Occupy Wall Street Update: NYC Protesters Fight Against Eviction, Another Pepper-Spray Victim Presses Charges

Here are some of the latest developments regarding Occupy Wall Street and other occupations around the country:

--A showdown is brewing in Zuccotti Park/Liberty Plaza over clean-up of the occupation space. In one corner is Mayor Bloomberg, who's dispatching sanitation workers to the square on Friday and has ordered the occupiers to comply with the workers' clean-up efforts (which would involve "temporarily" vacating the area). Bloomberg swears the protesters will be able to return in the park "provided they abide by the rules that Brookfield has established for the park." But the protesters are (understandably) worried that officials will start enforcing park rules (no tarps, no laying down, etc.), effectively destroying the infrastructure of the space. So they have a different plan to clean up the area, while keeping their park. Their statement, via Gothamist:

On Wednesday/Thursday, all campers/supporters should reach out to friends/family/anyone to donate or purchase brooms, mops, squeegees, dust pans, garbage bags, power washers and any other cleaning supplies to be collected at sanitation. The sanitation committee should move full-speed ahead on purchase of bins allocated by consensus at GA.

After General Assembly on Thursday, we'll have a full-camp cleanup session. Sanitation can coordinate, and anyone who is available will help with the massive community effort! Then, Friday morning, we'll awake and position ourselves with our brooms and mops in a human chain around the park, linked at the arms. If NYPD attempts to enter, we'll peacefully/non-violently stand our ground and those who are willing will get arrested.

Afterwards, we'll march with brooms and mops to Wall Street to do a massive #wallstcleanup march, where the real mess is!

Update: MoveOn started a petition asking Mayor Bloomberg not to evict the protesters. Also, if you live in NYC, you can call 311 to voice your concerns.

Update 2: The Postconfirms that protesters won't be allowed to bring their tents, coolers, or gear back into the park with them after the official clean-up. “People will have to remove all their belongings and leave the park,” Police Commissioner Ray Kelly told the paper. “After it’s cleaned, they’ll be able to come back. But they won’t be able to bring back the gear, the sleeping bags, that sort of thing will not be able to be brought back into the park.” Ugh.

--Check out this awesome interactive map of the long-term plans for Zuccotti Park, from Mother Jones. An internet cafe! An art space! An expanded assembly area!

--The Village Voicereports that another of Tony Bologna's pepper-spray victims has decided to press charges.

--Business Insiderhas published an epic and exhaustive post to help readers visualize what the Wall Street protesters are angry about. Go read it, and then share it with anyone you know who stilldoesn't get what these protests are about.

--Matt Taibbi notes in Rolling Stonethat "the time is rapidly approaching when the movement is going to have to offer concrete solutions to the problems posed by Wall Street," so he gives us five specific demands that he thinks the Occupy Wall Street movement should consider getting behind. The list includes breaking up monopolies, taxing hedge-fund gamblers, and changing the way bankers get paid. Read a bit more about his advice here.

--Saturday is going to be a huge, international Day of Action tied to the Occupy Wall Street protests. Find out more information here, and spread the word.

--Actually, You're the 47%, a new Tumblr. Read it.

--Also: We Are the 1%. We Stand With the 99%.

--The number of solidarity occupations around the world continues to grow. According to the Occupy Together site, we're up to 1,450! Yowza.

--And here's confirmation that the Occupy Wall Street media blackout was short-lived. (Though the qualityof the coverage is a whole other story):

In the first full week of October, according to Pew’s Project for Excellence in Journalism, the protests occupied 7 percent of the nation’s collective news coverage, up from 2 percent in the last week of September. Before then, the coverage was so modest as to be undetectable by the Project for Excellence in Journalism, which surveys 52 news outlets each week to produce a weekly study of news coverage.

--Reportedly,seven protesters were arrested in DC today while trying to gain access to the House Armed Services Committee where Defense Secretary Leon Panetta was testifying, with the message of "bring the troops home." According to a statement from CODEPINK, dozens of people tried to gain access to Panetta's testimony, but only 15 were allowed in, and they weren't permitted to quietly hold up protest signs.

AlterNet / By Lauren Kelley

Posted at October 13, 2011, 4:11am

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