Posts tagged ‘Supreme Court’

The Big Losers Of 2013


The Big Losers Of 2013

biggest losers 2013

WASHINGTON — Some people are losers because they have failed in their endeavors; others are losers because they’ve suffered misfortune. Here are HuffPost’s favorite losers of the year, in no particular order.

James Clapper — The intel honcho oversaw one of the greatest losses of intelligence in U.S. history and was also caught lying to Congress. He still has his job somehow, but otherwise he likely wants to forget 2013.

james clapper

Grand Bargaineers — This year saw the death of the Grand Bargain and the rise of the Petite Bargain. Henceforth, Barack Obama and John Boehner will have to find some other way to cut Social Security. Maya MacGuinneas, the head of Fix the Debt, raised tens of millions of corporate dollars to pressure Washington into a grand bargain, but began the year on the losing end of the “fiscal” cliff deal and ended it completely marginalized, with everyone from all sides dismissing the group’s central aim. Biggest loser runner-up in the deficit scold category is Peter Peterson, the private equity billionaire who funded much of MacGuinneas’ failed effort.

debt(via Dave Weigel)Fix The Debt’s can that kicks back is on its way to the recycle bin of history.

Ted Cruz — The Texas GOP senator’s vaunted strategy to foil Obamacare shut down the government, but did not foil Obamacare.

ted cruz

Pine Trees — Warmer weather allowed the mountain pine beetle to continue to gorge itself on Western forests. It’s just one of the many plagues that climate change is visiting upon the globe.

Bigots — Gay people have been getting married left and right; the sky hasn’t fallen.

Pizza

Mmmhmm.

Voters — The Supreme Court struck down part of a landmark civil rights law that protected voting rights for minorities, with Chief Justice John Roberts arguing that racism is over. Southern states immediately began passing laws intended to block minorities from voting.

Judgmental Catholics — Pope Francis said an amazing thing: “If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?” Indeed.

Pizza

Workers — The year started with shrunken paychecks thanks to the expiration of a 2 percent Social Security payroll tax cut, which essentially wiped out wage gains for millions. Then, Black Friday canceled Thanksgiving.

Dan Snyder — His Washington, D.C., football team began the year with its star quarterback’s tragic knee injury in the playoffs. Then, everyone started talking about the team’s racist name again, and Snyder trotted out a fake chief. Then, the team lost most of its games in the new season, and the organization is closing the year in hopelessness and disarray.

rg

The Washington Department of Football’s season in a nutshell.

Gun Control Advocates — How many mass shootings does it take to get to the hearts of gun lobbyists? The world may never know.

The Long-Term Unemployed — Congress had already shortened the duration of unemployment benefits available to the long-term unemployed, but people like Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) still beat them up for receiving 99 weeks of aid. On Dec. 28, extra benefits will disappear altogether.

Rand Paul — Soso much plagiarism.

rand paul

People on Food Stamps — Republicans spent the summer claiming food stamp recipients are lazy surfers who use their benefits for sushi and lobster. Then in the fall, Democrats cut their assistance by $5 billion. Experts say it was the first-ever month-to-month drop in benefit amounts.

Third Way — Took on Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.). Whoops.

Women in North Dakota, Arkansas, Texas — These states passed harsh abortion restrictions as part of a lesser-known Obamacare backlash. Reproductive freedom advocates in Texas had state Sen. Wendy Davis to thank for her filibustering high point, though a few weeks later Texas passed its unconstitutional abortion bill anyway. But we’ll always have that night.

Anthony Weiner — For a minute there he was actually winning the New York mayor’s race, despite being a serial sext offender. Then he flipped the bird and conceded he is an empty, soulless vessel.

Detroit Civil Servants — Because Detroit’s public employees have it so good, thevampire squid is sucking blood from their pensions.

Trey Radel — Florida man busted for cocaine possession. This time he also happened to be a GOP congressman.

Undocumented Immigrants — They’re being detained and deported at record rates, the president’s way of showing he’s tough on enforcement so Republicans will join him in reforming the system. Instead, reform went nowhere in 2013. People just got the stick.

Barack Obama — The signature achievement of his first term has badly underperformed in a big year, and the president’s “you can keep it” promise proved false. Despite his best efforts to prosecute leakers, a leaker exposed the administration’s extremely vast and creepy and probably unconstitutional surveillance activities. And his approval ratings, those aren’t so hot right now.

barack obama

Kim Jong Un’s Uncle — If you were the uncle of a 30-year-old North Korean dictator, this was not your year.

Federal Workers — President Obama earlier implemented a pay freeze to show how tough he is on spending and then spent the next several years being dubbed a big spender. After that thankless sacrifice, federal workers were furloughed in 2013, and the latest budget deal asks them to give up some of their pensions so we can keep tax rates low. We can’t think of a better way to manage employee morale and attract and retain top-quality talent.

Marco Rubio — The rising Republican star and Florida senator abandoned what could have been his first big legislative achievement. We don’t understand the long game here — the man wants to be president and he’s slowly losing his hair! Americans haven’t elected a bald president since Dwight Eisenhower in the 1950s … and that guy had won World War II.

America — My God, what a year.

amerca

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Unhappy Anniversary: Republicans Have Blocked The American Jobs Act For One Year


Unhappy Anniversary: Republicans Have Blocked The American Jobs Act For One Year.

aldron on Sep 7, 2012 at 11:15 am

On September 8, 2011 — one year ago tomorrow — President Obama laid out a series of policy proposals known collectively as the American Jobs Act. The plan included stimulus spending in the form of immediate infrastructure investments, tax credits for working Americans and employers to encourage consumer spending and job growth, and efforts to shore up state and local budgets to prevent further layoffs of teachers, firefighters, police officers, and other public safety officials.

The American Jobs Act never became law, however, because Republicans opposed it from the start, blasting it as another form of “failed stimulus” that wouldn’t help the economy. (They ignored the fact that the first “failed stimulus,” the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, wasn’t a failure at all.) One month later, the GOP blocked the bill in the Senate, preventing the creation of more than a million jobs and the added growth that multiple economists predicted would occur if the bill passed:

–Moody’s Analytics estimated the American Jobs Act would create 1.9 million jobs and add two percent to gross domestic product.

–The Economic Policy Institute estimated it would create 2.6 million jobs and

Court Blocks Texas Voter ID Law, Citing Racial Impact – NYTimes.com


Court Blocks Texas Voter ID Law, Citing Racial Impact – NYTimes.com.

WASHINGTON — A federal court on Thursday struck down a Texas law that would have required voters to show government-issued photo identification before casting their ballots in November, ruling that the law would hurt turnout among minority voters and impose “strict, unforgiving burdens on the poor” by charging those voters who lack proper documentation fees to obtain election ID cards.
Enlarge This Image
Chris Kleponis/Bloomberg News

Greg Abbott, the Texas attorney general, outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C., in March.
Related

Federal Court Finds Texas Voting Maps Discriminatory (August 29, 2012)
Justice Dept. Blocks Texas on Photo ID for Voting (March 13, 2012)

Related in Opinion

Editorial: ‘Discriminatory Purpose’ in Texas (August 30, 2012)

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The three-judge panel in United States District Court for the District of Columbia called Texas’ voter-identification law the most stringent of its kind in the country. Gov. Rick Perry and the state’s attorney general, Greg Abbott, vowed to appeal the decision to the United States Supreme Court.

The judges’ ruling came two days after another three-judge panel in the same court found that the Texas Legislature had intentionally discriminated against minority voters in drawing up electoral district maps, citing the same section of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

Known as Senate Bill 14, the state’s voter-identification law requires voters who show up at the polls to identify themselves with one of five forms of ID, including a driver’s license or a United States passport. Those lacking one of the five types of identification must obtain an election identification certificate, a government-issued card similar to a driver’s license. Prospective voters would need to travel to a state Department of Public Safety office to get an election ID card, and, although it is free, they would have to verify their identity to obtain one, in some cases paying $22 for a certified copy of their birth certificate.

In its unanimous 56-page ruling, the federal judges found that the fees and the cost of traveling for those voters lacking one of the five forms of ID disproportionately affected the poor and minorities. “Moreover, while a 200- to 250-mile trip to and from a D.P.S. office would be a heavy burden for any prospective voter, such a journey would be especially daunting for the working poor,” the decision read, referring to the dozens of counties in Texas that do not have a D.P.S. office.

Mr. Perry and other Texas Republicans had argued that voter identification laws were constitutional methods of preventing voter fraud, and they believed the courts could not legally consider factors like poverty when determining whether a law complies with the Voting Rights Act.

Mr. Perry criticized the judges and the Obama administration. “Chalk up another victory for fraud,” he said in a statement. “Today, federal judges subverted the will of the people of Texas and undermined our effort to ensure fair and accurate elections.”

The United States attorney general, Eric H. Holder Jr., who had told the N.A.A.C.P. in July that the Texas law’s requirements amounted to a poll tax, praised the ruling. “The court’s decision today and the decision earlier this week on the Texas redistricting plans not only reaffirm — but help protect — the vital role the Voting Rights Act plays in our society to ensure that every American has the right to vote and to have that vote counted,” he said in a statement.

The wave of voter ID laws enacted by Republican-led state governments in recent years has created a polarizing debate.

Supporters, mostly conservatives, argue that such restrictions are needed to prevent fraud. While there is no evidence of significant levels of voter impersonation — the sort of fraud that would be addressed by ID requirements — they argue that it is just going undetected. But critics, mostly liberals, say voter impersonation fraud is rare and contend that the restrictions are a veiled effort to suppress turnout by legitimate voters who are less likely to have a photo ID card and who tend to support Democrats, like students, the indigent and minorities.

Mr. Perry signed the voter identification bill in May, but it had not taken effect because Texas and other states with a history of racial discrimination cannot make changes to their voting procedures without first receiving so-called preclearance, a requirement under Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act.

The case could add to pressure on the question of whether Section 5 of the act is still constitutional. The Supreme Court, which is already hearing an affirmative action case in its coming term, is deciding whether to review an appeals court decision upholding the Voting Rights Act in the face of a constitutional challenge by Alabama. Texas is also challenging the constitutionality of the law in the voter ID case, one of a handful of states to do so recently, including Florida and Alaska.

US Supreme Court Becoming More Powerful – Business Insider


US Supreme Court Becoming More Powerful – Business Insider.

Congress technically has the power to undo Supreme Court decisions it doesn’t like.

But these days, partisan divisions have interfered with Congress’ functioning so much that the nations’ justices often have the last word, The New York Times’ Adam Liptak reports.

The Times cited this recent study by University of California, Riverside professor Richard Hasan, which found the number of so-called Congressional overrides of Supreme Court decisions have diminished significantly in the past decade.

“[P]artisanship seems to have strongly diminished the opportunities for bipartisan overridings of Supreme Court cases, in which Democrats and Republicans come together to reverse the Supreme Court,” the study found.

Justice Antonin Scalia made a reference to the high court’s new power during the game-changing arguments over the president’s signature health care overhaul, Liptak reported.

While discussing whether the high court should strike down the insurance mandate and let Congress decide on the balance of the law, Scalia said “you’re not going to get 60 votes in the Senate to repeal the rest.”
DON’T MISS: In America’s ‘Endless War,’ No Justices Are Prepared >
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How to Sweep Dark Money Out of Politics | Mother Jones


 

Justice John Paul Stevens had seen a lot of precedent overturned by the time the Supreme Court ruled on Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission in January 2010. Appointed to the court by Gerald Ford after a career as a distinguished Republican jurist, he’d been there for contentious cases on abortion, the death penalty, Gitmo, you name it. But none had prepared him for the way the court’s new conservative majority, led by John Roberts, seized on an obscure campaign finance case expected to produce a narrow ruling and used it to shred nearly four decades of federal law.

The majority opinion in Citizens United takes up 57 pages, but it’s pretty efficiently boiled down as follows: (1) Money is speech; (2) corporations are people; (3) therefore, under the First Amendment, the government can’t stop corporations from spending money on politics pretty much however they choose.

Stevens penned an impassioned 90-page dissent lambasting the "glittering generality" of this construction. "Although they make enormous contributions to our society, corporations are not actually members of it," he wrote. "Our lawmakers have a compelling constitutional basis, if not also a democratic duty, to take measures designed to guard against the potentially deleterious effects of corporate spending in local and national races."

Stevens wasn’t the only one appalled. Citizens United set off a torrent of outrage, culminating in the high drama of the president (a constitutional law professor, lest we forget) condemning the court in the State of the Union for opening "the floodgates for special interests—including foreign corporations—to spend without limit in our elections." Anger spanned the political spectrum (80 percent were opposed shortly after the ruling, 65 percent "strongly") and helped spark the Occupy movement.

The right "recognizes something that few on the left recognize: that campaign finance law underlies all other substantive law."

But Americans’ disgust didn’t stop the bagmen, on both sides of the aisle, from seizing the opportunity. Just ask Dan Maffei, a Democrat in upstate New York’s 25th District who led Ann Marie Buerkle, a pro-life activist with scant political experience, by 12 points two weeks before the election. Then Karl Rove’s American Crossroads buried him with $400,000 worth of attack ads—and Buerkle won by a mere 648 votes.

So how to put elections back in the hands of voters? Here are the four options:

Constitutional amendment: Okay, it takes two-thirds majorities in both houses of Congress and ratification by three-fourths of the state legislatures. Nevertheless, we did just that to bring about Prohibition in 1919 and then to overturn it in 1933, and to lower the voting age to 18 in 1971. That last one wrapped in a mere five months; then again, the 27th Amendment, which regulated congressional raises, was in the works for 203 years. And recall the Equal Rights Amendment: "Men and women shall have equal rights throughout the United States." No-brainer, right? The ERA passed Congress in a landslide in ’72 (354 to 24 in the House, 84 to 8 in the Senate). It was endorsed by Richard Nixon, included in the Republican Party platform, and ratified by 30 state legislatures within another year. And then Phyllis "Stop Unisex Bathrooms!" Schlafly whipped up a major froth, got enough culture war firebrands elected to state legislatures, and stopped it cold.

So yes, it’s technically possible to pass an amendment clarifying that corporations are not quite the same as people and money is not quite the same as speech. (Several organizations, including People for the American Way and a new outfit called Move to Amend, are pushing for this.) But there’s also a lot of dark-money groups waiting to underwrite a Schlafly-like play.

SCOTUS deathwatch: How about waiting for a conservative justice or two to die while Democrats hold the White House and the Senate? Yeeaah. Absent the plot devices of a John Grisham thriller, don’t hold your breath. Then again, know who’s been the master of this kind of waiting game? The folks who brought you Citizens United. When he started flooding the docket with anti-campaign-finance-regulation cases in the 1980s, conservative lawyer James Bopp Jr. was facing a hostile court. But he kept at it until the majority shifted—and slammed the ball he’d teed up.

Let the sun shine in: In the nearer term, there’s the option the Roberts court expressly invited in Citizens United—full-monty disclosure. Not long after the ruling, Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) introduced the DISCLOSE Act with 114 cosponsors, just two of them Republicans. It would have banned most secret donations, forced companies to report their giving to shareholders, and shut foreign corporations out of electioneering. The bill’s life was brief and full of ironies (among the clauses tacked on in the House was one exempting the NRA); it passed the House in an anemic 219-206 vote—36 Dems voted nay—and died, as all good legislation must, when the Senate fell one vote short (RIP Ted Kennedy) of a filibuster-proof 60 votes. Van Hollen has reintroduced the legislation, and with Sen. John McCain back in the reform business, it might just stand a chance.

But Congress is not the only game in town. Court after court has come down squarely on the side of disclosure, and in May, the DC court of appeals ruled that nonprofits like Rove’s Crossroads GPS and the US Chamber of Commerce must reveal their donors’ names. In another promising step, the IRS has made noises about revoking the tax exemption of dark-money groups.

Taxpayer-financed campaigns: No one likes big money in politics—least of all, perhaps, members of Congress who toil in the Hill’s drab call centers, dialing donors to beg for cash. That’s why public financing was key to the post-Watergate reforms, and until billionaire Steve Forbes opted out in 1996, every major presidential candidate took it. But the system failed to keep up with the cost of elections; this year, candidates could hope to get about $90 million in public financing, whereas Obama expects to raise up to $1 billion. Nevertheless, public financing can still make a big difference in down-ballot races, from the statehouse all the way to obscure but critical judicial elections. And keep in mind, today’s state legislator is tomorrow’s US senator.

As the rich get richer, throwing six-figure sums at presidential campaigns is just like tipping for good service.

In the end, all these avenues need to be pursued, and here’s why: As Paul S. Ryan of the Campaign Legal Center told MoJo‘s Andy Kroll, the right "recognizes something that few on the left recognize: that campaign finance law underlies all other substantive law." In other words, no matter what you care about—climate change, abortion, taxes, net neutrality—it all comes back to who pays for our elections. Need a more selfish reason? Because the 1 percent have bent the system to their advantage, America’s median household income—your income—is $40,000 lower than it would have been had incomes continued to keep pace with economic growth. Conversely, as the rich get richer, throwing six-figure sums at presidential campaigns is just like tipping for good service. Snake, meet tail.

So yes, we might agree with Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), no stranger to campaign rainmaking, that Citizens United is the court’s worst decision since it upheld segregation in Plessy v. Ferguson. But bad law is not without redress—if voters shame reluctant representatives into getting off the dark-money teat. "At bottom," wrote Justice Stevens, the court’s opinion is "a rejection of the common sense of the American people, who have recognized a need to prevent corporations from undermining self-government since the founding…While American democracy is imperfect, few outside the majority of this Court would have thought its flaws included a dearth of corporate money in politics."

Ready to explore for yourself? Here’s choose-your-own adventure guide to the options, with plenty of links to more resources.

<p>Sadly, in order to play, you must have javascript enabled.</p>

61

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  • Jacqueline D. Reyes06/17/2012 09:28 AM

    This comment was flagged for review.

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  • RudyTwoShoes06/17/2012 09:55 AMin reply to Jacqueline D. Reyes

    This is a scam/spam link and has been flagged.

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  • RudyTwoShoes06/17/2012 09:58 AM

    "Corporations are people and money is speech" yet corporations can commit fraud, slander and treason without prosecution.  We the People need the same freedom and access (and most certainly the same level of freedom from taxation, the ability to purchase a Toyota directly from Japan without import tax and the ability to purchase drugs, food and anything from Canada or anyplace we want).

    Free trade and free "speech" for everyone.

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  • Ronnie Waters06/17/2012 06:37 PMin reply to RudyTwoShoes

    This is the only intelligent point made here.  Thanks Rudy

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  • Won WordYesterday 05:23 AMin reply to RudyTwoShoes

    One upon a time, corporations received the death penalty for egregious acts. 200 years ago, corporate charters could be–and were–revoked by the state. When was the last time that happened?

    Two+ perfect candidates: BP for their flagrant disregard for personnel and environmental safety, and JP Morgan/Bank of America/Wells Fargo for their engineered destruction of the economy.

    Revoke their charters, see off their assets to pay for cleaning their messes, and prosecute their officers. Done and done.

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  • melinda_jobsYesterday 10:56 AMin reply to RudyTwoShoes

    corporation are about "protection their bottom line" with all causes or by any mean.   

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  • slave2libertyYesterday 12:08 PMin reply to melinda_jobs

    And you’re not about protecting your bottom line?

    "all causes or by any  mean" – wow, that’s amazing – i didn’t realize that all corporations and all people whom they consist of use any and all means necessary to protect what is rightfully theirs (money or right to associate).

    If this is true, then why am i not tripping on dead bodies in the streets daily, or receiving a visit from Guido of ABC Corporation, and being told i have to buy their products, or else? Seems like, you demagogue just a little.

    Ironically, i have been visited on occasion from Guido of the State apparatus, telling me how much soda i can drink, how much salt i can put on my steak, what type of bicycle helmet to wear, and how much of my own money is rigthfully some else’s who makes less than me, or that i must pay for programs which encourage ILLEGAL immigration (or straight out amnesty), so that Democrats can increase their voter rolls.

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  • slave2libertyYesterday 11:54 AMin reply to RudyTwoShoes

    So, is it really as simple as lefists make it out – that corporations deserve no protections which are afforded to the individuals whom they consist of?

    Should a corporation not be afforded protections against illegal search and seizure? Or taxation without representation? Or freedom of political speech?

    On the flip-side – if corporations (a collection of individuals) are  not to be held to the same laws as the individuals, what laws are they accountable to? In other words – what legal parameters are their actions judged against?

    Me thinks, that the ONLY reason leftists get their panties in a bunch on this issue, is because they don’t like the resulting effectiveness that occurs by having many people pooling their resources to speak out against the left’s beloved statists.

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  • Phoenix WomanYesterday 01:24 PMin reply to slave2liberty

    "Many people"?  Nah, just a handful of very rich people who have used the brainwashing techniques of Fred Bernays, coupled with skillful and amoral "Southern Strategy" manipulation of race hatreds cloaked in the mantle of deficit hawkery ( http://my.firedoglake.com/phoe….

    In the meantime, the left is outgunned and outfinanced by these new high-tech feudal overlords whose butts you love kissing for the tiny crumbs they give you.

    Why not skip the parasitical overlords and go for economic democracy instead? You know, where the people who do the work — not commissars, not boards of directors, not third-generation trustafarians whose cosseted lives are so different from ours that they think Ayn Rand’s flatterings of them as the master race are sober truth — actually get the proceeds therefrom.

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  • FromtheGreatWhiteNorth06/17/2012 10:57 AM

    The cynicism embodied by Citizens United defies belief. The notion that corporations are citizens is so offensive. Once again, we privitize profits (bought politicians) and social risk (prosecution for illegal actives = fine. Just add it to the price). We might be able to have a conversation about things when a ‘corporation’ is jailed for malfeasance (e.g., suspended from doing ANY business for the length of the sentence). Those of us older feel helpless. Those of us younger feel nothing – they’re excluded forever.

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  • talktoo06/17/2012 04:12 PMin reply to FromtheGreatWhiteNorth

    ..or buried in Arlington

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  • Won WordYesterday 05:28 AMin reply to talktoo

    As a former servicemember, I council young people to avoid military service like the plague. Patton had it right: let "the other poor dumb bastard die for his country."

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  • Steven DeeringYesterday 07:05 AMin reply to FromtheGreatWhiteNorth

    I couldn’t agree more.

    Lately, I seem to be getting into more arguments with friends/family/coworkers about immigrants and minorities being the problem ("They get free health care, food stamps!") as if they have any political clout. Meanwhile, corporations are handed subsidies after posting historic revenues. Why? Because, job creators. Or something. It is really confusing… But then I look at Florida and see a voter purge to combat nonexistent fraud and it becomes slightly clearer.

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  • slave2libertyYesterday 12:39 PMin reply to Steven Deering

    Those are some great ethics you live by – if they don’t have political "clout", then just let them do as they want, taking resources from LEGAL citizens, making the rule of law arbitrary, ignoring US sovereignty, and giving politicians fiat power to ignore immigration policy.

    Regardless of your accomodations and lack of principle, the truth is, ILLEGAL aliens have plenty of political clout which is aimed at undermining US Sovereignty. You never heard of MALDEF, The Congressional Hispanic Caucus, The National Council of La Raza (THE race!), or MECHA?

    As for the specious attacks on Florida and every municpality for attempting to ensure the integrity of our election system, it seems that you would prefer to look the other way as long as those illegal votes sway in your favor.

    Do you honestly believe that there should be no auditing or oversight of the voter records? That people should be able to vote in multiple districts (as is sometimes the case with college students, by accident), or that widowers should be able to mail in their deceased partner’s ballot? Or that ILLEGAL aliens should be able to vote?

    Besides, if there is no fraud (or…

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  • Phoenix WomanYesterday 01:31 PMin reply to slave2liberty

    If "illegal aliens" had clout, they wouldn’t be working starvation wages. 

    Which is of course why, contrary to your protestations, Republicans love the current situation:  You use undocumented workers as a club with which to force documented workers to accept starvation wages, too.

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  • dustime806/17/2012 12:45 PM

    The (misnomer) dark money makes me almost laugh at those who chose the word to cover the correct term "corruption" in the money used by corporate America they launder into political donations. I guess this falls under the term political correctness which is another corruption to cover up unfettered mis-use of power by elected officials voted into office. We are allowing our country to be pilfered and destroyed by powers within and think nothing of it. People seem more interested in their next stash of marijuana or legalization of this crap than the direction America is headed. What do you think? Mother Jones, am I wrong here?

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  • Won WordYesterday 05:31 AMin reply to dustime8

    People seem more interested in their next stash of marijuana or legalization of this crap whatever entertainment garbage is on TeeVee than the direction America is headed.

    Fixed it for you.

    show more show less

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    Steven Deering and 2 more liked thisLikeReplyReply

  • Steven DeeringYesterday 07:07 AMin reply to dustime8

    I think Orwell would have really enjoyed the pizza = vegetable idea.

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  • Marc Grober06/17/2012 01:37 PM

    No mention of Montana’s perspective?  For shame…..

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  • William06/17/2012 01:59 PM

    Speaking as a 10th and 12th generation Yankee gun-owner, and 6th generation college grad who was born a Republican, I think it will take a class war to return our legislative system to some semblance of moral equity.  Our Supreme Court is dominated by people who simply don’t have any skin in our national game, except to make themselves and their cronies rich and powerful.  We need term limits on Supreme Court seats, perhaps 14 years, so that no president could appoint more than one, under normal circumstances, and we need a list of qualifying prerequisites, including having at least either a graduate degree not only in law, but also in American History with several juried publications, and service in uniform in combat whenever other Americans are deployed in combat, otherwise demanding public service in uniform at low pay for at least 4 years.  Scalia is a cowbird whose loyalties are to wealth and the Vatican, and Alito is right in there with him.  Thomas’s qualifications are so minimal they could be stenciled on the head of a pin, and Roberts is most qualified to be a billionaire’s chauffeur.

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  • B E Pratt06/17/2012 08:30 PMin reply to William

    While term limits is an intriguing idea, the whole idea behind appointment for life was to keep politics out of the Supreme Court. It worked very well up until recently. It used to be that when a Justice was appointed, one never really knew what they would do until some decisions came down. You could guess fairly well, but you could never be sure.

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  • Won WordYesterday 05:37 AMin reply to William

    How about setting congressional, presidential and SCOTUS salaries to minimum wage, with no benefits, such as healthcare and pensions, just like the majority of Americans? Any raise they vote themselves must be matched by an equivallent dollar increase in minimum wage.

    Yeah, I know. Happy fantasy.

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  • DebbieSmith195606/17/2012 03:58 PM

    American election laws set very specific limits to the size of donations that individuals and Political Action Committees may make to Presidential campaigns. Unfortunately, as shown here, it is very difficult to track the trail of a donation as funds are moved from one PAC to another to ensure that the limits are being followed:

    http://viableopposition.blogsp…

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  • tiredoftea06/17/2012 04:15 PM

    Another victory for the right, activist judges, of the right temperament, at the SCOTUS level. Wake up Dems! You have lost most of the battles and the war. Will your convictions and backbone ever show up?

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  • Won WordYesterday 05:38 AMin reply to tiredoftea

    Dems have no spine, and Repubs have no heart.

    Such is the way of the world.

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  • DTaggert06/17/2012 04:36 PM

    I’m still wondering what makes the 1st amendment so difficult to understand:

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech…”

    No law, means exactly nothing. Congress can’t do anything at all regulating what we talk about or how we choose to say. We can talk individually, anonymously, using any media, including those not known at the time.

    We can choose to talk as a member of a group – a neighborhood association, a professional organization, as a Tea Partier, as a stockholder in a corporation.

    Even the states have a very limited ability to control speech due to the incorporation doctrine that started with the 14th amendment.

    This freedom of speech allowed the Tea Party movement to spring up spontaneously and conclusively stop the slide of this country toward collectivism, so now, free speech is being viscously attacked

    Citizens United merely affirmed the first amendment. The Supreme Court ruled that “Congress shall make no law” meant exactly what it says. It doesn’t matter if you speak anonymousl­y, it doesn’t matter if you choose to speak as a member of…

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  • middleclassman106/17/2012 05:28 PMin reply to DTaggert

    the tea party did not spring up spontaniously, it was created by the likes of the koch brothers who deceived some gullible citizens that their lives would somehow be better by taking our country back for the rich and greedy.

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  • mcsandbergYesterday 04:17 AMin reply to middleclassman1

    I have personal experience with the Tea Party. I was at the very first one that we had in Denver and I can assure you – the Tea Party movement is real, and it happened long before we got any professional help! You had to be there to appreciate the incredible enthusiasm and determination to get this country back on track. Check out http://www.lloydmarcus.com/ to see just how genuine the Tea Party is!

    The Tea Party is the result of lots of people reading the classics of liberty – Atlas Shrugged, The Road to Serfdom and others are always among Amazon.com best sellers. The people I meet at the Tea Parties are far from ignorant. Some have even read Von Mises "Human Action"!

    You can ONLY pick up 63 house seats, 6 house seats and most incredibly 695 state house seats with a true grass roots movement.

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  • Won WordYesterday 05:41 AMin reply to mcsandberg

    Ayn Rand’s work is as much a "classic of liberty" as "Grapes of Wrath" is about the benefits of unregulated Agriculture, "The Jungle" is about the benefits of unregulated meat packing, and "Uncle Tom’s Cabin" a classic of liberty of plantation owners.

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  • mcsandbergYesterday 06:04 AMin reply to Won Word

    Atlas Shrugged is a description of a country moving from liberty to collectivism. The reason its so compelling, is that its based on what Ms. Rand observed as Russia turned into the USSR. So, its very much a classic of liberty. Its the novel that introduces people to the library of liberty. Most of the Tea Partiers I’ve talked to mention it as the book that explained what’s happening to this country.

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How to Sweep Dark Money Out of Politics | Mother Jones

Shut Down Corporations


#F29 Shut Down the Corporations

January 7th, 2012 · Ella · Announcements
24 comments

National Call to Action Made by the Portland General Assembly – January 1st, 2012

Occupy Portland calls for a national day of non-violent direct action to reclaim our voices and challenge our society‘s obsession with profit and greed by shutting down the corporations.  We are rejecting a society that does not allow us control of our future. We will reclaim our ability to shape our world in a democratic, cooperative, just and sustainable direction.

We call on the Occupy Movement and everyone seeking freedom and justice to join us in this day of action.

There has been a theft by the 1% of our democratic ability to shape and form the society in which we live and our society is steered toward the destructive pursuit of consumption, profit and greed at the expense of all else.

We call on people to target corporations that are part of the American Legislative Exchange Council which is a prime example of the way corporations buy off legislators and craft legislation that serves the interests of corporations and not people. They used it to create the anti-labor legislation in Wisconsin and the racist bill SB 1070 in Arizona among so many others. They use ALEC to spread these corporate laws around the country.

In doing this we begin to recreate our democracy. In doing this we begin to create a society that is organized to meet human needs and sustain life.

On February 29th, we will reclaim our future from the 1%. We will shut down the corporations and recreate our democracy.

Join us! Leap into action! Reclaim our future!  Shut down the corporations!

*This call to action was issued by the Portland General Assembly on January 1st, 2012 with unanimous support.

National Website – www.shutdownthecorporations.org

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/F29-Shut-Down-the-Corporations/169049533194891?sk=wall

Facebook Event: http://www.facebook.com/events/261864810546909

Twitter: #f29 @f29action

Stand Up Against Attacks on Our Civil Liberties

December 15th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements
21 comments

The LA General Assembly became an early voice in the Occupy Movement against the indefinite military detention provisions in the The National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 (NDAA). They passed and released a public statement against the NDAA and held actions in opposition of the provisions in the following days.

Civil rights groups, counterterrorism experts and former military leaders have expressed serious concerns with sections of the NDAA which would effectively allow for the indefinite military detention of United States citizens and lawful immigrants in America (see 1031 & 1032 of  HR 1540). A group of Lawmakers submitted a letter to House and Senate leaders stating their concerns of the possibility of these provisions undermining the rights of US citizens.

While adjustments have been made in backdoor meetings after President Obama’s threat of veto, none of these primary concerns were directly addressed. The NDAA in its present form could still allow for an indefinite military detention of a US citizen on American soil without trial. Despite these egregious attacks on our civil liberties, the NDAA will likely be passed in the Senate and signed into law today.

Coincidentally, today also marks Bill of Rights Day.

So thousands are refusing to idly stand by and will take to the streets to defend the Bill of Rights for all of us. Occupy Wall Street is joining several national coalitions to voice opposition of the NDAA and other recent attacks on our civil liberties. Boston will march against indefinite detention and Bill of Rights Day Rallies Against the NDAA are planned in Los Angeles, SacramentoHoustonIthaca, Flagstaff, York and Hartford in addition to more actions around the country.

If this is something you feel strongly about, do something in your community to raise awareness. Explain why this is something that concerns you. Discuss this with your friends, your family and your neighbors. Express your concerns to those who are supposed to represent you.

Together, we will be heard.

For more information on national actions, go to: bordc.org

#10D International Day of Action for #GlobalChange

December 8th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements
14 comments

Global civil society is being threatened by a system based on power and not on human values. Day after day it represses basic freedoms and consistently favors the greed of the few over the needs of the many. This power finances wars, food and pharmaceutical monopolies, it sponsors dictatorial regimes across the globe, destroying environments, manipulating and censoring information flow and transparency.

This Saturday, December 10, people all around the world will stand up together to demand the rights we were promised in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, signed and approved by most of the world’s governments and the basis for many of our constitutions.

The struggle for our rights as human beings underlies everything we have demanded in every square and every demonstration in this historic year of global change. From East to West, North to South: on the 10th of December we will take to the streets and squares together to demand the fundamental principles that were promised and are inherent to Human Beings.

Visit 10december.net for more information on the global movement. Search for or submit a report for #10D actions in your area.

ACTIONS FROM AROUND THE WORLD 

Occupy Brazil is holding Rally & March of Candles. Details on this Facebook event.

Occupy Tuscaloosa is holding a march for human rights on the national Day of Action for the Occupy movement and the anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Occupy London‘s lunchtime GA will provide space for London lovers, neighbours and visitors to discuss plans for occupations, teach outs and other actions specific to the local areas of London. More info here.
Also, live streaming of protests and show of cross-culture solidarity at the St. Paul Cathedral with guest speaker Professor Charles Tripp. Info here.

Madrid TomaLaPlaza is holding a week of action that starts on the 10th of December (International Human Rights Day) and culminates on the 18th of December (the global action day against racism and for the rights of migrants, refugees and displaced people) including performances, a Forum of Human Rights at Puerta del Sol, music show with various choirs, etc. Find more details here.

Occupy Montreal
After their eviction and the disrespect of their rights, Occupy Montreal will march to and occupy the SPVM HQ (Montreal Police Head Quarters) on this day of human rights and liberty. Complete schedule of events found here.

Occupy Nanamio will be taking part in Amnesty International’s Write for Rights campaign.

Occupy Nashville has planned a Global Human Rights Day March

Occupy Omaha will be holding a symbolic cross-town march uniting traditionally segregated areas of the city. Demonstrators will start from North Omaha and South Omaha and converge at the encampment.

Occupons La Defense (Paris)
As part of the global day of mobilization for the 63rd anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the indignation of Paris are calling for a mobilization.

Occupy Sydney is holding a Global Human Rights Day Festival with info stalls, Free School, music, food and more!

Find more actions here.

National Day of Action to Occupy Our Homes

December 4th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements
31 comments – Tags: actions, foreclosures, mass action, occupy movement, occupy our homes, occupy wall st

Banks took such high risks that they placed our entire economy in serious jeopardy. In return, they received trillions of dollars from the Fed and billions of dollars from hard working tax payers to get back on their feet. Homeowners take risks when buying homes; however, when they lose their jobs or are unable to afford their medical attention they don’t get bailouts, they lose everything.

With our current environment of corporate irresponsibility and greed, political impotence and corruption, all it takes is for you to lose your job or get dropped from your health insurance to lose it all. Just because it hasn’t happened to you, your loved ones or your neighbors yet, doesn’t mean the threat isn’t real.

This Tuesday, thousands will be standing up for their neighbors in a struggle against a system that places financial gain above the human need of shelter. Banks would rather let houses deteriorate than renegotiate loans with those who make them homes and build our communities.

Occupy Minnesota had taken this issue head-on shortly after their formation when a fellow Occupier called out for help in keeping her home.

This Tuesday, Occupy Minnesota will organize in neighborhoods to defend families facing foreclosures in the communities most affected by the financial crisis. They’ll expand their occupation to a second foreclosed home in South Minneapolis.

NATIONAL HAPPENINGS

Occupy Our Homes is launching off with the National Day of Action to Occupy Our Homes

Continue reading »

Embrace Community Not Consumption on #BuyNothingDay

November 23rd, 2011 · Ella · Announcements
31 comments


As retailers compete to see who can open their doors the earliest without offending the sensibilities of the public, Americans have been questioning the very tradition of over-consumption. Occupy Black Friday, OccupyXMass and Buy Nothing Day actions are being held throughout the country and world as a way to stand up against blatant corporate greed.

If you are opting-out this year, we’ve whipped up this little gift exemption card for you to print out give to your friends and family over Thanksgiving right before the chaos of corporate holiday spending ensues. Or, send this image as an eCard for those you won’t be spending the day with.

NATIONAL HAPPENINGS

#BuyNothingDay
Historically, Buy Nothing Day has been about fasting from hyper consumerism – a break from the cash register and reflecting on how dependent we really are on conspicuous consumption. This 20th anniversary of Buy Nothing Day will be married with the message of #Occupy. Occupy the minds of Xmas shoppers with these posters. Organize a whirly mart, santa sit-in or Jesus walk.

Continue reading »

Call for an Alternative Day of Action on Human Rights Day Saturday, December 10th, 2011

November 19th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements
53 comments

The  success of October 15th has triggered an unprecedented momentum for  global action. Humanity has united across boundaries in a struggle for real democracy and individual rights. Essential to this struggle is the respect for human life and living conditions, including environments

Global civil society is being threatened by a system based on power and not on human values. Day after day it represses basic freedoms and consistently favors the greed of the few over the needs of the many. This power finances wars, food and pharmaceutical monopolies, it sponsors dictatorial regimes across the globe, destroying environments, manipulating and censoring information flow and transparency.

Despite our different cultural backgrounds and social contexts, we all suffer the same threats. Our freedom and dignity are under attack as a result of market dynamics and corrupt government institutions that are turning our local and global societies into increasingly unjust places. The governments of this planet must work for the people, not against them. The time has come to stand up for our rights together and to demand the rights we were promised  in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, signed and approved by most of the world’s governments and the basis for many of our constitutions.

The struggle for our rights as human beings underlies everything we have demanded in every square and every demonstration in this historic year of global change. There is no better culmination to this year of protest than a global day of action to defend our inalienable human equity from those trying to take it away from us. From East to West, North to South: on the 10th of December we will take to the streets and squares together to demand the fundamental principles that were promised and are inherent to the Human Beings.

We would like to propose the week starting on the 10th of December (10/12 – 17/12) as a time for alternative forms of protest which will be found after a debate between all of us. The idea is to participate in proposing new forms of action with a creative spirit: we can organize public forums and workshops, flash-mobs, we can promote the movement in local schools and neighborhoods or get in contact with humanitarian organizations working with the same goals. 

VISIT 10DECEMBER.NET FOR MORE INFO

ADD YOUR PROPOSALS FOR AN ALTERNATIVE ACTION OR VIEW AND COMMENT ON IDEAS HERE

#N17 Mass Day of Action

November 16th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements
168 comments

OWS is calling upon you to participate in a national day of direct action on November 17 in celebration of the the two month anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Occupy Wall St
7:00 Shut Down Wall Street
3:00 Occupy the Subways
5:00 Take the Square

This information and more at: occupywallst.org/action/november-17th

Occupy Colleges
Students across the country will gather together on November 17 to protest the rising costs of college education, and the diminishing quality in that education from universities. Students will strike by gathering in central locations throughout each school, or in solidarity at Occupy Wall Street.

More information at: occupycolleges.org

Portland
Occupying steelbridge in morning
Rally afterwards
Subsequently occupying banks

www.n17pdx.org
https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=104127476368742

Los Angeles
1,000+ people to take over the street of Downtown, Los Angeles. Activists will meet at Bank of America Plaza at 333 S Hope St. and march to the corner of Figueroa and 4th St., where we will shut down the intersection.

www.occupylosangeles.org/?q=node%2F1970

Boston
Mass Uniting’s Jobs Not Cuts March & Rally at Dewey Square

https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=185521434866267

Prior to March @ FSU: Martin Luther King Jr, Stokely Carmichael, American Democracy, and the Search for Economic Justice: From the Civil Rights Movement to the Occupy Movement

Minneapolis
3:00pm Student Rally @ Northrop Plaza
4:00pm March onto the 10th Ave Bridge
5:30pm Rally on the Peoples’ Plaza (Government Plaza)

https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=189395914476438

Lexington
5:30 Solidarity March

http://t.co/5AZrXKdV

Chicago

5:30 Mass Action at Jackson and LaSalle

occupychi.org/2011/11/15/thursday-occupy-chicago-participates-national-day-action-november-17

INTERNATIONAL
Spain
A general strike of university students will be taking place in the following cities: Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, Tarragona, Palma, Sevilla, Santiago de Compostela, Murcia, Madrid, Valencia, Castello, Alicante, Zaragoza

17:00: Demonstration in Madrid

Place: From Nuevos Ministerios to Puerta del Sol Square
Call: Assembly UAM-CSIC / 15M

tomalafacultad.net
madrid.tomalaplaza.net/2011/11/08/17n-manifestacion-estatal-por-los-servicios-publicos

Belgium
Activists are mobilising for sit-ins at universities and schools to discuss the ongoing protests around the world, resist the increasing commercialisation of education and connect to the struggle on the global level.

ism-global.net/ghent_occupy_nov17

Germany
Massive student strikes, flash mobs, rallies, and other actions will be taking place in dozens of cities

ism-global.net/germany_education_strike_nov17

Letter from Movement Building

November 15th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements
29 comments – Tags: eviction, help, Occupy Wall Street

Friends,

Liberty Plaza (Zuccotti Park), home of Occupy Wall Street for the past two months and birthplace of the 99% movement that has spread across the country and around the world, was evicted by a large police force in full riot gear.

Three ways to get involved and help:

—————————————————-
Come out in person today at 9am EST
—————————————————-
We are re-gathering today at 9am EST at Canal and 6th Ave. This movement can’t be contained in one square block in lower Manhattan. It is bigger than that. You can’t evict an idea whose time had come. Show your support. Turn out en masse.

—————————————————-
Join a Call to discuss Direct Action at noon EST
—————————————————-
We also have a Direct Action call planned today at noon. This was already scheduled via InterOccupy.org, but we’d like to suggest that the call be used to directly discuss what can be done in response to today’s eviction. Please spread the word to Direct Action folks in your occupation that this call is happening!

To register for the call, go here:

http://interoccupy.org/

—————————————————-
Call assistant Attorney General with the Civil Rights Division
—————————————————-
Attached to this email is a complaint submitted on behalf of the Occupy Movement to the Department of Justice in response to the increasing antagonism of police against peaceful protesters. It was formally submitted to the Department of Justice on 11/10/2011. It is addressed to a Mister Thomas Perez, the assistant Attorney General with the Civil Rights Division. Mr. Perez’s office number is (202) 514-4609. Let us call, tied up his lines, and demand that every citizen has a right to peaceably assemble without the threat of police violence. Forward widely.

PLEASE FORWARD THIS EMAIL IMMEDIATELY AS FAR AND WIDE AS YOU CAN!!!!!!!

In Solidarity!

Movement Building Working Group
Liberty Plaza
NYC

Civil Rights complaint

The Occupations Report: 11/12

November 14th, 2011 · Ella · The Occupations Report
12 comments

We’ve recently seen this report posted and shared through social media, but we thought it might be helpful to have another place on the web it can be published and accessed daily. This Occupation Report is compiled by Rebuild the Dream. Occupy Together has no ties to Rebuild the Dream or Move On outside of requesting permission to repost this report.

Are you interested in helping conduct Training Sessions on key organizing and activism skills?  We’ve been receiving lots of feedback from readers requesting both trainers and materials on the ground. If you are a trainer or have an interest in training and are open to helping, please let us know at: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dFVIaFp1dEhqc1hScVBreE5McFhoWWc6MQ.  The Daily Occupations Report is trying to match Trainers and resources to the sites that need them. If you have any materials, guides or links to training resources, please send them to monique@rebuildthedream.com or lizbutlerdc@gmail.com. We will be sharing those resources at the end of the reports all next week.

This report includes updates from Occupy sites and related efforts across the country and the globe. It includes big wins, local organizing efforts, protests/events, police activity reports and calls to action where additional support from allies/general public may be needed.

For more updates from occupations around the country, listen to the Occupation America podcast at http://soundcloud.com/occupation-america

Occupy Atlanta
[Atlanta CBS report] The home base for Occupy Atlanta has tested positive for tuberculosis.

The Fulton County Health Department confirmed Wednesday that residents at the homeless shelter where protesters have been occupying have contracted the drug-resistant disease. WGCL reports that a health department spokeswoman said there is a possibility that both Occupy Atlanta protesters and the homeless people in the shelter may still be at risk since tuberculosis is contracted through air contact.

Occupy Berkeley
Occupy Berkeley held educational outreach in front of Chase bank urging members of the community to divest from the big banks and join local credit unions Saturday.

Continue reading »

Power Hungry Spam Filter (a request for advice)

November 13th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements
9 comments

Hey there wonderful citizens of the web. We need some help/insight from someone who has a better understanding of WordPress than us. We found it odd that we hadn’t had any recent comments coming through, so one of us got smart and tried submitting a test comment. Turns out ALL of our comments are being caught by the spam filter.

A week or so ago we started getting hundreds of comments that looked like this:

Submitted on 2011/11/03 at 8:05 am
glzidpddvqzuphfuifs, Porn, http://www.freesex-tgp.com/ , UzfZtIj.

Since these were clearly spam, and there spilling in by the hundreds, we started flagging them for the spam filter in order to prevent a complete invasion of these spammy comments.

Also recently, we’ve opened up user registration for users to be able to submit articles. Unfortunately, the function is competley pointless outside of the submission page becase we have a caching add-on that prevents Worpress from recognizing a signed-in user.

Somehow, one or a combination of these two things has made it so the spam filter is automatically spamming EVERY comment have recieved for the last several days.

Is there a way to reset our spam filter? Prevent the spammy messages we were getting? Any help/insight is very appreciated.

Also, our sincerest apologies to all who have recently commented. We’ll be going through the thousands of “spam” comments to be “unflagging” all comments throughout the day.

Occupy Together

Also, you can comment on this post. We’ll still receive the comments we just have to “un-spam” them. If easier, please email us at info@occupytogether.org.


Occupy Research Survey

The OccupyResearch network is pleased to launch this exciting survey, which aims to create a better understanding of who engages with the Occupy movement, and how — it includes questions about media, communication, political activities, and more. Read more about it here.

Take the online survey now!

Mass Actions Calendar

  • February 29, 2012#F29 Shut Down the Corporations
  • May 12, 201212.M WorldrEvolution

Recent Twitter Activity

© 2012 Occupy Together – Please feel free to distribute any of the original content on this site across the internet.

#F29 Shut Down the Corporations

January 7th, 2012 · Ella · Announcements                 24 comments

National Call to Action Made by the Portland General Assembly – January 1st, 2012

Occupy Portland calls for a national day of non-violent direct action to reclaim our voices and challenge our society’s obsession with profit and greed by shutting down the corporations. We are rejecting a society that does not allow us control of our future. We will reclaim our ability to shape our world in a democratic, cooperative, just and sustainable direction.

We call on the Occupy Movement and everyone seeking freedom and justice to join us in this day of action.

There has been a theft by the 1% of our democratic ability to shape and form the society in which we live and our society is steered toward the destructive pursuit of consumption, profit and greed at the expense of all else.

We call on people to target corporations that are part of the American Legislative Exchange Council which is a prime example of the way corporations buy off legislators and craft legislation that serves the interests of corporations and not people. They used it to create the anti-labor legislation in Wisconsin and the racist bill SB 1070 in Arizona among so many others. They use ALEC to spread these corporate laws around the country.

In doing this we begin to recreate our democracy. In doing this we begin to create a society that is organized to meet human needs and sustain life.

On February 29th, we will reclaim our future from the 1%. We will shut down the corporations and recreate our democracy.

Join us! Leap into action! Reclaim our future! Shut down the corporations!

*This call to action was issued by the Portland General Assembly on January 1st, 2012 with unanimous support.

National Website – http://www.shutdownthecorporations.org

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/F29-Shut-Down-the-Corporations/169049533194891?sk=wall

Facebook Event: http://www.facebook.com/events/261864810546909

Twitter: #f29 @f29action

Stand Up Against Attacks on Our Civil Liberties

December 15th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements                 21 comments

The LA General Assembly became an early voice in the Occupy Movement against the indefinite military detention provisions in the The National Defense Authorization Act of 2012 (NDAA). They passed and released a public statement against the NDAA and held actions in opposition of the provisions in the following days.

Civil rights groups, counterterrorism experts and former military leaders have expressed serious concerns with sections of the NDAA which would effectively allow for the indefinite military detention of United States citizens and lawful immigrants in America (see 1031 & 1032 of HR 1540). A group of Lawmakers submitted a letter to House and Senate leaders stating their concerns of the possibility of these provisions undermining the rights of US citizens.

While adjustments have been made in backdoor meetings after President Obama’s threat of veto, none of these primary concerns were directly addressed. The NDAA in its present form could still allow for an indefinite military detention of a US citizen on American soil without trial. Despite these egregious attacks on our civil liberties, the NDAA will likely be passed in the Senate and signed into law today.

Coincidentally, today also marks Bill of Rights Day.

So thousands are refusing to idly stand by and will take to the streets to defend the Bill of Rights for all of us. Occupy Wall Street is joining several national coalitions to voice opposition of the NDAA and other recent attacks on our civil liberties. Boston will march against indefinite detention and Bill of Rights Day Rallies Against the NDAA are planned in Los Angeles, Sacramento, Houston, Ithaca, Flagstaff, York and Hartford in addition to more actions around the country.

If this is something you feel strongly about, do something in your community to raise awareness. Explain why this is something that concerns you. Discuss this with your friends, your family and your neighbors. Express your concerns to those who are supposed to represent you.

Together, we will be heard.

For more information on national actions, go to: bordc.org

#10D International Day of Action for #GlobalChange

December 8th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements                 14 comments

Global civil society is being threatened by a system based on power and not on human values. Day after day it represses basic freedoms and consistently favors the greed of the few over the needs of the many. This power finances wars, food and pharmaceutical monopolies, it sponsors dictatorial regimes across the globe, destroying environments, manipulating and censoring information flow and transparency.

This Saturday, December 10, people all around the world will stand up together to demand the rights we were promised in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, signed and approved by most of the world’s governments and the basis for many of our constitutions.

The struggle for our rights as human beings underlies everything we have demanded in every square and every demonstration in this historic year of global change. From East to West, North to South: on the 10th of December we will take to the streets and squares together to demand the fundamental principles that were promised and are inherent to Human Beings.

Visit 10december.net for more information on the global movement. Search for or submit a report for #10D actions in your area.

ACTIONS FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Occupy Brazil is holding Rally & March of Candles. Details on this Facebook event.

Occupy Tuscaloosa is holding a march for human rights on the national Day of Action for the Occupy movement and the anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Occupy London’s lunchtime GA will provide space for London lovers, neighbours and visitors to discuss plans for occupations, teach outs and other actions specific to the local areas of London. More info here.

Also, live streaming of protests and show of cross-culture solidarity at the St. Paul Cathedral with guest speaker Professor Charles Tripp. Info here.

Madrid TomaLaPlaza is holding a week of action that starts on the 10th of December (International Human Rights Day) and culminates on the 18th of December (the global action day against racism and for the rights of migrants, refugees and displaced people) including performances, a Forum of Human Rights at Puerta del Sol, music show with various choirs, etc. Find more details here.

Occupy Montreal

After their eviction and the disrespect of their rights, Occupy Montreal will march to and occupy the SPVM HQ (Montreal Police Head Quarters) on this day of human rights and liberty. Complete schedule of events found here.

Occupy Nanamio will be taking part in Amnesty International’s Write for Rights campaign.

Occupy Nashville has planned a Global Human Rights Day March

Occupy Omaha will be holding a symbolic cross-town march uniting traditionally segregated areas of the city. Demonstrators will start from North Omaha and South Omaha and converge at the encampment.

Occupons La Defense (Paris)

As part of the global day of mobilization for the 63rd anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the indignation of Paris are calling for a mobilization.

Occupy Sydney is holding a Global Human Rights Day Festival with info stalls, Free School, music, food and more!

Find more actions here.

National Day of Action to Occupy Our Homes

December 4th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements                 31 comments                  – Tags: actions, foreclosures, mass action, occupy movement, occupy our homes, occupy wall st

Banks took such high risks that they placed our entire economy in serious jeopardy. In return, they received trillions of dollars from the Fed and billions of dollars from hard working tax payers to get back on their feet. Homeowners take risks when buying homes; however, when they lose their jobs or are unable to afford their medical attention they don’t get bailouts, they lose everything.

With our current environment of corporate irresponsibility and greed, political impotence and corruption, all it takes is for you to lose your job or get dropped from your health insurance to lose it all. Just because it hasn’t happened to you, your loved ones or your neighbors yet, doesn’t mean the threat isn’t real.

This Tuesday, thousands will be standing up for their neighbors in a struggle against a system that places financial gain above the human need of shelter. Banks would rather let houses deteriorate than renegotiate loans with those who make them homes and build our communities.

Occupy Minnesota had taken this issue head-on shortly after their formation when a fellow Occupier called out for help in keeping her home.

This Tuesday, Occupy Minnesota will organize in neighborhoods to defend families facing foreclosures in the communities most affected by the financial crisis. They’ll expand their occupation to a second foreclosed home in South Minneapolis.

NATIONAL HAPPENINGS

Occupy Our Homes is launching off with the National Day of Action to Occupy Our Homes

Continue reading »

Embrace Community Not Consumption on #BuyNothingDay

November 23rd, 2011 · Ella · Announcements                 31 comments

As retailers compete to see who can open their doors the earliest without offending the sensibilities of the public, Americans have been questioning the very tradition of over-consumption. Occupy Black Friday, OccupyXMass and Buy Nothing Day actions are being held throughout the country and world as a way to stand up against blatant corporate greed.

If you are opting-out this year, we’ve whipped up this little gift exemption card for you to print out give to your friends and family over Thanksgiving right before the chaos of corporate holiday spending ensues. Or, send this image as an eCard for those you won’t be spending the day with.

NATIONAL HAPPENINGS

#BuyNothingDay

Historically, Buy Nothing Day has been about fasting from hyper consumerism – a break from the cash register and reflecting on how dependent we really are on conspicuous consumption. This 20th anniversary of Buy Nothing Day will be married with the message of #Occupy. Occupy the minds of Xmas shoppers with these posters. Organize a whirly mart, santa sit-in or Jesus walk.

Continue reading »

Call for an Alternative Day of Action on Human Rights Day Saturday, December 10th, 2011

November 19th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements                 53 comments

The success of October 15th has triggered an unprecedented momentum for global action. Humanity has united across boundaries in a struggle for real democracy and individual rights. Essential to this struggle is the respect for human life and living conditions, including environments

Global civil society is being threatened by a system based on power and not on human values. Day after day it represses basic freedoms and consistently favors the greed of the few over the needs of the many. This power finances wars, food and pharmaceutical monopolies, it sponsors dictatorial regimes across the globe, destroying environments, manipulating and censoring information flow and transparency.

Despite our different cultural backgrounds and social contexts, we all suffer the same threats. Our freedom and dignity are under attack as a result of market dynamics and corrupt government institutions that are turning our local and global societies into increasingly unjust places. The governments of this planet must work for the people, not against them. The time has come to stand up for our rights together and to demand the rights we were promised in the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights, signed and approved by most of the world’s governments and the basis for many of our constitutions.

The struggle for our rights as human beings underlies everything we have demanded in every square and every demonstration in this historic year of global change. There is no better culmination to this year of protest than a global day of action to defend our inalienable human equity from those trying to take it away from us. From East to West, North to South: on the 10th of December we will take to the streets and squares together to demand the fundamental principles that were promised and are inherent to the Human Beings.

We would like to propose the week starting on the 10th of December (10/12 – 17/12) as a time for alternative forms of protest which will be found after a debate between all of us. The idea is to participate in proposing new forms of action with a creative spirit: we can organize public forums and workshops, flash-mobs, we can promote the movement in local schools and neighborhoods or get in contact with humanitarian organizations working with the same goals.

VISIT 10DECEMBER.NET FOR MORE INFO

ADD YOUR PROPOSALS FOR AN ALTERNATIVE ACTION OR VIEW AND COMMENT ON IDEAS HERE

#N17 Mass Day of Action

November 16th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements                 168 comments

OWS is calling upon you to participate in a national day of direct action on November 17 in celebration of the the two month anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Occupy Wall St

7:00 Shut Down Wall Street

3:00 Occupy the Subways

5:00 Take the Square

This information and more at: occupywallst.org/action/november-17th

Occupy Colleges

Students across the country will gather together on November 17 to protest the rising costs of college education, and the diminishing quality in that education from universities. Students will strike by gathering in central locations throughout each school, or in solidarity at Occupy Wall Street.

More information at: occupycolleges.org

Portland

Occupying steelbridge in morning

Rally afterwards

Subsequently occupying banks

http://www.n17pdx.org

https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=104127476368742

Los Angeles

1,000+ people to take over the street of Downtown, Los Angeles. Activists will meet at Bank of America Plaza at 333 S Hope St. and march to the corner of Figueroa and 4th St., where we will shut down the intersection.

http://www.occupylosangeles.org/?q=node%2F1970

Boston

Mass Uniting’s Jobs Not Cuts March & Rally at Dewey Square

https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=185521434866267

Prior to March @ FSU: Martin Luther King Jr, Stokely Carmichael, American Democracy, and the Search for Economic Justice: From the Civil Rights Movement to the Occupy Movement

Minneapolis

3:00pm Student Rally @ Northrop Plaza

4:00pm March onto the 10th Ave Bridge

5:30pm Rally on the Peoples’ Plaza (Government Plaza)

https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=189395914476438

Lexington

5:30 Solidarity March

http://t.co/5AZrXKdV

Chicago

5:30 Mass Action at Jackson and LaSalle

occupychi.org/2011/11/15/thursday-occupy-chicago-participates-national-day-action-november-17

INTERNATIONAL

Spain

A general strike of university students will be taking place in the following cities: Barcelona, Girona, Lleida, Tarragona, Palma, Sevilla, Santiago de Compostela, Murcia, Madrid, Valencia, Castello, Alicante, Zaragoza

17:00: Demonstration in Madrid

Place: From Nuevos Ministerios to Puerta del Sol Square

Call: Assembly UAM-CSIC / 15M

tomalafacultad.net

madrid.tomalaplaza.net/2011/11/08/17n-manifestacion-estatal-por-los-servicios-publicos

Belgium

Activists are mobilising for sit-ins at universities and schools to discuss the ongoing protests around the world, resist the increasing commercialisation of education and connect to the struggle on the global level.

ism-global.net/ghent_occupy_nov17

Germany

Massive student strikes, flash mobs, rallies, and other actions will be taking place in dozens of cities

ism-global.net/germany_education_strike_nov17

Letter from Movement Building

November 15th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements                 29 comments                  – Tags: eviction, help, Occupy Wall Street

Friends,

Liberty Plaza (Zuccotti Park), home of Occupy Wall Street for the past two months and birthplace of the 99% movement that has spread across the country and around the world, was evicted by a large police force in full riot gear.

Three ways to get involved and help:

—————————————————-

Come out in person today at 9am EST

—————————————————-

We are re-gathering today at 9am EST at Canal and 6th Ave. This movement can’t be contained in one square block in lower Manhattan. It is bigger than that. You can’t evict an idea whose time had come. Show your support. Turn out en masse.

—————————————————-

Join a Call to discuss Direct Action at noon EST

—————————————————-

We also have a Direct Action call planned today at noon. This was already scheduled via InterOccupy.org, but we’d like to suggest that the call be used to directly discuss what can be done in response to today’s eviction. Please spread the word to Direct Action folks in your occupation that this call is happening!

To register for the call, go here:

http://interoccupy.org/

—————————————————-

Call assistant Attorney General with the Civil Rights Division

—————————————————-

Attached to this email is a complaint submitted on behalf of the Occupy Movement to the Department of Justice in response to the increasing antagonism of police against peaceful protesters. It was formally submitted to the Department of Justice on 11/10/2011. It is addressed to a Mister Thomas Perez, the assistant Attorney General with the Civil Rights Division. Mr. Perez’s office number is (202) 514-4609. Let us call, tied up his lines, and demand that every citizen has a right to peaceably assemble without the threat of police violence. Forward widely.

PLEASE FORWARD THIS EMAIL IMMEDIATELY AS FAR AND WIDE AS YOU CAN!!!!!!!

In Solidarity!

Movement Building Working Group

Liberty Plaza

NYC

Civil Rights complaint

The Occupations Report: 11/12

November 14th, 2011 · Ella · The Occupations Report                 12 comments

We’ve recently seen this report posted and shared through social media, but we thought it might be helpful to have another place on the web it can be published and accessed daily. This Occupation Report is compiled by Rebuild the Dream. Occupy Together has no ties to Rebuild the Dream or Move On outside of requesting permission to repost this report.

Are you interested in helping conduct Training Sessions on key organizing and activism skills? We’ve been receiving lots of feedback from readers requesting both trainers and materials on the ground. If you are a trainer or have an interest in training and are open to helping, please let us know at: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dFVIaFp1dEhqc1hScVBreE5McFhoWWc6MQ. The Daily Occupations Report is trying to match Trainers and resources to the sites that need them. If you have any materials, guides or links to training resources, please send them to monique@rebuildthedream.com or lizbutlerdc@gmail.com. We will be sharing those resources at the end of the reports all next week.

This report includes updates from Occupy sites and related efforts across the country and the globe. It includes big wins, local organizing efforts, protests/events, police activity reports and calls to action where additional support from allies/general public may be needed.

For more updates from occupations around the country, listen to the Occupation America podcast at http://soundcloud.com/occupation-america

Occupy Atlanta

[Atlanta CBS report] The home base for Occupy Atlanta has tested positive for tuberculosis.

The Fulton County Health Department confirmed Wednesday that residents at the homeless shelter where protesters have been occupying have contracted the drug-resistant disease. WGCL reports that a health department spokeswoman said there is a possibility that both Occupy Atlanta protesters and the homeless people in the shelter may still be at risk since tuberculosis is contracted through air contact.

Occupy Berkeley

Occupy Berkeley held educational outreach in front of Chase bank urging members of the community to divest from the big banks and join local credit unions Saturday.

Continue reading »

Power Hungry Spam Filter (a request for advice)

November 13th, 2011 · Ella · Announcements                 9 comments

Hey there wonderful citizens of the web. We need some help/insight from someone who has a better understanding of WordPress than us. We found it odd that we hadn’t had any recent comments coming through, so one of us got smart and tried submitting a test comment. Turns out ALL of our comments are being caught by the spam filter.

A week or so ago we started getting hundreds of comments that looked like this:

Submitted on 2011/11/03 at 8:05 am

glzidpddvqzuphfuifs, Porn, http://www.freesex-tgp.com/ , UzfZtIj.

Since these were clearly spam, and there spilling in by the hundreds, we started flagging them for the spam filter in order to prevent a complete invasion of these spammy comments.

Also recently, we’ve opened up user registration for users to be able to submit articles. Unfortunately, the function is competley pointless outside of the submission page becase we have a caching add-on that prevents Worpress from recognizing a signed-in user.

Somehow, one or a combination of these two things has made it so the spam filter is automatically spamming EVERY comment have recieved for the last several days.

Is there a way to reset our spam filter? Prevent the spammy messages we were getting? Any help/insight is very appreciated.

Also, our sincerest apologies to all who have recently commented. We’ll be going through the thousands of “spam” comments to be “unflagging” all comments throughout the day.

Occupy Together

Also, you can comment on this post. We’ll still receive the comments we just have to “un-spam” them. If easier, please email us at info@occupytogether.org.

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Occupy Research Survey

The OccupyResearch network is pleased to launch this exciting survey, which aims to create a better understanding of who engages with the Occupy movement, and how — it includes questions about media, communication, political activities, and more. Read more about it here.

Take the online survey now!

Mass Actions Calendar

February 29, 2012#F29 Shut Down the Corporations

May 12, 201212.M WorldrEvolution

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Occupy Oakland facing police violence, again.

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© 2012 Occupy Together – Please feel free to distribute any of the original content on this site across the internet.

Occup Wall Street Drops Eviction Lawsuit


‘Occupy Wall Street’ drops eviction lawsuit


“Occupy Wall Street” protesters dropped on Tuesday their two month lawsuit against New York City over the group’s eviction from Zuccotti Park. The National Lawyers Guild, representing the protesters, said the decision stemmed from private security removing the barricades surrounding the park two weeks ago. The park’s owner, Brookfield Properties,…

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Police drag Occupy activists from Santorum event


Police on Monday physically dragged several Occupy Tampa protesters from an event with Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum and cited them for trespassing. One of the men had thrown glitter at the candidate as he was he was giving his closing remarks. WESH cameras caught a man in a suit…

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Occupy DC faces no-camping clampdown ‘very soon’


WASHINGTON — The National Park Service (NPS) said Tuesday it will “very soon” clamp down on a Washington offshoot of Occupy Wall Street that pitched camp near the White House nearly four months ago. Testifying on Capitol Hill, NPS director Jonathan Jarvis defended his federal agency’s decision to tolerate open-ended…

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Director of National Park Services defends right of ‘Occupy DC’ protesters


Jonathan Jarvis, Director of National Park Services, explained to Rep. Joe Walsh (R-IL) on Tuesday why the “Occupy DC” protesters had a constitutional right to camp out 24 hours a day. His comments came during a House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing regarding the the “Occupy” protesters in Washington,…

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TARP pay czar caved on executive pay limits, bonuses


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Pressure from financial institutions and Treasury officials undermined an effort to limit executive pay at seven companies rescued with taxpayer money, a new government audit showed on Tuesday. The official overseeing executive pay for bailout firms limited cash compensation and made some reductions in pay, but still…

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Romney to protesters: ‘Take a hike’


At a campaign event in Florida Sunday, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney tried to get tough with a group of Occupy Wall Street protesters, telling them to “take a hike.” While speaking in Ormond Beach, the candidate found himself being “mic checked,” a phrase Occupy Wall Street protesters often use…

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‘Occupy London’ vacates building after brief stay


Anti-capitalist protesters of the ‘Occupy London’ movement have vacated a building in the city’s financial district less than a day after entering it, they said on Sunday. ‘Occupy London’ activists entered the abandoned nine-storey Roman House building — formerly used by finance companies — in the Barbican arts and conference…

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‘Occupy London’ protesters take over new building


Anti-capitalist protesters said Saturday they have taken over a large building in the City of London financial district. ‘Occupy London’ activists entered the nine-storey Roman House building in the Barbican earlier this morning, the group announced. “Occupy London this morning publicly repossessed Roman House, an abandoned nine-storey office building in…

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Portland, ME calls for end to corporate personhood


The city of Portland, Maine joined other cities across the nation in supporting an amendment to the U.S. Constitution abolishing corporate personhood. The Portland City Council voted 6 to 2 in support of a nonbinding resolution calling on Maine’s congressional delegation to support such an amendment, according to the Portland…

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Romney scolds protester for asking about the 99 percent


Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney took a page out of the Chris Christie playbook on Thursday and berated an Occupy Wall Street activist for asking him how he would support less-wealthy Americans. Romney was signing autographs outside his campaign headquarters in Charleston, South Carolina when a man asked, “What will…

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