Global Day of Protest #occupywallstreet #occupymissoula #occupyhelena

by jhwygirl

This post has been updated

Mainstream media is reporting that #occupywallstreet is calling for a Global Day of Protest tomorrow (Saturday), with over 800 cities participating.

OccupyHelena get’s the nod here as Saturday is their first General Assembly (GA). Hill Park, time apparently unspecified. I found this link (warning: facebook link) on twitter.

Also giving a nod to OccupyButte which as Turner reports below gets underway Saturday morning at the Butte Plaza Mall, noon. There was a meeting earlier this week at the Butterfly Cafe if I’m remembering my twitter feed.

I have to say that it can be maddening to some to watch something so truly organic get up and running. Me? I’m loving watching it. It’s a beautiful thing. Beautiful.

OccupyBozeman got underway Friday with a march on Main Street.

OccupyMissoula starts off tomorrow morning (it’s one-week-old birthday) at 11 a.m., at the fishes near the Higgins Street bridge at Caras Park. They’ve got a rally and march planned – and then from 1 to 10 p.m. is a OccupyMissoula ArtJam, of which I’m sure we’ll hear Lizard down there jammin’ on some poetry.

Not only that – don’t forget that Missoula still has the wonderful Farmer’s Market going too – so there’ still time to stock up on locally grown and produced preserves and cheeses. I’m thinking this is the next-to-the-last one.

I want to explain what a General Assembly is, as I’ve had people ask. I can only describe it how I’ve seen it.

GA’s are like a people’s congress. Everyone get’s to participate and everything is a negotiation – all the while, everyone works together in organization towards a goal of determining what it is that government should be. One general cause that morphed this together is the skewed wealth distribution system of government that essentially has Wall Street running the show (and anyone can call me on that and I don’t mind), but from there the search for commonality is very much part of the GA process.

People of all ages and backgrounds are attending OccupyMissoula. There are even people driving in from outside Missoula. I’ve seen 3 generations of a family (Grandparents, Daughter and grandaughter). It’s wonderful.

OccupyMissoula is facing some issued down there related to security (yet alone weather!) I have much respect for the organizing going on down there as not only are they working on their own structure, they’re feeding and clothing and generally addressing homeless issues down there.

I can tell you that the very first late afternoon as they were just getting started down there last Saturday I had a homeless woman come up and berate me because all that was left to eat was salad. And potato soup. She didn’t eat potato soup because of the starch and the salad was..well SALAD as she clearly had to let me know. No protein! What was she to do?

I was a little dumbfounded (I wasn’t in charge..but really, no one was in charge) and rolled out a response about the Poverello serving dinner and she literally screamed at me and said that she hadn’t “planned to go there and now she was hungry!”

OccupyMissoula is in need of a number of things – here is a list – things like blankets and gloves…food…propane (done with that grill for the season? Why not just donate that gas?). Tarps are another thing. Garbage bags.

Anyways…I will update this as info comes in (either in the comments or email me at hotmail dot com)

  1. JC

    Thanks for the update jhwygirl! I just got off the phone with my buddy in Helena, who’s helping to focalize OccupyHelena. The OccupyHelena meeting tomorrow is at 10am, and it’s next to their farmer’s market. I’m kinda amazed you found the website because outside of him and I, I didn’t think that anyone knew about it yet, and he was waiting until their GA tomorrow to get to work on it.

    Be that as it may, I had a lot of fun last night adapting our OccupyMIssoula materials for them to use… a kind of rapid development model for growing the movement. And I was able to answer a lot of questions about how a first general assembly can run.

    I’ve been out of the loop here at 4&20 the last two weeks, as all of my free time has been spent helping get things organized and coordinated and moving forward on the occupation. But I’ve got some ideas that I’m going to write about in the days ahead. I’ve also met several of the “anonymous” people who comment here, and around the blogosphere, as we come out of the woodwork and get face time. And I’ve met a wide array of people from the community who are just awesome, and want to get involved.

    • This is all great to hear and you know how very happy I am that you are all wrapped up in this. OccupyMissoula has had the very bes since inception from what I see.

      Hopefully I’ll see you there today.

  2. d.g.

    Global. Cosmic. Whatever. If it ain’t in Baucus’s back yard it’s all as moot as a hoot owl at noon.

    • Kirsten

      Not at all. This isn’t about Baucus. He’s not going to fix things for us. It’s about US learning to fix things FOR OURSELVES.

  3. Turner

    There’ll be an Occupy Butte demonstration today at noon at the Butte Plaza Mall. I haven’t attended any GA meetings (if the Butte people had them) so I’m not sure what the main messaging will be.

    I’m making a sign this morning. Maybe something like WALL STREET IS RUINING AMERICA. If anyone has a better idea for sign please let me know.

  4. It amazes me of how many losers there are. Very disappointing that these people are protesting and are demanding to be given other’s property without doing anything.

    As I’ve said before, I hope they keep it up and get more aggressive. Us real people far outnumber them and are getting very angry at watching the loser circuses of people whining about their situations. There will be a huge backlash.

  5. “You’re not really interested in knowing, so I won’t try to explain. It would be like tryng to explain a Rembrandt exhibit to a blind man.”

    I’d like to know.

    What is their goal ?

    Do they have an objective ?

    • lizard19

      as a participant of this event, but speaking just for myself, i would like to see some policy suggestions come out of this process.

      for example, there is obviously a need to re-regulate wall street, like reinstating glass-steagall and imposing some stricter capital requirements for banks. the risk-taking of the finance sector should never have become a systemic threat to the stability of the global economy.

      that hasn’t been fixed. the insane shell game goes on, and we can either wait for the next bubble to burst, or we can start taking direct action to let the masters of the universe know we’re not all cattle down here waiting passively for slaughter.

      • Steve W

        I’m happy to see things percolate for awhile. It takes time for people to get to know each other and it takes time to reach a general consensus on policy.

        But we need to keep talking about policy and we need to keep getting to know each other.

    • Steve W

      Yep, our objective is to get you to think and wonder about what could possibly be our objective. How are we doing?

      Oh, and today Saturday October 15th our objective is to do some art and poetry and music. You know, present it participate in it, enjoy it, that kind of thing.

      Do you like art and poetry and music Eric?

      I do.

    • My take on the Occupation in NYC is that right now it is about process more than results. It is about taking back public spaces; parks, streets, bridges… It is the right to freely assemble without permits. It is to speak freely and be listened to. It is to self-organize rather than be told where to go and what to do by so-called leaders. We have be helpless for a long time. The people in Liberty Park in lower Manhattan have shown that there is another way rather than through useless electoral politics to address our problems. There were other ways of living together centuries and eons ago. There are still other ways of living together in small villages all over the world.
      And yes, at the same time, the conversations are about identifying the problems before offer solutions. The powers that be want people to come up with the solutions so they can shoot them down or ignore them or say, “We hear you. We will fix it. Now go home.” Well, no we won’t sit down and STFU. And no, we aren’t going to repeat stupid phrases like “get government out of my life” or “tax the rich” without really examining what those phrases mean.

      Politics should be “having a conversation of the way we would like to live together.” OWS has started a profound conversation. Here is a great post from one of my favorite bloggers, Lambert Strether at His site has been filled with great reports and Yves Smith of the Naked Capitalism has picked it up and front paged it.

  6. Eric – I think one of the larger goals is to get money out of politics. Wall Street exerts a huge influence over the laws of the United States that “The 99%” are saying this results in unfair distribution of wealth.

    In other words – we’ve got an unfair tax policy influence by uncontrolled money in our political system.

    As I will add with this movement – anyone is free to correct or clarify what I say.

    Their objective is to make their voice known. In my opinion, they’ve pretty much succeeded.

  7. Chuck

    I’m not sure art raves and drum circles will advance the cause. You guys have a lot of smart people willing to help get this thing going in a direction that might have results.

    • From what I’ve gathered from the Occupation in New York is that the general assemblies decide what actions they will do which involve some marching, some teach-ins, and some sheer joy with the art and music. Most of the reports I’ve read have mentioned the “joy” and real freedom to be found in the best of the occupations.

  8. Pogo Possum

    “I’d like to know. What is their goal ? Do they have an objective ?”

    Here you go Eric…….direct from the Occupy Missoula Web site listed in no particular order of importance. It’s a pretty diverse list and a bit of a hodge podge– Wonder why the public is confused about lack of a unifying message.

    OccupyMissoula Declaration, Second Draft Posted

    We affirm the following statements:

    They have used the military and police force to prevent freedom of the press.

    They have profited off of the torture, confinement, and cruel treatment of countless animals, and actively hide these practices.

    They continue to block generic forms of medicine that could save peoples lives or provide relief in order to protect investments that have already turned a substantial profit.

    They have accepted private contracts to murder prisoners even when presented with serious doubts about their guilt.

    They have perpetuated colonialism at home and abroad.

    They have participated in the torture and murder of innocent civilians overseas.

    They continue to create weapons of mass destruction in order to receive government contracts.

    The multinational corporations of the wealthy (“they”) have taken the houses of working voters (“our”) through an illegal foreclosure process, despite not having the original mortgage.

    They have taken bailouts from taxpayers with impunity, and continue to give Executives exorbitant bonuses.

    They have perpetuated inequality and discrimination in the workplace based on age, the color of one’s skin, sex, gender identity and sexual orientation.

    They have poisoned the food supply through negligence, and undermined the farming system through monopolization.

    They have continuously sought to strip employees of the right to negotiate for better pay and safer working conditions.

    They have held students hostage with tens of thousands of dollars of debt on education, which is itself a human right.

    They have consistently outsourced labor and used that outsourcing as leverage to cut workers’ healthcare and pay.

    They have influenced the courts to achieve the same rights as people, with none of the culpability or responsibility.

    They have spent millions of dollars on legal teams that look for ways to get them out of contracts in regards to health insurance.

    They have sold our privacy as a commodity.

    They have deliberately declined to recall faulty products endangering lives in pursuit of profit.

    They determine economic policy, despite the catastrophic failures their policies have produced and continue to produce.

    They have donated large sums of money to politicians, who are responsible for regulating them.

    They continue to block alternate forms of energy to keep us dependent on oil.

    They have purposely covered up oil spills, accidents, faulty bookkeeping, and inactive ingredients in pursuit of profit.

    They purposefully keep people misinformed and fearful through their control of the media.

  9. Hi jhwygir!

    Love your article. I’m a reporter/booker for the Daily National. Can we get an interview with you about this article?

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