Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

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Alan Maki

Alan Maki
Doing research at the LBJ Library in Austin, Texas

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

It's time to claim our Peace Dividend

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

We need to beat swords into plowshares.

A program for real change...


What we need is a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity" which would make it a mandatory requirement that the president and Congress attain and maintain full employment.

"Voting is easy and marginally useful, but it is a poor substitute for democracy, which requires direct action by concerned citizens"

- Ben Franklin

Let's talk...

Let's talk...

Sunday, October 9, 2011

You say you want a revolution.. but want to forego reforms; dialog with a one of the leaders of the "leaderless" Occupy Wall Street movement

This is a post made on FireDogLake--- my comment is at the end.

In my opinion, it is strange to first talk about occupying Wall Street then occupying a park near Wall Street and then not talking about the need to occupy the mines, mills and factories that the Wall Street coupon clippers own.

Are we talking about building a movement capable of challenging Wall Street for power or are we simply talking about creating a militant looking front that plays well for Barack Obama's re-birthed and perverted sense of populism aimed at getting himself re-elected so he can kick us under the bus as he continues to carry out Wall Streets thoroughly reactionary Wall Street agenda of more wars abroad paid for through austerity measures imposed on the working class here at home.

Here we go again with a new New Left agenda under the guise of "occupy everything" as long as it's a public square or public park; when what we need is to re-build the historic popular front of working class liberals, progressives and leftists fighting and struggling for real change as we prepare the ground to put and end to capitalism and bring forward the socialist alternative.

What the moment requires is a strong anti-capitalist, anti-monopoly coalition--- recognizing the parasitical exploiters, profiteers and warmongers of Wall Street as our enemy--- struggling in the streets, in our communities, in our schools and in our places of employment backed up by a progressive people's party carrying forward an anti-monolpoly agenda aimed at taking political and economic power out of the hands of Wall Street coupon clippers.

Alan L. Maki

« Try And Catch The Wind

Occupy Wall Street: Defining The Undefinable
Saturday October 8, 2011 12:48 am

"Occupy Everything" (Photo: Yung GrassHopper)

Occupy Wall Street is about revolution, not reforms.

The movement is about creating a democracy based on mutual respect, compassion, and looking out for each other’s best interests.

It is all-inclusive to people of any political party and all voices are welcome to the debate as to how to replace the existing corporate/government co-dependency which results in 99% of the people being excluded from the opportunity to succeed on a level playing field.

We have a list of grievances that was generated by Occupy Wall Street in NY, and those issues are all on the table for discussion in a democratic fashion in order to create solutions.

We have only a horizontal hierarchy to prevent one person’s agenda from skewing the needs of the group.

This is not a political movement, it’s a social movement in which we are now first getting to know one another while we’re beginning a national conversation to rectify the position we’ve been put in by the monolithic Wall Street machine that has purchased our representative government.

We are aware that this movement will take time to grow and for that conversation to synthesize the specific changes we democratically choose to take effect.

We are committed to no set timetable, we’re here for as long as it takes and for as long as people stay unified in this shared vision.

Right now we are engaging in direct non-violent action so that we can show our sense of strength and purpose in order to attract more voices to the conversation.

This is not an anti-capitalist campaign, nor do we seek to destroy capitalist institutions.

The goal is to create a new paradigm in which we all enjoy the promises made to us in the Constitution, not just the crumbs left to us by the privileged class.

We are only seeking to benefit from our labors and protect our rights to liberty, health, education, and the pursuit of shared prosperity.

My response---

  • Alan Maki 
    October 9th, 2011 at 6:09 am «


    Could you post the complete “list of grievances” you have referred to?

    I travel quite widely and often through the Great Lakes Region talking to working people about their problems and the solutions to these problems.

    You talk about “occupying” everything. Shouldn’t we be concerned with “occupying” public offices with politicians who will advance an alternative to Wall Street’s agenda of imperialist wars abroad paid for through austerity measures here at home?

    I find it interesting you unequivocally state that this is NOT an anti-capitalist movement and on the other hand you claim this is a revolutionary movement and not about reforms.

    You say you are prepared to occupy for as long as it takes. Fine. But, can people being evicted from their homes wait that long? Can people who are unemployed “wait” for a job until your, as so far claimed but not stated “list of grievances” are addressed and resolved?

    By the way, I really have to wonder what kind of “grievances” you have if these “grievances” don’t include reforms aimed at solving the problems working people are experiencing.

    Quite frankly, what you have written here demonstrates that you don’t understand the relationship between reforms and revolution nor do you seem to understand that working people need a political party to advance their agenda relating to what they struggle and fight for in the streets, in their communities and at work.

    You talk about “occupying everything” but I don’t see any suggestions that closing mines, mills or plants be “occupied” to prevent lockouts in labor disputes nor when mines, mills and plants are designated to be closed while Wall Street ships the jobs to low-cost labor areas overseas.

    Wall Street’s Ford Motor Company has determined— without community and worker participation— that it will close the St. Paul Ford Twin Cities Assembly Plant here in St. Paul, Minnesota later this year as it has begun production of the Ford Ranger in Thailand. Has Occupy Wall Street discussed occupying this plant to save it from the wrecking ball to make way for a housing project that only the well-heeled Wall Street coupon clippers will be able to afford?

    I think it is quite clear this Occupy Wall Street movement has all the traits and earmarks of an anarchist operation the Obama supporting trade union leadership just loves to promote to “prove” its militancy as it tries to shove Wall Street’s Obama down our throats for a second shafting.

    I find it interesting that a movement claiming to be in opposition to Wall Street hasn’t mouthed one single word in opposition to Wall Street’s hand picked and financed president without so much as asking the American people the question: How is Barack Obama’s Wall Street war economy working for you?

    How interesting you call for broader participation in the decision-making process by the people but fail to acknowledge that Wall Street manipulates and controls us to their profit seeking, profit gouging end through the control they have in the corporate boardrooms and through its control of our public institutions including local, state and national public office.

    I don’t think you know what the hell you want.

    Most people in this country do see Wall Street as their enemy. Most people— working people— have a pretty good idea of the kind of country they want even if you don’t want to acknowledge what most Americans want because it doesn’t fit in with your stated ideas of “revolution without reforms.”

    I do know what most people in this country want. And I challenge you or anyone else to prove me wrong. In fact, I challenge you to place this before your “General Assembly” for discussion to see what people have to say. This is nothing more than what I have written down in my notes from talking to people in their homes, at work, in grocery stores and at gas stations. Place it before the “General Assembly” for discussion to see if people agree:

    A people’s program for real change…

    * Peace— end the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya and shutdown the 800 U.S. military bases on foreign soil protecting Wall Street’s interests.

    * A National Public Health Care System – ten million new jobs; free health care for all.

    * A National Public Child Care System – three to five million new jobs; free child care for all working families.

    * Works Progress Administration – three million new jobs; repair, restore and build new infrastructure.

    * Civilian Conservation Corps – two million new jobs protecting and restoring to health our ecosystems.

    * Public Ownership of the 58,000 mines, mills and factories closed by Wall Street – twenty-five million good paying, decent union jobs.

    * Tax the hell out of the rich and cut the military budget by ending the wars to pay for it all which will create full employment.

    * Enforce Affirmative Action; end discrimination.

    * Raise the minimum wage to a real living wage.

    * What tax-payers subsidize in the way of businesses, tax-payers should own and reap the profits from.

    * Moratorium on home foreclosures and evictions.

    * Defend democracy by defending workers’ rights including the right to collective bargaining for improving the lives and livelihoods of working people.

    * Roll-back and freeze the price of food, electricity, gas and heating fuels; not wages, benefits or pensions.

    * Defend and expand Social Security.

    * Wall Street is our enemy.

    Let’s talk about the politics and economics of livelihood for a real change.

    The time has come for working people to break free from Wall Street’s “two-party trap.” We need a working class-based progressive people’s party.

    Peace + tax the rich = millions of new jobs at real living wages putting people to work solving our social problems which will solve our economic problems… Redistribute the wealth. Put people before Wall Street profits.

    How is Barack Obama’s Wall Street war economy working for you?