Friday, March 27, 2015

Fox’s “Nightmare on Wall Street” and police crackdown

About a week ago Fox News did a report based on a reporter that stayed at Occupy Wall Street and had what they called a “Nightmare on Wall Street.” The report said that she was investigating possible sex crimes which have been reported at the Occupy Wall Street Movement.

(This was originally posted on Open Salon November, 17, 2011)

She highlighted one girl who she met and told about how she had reported being sexual harassed. They showed a picture of this girl and she had her hair dyed purple, the type of style that many conservative viewers might look down on. They were presumably trying to portray her as both the victim and someone who partially brought this down on herself. This doesn’t mean they said it this way; however it was clearly the type of impression they were trying to give the viewers. I was not able to find an on line article on this interview but apparently the reports of problems with sexual abuse probably are true although they may be taken out of context, which would be typical of Fox News. An article by Fox News, Occupy Protests Plagued by Reports of Sex Attacks, Violent Crime, does cover some reports of sexual abuse at the protests; but they’re definitely declining to investigate further to find out the true reasons behind this problem with sexual harassment and find out whether it is any more or less of a problem in the protest camps than it is anywhere else, including in corporate offices and the National Restaurant Association when people with a lot of political power often abuse it; this is actually as common if not more common but it is harder to investigate and they often don’t even want to do so.

In fact they never do; instead they spend much more time covering these events by using demagoguery to demonize those that are allegedly to blame without consulting with any of the more credible sources that could do more to explain how to stop these problems; other traditional media outlets aren’t much if any better although their hype isn’t quite as obvious. This involves abuse that often starts as a child and escalates throughout life as many good researchers have found out but you won’t hear that from the Mass Media, the political establishment or the people in the business community that often interfere with the academic work that is presented to the public when it interferes with their ideological agenda or beliefs.

If you want to find this academic work it will be necessary to know where to look for it in the right library shelves where they’re often mixed up with more of the bad academic work that reflects the ideology of the traditional establishment. Researchers like Murray Straus, Philip Garbarino, Alice Miller, Philip Greven and many others are much less likely to get much if any air time than incompetent demagogues that pretend to have expertise like Dr. Phil and Dr. Drew. This essentially means that the Mass Media is actually partially responsible for these problems since they have neglected to do there part to educate the public and even used demagoguery to promote false ideas. I don’t know what all the protestors are objecting to, exactly, but I have no doubt that many of them are far more concerned about addressing the social problems that lead to this type of violence than the establishment is. The evidence for this is quite simple, actually; if the establishment was sincere about solving these problems they would have done much more to do so by now! The research is available in any good library for those that know what to look for and the establishment has as good if not better access to the advice of the most credible academic researchers that have come up with the best work; yet they chose to ignore them and side with the economic interests and ignore anything that contradicts their ideology even if it is blatantly flawed.

They put a lot of emphasis on the fact that they have some separate tents for woman so that they can protect them from potential sexual assault but like the fact that they don’t compare this to whether they do this in many other locations; in fact without even investigating I can tell you that they do and at times when it suits their purposes conservative news outlets have criticized it. The truth of the matter is that this isn’t even very good propaganda; it is only adequate enough to fool the most devout followers that have been thoroughly indoctrinated so as indicated in the previous post about Occupy Wall Street “Kool-Aid” anyone I see no reason to spend to much time debunking their claim; especially when many others have already done so and when trying to google for this interview instead of finding it I found more articles about What Fox News won't show you and Is Occupy Wall Street Fox News' worst nightmare? the same goes for other similar right wing arguments like Freedom Works that ask to reject Occupy Wall Street's Antisemitism; presumably they’re referring to the objections to excesses that have been committed by Israel while clamping down on the Palestinians which is often equated with Neo-Nazi Anti-Semitism even though these complaints are based on accurate reporting in many cases.

Unfortunately, in my opinion many of the efforts to debunk Fox News seem to be relying on Elizabeth Warren to make their case for them. As I indicated when I wrote about, How sincere Elizabeth Warren is, I’m not as certain as many other people are that she is such a credible defender of consumer rights. The previous blog indicates why I believe she isn’t doing many of the things a true reform candidate would and should do including trying to reel in the excess of money in the system and doing a better job telling the public what her plans are and implementing election reform; instead she is making many of the same appeals to emotions that other candidates have done and she is continuing to rely on the usual thirty second ads and other tactics to get elected that don’t involve much if any explaining of her agenda. She’s clearly better than Scott Brown but that shouldn’t be good enough. There is a good case to be made against Fox News and some of what Elizabeth Warren says is worthwhile and will stand on its own merits but she probably shouldn’t be relied on to solve all the problems.

However, by mixing in an enormous amount of conflicting information and doing things as fast as possible, they help to confuse the issue and attempt to justify the clampdown on Occupy Wall Street. In addition to using the claims that there are sexual abuses in the camp they’re also using the excuse that there are other violent incidents near some of the protests. One of the biggest examples of this was the clamp down in Oakland which was allegedly done partially because of a shooting incident nearby which the Mainstream Media either claims that it is unrelated or they claim that they don’t know whether or not it is related but they would be batter safe than sorry. When I heard this I wondered about whether or not this was typical of the murder rate in a big city which often have a lot of murders in a variety of places but the Mainstream Media didn’t make any attempt to report the statistics on this or find out what the root cause of this wer anymore than they attempted to find out whether the attempted rapes in the Occupy Camps were more or less than anywhere else. Fortunately, right here at Open Salon Kevin Army did report on this in “The Second Occupy Oakland Raid, and The Campaign Of Fear;” he reported that there were 91 murders so far this year and that this one isn’t related to the Occupy Wall Street movement; and he indicated that they should focus on reducing the crime rate over all more than clamping down on peaceful protests.

In fact although there are some cases where a small percentage of protestors have gotten out of control the majority of the violence clearly seems to come from the police. Even in the cases where some have gotten out of control it is not without some partial justification, although their tactics are counterproductive; but the Mass Media doesn’t report that instead they use it to distract the public and demonize the protests. One of the most extreme cases was in Portland Oregon where they pepper sprayed Dorli Rainey, an Eighty four year old woman, along with the rest of the crowd. They claimed they were only pepper spraying those that disobeyed lawful orders but they were pepper spraying the entire crowd according to video of this incident that was shown on TV and the Constitution gives the public the right to protest; therefore the corrupt politicians and judges that authorized these “lawful orders” were in violation of the Constitution and they weren’t actually lawful at all. This is typical of the way they’re dealing with these protests; they come in with an enormous amount of police heavily armored and shielded to suppress the public with force looking like Storm Troopers.

This may seem like an extreme term but when you consider the fact that they corporations are involved in an enormous amount of consumer fraud that involves stealing billions if not trillions from the public and the government and nothing is done and on top of that they’re destroying the environment and corrupting the government and arranging for the orders to clamp down the use of the term Storm Troopers seems appropriate. They’re apparently just blindly following orders with little or no thought about what they’re doing or why which is what the Storm Troopers are programmed to do. If they thought about what they’re doing they might consider the fact that this is supposed to be a democracy and that means that they’re supposed to work for the public. The politicians are just supposed to be the representatives of the public doing the will of the public but thanks to the corrupt system they’re just doing the will of the corporations and it isn’t democracy at all.

Also one excuse, cleaning and sanitation, that they use to vacate many of the parks including Zuccotti Park is just a variation of tactics that they’ve been using for at least a hundred years although it may not seem quite so extreme at first glance. For one example consider the following excerpt from Howard Zinn’s “A People’s History of the United States.”

On February 10, over a hundred children, aged four to fourteen, left Lawrence for New York City. They were greeted at Grand Central Station by five thousand Italian Socialists singing the "Marseillaise" and the "International." The following week, another hundred children came to New York, and thirty-five to Barre, Vermont. It was becoming clear: if the children were taken care of, the strikers could stay out, for their spirit was high. The city officials in Lawrence, citing a statute on child neglect, said no more children would he permitted to leave Lawrence.

Despite the city edict, a group of forty children assembled on February 24 to go to Philadelphia. The railroad station was filled with police, and the scene that followed was described to Congressmen by a member of the Women's Committee of Philadelphia:

When the time approached to depart, the children arranged in a long line, two by two, in orderly procession, with their parents near at hand, were about to make their way to the train when the police closed in on us with their clubs, beating right and left, with no thought of children, who were in the most desperate danger of being trampled to death. The mothers and children were thus hurled in a mass and bodily dragged to a military truck, and even then clubbed, irrespective of the cries of the panic-stricken women and children....

A week after that, women returning from a meeting were surrounded by police and clubbed; one pregnant woman was carried unconscious to a hospital and gave birth to a dead child. Source: Howard Zinn: "A People's History of the United States: 1492 to Present (P.S.)" 2005

A hundred years ago they didn’t become concerned about “child neglect” until they thought they could use this as a justification to break the strikes. The establishment wasn’t concerned about child neglect when they allowed long hours in sweat shops which were still common at that time nor were they concerned about it when they provided little or no educational opportunities for the children or as noted when clamping down and enforcing this order involved abusing woman and children.

Today they’re claiming about they’re concerned about sanitation despite the fact that when they used this concern in the past the protestors went to great lengths to clean up the park. They also complain about violence related to the protest but as indicated before they do little or nothing to address the root causes of the protests. There are many more examples that I could cite but perhaps the most important one in comparison to the past protests cited by Zinn is the fact that they finally managed to implement child protection laws as a result of those protests; now one of the things that the protestors are objecting to is the fact that some governors are trying to overturn those protections including in Maine where they’re trying to eliminate laws that protect children from being abused in the workplace.

Another thing that is worth considering is the fact that the timing of this latest wave of clamp downs is very close to the upcoming deadline for the Super Committee Report which is due November 23. The Super Committee was made up of the usual politicians that represent the same special interests that got us into this mess. They seem to have the same objectives as those that attempted to pass legislation to resolve the issue but failed due to bickering. If the way this has been handled in the past is any indication of the way they handle it when the report comes out then there is little or no reason to believe that they will do much if anything to solve the problem. The political establishment seems to be unwilling or able to acknowledge the fact that the reason they got into this mess is because of the incredible amounts of corporate corruption going on; the enormous amount of wars based on lies and corruption within the military; and the irrational fiscal ideologies that result in an enormous amount of incompetence including planned obsolescence, reduction in manufacturing expenses while advertising goes through the roof, price fixing and many other issues.

Instead they’re trying to indicate that the so called “entitlements,” including social security, that benefit the majority of the public are at fault. This seems to imply that these are unearned entitlements which is false. These entitlements have been earned and paid for with payroll deductions. The real unearned entitlements are the corporate welfare bailouts or regulations that enable the corporations to conduct consumer fraud in secrecy due to proprietary information laws which are by definition a conspiracy; they’re designed to ensure that the only people who have the information they need to make decisions are the corporations not consumers or workers.(For more information on Blog see Blog description and table of context for most older posts.)

The following are the original replies when this was first posted on Open Salon.

Let's face it, we've got about as much right to protest as Iranians do.

Sean Fenley November 17, 2011 03:24 PM

great points - it is nice to see posts like yours!

Snowden November 17, 2011 10:08 PM

If Bloomberg etal have their way then we will have as much right to post as the Iranians; however in order to enforce their corrupt rule they have to have the obedience of the American people or they have to have cops that are willing to escalate to the degree of a Stalin-like purge. I don't think they'll get that; hence I think it will result in reform to some degree. How much depends on how well educated the public becomes and how active.

Thanks for replying all.

zacherydtaylor November 18, 2011 09:26 AM

Just goes to show you protesting is never easy.

Algis Kemezys November 20, 2011 06:34 AM

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