Andrew Burton/Getty Images
Photo: Andrew Burton/2011 Getty Images
After a volatile day of protests and nearly 300 arrests, Occupy Wall Street rang in its two-month anniversary with a show of force across lower Manhattan on Thursday. But it doesn’t change the essential fact that nobody will be sleeping in Zuccotti Park tonight, or perhaps ever again.
The “Day of Action” saw Occupy Wall Street organizers trying new tactics: a roving protest model; continuous, decentralized direct action; and disruptions to New York City that reach beyond the boundaries of downtown’s financial district.
The leading occupiers are spinning the eviction as creative destruction, a way to refresh and revitalize a movement that had grown stale and claustrophobic. Amid reports that the recent spate of police raids were nationally coordinated and federally planned, organizers hope to boost coordination themselves — from Oakland to Albuquerque. The new message: Leave the parks and take to the streets; occupy offices, bridges, subways, and Ivy League schools.
Harrison Schultz, a central organizer of the protests, has been at the occupation since it was just a handful of people in used sleeping bags. Along with the AdBusters crew, he was among several early arrivals who laid the occupation’s foundations; now, they’re racing to rethink them. “Many of my colleagues and I do think that this is the beginning of a new phase for the occupy movement,” he told New York. “New tactics are in order to respond to a national effort against the occupymovement.”
Jackie DiSalvo, a former member of SDS and English professor at Baruch College who has helped coordinate Occupy’s dealings with the labor movement, said that unions will intensify their efforts outside of the park. “The labor movement is pretty angry,” she told me. “They’re going to get their forcesout.”
More broadly, DiSalvo said, “things are spreading out.” As Brendan Burke, a security-minded occupier, told the Village Voice, it “doesn’t have to be about holding ground anymore.” The occupation’s presence will grow in Brooklyn and Harlem. Their motto: “Occupy the Hood.” In Harlem, a group of occupiers are planning on occupying old brownstones. And although many reports alleged that the occupation intends to “shut down” the subways, organizers say the real plan is to “recruit people on thetrains.”
But even as the protesters talk about roving further afield, Thursday’s protests were still concentrated downtown: Zuccotti Park, the New York Stock Exchange, and the Brooklyn Bridge. Given the eviction, this is harder to justify. Not many of the traders and bank CEOs that inspire so much ire among the protesters actually work on Wall Street these days. The New York Stock Exchange, site of Thursday morning’s opening protests, does virtually all of its trading electronically; the few remaining blue-jacketed traders are mostly visual props for CNBC. The major banks are all headquartered in midtown, Manhattan’s real business district. The hedge funds are in Greenwich. The new tactics may never hit pay dirt if they remain clustered around Occupy’s former stronghold in Zuccotti. In other words, Occupy Wall Street may need to forget about WallStreet.
Intelligence community sources are pushing back a DNI official’s claim that Russia was trying to help Trump get re-elected
The US intelligence community has assessed that Russia is interfering in the 2020 election and has separately assessed that Russia views Trump as a leader they can work with. But the US does not have evidence that Russia’s interference this cycle is aimed at reelecting Trump, the officials said.
“The intelligence doesn’t say that,” one senior national security official told CNN. “A more reasonable interpretation of the intelligence is not that they have a preference, it’s a step short of that. It’s more that they understand the President is someone they can work with, he’s a dealmaker.” …
One intelligence official said that [DNI official Shelby] Pierson’s characterization of the intelligence was “misleading” and a national security official said Pierson failed to provide the “nuance” needed to accurately convey the US intelligence conclusions.
Trump’s NSA is apparently denying Russia’s support for Trump while attacking Sanders
National security adviser Robert O’Brien tells ABC in interview to air tomorrow that he hasn’t seen any evidence of Russia seeking to help Trump. Asked whether Russia might be helping Sanders, he says reports could be credible. “That’s no surprise. He honeymooned in Moscow.”
Concerns linger as some [caucus] volunteers say they haven’t received hands-on training with the iPads the party purchased to help tabulate results. Other volunteers are worried about executing the caucus’ new voting alignment system, which includes the extra complication of adding early-vote totals to day-of results — a step that even Iowa, with all its problems, didn’t have to deal with.
Multiple presidential campaigns are anxious that the state party won’t finish tabulating the enormous number of early votes by Saturday — and they want more transparency on how those votes will be divvied up to individual precincts.
Finally, there are signs the state party is worried about unflattering internal details about the caucus being divulged. On Thursday night, the Nevada Democratic Party sent an email to volunteer precinct chairs in rural areas asking them to sign a non-disclosure agreement and simultaneously offering a stipend.
Well-funded social media campaign, or bot network?
The Bloomberg campaign broke the rules with its paid social media blitz, says Twitter. It just suspended 70 accounts, some belonging to campaign employees who were copy-pasting messages. Scoop from @suhaunah and me. https://t.co/M065RB0Ogm