Why we should all occupy Wall St.
Update: We will be joining in the largest Occupy Wall Street march yet on Wednesday, October 5 at 4:30 pm. It will go from Foley Square (map) (no longer City Hall) to Wall Street. More information on our Facebook event here.
That's what a top State Department official wrote in an email to the top lobbyist for TransCanada, a tar sands oil producer, upon hearing that he had garnered support for the Keystone KL pipeline from a US Senator. That shouldn't be too surprising, since the lobbyist was one of Hillary Clinton's campaign aides during her presidential run. The cozy relationship between corporate lobbyists and decisionmakers isn't anything new, but it's just as despicable as ever. And with the Keystone XL pipeline issue, corporate America's fingerprints are turning up all over the place.
The real decision on Keystone XL, though, won't happen at the State Department--the permit must be signed in the White House. Will President Obama, who campaigned saying "I don't take a dime of their [lobbyist] money, and when I am president, they won't find a job in my White House." be willing to push back against TransCanada, and break the stranglehold these corporations and their Wall St. financiers have on our government, or will he be complicit in the corporate takeover of our democracy (and our atmosphere)?
Later on this year, when Obama makes a decision whether to go forward with the tar sands pipeline, we'll know where he stands--but the Occupy Wall Street protesters aren't waiting that long. The amount of energy and awareness about corporate greed and corruption that the Occupy Wall Street movement has generated so far is incredible. Their numbers have ballooned from a few hundred to thousands, and Occupy movements have started up in dozens of other cities around the country and the world.
While from an outside perspective it might seem disorganized, the protestors consisting mainly of the young and disaffected, their message is clear: When Wall St occupies the halls of congress and the machinery of our democracy, the people must occupy Wall St. In the case of the Keystone pipeline, the emails show that big oil and Wall St. certainly walk the halls of the State Department with impunity. Now, it's time for climate activists to join hands with the Wall Street protestors, and occupy together.
Here's a quick video of some Occupy Wall Street folks talking about the connection between Climate Change and the occupation.