Tuesday, October 18, 2011

They came, they saw, they Occupied

Occupy Laredo

Occupy Laredo officially made its debut this past Saturday Morning at Jarvis Plaza in downtown Laredo. In actuality, the group had met the evening before to make some signs and go over some preliminary plans but Saturday marked their first public event.

Inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement that began slightly over a month ago, the local group was also seen later at the RioFest kayak races. The process was peaceful, respectful and organized. Some signs read "We are the 99%" echoing the idea that 1% of American Families control about 40 percent of the country's wealth.  Some of the recurring themes that the movement has given voice to include: the lack of accountability on the part of some of the US's richest corporations, the consequences that rampant GREED is having on American families everywhere. Also, the movement has strived for a much more inclusive process for making decisions about what the direction the movement will continue to move in.

This open democratice approach is probably the biggest difference between the Occupy movement and that of the Tea Party. Whereas the Tea Party played to its conservative base by pandering to the more racists and nativists elemenents in their ranks, the opposite is true of the Occupiers. While the Tea Party sought to exclude many types of Americans in order to rally ultra-conservatives, the Occupy groups have at times been criticized for being perpaps too obsessed with the democratic process that it makes reaching any consensus sometimes difficult. The trick will be to maintain its openess and inclusivity while facilitating its progress.

According to the group's Facebook page, there will be meetings weekly. One on Wednesdays at 7pm and the other on Sundays at 3pm. The meetings are scheduled to be held at 1919 Santa Maria on the third level, unless otherwise announced in their Facebook page.


  1. What about protesting the government and the President who signed the taxpayer checks to the bank? Last time I checked...he does not live en laredo!

  2. LOL. I am sorry that you are not more informed comment number 1. That is exactly what the movement is protesting and government at all levels should be accounted for.

  3. I have loans with some of the banks that took bailout money. GM also got a bailout, but they were good about paying it back. Banks, on the other hand, have not been as cooperative. They held on to much of the money, and they're doing things like adding fees for customers.

    Wall Street is getting much of the heat because of the income inequity out there. CEOs make obscene amounts of money while workers' wages have not gone anywhere for a while now.

    The president and Congress should get criticism too for the bailouts, but the ones who are really driving policy are the ones with all the money.


  4. Glad to see it kicking off for individual local stories to be heard. I was surprised to see the group at RioFest - not usual for Laredo at all.

  5. Occupy Laredo and Occupy Wall Street groups appear to be doing nothing more than presenting current liberal political views.

    Some interesting things I like about them are the call for "public" funded elections (althought the US Constitution gets in the way of that) and the ending of the governments involvement in loaning money to private enterprise. Banks, GM, all subsidies, etc....

    Unless the OWS group separates itself from some of the things I see on their webpage, they will only be known as another group of "liberals, anarchist, socialist, or labor union groups.

  6. Hello Tom Wade, yes they very well might be "known" as what you said but mostly to those who have a pre-disposition to view them that way. I think the obscene lobbying and PACs should be done away with and all subsidies- especially those to the Oil and Gas industry. I don't get it- they get subsidies and our gas prices are kept artificially high to benefit the speculators on Wall Street. Imagine all the money that would be freed up in the economy to be spent on other things besides ridiculously inflated gas prices. This movement is way overdue and is welcomed by people from all walks of life.


  7. Echo Chamber: The obscene lobbying and (now Super PACS thanks to the Citizens United v. FEC Supreme court decision) PACs should be done away with and all subsidies- especially those to the Oil and Gas industry. I don't get it- they get subsidies and our gas prices are kept artificially high to benefit the speculators on Wall Street.

    It's not about breaking off, it's about others who know they are getting screwed socially, economically, and politically TO JOIN THE MOVEMENT.

  8. Joining and breaking off are part of the process. The 1 percent is not going to let go of their power- therefore, breaking off.


  9. Here is a plank that would be much more viable for any movement, and yet it seems to wither away as each election moves closer. Even the Tea Party is weak on this.

    Time for Term Limits....you ask about subsidys, all subsidys are is a political payoff/payback. Until we make holding political office a "service to the country" versus being a career, we are always going to have these kinds of entrenched programs that cannot be undone. The professional politican spends his/her entire life in office trying to get re-elected. Time to end that need for money.

    Fix government, and you fix the economy. The government cannot create a "good" economy, they can only hinder an economy.

    PS, the idea that a person should be limited in the amount of money they can make is foolish.