We call on all students, teachers, workers, and parents from all levels of education —pre-K-12 through higher education in public and private institutions— and all Occupy assemblies, labor unions, and organizations of oppressed communities, to mobilize on March 1st, 2012 across the country to tell those in power: The resources exist for high-quality education for all. If we make the rich and the corporations pay we can reverse the budget cuts, tuition hikes, and attacks on job security, and fully fund public education and social services.
This is a call to work together, but it is up to each school and organization to determine what local and regional actions—such as strikes, walkouts, occupations, marches, etc.—they will take to say no to business as usual.
We have the momentum, the numbers, and the determination to win. Education is not for sale. Let’s take back our schools. Let’s make history.
Nathan Kleinman, a 29-year-old member of the Occupy Philadelphia movement, intends to run for congress in Pennsylvania’s 13th district against Democratic incumbent Allyson Schwartz.
"The petition gathering period starts today and lasts for three weeks, so I plan to file by then," Kleinman told me over the phone today. "I’ll be running in the Democratic primary."
Kleinman, who refers to himself as a human rights activist and organizer, served as an aide to Joe Sestak’s unsuccessful 2010 Senate campaign before becoming a legislative assistant to Pennsylvania State Representative Josh Shapiro.
More recently, he has been a member of the Occupy Philadelphia movement, participating in a number of associated working groups, including “Free University,” “Outreach Working Group,” “Process Working Group,” “Camp Liberty,” and “The Committee of Correspondence,” through which he became involved with InterOccupy.org, which he describes as “a central hub for communications” in the national Occupy movement.
Now, he plans to campaign for the House of Representatives, which would make him the first member of the Occupy movement to seek a seat in Congress.
"After a GREAT meeting tonight in Jenkintown, I’m excited to say: I’m running for Congress!!" Kleinman wrote on his Facebook page last night. He later joined Facebook’s “Occupy US Congress” group.
Kleinman told me that he intends to run on his own, autonomous platform, but will “stay involved in the Occupy movement” during the campaign.
A spokesperson in Representative Schwartz’s office told me that she knew “a little” about Kleinman, but did not elaborate. A spokesperson with the Pennsylvania state election office confirmed that filing petitions for 2012 went out today, and said that an applicant must obtain 1,000 signatures to qualify.
"You need 1,000 signatures and a hundred dollars," Kleinman explained. "It’s a pretty low bar."
It is all about the balance of power within the ruling elite, because now they all understand, if Putin goes, maybe 10, 15, maybe 20 percent of those who are surrounding him and making this core of the elite, they will be facing trial; they can lose money. But most of them — 80 percent at least, maybe more — will be making deals with the new government. Maybe giving up some money, but securing their fortunes. If they go into oppressive mode, then the numbers will change and any revolutionary explosion will blow them up.
Just 10 years ago, the idea of using armed robots in war was the stuff of Hollywood fantasy. Today, the United States military has
more than 7,000 unmanned aerial systems, popularly called drones. There are 12,000 more on the ground. Last year, they carried out hundreds of strikes — both covert and overt — in six countries, transforming the way our democracy deliberates and engages in what we used to think of as war.
We don’t have a draft anymore; less than 0.5 percent of Americans over 18 serve in the active-duty military. We do not declare war anymore; the last time Congress actually did so was in 1942 — against Bulgaria, Hungary and Romania. We don’t buy war bonds or pay war taxes anymore. During World War II, 85 million Americans purchased war bonds that brought the government $185 billion; in the last decade, we bought none and instead gave the richest 5 percent of Americans a tax break.
~ Peter W. Singer, author of “Wired for War: The Robotics Revolution and Conflict in the 21st Century”.
Citigroup Inc. (C)’s Vikram Pandit, leader of the U.S. bank that took the most government aid in the financial crisis and that has the worst stock performance over the past decade, is ready for a starring role at Davos.
Some of Pandit’s critics at home question whether he should take a bigger role at Davos given his bank’s underperformance. Shares in the lender, which received a $45 billion government bailout during the financial crisis, have plunged 94 percent in the past decade, the most of the 24 companies in the KBW Bank Index (BKX), and 91 percent since Pandit became CEO in 2007. “He should be spending more time on running his company better,” said Mike Mayo, an analyst with Credit Agricole Securities in New York who has an “underperform” rating on Citigroup’s stock.
“What kind of signal does that send that the bank that was the worst-performing in our country over the last decade and whose stock price is still down significantly since he took over is the ambassador for our financial industry?”
Just as France was being chastised for excessive national borrowing with a sovereign debt downgrade, thousands of lucky French people had their financial obligations forgiven after the country’s oldest bank decided to simply wipe their slate clean.
The good doctor’s idea was to give the poor people of Paris loans they could reasonably hope to repay, at decent rates for the time (about 10 percent annually) against whatever collateral they could produce: pots and pans, linens, silverware, artisans’ tools. Halay found evidence of a 19th-century woman so destitute her only possession was her mattress. Every morning, she would carry it to the bank and pawn it. With that money, she’d buy potatoes, sell them for a profit during the day and buy back her mattress at night.
Today, the bank stores more than a million objects, from the puny piece of jewelry to the grand masterpiece, in headquarters covering a city block in the historical center of Paris. With a capitalization of 60 million euros, the bank had 93 million euros in pawn-broking loans outstanding in 2010. Its 2010 profit of 1.3 million euros was partly assigned to improving shelters for the homeless.
“One ought not to feel surprise that the 99% call only for a reform of capitalism and not for an end to capital. They exist in a not-so-secret complicity with the 1% that they pretend to revile. Together, the 1% and the 99% constitute 100% of those assimilated within social representation. The material interests of the 99% force the group to support the democratic process. Electoral democracy is a phenomenon indistinguishable from capitalism, while direct democracy and economic democracy are nonsensical terms. The 1% and the 99% make up “society” as a whole and they need each other.”—http://occupyeverything.org/2012/zero-percent/
"According to the data, the School Safety Division arrested, on average, more than one student a day and issued summonses to approximately three students each day. Overall, the School Safety Division made 63 arrests and issued 182 summonses in the reporting period, which includes only 43 school days for middle school students and 50 school days for high school students, two-thirds of which occurred during summer school." [Read]
"In Afghanistan it was as if time had gone backwards, but now a power had arisen in this land which wanted to drag the people out of their superstition, to give children the chance to go to school, women the opportunity to see the world directly, instead of through the eye slits of the chador. Was that not a revolution? The battle of the future against a past already condemned?" ~ Vladimir Snegirev, Soviet youth advisor [Read]
On the fringe of London’s wealthy financial district, a four-storey building owned by one of the world’s largest companies has found an unlikely new purpose. 5-29 Sun Street, an office block owned by Swiss financial services giant UBS, was ‘repossessed’ last month [18 November 2011] by protesters part of the anti-corporate greed Occupy movement. Offering the opportunity to “trade in creativity rather than cash,” it is now bustling with art workshops and discussion groups focusing on everything from squatters’ rights to economic trade policy. ~ Ryan Gallagher, Bank of Ideas
The Journal for Occupied Studies is an independent contribution to the global Occupy movement, one which springs from the New School for Social Research in New York City but which fills its pages not only with student and faculty perspectives on Occupy Wall Street but with contributions from diverse individuals outside that university and indeed outside the USA. The JOS operates for the radicalisation of this struggle, at the place between past and future, theory and praxis. We hope the analyses and testimonies it offers valorize, prolong, and intensify this fight, which did not begin with the ‘American Fall’, and will not end with the decline of the call to ‘Occupy!’ specifically. The editors of JOS intend the term ‘occupied studies’ to piggyback upon the moment conjured by the word, or hash-tag, #occupy, whilst simultaneously raising the question of our continuing situation as occupied bodies, yet to wrest control of public space from the guardians of capital. Yes, documenting the thought/action of the ‘occupied’, it is hoped, foments the occupation(s) still to come.