#OccupyWallSt: 24 arrested at Citibank, closing their bank accounts

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171 Responses to “#OccupyWallSt: 24 arrested at Citibank, closing their bank accounts”

  1. Haz 0 says:

    She apparently was part of the group inside; when asked if she was inside, she rightfully exclaimed that she was a customer. Then an unmarked official picked her up and placed her inside the building. This is shameful and disgusting and should be brought to court for violating civil rights.

    • Kent says:

      And it will have its day in court…. and the video has served its purpose on YouTube… so why all the outrage?  The point of these stunts is to draw attention by knowingly breaking the law (trespassing), so why do people go crazy when it succeeds and people are arrested?  Wasn’t that the point to begin with?

      • Will Sanders says:

        Outrage IS the point.   And, are you as a customer, breaking the law while conducting business with an company with whom you have contracted to handle your financial affairs?  Are you a customer or an employer.  I feel that I EMPLOY a bank, or a plumber or a caterer or a carpenter, not the other way around.

        • Kent says:

          My point wasn’t whether or not the protesters have a valid point, but more the fact that they should be enlightened enough to realize what they are doing is technically illegal and they very well should expect to be arrested. Especially in downtown New York during this movement, so spare me the drama! It overshadows the very issues you were arrested trying to promote.

        • Although you’re right, you have far more rights as an employee than an employer, so I’d keep that argument to yourself :p

          • Daniel says:

            Although you’re right, you have far more rights as an employee than an employer, so I’d keep that argument to yourself :p

            Offcially?  Sure.  Realistically?  Not so much.  Try researching the latter half of the nineteenth century and the beginning of the 20th. 

            The short answer: employees need more rights because employers have more leverage.

    • jim b says:

      You have not yet figured out that you have no civil rights. You are property of the established government and your lives and your property are not yours, but the legal holdings of the government. Deposit your paycheck, pay the fees, and you will be allowed to go your way. This is America. You don’t need civil rights in paradise.

  2. TimRowledge says:

    Anyway, closing your account is now a go-to-jail offense.

    Wasn’t it always? I mean, that’s pretty much treason, right there.

  3. geekcalif says:

    Xeni.  This is freakin’ awful!!!!  What the hell are these cops doing??? 

  4. rhinoman says:

    What happened?
    Closing your Citibank account is the perfect way to get their attention. But I suspect someone in the bank seriously overreacted when they saw the group and called the cops. 

  5. Al Corrupt says:

    “The next world war will be between the people and the banks.”

    • Phil Fot says:

      And the gunfire will be happening any day now.

      I remember the all of the Weathermen bombings and shootings circa 1970.

      There is even greater potential for violence now as the police and banking institutions have begun to utilize direct, preemptive measures to ensure their authority against the general population.

      This will soon escalate into a dark time.

      J. D. Robb (Nora Roberts) describes “The Urban Wars,” in her series of “In Death” novels. I think Ms. Roberts may be prescient.

  6. I’m shocked!! I can’t believe this is happening in our country. Since when could you be arrested for closing out your own account? Something must be done to stop these banks and it must be done NOW!! I am embarrassed to be a part of a country that would allow this kind of treatment. She showed a check book and they arrested her? This is insane behavior and the bank should be held accountable for this! It is against our Constitutional Rights. It makes me sick to see this kind of behavior done to peaceable people who are not breaking the law!!

  7. moz moz says:

    The more outrageous something is, the longer I wait for the whole story

  8. satchellmr says:

    This is one of those stories where I’d like some more information on…I’d actually suggest that the title of this blog post be modified actually based off of this blurb:

    “Police say most of the people arrested were detained for trespassing after they ignored a request by the bank to leave.” – The AP via the Wall Street Journal - http://online.wsj.com/article/AP90d793c347f8436a99652195cff19b0c.html?mod=WSJ_article_comments#articleTabs%3Darticle

    So technically these people were arrested for *trespassing* and not attempting to close their bank accounts.

    Citibank is in the legal right to deny anyone service and ask them to leave the premises.  Thats the main fact here.  Regardless of if they are current customers or even how they are acting.  

    It may not be the most friendly way (to say the least) to deal with your customers- but they can if they want…

    • Niel de Beaudrap says:

      So the lady, who was outside; the customer. She was still tresspassing then?

      • satchellmr says:

        Yeah see that’s where I’d like some more information- I don’t know how she plays into the whole thing or who’s word to take.

    • Sign Ahead says:

      I can understand the right to refuse service. But I’m not sure what I would do if a bank refused to close my account and asked me to leave. Even if it’s legally correct, it looks really bad for the bank and is a great way to escalate an already tense situation.

      • satchellmr says:

        Right- I completely agree- 

        Just to make things clear here:  I’m not siding with the bank or the banks actions- I’m just explaining that it is technically legal for them to do what they did.

      • Stephen Rice says:

        Absolutely. That’s how around-the-block bank runs start, isn’t it? Someone goes to the bank to close their account and, for whatever reason, the bank doesn’t let them.

    • Stephen Rice says:

      “Citibank is in the legal right to deny anyone service and ask them to leave the premises. ”

      I’m sorry, this is totally off topic. I think it’s really charming how this implies that you can have a ‘legal wrong’, as in the wrong to bear arms. I think that’s a lovely idea.

    • JonathanM says:

      “Citibank is in the legal right to deny anyone service and ask them to leave the premises?” Sounds like the best reason yet for everyone to take their money elsewhere.  If the bank won’t let you have your own money because they essentially don’t feel like it, then they don’t deserve to have their customer’s money or trust.

      • Guest says:

        If Citibank denies you service when you try to close your account at the Wall St. branch, go to another branch and close your account. They could be asking everyone to leave because the power is out, or the computers are down, or the bank is full of protesters and the manager has (possibly incorrectly) decided it’s unsafe for employees and customers. It doesn’t matter. It’s their right to close the bank for any reason they can’t or don’t want to do business…. even if it is a PR disaster for Citibank.

        BUT… If you have a bunch of protesters vocally refusing to leave private property when asked (thereby removing any and all defense of not knowing they were asked to leave), it makes the whole movement look bad. And unfortunately, if innocent customers DID get caught up in the arrests, the blame is on the NYPD and OWS. Not Citibank.

      • satchellmr says:

        I couldn’t agree more with you.
        Though I would argue that Citibank did not comply with these people’s request due to the fact that they were causing a disturbance on their private property rather than that they “essentially [didn't] feel like it”.

        • Daniel says:

          Though I would argue that Citibank did not comply with these people’s request due to the fact that they were causing a disturbance on their private property rather than that they “essentially [didn't] feel like it”.

          Of course you would argue that.  Your tireless droning about the letter of the law in this situation leaves little doubt about what sort of person you are.  Salvador Dali made a wonderful illustration:

          Mind of the Average Bureaucrat

          Never mind that “causing a disturbance” is a judgment call that was made by the bank employees, not the protesters.  “I’d like to cancel my account.”  “Sir, you’re creating a disturbance, please leave.”

          And GOD are you boring. This it internet. Say it once, all your previous comments are there for reading.

          • satchellmr says:

            “Never mind that “causing a disturbance” is a judgment call that was made by the bank employees, not the protesters.  “I’d like to cancel my account.”  “Sir, you’re creating a disturbance, please leave.”

            “We entered the building chanting. Inside, a man began by announcing that we were there to have a short teach-in regarding our student loan experiences.”
            Source: http://gawker.com/5850398/a-protesters-account-of-this-weekends-citibank-arrests

            Need I say more?

    • crashgrab says:

      So if I’m a customer who wants to close my account Citibank can refuse closing my account and have me arrested?! If I’m standing outside the bank calling lawyers for my friends inside they can have a random stranger, not even a police officer, drag me in the building so they can claim I’m trespassing?! Can all businesses do this now when I want to stop doing business with them? This is outrageous!

    • crashgrab says:

      How are customers suppose to close their accounts without entering the bank?

  9. Welcome to ShitiBank, can we arrest you?

  10. 10xor01 says:

    Looks like the banks and cops are getting pretty nervous.  I hope that bodes well for change.

    • Lemoutan says:

      Looks like the banks and cops are getting pretty nervous.  I hope that bodes well for change.
      I wonder. From an outsider’s point of view in the UK, I’m just getting the impression that the NYPD is a gang of amateur, emotionally undisciplined bunch of jerks indistinguishable from a private army in a third-world dictatorship. And I don’t really mean to offend any third-world dictators out there by saying that.

      • I’m in the UK too, and it seems to me at least that the BoingBoing audience is well aware of this fact; that the rest of the world laughs at their ‘freedom’ (not that ours is any better).

        It’s this allusive 1%, the brainwashed masses, and all those other Proud American Citizens that are under the impression they live in a fantastic democracy and that protesters are terrorists.  Unfortunately that’s the majority.  We have the same issue here in the UK, just of a different flavour – we can protest, but the majority just roll their eyes and wonder why all these unwashed hippies are so angry at anything other than immigration which is going to destroy our culturally rich, beautifully diverse country.

        For that I blame the media. For the wars and global corruption I blame the banks – there’s more than one bad guy. The government? They’re just the spokespeple of these organisations, voted in by us; influenced by those that control them. All we can do is try and change things for the better and be thankful we’re not somewhere far worse (as there are many, many examples of places that are worse).

  11. Tommy Timefishblue says:

    If this is legal, it’s a problem with the law, not the people who are trying to get their own money out of a bank.

  12. joeposts says:

    Can’t wait to see the “legitimate” reasons for this insane police overreaction.

  13. Treeswing says:

    I’ll also await final judgement until the full story solidifies, but I do take issue with the above statements that cititbank can simple “refuse service” at any time, even when someone wishes to close their account. So now what? Totally fine that *whenever* anyone wants to close their account, a bank can simple say they refuse service because of some bad timing on your part, or because you are making a statement about it or some other random reason?

    Sounds like the ultimate lock-in. Good thing the law is on their side!

    • satchellmr says:

      Well they CAN refuse service to anyone legally but if you feel as though it’s being done in an inappropriate matter I think the FTC deals with issues like that.

      But in this case Citibank refused service because the people were allegedly causing a disturbance within private property.

  14. Steve Mackin says:

    Xeni, They got off better then customers in Jakarta http://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2011/04/04/more-citibank-employees-arrested-murder-case.html

  15. Jim Saul says:

    Not that actual law has anything to do with bank behavior, but if they do refuse service to a legit customer with proof of ID and authorization, who is attempting to withdraw funds, they are under absolute reporting requirements to the FDIC.

    Failure to file that paperwork (within a statutory period – 10 business days, I believe) suspends the entire bank’s eligibility to participate in FDIC fund guarantee programs.

  16. Tess Alexanian says:

    Context (from the Guardian blog- http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/blog/2011/oct/15/occupy-wall-street-times-square?newsfeed=true  and I’ve seen it in a few other sources): the demonstrators inside the bank had gone there to close their accounts as an act of protest. The manager of the bank declined their requests and asked them to leave. Incident above ensued.

    So, the police action shown in the video is awfully heavy-handed, but many of the people there were Citibank customers, trying to close their accounts. Although I don’t know the woman in the video’s relationship to the protest, it seems reasonable that the police assumed she was taking part.

    • But it’s not illegal to close your bank account. There is nothing reasonable here. 

      • satchellmr says:

        Right- but it is illegal to trespass when asked to leave.

        • Antinous / Moderator says:

          Right- but it is illegal to trespass when asked to leave.

          That would be a matter for a court to decide. They have your money. Why is it legal for them to throw you out when you want to retrieve it?

          • satchellmr says:

            Well no the court has nothing to do with determining the legality of trespassing- When you are asked to leave private property it is trespassing no matter the circumstance.  They can have you removed from private property regardless of the fact that they have your money.  

            Though the bank CAN get in trouble with the FTC and FDIC if they feel as though the bank was acting inappropriately.

          • Stephen Rice says:

            Absolutely. Holding your money until you ask for it back and then giving you it back is kind of what a bank does, apparently until now.

          • satchellmr says:

            No trespassing is pretty straight forward- if you are on private property and you are asked to leave- and you don’t- it is trespassing.

            The fact that they have your money is irrelevant- This matter would have to be brought up with the FTC and/or the FDIC.

    • SedanChair says:

      It only seems reasonable to someone with an authoritarian mindset.

    • rattypilgrim says:

      Tess, it doesn’t matter what the reason was for those Citi Bank customers to close their accounts. And Citi Bank has no right to deny them access to their funds.

      Have you ever closed an account at a bank? If so, would you have expected police force there to stop you and or arrest you?

      And what is wrong with protest? These people were Citi Bank customers. They were trying to exercise their right to protest Citi Bank by closing their accounts? Do you really think THEY were in the wrong? If so, I can only say how much I pity your servitude and willingness to become a serf in the fiefdom the 1% is so desperately trying to impose on us and future generations.

      • satchellmr says:

        They DO NOT have the right to deny someone access to their funds but they DO reserve the right to deny access to their building if they feel there is a disturbance.  

        No matter how unhappy you are about the circumstances or the reasons for which they were asked to leave- it is still trespassing.

        • Holly McLachlan says:

          You have been making this assertion — repeatedly — throughout the evening. However trespassing on private property has little to do with the events in this video. A woman was outside the bank — not trespassing, and appears to have been manhandled back into the foyer of the building for reasons that have nothing to do with any failure on her part to comply with a legitimate request to leave.
          Why have you continued to make assertions about “trespassing” in regards to this person, this post, and this video? It looks as though you are working to promote the false idea that she was somehow guilty of an act that…. is not in evidence in this video. The possibility that some other persons were engaged in trespassing at this branch does not matter. She was not.
          You have been relentlessly over-representing Citibank’s position in this comments thread.  Why have you been doing so?

          • satchellmr says:

            >Holly McLachlan

            I have continued to make this assertion because 23 of the 24 WERE trespassing.  How does that have “little to do with the events of this video”?

            As for the woman outside- I have mentioned in earlier comments that I do not have enough information on her specific case to make a conclusion. (See comment numbers 12 and 15 above).  

            Additionally I believe we can not (and should not) form an opinion or conclusion of this situation based off of a 2.5 minute YouTube video that was shot from one viewpoint.  
            We don’t have the whole story here and it is irresponsible and wrong to claim that we do.

            I also believe that I haven’t been “over-representing Citibank’s position in this comment thread”
            I have been explaining the law- and I have been doing so –repeatedly– because people are –repeatedly — misunderstanding it and how it relates to this situation.

  17. kmoser says:

    This sounds remarkably similar to the recent Smithsonian incident: protestors cause officials to panic; officials kick everybody out; “legitimate” visitors cry foul. Sorry, when the s**t hits the fan and authorities will kick everybody out, there are no legit visitors;  anybody who sticks around risks being arrested for failure to follow LEO orders. Want to close your bank account? Fine, but don’t do it when the cops are actively kicking people out of the building, lest you get caught up in the collateral damage.

    • Wait, so the protestors are wrong?

      At least now the banks have figured out a way to keep all of your money and you’re not too fussed about fighting it.  Good news for you.  Always remember, do as the police say, they are your leaders.

    • OtherMichael says:

      And how was the customers’ legitimate attempts to close their accounts and the panic felt by officials cuased by the customers?

      Go ahead, call the customers protesters — it doesn’t change anything.

      The officials themselves felt panic. They panicked.

      Don’t attempt to shift responsibility, here. The fact that the protesters were wearing short skirts has no bearing on the actions of the officials.

  18. cinerik says:

    Get a grip. One or possibly more bank employees ask the police to remove people and you’re advocating random shootings?  Pathetic.

    • teapot says:

      If you read my comment carefully, you would know I am not suggesting shooting *people* but *windows*. Maybe it’s some kind of crazy twilight-zone where you live, but here banks are usually empty and closed at night time. I’m saying they need to make it hurt for the bank financially and destruction of material goods is a simple place to start. Using guns is a simple way to do so at distance with less risk of being caught. Would you do your banking at a branch with the front windows blown out?

      • What disingenuous crap. I guess you’ll defend your “the cops need bats to their heads” statement by claiming you were speaking of the animal next?

        People like you is why we need cops to begin with.

        • teapot says:

          The cops don’t seem to be too worried about wielding bats to enforce compliance against protesters who are showing no signs of violent resistance. It’s not quite shotguns from the top of a truck but it’s in the same vein. The NYPD have demonstrated that they aren’t afraid to use force when they (morally or legally) shouldn’t. There has so far been no repercussions for any of those officers who have overstepped the line and that is part of the problem.

          • Nothing of that supports your position on shooting up buildings and assaulting people. Want to pull up more strawmen?

          • teapot says:

            You might want to look up the definition of the strawman argument. How did I misrepresent your position?

          • By presenting a defense against the position “cops are infallible beings beyond reproach”, which no one was taking. They do bad things. The system doesn’t work. Shit’s f-ed up.
            Now how does that support you advocating violence?

          • teapot says:

            The system (played by the cops) responds to peaceful, organised protest with violence. The system protects the officers involved who are not punished, suggesting to other officers that extreme response is acceptable and beyond reproach. I suggest responding in kind to violence, because the system (which is supposed to protect us from violent and illegal repression) is not doing its job. Tell me that Bologna doesn’t deserve a faceful of mace, or that the cop in yesterday’s video doesn’t deserve a lunging punch in the face when he’s not expecting it.

          • Your arguments for the “eye for an eye” mentality of punishment are so convincing, I’m now convinced we should move toward a more draconian legal and law enforcement system! Surely this will solve the problem of an overuse of force.. wait, what?

          • teapot says:

            Two words which America seems to have a passion for that instantly discredit the principle behind what you are saying: death penalty. You can’t preach from a moral pedestal when your country’s punishments are draconian.

          • herrnichte says:

            If we can only assert our opinions if our whole bloody country isn’t horrid in some way then only the New Zealanders will be allowed to talk   …and then you just know it’ll involve sheep in some fashion.

          • There was a minor sonic boom of that passing over your head, apparently. It seems clear that you’re sticking to your position, badly thought out and even worse defended as it is. If the responses from this thread haven’t dissuaded you yet, you can’t be helped.

            Hopefully it’s all internet keyboard jockey bluster and we won’t be seeing your face in the papers.

          • teapot says:

            It’s OK, don’t feel like you need to actually respond to any of the points I raised. Your idea of a discussion seems to be you providing people with your wisdom.

          • Jim Saul says:

            It being late on a Saturday night, perhaps you’re a bit drunk and would be embarassed in the morning to reread yourself advocating turning a peaceful protest into a shooting spree.

            Or you’re agitating.  Or trolling.

            Or maybe you’re really working yourself up to an act of violence.

            Whatever.  Just shut the fuck up about it.  We get the point.

          • teapot says:

            I’m one of those things.

            Thanks for spending your time to add such important points to the discussion. This thread wouldn’t have been the same without your insight.

          • menton says:

            @teapot.
            Please ask yourself what you want most: actually change the unjust system or feel the delight of revenge as bank windows or cop faces are smashed?

            Because violent action against a force supremely more capable of physical action is counterproductive. So even if this banker or that cop would in principle deserve a physical response (I’d say even that is a very controversial view and at the end not defensible; we’re all implicated and prodded in the system at hand in various ways including cops) that would still be a seriously wrong action for simple and well-known reasons of what is and isn’t effective in building popular movements for system change.

            Occupywallst is a wonderful, fragile thing. Children painting signs, people of all ages, music and joy mixed with resolute enough-is-enough-conviction. A violent turn would shatter all that.

            I’d like to hear you, or anyone else pondering violence, answer this question: If some protesters turned to violent action (shooting bank windows with guns) how would the following groups react? Would their reaction be one that increases or decreases the chance of system change?

            a. police
            b. politicians
            c. mass media
            d. the other protesters
            e. the general public

            My answers: decrease decrease decrease decrease decrease.

            I’d also like to know if you yourself have been at the occupation or participated actively in similar grass root, deliberative democratic protests? I’m sorry if I misrepresent you but it sounds like you’re detached from the actual protests and thinking up “lone avenger” scenarios by yourself that are out of touch with actual social movement dynamics.

            You also miss a very central factor: the NYCGA has a participatory democratic structure. If you want your plan put to action in the name of occupy wallst then you have only one option: go down there and bring up your suggestion in a democratic manner at the general assembly. We’ll see what answer the deliberative democratic process will output.

          • I agree with taking a nonviolent route, it isn’t likely to do anyone any favours; but this statement “Because violent action against a force supremely more capable of physical action” is false.  There are far more armed, strong, angry non-police, than there are police.  The riots in London (which were justified, but exploited) showed just how helpless the law makers are when enough people say ‘enough is enough’ (or in this case, ‘I want a telly’ – even if the catalyst was heinous).

          • menton says:

            Hi Nathan. Protesters outnumber police, for sure. But a violent turn, even one that temporarily push police and others back, would soon lead to ramped up violence and either chaotic destruction where a lot of innocent people will get seriously injured or killed (counterproductive, and wrong in itself) or authorities clamping down hard through the national guard or similar military grade force to curb all protests and likely harm and harass many innocents as a side effect (also highly counterproductive for the movement).  So maybe we’re talking past each other by thinking of long and short term effects respectively?

            I’m skeptical to the London riots being justified. Can violent reaction to oppression sometimes be in itself justified? If we for the moment ignore the long term consequences then yes, sometimes. But in the actual circumstance at hand there are real and very negative consequences from violent tactics. That makes such violence all things considered unjustified. The important thing is to keep the eyes on the prize: system change.

          • Tommy Timefishblue says:

            Why do you think that non-violence will work here?

          • Mister44 says:

            Why do you think violence will work here?

            Not logical. All that would happen is discredit the movement and give cause for the PD to bring the hammer down in the name of public safety.

            Look at Mexico and the cartels. They didn’t start cutting peoples heads off and leaving them in front of schools until a US backed Mexico escalated the violence.

          • Cutting off heads is a non-violent response???? The drug cartels’ approach seems to working remarkably well for them. They appear to own Mexico at this point, and also have the apparent support of our own secret police, who have been supplying their weapons.

          • Mister44 says:

            I think you got my example backwards.

            Mexico gov. get violent with cartel <—– cartel comes down hard on the Mexican Gov.

            Same as

            OWS protesters get violent with police/gov <—– police/gov comes down hard on protestors.

            Maybe not the perfect analogy, but if OWS goes violent, it will be the end of it.

            ETA – The point was the cartel was relatively non-violent until provoked. The US gov/police are relatively non-violent, but if they are provoked they will over react.

          • Tommy Timefishblue says:

            I really don’t think that these protesters being violent or non-violent will work. All they’ll do is raise consciousness a bit and maybe that’ll lead to something, but I’m very pessimistic about it. I don’t think, though, that, if something eventually does work, it’ll be non-violent.

          • Mister44 says:

            I agree with you except for your last sentence. At least, I hope I’m right about it being wrong.

          • A fellow named Walter Mischel did this fascinating study a while ago that involved some little kids and some marshmallows…

      • cinerik says:

        1) Random shots from a distance could easily kill a security guard who happened to be patrolling.  2) I can’t think of many things more likely to discredit the movement and give the authorities an excuse to rain down all holy hell upon the protesters.  Any move like that would justify labeling them terrorists in the public’s eyes.  It is an unbelievably stupid idea, escalating the protests from the wonderful peaceful events that they are, through to mindless firearm thuggery with no intervening steps.

        • teapot says:

          1) At 3am?
          2) Because NYC is a tranquil gun-free zone akin to Bambi’s lands before the hunters moved in – amirite? Apart from the target being a bank, how would any of it be linkable to the protests specifically, and what responses would the authorities even be able to mount that they aren’t already doing?
          3) I don’t like guns either (check my previous railing on BB every time there is some horrible killing spree), that’s why I included the good ol’ fashioned brick option. Timeless, classic and smashing… but far more involved and much easier to get caught.

          • cinerik says:

            1) You are aware of how ‘security’ works, right?  People watching things while others aren’t there is a pretty standard way of doing things.
            2) How much of a leap do you think it would take the media/politicians etc. to link shootings of banks to a mass protest about banks…  It wouldn’t take a genius to make that link, would it?  Credibility hard earned would be lost.  And there is *so* much more that the police and authorities could be doing.  Imagine them wielding the power of the Patriot act at the protesters.  You really aren’t thinking this through.
            3) If you don’t like guns why in all hell did you suggest it.

            I’m not going to continue this conversation.  It’s pointless.  You suggested a stupid, stupid thing.  Walk away from it.

      • John Stephens says:

        And when you take out one of the cleaning crew, what then?  “Sorry, I didn’t mean it” won’t put someone’s skull back together, and good intentions can’t raise the dead.  If you’re going to shoot, shoot to kill.  If you don’t want to kill, DON’T SHOOT.

      • A Nonny Moose says:

        Much as I hate to jump on, that’s a really boneheaded plan. Vandalism may not be as bad as violence against people but it would still be a strike against what the protesters are doing. Are you that guy who tried to start a riot at the Smithsonian the other day?

  19. sideunes says:

    Anyone still questioning the motives of Occupy Wall Street…here is your answer in color, as plain as day. 
    http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2011/10/income-gain-distribution-1917-81-82-2000-2001-08/

  20. herrnichte says:

    Here’s a wild (and poorly thought out) notion:  all those who are sympathetic to OWS who are too ‘busy’ to go shout/sit in a tent in their city’s center should protest by closing their (big national branch) bank accounts and transferring their funds to small credit unions.

  21. Nonviolence is the only tool available to the weak. Gandhi said something like that. You fight a military force without enough people and/or guns and you won’t win.

    The beauty of non-violent protest (and I’m really surprised this is
    working for an issue as abstract as the concentration of political and
    economic power) is that it makes visible the oppression that is hidden
    within the system and it makes it clear who are oppressors and who are
    oppressed. When the protesters start throwing punches then they can be arrested on legitimate charges and the inherent violence and inequity of the system becomes invisible again.

    Also, there is little sympathy in America for people that hurt cops especially amongst the demographics this movement needs to recruit, i.e. poor whites.

    You need to cut the revolutionary-glory shit and think through the brass tacks of the situation.

    • Marc Mielke says:

      Nonviolence only works when people give a shit about authority looking bad. Other than this website, nobody really cares that the NYPD seems to be a gang of thugs only marginally more honorable or worthy of respect than Los Zetas. 

  22. E T says:

    Citibank Statement Regarding Protester Arrests

    http://www.citigroup.com/citi/press/2011/111015a.htm

  23. Will Sanders says:

    If one if a share holder in company, can one be excluded from the business facilities of that company?

  24. BBNinja says:

    Damn Mongorians, try to protest my ShitiBank!

  25. hankchapot says:

    First, who are all the cops in suits? Pivate security? Don’t NYPD have to wear a badge or name tag? Second, these white shirts are in leadership and may have been off the street for a while. I think they are reliving their ass-kicking days from the seventies and eighties, before they got promoted to desk jobs.

  26. Will Sanders says:

    Anyone who thinks violence is going to help ANYBODY please go stand in the corner and do not leave until the adults have things sorted out…..

  27. BarBarSeven says:

    As much as I want to sympathize with this splinter group of protestors, what they did really discredits the movement they are a part of. Banks are needed—don’t be silly and pretend they don’t—but they need to change. And the regulations that need to keep them in line need to be enforced.

    Storming a bank and not leaving when asked to is trespassing and at the end of the day, this kind of stuff brings no sympathy to the movement… Which is saying a lot because I am in NYC and they have TONS of sympathy.

    It’s time to dump the “action” theatrics like this because you are all a part of a much bigger “action”; don’t sell yourself short. And any idiot who thinks attacking banks physically and with violence can “help” needs to be shunned away… That kind of nonsense helps no one.

    • Tommy Timefishblue says:

      It’s a good thing, then, that no one was attacking the bank physically and with violence.

    • Banks are needed; banks like CitiGroup are not.

      There is a thing known as responsible lending; there are banks that don’t fund wars and corruption.  Citi bank is not one of these banks.

      Rather than defending the position, go educate yourself on why banks are actually, quite evil.  And how there are organisations that will happily look after your money without issuing toxic loans and buying AK47′s for terrorists.

    • Daniel says:

      As much as I want to sympathize with this splinter group of protestors, what they did really discredits the movement they are a part of. Banks are needed—don’t be silly and pretend they don’t—but they need to change. And the regulations that need to keep them in line need to be enforced.

      This is too simplistic.  Deposit institutions are needed, but they don’t need to be (and shouldn’t be) involved in so-called “investment banking.”  They also don’t need to be dangerously large.  Put these ideas together and you might get the notion that the best way to protest big, dangerous banks that engage in shady investment banking nonsense is to withdraw all your money from such institutions and put them in small deposit institutions that need your money more, will treat you with more respect, and won’t try to get you arrested when you try to get your money back from them.

      So I think these people actually credit the movement by trying to do something nonviolent and legal that creates positive change (decreasing the soundness of big, dangerous bank and improving the health of small, community-focused deposit instutions).  Remember that “customers” with checkings and savings account at a bank aren’t really customers, they are creditors.  They are people who are owed money by the bank.  I think Citi is discredited by mistreating people to whom it owed money.

      Storming a bank and not leaving when asked to is trespassing and at the end of the day, this kind of stuff brings no sympathy to the movement… Which is saying a lot because I am in NYC and they have TONS of sympathy.

      It’s time to dump the “action” theatrics like this because you are all a part of a much bigger “action”; don’t sell yourself short. And any idiot who thinks attacking banks physically and with violence can “help” needs to be shunned away… That kind of nonsense helps no one.

      Going to a bank at which one is a customer and demanding that one’s account be closed is not “storming a bank.”  (I love when people use metaphors to compare nonviolent actions to violent ones.  It’s like “militant atheists.”  Clearly, those who use such metaphors are counting on readers who do not understand metaphors.)  It is an entirely legal, non-violent, effective form of protest. 

      The branch manager, security, and police overreacted.  They’re the ones that look bad here.

  28. Will Sanders says:

    If one is a leader in an organization such as the NYPD ” off the street” is no excuse. Persons in such a position are expected to be able to prevent such circumstances and defuse situations, not escalate them. No excuses cover the actions of those shown in the videos.

  29. Will Sanders says:

    Teapot, to be frank, if you think that violence will accomplish anything positive on this occasion; you are an idiot. Violence is quick, justice is measured.

  30. calebjc says:

    Credit unions rock! I’ve had my Platinum Visa there and all my banking for years, whatever town I’m in. Great loans, better service, not evil. The big banks suck!

  31. Will Sanders says:

    We, the 99%, MUST be calm, rational, reasonable and measured in our actions. A dramatic action might appeal to the actor in all of us but when taking action against the ensconced powers our actions must be beyond reproach. Sooner or later, usually sooner, the powers that be will soon shown to be fools. We must NEVER give anyone the opportunity to say ” See? They started it!”

    • bigmike7 says:

      ‘Sooner or later, usually sooner, the powers that be will soon shown to
      be fools. We must NEVER give anyone the opportunity to say ” See? They
      started it!” ‘

      I’m not sure if you’re criticizing the demonstration at the bank or responding to Teapot’s call for shooting out the bank windows.

      I agree that shooting at a bank over this particular injustice is stupid– a great way to waste any goodwill that has been built up. It would be more of a disproportionate reaction than an assertive, controlled action.

      But I question the reasoning about not wanting to appear that we “started it”.  Started what, exactly? Started any of the following?:

      Using public money to assasinate labor organizers and clergy in Central America? Supporting–or creating– with our military violent and ruthless dictators that carry out the wishes of the multinationals? Infringing our rights to peaceably gather by making us ask for permits or penning us like farm animals in ‘free-speech zones’? Making us compete for jobs with people living in countries that kill labor leaders and employ child-slaves? Using our military to protect and facilitate the cocaine trade? Creating a ‘drug war’ against the poor that buy the crack cocaine intended for them? Making prisons and youth boot-camps a for-profit venture in the phony ‘war’ on drugs? Starting a war in Afghanistan to keep the opium poppies growing for the sake of maintaining liquidity in international banks?  Starting another war in Iraq based on slick falsifications and psy-ops over WMD’s? Using the 911 ‘terrorist’ attacks as a psy-ops operation against the citizens of this country for the purpose of scaring us into ceding any expectations of civil liberties? Making 90 year old women take off their Depends or demanding we allow ourselves to be groped at airports if we wish to travel? Giving corporations the same rights as guaranteed in the Bill of Rights while denying ours ever existed? Reducing citizens to “consumers” while looking the other way as financial corporations destroyed the remaining fabric of our economy and livilihoods with mortgage and securities frauds?

      This list could just go on and on. Not even getting into who orchestrated 911. Or why we are borrowing money from banks–hopelessly indebting the next several generations– when we could just print it ourselves.

      Sorry if this is coming off as shrill or soapboxey. It’s just that I really tire of this view that if we ask nicely, the same people that carried out everything delineated above will meet our requests just because. They will not. This war on the people was started long ago and it has been ramping up exponentially. The United States of America as a meaningful entity that exists to serve a common interest is OVER. We, the people, must re-assume our rights as sovereign citizens, not ask for them. To do this, we will need to TAKE and we will need to take OVER the instruments of control. Note how even discussing or thinking about printing our own money as opposed to borrowing is deemed so radical by our handlers in the press that OWSers would be laughed off the stage by even requesting it. We cannot request our rights back.  There can be no gentle transitioning or re-esstablishment. We will have to take and I really don’t see how that is done without acting outside of the law.

      Maybe I misunderstand or lack imagination. If someone has a handle on a peaceable roadmap from park demonstrations to dismantling global corporate control, please enlighten me. Or maybe we’re just trying to negotiate for easier terms on student loan reconsolidations?

      • Will Sanders says:

        “Started it”. What I should have said is any reactionary group must not be seen to ‘start’  or ‘finish’ any violent act. The root cause can be addressed most effectively if the aggrieved party can be seen as the oppressed rather than the aggressor. Your statement is eloquent and addresses many of my own concerns. One thing at a time. 

        • bigmike7 says:

          Well, yes, but setting out to destroy the influence of the financial institutions that wield the power of the media giants might be incompatible with the privilege of being ‘seen as the oppressed’.

          This oppressed/victimization narrative has been worked over so much by opinion-makers past that it’s really impossible to construct a message within it that doesn’t get lost in the well-worn grooves of anti-progressive sleeper memes: Rich, spoiled kids or stinky hippies who’ve never had to work a day in
          their life using fancy iPhones from mommy and daddy to attack the people
          that actually create wealth in this country. The usual
          PETA/anarchist suspects. Why don’t they have Jesus signs? They aren’t
          oppressed. They want to tax you. They hate America.

          Without a doubt, smashing is windows–as happened in the Seattle WTO protests, would be a disaster. But can we politely request to no longer be enslaved and carry this out through existing laws? This body of laws, Patriot Act being only the most heinous and recent offender, cannot be fixed through the same corrupt instruments that created it. At some point, progressives have to accept the responsibility that comes with insight. And today, this responsibility is to dismantle a system that is destroying the world and enslaving people everywhere. We must not back away from this responsibility. I don’t know what the next step is, but there will have to be a next step. It won’t be easy and Nancy Grace won’t be rooting for us.

    • Lemoutan says:

      We, the 99%, MUST be calm, rational, reasonable and measured in our actions …
      Yes, but -
      We must NEVER give anyone the opportunity to say ” See? They started it!”
      - they’ll say it anyway.

    • niktemadur says:

      Agreed, please allow me to elaborate.

      I admire Gandhi’s gesture of marching towards “Her Majesty’s” salt fields, then taking a handful of salt “owned” by the “Her Majesty”.  That was an important, symbolic bit of theatrics every Indian could understand and rally behind, with a critical element Gandhi was careful to adhere to:  the salt field was not mobbed.

      For years now, websites like http://moveyourmoneyproject.org/ have been around.  Even the state government of New Mexico shifted its’ monetary resources to local banks/credit unions a couple of years ago.

      My question, my agreement with you, is:  Why now?  Why wait 3 years after the crash, until the YouTube Network is watching? Why wait 12 years after deregulation took place?  Change can and should be a private thing, but it seems some people need a loud cue to participate in it, while most won’t participate at all, and a minority have already done their honorable duty.

  32. Will Sanders says:

    Baaaaaa  means no!
    Sorry, thought some humor was called for, even bad humor.

  33. bcsizemo says:

    The obvious answer lies in the mid 80′s.  You know before direct deposit was standard, and cashing your checks on Friday was a real thing.  When you couldn’t over draw a check card, because if you didn’t have the money it was declined.  When cell phones where huge and only used by people who REALLY needed them.  When gas pumps didn’t have credit terminals, and people pumped first and paid in cash second. 

    The 80′s.  The solution to all our banking problems today.  That and the Bank of My Mattress, where all my cash currently lives.

  34. dewey206 says:

    Umm, folks, people seem to be missing something basic here, especially in light of CitiBank’s statement about what was going on. Citibank states they asked people to leave. Putting aside those still in the bank, that woman clearly DID leave the building. She is outside, talking to the people inside. You can hear her, along with the other woman, giving instructions to those inside. Whether or not she was part of the protest, the salient fact here is she is a customer who complied with the request to leave. She is outside the building, standing on a public sidewalk.

    And then the police physically grab her and throw her back into the building.

    This, folks, is KIDNAPPING. That cop, in front of cameras, kidnapped someone who had already complied with both the bank and police orders to leave the building.

    Just sayin’….

  35. Will Sanders says:

    Not the ’80′s! I am not sure big hair, parachute pants and ‘Members Only ‘ jackets are worth it…..wait. Give me big hair vs big business anytime.

  36. Eddie Perkins says:

    I wish I had a Citibank account so I could close it. But, I don’t. And being unemployed, I wouldn’t have anything to put in it anyway. 

  37. Will Sanders says:

    dewey206, you are correct. The actions taken by the NYPD are wrong. We must wait and let the courts fix this, hasty  action taken by the public will only compromise our position that we are right and the powers that be are not. I would wager that the officers involved in this are not very happy with the orders they have been issued.

    • Daniel says:

      I would wager that the officers involved in this are not very happy with the orders they have been issued.

      This is something a lot of people seem to be missing.  Why is the war on drugs still going on despite the fact that it’s been a demonstrable failure in every possible respect?  I submit that it’s because the war on drugs turns many civilians (those with a less authoritarian bent) and police against each other.  I’ve gotten the same impression from some of the police tactics deployed against Occupy protesters — tactics that seem designed to force confrontation between protesters and police rather than promoting public order or safety (obviously, tactics that force confrontations between police and large crowds are not conducive to either goal — cui bono?). 

      Remember, folks (especially teapot), cops are also the 99%.

  38. teapot says:

    We must wait and let the courts fix this
    Sweet, now all the people involved will just have to waste their time and resources fighting crap and proving their innocence. If the court finds that Citibank did anything inappropriate I’m sure they will be punished for wasting police resources.

    • satchellmr says:

      They don’t have to prove their innocence….

      It’s innocent till *proven guilty*

      Plus thats how the legal system works in the United States- the court system takes a long time and was designed to do so.

      • catherinecc says:

        > satchellmr

         You’re wonderfully naive. Virtually all cases result in plea deals because prosecutors punish people who refuse to take them with additional charges. Want to plead not guilty? Fine, we’ll fuck you in the ass with a charge that will see you spending 20x the time behind bars. 

        There are virtually no acquittals in the federal system (1 in 212)  and we’re seeing this extend to state courts as well. Mens rea is viewed as unimportant, if not an annoying hindrance to imprisonment.

        The legal  system is quite frankly, unconcerned with innocence, only imprisonment  - unfortunately many white, middle class Americans are under the ignorant impression that the system isn’t completely, utterly broken – a perverted system led by sociopathic prosecutors who strive to rack up impressive records in order to run for future political office.  But this is what the african american community has known for years.

         http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/26/us/tough-sentences-help-prosecutors-push-for-plea-bargains.html?_r=3&partner=rss&emc=rss

        But it makes me happy to see America descending into this. The more people on edge, the more people angry, the more people disenfranchised, the more people who realize that the police and courts are the public’s enemy, the better. 

        America uber alles.

        • Will Sanders says:

          Hope you are wrong. If not your statement deserves serious consideration.   As a white middle class American I am completely aware the system is broken.  The system must be fixed but the fix can’t be worse than the repair. ( ETA, than the problem, sorry, brain slop)

  39. Will Sanders says:

    The foundation of this nation is Law. We, as members of this nation, must support the Law, if the Law is to be changed or upheld we must work within the framework provided by the Law. Anything else is to embrace anarchy and barbarism.

    • Rosa Parks, Medger Evers, Martin Luther King, all the lunch counter sit in participants and Malcom X would like a word with you.

      • Will Sanders says:

        All of these icons of history trusted the ideal of  law and did NOT resort to violence.  They are proof  that devoted people working together can change the world.

    • Ambiguity says:

      The foundation of this nation is Law. We, as members of this nation, must support the Law, if the Law is to be changed or upheld we must work within the framework provided by the Law. Anything else is to embrace anarchy and barbarism.

      Rosa Parks broke the law.

      Just sayin’…

      (I mean, don’t you think the situation is a little more nuanced than “the law is good, action outside the law is bad?”)

      • Will Sanders says:

        Damn good point. Brings up the issue of was the law she was breaking legal?  Have to consider a response. And yes the situation is more nuanced than good and bad. BUT I still stand on my point that violence will not help us get our point across. 

  40. boris kane says:

    http://live.reuters.com/Event/Occupy_Wall_Street2
    Citibank Statement Regarding Protester ArrestsOctober 15, 2011 6:12 PM By Citibank Public AffairsCitibank Public Affairs issued the following statement regarding today’s incident: “A large amount of protesters entered our branch at 555 La Guardia Place around 2:00 PM today. They were very disruptive and refused to leave after being repeatedly asked, causing our staff to call 911. The Police asked the branch staff to close the branch until the protesters could be removed. Only one person asked to close an account and was accommodated.”To be clear: no one was arrested for closing an account; we didn’t lock people in our branch – the police decided to close the branch; and we didn’t ask for anyone to be arrested – that is a police decision.

  41. Mister44 says:

    Was…. was that a goth Laura Ingalls Wilder?

  42. Viper23 says:

    It’s funny, but totally unrelated to the protests we canceled our Citibank card 3 days ago. What if everyone in the protests canceled just one of their card, but they all picked the same bank???

  43. People like “teapot” is why we have a country at all. It’s good to remember that the American Revolution was fought and supported by less than 20% of the population. The other 80% were hiding under their beds wetting their pants and bleating indignantly on BoingBoing. 

    Tyranny thrives on people who are “calm, rational, reasonable and measured in [their] actions.” I don’t think the US is anywhere near the breaking point, and consequently, the folks in control probably aren’t breaking a sweat yet. Change is probably not on the horizon, but I certainly would welcome being proven wrong.

    • Yes, if it weren’t for people like teapot we would be little more than Canadians. O, the horror.
      I’d agree that America is not at point where the poor people are so desperate they will tear up the foundations of their society. But it may be at the point where the plutocracy is so powerful that it will pull the foundation out from under most of the lower classes. It’s that latter sort of change that’s on the horizon and the radical left is on the defensive trying to hold on to the meager equality they’ve solidified over the past couple centuries.

      • “Yes, if it weren’t for people like teapot we would be little more than Canadians. O, the horror.”

        Kind of a false analogy, and misses the point, don’t you think? We could be little more than Albanians, just as easily.

  44. Will Sanders says:

    Tommy, unless genocide is in the offering or your complete freedom and recourse to higher authority is revoked, violence is not the answer. ( I do not include self defense against personal assault or defense of others in this, if you are getting mugged,  shoot the bastard!) BUT if you are in a protest, you are no longer just yourself, you are EVERYONE in the protest, you can no longer act in a vacuum, every action you take will seen as the action of EVERYONE. We must take and hold the higher ground.

  45. Will Sanders says:

    Mister44,
    Don’t think the situation is analogous , in Mexico there is a violent, anti-government, illegal organization which exists outside of the law which has proven to use grotesque and violent methods to further it’s interests. The drug cartels have never been meek little lambs.  The violence was escalated when the government began to assert itself as a force of law. The US/Mexican government did not force the innocent, kind and beneficent drug cartels to regretfully decapitate women and children to defend it’s freedom. 

    • Mister44 says:

      You’re right – it probably isn’t the most elegant analogy. See above for the point I was clumsily making.

      ETA – totally on the same page with you on drug prohibition.

    • niktemadur says:

      Curious that you mention Mexico.  There’s a tax called IDE (Impuesto Sobre Depósito de Efectivo = Cash Deposit Tax), if you deposit over 15,000 pesos (currently around US$1,200ºº) during the course of a month, anything over that monthly quota is taxed around 2.5%, under the rallying cry of “the war on drugs” and money laundering.

      That’s right, if you deposit over US$1,200 a month in Mexico, you are taxed 2.5% because “you act like a drug dealer”.  It’s easy to visualize most honest middle-class people in Mexico saving their money under a mattress, it accumulates more interest that way.

      Must be nice to live from bank profits in Mexico.  “I don’t care if I make the pie shrink (affecting millions of people), as long as a slice belongs to me”.

  46. Will Sanders says:

    BTW, for what is worth.. I think we as a nation are sadly behind the times regarding drug use/abuse and a more rational policy might be vastly more effective, prohibition and such being so successful.   ‘Nuff  said and further comment is neither sought nor desired.

  47. Will Sanders says:

    Mister44,
         I think I see what you are thinking, you are saying the cartels are responding to the US/Mexican government’s use of violence with violence.  Again, not the same. The Mexican/US governments are responding to a valid threat to the rule of law. We the 99% are supposed to be working WITHIN the law to ensure the law is enforced.  If we take action outside the law we place ourselves outside the law. I refer mainly to the law as pertains  to offenses to the person. If you choose to employ non-violent resistance you are not offering violence against another person yet can make an effective argument in support of your position without compromising the rule of law.

  48. Will Sanders says:

    Mister44,
    Point accepted.

  49. ill lich says:

    I don’t see how it was legal to arrest her for trespassing (even if I ignore that she is a Citibank customer) when she had already left the building.

    I’m also guessing the camera was hidden, otherwise the cameraman would have been busted too, and pronto.

    I don’t know whether transferring money out of a big bank to a local credit union (I’ve already transferred mine out of BOA to a smaller “big” bank) will make a difference, but I suggest that it wouldn’t really hurt any of us, and will be an interesting experiment, especially if everyone does it on the same day: the lines at local branches will be huge, and will garner plenty of news coverage, but I don’t know whether it will have any effect on the solvency of the banks (an entire nation of Lilliputians couldn’t hold Gulliver down for long, but damn if they didn’t try.)

    • Just find an ethical bank, put your money there.  If they stop being ethical, put your money somewhere else.

      Really banks should have to be ethical; but if they all were then we couldn’t have wars and that would make governments boooooored.

  50. jandetlefsen says:

    wonder how many customer will close their accounts just based on this video that apparently only shows one side of the story. If you wanna damage a business, try to get “police violence” involved and it will sure as hell go viral on the web.

    • Will Sanders says:

      Don’t know how much discretion branch managers have in the running of the place. I do not think we can definitely say this is an example of the banks policy towards it’s customers. Can’t say I would not be just a bit panicked and alarmed if this happened at a place I was in charge of.  And I think the policemen were placed in a no win position.  

  51. Will Sanders says:

    Was it illegal? I am certainly not a legal expert, what rights does one have in this situation? As I said in an earlier post, is the bank an agent of the customer or is the customer an agent of the bank? Both have very different legal ramifications. I do not believe either your or I are can speak on that.  ( If you can PLEASE  say so!) Of course that concept used to be called customer service.

    • Stephen Rice says:

      I think I  can rule one possibility out immediately: why, and how, on earth would the customer be an agent of the bank?

      In law an agent is someone who carries out instructions on behalf of a principal, so for example your lawyer is your agent and you are the principal because you instruct them and they carry out the instructions.

      • Will Sanders says:

        Showing my legal ignorance. I am sure there is a legal term that covers what I am looking for. If I read this right then the bank would be a customer’s agent?

  52. benher says:

    Those of the porcine persuasion are practically frothing at the crotch as they swamp this poor woman. What a shameful moment for our soon-to-be-overturned society.

  53. GoGo Vicmorrow says:

    Exactly! Citibank made a statement that they didn’t lock the doors and asked the people to leave and didn’t call for arrests. Well if they didn’t call for arrests why was this women singled out? If they didn’t lock the doors why were the people communicating through the glass saying they were going to be arrested and not leaving? And why does it matter if they weren’t held if they were going to be dragged back in anyway?

    I think Citibank DID lock the protestors in. I think they DID call for arrests.

  54. Quick, Citigroup can’t pay out any money, get yours out before it’s all gone >:)

  55. Jesse in Japan says:

    She should have known better than to dump her bank when they were so emotionally fragile.

  56. adkthoreau says:

    I am no fan of Citibank or Chase, I closed my accounts with Citibank 5 years ago and they do put you through a ring of circles to end your relationship with them.

    As an 80′s activist who was arrested many times in planned actions in NYC, I have seen this same scenario happen many times. This was a planned action by people in the OWS
    movement but not an action voted on and approved by the GA of OWS. This group of people went to Citibank to get arrested. As you can see in the video they had a representative outside of the bank that they were in communication with so as to be covered by legal
    representation. I am sure they were charged with trespassing because they were asked to leave and did not do so, this is standard operating procedure for people participating in non-violent civil disobedience. The regular customers of Citibank would have been cleared from the premises before any arrests where made. It is also standard operating procedure for the police to give you the opportunity to leave before being arrested. Government offices and
    businesses actually would prefer demonstrators to leave without arrests to avoid the negative press that the arrests produce. I was never arrested in a planned action without being given the opportunity to leave without charges. Occasionally a person in the group would either have second thoughts about getting arrested and want to leave after the police had given notice that they would be arrested or decidedly challenge the police after the process has started. This always makes for a splashy scene as the police do not like having (prisoners as they call them) escape. I choose to believe that that sort of tactic is not particularly authentic civil disobedience it does however make great press. I know how frustrating it is when the media does not cover your cause, and yesterday there definitely was a major blackout or at least a brownout of the OWS actions by the major media. This video has received thousands of views and certainly stirred up anger and other emotions for lots of people that would not have been interested otherwise.

  57. Gemma says:

    The workers in that branch of Citibank are members of the 99% too.

    I’d be pretty perturbed by protesters (however peaceful) inside my bank branch, and I don’t know that I would handle it any better than they did (by asking them to leave and calling the police if they didn’t).

  58. Thiazi says:

    Out of curiosity, how would we be able to find out who was paying those officers at that time? Given that JPChase has been footing the OT bill for the NYPD (to the tune of $37/hour for the officer and 10% to the NYPD), I think I’d like to know.

  59. This is some of the worst riot prevention I’ve ever seen. I understand that the cops are trying to break up a situation that might become out of hand (although I’m pretty sure it wouldn’t have), but arresting random people obeying the law such that you inflame the other protesters is not exactly a means to this end.

  60. Fahad says:

    This what you get from a pure corporate country! what do they expect? a big drastic change? The citizens are to blame for giving the opportunity for companies to manipulate their life’s. After all these years now they want the system to change? Its like raising a kid and teaching him/her how to live a certain way, and then all of a sudden you want to change the life that was once taught by you (citizens).

    I didn’t say its impossible but it will take lots of time and effort to change what was taught all these years.

  61. Ken Ballweg says:

    One of the difficulties with comment sections is being able to cull out paid trolls hired to discredit liberal or progressive movements and blogs. While not certain, the poster who styles him/herself as “teapot” smells of such a poster. 

    “Teapot” indeed. Full of TeaBag pennies per post I suspect.

    • Jim Saul says:

      Agreed.  In this case I think it’s more likely a youth thing, but when threads (particularly science topics) are quickly overwhelmed with right wing copy-pasta, one has to conclude there must be something up.

      It’s sometimes organized without being paid – on Freerepublic they call it “freeping”, organizing via closed twitter feeds to overwhelm discussion boards with sockpuppets.  They also call it “online activism.”Every once in a while I get curious and check out the twitter feeds of seemingly determined derailers.  It’s always curious to find that they exclusively “follow” feeds that are diametrically opposed to their views.

      • Antinous / Moderator says:

        Well, teapot is not an astroturfer. And whether or not you agree with it, the subject of sabotage or violence in mass movements is pretty mainstream. It’s not like he made a call to assassinate anybody.

    • Will Sanders says:

      I am sure there are folks out there acting as agents provocateurs on both sides.

      • Daniel says:

        I am sure there are folks out there acting as agents provocateurs on both sides.

        Are you saying there are hippies dressing in suits and carrying around copies of “Atlas Shrugged” directing false-flag campaigns against the tea party or something?

        I’m having a lot of trouble imagining how anyone on the left wing could discredit anyone on the right this way.  Carrying racist signs at tea party rallies?  Acting like ignoramuses to make the right look anti-intellectual?  Calling for violence against liberals?  It’s like Poe’s law, there’s nothing liberals can do to make conservatives look any worse from a liberal perspective.  And from a conservative perspective they can only make them look better (i.e. dumber and more vicious).

  62. “Sorry if this is coming off as shrill or soapboxey. It’s just that I really tire of this view that if we ask nicely, the same people that carried out everything delineated above will meet our requests just because. They will not.”
    Yup. They have to become very aware that continuing their course will be detrimental to them. Violence doesn’t need to be used, just the threat of violence works wonders. 

    Look at how successful it was for the Teabaggers.  They may be polling lower than atheists, but they got to destroy the US government like they wanted. You can’t argue with success.

  63. Palomino says:

    I like the fact that they are there, but it really is for show. 

    1. Set up a new direct deposit
    2. Stop all autopay
    3. And let your money dwindle down

    WARNING, I know this from experience: Your account is never really closed.

    From http://consumerist.com/2008/02/your-account-is-never-really-closed-at-bank-of-america.html

    What strange logic. What obligation does Bank of America have to honor a contract between two other parties? None. When was the last time a bank did something out the kindness of their heart? Don’t be fooled. This practice should be illegal. They have this policy in place because they know it makes them more money from fees. Bank of America, the bank you can never break up with.

    So Bank of America is basically powerless to stop credit card fraud?Apparently, yes, and not just credit card fraud. In May, a Chicago Tribune reporter and Bank of America customer was a victim of old fashioned check washing fraud. The perp stole an envelope containing a payment the reporter had made for his student loans, and changed it to make himself the payee. The reporter closed the account, got a new one, placed a fraud alert, and filed a police report. The thief was still able to cash the check because Bank of America linked the old account to the new.

  64. Palomino says:

    Demand that your bank’s ATM’s that are NOT serviced (emptied) by them, be labeled “This ATM is serviced by a 3rd Party Vendor” followed by whose responsible for what. 

    Is that ATM machine, the one with your banks logo  lit up and  directly outside of the bank’s doors REALLY SERVICED BY YOUR  BANK?

    Find out.

    My previous bank, Desert Schools on 16th Street & Camelback in Phoenix AZ, has a 3rd party vendor “service” the machine. “Service” does not mean “repair”. They remove and process the deposits off site. See, I was being charged ODF’s but I had “deposited” a paycheck. No you didn’t was the response. I returned with the receipt. Then they decided to tell me it wasn’t their fault, it was a third party vendor. Who? We can’t tell you. But I want to call them and ask them what they did with my check. And I want you to show me where you told me in your privacy polices that a third party vendor would have access to my personal banking information. 

    Sir, you’re going to have to leave. 

  65. Samantha Crane says:

    How is this even remotely about trespassing? The woman arrested in this video was standing outside, on a public sidewalk. The only basis they had for arresting her was that she had been in the bank earlier “with all the others.” Customers on private property are not “trespassing” until they are asked to leave *and fail to do so*. Since she had already actually left the property, there was no basis for this arrest. 

  66. Makes me wonder how much flak I’ll get when I go to close my account at another bank? Truthfully, I’ve been unhappy at my bank for years, but I didn’t want to deal with the hassle of moving banks and changing all my pre-set up payments. However, the increased fees and their continuing attitude of “What are you going to do about it?” and wanting me to be grateful they allow me access to my own money… I’m done. I’ve felt like I worked for THEM for years.

    I quit.

  67. B. Tindle says:

    To be blunt, what happened to that lady is bs.  Awful!

  68. crashgrab says:

    So apparently the customers/protesters were holding a teach in, as well as closing their accounts. They had to have been prepared to be arrested for that. However, I still think dragging the woman in who was outside was completely unreasonable. It seems like she was one of the few who agreed to leave when asked and then they dragged her back in and arrested her.

    http://gawker.com/5850398/a-protesters-account-of-this-weekends-citibank-arrests

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