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James O'Keefe Visits Occupy Wall StreetYou all remember James O'Keefe! He's that conservative "activist" of questionable intelligence and ethics who likes to play "pranks" on noted left-wing organizations like ACORN. (He memorably made a video implying ACORN was supporting criminal activity, only to then have the whole thing outed as essentially a scam. Thanks, Jim!
Anyway, now he's down at the Occupy Wall Street protests. I was hoping he planned on making a video that's a bit more honest and forthright than usual, cause I don't want to have to write an update/apology later. But instead he did a bit where he pretends to be a banker who works on Wall Street and interviews people.
First, James is offered cake by a protester who admits that she doesn't "have a f*cking idea" what the protests are about. Then, an ambitious protester asks him to "finance his interests," investing billions of dollars and explaining that "when something like this happens there are huge opportunities that emerge." The protester refuses to go further into it in public (I'm going to go ahead and assume international tie-dye interests), but does get around to requesting that James fund him to the tune of several billion dollars. When 'James the Banker' asks where the money would be going, the OWS protester explains the money would be going to the issuance of bonds to "fund agencies that are building 'Constitutional World Federation'." I wonder if he has a term sheet available we could look over...
Anyway, it seems pretty clear that James, in usual fashion, is looking for the silliest people available to make the whole event seem really pointless and stupid. Still, doesn't look like he had to try very hard...
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Enraged Occupy Wall Street ProtesterThis Occupy Wall Street protester has some seriously repressed rage. Okay, I get that. As a wise sign-holder spotted last week said, "Sh*t is f*cked up and bullsh*t." This guy no doubt agrees, starting out with a scary, "Leave Britney Alone"-ish type of rant, begging for help and railing against the "a**holes and their f*cking yachts."
Then he switches gears. Alarmingly quickly. It's almost like he realizes he's being a total spaz and tries to reign in the madness. He smiles, laughs and then says it's important not to be violent. And then, he rambles something about sustainable something-or-other and gets worked up all over again. "Save our country!" Please get this man his meds.
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Mute Kanye West Visits Occupy Wall StreetIt's rare to see Kanye West rendered speechless... Usually he'll just fall back on implying that someone in the immediate vicinity doesn't care about black people. Or maybe just complaining about not being able to find persian rugs with cherubs on them.
But when Kanye made his way to Occupy Wall Street... he was apparently stunned. So stunned that he needed Russell Simmons to speak on his behalf. (NOTE: If you're ever in a situation where you think, "You know what? Russell Simmons could probably express what I have to say better than I could," might as well just give up and go home. Nothing good is coming out of that day.) No one man should have all that power... to waste 3 minutes of my time.
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Occupy Atlanta and John LewisCivil rights icon and Congressman John Lewis decided he wanted to address the Occupy Wall Street solidarity protesters in Atlanta, Georgia, on October 7, 2011. He never got the chance. The Occupy Atlanta group voted not to let him speak. I'll say it again. They VOTED not to allow a Civil Rights icon and Congressman to speak.
As Lewis stood by, the protesters proposed, re-proposed and re-proposed having the congressman address the assembly. Ultimately, even though some in the crowd apparently really DID want to hear what Lewis had to say, they were overruled. Lewis was sent away.
FYI: Lewis was later asked what he wanted to say to the group:
I was going to say, I stand with you. I support you, what you're down.
NOTE: You may notice that there's a guy with a megaphone saying a lot of random banalities, after which the entire crowd repeats what he's saying for no apparent reason. This started at the New York protest. Because speakers were not allowed to talk into megaphones, one person would speak and others would then repeat what they said to those in the back who couldn't hear. But doing it when the person speaking has a megaphone and can clearly be heard? Yeah, that's roughly as intelligent as voting against hearing a Civil Rights icon and Congressman speak in favor of a guy who looks like Vincent Schiavelli and probably hasn't had an original political thought since Ford's "Whip Inflation Now" campaign.
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Angry Radiohead ProtestersOn September 30, 2011, word began to spread online that Oxford, England's favorite sons - Radiohead - would be performing at the Occupy Wall Street protest. Radiohead has long been a politically outspoken, some might say downright anti-corporate, band, but still, kind of an odd mix of music-to-event. It's hard to really get your hardcore protest on to, say, "Fake Plastic Trees."
Still, people were energized. They were excited. And when it came out that the rumor was just that - a total hoax - people were (understandably) disappointed. Most went back to their regularly scheduled marching, but some, like this guy, were really pissed off. Karma Police, arrest this man. Or at least give him a strong talking-to.
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