Used Books

City Fined for Destroying
Occupy Wall Street Library

It was an act of truculence from the NYPD, just as the many arrests and illegal surveillance of members of the Occupy Wall Street movement, which even at its peak, remained an example of restrain as far as protest rallies go. An act that, even after two years, has no defenders.
A mistake, it’s now agreed, that will cost New York City, or rather, its taxpayers, $230,000, which includes reparations for the destruction of the volunteer-maintained People’s Library, plus the small windfall that lawyers, hired by the movement to litigate the case, have earned.
OWS has gone through many phases since that spring, summer and fall, still the only consistent act of rebellion against the widespread multi-billion malfeasance, perpetrated by Wall Street bankers, that brought most of the world’s finances to an almost standstill. Not quite, though, as it turned out.
Neither the U.S. government has managed to punish a single character in that tragic operetta, which bankrupted entire nations across the world, along with millions of working families. On the contrary, as far as anyone know, those same bosses have since thrived and are, in fact, wealthier than ever nowadays.
That’s why the raid of Zuccotti Park, in Lower Manhattan, was so out of proportion then, and utterly absurd now even as it recedes in time. While the city was wasting its highly trained law enforcement agents, their very own pensions were too being raided by the same chiefs who’d called them to clear the park in the first place. Not even Machiavelli could’ve envisioned such a mascarade.
The movement has found other venues to remain relevant since that fateful year. Whether it’s found its true calling by purchasing and forgiving debt of common citizens, as in the Strike Debt initiative (see on your left), or just being instrumental whenever needed, as it did during the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, it’s a discussion for another post.
In this context, beating the city in a lawsuit is not even its greatest achievement. But it sure helps. Thinking about that, here’s what Colltales published about the raid, and the chilling message it sent to some of us, to whom any time libraries and books are destroyed, burned, or dumped, the hair in the back of our neck stands up. Enjoy it.
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Booking the Future

When Libraries Are Destroyed,
Bad Memories Drive the Protest

When the New York Police Department raided the Occupy Wall Street encampment in Zuccotti Park, Lower Manhattan, last Tuesday, destroying its free makeshift library, it unwittingly joined a sad and brutal roll call of fanatics that stretches back many centuries.
The NYPD became just the newest member of an infamous club that includes the Taliban, German Nazis, the Khmer Rouge, Imperial Japanese forces, The British Empire, the Catholic Church, and an assortment of despots and bloody occupation armies across time, religions, cultures and ideologies.
All at one time or another, have been singled out by history for being responsible of the destruction of millions of books. The volumes will never be recovered or even identified, and those who did away with them exist now mainly under the general banner of scourge. But what has been lost to mankind certainly goes way beyond their horrific deeds.
Even before Gutenberg officially invented the modern print, books were perceived as a threat to power. Thus, the way the police confiscated the 5,000-odd volumes covering a wide array of subjects that had been donated to the OWS movement, was but a small, albeit not new, Continue reading

Occupy Wall Street

Peaceful Six-Month Anniversary Marked
by Zuccotti Evictions & Dozens Arrested

In a ‘court order violation,’ according to witnesses, the NYPD re-occupied Zuccotti Park last night in Lower Manhattan, and arrested an unknown number of participants in what had been a day of celebration for the Occupy Wall Street movement’s first six months.
As it happened before, police used MTA buses to take away those arrested and at least one protester, which sources say it’s student Cecilia McMillan, has been injured and remains at a non-identified city hospital. Elsewhere in the city, incidents of public intoxication and disorderly conduct by St. Patrick’s Day revelers, however, didn’t deserve the same attention from the NYPD.
After being evicted from Zuccotti, which was closed with barricades to ‘undergo cleaning,’ according to some uniformed officers who declined to be identified, hundreds of protesters headed to Union Square park, where they congregated until early morning. Reports of additional arrests can not be independently confirmed at this time.
Last night’s incidents, although far from the confrontation of previous months, in New York and other cities throughout the world, may have served as a sample of the NYPD’s plans for the expected increase in street protests by the OWS movement in coming months: a massive police display and the willingness to arrest even those who’re peacefully and lawfully exercising their civil rights.
It’s a risky strategy and, despite being presented as an attempt at preserving the rights of those not directly involved with the protests, as Mayor Bloomberg has stated in the past, the use of heavy riot gear and equipment by the police is, in itself, a confrontational gesture towards a movement that, for the most part, has accommodated and follow all rules concerning street protesting.
This being a presidential election year, too, it’s necessary to call attention, once more, to the fact that most New York elected officials, at city, state and federal level, have been missing in this six-month struggle to bring the crucial issue of accountability from financial institutions to the national debate. There must be something about the OWS movement that’s keeping them all away.
It’s doubtful, though, that such an abandonment of their constituency will remain so after November’s election. When their own well-heeled seats will be up for grabs, it’s only fair to expect that OWS participants and sympathizers, who have been literally thrown under the NYPD-driven MTA buses, will respond in kind. After all, NY taxpayers fund, at least in part, their elected officials’ salary.

Booking the Future

When Libraries Are Destroyed,
Bad Memories Drive the Protest

When the New York Police Department raided the Occupy Wall Street encampment in Zuccotti Park, Lower Manhattan, last Tuesday, destroying its free makeshift library, it unwittingly joined a sad and brutal roll call of fanatics that stretches back many centuries.
The NYPD became just the newest member of an infamous club that includes the Taliban, German Nazis, the Khmer Rouge, Imperial Japanese forces, The British Empire, the Catholic Church, and an assortment of despots and bloody occupation armies across time, religions, cultures and ideologies.
All at one time or another, have been singled out by history for being responsible of the destruction of millions of books. The volumes will never be recovered or even identified, and those who did away with them exist now mainly under the general banner of scourge. But what has been lost to mankind certainly goes way beyond their horrific Continue reading