Occupy Wall Street's Quiet Hero

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Buyers' Choice Realty

Occupy Wall Street's Quiet Hero



I was arrested with this fine man yesterday morning. This is Captain Lewis and November 17th also happens to be his Birthday.

We all sang him Happy Birthday as we stood in our cuffs waiting to be booked for peacefully protesting. We all greeted him with cheers for joining the movement.

He said that we, meaning all of us who have been involved in Occupy Wall Street these last two months, were the ones who deserved the applause because our strength and courage to stand up for what we believe in inspired him. Ah, what a beautiful day!

~Raina Hamner


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Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

This beautiful story warmed my heart.  I hope it touches yours.


Nov 18, 2011 02:22 PM #1
Carla Muss-Jacobs, Principal Broker (503) 810-7192
BuyersAgentPortland.com | Portland Metro Exclusive Buyers Agent | 100% Buyer Representation ~ 100% of the Time - Portland, OR
Buyer Focused ~ Buyer Results

At first I thought you had been arrested.  Then I remembered you're in FL.  It is a strong movement and I hope more people understand what is truly being said by OWS.

Nov 18, 2011 02:25 PM #2
William James Walton Sr.
WEICHERT, REALTORS® - Briotti Group - Waterbury, CT
Greater Waterbury Real Estate

At first, I thought you had been involved in the Occupy Wall Street. But it was a good story. Question: what was the whole point of the Occupy Wall Street protests anyway???

Nov 18, 2011 02:27 PM #3
Charles Stallions Real Estate Services
Charles Stallions Real Estate Services Inc - Gulf Breeze, FL
Buyers Agent 800-309-3414 Pace and Gulf Breeze,Fl.

Just brings back memories of woodstock, sure wish I was young again. I wonder if this generation will accomplish what we did, most don't remember those times but we produced Jimmy Cater and This generation produced Barrack Obama.

Nov 18, 2011 03:16 PM #4
Fred Griffin
Fred Griffin Real Estate - Tallahassee, FL
Licensed Florida Real Estate Broker

"When Policemen break the Law, then there isn't any Law... just a Fight for Survival."      Billy Jack

Nov 18, 2011 06:37 PM #5
Wallace S. Gibson, CPM
Gibson Management Group, Ltd. - Charlottesville, VA

NASCAR fans have the RIGHT movement * OCCUPY South Beach (Miami) - 2 days of festival sponsored by FORD - Great entertainment * food * music and view some AWESOME cars!

Nov 18, 2011 11:31 PM #6
Mike Carlier
Lakeville, MN
More opinions than you want to hear about.

OWS seems similar to demonstrating for world peace.  Whatever the issue, there is nobody on the planet with the ability to  accept defeat and agree to comply with the demonstrators' demands.  With fragmented and sometimes abstract goals, the movement's success is doubtful. 

Nov 19, 2011 03:45 AM #7
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

The Story of Broke, shines a light on the dumb choices our elected so-called leaders are making with our money: handing out tax breaks for oil companies reaping record profits; paving public roads that only go to one place—a new Walmart; granting permits to mine public lands at prices set in 1872; cleaning up toxic messes made by giant chemical companies; and offering public funds for corporations building nuclear reactors and other risky ventures.

*This it but a part of what ows is protesting and attracting attention to.

Nov 19, 2011 03:04 PM #8
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

The Occupy Wall Street Movement is not against Wall Street. It is only against Wall Street Corruption. In particular, the Wall Street corruption of the Wall Street Banksters.

In 1999, Congress repealed the The Glass-Steagall Act, which was put in place right after the great depression to protect against the predatory Banking practices that facilitated the great depression and it worked beautifully for all those years. In its place, Congress enacted The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA), also known as the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999, which effectively made predatory lending legal, thereby creating the basis for the subprime home mortgage crisis that cost taxpayers trillions of dollars: http://bit.ly/YesGlassSteagall

A year later, Congress drove the final nail in our Financial coffin, with the enaction of The Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000) which gave the wall street banksters carte blanche to launch the mortgage backed derivatives schemes, in essence legalizing wall street gambling: http://bit.ly/WeGotScrewed

Last year, The Supreme Court ruled that corporations are people - Citizens United http://bit.ly/NoCitizensUnited . The implications of allowing corporations to contribute unlimited amounts of money secretly and without any regulation, in essence insured their stronghold on our government, by not only lobbying, but now having full blessing to straight out BUY the elections. Last year's elections were the most expensive mid term elections in America's history and 2012 promises to be the most expensive election EVER, with Obama's campaign budget at over a BILLION dollars, the most expensive presidential election EVER! Anyone who thinks that in this type of environment we could have anything remotely similar to a Democracy is probably under the spell of Fox and Rush Limbaugh and completely delusional...

Move To Amend: http://movetoamend.org/

Have corporations overplayed their hand & a backlash is now underway? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FwtRg2WMm6A&feature=share

Unfortunately, most Americans don't know the truth, thus they believe the corporate media lies. Only a handful of huge corporations own all the media, so what you get when you watch the so called News, are obfuscations of the truth.

Here is a list of independent and foreign media, for those who want to know what's really going on: http://on.fb.me/AlternativeMedia

Here is a great book I strongly recommend reading. I urge you to read it. It will shed light on everything I mentioned and you will see what I see and you will understand why I am so supportive of this most important movement:

Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con That Is Breaking America: http://www.amazon.com/Griftopia-Machines-Vampire-Breaking-America/dp/0385529953#reader_0385529953

Also, here are three very good movies to watch in order to garner a better understanding of the heist perpetrated on the American people by the Banksters. This too, will help you understand how grave our situation is and why we desperately need this movement:

Inside Job: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbjdVYmJRHI&feature=related

Meltdown (part 1): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6zZ_JfROhOE

Plunder: http://www.plunderthecrimeofourtime.com/

"When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men,
they create for themselves,
in the course of time,
a legal system that authorizes it,
and a moral code that glorifies it.”
– Political economist Frederic Bastiat, The Law [1850]

“I used to think of Wall Street as a financial center.
I now think of it as a crime scene.”
– Filmmaker Danny Schecter, Plunder (2009)

The Best Way To Rob a Bank is To Own One: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=Rz1b__MdtHY

Our Congress today is a forum for legalized bribery. One consumer group using information from Opensecrets.org calculates that the financial services industry, including real estate, spent $2.3 billion on federal campaign contributions from 1990 to 2010, which was more than the health care, energy, defense, agriculture and transportation industries combined. Why are there 61 members on the House Committee on Financial Services? So many congressmen want to be in a position to sell votes to Wall Street.

We can’t afford this any longer. We need to focus on four reforms that don’t require new bureaucracies to implement. 1) If a bank is too big to fail, it is too big and needs to be broken up. We can’t risk another trillion-dollar bailout. 2) If your bank’s deposits are federally insured by U.S. taxpayers, you can’t do any proprietary trading with those deposits — period. 3) Derivatives have to be traded on transparent exchanges where we can see if another A.I.G. is building up enormous risk. 4) Finally, an idea from the blogosphere: U.S. congressmen should have to dress like Nascar drivers and wear the logos of all the banks, investment banks, insurance companies and real estate firms that they’re taking money from. The public needs to know.

Capitalism and free markets are the best engines for generating growth and relieving poverty — provided they are balanced with meaningful transparency, regulation and oversight. We lost that balance in the last decade. If we don’t get it back — and there is now a tidal wave of money resisting that — we will have another crisis. And, if that happens, the cry for justice could turn ugly. Free advice to the financial services industry: Stick to being bulls. Stop being pigs.


Nov 19, 2011 03:11 PM #9
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate



The level of civilization of a country is denoted by how its weakest members are treated... How civilized are we?

One out of every six elderly Americans now lives below the federal poverty line.

It is being projected that approximately 50 percent of all U.S. children will be on food stamps at some point in their lives before they reach the age of 18.


Extreme Poverty Is Now At Record Levels – 19 Statistics About The Poor That Will Absolutely Astound You: http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/archives/extreme-poverty-is-now-at-record-levels-19-statistics-about-the-poor-that-will-absolutely-astound-you

If you want to understand why America is such a paradise for high-class thieves, just look at the way a manufactured movement like the Tea Party corrals and neutralizes public anger that otherwise should sending pitchforks in the direction of downtown Manhattan.

There are two reasons why Tea Party voters will probably never get wise to the Ponzi-scheme reality of bubble economics. One has to do with the sales pitch of Tea Party rhetoric, which cleverly exploits Main street frustrations over genuinely intrusive state and local governments that are constantly in the pockets of small businesses for fees and fines and permits.

The other reason is obvious: the bubble economy is hard as hell to understand. To even have a chance at grasping how it works, you need to commit large chunks of time to learning about things like securitization, credit default swaps, collateralized debt obligations, etc., stuff that’s fiendishly complicated and that if ingested too quickly can feature a truly toxic boredom factor.

So long as this stuff is not widely understood by the public, the Grifter class is going to skate on almost anything it does – because the tendency of most voters, in particular conservative voters, is to assume that Wall Street makes its money engaging in normal capitalist business and that any attempt to restrain that sector of the economy is thinly disguised socialism.

from Griftopia by Matt Taibbi

Nov 19, 2011 03:13 PM #10
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

1% of Americans are Millionaires

47% of House Reps. are Millionaires

56% of Senators are Millionaires

What would the country be like if our representative government was actually representative?



Nov 19, 2011 03:17 PM #11
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

Live Streams:
Occupy Streams: http://occupystreams.org/
Occupy Live Streams: http://www.occupystream.com/
Live Stream: http://www.livestream.com/globalrevolution
UStream LIVE: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/occupy-u-s

OWS News & Information:
Occupy Together: http://occupytogether.org/
Occupy The Nation: http://www.occupythenation.com/
Adbusters: http://www.adbusters.org/campaigns/occupywallstreet
AnonOps: http://anonops.blogspot.com/
OccupyWallStreet: https://occupywallst.org/

OWS News & Info 2:
Roar – Reflections on a Revolution: http://roarmag.org/
Worldwide Occupation Updates: http://takethesquare.net/
March to Brussels Updates: http://bit.ly/March2B
Road to Dignity: http://october2011.org/

OWS News & Info 3:
Reddit Stream – News & Information about OWS: http://www.reddit.com/r/occupywallstreet
Occupy Wall Street News: http://owsnews.org/
The Nation OWS Live Blog: http://www.thenation.com/blogs/greg-mitchell
OWS Links & Info: http://occupyt-shirts.com/wordpress/
Occupy News from the various occupations around the world: http://www.occupynews.blogspot.com/

Networking & Help:
National Lawyers Guild’s Guide for the Occupations: http://www.nlg.org/occupy/
User Groups Directory: http://www.nycga.net/groups/
Occupy Wall Street's Open-Source To-Do List: http://bit.ly/owsOpenSourceInfoEmergent Culture: A Call for the Coalition of the Just: http://emergent-culture.com/a-movement-to-unite-all-movements/
NYC GA: http://www.nycga.net/

Facebook & Twitter:
Carpool to Occupy: http://on.fb.me/Carpool2Occupy
Occupy Wall Street on Fbk: http://on.fb.me/OccupyOnFacebook
Occupy Wall Street – The Event on Facebook –http://on.fb.me/OccupyTheEvent
Occupy Nationwide Twitter Guide: http://bit.ly/owsTwitter


Nov 19, 2011 03:18 PM #12
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

The Net Capital Rule:

In 2004 the five biggest investment banks in the country (at the time, Merrill Lynch, Goldman, Morgan Stanley, Lehman Brothers, and Bear Stearns) had gone to then SEC chairman William Donaldson and personally lobbied to remove restrictions on borrowing so that they could bet even more of whatever other people’s money they happened to be holding on bullshit investments like mortgage-backed securities.

They were making so much straight cash betting on the burgeoning housing bubble that it was no longer enough to be able to bet twelve dollars for every dollar they actually had, the maximum that was then allowed under a thing called the net capital rule.

So people like Hank Paulson (at the time, head of Goldman Sachs) got Donaldson to nix the rule, which allowed every single one of those banks to jack up their debt-to-equity ratio above 20:1. In the case of Merrill Lynch, it got as high as 40:1.

This was gambling, pure and simple, and it got rewarded with the most gargantuan bailout in history. It was irresponsibility on a scale far beyond anything any individual homeowner could even conceive of. The only problem was, it was invisible. When the economy tanked, the public knew it should be upset about something, that somebody had been irresponsible. But who?

Griftopia by Matt Taibbi

Nov 19, 2011 03:19 PM #13
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate


Is the SEC Covering Up Wall Street Crimes? http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/is-the-sec-covering-up-wall-street-crimes-20110817#ixzz1c3Osui42

Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids and the Long Con That is Breaking America: http://www.amazon.com/Griftopia-Machines-Vampire-Breaking-America/dp/0385529953#reader_0385529953

Why Isn't Wall Street in Jail?
Financial crooks brought down the world's economy — but the feds are doing more to protect them than to prosecute them: http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/why-isnt-wall-street-in-jail-20110216#ixzz1c3PdwTxP

Glenn Greenwald On “America’s Lawless Elite” http://onpoint.wbur.org/2011/10/26/glenn-greenwald

Success is the national religion, and almost everyone is a believer. Americans love winners. But that's just the problem. These guys on Wall Street are not winning – they're cheating. And as much as we love the self-made success story, we hate the cheater that much more. http://bit.ly/WallStreetCheats

Nov 19, 2011 03:21 PM #14
Broker Nick
South Florida Real Estate & Development, Inc. - Pembroke Pines, FL
Broker Nick Relocation Broker Service

To be arrested for something that does not makes sense - well it is senseless. It is not Wall Street that has put anything on America - it is the White House and Congress.

I would have more respect if they were protesting there, not at a private sector. The protest of capitalism is nothing more than communists trying to change America.

Protest the stranglehold of government regulations that are stopping businesses from hiring, protest government spending which has bankrupt this country.

Not the private sector which actually pays taxes!

Nov 20, 2011 02:11 AM #15
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

 Nicholas:  I hear you; I hear you!  You don’t have to scream!

 Now that we have that straight, let’s address the rest:

1.  "Not the private sector which actually pays taxes!"

Response:  Well, not really! 

The effective corporate tax rate has been steadily declining for decades. Corporations paid more than 49% of their profits in federal taxes in the 1950s, 38% in the 1960s, 33% in the 1970s and 25% in the 1980s. All the while, U.S. wages have been stagnant for years even as productivity has risen. Between 1989 and 2010, U.S. productivity grew by 62.5% -- far outpacing wages, which grew by only 12% during the same period, according to a March 2011 study by the Economic Policy Institute. 

*Compare those historic corporate rates of 49%, 38%, 33% and 25%, with our current 13%-15%-18% effective tax rate for corporations.  Who do you think makes up the slack?  That’s right: you and I do!

One of the more egregious falsehoods being peddled by the corporate tax cutters is that companies doing business in the United States are taxed at an exorbitant rate. Not so. While the United States has one of the highest statutory rates on the books at 35 percent, the only fair way to measure what companies actually pay is their effective rate — what they ultimately pay after deductions, credits and assorted writeoffs. By that yardstick, companies in the United States consistently pay taxes at rates lower than corporations in Japan and many nations in Europe.

Lest you have any doubt that the overtaxed American corporation is anything but a fairy tale, consider this:

During the 1950s, the decade in which more people joined the middle class than at any time in history — before or since — corporations paid 49 percent of their profits in taxes. Last year, it was about half that rate, a decidedly more modest 26 percent. In 2010, corporate tax collections totaled $191 billion — down 8 percent from $207 billion as recently as 2000.

Perhaps a more telling yardstick, corporate tax revenue in 2009 came to just 1 percent of gross domestic product — the lowest collection level since 1936, or three-quarters of a century ago. In 2010, it edged up to a puny 1.3 percent — the second lowest since 1940. Even worse, the shriveled tax collections came at a time when corporations were registering an all-time high in profits. At the end of 2010, corporations posted an annualized profit of $1.65 trillion in the fourth quarter. In other words, the more they made, the less they paid. As for the corporate share of total income taxes paid by businesses and individuals, it has plummeted from 40 percent in 1950, the dawn of Middle America’s golden age, to 18 percent last year.

The numbers tell us that a lot of politicians, including would-be presidential candidates, are mathematically challenged.  http://americawhatwentwrong.org/story/taxes-and-corporations/


A.     The corporate tax rate in the U.S. is 35%, but there aren't many companies that end up paying that amount. According to a study by the Citizens for Tax Justice and the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, the average tax rate of 280 S&P 500 companies investigated was 18.5% between 2008 and 2010.

B.     Over 70 companies paid no taxes at all.

C.     And then there were the 30 companies that paid less than nothing

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/these-are-the-30-american-companies-that-paid-less-than-zero-income-tax-from-2008-2010-2011-11?op=1#ixzz1eGWu0rEy

Thirty companies, the report says, had a negative income tax rate from 2008 to 2010 (meaning:  we, the People of the United States, GAVE THEM MONEY!), even though they took home a combined $160 billion in pre-tax profits.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/03/major-corporations-tax-subsidies_n_1073548.html


The following is not part of your argument, but FOX and other corporate media keeps asserting: 

 “But tax cuts for the corporations help create jobs!” 

Response:  No, not true!  Lower Corporate Taxes won’t create more jobs.

Compared with other advanced economies, companies doing business in the U.S. already pay low taxes. It's true that at 35% the corporate tax rate is technically higher than most major economies. But because of loopholes and other deductions, most companies pay significantly less – so the effective rate (or the percentage of corporate profits that is paid in federal corporate taxes) is about 13% to 15%, which is relatively low even by international standards.

General Electric (GE) has been the latest poster child of this phenomenon. Although it says it will have a small tax liability for 2010, the tax burden is tiny considering it made a profit in the U.S. last year of $5.1 billion, thanks to deductions, adjustments, offshore profit centers, and a 1,000-person tax team. However legal this might be, there's something unsettling about it all, especially at a time when millions of Americans are out of work and our state and federal governments wrangle over budget cuts that include slicing funding for everything from education to public safety.

For one, it likely won't create much more investment or create many more jobs, says Robert Lynch, economics professor at Washington College, who has done extensive research into taxation and economic development. In a 2004 study, Lynch found that firms don't necessarily relocate or expand to an area more just because it has lower taxes. What's more, while a lower tax rate reduces costs for companies and creates some positive effects on local economies, it doesn't necessarily create substantial jobs. Just take a look at South Dakota, which currently has no corporate income tax and ranks first in the Tax Foundation's Business Climate index. Even its governor acknowledges that the sparsely-populated state has had a tough time attracting household names.

Lynch says the same holds true at the federal level. What worries the economist is that any cuts to corporate taxes would take funding away from other public services such as education, new roads and infrastructure projects that companies and the overall economy might gain more from.

"Companies aren't suffering from a lack of investment funds," Lynch says, pointing to record cash levels held by America's biggest companies. "What they're suffering from is lack of profitable investment opportunities."

Even as many non-financial companies sit on an estimated $2 trillion at a time when interest rates have remained at nearly 0%, executives still aren't hiring much. Indeed, much of that capital is sitting overseas and there's a coordinated push among some of America's biggest companies to bring those funds home at lower costs. Cisco (CSCO), Apple (AAPL), Duke Energy (DUK) and Pfizer (PFE) are leading an effort for a one-year tax holiday on foreign earnings that would allow companies to repatriate money at a much lower tax rate of about 5%.   http://finance.fortune.cnn.com/2011/04/08/lower-corporate-taxes-wont-create-more-jobs/


2.       Location.  You’ll be happy to know that we are also protesting in Washington DC.  As a matter of fact, we now have 2,630 Occupations all over the world, including Washington DC.  Like you, when I first heard about the plans for Occupy Wall Street, I thought the same way as you: why Occupy Wall Street, when we should occupy the seat of power?

  The more I leaned, the more I understood that the seat of power is not Washington DC, but Wall Street.  Washington DC is where Wall Street’s puppets are located at; it’s Wall Street that pulls the strings.  I’ve submitted enough links above this entry to substantiate that fact, if you care to look.


Nov 20, 2011 04:55 AM #16
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

Nicholas:  If you think you know what's going on in the world because you watch CNN, FOX, or any of the other corporate media, you're sadly mistaken: a handful of corporate behemoths own ALL Major Media in the US!  If you watch the corporate media you know only that which they want you to know. 

I was born and raised behind the iron curtain, under a communist and totalitarian regime, from which we defected.  Do you know what the difference is between Romanians under communism and today's Americans?  In communist Romania, we KNEW that our Media was pure propaganda disseminated by our government and the ruling elite!

*Note: For independent media, where you can bypass the obfuscations and manipulation:  http://on.fb.me/AlternativeMedia

Nov 20, 2011 05:12 AM #17
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

Police brutality at Occupy      http://storify.com/adbusters/police-brutality


Shocking Images Show Escalating Violence Against OWS: http://www.care2.com/causes/shocking-images-show-escalating-violence-against-ows.html

Nov 20, 2011 12:25 PM #18
Dale Terry
Yadkinville, NC

Mirela, that is alot of information to digest.  Since most of it is rehash, the point is well taken, corporations, manly multinationals, are screwing the public.  Okay, I get it and agree with you.  But my problem is that all those on the left seem to be able to separate government from the big corporations.  It is not only the banks fault, there had to senators and congressmen giving away those tax breaks.  Why are the protesters only concerned with the banks and not trying to protest against Obama and Congress?  Why pick only one special interest group?  Why not unions, big education, social programs gone crazy? 

Let's be honest, the protests are one sided and are not going to achieve recognition from the masses until they have something the masses are interested in.

I see that there are "shocking images" concerning police brutality?  Who told the police (campus police) to "escalate" the violence as you put it.  Was it the banks?  NO, it was the idiots that run our institutions that see that their power might be at risk.  They are all liberals too, imagine that.

Nov 22, 2011 09:41 AM #19
Shirley Husar
Herizon Plus Realty Development - Pasadena, CA
Cash Investors Wanted Direct Bank

GoTo www.hiphoprepublican.tv to see all 4 to 5 of the OWS Cities

Nov 29, 2011 07:30 PM #20
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