittance handed out as "needs". The idea that one person can be all-seeing, and determine what every one else "needs" better than the individuals themselves can is a continuing insult to human intelligence. And yet it keeps on coming back...

Australia, since about 1905, has never been without strong central planning - wage and arbitration commissions, ACTU, Reserve Bank, ACCC, arbitrated minimum wages and conditions which see any jobs under them vanish overseas. A new Commission to oversee the Carbon Tax is coming (note: Canada just left the Kyoto Protocol): layers and layers of unproductive bureaucracy resulting in higher taxes and costs for businesses which create wealth for a society and employ individual people. So businesses shrink in correlation with increase in interference. The only place they thrive is where inept policy encourages them to misallocate: for example negative gearing rules and centrally set low interest rates have contributed to a misallocation housing 'bubble' and bloated Real Estate industry. If you take a look at the history of postwar Japan, they were able to remove regulation and taxation each year for the entirety of the 1950's and most of the '60's, and the result was a tenfold INCREASE in the amount of taxation the Japanese government received, as the much more Free economy generated enormous wealth for the society.

And a discontinuation of inheritance would see capital either flee, or be misallocated by those 'awarded' it at the expense of those who actually know how to deploy it. Family businesses would be nipped in the bud after a single generation, and the positions filled by those who are not naturally able enough to start such ventures. Sounds like a recipe for disaster. And if you are to look at this as a panacea to avoid a 'Bush' taking power, take the time to note that Stalin rose to his heights within a single lifetime and many millions died.

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yorkessurfer Sunday, 18 Dec 2011 at 8:08am

Jono sounds like your saying Australia since 1905 has been a failure? Here we are more than a century later with unemployment and interest rates around 5%, the lowest national debt in the developed world, and one of the highest standard of living? All this under a Labor government entering its fifth year in office!

Japan's financial balloon inflated quickly but eventually burst. It was unsustainable. And dont blame the tsumani, they have been a financial basket case for at least a decade.

As for a cap on inheritance Bill Gates has stated he only wants to leave $50 million to his kids. A huge amount but less than 1/1000th of his total wealth. Im sure they will be fine.

Your argument about people naturally inheriting the ability to succeed sounds like "Eugenics" or the belief that people are genetically born to rule/succeed or be criminals depending on what their parents were like. What about James Murdoch? I know there is a few in the Liberal Party with a "born to rule mentality"!

Your communist arguements are so typical of those on the Right. "Reds under the bed!"

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floyd Sunday, 18 Dec 2011 at 8:10am

Quote from page 77 of Nicholas Shaxson's book - Treasure Islands - Tax Havens and The Men Who Stole The World .........

" but to get an idea of how well most people are doing, you need to look at inequality too. In the offshore (tax havens) era, from the mid-1970s onwards, inequality has exploded in country after country. Accordingly to the US Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average American non-supervisory worker actually earned a lower hourly wage in 2006, adjusted for inflation, than in 1970. Meanwhile, the pay of American CEOs rose from under 30 times the average worker's wage to almost 300 times.

Paul Keating in his recent After Words - The Post-Prime Ministerial Speeches also cites that in the last 30 years (i.e. since President Reagan) real wages in America have NOT increased at all while at the same time wages in Australia have increased just over 30%.

This discussion is not about socialism. Its about people and corporations paying their fair share of tax, regardless of their income, so that we (individuals and corporations) can enjoy the benefits of living in a community .... i.e. schools, roads, health care, public transport, reliable water and power.

It all comes down to greed. We all have it but if it wins out here we will be all be fucked.

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non-local Sunday, 18 Dec 2011 at 9:44am

dole bludging hippies the lot of them, get to work you bludgers!!!

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yorkessurfer Sunday, 18 Dec 2011 at 10:27am

Get back in your small spinning cage, make sure your blinders are fixed firmly in place, and keep running non-local!

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barley Sunday, 18 Dec 2011 at 10:58am

Sounds like a bunch of idiot hippies causing trouble and wasting honest hard working citizens money cleaning and clearing their shit up. Don't these smelly freaks have a job? Wish I could sit around in the middle of the city and puff peace pipes all day. Maybe we could march them off a cliff somewhere in oz over a surf break and name it occupiers? Lets start up our own OCCupy demonstration and get this 40yr old world champion a public holiday !!hahahahahah

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vlad Sunday, 18 Dec 2011 at 11:22am

Snore! – Sorry . . . . But how many "movements" have we all seen come & go? While I appreciate the fact there a few people out there who are pissed off enough to get off there butts I do think all that energy is generally misdirected (based on what little I have seen) Firstly blaming capitalism is incorrect as what we are looking at is not capitalism (maybe more like mercantilism? Any econ. heads in the house can clarify?) We have government enforced fiat currency so our money is worth nothing. If you try to use any sort of alternative currency the men with guns will quickly show up at your door drag you way & throw you in a cage. The very life blood of our economic system is worthless & can be easily manipulated allowing the thieving [email protected] in power to print up money, tax & diddle with interest rates at will. The state is the problem not the solution so as long as we continue to use the violence of the state for a solution we are doomed.

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mk1 Monday, 19 Dec 2011 at 11:55am

vlad - in my eyes we have 'credit capitalism' where the ability to issue electronic 1s and 0s in the form of debt money (honestly, if anyone doesn't already know that money is debt issued from nothing by private banks you are way behind the curve - google it, there's thousands of sites explaining this fact) allows the surreptitious theft of real wealth (not money) and the empowerment of the credit issuer within society.

A good start would be our own Steve Keen, winner of the Revere award for correctly predicting the financial crisis and the reasons why (ahead of Nouriel Roubini)

http://www.debtdeflation.com/blogs/2009/01/31/therovingcavaliersofcredit/

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yorkessurfer Monday, 19 Dec 2011 at 11:21pm

Found some interesting facts on wealth distribution in the U.S as it relates to racial demographics.

The average wealth of white Americans(total assets minus debts) - everyone from Bill Gates and Donald Trump to those crack whores you see on the TV show COPS.....................$125,000.

The average hispanic American...................$8000.

The average black American.........................$3000.

200 years after they abolished slavery not much has changed in the land of the free!

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farrah Wednesday, 21 Dec 2011 at 7:53am

Very interesnting posts, It seems to me that this whole situation can very easily explained but the answers are very complex. The current shit soup the world in in has it's roots in greed and selfishness. These two motivations are the hallmarks of the baby boomer generation that took us through the revolutions of the 60s and 70s as teenages and which heralded the mainstreaming of drugs, free love, the breakdown of the family unit, womens liberation, civil libertarians and the rights of the individual.
They then woke up in the 80's put down the bong and realized they had inherited the earth and gave us "greed is good", paid off their cheap houses and raised their kids.
They then all became real estate moguls bought investment properties to avoid tax and drove the average mortgages to the level where their children have to go into a lifetime of servitute to pay them off.
And now the kicker these wonderful human beings who have led us to this place now sell their assests, buy massive caravans give all their wealth to multi-nationals and deny that they have precided over the whole thing and that their lives of self indulgence and excess haven't contributed to climate change and environmental degridation.
The facts are all there for people to see the 1% versus the 99% is all true but who voted in the John Howards and GW Bush's?
If your looking for someone to blame forget the banks, look closer to home, look at your parents and grandparents ask them if they understand how shit things look from your perspective and if they believe in climate change ask them if they are going to leave you their wealth or are they about to embark on the next overseas trip.
So in my opinion the occupy movement is really a group of people who have worked out things ain't right but are really only attacking the head of the baby boomers beast that has plenty of life in it yet.

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roolf Thursday, 22 Dec 2011 at 8:48am

good summary Farrah, i cannot agree more regarding your points about baby boomers.

the worst thing is another part of their revolution you have described above was environmental awareness and generally embracing a more natural life, but now they are the biggest consumers on the planet with their show-home properties and big 4WDs.

they seem to have rejected the more natural way of life raising the narcissistic generation Y who are obsessed with fake tans and unnecessary medical procedures

baby boomers are the sell out generation

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floyd Thursday, 22 Dec 2011 at 4:14pm

Nothing like colourful generalisations boys. Can I just pick up farrah on one point ... the parents and grandparents of baby boomers went through the great depression and WW2, some even WW1. While baby boomers can rightfully be criticised for many things their parents generally had it tough and worked very hard for everything they owed. E.g. My father lied about his age to get into the Army, thereby spending his 17th birthday in uniform. His country then packed him off to the fight in islands for 5 years. In retirement he got a caravan and went on well deserved holidays.

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farrah Friday, 23 Dec 2011 at 7:24am

Sorry floyd, I'm not refering to people who lived through the world wars i have met and had the honour to know well many of these incredible human beings who stood up when the world was in crisis and put their lives on the line for our future.
My beef is with those born directly after. Unfortunalety for us many of them surfed or enjoyed the beach lifestyle. After they enjoyed travelling up and down coastlines to beautiful unspoilt places living peace and free love they bought up cheap land and became the greatest consumers the world has seen.
Just look at all the classic surf spots where the hippie trail went and you will see the developers followed from Noosa, Surfers Paradise(what a joke) Byron, Lennox, Angourie, Cresent on the east coast coast Margrets on the west the whole Bells area and they even went to Bali and we can all see peace, love and respect for the natural world there.

The sad thing is that there are people on this forum who seem to think that things are all good, that a mortgage that takes 30 years to pay off is fair and that its OK our children have been born into a time that will see them have to fix the problems of a generation that will linger in life draining more and more resources then die right when the shit will be hitting the fan.
WAKE UP

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reauneil Sunday, 25 Dec 2011 at 3:41am

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rushy Monday, 26 Dec 2011 at 9:25pm

A response on behalf of "baby Boomers"

In the line at the supermarket, the cashier told an older woman that she should bring her own grocery bags because plastic bags weren't good for the environment.

The woman apologised to him and explained, "We didn't have the green thing back in my day."

The clerk responded, "That's our problem today. Your generation did not care enough to save our environment."

He was right -- our generation didn't have the green thing in its day.

Back then, we returned milk bottles, coke bottles and beer bottles to the corner shop. They sent them back to the factory to be washed and sterilised and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really were recycled. But we didn't have the green thing back in our day.

We walked up stairs, because we didn't have an escalator in every store and office building. We walked to the corner shop and didn't climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time we had to go two hundred yards into town. But she was right. We didn't have the green thing in our day.

Back then, we washed the baby's nappies because we didn't have disposables. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up 240 volts - wind and solar power really did dry the clothes. Kids got hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new logoed clothing. But that old lady is right; we didn't have the green thing back in our day.

Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house - not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen the size of Queensland . In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn't have electric machines to do everything for us. When we packaged a fragile item to send in the post, we used a wadded up old newspaper to cushion it, not bubble wrap. Back then, we didn't fire up an engine and burn petrol just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power. We exercised by working so that we didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity. But she's right; we didn't have the green thing back then.

We drank from a fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time we had a drink of water. We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the razor blades instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull. But we didn't have the green thing back then.

Back then, people took the bus and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their mums into a 24-hour taxi service. We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances. And we didn't need a computerised gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest Dominos Pizza.

But isn't it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just because we didn't have the green thing back then?

It's so easy to point the finger, isn't it??

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spongebob Monday, 26 Dec 2011 at 11:26pm

What to do with the industrial war machine when the wars over?

A washing machine in every home?

A car in every driveway?

A consumer born every minute?

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vlad Sunday, 1 Jan 2012 at 12:22pm

Farrah mentioned “The current shit soup the world in has it's roots in greed and selfishness” I don’t know that I have a problem with greed & selfishness, self interest is natural to most living organisms & is nothing new, I think the problem comes when you have a group of individuals who have access to a all power violent apparatus like the state & can turn its guns on who they deem fit. All these special interest groups be it unions, greens or occupy people are all wrestling to get there hands on the gun & inflict there agenda on the rest of us, At the end of the day they are planning to use violence to get what they want which makes there movement fundamentally immoral.

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yorkessurfer Monday, 2 Jan 2012 at 5:15am

Well vlad up until this point all the violence has been directed at the protesters and not by them. Like the 84 year old woman who was pepper sprayed by the police in Seattle recently? Its been reported in the US papers that the strategy against the protesters is being organised by the Department of Homeland Security.

The question is why would the government make war on peaceful protesting citizens?

The answer can be revealed by one of the demands of the OWS movement. It is the closing of a little known loophole allowing members of congress to pass legislation affecting corporations in which they themselves are investors.

Occupy is threatening personal congressional profit streams.

Demanding transparency of a system that allows politicians to get rich from their own legislation was always going to end in people "having the shit kicked out of them"!

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yorkessurfer Wednesday, 4 Jan 2012 at 2:06am

In the U.S local police forces would normally manage protesting groups depending on how it is affecting the day to day workings of that city or state. It is a constitutional right of Americans to protest. Its not North Korea after all.

The involvement of the Department of Homeland Security suggests a Federal involvement in quelling the protests when it is usually more concerned with terrorism etc.

As for the demands of the OWS movement think Dick Chenney, his association with Halliburton, and the contracts awarded to them in Iraq/Afganistan to understand how the loophole that the protesters are against was utilised by the previous administration.