Posted by P-town dad, a resident of the Amador Estates neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2011 at 5:34 am
My son went to
Occupy SF. He's in his early 20's and wanted to see what it was about and to possibly join the movement. He's been unsuccessfully looking for a job for two months and felt frustrated. He wanted to be a part of an historical movement. What he found there surprised him.
They have morning and afternoon assemblies to strategize. Only about 10% of the people there attended the assemblies. They were the serious Occupiers who were genuine, but they were struggling to articulate any proposed solutions.
The rest,mhe said, were homeless people and stoners. The homeless came for the camraderie and free meals. OSF cooks food in large vats, feeding long lines of people. The stoners got high or drunk. I don't know the specific percentage in that category.
After 48 hours there he felt OSF was unproductive so he came back to cozy Ptown. And then an interesting thing happened. He applied for a bunch of jobs. One of his friends knew of something that just opened and my son got the job, and now works 50 hours per week.
Before the press or public form any opinions about OSF they ought to go camp there for a couple days and see for themselves.
Posted by Vincent, a resident of the Danbury Park neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2011 at 9:44 am
Yeah, my brother went to Occupy San Francisco. There wasn't a single serious thing going on, and everybody smelled like they hadn't bathed since the previous Comanche moon. After looking over things for 5 minutes, he came back to P-town and was notified that he had won the lottery. Two million smackaroos! Just goes to show you what hard work will do. He has no intention of rejoining the dirty protesters. Let's hope the hammer gets dropped on these spoiled brats once and for all.
Posted by Adam, a resident of the Avignon neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2011 at 6:53 pm
James Fallows on the pepper spraying and arrests of UC Davis students:
"While the first 60 seconds of the 8-minute YouTube video are dominated by the shockingly calm brutality of the policeman, the rest of it is remarkable mainly for the stoicism and resolve of the protestors. You don't have to idealize everything about them or the Occupy movement to recognize this as a moral drama that the protestors clearly won. The self-control they show, while being assaulted, reminds me of grainy TV footage I saw as a kid, of black civil rights protestors being fire-hosed by Bull Connor's policemen in Alabama. Or of course the Tank Man in Tiananmen Square. Such images can have tremendous, lasting power. [...]
What is going on is a war of ideas, based in turn on moral standing. This engagement, which started in Minute 1 with police over-reaction and ended in Minute 8 with nervous police retreat, was a rout."
I expect that part about "moral standing" probably will pass by many of the readers.
Posted by Mike, a resident of the Del Prado neighborhood, on Nov 21, 2011 at 10:40 pm
What I saw on the UC Davis video was a lack of leadership. It was apparent there wasn't an operation plan with goals and what everyone's individual job was. We, and probably the officers, don't know if they were there for just crowd control or to move the protesters out. What you saw was a total lack of leadership from the top to the field supervisors. It's always easier to sit on the sideline mad make comments after the fact, but until you know what it's like to be at that type of event I'd advise everyone to let the facts come out.
I was involved at the Oakland occupy events and both times there was an operational plan with clear goals, especially the second time I went when the protesters were evicted and everything went smoothly.
Posted by Saw flim clips, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 22, 2011 at 12:05 am
Yes, Mike, it is not clear, From the first, I saw the police car was blocked on the thruway. Officers were only spraying the ones blocking on the concrete....not the ones 'around'. They were also trying to lift the sitters who were like dead weight, it would have taken a fork lift to hoist each one. So we no longer live by the 'rule of law ??? I thought we couldn't block police cars, and were suppose to obey police. I think it is terrible if anything would happen to the lady chancellor. Giving an inch, is the beginning of the end.... I think the spray was diluted.
Posted by Adam, a resident of the Avignon neighborhood, on Nov 22, 2011 at 12:35 am
Yep, would have needed a forklift, as most of those cops didn't look up to the task of arresting anyone. I guess that's why the guy who sprayed the pepper gas at the students has been relieved of his duty.
Ever hear of civil disobedience anyone? You might begin by reading Thoreau, then go on to Ghandi and Martin Luther King. But I guess fascists like each and every one of you might think educating yourselves might be the 'beginning of the end'.
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of the Vintage Hills Elementary School neighborhood, on Nov 22, 2011 at 7:48 am
Adam/Slippers/Jane, Hmmmm, people are offending you, so you react with your usual pepper spray of insults.
The officer certainly deserves disciplinary action; the chancellor and police chief are culpable. There is the possibility the officers actually needed to get by for the safety of all or to perform their duties; their reaction to the students, stupid. Not letting the police car through, also stupid.
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore, on Nov 22, 2011 at 4:33 pm
I admire the non-violent stance of the UC Davis students.
They want to dialogue with university leadership...not too much to ask for.
Many are highly educated young students, unable to find meaningful/gainful employment, it's frustrating and painful to watch.
Most want jobs that sustain them, they want lives, partners, families, homes; hard to realize if you're unemployed.
Whatever is maintaining the unemployment needs to be more critically assessed. They will not likely stop until the dialogue happens and they see a path to gainful employment that allows them to realize the American dream.
Posted by Kent, a resident of the The Knolls neighborhood, on Nov 22, 2011 at 4:53 pm
I agree with you, Cholo. But I think the students want more than gainful employment. I think they realize that the university leadership is not in any position to help them to fulfill their employment needs. Rather, I think they are motivated by a number of factors. Why must they pay higher tuition when the bottom 80% of the populace owns less than 10% of the wealth in this country? Why must they pay higher tuition when the top 1% of the populace owns 42% of the wealth? Why aren't wealthy Californians being asked to pay their fair share toward educational excellence? Why isn't the students' college president actively petitioning the legislature to raise taxes on the rich? Why are citizens motivated to do same? Jobs are important, don't get me wrong. But I think it is a sense of burning injustice that has motivated them to engage in their peaceful and courageous civil disobedience.
Posted by SteveP, a resident of the Parkside neighborhood, on Nov 23, 2011 at 8:49 am SteveP is a member (registered user) of PleasantonWeekly.com
Kent, what the hell are you talking about? Calif has one of the highest tax rates in the country. Why does the top 1% pay more than half the taxes collected? Do you really care about how this money is spent, or are you just promoting the same class envy that Owebama has used in his 'community' activist' campaigns?
As you may have seen posted on other topics in the PW, students have advocated for free tuition for studies like English, political science, philosophy, art, etc. And they wonder why they are not employable and why we don't do more to support schools---the money is being diverted by the state legislature for other social engineering and welfare programs.
Where, exactly, do you think the billions in state taxes collected are being spent? Advocate for accountability from our state leaders and stop trying to tear down everyone else so they can be at your level.
Posted by Kent, a resident of the The Knolls neighborhood, on Nov 23, 2011 at 9:28 am
Afraid you'll never be able to reach my level, Steve. You missed the boat a long time ago. Top 10% of wealthy scoop up 80% of the wealth, and you're moaning about how they pay half of the taxes collected? Do the math, pal. Oh, sorry, they didn't teach math in the barnyard in which you were educated? Your loss. I guess that's why others refer to you as the Village Idiot.
Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger, a resident of the Vintage Hills Elementary School neighborhood, on Nov 23, 2011 at 9:48 am
Kent/Slippers/Gollum, Perhaps the top percent work the hardest, are the brightest when investing (Buffet comes to mind), have higher degrees of education and therefore better earning power--there are many diligent people in that top percent and most pay taxes willingly and the rest pay anyway. The question is, how much is enough; and we already discussed that you can take everything they earn and it wouldn't be enough to solve the deficit. The country can't keep adding programs, increasing benefits, picking up the public everything on the current trajectory--there's where you need better math skills.
Posted by Patriot, a resident of the Another Pleasanton neighborhood neighborhood, on Nov 23, 2011 at 10:42 am
"Perhaps the top percent work the hardest, are the brightest when investing"
I'd like to think so, but I wouldn't call the derivatives traders at AIG, Morgan Stanley, or Bear Stearns "the brightest when investing". They proved to be dismal failures at investing and we all bailed them out with our taxes. Fixing this problem is critical both to stabilizing our economy and to restoring a sense of fairness to the system.
Posted by steve, a resident of the Parkside neighborhood, on Nov 23, 2011 at 11:39 am
Kent, I wouldn't stoop to your level. Your persistent name calling and inability to address the content of other posts displays publicly your immaturity and lack of intelligence.
You and your ilk will never be able to drag down the successful minority of our population. Your jealousy of their success is a manifestation and a parroting of the 'leadership' of your messiah. God forbid you should actually have an original or intelligent thought on your own.
You folks clamoring for forced income redistribution are a sad, sorry lot. You'd never think to accomplish anything on your own through hard work. No, that thought never occurred to you.....it's just too much effort for the sloths in our society. Oh well...not changing any minds (or mndless) here....off to the mountain chalet for some well deserved R & R.
Posted by Kent, a resident of the The Knolls neighborhood, on Nov 23, 2011 at 3:48 pm
What could be simpler. The top 10% owns 80% of the wealth in the United States. Have that top 10% pay at least 80% of the nation's tax burden. The math really is quite clear. I can understand why someone would claim the top 10% should pay MORE than 80% of the nation's tax burden; for so doing would not impinge upon basic life needs and comforts. [removed]
Posted by Kathleen Ruegseggerr, a resident of the Vintage Hills Elementary School neighborhood, on Nov 23, 2011 at 5:18 pm
Gollum, Cute bit about the darkness; if that were true, I should be running into you any moment now.
I think individuals should be able to save for their retirement--privately. Don't think taxpayers need to make up for the shortfalls on public pensions. And I would rather teachers made more now. You seem so challenged by the notion that people are earning their income through a contract with their employers, just like yours. Nothing to be grateful for this Thanksgiving?
Posted by Kent, a resident of the The Knolls neighborhood, on Nov 23, 2011 at 11:10 pm
Fat Kath: What does an individual's ability to save for his/her retirement have to do with 10% of population owning 80% of the wealth and not paying their fair taxes.
You probably can't conceive of a low-income earner with kids not having enough to save, right? I guess you'd rather see low-income earners and their children die on average 10 years earlier than the wealthy because public pensions are too high, there's those darned working people's unions, and the Constitution doesn't say anything about life expectancy (only life). [removed]
Posted by Stacey, a resident of the Amberwood/Wood Meadows neighborhood, on Nov 23, 2011 at 11:28 pm Stacey is a member (registered user) of PleasantonWeekly.com
Yea, wouldn't want any public pension funds making money from kicking low-income earners' children out onto the streets through conversion of rent-controlled units to market. How much did you make off that deal, Jane?
Posted by Kathleen Ruegseggerr, a resident of the Vintage Hills Elementary School neighborhood, on Nov 24, 2011 at 6:32 am
Gollum, I don't have to imagine it--been there, done that. I think other posters have mentioned that you don't seem to be bothered by the fact your children and grandchildren will be trying to pay the debt caused by public excesses. Hope you are leaving a nest egg for them so they can have a decent life.
Posted by Kathleen Ruegseggerr, a resident of the Vintage Hills Elementary School neighborhood, on Nov 24, 2011 at 7:40 am
Social programs, wars . . . excessive?
I hope firefighters, librarians, nurses, teachers earn very good salaries that allow them to save and invest privately for their retirement.
You still haven't said _why_ the "filthy rich" must give back to society any more than they do, or _how much more_ is more, or how you would propose they should give back more, other than because you say so.