He must have had this Wall Street gentry in mind, or at least their prototypes, for in every age it has been the tyrant, the oppressor
E. V. Debs' Canton, Ohio Anti-War Speech
DEMANDS. why demands? OWS is not a functioning democracy. it is a social gathering of those who are voiceless in the current government. its main function is to bring social justice issues into the mainstream political conversation which would otherwise go ignored. buttttt these are pretty good:
1. Break up the monopolies. The so-called "Too Big to Fail" financial companies – now sometimes called by the more accurate term "Systemically Dangerous Institutions" – are a direct threat to national security. They are above the law and above market consequence, making them more dangerous and unaccountable than a thousand mafias combined. There are about 20 such firms in America, and they need to be dismantled; a good start would be to repeal the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act and mandate the separation of insurance companies, investment banks and commercial banks.
2. Pay for your own bailouts. A tax of 0.1 percent on all trades of stocks and bonds and a 0.01 percent tax on all trades of derivatives would generate enough revenue to pay us back for the bailouts, and still have plenty left over to fight the deficits the banks claim to be so worried about. It would also deter the endless chase for instant profits through computerized insider-trading schemes like High Frequency Trading, and force Wall Street to go back to the job it's supposed to be doing, i.e., making sober investments in job-creating businesses and watching them grow.
3. No public money for private lobbying. A company that receives a public bailout should not be allowed to use the taxpayer's own money to lobby against him. You can either suck on the public teat or influence the next presidential race, but you can't do both. Butt out for once and let the people choose the next president and Congress.
4. Tax hedge-fund gamblers. For starters, we need an immediate repeal of the preposterous and indefensible carried-interest tax break, which allows hedge-fund titans like Stevie Cohen and John Paulson to pay taxes of only 15 percent on their billions in gambling income, while ordinary Americans pay twice that for teaching kids and putting out fires. I defy any politician to stand up and defend that loophole during an election year.
5. Change the way bankers get paid. We need new laws preventing Wall Street executives from getting bonuses upfront for deals that might blow up in all of our faces later. It should be: You make a deal today, you get company stock you can redeem two or three years from now. That forces everyone to be invested in his own company's long-term health – no more Joe Cassanos pocketing multimillion-dollar bonuses for destroying the AIGs of the world.
many onlookers ask 'but what are the demands?'
What are we protesting against?
The movement is not confined under one banner
rather, it is a clear display against financial elites,
which are propagating endless war, unemployment,
and taking away the future of the middle class and environment.
The 99% refuse to be oppressed by the 1% with a quarter of the nation's wealth.
Specific causes isolate groups and are ultimately divisive.
As we see in NYC and in solidarity gathering across the country, the 'lovely disorganization' of occupywallstreet makes everyone feel like they can be part of it, and it is out of this spirit of youth that a populist mass uprising can thrive.