National Park Service hands out “Eviction Notices” to both Occupy DC camps

What is great is that you don’t have to take my say-so for a single word.  No speculation required.  On the other hand, since when did park rangers create and serve eviction notices?  Where is the landlord-tenant court?  How do you contest the validity of a histrionic historical document?

Will some of them leave in a docile, law abiding way without trying to use either “the Courts” or the Court of public opinion?   The second photo is the police in Boston arresting everyone who did not leave on their own.  Then bulldozing their personal property.  Then scraping away the most vibrant place to go to free concerts and poetry readings in Boston.  Now, of course, no one goes there and the food trucks and restaurants aren’t doing anywhere near that business (and tourists don’t go to Dewey any more either).  Oh well.  Better to have order than vibrancy, not to mention having the head of the conservancy keep on pocketing her big big bucks.  Yay that.  Gotta say thanks to the Boston Herald on that one, ($165k salary plus $160 in bonuses isn’t bad) see:  http://www.bostonherald.com/news/regional/view.bg?articleid=1399125

But back to the Eviction of Occupy DC – If you are curious as to what the park service wants to do, or you  can call the National Park Rangers (aka police) at  202-610-7500 and say please don’t evict/arrest Occupiers.  Or you can call your congressman or senator.  Having a group of Americans expressing free speech in Washington, DC where they suffer from Taxation without Representation and able to march on congress or do sit ins at a moments notice on our behalf was a good thing, at least in my opinion.

After all, what if Occupy is the last, best chance for democracy, and for focusing on the State of the Nation.  That is far better than the silent, burgeoning siniser hidden profits of the crony-capitalists.  The march of philanthrocapitalist into the ranks of NGOs, and the exploding salaries of the elite leaders of these psuedo-charities has meant less and less of the donated or channeled taxpayer money goes to helping the bottom 10% or the animals in shelters, or protecting the environment (Thank you Nancy Brennan of the $165k salary and $160k bonus for all you have done to render the Greenway silent and sterile).  Occupy DC was also spotlighting THAT.  Those born into the 1%, and the climbers who can squirm their way into the elite via Harvard, Yale, Columbia, and carefully riding coat tails probably HATE being called out by Occupy DC.  So do the practitioners of The Way of the PAC.  Therefore, the “JOIN or DIE” refers, in this case, to the death of Democracy – we either Occupy our own present and fight for our own future, or democracy dies.

After all:

The Past is gone.

Tomorrow is a dream.

We Occupy only today.

You could say when President Obama was handed this notice by an active Occupier in Manchester, New Hampshire we were all served notice that democracy needs our autonomous and collective defense.

When Corporations are executed and the bankers who stole our money and committed massive fraud go to jail, and insider trading is illegal for elected senators, congressmen and their staff – AND Open Meeting Laws of some reasonable variety, and honest  audits of the books on Capitol Hill and Beacon Hill, and the Conservancy and other non-profits happen as part of business as usual, I  won’t need Occupy to protect the future left to my children.  Hasn’t happened yet.

Recommended by carl_offner, somervilletom.



Discuss

16 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. NPS seems to be suffering from split personality.

    I believe I read the other day that NPS official said in the same sentence that on the one hand the NPS should accomodate the Occupiers while on the other hand they are duty-bound to start moving them along. I also have to say I don’t share the hysteria some people have presented over regulating use of public land. Time, place, and manner have always been legitimate ways to manage speech, assembly etc. Other groups may want to hold their demonstrations and the public generally should expect to enjoy public land. I see nothing wrong with requiring permits and limiting the application of same so that everyone, not just the movement of the moment, has a chance to enjoy these resources of public space.

    • Hysteria

      “I also have to say I don’t share the hysteria some people have presented over regulating use of public land.”

      And I don’t share the idea that characterizing opposing ideas as “hysteria” is appropriate. Sexist connotations aside, it’s insulting, and in this case hyperbolic.

    • Will you walk docilely to your end?

      Sometimes I have the feeling that you, like so many German Jews of the 1930s, will walk docilely to your end so long as the government official is well-dressed, soft-spoken, and obeying the law of the land. Many German Jews walked peaceably to their death telling their neighbors and loved ones that “a civilized democracy would never do the horrible things you fear.”

      In particular, your support for “requiring permits” destroys the obvious intent of our constitutional rights to free speech and freedom of assembly. If our government demonstrated that it truly can be trusted not to do horrific and unspeakable things to people, then perhaps we could all be more sanguine about the restrictions you so easily support.

      Instead, we have a government that commits and then ignores acts of kidnap, rape, torture, and in the perpetrators of Haditha, even murder.

      In my opinion, a government that cannot prosecute a soldier who murders 24 unarmed men, women, and children (including spraying a woman and her children with bullets in her bedroom) does not deserve the authority over speech and assembly that you seem so eager to give it.

      • Who does?

        I wonder about the implications of your statement. Is your solution to scrap the constitution and start over (as Jefferson, for example, though should be done every few decades).

        • In a republic ...

          You asked “who does”, presumably meaning “who does … deserve the authority of speech and assembly that you so seem so eager to give it”. At the most basic level, I think the answer is something along the lines of “a government responsive to the 99% of us, rather than today’s 1% of our wealthiest scions”.

          So no, I do not propose to “scrap the constitution and start over”. To the contrary, I suggest that the vigorous expressions and assemblies embodied in the OccupyEverything movement reflect the precisely the behaviors contemplated by the Constitution. I further suggest that herding such expression into carefully isolated corners (as was done in Boston for the Democratic Convention) is inimical to the intent of those constitutional protections.

          I add that the coordinated assault on them by a federal agency dedicated to fighting “terror” (using local authorities as tools) is a dangerously provocative step towards creating a national police — a radical step that virtually ALL Americans have opposed ever since the emergence of police states like Nazi Germany, East Germany, and the former Soviet Union.

          I suggest that we return to, rather than “scrap”, the constitution and that we demand that our government be responsive to the 99%, rather than the 1%. I suggest that holding our government accountable for crimes it commits is a hugely important aspect of that. Soldiers who murder must be prosecuted. Executives who order torture must be prosecuted. Police who brutalize (and too often kill) innocents must be prosecuted.

  2. Don't see it as hyperbolic at all...

    …to say it’s hysterical, or maybe hyperbolical is more appropriate for that attitude. I agree with the goals, positions, and motives of the Occupiers, but for some to take enforcement of perfectly legal regulations, and as some have done claim that it’s evidence of a police state, loss of civil liberties etc. is way over the top and I stand by that.

    Hysteria lost any sexist connotations it had a long time ago. That’s like saying that any use of the term “rule of thumb” is still sexist because the original rule of thumb provided that a husband could beat his wife with a stick so long as said stick was no wider than a man’s thumb. Language evolves.

    • When its about MONEY, then ...

      I fear you underestimate just how important MONEY is to those who own the government.

      The threat presented by the Occupy Everything movement is serious because (a) it resonates widely in the population and (b) it threatens to take away (some of) the wealth that owners of our government have plundered from the rest of us.

      There are few threats that these owners take as seriously as a threat to take their wealth. Perhaps you are not concerned that the Department of Homeland Security coordinated the crackdowns on OccupyEverything sites across the nation; some of us are.

      If this use of an agency whose alleged purpose is to protect America from foreign terrorists isn’t evidence of a police state, then what WOULD be? Really, Christopher, just how deep does your denial go?

      The owners of America protect their wealth the way a fighter protects his genitalia. “Over the top”? Not when it’s about money.

  3. OK, Somerville Tom, what's your solution?

    First come, first serve, then too bad for everyone else? It gets to the point where if for example, the Occupiers just stay there forever, then another group, say the Tea Party, are basically being deprived of their right to use public land for demonstrations. How would you balance the rights of all people to be heard?

    Also, don’t conflate war crimes with local law enforcement. The former is federal and military while the latter is city by city and one has nothing to do with the other. Finally don’t insult me by suggesting I’d willingly be arrested just ’cause. I know my rights thank you very much and I’m not so much trying to accomodate the government with this argument as I am the rights of my fellow citizens.

    • Did you read my cite?

      The crackdown on OccupyEverything camps was orchestrated by the Department of Homeland Security. Each crackdown was conducted by “local law enforcement”. The facts demonstrate, to those with eyes to see and ears to hear, that the distinction you attempt to draw doesn’t exist.

      The federal government has demonstrated, over and over, that it tolerates and encourages crimes against humanity when that tolerance or encouragement is expedient. The same federal government used a federal agency, chartered to oppose foreign terrorism, to use local law enforcement to violate the constitutional rights of US citizens. I hope you aren’t arguing that OccupyEverything protesters are foreign terrorists. Failing that, the use of DHS to accomplish simultaneous and coordinated crackdowns using local law enforcement across multiple cities and states in the dead of night (to minimize press scrutiny) surely violates its ostensible charter. So much for your claim that “one has nothing to do with the other”.

      Regarding the rights of our fellow citizens, first come, first serve is better than, for example, the permitting process of the Boston Democratic Convention — where demonstrators dutifully got and obeyed a permit allowing them to use a fenced-in “free speech area”. Genuine freedom of speech and freedom of assembly is chaotic, disorderly, inconvenient, and tends to upset established order.

      That is why it is protected.

  4. addendum to the above

    You were apparently writing your “When it’s about money” comment at the same time I was writing my “what’s your solution” comment as I didn’t see yours until I had submitted mine. I am aware of some coordination with federal authorities so don’t role your eyes too much at the first couple of sentences of my second paragraph above. However as I suspected the article you linked confirmed that it is ultimately a local decision to move in and apparently many local authorities are concerned about safety (again a reasonable concern with crowds that large). I do disagree, however with FBI/DOJ advice to show excess force and try this when the media are least likely to be watching.

  5. We're apparently still playing comment leapfrog.

    I’m of course not arguing that Occupiers are terrorists, and I’m not sure the feds are either, by simply using the resources of the same department that is primarily charged with that mission. However, while we’re noting each other’s hyperbole I will suggest you came close to triggering Godwin’s law with your reference to German Jews earlier. Maybe it’s my background in rules and procedure, but generally speaking as long as the content is not being regulated or favored one way or the other I am more comfortable with some ground rules that allow everyone to be heard and don’t get in the way of others who are going about their business.

    • Exceptions to Godwin's law

      We are not discussing “soup Nazis” and I am not saying “so-an-so is Hitler”.

      In my view, there are real and dangerous similarities between today’s America and Germany of the early 1930s. There are real and dangerous parallels between the economic hardships, the political exploitation of those hardships, and the intentional targeting of scapegoats. The Jews were not the only targets of the Nazi party in 1930.

      The GOP primary campaign truly is targeting scapegoats and pandering to the racists, bigots, homophobes, and xenophobes among us. That is simple fact. I think it is dangerously ingenuous to suggest that obvious and important comparisons with Germany of 1930 be off-limits.

      Similarly, my point in my earlier reference to German Jews is, I think, legitimate: a great many German Jews walked to their deaths because they literally could not believe that 20th-century Germany would do anything truly harmful to them; many thought they were about to clear up a misunderstanding. In my view, too many Americans are in deep denial about how far we have spiraled into fear, brutality, and scapegoating since 9/11. A similar metaphor, if you prefer, is the frog in a beaker of water on a gas burner — will the frog jump out before it boils to death?

      I disagree, vehemently and fundamentally, with your premise that our constitutionally-protected freedoms of expression can be curtailed so that they “don’t get in the way of others who are going about their business”. The entire point of free expression is to interfere with business-as-usual. That is why it is in the Constitution. That is why generations of Americans have died defending it.

      The “free speech” zones of the Boston Democratic Convention, in my view, epitomize the abhorrent restrictions you seem to prefer. In my view, the street demonstrations of Chicago in 1968 were far more in keeping with what the founders had in mind.

  6. This is not a huge deal.

    The protesters can occupy the park all day and night long, they just can’t camp out with tents and other structures. Additionally, McPherson Park is an absolute mess right now with the surrounding blocks reeking of urine and other god awful smells. Nobody is saying the protesters don’t have a right to protests, but there has always been assembly restrictions on time, place and manner. This is not that big of a deal.

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