A seagull careens overhead and trills its high pitched cry as it makes an acrobatic dive for some crumb left on the plaza. My eyes follow the dive though I continue to be present with the circle. I am unaccustomed to such a glorious day. The sun is uninhibited, actually warming my skin, and there is only a gentle breeze. No sign of the more typical bone chilling North Coast cold, gray wind.
We sit on the grass in a loose circle. Two young men fight with mock swords behind us, laughing at their own missteps and brilliant parries. Beyond them a group of hitchhikers spange pedestrians likely to have money in their pockets. A single squad car and officer look on, disinterested. I am at peace. Despite my appearance, I belong.
The moderator is a gentle, open woman in a cowboy hat and well worn jeans. She keeps the meeting low key and the anger that bubbles up at other meetings is quickly dissipated by her soft spoken interjections. She has us introduce ourselves and say something about why we are here.
To my left a traveling college student introduces himself in English heavily accented by his native French. He has come here to see the differences between American revolution and French. Next to me is a man who arrived on bicycle in a worn denim jacket, decorated with various writings and hand drawn art. His gray hair is tied out of a weather beaten, bearded face. He tells about arriving in Arcata in the late 60’s, the last time revolution was in the air. He has waited a long time to see it resurface and glad that it has finally come.
The young man to my right says his name is Mango and the man next to him is Forrest. These are “forest” names, of course. A long tradition from Redwood Summer, when tree-sitters, trying to save the last of America’s Redwoods, gave arresting officers these false names, making conviction more difficult. Their speech is more angry than the rest, but it is redirected by the group away from aggression at the CEO’s of banks, toward education of their customers. The group decided on a lobby sit-in for two of the major banks in a few days.
(ek hornbeck- Only TheMomCat has the magic <iframe> touch. Set your YouTubes to ‘Use old embed code’ and strip out everything that’s not between the <embed></embed>. It’s hard for me to even get iframe to print!)
He has the thick hard fingers of a carpenter, nails short and blunt, yet he can tie a micro-filament knot with the delicacy of a surgeon. Fly fishing season was nearly over, and there was little to do these days but prep for next year. The sound of the phone not ringing was almost palpable over the drone of the local news broadcast at noon. Another idle day, the contractor must had not coughed up the money for the next delivery of materials. His girlfriend had been making noises about him moving in with her and her two very young kids. It felt too soon, but his rent was already two weeks late. The cops beating on those people was depressing as hell; he turned off the news and went outside to rake the last of the fall leaves.
She was an angel. That’s what she like to call her temp job doing in-home care for the elderly. She was getting attached to her clients, and had already gotten in trouble for cleaning one persons house while they slept. “Not in your job description,” she was told. Worse? When she helped that half blind lady write out her checks, she learned that the company was getting over three times her pay an hour for her services. She would love to work for herself, save them money and perhaps make a little more. Things were tight enough, and she was up against enough keeping custody of her two daughters being openly gay. But self-employed meant paying for a LLC license and having to insure herself heavily. Hell, they didn’t have health insurance at home, how could she afford to insure a business? She had no idea what the demonstrations were about, but the pastor at her church said they were anarchists. Sounded scary.
Over 3,000 people gathered at Liberty Plaza in the pre-dawn hours this morning to defend the peaceful Occupation near Wall Street. The crowd cheered at the news that multinational real estate firm Brookfield Properties will postpone its so-called ‘cleanup’ of the park and that Mayor Bloomberg has told the NYPD to stand down on orders to remove protesters. On the eve of the October 15 global day of action against Wall Street greed, this development has emboldened the movement and sent a clear message that the power of the people has prevailed against Wall Street. …
On October 15th, Occupy Wall Street will demonstrate in concert over 951 cities in 82 countries and counting as people around the globe protest in an international day of solidarity against the greed and corruption of the 1%.
Mr. Bloomberg, speaking later in the morning on his weekly radio program on WOR-AM (710), attributed the decision to postpone the cleaning to the company that owns the park, Brookfield Properties, which he said had been pressured to back off by elected officials. Mr. Bloomberg indicated that he had some misgivings about the decision, and was not sure what would happen next.
“Yesterday, as of 8 o’clock at night, they were going ahead to do it, but as of midnight they called and said they wanted to postpone the cleaning operations to see if they could work out an agreement with the protesters,” Mr. Bloomberg said. “My understanding is that Brookfield got lots of calls from many elected officials threatening them and saying if you don’t stop this we’ll make your life more difficult.”
That is an ugly allegation.
Bloomberg and his cronies will be back with some other reason to put an end to the protest. He must protect his fellow oligarchs from the embarrassment by the masses before the world. Right now it might create an international incident.
Solidarity hero Lech Walesa [sic] is flying to New York to show his support for the Occupy Wall Street protesters. “How could I not respond,” Walesa told a Polish newspaper Wednesday. “The thousands of people gathered near Wall Street are worried about the fate of their future, the fate of their country. This is something I understand.” 
Wałęsa says he’s coming to help protest economic “unfairness.” “Union leaders and capitalists need to figure out what to do, because otherwise they will have to contend with a worldwide revolt against capitalism,” he warned.
On October 15th people from all over the world will take to the streets and squares.
From America to Asia, from Africa to Europe, people are rising up to claim their rights and demand a true democracy. Now it is time for all of us to join in a global non violent protest.
The ruling powers work for the benefit of just a few, ignoring the will of the vast majority and the human and environmental price we all have to pay. This intolerable situation must end.
United in one voice, we will let politicians, and the financial elites they serve, know it is up to us, the people, to decide our future. We are not goods in the hands of politicians and bankers who do not represent us.
On October 15th, we will meet on the streets to initiate the global change we want. We will peacefully demonstrate, talk and organize until we make it happen.
It’s time for us to unite. It’s time for them to listen.
On this day in 1815, Napoleon Bonaparte begins his final exile on the Island of St. Helene.
Napoleon Bonaparte (15 August 1769 – 5 May 1821) was a military and political leader of France and Emperor of the French as Napoleon I, whose actions shaped European politics in the early 19th century.
Napoleon was born in Corsica to parents of minor noble Italian ancestry and trained as an artillery officer in mainland France. Bonaparte rose to prominence under the French First Republic and led successful campaigns against the First and Second Coalitions arrayed against France. In 1799, he staged a coup d’etat and installed himself as First Consul; five years later the French Senate proclaimed him emperor. In the first decade of the 19th century, the French Empire under Napoleon engaged in a series of conflicts-the Napoleonic Wars-involving every major European power. After a streak of victories, France secured a dominant position in continental Europe, and Napoleon maintained the French sphere of influence through the formation of extensive alliances and the appointment of friends and family members to rule other European countries as French client states.
Napoleon’s campaigns are studied at military academies the world over. While considered a tyrant by his opponents, he is also remembered for the establishment of the Napoleonic code, which laid the administrative and judicial foundations for much of Western Europe.
Typhoon Roke didn’t slow down testing of a new maglev high-speed train in Yamanashi Prefecture, which apparently passed with flying colors during the storm.
Two guys who run a company in Hokkaido called alibi.com-that makes up bogus background info for people applying for loans, jobs, etc-were in trouble with Johnny Law… for making up bogus info. “Since that’s our business, we provided a false explanation,” reasoned one of the accused.
Yakult Swallows outfielder Aaron Guiel hung up the cleats after a five-year spell in Japan that saw him belt 90 home runs. Back injuries forced the former MLB player to call it a career and head back to his native Canada.
A story in The Asahi Shimbun said a 132-meter long ferry called the Yotei Maru 2, docked at a maritime museum in Odaiba, can be yours for the taking, provided you have a place to moor the vessel.
Not surprisingly, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism reported that “land prices have tumbled in the three prefectures of northeastern Japan most affected by the March 11 disaster.” Some property in Miyagi Prefecture has plummeted more than 18 percent. Now that’s a toxic market.
On the other side of the coin, a spokeswoman for the Candle House chain said that sales of candles increased about 50 percent after March 11.
Yukio Akagariyama became the first Japanese billiards player to win the World 9-Ball Championship in 13 years when he beat Ronnie Alcano of the Philippines in the final in Doha.
au will start selling Apple’s iPhone in Japan, and local cellphone producers fear the worst.
In other news from the cellphone sector, NTT DoCoMo is coming out with a phone that has a cover, or jacket, capable of “measuring bad breath, body fat and even radiation.”
A security guard working on a cash delivery truck in Saitama was shot in both knees by a man who snatched a bag from him before taking off on a motorbike. The bag reportedly contained only a few documents and no cash.