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Please refrain from copy and pasting messages over and over and over, or you will be removed from the forum. We all have input to make so let's keep this at a discussion and not a text block of commercials. Here are some helpful guidelines for good discussion and debate recommended by one of our members:

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Note: The opinions expressed by the moderators and members of this discussion board do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Occupy Together or Occupy Wall St. In the spirit of free information, open discussion, and the freedom of expression, members are able to speak about issues relating and directly pertaining to the Occupy movement. You will be banned for hate speech or intentional misinformation and please refrain from any violent rhetoric; this is a peaceful movement. Thank you.
Separation of state and corporations
  • RobertH September 2011 +1 -1
    Separation of state and corporations should be one of the central demands of the Occupy Movement.

    The basic idea is extremely simple: Just like we have laws separating church and state, and for obvious reasons, there should be laws separating corporations and state. Otherwise, corporations will continue to dictate law making and policy making for their own benefit and to the detriment of everyone else.

    The reason, I think, separation of state and corporations should be a central demand of the Occupy Movement is that it goes to the heart of the problem AND has immediate intuitive appeal: Most anyone among the 99% who hears about the concept will tend to agree with that we need laws prohibiting corporations from unduly influencing the political process. Campaign finance laws are one obvious example, but we also need laws outlawing corporate lobbying and many other, more indirect ways in which corporations exert political influence. It's really a no-brainer and should be something everyone - even the Tea Party - can agree on.

    The Occupy Movement strikes me as the perfect platform to publicize this idea. The separation of state and corporations dovetails perfectly with the Movement's fundamental anti-corporate greed message, while packaging that message in a specific demand that EVERYONE can understand and relate to and that can, at least in principle, actually be implemented. We probably can't make corporations less greedy, but we can deprive them of the ability to let their greed interfere with the political process.

    Moreover, there is already an indepent movement underway calling for an amendment of the Constitution along those lines, called Move to Amend:

    http://movetoamend.org/

    There is also a site called

    www.ultimatecivics.com,

    started by one of the key players in this area, Riki Ott, Executive Director, Ultimate Civics. I am not quite sure about the relationship between the two sites, but they appear to be closely related.

    So, the idea would be to propagate the message of separation and state as a way to rally the American public around a specific, fundamental, and intuitive demand that can actually be met. Perhaps an alliance with the above movements that have been working on this issue for years would be helpful.

    On a general note: As enthusiastic as I am about the Occupy Movement, I am greatly concerned that it may not go beyond the point of protests and that the American public will lose interest at some point. The movement needs to come up with a list of specific, reasonable demands very soon to legitimize its protests in the eyes of the public. It also needs to come up with at least an articulate spokesperson (not necessarily a leader) who can communicate its demands effectively to the media and the public. Otherwise the Occupy Movement will, at the end, be written off as another rag-tag outfit with no coherent agenda.

    I hope no one will interpret my constructive criticism as anything but that - I am very supportive of the movement and understand that, right now, the idea is just to raise awareness of corporate greed, to start a conversation, to bring people together, etc. But if we are really serious about change, we'll have to take this to the next level at some point - before the momentum is lost.

    Robert









  • joshfishman September 2011 +1 -1
    we need to meld this cause with getmoneyout.com

    I wholeheartedly agree that we need to get behind an acheivable goal and that this is it

    we have to demand an amendment to the constitution to get corporate money out of politics

    only then will we the people be able to get our country back!
  • adminadmin October 2011 +1 -1
    I don't think there needs to be a rush to come to consensus. If the momentum is lost, those that are passionate about change can build a common dream. I think the fact that we are so 'comfortable' overall as a populace provides a major barrier to being proactive about the corruption in the government. If more can break out of that consumer trance, and become actively aware on the association of cause and effect in the marketplace.
  • RobertH October 2011 +1 -1
    That's just the reason why momentum is important: Right now, people are beginning to wake up - and listen - but most, and that includes myself, may soon sink back into what you aptly call the consumer trance, unless they can see the next step, at least in outline form.

  • janet304 October 2011 +1 -1
    ACCOUNTABILTY FROM EVERY SINGLE POLITICIAN. AS WELL AS ACCOUNTABILITY FOR ALL GOV. EMPLOYEES.
    PROSECUTE THOSE INVOLVED IN THE 2008 CRASH OF OUR ECONOMY. POLITICIANS SHOULD NOT BE ABOVE THE LAW.
  • Darkwolf October 2011 +1 -1
    I believe we need a "separation of state and corporation", perhaps that means a separate political body to deal with corporate law(s), but DEFINITELY we need to get corporations OUT of contributing to campaign finances. Politicians in this country need to be responsible to us, the citizens, NOT the corporations. Think this is a major point and one that will resonate well.

    Regarding Janet304's comments above, one of the problems our country faces right now is that politicians not only put their personal career goals ahead of the good of the country, but the good of their parties ahead of the good of the country, and even those that don't are in a constant re-election mode, again, I believe partially due to the influence of corporate and lobby money.

    Too bad politicians can't be made to say an oath at the beginning of every session to do what is best for the country and to represent the public that elected them. Also too bad corporate and lobby money doesn't go into a general pool so that there is no way the elected politicians would be directly influenced by the donations.
  • Max October 2011 +1 -1

    We the People who couldn't afford to incorporate(hence, not treated as a person)

    Would like to have a cash back reward, for having given up our rights, homes, money, government, health, work, business, family, and lives.


    gosh, seems this has happened before.
  • blue October 2011 +1 -1
    This is the single biggest item of all the demands. Get money out of politics the it's government by the people again - as it should be.
  • AbstracTyler October 2011 +1 -1
    I agree that government corruption through corporate dollars is a key issue. The influence of corporate dollars has completely undermined and overshadowed the democratic nature that was a central pillar of its creation. I want to see the flow of money through our government. I want to know what bills are being passed and what they read. Bills are currently ridiculous. They are composed of legal speak which is not even applicable to the majority of the people even if we read them.

    Make government transparent. Every dollar that gets spent should be clearly traceable back to the source in tax dollars. Not to mention balancing the budget. That should go right along with transparency though. If we see a politician trying to spend more money than that which exists, they get thrown out.
  • friskimage October 2011 +1 -1
    This is a very important issue. Lobbying is no more than legalized bribery. The times that we are in are the perfect time for a 3rd political party. The Democrats and the Republicans have all become corrupted by the corporate lobbyists.
  • adminadmin October 2011 +1 -1
    I agree with you on that AbstracTyler: "TRANSPARENCY" If we can have a way to become more integrated into the political process as it flows it would allow "We the People" to sound the alarms as soon as they go astray again, which is inevitable.
  • buttaflly227 October 2011 +1 -1
    I totally agree that separation of State and Corporation is an EXCELLENT IDEA ! It's so true that history repeats itself because look at how the Church controlled everything back in the day and that's just what the corporations are doing now. Think of what impact that will have on the health industry, on tobacco, etc. I'm SO EXCITED ! These industries have the government in their pockets
  • Leo November 2011 +1 -1
    The separation of corporation and state is one of the main issues of an idea I recently came across and started a discussion on called 'The American Liberty True Democracy Party'. One of its six objectives supports the establishment of state banks for all states leading to a new federal reserve banking system that would be totally independent of the private banking system that currently dominates this country.