Well, I suppose this beats the Orwellian fiscal process in Zuccotti Park on the other coast, but in its own way, Occupy Oakland’s actions are at least as Orwellian in hypocrisy. First they smash the windows out and deface signage at Wells Fargo while screaming about the big banks and corporatism, and then … they patronize the exact same bank:
Last week, one or more Occupy Oakland protesters smashed the windows of a Wells Fargo branch.
This week, the group’s general assembly agreed — in a near-unanimous vote Monday — to temporarily place $20,000 of the group’s money in an account at the country’s fourth-largest bank holding company, Wells Fargo Bank.
Whether the decision was an abandonment of the movement’s opposition to big banks or an ominous affirmation of the hold that big banks have on Americans, Twitter was ablaze with outrage last night, as news spread about the 162-8 vote, from which 16 people abstained.
“I am so disgusted right now. the hypocrisy of it all is just amazing,” wrote @GiveMeThatJuice.
“ARE YOU F—— SERIOUS?!,” wrote @graceface.
“I can see the ad now: ‘People’s money is so safe here at Wells Fargo, even our sworn enemies use us for their banking needs!’” wrote @davidcolburn.
That would be an awesome ad. Wells Fargo is already on it, by the way, putting out a statement that brags that the deposit “demonstrates that even Occupy Oakland understands — firsthand — the value and service that Wells Fargo provides its customers,” and that the bank “welcomes the 100 percent of Americans[.]”
Why didn’t Occupy Oakland put the money in a credit union, which Occupiers cite as an alternative, co-op model to banks like Wells Fargo? Apparently, the credit union wasn’t as convenient. They have to file paperwork as an unincorporated association first, and then file the paperwork with the credit union for approval, which will take a couple of weeks, the San Francisco Examiner reports. In the meantime, the Occupiers need somewhere to put the cash. Why not just hang onto it? Er … have you seen Occupy Oakland in action? Obviously, even the Occupiers don’t trust their compatriots at the figurative (or sometimes literal) barricades.
Speaking of which, the New York Times has breaking news today about the Occupy Movement in its own back yard. Did you hear that crime may be taking place there?
The arrest of a Crown Heights man last week on charges of sexually assaulting a protester at Zuccotti Park added to an already raucous public discussion of lawlessness at the site, where a revolving group of demonstrators has been camped for nearly eight weeks. Stories of crimes and dangerous behavior, mostly anecdotal, have been used as fuel by those who say the protesters must go. …
To increase the sense of safety for female protesters, the activists have set up a large women’s-only tent on the south side of the park. In addition, there are plans to construct a tent for transgender protesters. But some demonstrators are still concerned. Nate Barchus, a facilitator of the lesbian, gay, transgender and bisexual group, said he knew of 28 protesters — 12 of them transgender and the rest women — who had left the site in recent days because they feared for their safety.
“Mostly anecdotal”? Well, sure, but aren’t most crime reports “anecdotal” in nature? One would have to do a study on crime to get a data series as opposed to “anecdotal” evidence. Even complaints sworn out are “anecdotal.” Eyewitness testimony is “anecdotal.” And the womens-only tent wasn’t based on vague “fears” and “sense” of security. They set up that tent in response to attacks from sexual predators, news that the New York Post reported last week.
Meanwhile, the opportunity for sociologists to conduct such research in Zuccotti Park continues, although one probably wouldn’t find any counterintuitive conclusions:
Meanwhile, the park has divided into neighborhoods of sorts, with the western edge along Church Street considered the wrong side of the tracks. “The anarchists are over there,” said another police official, who was standing on Broadway and nodding toward the other side of the park. “And the political science grads are up here.” Mr. Burke and other protesters acknowledged this divide, saying some people with drug problems had congregated near Church Street, which is also where the drummers play.
Denver Mayor Michael Hancock insisted that his city’s occupation name a leader in order “to deal with City and State officials.” And he got his wish! Occupy Denver has elected Shelby, a border collie, as its leader. Long live Shelby!
Shelby, on whose noble visage you can gaze here, was elected in a “landslide vote” on Sunday night. One of Occupy Denver’s organizers, Al Nesby, was inspired to nominate Shelby to the position after the director Michael Moore showed up one day and rubbed him the wrong way by refusing to follow general assembly rules; with Shelby, who’s three and a half, the occupation should have no such problems.
Mark Krikorian quips, “At least she’ll have fewer lice than the humans.” True, but it does give a whole new meaning to the term fleabaggers, doesn’t it? It also means that some animals really are more equal than others. I’m sure that Coloradans will take the Occupiers seriously now. If this sounds familiar, it might be from another camp in Colorado, or at least in South Park (WARNING: Definitely not safe for work):