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Saturday, November 12, 2011 I've reported on the Saturday weekly march, and they tackled the issue of Constitutional Rights. We've marched for those rights to be kept with us. I've reported for Denver Open Media. D.O.M. is a television and video production non-profit organization, and we've got channels on Comcast (channel 56, 57 and 219). I've shot the video, got interviews, videotaped my own standup for when I did my closing remarks, and pieced the story together on Final Cut Pro video editing software; I did it all by myself. I'm what they call a one-man band reporter. Watch the YouTube video of my report - http://bit.ly/srQ3KI
Reporting Back from the Big Ol’ Elf Revolt
This past Saturday, D17, a gaggle (or herd? maybe a swarm?) of radical elves took to the streets of Denver, united in their desires for liberation from the cruel, exploitative hand of the “free” market. The system of capitalism in which these elves have been laboring has concentrated mass amounts of profit and power (both material and ideological power) into the big fat lap of Santa. Santa, in all of his greed to amass more and more capital, has done so on the back of poor working elves all over the globe, from the North to the South Poles. All elves are targeted and affected in some way by the social and economic system, which mandates their need to sell their labor, while not benefiting elves in any way from the perverse machinations of capitalism. Yet all elves are not targeted or affected in the same way. We must acknowledge the differential impact upon elves of color, indigenous elves, elves in the global South Pole, women elves, trans elves, and queer elves. We elves also know that our reindeer comrades and our homelands (our pristine forests and mountains and rivers) are contaminated, subjugated, and decimated every day by the never-ending hunger of capitalism.
What a beautiful Day i thought as I walked from my car to the park to cover the rally. It was brisk, cool, but sunny and I felt refreshed as I approached the Occupy protesters. I reflected upon the article I read in the Denver Post – such a right wing rag really, though to right wingers they would think the thought crazy; but what do you expect from people who do not read or even understand simple concepts, like socialism, or left wing – about the new police chief meeting the demonstrators and telling them that all “encumbrances to the side walk must come down.”
I had yet to talk to any one about it at occupy but the thought made me laugh, boy he (the new police chief) and Hickenlooper and the Mayor must really be out of touch I thought as I walked up. They do not understand how angry many people are.
What did I see before me as I approached? More “encumbrances” then where there when the new police chief spoke to the movements leaders. I smiled. Some where of cardboard and others appeared to be of cardboard but upon closer inspection where reenforced with wood to make removal more difficult. This made me happy, as all civil disobedience does against an unjust system.
Over the past few months, Denver ABC has devoted a tremendous amount of resources and energy into Occupy Denver. Our collective has staffed a 24/7 legal line, coordinated the bailing out of almost one hundred demonstrators arrested over the last two months, and onsite CopWatch and Street Medics. We’ve made an earnest and largely successful effort to get supporters into the courtrooms for nearly every hearing and court appearance featuring our arrested comrades. All this has been juggled with attending the weekly marches and adding our spirit to the marches and General Assemblies as one portion of the 99%.
As of December 4th, our collective has decided to no longer support Occupy Denver. This means we will not be providing our legal line for Occupy actions; fundraising for the movement; encouraging our members, friends and allies to get involved; as well as serve roles such as CopWatch and Medics. This is in solidarity and coordination with other ally formations such as West Denver CopWatch and the Colorado Street Medics.
We want to be clear that our decision is not based on a generalized, absolute rejection of everyone involved in Occupy Denver. We are grateful for many relationships of solidarity that we have made through our work with OD and are confident those relationship will continue to blossom. Our commitments to the OD arrestees that we have been supporting still remain as well.
Our decision is based on festering frustrations with a small sector of OD who continue to marginalize, silence, and threaten our communities and ally communities. Despite the hard work of many involved in OD, its political platform continues to be framed by and for economically privileged, hyper-nationalist white heterosexual males. Experiences of race, gender, class, nationality, immigration status, and a multitude of other identities continue to be buried underneath the dominant “We are the 99%” narrative.
More than a month after the DPD raid on the squat at 27th and Bryant, one part of the story has still not been told. The cops were clearly a bunch of scumbags in what they did, along with the courts that were, until recently planning to prosecute people with FELONY burglary charges. But neither entity would have been able to do what they did legally without the go ahead from the property's owner... and he's a piece of work himself.
Occupy Denver Meets the Winter by Phillip Reynes
It was cold and snowing as I drove downtown to the capital. When I say cold I mean bitter cold and when I say snowing the word dumping comes to mind. Thank goodness it let up just as I parked. I was cold as I walked to the park from the place I parked all the while wondering what the turnout would be for the rally and march. The turnout was small but considering the weather it is what I expected.
Despite the weather some had stayed all night sleeping on the sidewalk and covered only by a tarp atop their sleeping bags. You know they had to have had a very hard night.
One group of three people sat meditating and I loved their sign as well as their discipline. They sat in the meditative sense for over an hour, unmoving, still, calm: all the while their sign made their point “Occupy the Moment.”
Tea party types where in the crowd as well as their affiliates – you know the ones, the free market ideologue who think capitalism is some sort of divine religion – spouting their usual bull shit about rent taking and small government as well as their revisionist interpretation of the constitution.
Saturday, December 31 at 11:30pm - Sunday, January 1, 2012 at 1:00am
Outside & inside La Plata County Jail (Durango, CO)
742 Turner Drive
(Not in or near La Plata County? Organize NYE noise demos outside prisons, jails, and detention centers in your area!)
Join us in making a ruckus outside (and inside!) La Plata County Jail in Durango, CO this coming New Year's Eve (& *every* NYE!).
This easy, safe, and simple expression of solidarity can have amazing positive impact for those behind and inside the walls and bars of the incarceration system. Let's make some noise and let them know that they're not alone and not forgotten.
(Note: Remaining on public property for a noise demo outside a prison, jail, or detention center is perfectly legal. As long as participants remain on public property, they are not placing themselves at legal risk.)
Bring noise makers, drums, instruments, sound systems, your voice, your friends, your family, your lovers, and your indomitable spirit of resistance.
This event, which we hope to make a yearly event in our community, is inspired by the North American call out for a day of action against prisons in the New Year of 2011, which remains relevant unchanged:
Noise demos outside of prisons in some countries are a continuing tradition. A way of expressing solidarity for people imprisoned during the New Year, remembering those held captive by the state. A noise demo breaks the isolation and alienation of the cells our enemies create, but it does not have to stop at that.
ARMY SETS PRE-TRIAL HEARING DATE FOR BRADLEY. VIGILS AND RALLIES PLANNED AT FORT MEADE MD, WORLDWIDE.
Solidarity Rally in Durango. Saturday, December 17th, 2011. 1PM. 11th St. & Main Ave.
The United States Army has scheduled an Article 32 pretrial hearing for PFC Bradley Manning, the Army intelligence specialist accused of releasing classified material to WikiLeaks. The pretrial hearing will commence on December 16 at Fort Meade, Maryland.
This will be PFC Manning’s first appearance before a court and the first time he will face his accusers after 17 months in confinement. In a blog post this morning, Manning’s lead counsel, David Coombs, notified supporters that the pretrial phase is scheduled to last five days.
Here is the full text of his update:
“The Article 32 hearing for PFC Bradley Manning will begin on December 16, 2011 at Fort Meade, Maryland. The hearing is expected to last approximately five days. With the exception of those limited times where classified information is being discussed, the hearing will be open to the public.
The primary purpose of the Article 32 hearing is to evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of the government’s case as well as to provide the defense with an opportunity to obtain pretrial discovery. The defense is entitled to call witnesses during the hearing and to also cross examine the government’s witnesses. Each witness who testifies is placed under oath; their testimony can therefore be used during the trial for impeachment purposes or as prior testimony should the witness become unavailable.
The Tea Party-associated group “Free Markets, Free People” will be at Occupy Denver this Saturday. We need to have a strong presence to stand up to their lies. Market capitalism isn’t in crisis; market capitalism IS crisis. Capitalism oppresses queers, women, people of color, and of course the working class. So all you socialists, communists, autonomists, anarchists and radicals of every sort, be at Occupy Denver on Saturday. Bring your bodies, your signs, and your chanting voices! A! Anti! Anti-Capitalista!
Love and solidarity,
some north Denver radical queers
Newspaper readership has been in steady decline over the past few decades. There are consequences. Today we have far fewer reportorial journalists. Fewer journalists are covering fewer newsworthy events. And fewer and fewer newspapers continue to print, while many that do have been merged into larger corporate conglomerates with imposed ideologies.
There have also been contingencies. Less reporting based journalism has reduced the amount of accurate, complete information available to the public. This it true in both scope and scale. The industry-wide transition from providing a public good to maximizing efficiency and profit has eroded the knowledge base of Americans. Today our news cycle is driven by argument and opinion rather than facts and public education. The result to society is a usurpation of political power, economic understanding, and societal reasoning capacity.
The Free Press clause of the First Amendment is a core human right. In the letter to Edward Carrington, Thomas Jefferson states that “the basis of our governments being the opinion of the people, the very first object should be to keep that right; and were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without newspapers, or newspapers without a government, I should not hesitate a moment to prefer the latter.” His notions stem from the people’s role as censors of the governors who, while subject to being led astray and prone to error, will right themselves and the governors through the presentation of full information provided by public newspapers.
As Thanksgiving and Black Friday (biggest day of shopping in the year) approach, and inequalities get put on more revolting parade than ever before, it's easy to feel like there's nothing you can do. That's why we're calling for a weekend of pranks, mischief, jokes, gags and action aimed at mockery of consumerism, commercialism, corporations, capitalism, and other bad words that begin with "c" (and the other 25 letters of the alphabet). Let your imaginations run wild! The possibilities are endless.
ALL THANKSGIVING WEEKEND! BRING YOUR CREATIVITY!
From Submedia.tv, included in the latest (s)edition of the Stimulator comes:
Occupy the Machine - Stop the 1%, Literally Our Bodies Will Be our Demand
Imagine if we could stop the 1%, literally, not symbolically. It's time to put our bodies between fossil fuels and what's left of the planet, while there's still time left.
The focus on financial inequality versus the devastation of the earth is a false split. The 1% would have no wealth to steal without exploiting humans AND without exploiting the land. Without the landbase no one has anything, not the 99% and not the 1%. How much will it matter if our homes are not foreclosed if the Earth is unlivable due to runaway climate change? There's only one home for all of us and we are almost done destroying it. Announcing, Occupy the Machine. We invite all occupiers to read the Occupy the Machine Open Letter, give feedback, and if you feel moved to do so, present it at an Occupy General Assembly or committee meeting near you.
http://deepgreenresistance.org/o... (Thanks Frank Lopez!)
Several hundred people marched from of Civic Center park and through downtown – down the 16th St mall and then back - Saturday afternoon. This was the eight Occupy Denver's eighth straight Saturday march of the Denver Occupy Movement.
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The marchers — this was one of the smaller of the weekend gatherings — was happy and energetic as it waited to leave the park.
Police officers were in patrol cars and on bikes throughout the park and on the march. There was the usual heavy and over the top presence that we have come to expect on the marches.
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Before leaving the park, demonstrators were urged to remain peaceful and reminded to respect fellow demonstrators who may be protesting a different idea. The croud had at least two demonstrators with signs mocking the movement to Occupy Denver. I had to wonder if they where police provocateurs personally if for no other reason then my memory of the Denver spy files.
Hello all our dear elf friends! Tired of Santa getting all the profit from our handiwork?
The holiday season is rapidly approaching and some of us elves couldn't help but think that with all this Occupy business happening across the U.S., maybe it was high time we occupy something ourselves! Santa has commodified and profited from our jolly nature and nimble hands long enough. So, we invite all of you to join your elven friends and comrades on December 17th, 2011 at 3PM in Hungarian Freedom Park (Speer & Downing) where will we gather and then proceed to march directly to where Santa resides next to the beating heart of capitalism and consumerism.
We're elves right? So bring your holiday spirit, magic, and mischievous nature!
Our demands are simple: Elves desire everything for everyone. We desire liberation. We will stop at nothing to gain it.
Occupy Wall Street has captured the imagination of the humans for the last two months. There have been moments of inspiring victory, like the General Strike in Oakland, and then moments of gut wrenching repression, like the lethally armed eviction of the Occupy squat in Chapel Hill. Victories and losses. Steps forwards and steps back. This is the nature of the social war for humans and elves alike. Our collective capacity to dream outside of our own alienation and commodification is awakening from a long slumber!
Capitalism is taking its dying breaths. These are the death rattles our fallen comrades dreamt of years ago.
For Immediate Release
November 13, 2011
Contact: Colorado Street Medics, firstname.lastname@example.org 303-570-9362
Denver Police Department officers clad in riot gear spray the crowd with fire extinguishers and pepper spray to clear Civic Center Park chasing demonstrators to the street
November 12, 2011: After riot police stormed Civic Center Park and chased protesters to other locations, one demonstrator was observed being struck by officers and falling motionless on the traffic median dividing Colfax at Broadway.
Colorado Street Medics immediately attempted to access this patient to assess and provide first aid. SWAT officers refused to allow the medics access to this patient. The officer commanding the line refused to acknowledge medics when they attempted to explain concerns for the unconscious, unresponsive patient.
Police allowed an untrained bystander access to the patient, but refused to allow medics from Colorado Street Medics to access the patient. Officers threatened Colorado Street Medic volunteers with arrest if they attempted to approach the patient. When asked for their name and badge number, the officers refused to provide this information stating, “We don’t have to. That is not the law.Colorado Street Medic volunteers attempted to explain concern for serious bodily injuries as the patient lay on the traffic
median unconscious and non-reactive to heavy traffic, bystanders and sirens around them. When SWAT officers pushed the medics away, Denver Paramedics had not yet arrived to treat the patient.
November 13, 2011
It’s 11:07 on a Sunday morning, and yet again the 27 Social Centre in Northwest Denver is full of people. Folks are talking to imprisoned comrades on the phone, coordinating with court observers who just left a long bond hearing for 20 arrestees, entering yet more names and case numbers into online databases, and trying to feed each other and take care of our kids.
Police have been rolling by slowly and regularly, in increasing regularity on the streets surrounding our building. We tend to get a lot of roll by cop traffic, but today definitely feels different. They drive really slow, eyeballing everyone and anyone coming or going, and their numbers only seem to be increasing.
Last night, 21 more folks from Occupy Denver were arrested. Crowds were pepper sprayed, shot with pepper balls and rubber “less-lethal” rounds, and beaten with batons and fists. Street medics treated many injuries (yet again) and our legal observers reported many gross attacks on individuals, some not even affiliated with the demonstrations.
It was a windy but otherwise beautiful day when I arrived at the occupy Denver sight before the march. There where only a few people there when I arrived but despite that tensions where running high as people argued about the chalk gratify that covered the sidewalks. Some of it was indeed offensive and even racist but this was only a small part of the gratify. The argument seemed to revolve around how much should be removed. The person doing the removal, a supposed occupy Denver person, decided that anti-police and pro-Marvin Booker slogans where offensive to and so, after much arguing and debate some of it heated, the erasure of the gratify was abandoned.
The debate seemed to follow the same old lines. One side is anti violence and defines that as no anti police insults, threats or resistance beyond following the systems rules. This side clearly believes in the system and thinks that what is going on can be corrected through the system and within the systems rules. The others side has given up on the system and while they do not want violence they also no longer the system we have today will be responsive. They eel the 1% and the law protect the rich and exploit the poor. They view capitalism as having taken over not just the economy but also the justice system, the education system. They do not believe the 1% will give up anything without a fight.
This later group, feels real pain. Education is out of reach financially as well as health care and they see their families and friend suffer from this as well as a justice system that is like a whore – meaning that if you have money you get off or at least a fair outcome and if you don't it's prison and fines and never having an opportunity to ever “pay your debt” and re-join society.
Ignite! #3 is finished, printed, and circulating Denver as scheduled. Including reports on Denver's rowdy O22 demonstration, a squat raid, more #OccupyDenver coverage than you can shake a stick at, local underground action communiques, and a piece on anti-fascism and freedom of speech. This issue is 16 pages which is way longer than we ever though Ignite! would be. Might have to switch to a bi-weekly format...
Big thanks to The Hammer for reviewing our second issue here. This is also the last issue that will look this shitty. We are learning and probably getting better. #4 is gonna look fly as fuck. Submission deadline, once again, is going to be the 28th. Get those texts and pictures to IgniteDenver@riseup.net for publication. Also, keep your eyes and ears peeled for a potential meeting in December to draw more people into the paper's creation.
I have been a part of Occupy Denver in some capacity since the week of the first GA. I am making this statement as an individual woman and participant, though I am a collective member of DABC. I want to be clear about the distinction there so there is no misinformation about what I have to say. I speak for myself and no one else.
“I will not have my life narrowed down. I will not bow down to somebody else's whim or to someone else's ignorance.” bell hooks
I have been the target of oppressive and patriarchal behaviors since I first entered the space of Occupy Denver. I have been pointed out and labeled as violent, though I have never even been involved in a physical confrontation with a participant or the police. I spoke out against the oppressive and aggressive behavior of one security guard/marshall and recommended that he be removed from those roles of power until he complete some kind of an accountability process. I was shut down as was anyone else who spoke against that individual, but more specifically the women who spoke out against him. This is only one example of the type of oppressive patriarchal behavior within #OD.
We have an enemy in our midst. We, who have been so willing to exhaust our time, energy, and resources, have been undermined by militant pacifists. We compromised, and continue to compromise, our homes and our jobs and our bodies for the sake of revolutionary possibilities, only to find those who belong to the cult of “nonviolence” ironically leading us to the guillotine. We have come to find out that the revolution will be televised, will be spun, will be manipulated, and will be spoon-fed to the very powers that we purport to be against. The treasonous and faceless laptop activists from Occupy Denver, also known as the PR/Media team, have taken it upon themselves to identify “violent” protestors from the events that transpired on October 29th of this year.
This day began with absolute beauty. We protested through the streets together, we danced together and we sang together. We saw old friends, met new friends, and together we momentarily shifted the power back to the people through our words and our love and our sick ass dance moves. Upon our return to Civic Center Park, we attempted to expand this “public space” by pitching tents together, when the violent arm of the state reared its ghastly head at all of us. Cops in riot gear stormed in with no notice, tearing our tents down. We reacted. We resisted. And for a very brief period, our words and our voices overpowered the 10 or so cops that we had engulfed in a circle of bodies.