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Sunday, November 20, 2011

OWS Needs Demands

I have been thinking a lot about the Occupy Wall Street movement.
I understand the core grievances of the people who are participating.
I understand the core causes of what led the economy to generate enough momentum for those people to accumulate at ever-increasing numbers.
I understand the feelings of fear and hatred that the movement is generating among others.
I see the current situation as INCREDIBLY dangerous.
It is dangerous for the participants.
It is dangerous for the "1%."
It is dangerous for the police.
It is dangerous because each incident of police brutality adds more pressure to the situation.
Each incident of peacefully gathered protesters being abused, assaulted, brutalized and injured by the police is causing more and more anger from the population over the situation. It WILL lead to more violence. History has shown MANY examples where military force being used on the civilian population (and make no mistake in judgment; the type of police tactics being deployed warrants calling them a military force) leading to violence against the ruling individuals and the military force supporting them. In previous posts I have cited many examples where economic forces pushed the poor majority to violently overthrow the rich minority. Almost all of those examples included the abuse of power by a domestic police/military force against the civilian population in an effort to stop the revolution. In addition to those examples there are also the recent examples of Egypt and Libya and, slightly less recently, the civilian over-throw of Saddam Hussein in Iraq. Oppressing the civilian population does NOT work as a lasting solution.
In many countries it can work for generations, but it most likely will NOT work in this country.
This country's founding concepts are being violated by the police occupation of our rights and we won't put up with it. Unlike the other countries who survived for generations under a totalitarian regime this country has tasted freedom and will not surrender it to a military rule easily.
Continuing this course of action WILL result in an eventual flashpoint where the peaceful protesters suddenly convert into an angry and vengeful mob. When that happens ANY police officer on the streets will die. They will die horribly. They will, literally, be ripped apart and/or beaten to death with whatever is available. No number of firearms, pepper spray, mace, batons, non-lethal projectiles, tear gas, etc will stop an angry and driven mob from doing it will do. Each effort of defense by the police will drive the overall mob onward. The fatalities among the protesters will greatly outnumber those of the police, but ALL of the police will die. The numbers are too great in favor of the protesters and each and every police officer that succumbs to the violence will provide weapons to make the mob more efficient.
 Make no mistake in judgment here.
We are on the precipice of the most dangerous situation this country has faced in nearly a century. One event like the Kent State University catastrophe will ignore a wildfire among the entire population. People across the country will know what is happening before it is done happening. The slaughter there will spark a huge blow-back on the local force that committed the atrocity AND decrease the tolerance level in every other "OWS" protest around the country.
When the first locale falls the rest will go like dominoes.

 I see only one way out of this situation. The OWS movement needs to organize. It needs to generate a list of rules and a means of generating order amongst its encampments. Most importantly it needs to generate a list of goals and demands that can be accomplished. Without all of these points NOTHING will get done. NOTHING productive will happen.
Without all of these items being put in place the entire movement will only serve to destabilize the entire country (and world) with no benefit for anyone.

If I were in charge of the OWS movement these are the demands I would start with.
I would have EVERYONE publish them and memorize them.
I would deliver them through any channel available to any authority figure available.

1. Restitution for police brutality.

  • A. Each and every police officer who committed ANY act of violence against a protester be investigated. Their act(s) reviews and any/all evidence of their act(s) be evaluated by a neutral jury of people who know neither the officer nor the victim(s) of the act(s). Each and every act deemed to exceed acceptable force for the situation will be stripped of the protection of being an act conducted by an active-duty police officer enforcing the law. Each act stripped of that protection will then be tried in a court of law as though the offending party were one citizen assaulting another with no cause. Any/all penalties of law that could be applied to a conventional citizen who committed the same acts shall be applied to the police officer as though they were such a normal citizen. Any officer whose action(s) are deemed to be appropriate to their duties and situation shall retain the exemption and protection against assault/battery/etc based on their active performance of their duties. 
  • B. Any officer who commanded officers to perform acts that were deemed outside the acceptable actions for the situation (as stated above) shall be tried on a conspiracy charge and stripped of the ability to EVER hold a police force, military force or security position for the remainder of their lives. 
  •  C. Any officers who were present who are documented to be standing by without making any attempt to stop the brutality (as outlined in section A) shall be discharged from the current police force without any continuing benefit of having served. They may be eligible for police, military or security positions if any police organization is willing to hire them. 
 2. Corporate Citizenship

  • A. Corporations are NOT citizens. There is no accountability if a corporation misbehaves. Legislation shall be drafted that makes all "chief" level officers and all vice-president level officers and all members of a board PERSONALLY liable for actions conducted by a corporation. In the event that there is a dissenting minority vote all those who submit, in writing, a dissenting opinion to the HR department of the corporation AND to the Attorney General of the applicable geographic region shall be exempted from legal penalty. All those who do NOT dissent in the corporation conducting illegal actions shall be considered equally liable for the damages caused. The corporation itself shall be responsible for repaying any and all damages resulting from the illegal actions and the parties being held PERSONALLY responsible shall be responsible for submitting payments to cover the jury-awarded "pain and suffering" that the illegal actions generated. In addition, those held PERSONALLY responsible will be tried for any criminal offenses that the company has brought against it AND they shall be discharged from the employment of the company. Additionally, they shall be barred from EVERY holding an officership / board position on corporation for the remainder of their lives (after they complete their prison sentences). 
  •  B. Corporations cannot be considered a person for legal purposes. 
3. Separation of Church, State and Corporation

  • A. No political campaign or office shall be able to accept ANY donation from any non-person.
  • B. No single source can contribute more than 1% of any political campaign fund. 
  • C. No corporation may submit any legislation request for consideration; corporations are limited to filing formal protests against legislation being enacted that may damage their business model or customer base. 
  • D. Politicians shall be required to present an analysis of how any legislation or decision they are making shall affect their constituents directly. 
4. Lobbying Reform

  • A. Each and every politician shall be required to conduct a poll of random constituents for each and every legal issue to generate a baseline of opinion. 
  • B. No politician shall be allowed to entertain speakers speaking on the behalf of a non-person. The behalf of shall be determined by the funding of the speaker. Investigation of indirect funding channels shall be allowed. 
  • C. Non-person entities shall be permitted to present their opposition or support of proposed legislation ONLY in the public hearings. 
5. Reparations

  • A. Investigations shall be conducted into the causes of the economic collapse leading to the OWS movement. 
  • B. Those found to be responsible shall be indicted for their actions in the same manner that those who caused economic turmoil in previous economically hard times were indicted and tried for their role in the damage. 
  • C. Politicians shall not be exempted from the investigations. 
6. Transparency and equality

  • A. ALL publicly-funded budgets shall be EASILY and readily available by any citizen for review. 
  • B. ALL publicly-funded programs shall make use of the same non-salary compensation programs available to every private entity. 
  • C. ALL political offices shall be paid ONLY while the politician is serving. There is no post-serving compensation. 
  • D. Non-salary benefits for those serving in political office shall be similar to the constituents that they serve (e.g. no special health care programs or retirement planning). 
  • E. Public servants shall NOT be eligible for bonuses. 
  • F. Public servants are not eligible to receive gifts of any sort that may be affiliated with their position from any source. 
7. Compensation

  • A. There shall be enacted a limit to the salary that the highest-paid executive may earn within a company. That limit shall be based on the comparator between highest-paid employee and lowest-paid employee in all developed nations. Any highest-paid employee within a corporation shall not exceed the pay of the lowest-paid employee by more than the ratio found at the 67th percentile of the developed nations comparison chart. 
  • B. There shall be no cap on the performance-based incentives that a company wishes to bestow on any employee so long as the performance-based pay incentives operate in both a positive and negative direction. 
  • C. Corporations shall have complete employee termination powers of any employee found to be using the company resources or acting on behalf of the company in an illegal manner. The employer found to be acting in an illegal manner (as determined by a court of law) shall have NO RECOURSE (even if they had a contract) against the company. This includes executives. In the event that an employee is terminated for illegal actions (as determined in a court of law) their severance package shall be used to mitigate the damages awards from the court case and/or applied to the charity that is selected by the wronged parties. 
This is an extremely rough draft. I am sure there are plenty of edits and refinements that are needed. But it is a starting point for the things that could be asked for by the OWS movement.
If these items were started and finished the OWS movement would fade away into the non-existent state that it had prior to the first mobilization.
Enacting something similar to the set of demands above would be the fastest way to avoid a nation-wide civilian uprising.
I hope someone manages to put something together similar to this soon.
I welcome any comments.

Note: edited for formatting 5/5/17 (formatting issues discovered 5/4/17). Content unchanged.