“the stakes are too high for us not to make the absolute most of this moment.”

We ran into Naomi Klein at Liberty Square and asked if we could interview her. “After the march!” she called out. But after finding ourselves part of a slow-moving mass of 42,000 humans, we barely found time to get to Penn Station for our scheduled train trip to Washington, DC. Fortunately, this brief interview with Ms. Klein offers some nice insights into what makes this movement so compelling. And she offers some advice regarding the importance of making the most of this critical moment.

keith olbermann reads the first collective statement of occupy wall street

What are the occupation’s demands? Many folks we spoke with explained that making demands is ultimately disempowering because it gives the other side the power to address or ignore them as they see fit. In lieu of demands, the Occupy Wall Street folks put forth this first collective statement. Keep in mind that different occupations will most likely produce different declarations as each of the local movements is place-based, addressing needs specific to that region. Consensus will unfold organically over time.

a movement for our times

For the past week, Zoraborealis and I have witnessed the emergence of the occupation movements in Chicago, New York and Washington, DC. We’ve marched amidst tens of thousands of people from diverse backgrounds, all united in a common goal: to transform our economic and political systems so that they better address the needs of the earth and its inhabitants. Continue reading “a movement for our times”

let the journey begin!

Markopolo and Zoraborealis embark on a cross country rail trip to the Occupation of Wall Street and the Occupation of Washington. Is democracy still breathing in the USA? Stay tuned to find out. Continue reading “let the journey begin!”

conversation #3—preparation— “how information can be controlled and suppressed in the corridors of power”

(seen above, Lawrence Summers takes a public nap after joining Team Obama)

A message from Conor:

Greetings my fellow concerned citizens,

Wednesday night after our meeting I came home and began reading The HuffingtonPost, I came across a story about a battle brewing between Ron Suskind and the Obama White House. Ron Suskind has written an unflattering book about the inner workings of the Obama administration. Continue reading “conversation #3—preparation— “how information can be controlled and suppressed in the corridors of power””

conversation #2—gleanings

I have just three things to teach:
simplicity, patience, compassion.
These three are your greatest treasures.
Simple in actions and in thoughts,
you return to the source of being.
Patient with both friends and enemies,
you accord with the way things are.
Compassionate toward yourself,
you reconcile all beings in the world.
—Lao-tzu, Tao Te Ching

 

I’m going to write down some thoughts regarding the last meeting, and I encourage all of you who attended to do the same in the comments section below. You may also comment on comments. As always, please remain civil—people often let loose in an online forum. This is not that kind of forum. Continue reading “conversation #2—gleanings”

the conversation begins—thomas jefferson & us

Thomas Jefferson portrait

“Every human being must be viewed according to what it is good for. For none of us, no, not one is perfect. And were we to love none who had imperfections, this world would be a desert for our love.” —Thomas Jefferson

Like many good things it started with a casual chat in a cafe. Conor and I both felt troubled by the state of the world, how it will affect the futures of our children and, for that matter, all children, and the ways in which so much of the public dialogue feels dumbed-down and irrelevant to the deeper issues at play. If democracy depends upon an informed and engaged citizenry, then we must relearn how to inform one another through open dialogue and debate. And so we decided to host a political conversation amongst people from a wide range of political leanings. And then we invited the entire town! Continue reading “the conversation begins—thomas jefferson & us”

who killed economic growth?

Yes, crimes were committed, and the Wall Street criminals escaped (for now)—not only unscathed but rewarded with infuriating bonuses. But Richard Heinberg’s new book The End of Growth makes a compelling case that the real source of the economic downturn is more systemic than villainous. Our economy is based on a fantasy of infinite growth, and it clashes with the real world of finite resources. This brief 6:30 short nicely summarizes his argument. If it sparks your curiosity you’ll want to check out some excerpts from his book.