The End of the Occupy Camps Is the Start of the Next Phase:
Last night, in Philadelphia and Los Angeles, the police moved in by the hundreds to clear out the Occupy encampments. In L.A., Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa used the tiredest excuse of them all: think about the children. In a city with at least 13,500 homeless kids (and that's just the ones that show up at schools), L.A. probably could have spent the money it used for the 1400 cops and 200 arrests at the City Hall camp on, say, housing some of the kids who don't want to be on the streets.

You can bet that we'll be hearing about more crackdowns as the winter progresses, until almost all the camps are gone. And to that, the Rude Pundit says, "Finally."

Don't get him wrong. He fully supports the occupiers and their colonization of urban spaces, the footholds of American renewal. He even understands why defending the camps has become so important. For some, whether fresh-faced, middle-class college student or unemployed middle-aged homeless person, the camps are a taste of what power and democracy are like. They are a small victory in a concrete swamp of constant indignity and degradation. Smelly, ugly, and full of sloppy dissent, the Rude Pundit thought they were beautiful. It's why he wanted and still wants people to donate stuff to the remaining encampments. If they're gonna stay, then he wants these hippie harbingers of the future fight to be safe and warm.

But the camps need to be seen for what they are and what they've accomplished: they had to come into being in order to show that there are large numbers of people willing to put their bodies on the line for a cause. They needed to remind us that the public square is not virtual and that civic engagement in the real world is necessary and vital for the reclamation of the country. That has been done. But right now the media is focusing too much on the camps as symbols and their eviction as a loss, with some even portraying the evictions as a victory over an ill-prepared, misguided, easily-mocked group of anarchists and leeches. Don't let the fuckers have the victory. Don't let them take back the narrative.

Of course the occupations have to be destroyed by the police. That was the point, wasn't it? Draw out the authorities. Get them to respond to your actions. Transform yourself into beings with your own agency, no longer objects to be acted upon. And how does that not bait the ones with the batons and the pepper spray and the ones who order them to attack?

The Rude Pundit doesn't mourn the end of the encampments in the same way he didn't mourn moving from teenage years to adulthood. Now we've seen that action is possible, that community is possible, that mass public support is possible. It's time to move to targeted direct action, and, no, that doesn't mean supporting candidates for election. That's bullshit co-opting and dilution of the movement. Leave that to Occupy Wall Street's sympathizers. It means direct confrontation, like the new effort to stop foreclosures from occurring. (The Rude Pundit will be out there next Tuesday.)

And it means that Adbusters had it right when it declared, in the heated environment after New York was shut down, "We will turn this winter into a training ground for precision disruptions – flashmobs, stink bombs, edgy theatrics – against the megacorps and the unrepentant 1%, a festival of resistance in the snow with, or without, an encampment that'll lay the tactical foundation for our Spring Offensive."

While we need to take care of the outdoor occupiers, we cannot cling to slivers of land when we have a nation to take back.
Late Post Today:
Shredder's got a mutant army ready to attack. Time to put on the shell and take that bastard down. Back later with more aberrant rudeness.


A Brief List of Obvious Things That Should Be Obvious:
1. Today's New York Times contains an editorial titled "Reporting Abuse" that says, in essence, "Hey, if you catch a grown-up fucking a child, you gotta tell the police." For some reason, when it comes to college coaches (or, you know, priests), this simple, obvious action has to be explained. So, to be clear, if you know someone's fucking a kid, don't tell your coach. Don't tell your administrator. Tell the cops. If you need this explained to you more than once, you should be arrested, too.

2. If you invite Ann Coulter onto your nice TV show, she will act cunty. On Morning Starbucks today, Coulter, who had been invited on by smug host Joe Scarborough over an exchange on Twitter, was bleeped out for calling John McCain a "douchebag" (he's more of a colostomy bag, so the edit's understandable). And then she called Ted Kennedy a "human pestilence," which led Team Joe to spend a great deal of time, post-cunt, praising and fluffing the reputation of Kennedy. Remember: A good 90% of Coulter's material comes from dissing Ted Kennedy.

3. Really? The right-wing psycho who killed 77 people in a Norway shooting spree is actually a psycho? Huh. Go figure.

4. Herman Cain really likes to bang (or try to bang) white women. The obvious thing here: wait, you mean a skeevy lobbyist and poisonous food hawker turned out to be a skeevy human being? How could we even think about not electing him president? Oh, and he's thinking of getting out of the campaign now. Just two days too late. Extra bonus humor points: Cain's lawyer saying that "No individual...should be questioned about his or her private sexual life." What country has he been living in?

5. If you're a cop and you're in hot pursuit of an old man on a bicycle who, at best, might be a little drunk, don't tase him. Just, you know, don't.

The sad part is how long this post could go on. Really? The Federal Reserve made secret deals with banks that allowed them to make billions of dollars with taxpayer bailout money? Really? We're gonna keep learning what an execrable scumfucker Rupert Murdoch and his employees are?

It'd be nice, every now and then, to just be pleasantly surprised that someone you wouldn't expect behaved with honor.


We Came, We Conversed, We Blanketed:
Small gestures of kindness are not worthless. Around the nation, rude readers used Black Friday (or other Thanksgiving weekend days) to avoid the pepper-spraying rioters at Wal-Mart and instead brought blankets and sweaters and hoodies and food to their local occupations in an effort called "Blanket the Earth." Here's a few of the activities and sites:

From the tireless Denise Wirtz, who organized people for Occupy Atlanta.

From Becki in Austin with Bonnie and Karen, fellow BtE activists. Don't laugh. It gets cold at night.

From Sylvia Martin, who was one of several people who dropped off items in Boston.

The Rude Pundit, Nielsen Hayden, and others dropped off clothes and more in Zuccotti Park, NYC, where we were thanked by the human mike. The items were being handed out before we even left the metal barricaded area, more a hippie zoo than a protest site now. The action is elsewhere. The city is the occupation site now.

Other people showed up throughout the weekend in DC, Sacramento, Des Moines, and elsewhere, literally coast to coast, and in Vancouver, BC. It was an international effort to give aid and comfort to the occupiers.

Thanks to everyone who brought stuff and everyone who engaged with the occupiers, even as we enter what might become a post-encampment strategy.
Newt Gingrich Is Nothing You Want Him To Be:
First off, someone oughta point out that the Manchester Union-Leader, New Hampshire's largest daily newspaper (which means it has ten readers), is a shitty conservative rag that makes the Washington Times look erudite. Today's top news includes a warning that says, no, really, "Commuters should take it slow today since New Hampshire State Police will be out in force targeting aggressive and distracted drivers during heavy commuting hours" and crimes that involve a purse-snatcher and a crack whore, not to mention the safe return of an elderly woman who wandered away from her nursing home. This is not to belittle the snow-burdened people of the...what the fuck are you? The beaver state? The Show Me state? Live Free or Suck a Dick?...whatever...but, surely, a real newspaper would report on more than randomly lost old people and how super-great right-wingers are.

Granite state, right? Yeah, that's it. Anyways...

Also today, in a way-too-symbolic article, the paper talks about an "invasion" of feral swine in the state, which dovetails nicely with its endorsement of Newt Gingrich for president.

In its editorial supporting the former Speaker of the House, the Union-Leader says, "The pigs are between 100 and 300 pounds with rough hair, tusks and rapier-sharp teeth...They are difficult to hunt, wily, and 'ornery animals you don’t want to fool with,'" and "'We are concerned about their presence' primarily for ecological reasons."

Actually, that makes more sense in discussing Gingrich than what the editors actually wrote: "A lot of candidates say they're going to improve Washington. Newt Gingrich has actually done that." That's like saying that Godzilla was responsible for a great deal of urban renewal in Tokyo. Gingrich is one of the primary reasons that Washington sucks so hard and that Congress has become a worthless clusterfuck that actually works against the good of the nation. He teed it all up.

In October 1995, Gingrich told an audience at Jerry Falwell's Liberty University that if Democrats and the President don't agree to his budget plan, "fine, they won't have any money to run the parts of the Government they like, and we'll see what happens." He wanted Medicare to "wither on the vine." He blamed liberals for everything from Columbine to Susan Smith's drowning of her children. The fucking government shut down because of him. But, hey, sure, yeah, he improved the place.

Have fun, supposedly rational, realistic conservatives who are thrilled at the Gingrich surge. Not only is he an amoral, corrupt, faux-intellectual who windbags his way around the nation, but he also believes in science and technology. He wanted more government spending on medical technology for information-sharing. He actually think science education based on, you know, science is a good thing.

When, now, he hedges on whether or not he believes in evolution, it'll be awesome when Michele Bachmann trots out this 2006 quote from a Discover magazine interview: "Evolution certainly seems to express the closest understanding we can now have [about how we came to be]." Or this one: "I believe evolution should be taught as science, and intelligent design should be taught as philosophy." Or, on another hot-button topic, "I would not seek to ban research on stem cells in fertility clinics." Or "Unlike right-wingers who would say, 'Since we don't know 100 percent for sure, we can keep carbon loading,' I'd say there is enough evidence that it's reasonable to try to move toward renewables, to try to move toward conservation, to try to move toward a hydrogen economy."

Sure, he says the opposite now. But have fun convincing the Iowa and South Carolina and, yes, New Hampshire yahoos that Gingrich is on their side.

By the way, the wild boars are not native to New Hampshire. But hunters so want to hunt them that they've been illegally imported from Tennessee and Georgia and elsewhere. The problem is that once the Southern pigs get in, they multiply and destroy everything they can get their tusks on.


Blanketing the Occupiers Today:
The Rude Pundit will be at Zuccotti Park at 2 p.m. today under the big red metal sculpture (or, you know, Joie de Vivre by Mark di Suvero). If there's a group meeting going on there, he'll be next to it. He'll have a garbage bag of sweaters and gloves and such.

Let the Rude Pundit know if you did head out today to donate cold weather gear to your local Occupy site. Some readers have already done so. And take a picture or two to send in to this blog. Some of 'em will be posted here or on Facebook.

Austin at 2 p.m. looks like it's gonna be a party of blanketeers, as will Atlanta from 3-6 p.m. Get all your info to see if there's a gathering in your town. And if you're on your own, enjoy the fall day at the occupation.

On Monday, your regularly-scheduled rudeness will return.

But for today, let's do a small, good thing for the protesters we've celebrated for the last two and a half months. Thanks to all who have worked hard so far. And to all who turn out.


Finalizing Plans for Friday's Blanket the Earth Donations (Update):
(Bumping this up to the top of the page. Let the Rude Pundit know if you're participating.)

The Rude Pundit has been getting the word out in every venue he can over your internets. This Friday, a Black one, we've been told, he wants people to head down to their local Occupy (name of your city) site, should there still be one, and donate cold weather gear (blankets, sweaters, gloves, you know, the usual things) or anything to help those encamped and those holding outdoor protests make it through the quickly coming winter. The idea has been for it to not simply be donations, but for people to go to the Occupy groups to show support.

He appreciates all those who have chimed in that they're going to do so. Some are more organized than others, as is the way with we on the left.

Here's a few definite meet-up times and places:
Atlanta: Meet at Woodruff Park (aka "Troy Davis Park") from 3-6 p.m. to gather any donated items. At 6 p.m., head over to Occupy Atlanta to make the donation. (Thanks to the awesome Denise at Pros/e/yes for her organizing.)

Austin: Meet at City Hall at 2 p.m. (Thanks to Beckinham.)

Boston: Meet a green-jacketed woman with plastic bins, in front of South Station at 9 a.m. (Thanks, Sylvia. And if anyone wants to organize a later time, let us know.)

Washington, DC: Meet at 2 p.m. at the southeast corner of Freedom Square, by 13th and Pennsylvania before heading to Occupy DC. (Thanks to also awesome Violetta.)

New York City: Meet the Rude Pundit at the red metal sculpture at the southeast corner of Zuccotti Park at 2 p.m. and, since the donation tent is no more, we'll head down to 52 Broadway, where there's a stockpile of donated goods. (Drop a line if you're gonna meet up in NYC.)

Others from Los Angeles, Chicago, Chapel Hill, Pocatello, and elsewhere have said they are heading to donate. There are even some groups doing so. If any of them are reading, come up with a time and place and send it to rudepundit_at_yahoo.com so the Rude Pundit can post it here and at the BtE Facebook page and Twitter. Remember: "organizing" can be as simple as saying, "Hey, why don't we meet here?" Do not fear it.

Let's be honest: there's a chance you may be flying solo on this in your town. That's okay. And there's a chance that the numbers will dwindle to zero at the encampments by the dead of winter (or be raided and broken up). That's okay, too. Places like Chicago, Detroit, and NYC have ongoing actions without camps. What the Rude Pundit wants to accomplish is, yes, the aid and comfort provided by some nice wool socks. But it's also a physical demonstration that the occupations are just one part of a movement that spreads far beyond the parks and lawns where protesters are camped.

Actions are loud, man. Way louder than anything we tap, tap, tap out on our laptops.

(Note: take pics of your BtE action and they'll be tossed up on the blog this weekend. Also, later today, he'll have a complete list of contacts at Facebook.)
A Dark Poem from the Conquered for Thanksgiving in Desperate Times:
A piece of the poem "[Long Time Gone]" by Leslie Marmon Silko, who is a member of the Laguna Pueblo tribe. In order to win a contest in ancient times in America about who has the greatest powers, a witch doesn't cast spells or conjure. She tells the future to witches from all the native tribes:

go ahead
laugh if you want to
but as I tell the story
it will begin to happen.

Set in motion now
set in motion by our witchery
to work for us.

Caves across the ocean
in caves of dark hills
white skin people
like the belly of a fish
covered with hair.

Then they grow away from the earth
then they grow away from the sun
then they grow away from the plants and animals.
They see no life
When they look
they see only objects.
The world is a dead thing for them
the trees and rivers are not alive
the mountains and stones are not alive.
The deer and the bear are objects
They see no life.
They fear
They fear the world.
They destroy what they fear.
They fear themselves.

The wind will blow them across the ocean
thousands of them in giant boats
swarming like larva
out of a crushed ant hill.

They will carry objects
which can shoot death
faster than the eye can see.

They will kill the things they fear
all the animals
the people will starve.

They will poison the water
they will spin the water away
and there will be drought
the people will starve.

They will fear what they find
They will fear the people
They will kill what they fear.

Entire villages will be wiped out
They will slaughter whole tribes.
Corpses for us
Blood for us
Killing killing killing killing

And those they do not kill
will die anyway
at the destruction they see
at the loss
at the loss of the children
the loss will destroy the rest.

Stolen rivers and mountains
the stolen land will eat their hearts
and jerk their mouths from the Mother.
The people will starve.

They will bring terrible diseases
the people have never known.
Entire tribes will die out
covered with festering sores...
vomiting blood.
Corpses for our work

Set in motion now
set in motion by our witchery
set in motion
to work for us

They will take this world from ocean to ocean
they will turn on each other
they will destroy each other
Up here
in these hills
they will find the rocks,
rocks with veins of green and yellow and black.
They will lay the final pattern with these rocks
they will lay it across the world
and explode everything.

Set in motion now
set in motion
To destroy
To kill
Objects to work for us
objects to act for us
Performing the witchery
for suffering
for torment
for the stillborn
the deformed
the sterile
the dead.

set into motion now
set into motion.


The Super-Duper Committee Fails to Fuck Up the Economy Even Worse:
So what the fuck was that, that congressional Supercommittee bullshit? Was it just, as Jonathan Chait says, a beard for President Obama and John Boehner so that they could maintain the appearance of being action stars to their bases while still secretly buggering Keynesians behind the Capitol? (No, that doesn't make actual sense, but it's funny, so go with it.)

It was never gonna succeed in doing anything for one simple reason and one simple reason alone: Republicans just don't give a fuck. If you believe, as Republicans do, that it's better to cut Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security and education and the environment and food safety than to raise taxes a little on the rich, then you don't give a fuck. If you believe that a compromise that gives you nearly every cut you want but still raises taxes just a smidgen is a capitulation to liberal/socialist/satanic goals, then you not only don't give a fuck, you are a sociopath.

So now, as it was designed, the sequestering occurs, with cuts in social programs, the expiration of the Bush tax cuts, and, heavens to Betsy, defense budget cuts, all because Republicans can't, can't, can't, no-way, no-how raise a fuckin' penny on revenue. The best we can say is, "Well, at least the Democrats didn't make a deal that fucks things up even worse."

(And let's not toast defense budget cuts too much, unless you've got an idea for all the jobs that'll be lost there. The Rude Pundit can't make the leap to say that the family of the guy who cleans the toilets at Raytheon should go hungry just because his work prevents weapons makers from getting e.Coli.)

That's some fuckin' pledge that Grover Norquist made with nearly every Republican; it must have been signed in blood and accompanied by a photo of each signing Congress person with Norquist's cock in their mouth, just to be safe. By the way, you wanna talk about people who don't give a fuck? The Rude Pundit's faced Norquist, talked to him even, looked into his dark eyes, and that bastard is all cold evil, through and through, totally and utterly unflappable. If a Congressman crosses him, you can bet that Norquist is gonna appear at the foot of his bed with a razor and a smile.

So the supercommittee failed. We knew that was gonna happen the second the debt ceiling deal was made. And now we can say, pretty damn assuredly, that the defense cuts won't happen. Because they won't. Because someone's gotta have some courage at some point for it to happen, and (non-Bernie Sanders) courage is in short supply as we descend into the ever-looming election season, which is now every season.


Nonviolent Protests in America Now and Then: Same as It Ever Was:

(Picture 1 from UC Davis newspaper of events on last Friday. Picture 2 from Birmingham, Alabama in 1963.)


New Rude Video: Occupy Wall Street and the NYPD, November 15, 2011:

This is from shaky-cam video the Rude Pundit took on the day after Bloomberg's goons wrecked the Zuccotti Park encampment. He went from Canal and 6th back to Zuccotti Park, accompanied by cops every step of the way.

It's also pretty clear evidence as to why yesterday's turnout was so huge for various actions, especially the over 30,000 who took part in the Foley Square/Brooklyn Bridge march (and that's from the NYPD, not OWS - so suck on that, Tea Party number fluffers).

Remember: the Occupy protesters in your town are gonna need your help this winter. Blanket the Earth, the Rude Pundit's action for November 25, will hopefully provide some relief for the ones brave enough to try to last out the winter in places like Albany and Boise.

(And if you are organizing a donation for your local Occupation on Black Friday, let the Rude Pundit know where you're doing it so that he can announce so others may join you. Let's snowball this thing before, you know, the snowballs fly.)


This Is Not Your Fucking Movement; This Is Our Fucking Movement:
Let's be honest here: the march this morning to shut down Wall Street was useless if its goal was to, well, shut down Wall Street. The New York Stock Exchange is, more or less, a show. Multi-million dollar financial transactions are not done by crazy, sweaty guys on a loud, chaotic floor. They're done digitally. So whether or not the secretaries and junior fuckbag executives and janitors got into work didn't stop a single transfer of funds from one rich asshole to another. It pissed off some people and got the cops more overtime.

But, as ever, as ever, since it's started, everyone, from The Daily Show to Diane Rehm, right, left, and middle, has insisted that Occupy Wall Street conform to some readily defined paradigm of what a protest movement needs to be. Essentially, they are echoing something that Karl Rove drooled out the other day when he asked protesters at a speech he giving at Johns Hopkins University, "Who gave you the right to occupy America?" The real question is "Who took that right away?"

We are just two months into this. Two fucking months after sucking up the shit given to us from the right for years. Two fucking months after being part of the movement that propelled Obama into the presidency, only to see that movement dissolved and dissipated. Two fucking months after watching two years of Tea Party bullshit being flaunted in our faces as if it represented anything but the height of corporate and conservative cynicism and manipulation.

We are two months into this and everyone in the media is clamoring for closure. It took years for the civil rights movement to get laws changed. It took years for the anti-Vietnam War movement to get through the thick skulls of the majority of Americans. This is just starting. Welcome to the real occupation.

Right now, the whole Occupy Wall Street narrative arc is following a well-worn script: defiance of authority followed by a crackdown by the agents of the authority. The corrupt, illegal power of the police and the governments of New York, Oakland, and elsewhere has been on display, with the raid on Zuccotti Park and on encampments around the country, as well as attacks on media members from the right, left, and middle.

The march this morning wasn't going to do anything, despite the hopeful rumors that the stock market opening bell had been delayed (it wasn't). No, the point was, like the rallies for Obama before them, that there is power in numbers. And that power needs to be exhibited and enacted.

When the Supreme Court, in the Citizens United decision, said that corporations are people with First Amendment rights and affirmed that money is the equivalent of speech, it essentially was saying that some people have more speech than others. The wealthy and the corporations can never be matched in terms of the speech effect of their dollars. But they can be matched and overcome by the sheer volume of people. That's why we say we are the 99%.


Long Live the Occupation (With or Without Occupying) Updated and Updated Again:
The bastards may have taken down Oakland, Portland, New York City, and other occupations in what is increasingly clear was a coordinated attack on the movement by city halls and, perhaps, really, the Department of Homeland Security. But fuck them. There's still many, many OWS protests around the nation, sea to shining motherfuckin' sea.

The following Occupy encampments, big and small, are still going strong, according to a Facebook request put out by the Rude Pundit (this list is inevitably going to be incomplete - feel free to write so it can be updated, which it will be throughout the day):

Birmingham, Alabama
Boise (really? Cool...)
Columbia, South Carolina
Columbus, Ohio
Des Moines
Iowa City
Las Vegas
Lexington, Kentucky
Little Rock
Los Angeles
New Orleans
Portland, Maine
Rochester, New York
Santa Cruz
Washington, DC

They're gonna need supplies. And next Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, the Rude Pundit wants a whole lot of people to show up with the cold-weather gear that the people camped out are going to need to make it through the winter. If the NYC occupiers are not back in camp by then, the Rude Pundit will come out to Philadelphia. Who is organizing there?

Blanket the occupiers. Blanket the Earth.

But let's not get too "We Are the World" here. The siege is ongoing:

San Francisco has been raided and is being dismantled. San Diego is under attack. Dallas could be gone as early as today. Albany has been under constant threat by the police. Minnesota has been threatened by city officials in Minneapolis. Houston is in a battle over what is or is not a tent. Tulsa keeps getting fucked with. Occupy Missoula has been fucked with, too. Detroit is moving indoors rather than face the brutal Michigan winter. Charlottesville isn't sure if it'll be there past the 26th. Riverside, California, has been raided and still stands. And cops keep hassling the good people of Honolulu.

Yet Chicago keeps going without a camp. They are gonna need gear, too.

Let's show the nation that this movement can't be squashed by billionaire mayors or colluding authorities. They may have the cash, but we have the numbers.


Observations on the Post-Raid Occupation in New York (Updated):
The creepiest thing that the Rude Pundit saw today over at Occupy Wall Street at Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan was a pair of large, short-haired white men in suits and black trenchcoats. G-Tweedledee was video recording the scene while G-Tweedledum was watching the recording on one of those extra strong ToughBook laptops. The Rude Pundit turned his camera on them, as they were standing right next to him near the edge of 1 Liberty Plaza. When they noticed, they moved further up the plaza. When security cleared the area, they were allowed to stay. And when the Rude Pundit filmed them again, they looked directly at and filmed him.

Secret Service? FBI? CIA? Who knows? But those fuckers were intimidating and frightening, which was, of course, part of the idea.

The Rude Pundit marched with the OWS remnants from their recon position at Duarte Park, about 10 blocks uptown. Up at Duarte, we were bordered by two lines of cops, not allowing us to walk off into the streets. The cops followed us along the march down to Zuccotti Park. We were joined by a wandering trumpeter across Varick Street. He played "When Johnny Comes Marching Home" and merged with the march. Finally, arriving at Zuccotti Park, we were blocked from entering the space by the NYPD, despite a judge's early morning order reversing the eviction that Mayor Michael Bloomberg had ordered.

It is not overstating the matter to say that Bloomberg and the NYPD were willfully in contempt of court. A judge said they were supposed to act one way. They acted in the opposite way. That's pretty clearly a violation of a court order. So instead the protesters surrounded the park in a barricaded path while others were arrested at Duarte.

Arrests happened at Zuccotti, mostly people trying to jump the barricades to get into the center of the park. The Rude Pundit saw (and recorded) a couple of them, including a man who tried to plant a large American flag in the park. He was slammed to the ground by the cops, who took his flag and rolled it up. They put the Stars and Stripes into a paddy wagon, while they put the man in the back. They locked the doors. They drove them both away.

The Rude Pundit heard some near him jeering the arrested, laughing about them being raped at Riker's Island. He turned on one older fuck, a douchebag past his prime. He asked the douchebag what he'd do. "Arrest 'em all. They're a bunch of criminal scum," he sneered. As the Rude Pundit asked the cock-faced bastard another question, the dude said, "That's all. I'm done. Move along now."

"Move along now?" The Rude Pundit said. "How about 'Okay, thanks'?" He said to move along again, and the Rude Pundit laughed in his corrupt fucking face.

Right now, we await a decision no whether or not the original order stands. But even if it does, will Bloomberg call the police off? And if he won't, who will enforce the will of the courts?

Remember: they were going to shut this down. They were always going to toss the tents and toss people into jail. They had to. That's who they are. They were always going to follow the same script they always do. They, the big “They,” the “They” that has the police in their pockets, the “They” that is always opposed to the “we,” as in “We, the People."

It had to end, the occupation, in order for it to flourish. Except it will not have ended in failure, no matter what the judge or the mayor say or do.

Update: The occupation is dead. Long live the occupation.
Late post today: At OWS, waiting to see what happens.


Now Newt?:
Really, GOP? Newt Gingrich now? Really? Deciding to move on to Newt Gingrich because Herman Cain was too tainted by a sex scandal is like moving on to crack once meth has lost its allure. Just shut the fuck up and nominate Mitt Romney as your mad godhead already.

Newt Gingrich is as appalling a globule of corrupt phlegm that the rheumatic lungs of the body politic has ever hacked up. Forget for a moment his government shutdown, his push for investigating every fake scandal of the Bill Clinton administration, his being driven out of DC like a rabid raccoon because of ethics violations, his hypocritical flogging of family values while he was ending every marriage by fucking another woman (and that's leaving out the hospital visit to his cancer-ridden first wife to discuss the terms of a break-up, not to mention his line of credit at Tiffany's). Forget all that. If you want to know what a vindictive, awful, petty motherfucker this motherfucker is, check this out:

When things were gearing up for the release of the Starr Report on Clinton, Gingrich wanted to impeach Al Gore, too. Not for anything the then-Vice President did, but for what he might do if he were president: "Gingrich believes that the report will be so tough that Clinton will be impeached. The thinking then goes that Gore, as his successor, will pardon Clinton. This, of course, leaves Gore in place as the incumbent president, which is not something the Republicans wish to have happen. So once Gore has pardoned Clinton, Gingrich's thinking goes, the Congress will impeach Gore for having pardoned Clinton. As one of these close associates of Gingrich said to me, 'You can't have a Clinton strategy without a Gore strategy.'"

You understand? He doesn't care. He doesn't fucking care. Drag the country through the upheaval of impeachment once? Fuck, why not do it again. And again. He only seeks to service a disgraced ideology, and he is part of the reason it's disgraced. Gingrich is just giddy, bloated rich windbag whose academic credentials give him the imprimatur of expertise where none exists. He is 100 pounds of shit in a 50 pound bag.

His idiotic Contract with America, which heaved itself out the same post-Reagan cesspool as Grover Norquist's destructive pledge, leads directly to the current partisan madness that has wreaked havoc on the nation. He nearly ripped the nation apart. Nominating Newt Gingrich for president is like giving a drunk the keys to a new car right after he wrapped the last one around a telephone pole.

And, as ever, “Fuck you, Newt Gingrich.”

Organizing Blanket the Earth:
As more of you volunteer to organize for Blanket the Earth on November 25, let's make sure people know who you are. The Rude Pundit's not gonna post the info here because, well, it's cold out here in the real world.

Instead, post your info on the Blanket the Earth Facebook page. Atlanta, you're taken care of. You can also email the Rude Pundit to tell him it's cool for him to post it there.

He'll be talking about it this morning on The Stephanie Miller Show at 9:30 a.m. ET.

And let's hope that all the OWS encampments aren't wrecked by police before Black Friday.

(Genuine catching-up-with-the-news rudeness in a bit.)


Keeping the Momentum Going:
Lots of people have gotten involved so far in Blanket the Earth. So instead of posting today, let's just link to yesterday's video and plan.

(And the Rude Pundit is in New Orleans, probably drunk right now, getting ready to be the guest writer at a lunch with Roy Blount, Jr. tomorrow.)


Blanket the Earth: The Plan:
Ever since I first mentioned the idea of getting cold weather gear to Occupy Wall Street campers around the nation, I've heard from dozens of people about what exactly they could do. Could they donate money? Where could they send gear? What is the plan?

Here goes:
1. The idea: on November 25, the day after Thanksgiving, people will gather in designated spots in cities around the country where there are encampments of OWS protesters.

2. They will have warm weather gear to donate to the protesters. This can be blankets, socks, sleeping bags, hand and foot warmers, sweaters, or anything you think can be used to keep the camping protesters warm throughout the winter. The items can be secondhand (and clean, you know). New items can be purchased whenever, preferably not on the exploitative day coined by marketers as "Black Friday."

3. People will gather in designated places in each city near the OWS encampments in order to donate the items. I will post a list of organizers next week. The organizers will say where the Blanket the Earth group should meet. For example, in Atlanta, they have decided to gather at 60 Walton St. NW.

4. Yes, donations at any time are great. But Blanket the Earth is not organizing as a group to accept donations of any kind. If you want to participate in the day, give someone who is going the items you'd like to donate. Also, I'm not accepting any monetary donations for this. If you want to donate money, that's generous of you, and you should give to things like Occupy Supply.

5. The goal here is to show our support not just through the kindness of monetary donations, but by being physically present to demonstrate that we're here for the protesters.

6. Yes, there is a chance that you may end up being the only person in your town to show up.

7. Organizers should send me a message on how people can contact them in their cities. Write, as ever, to rudepundit_at_yahoo.com (and you can send me questions there). You can also post info on the Blanket the Earth Facebook page or you can follow and respond on Twitter to @blankettheearth.

8. Spread the word. Use your own social networks to get out the information. Let's make sure the people who are the foot soldiers in this movement know that they are appreciated and that we have their backs.

More info to come, including where to meet in NYC. And you can check out this video that says some of the same info, except with OWS in the background:

Thanks to all who have said they would participate so far.

And don't worry - more regular rudeness coming.
Late Post Today (Obviously):
Because fog shut down LaGuardia Airport like the town in that John Carpenter movie (if only there had been ghost pirates).

Back in a bit with a Blanket the Earth video and post.


The Rude Pundit Among Respectable Author-Type Folks:
This weekend, the Rude Pundit will be taking part in the Words and Music 2011 festival in New Orleans, put on by the Pirate's Alley Faulkner Society. He and Roy Blount, Jr. will be your lunchtime entertainment on Friday. And on Saturday morning, he'll be on a panel on the Internet and artists with Andrei Codrescu and others. (That one is actually a change in the published schedule.)

Chances are that he'll be drunk a great deal of the time at the Napoleon House.

If you're at the festival, come on over and give a "Hey." Hopefully, he'll be sober enough to respond.
Election Lesson: Republicans Learn That Americans Aren't Quite as Crazy as They Are:
Let's put this in perspective. For the last year, Republicans have been walking around with big hard-ons, sticking them in everyone's face, saying, "Yeah, aren't you so impressed with how big my cock is?" For a good chunk of the year, the media and the public and, indeed, many Democrats have been responding, "Yes, yes, that's a really huge erection you've got there, Cantor." And some of them have added, "Can we get some work done now?" To which the tumescent Republicans have said, "No. We can't get any work done at all until you talk more about how big my cock is with this raging boner." Which would lead to more talk about, oh, gee, just how enormous a hard-on it is. So instead of actually accomplishing anything. all everyone does is sit around and talk about Republican dicks.

Yesterday, voters across the country smacked those erections and said, "Get those fucking things out of our faces."

In Ohio, Republican Governor John "Bill O'Reilly's Ball Washer" Kasich got cock-punched by over 60% of voters, who didn't just overturn the Senate's anti-collective bargaining bill that "sought to end binding arbitration to settle contracts with safety forces [and] ban strikes for other public workers." No, instead Kasich got his ass handed to him on a platter because he went right for the wallets of the middle and working classes. And they stopped the mugging.

In Mississippi (no, really, fuckin' Mississippi), nearly 60% of voters said, "You know, we like birth control and IVF and, shhh, abortion" by rejecting zygote rights, or the "Personhood Amendment," which would have meant that every miscarriage was unintentional manslaughter (actually, that's not an absurd interpretation of this idiotic, woman-hating proposal). Lieutenant Gov. Phil Bryant had said that if the amendment failed, "Satan wins," so it looks like a large chunk of the state went down to the crossroads.

In Maine, over 60% of voters overturned a Republican law that ended same-day voter registration. Why? Because it was just an obvious, bullshit way to disenfranchise Democrats, even more so than voter i.d. bills.

In Arizona, the Republican Senate president, Russell Pearce, who is not the unholy Aussie spawn of Russell Crowe and Guy Pearce, has lost a recall election to a less nutzoid Republican (who is even more humorously named "Jerry Lewis"). Pearce is the dude who made Arizona into the laughingstock of the world by authoring vicious anti-immigrant legislation (although Alabama didn't exactly get the joke). How significant is this? "Pearce becomes the first sitting Senate president in the nation and the first Arizona legislator ever to lose a recall election. He would be required to step down immediately."

Let's not get ahead of ourselves, though. Let's not cheer jubilantly that the year of Republican overreach has completely been turned on its head. Ohio also approved a non-binding amendment opting out of President Obama's health care reform law. And in Mississippi, that guy who said that shit about Satan winning? Yeah, he's governor now. And Mississippians approved a voter i.d. law.

The lesson here is not that the nation is turning against Republicans, per se, but it is saying, "Whoa, we're not that crazy and cruel." The real lesson is that the Tea Party is dead. The only hard-on it's got left is the one that rigor mortis causes. It's sinking into the ocean like so many boxes of fine Earl Grey. The only thing Republicans need to figure out is if they are tied so tightly to the corpse that it drags them down into the drink, too.


Republicans Believe Something Except When They Don't (or Why Mitt Romney Is Their Perfect Candidate):
So, let's just get this right, dear, sweet GOP:

Here's Republican Senator Jon Kyl of the awful state of Arizona on September 8, 2011, talking about President Obama's jobs bill: "Faced with the reality of historic unemployment rates and record federal debt, I had hoped that President Obama, by now, would understand that even more government spending doesn't create jobs."

And here's Republican Senator Jon Kyl of the idiotic state of Arizona on September 13, 2011, at a hearing about potential cuts in the defense budget if the Superduper Committee of Congressional Superfriends fails (as it will): "[W]ith defense, for example, you’ve got high unemployment of returning veterans to begin with. You have reduction in end strength. You’ve got more people potentially unemployed. You got people making radios and building ships and so on. And if those cuts, therefore, end up reducing the employment in those industries and the amount of money spent in those areas, obviously it could delay economic recovery."

You see what happened there? In case you've got brain damage or are from Arizona, let's make it perfectly clear: Republican Senator Jon Kyl of the fucktarded state of Arizona said that government spending doesn't create jobs but that if you cut government spending, you'll lose jobs. Or, in other words, government spending creates jobs.

How fucked up does a group of people have to be to think that they have anything like an "ideology"? How fucked up do voters have to be to keep putting these grifters and grafters into office? So infrastructure spending doesn't create jobs but bomber manufacturing does. How is one different than the other? Oh, right. One creates things that give Republicans raging erections. The other spending just makes things that are fucking useful and necessary.

Of course, this kind of rank hypocrisy ain't surprising in any way, shape, or form. How many examples can you come up with off the top of your head? Family values Republicans who fuck male prostitutes? Bill Clinton and Anthony Weiner need to be condemned, but Clarence Thomas and Herman Cain are cool? Howzabout another one that doesn't directly involve sex:

Another worthless thing that makes the yahoo voters slaver is when Republicans assert that "government regulations" are killing jobs, so we need to gut EPA rules and anything else that might be, you know, for the safety and health of the workers. It's a lie, a lie that anyone honest will actually tell you is a lie. (No, really: the Rude Pundit asks friends of his that are small business owners this all the time. Just last week, when he put the question of the burden of regulations to an entrepreneur pal, she just stared at him and said, "No, what's hurting my business is that people need jobs to pay for things." This shit is really that cut and dried.)

However, when it comes to something the GOP hates, workplace safety regulations are the tits, man. For what are Republican legislatures in Kansas, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere attempting to do? Shut down family planning clinics where abortions are performed. Their tool? Motherfuckin' government regulations.

Yep, by holding them to a whole new batch of new regulations, the clinics in these states will either close or give up performing abortions. And many jobs will be lost, specifically and by design. And women in those states will have unwanted children, many of which will end up being supported by government spending. And some women will have illegal abortions, which will end up in them needing further medical care, much of it paid for by the state.

Oh, wait. Actually, it's very clever. Republicans are demonstrating just how burdensome regulations by making them as onerous as possible and creating havoc just to prove a point. Or they're just dicks angling for votes in the piranha pool of the extreme right wing.

Today, Erick "Erick" Erickson writes, in the blog RedState (motto: "The reason why that blobby fuck appears on your CNN") that the inevitable nomination of serial flip-flopper Mitt Romney will destroy everything sacred about conservatism. Two things: Romney actually represents the craven, amoral, opportunistic GOP better than just about anyone else, so, of course, he should be the nominee. And there is nothing left to destroy in conservatism. It's been hollowed out from the inside by parasites like Romney and Erickson.


Karl Rove's Ex-Leather Slave Watches the Herman Cain Scandal Unfold:
He stares at his cell phone, wondering if he should call Anderson Cooper. He had just watched the press conference featuring Sharon Bialek, the fourth woman now to say that Herman Cain sexually harassed her. He had read and seen Cain's vociferous denials. They don't matter, he thinks, goddamn, they don't matter. This stinks of him, he thinks. And if anyone knows the smell of Karl Rove, it's the Republican operative's ex-leather slave.

Karl Rove kept his leather slave in the basement of the White House when Rove worked for then-President George W. Bush. The leather slave was chained there, between Teddy Roosevelt's rhino horn dildo collection and William Henry Harrison's sputum trough. Rove would use and abuse the leather slave, having rough - no, violent - sex with him whenever the mood struck, sex that often involved various implements and tools and, well, rhino horns being shoved into the leather slave's ass, that involved razors and blood-lapping, that involved shit and piss and vomit, whatever nightmare scenario Rove wanted to enact. The leather slave escaped in 2006, and he has lived a quiet, nearly invisible life ever since, trying to keep Rove from finding him and imprisoning him again.

Many things have happened that have tempted the ex-leather slave to urge action against Rove by the media, things that have had the stench of Rove on them, like his attempt to fan racial fires back in 2008 by trying to make it seem as if he backed Obama over Clinton. The birth certificate thing was too obvious, too broad a joke to come from Rove, the ex-leather slave knows. But this Herman Cain thing. That's got Rove written all over it. The bonus is that it's true. Not that it would matter at this point.

Look at how masterful it is: Cain was emerging as the spoiler to Rove's chosen candidate, Mitt Romney. Rove knew Rick Perry would implode. But Cain was a surprise. And so he leaked the info on the sexual harassment case settlements to his people at Politico. Of course, they bit. Of course, Cain would fuck up the entire defense because, shit, he was guilty. What's there to defend? Of course, of course, of course. That's why Rove is the gallbladder of the American body politic, the flesh sac where the bile of our national discourse is concentrated into a poison that can dissolve other cells.

The ex-leather slave rents a small apartment in Williamsburg, Virginia, and he makes his living now as a colonial reenactor, telling people all about the joys of being a blacksmith. Leather tanner was too obvious. He loves being in disguise. He loves being part of the way in which people perceive the history of the nation. He loves always having a weapon in his hands in case Rove shows up to claim him.

He pulls his hand away from the phone. The verdict in the Michael Jackson doctor case has come in. There will be nothing else to talk about. He cannot chase the real Rove out of the shadows. The thought of his ex-master makes the ex-leather slave feel the thrusts and hear the grunts. He wants to scream out to Cooper, to anyone, "He has never gone away. He has just slunk into the dark depths of SuperPACs and money-laundering campaign operations. You can't escape him. You may hate Cain, but it's just the start. It's just the start."

He starts to sweat. Maybe, if he calls, Rove will find him. He can't risk it. He turns back to the TV. Ahh, the sweet bliss of the media engorging on the buffet of a celebrity death trial.
Late Post Today:
Meetings about Blanket the Earth and working on a video for this week all about it (because moving pictures is much more betterer than tired ol' words).

So far, we have people organizing in Atlanta, Austin, Trenton, Nashville, Chicago, and more. The Rude Pundit's got NYC. Even if you're in those cities and want to get involved, contact the Rude Pundit and he'll hook you up with others.

Back later with more luminous rudeness.


A 12 Year-Old Talks to Occupy Wall Street Protesters (A Blanket the Earth Post):
Here's your heartwarming and politically relevant video for the weekend. A 12 year-old associate of the Rude Pundit - think of her as his James O'Keefe except with journalistic ethics. She was down at Occupy Wall Street in Lower Manhattan last week, and she interviewed some of the people there, including a professor, someone who was fired for organizing a union at Walmart, a homeless woman, and a former soldier whose nurse mother lost her retirement funds.

The Rude Pundit is going full steam ahead with his idea to give blankets and coats and hand warmers and more to the OWSers on Friday, November 25. He'll be coordinating things in general and organizing whatever donors can be there in New York City. He's had volunteers offer to coordinate in Austin and Atlanta.

Howzabout some people for some really cold cities, like Chicago or Boston? Head over to the Facebook page or Twitter feed to learn more.


Poverty Isn't Just for Poor People Anymore:
The Brookings Institute released a new study on the concentration of extreme poverty neighborhoods around the nation. Such neighborhoods have poverty rates of more than 40% of the people "living" there. Existing in extreme poverty" is analogous to getting locked in a cage with horny hippos who batter you around for a while, drag you down under the shit-filled water until you nearly drown, and then rape your ass while you catch your breath, before doing it again. And again.

Surprise, surprise: Brookings found that, after a steep decline in rates of people living in extreme poverty areas in the 1990s, it rose starkly from 2000-2009. How much? After a 27.8% decline in the 90s, the number in the USA rose by 32.9% in the 00s. Huh. Wonder what was so different about those decades? Had to be something drastically different, but the Rude Pundit can't imagine. It must all be illegal Mexicans.

The number of extreme poverty neighborhoods (or "tracts," as the study says) rose by 36%. Most starkly, this affected "small-metro" areas, where the number of tracts rose by 75%, with an 81% rise in the number of people living in extreme poverty areas. The Midwest was the worst off, with the numbers doubling. And where are you fucked beyond fucked if you're dirt poor in America? Ohio, man. (By the way, don't look so smug, California. You're pretty damn fucked, too.)

Yeah, Ohio pretty much sucks hobo balls right now. Youngstown, Dayton, Toledo, Cleveland, Columbus, Akron, all have had a growth spurt in sections of towns or suburbs where people live in a blighted hellscape with shitty schools, shitty services, shitty homes, shitty crime rates, and, more than likely, tons of actual shit.

Ohio needs massive spending in order to bring its citizens back from the pit of despair. Of course, Ohio's got a Republican governor, John Kasich, who instead has advocated budget cuts and gutting collective bargaining (which will probably be overturned by ballot initiative by people in Ohio who are smarter than their former Fox "news" host governor). Read Mac McClelland's essential Mother Jones article on Ohio if you want a wrist-cuttingly stark picture of the degradation of the American dream.

Truly, truly, truly, the question everyone in this country should be asking is not why things happen like last night's port blockade and subsequent riot in Oakland. What they should be asking is why aren't riots occurring nonstop.


Photos That Are a Nice Start:

Look, the general strike called by Occupy Oakland could have been bigger. It could have involved more union members. It could have shut shit down. Instead, a few thousand people marched, supported by sympathy marches around the country.

Some banks closed and bus lines were disrupted. 13% of the area's teachers joined in. But the port did not close, as was rumored early on. And not many of the longshoremen joined in. It was a solid protest, not a true general strike.

What the Oakland action does is provide a template for future actions. We live in a nation that hasn't seen a true general strike since 1946 in, well, Oakland, and a nation that hasn't seen a massively disruptive strike since, perhaps the UPS strike in 1997. Workers need to understand once again that the strike is a legitimate tool of dissent. And as the rank and file of the Occupy movement grows, so will the sympathy for a larger action.

That march up there is fine. It is the advance team of the people really taking back the nation.
Late Post Today, But Jump on the Blanket the Earth Train:
Let's keep the momentum going here for the Rude Pundit's idea for bringing warmth to the Occupy Wall Streeters all over the U.S., if not the world.

The deal again: On Friday, November 25, a group meets at a designated location in each city where there's an OWS encampment. We bring blankets, socks, hand warmers, and more. They can be bought or secondhand. The donation will then become a show of support from those of us not camped out, a way of saying, "You keep going. We need you."

Let's organize more on the Twitter and Facebook machines.

More info soon. And feel free to make suggestions about this effort.

Back later with more ignoble rudeness.


Yes, Liberals Are Totally Responsible for the Herman Cain Sexual Harassment Story:
You know on thing that's really hilarious about conservatives? How they preach the "personal responsibility" dogma and then, when they're caught doing something wrong or fucking up, it's always someone else's fault. Asked something in a debate that makes 'em give an answer that reveals how batshit or stupid they are? It's a "gotcha" question. It's discovered that a leading presidential candidate settled a pair of sexual harassment claims against him? He's now "a prominent Conservative targeted by liberals simply because they disagree with his politics."

Sean Hannity went full conspiracy theory on the Cain harassment story on his Fox "news" show, comparing Cain to Clarence Thomas and his whiny "high-tech lynching" remarks. Ann Coulter and Dick Morris joined in for a hideous three-way that involved mouth-to-ass action followed by a comparison of their shit-eating grins, which looked that way because they had actually eaten shit. The right-wing practitioners of bloggery also tried to get in on the action.

Now, a liberal could get pretty goddamn upset and sputter, "No..fuck you...After what you did to Bill Clinton? And you're gonna accuse us of anything? Blow a rhino dick, you fuckers."

But screw it. The jig is up. They caught us. Again. You're right, you smart smarty conservatives. This is totally the work of the same liberal cabal that faked Obama's birth certificate and made Larry Craig like to get his cock sucked in men's rooms.

Here's how we did it:
See, back in the late 1990s, while Clinton was still in office, we knew that America was going to be begging to elect an executive from junk food restaurants to be president, probably once we triggered the Obama option that we'd been working on since 1961. Knowing that the most likely candidate would be Herman Cain, when he became the head of the National Restaurant Association, we went into action. We had oppo research that Cain liked to tell dirty jokes and talk and ask questions about the sexuality of the people around him. We got two of our female operatives to get into a position to be close to him at the workplace, and when he acted as expected, they brought accusations of inappropriate behavior against Cain.

The most insidious part of our liberal plot was that we couldn't have it come out then or it would have ruined our chance to disgrace Cain over a decade later. So our operatives took the settlements they coerced Cain into offering in order to bury the story, only to create an online news journal named "Politico," filling it with reporters who criticize Obama for cover, and then using it for the specific purpose of revealing the Cain story.

Our timing was impeccable: Wait until one of the most unelectable, insane figures to ever be in contention for a party nomination to be riding a crest of public interest even though there is not a chance in hell that he'd ever win in a general election and then hit him with allegations that don't even involve actual sex. Yes, we were sure that the same people who believe in his idiotic economic plan, who think that killing people trying to cross the border is a good idea, who want a president who thinks that his ignorance of world leaders is an asset, who has shifted his opinion on abortion, who blames people who were fired from their jobs for being poor during the worst economy since the Great Depression, yes, yes, we were sure that what would turn people against Herman Cain is the idea that he flirted with a couple of anonymous women who worked for him. We really thought that his followers would say, "You know, I agree with Cain that Planned Parenthood exists in order to kill black babies, but his asking 'personal questions of a sexually suggestive nature' to his employees is just too crazy for me."

Oh, how we thought we had enough layers for plausible deniability, not to mention the obvious alibi that it was either the Romney or Perry campaigns, but Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh were just too damn smart for us.