Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

Texas Longhorns with newborn calf in Bluebonnets

Please note I have a new phone number...


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...

Monday, October 10, 2011

Some more thoughts about the Occupy Wall Street movement

I assume my comments are welcome by the Occupy Wall Street movement whether there is agreement or not--- part of the democratic participation we are all striving for; correct?

The Occupy Wall Street movement suggests, and correctly so, that "democracy" with full participation of the people (99%) in the decision making processes (I assume full participation means social, political and economic?)is the objective yet it seems some solutions to problems are not being considered. Why not put everything on the table for discussion, dialog and debate and let people decide?

We want a participatory democratic process where working people (the majority of the 99%) are involved at all levels of society in ways where our participation actually allows us to make decisions affecting our lives instead of being trapped into thinking that our role is to rubber stamp the actions of Wall Street's two-party scheme and scam; right?

"They" is referred to in this "Declaration" < http://nycga.cc/2011/09/30/declaration-of-the-occupation-of-new-york-city/ > of the OWS movement, and this is called "Occupy Wall Street," yet Wall Street has not been declared our common enemy and obviously this "Declaration" is so vague you do not interpret it to be a statement against capitalism and its most decadent stage, imperialism. Not a single Wall Street office has been occupied--- at least not yet.

The grievances are stated but where are the solutions to these problems stated?

Who are these grievances being presented to for solution?

What is being demanded of government?

Will methods be found to present these grievances to those who have the power to resolve these problems?

Above in my comment I have presented a "people's program for real change" which BEGINS to address many of the specific grievances that are listed in this "Declaration"
< http://nycga.cc/2011/09/30/declaration-of-the-occupation-of-new-york-city/ > you provide us a link to.

We need solutions (reforms) to our (the 99%; mostly working people) problems that are financed by redistributing the wealth of this 1% (Wall Street).

The Occupy Wall Street movement is a very important development only to the extent that it brings people into struggles for very specific reforms (personally, I hope OWS is preparing the ground to get rid of capitalism sooner rather than later) as we challenge Wall Street for power which will take struggles in the streets combined with electoral struggle and occupations of mines,mills and factories where employers lock out workers in an attempt to evade collective bargaining and where Wall Street (corporations/banks) decide to close down factories and ship jobs to low wage/cheap resource areas. Student occupations of colleges and universities demanding free higher-level education while negotiating lower tuitions, etc. Occupations of welfare offices when these arrogant bureaucrats deny people the help they are entitled to. Occupations of Congressional offices demanding peace, the prosecutions of war criminals like Bush, Cheney, Obama.

Occupations of public parks and public squares are good for the purpose of holding discussions about what needs to be done but let us not delude ourselves or anyone else that these occupations of public parks and public squares are going to lead to reforms getting our grievances resolved--- let alone revolution.

Change simply isn't going to come through one big occupation of a park or a public square or even the occupation of hundreds of public parks or public squares.

Begin to occupy Goldman Sachs, congressional offices and dogging Barack Obama on the campaign trail insisting on real reforms intended to solve the very real and very specific problems people are experiencing and we take this movement to a higher level which will assure this movement will not be manipulated and controlled by Obama and the other Wall Street bribed and owned politicians.

If out of these discussions taking place during these occupations we agree to organize a political movement to free ourselves from Wall Street's two-party trap, a political movement capable of articulating these grievances and their solutions, and we elect people's politicians from the ranks of those involved in and supporting the OWS movement we bring together a massive anti-monopoly coalition that can challenge Wall Street for power (take power away from Wall Street and make "power to the people" a reality) we will then have a movement against "them" ("They")--- Wall Street.

The New York Times advises Barack Obama to engage in a demagogic populist rhetoric using the grievances articulated by the OWS movement... are WE (99%) going to allow THEM (Wall Street- 1%)to get away with this--- without so much as solving one single one of our problems?

Again, here are some ideas I put forward for discussion, let's discuss how this fits in with the grievances and what kind of specific legislation, etc. it is going to take to get our (99%) problems solved--- this is our common goal and objective, is it not? Let's call this our "revolutionary road;" reforms on the road to revolution:

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.

The OWS movement needs to have a real dialog with the American people beginning with asking the question:

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

This is a most basic and fundamental question requiring an answer because from the way people answer this question we find get to the specific problems and what it is going to take to agree on solutions.

Primarying Obama and electing activists from the Occupy Wall Street movement to local, state and federal offices on a third party ticket should also become a part of this movement--- just look at the base of support for these candidates there would be. Occupy public offices with candidates prepared to fight Wall Street for power.