Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thursday Must Read: Police Raid Occupy Cal; Protesters Occupy BofA in SF, Get Arrested

by Robert Gammon
Thu, Nov 17, 2011 at 6:58 AM

Stories you shouldn’t miss:

1. UC Berkeley police and other law enforcement agencies raided the new Occupy Cal encampment on campus early this morning, clearing the forty or so tents that had sprung up on Sproul Plaza, the Chron and Trib report. The Occupy Cal encampment was smaller than the night before, and easier for police to clear, because many Occupy Cal protesters were in San Francisco yesterday for a large march through the city.

2. During that San Francisco march, protesters took over a Bank of America branch and occupied it, setting up a tent inside the bank and refusing to leave, the Chron and Trib report. About 100 protesters linked themselves arm-in-arm and chanted “Shame, Shame,” until they were eventually arrested by police. Some also shouted: “Banks got bailed out, we got sold out.”

3. The Occupy San Francisco encampment, meanwhile, has swelled to more than 200 tents, which means it’s now bigger than Occupy Oakland ever was. The Chron reports that Mayor Ed Lee met with representatives from Occupy SF yesterday, and asked them to downsize the encampment to about 100 tents.

4. Facing a large protest of their own, California State University board members retreated to a private room in Long Beach and voted to increase CSU tuition again, this time by 9 percent, the Chron reports. Outside the CSU board meeting, protesters from the ReFund California Coalition, which is made up of students, labor, activists, and others aligned with the Occupy movement, clashed violently with police who peppered sprayed demonstrators.

5. Some Occupy protesters, meanwhile, are expected to turn their attention to Cal State East Bay in Hayward today for a one-day strike by faculty who are protesting CSU financial priorities, the Daily Review reports. Labor groups and other protesters are expected to join striking faculty at the hilltop campus.

6. California universities and public schools, meanwhile, are expected to take another major financial hit in January because state tax revenues are much lower than anticipated, the Chron reports. The state may be forced to make $2 billion in cuts early next year as Republicans in the state legislature continue to block any proposals for tax increases.

7. The Richmond City Council is seriously considering divesting from large financial institutions that haven’t paid their fair share of federal taxes, the CoCo Times reports. Among those big banks is Wells Fargo, which has paid no federal taxes in the past three years. The council’s move is in line with one of the tactics from the Occupy movement that’s beginning to gain traction.

8. And a new state law will protect companies that honor the triple bottom line of people, planet, and profit, the Chron reports. The new law protects socially conscious companies from shareholder attempts to force the businesses to put profits above all else.

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