Friday, January 27, 2012

Suppression of Dissent in Diablo Valley (Concord, Walnut Creek, Diablo Valley College)

What follows is a chronology about the efforts of "Diablo Valley Movement and Students for a Democratic Society [MDS/SDS]" to establish a grassroots civil rights movement across Contra Costa County, with a state-wide support network, an effort spearheaded by FRH, an organizer for "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS", "Oscar Grant Committee (OGC), and "Occupy Concord", whose herculean effort was brought down by a sustained campaign against him personally by Internal Security Agents (Police, FBI, snitches, militia men).
The chronology is a compilation of media articles, and public messages to various independent journalists. It is posted here for the historical record, and if read in chronological order, will present a factual account for how grassroots civil-rights movement is suppressed in a suburban area.

Also see the Northbay MDS archive for Diablo Valley College Student for a Democratic Society (DVC SDS) [link]

2012-03-07 "Occupy Richmond doing a Rally in a United Front with other Occupy networks" message from "Occupy Richmond" organizer Jose R.:
It's official! Occupy Richmond has come together with members of Occupy Earthday and Occupy Berkeley and members of one of Occupy Oakland Commitees to make a March and Rally on April 20 2012.
The plan is to Educate people on Chevron and there dirty tactics and to Occupy Earth day and make it for the people free of Corporate domination.
The Date is set the Location and Time is in the Works.
But i will keep you posted this is kick ass different Occupys working together.
Occupy Concord and Diablo Valley MDS is more them welcome to come and be part of this.
The March will be in Richmond, and the other Occupy's contacted us so we have been heard by others.
Update from "Diablo Valley SDS/MDS" Street Organizer FRH: Both Diablo Valley MDS & Occupy Concord will be interested in showing solidarity! Diablo Valley MDS will make and bring picket signs!! I will also inform Occupy Vallejo, North Bay MDS & DVC SDS!

2012-02-17 "Update to the Occupistas of Concord" from FRH, founder of "Occupy Concord" and the "Diablo Valley SDS/MDS":
On workday Friday 2/17/12 over 500 people gathered and 450 marched from downtown Berkeley into the industrial blue collar district to protest the firing of 200 workers Latino without documents.
The protest was co-sponsored by the Occupy movement including Occupy Oakland & Occupy Concord.Diablo Valley SDS/MDS also endorsed the action and brought more than 100 picket signs, which articulated popular demands and were quickly snatched up and carried by the demographically diverse protesters which were nearly 50% Latino.
Around a dozen folks from Diablo Valley MDS/SDS, Oscar Grant Committee, and Occupy Concord participated in the wonderful positive protest action.
A similar firing of hundreds of undocumented Latino workers also occurred at the big steel mill out in Pittsburg, CA.
This Sunday, Feb.19, 10am -12 noon
Todos Santos Plaza

2012-02-17 "Fired Pacific Steel workers protest ICE raids"

Former Pacific Steel workers and supporters march down University Avenue after a rally in front of the Berkeley City Council chamber building in Berkeley, Calif. on Friday, Feb. 17, 2012. (Jane Tyska/Staff)

2012-01-27 "COINTELPRO ATTACKS OCCUPY CONCORD?" communique from FRH (organizer for "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS", "Occupy Concord", "Oscar Grant Committee"):
T.L. informed me sometime back that "Robert O. Williams" is a pseudonym / alias for J-- T-----, a private investigator and master of COINTELPRO style dirty tricks from Southern California.
As you may know he and a few lackeys have been engaged a "poison pen" smear campaign against me for several years now, as well as illegally hacking into Treasurer's computer of an allied organiztion in Diablo Valley, among other COINTELPRO type dirty tricks that seems to be his forte.
The following forwarded message indicates that he has recently turned his evil eye on "Occupy Concord". This explains some curious problems we have been having in Concord. It seems J-- T----- is paying far to much attention to our activity's in Occupy Concord. The arm of Sauron reaches far.
Occupy Concord had decided to have a educational film series. We arranged with Round Table Pizza to use their meeting room, as we (Diablo Valley SDS/MDS) have for years, for public events.
After we posted the event to the listserve [which is where I suspect J-- T----- saw it], somebody called Round Table Pizza [RTP] Corporate HQ and complained about "Occupy Concord" using the facility and about me in particular and my history of trouble with the law. I now suspect it was J-- T----- from the evidence in the post below.
RTP HQ sent the word down to the local pizza shop to renege on our deal to use the facility, three days before the event. We were shocked and outraged. We responded to RTP HQ saying they could have us as paying, pizza eating customers or angry "Occupy" protesters  picketing the restaurant and calling on other "Occupys" accross the country for solidarity and hitting them in the pocket book. This frightened RTP HQ . A high up boss from HQ called me back and overruled the other suit from RTP HQ and said that they had changed their mind for this one movie. We could go ahead and use the facility this time, but in the future we should find another venue.
We went ahead and had our event, it was fun ,and modestly successful. We decided to postpone the 2nd movie until after we decide what to do, at our next Occupy Concord GA on Feb 5. There has been some talk of holding a protest demo at RTP HQ, which is conveniently located in Concord for their political bias against the '99%', while they allow all sorts of other political and community groups to use their facilities. The local restaurant manager [Jesus Gonzales] has no problem with us and says he was just following orders from RTP HQ.
In the the "Robert O. Williams" [J-- T-----] post below he seems very concerned about both movie events.

No doubt he is curious as to how much damage his COINTELPRO style  "poison pen' dirty tricks campaigns are having on the movement. The fact that they will backfire in his face should give him little comfort.
This is further evidence  that J-- T----- is a oinker. If he is not a paid government/COINELPRO agent then he is doing their work for free, which is just as bad. Not only is he intent on attacking & smearing me and other Diablo Valley MDS/SDS activists, now he is attempting to harm the "Occupy" movement as well. Any body collaborating in any way with him should be held with the highest suspicion. The movement must be warned about about this curly tailed poser.
ROUND TABLE PIZZA  meeting room [2960 Treat Blvd., Concord, (corner of Treat & Oak Grove)]
6pm [gather,dinner & intro] 
6:45 pm [Movie, then discussion]
Thurs, Jan 12: "Capitalism: A Love Story" 2009, rated R, 127 minutes
Filmmaker Michael Moore (Sicko, Fahrenheit 9/11) takes on capitalism's roots, the floundering U.S. economy, and 2008's global financial meltdown and subsequent bank bailout in this rousing documentary. Combining stories about those who suffer most from Corporate America's greed and insatiable thirst for profits and the people most responsible for myriad crises, Moore embarks on another shocking fact-finding rampage.

Thurs, Jan 26: "Viva Zapata!" 1952, Not Rated
Marlon Brando earned an Oscar nod for his portrayal of Mexican revolutionary Emiliano Zapata, an illiterate peasant who rallies the countryside against the government and eventually ascends to his nation's presidency. Elia Kazan directs John Steinbeck's Oscar-nominated script that takes historical liberties, but captures the spirit of Zapata's unwavering commitment to his people. Anthony Quinn won an Oscar for his fiery portrayal of Zapata's brother.

2012-01-07 "OCCUPY CONCORD STARTS THE NEW YEAR 2012" message from "Occupy Concord":
99%ers! Welcome! Join Us!
Occupy Concord finished off the old year, 2011, with our 2nd powerful public protest rally & march in Todos Santos on Dec 17 against abuse of the 99% by the 1%.
Once again we generated headlines, controversy and sparked public debate on the issues.
We held our largest Concord GA [General Assembly] ever, with 35 people voting on and adopting 5 new demands to help crystallize and focus the issues.
Our 3 month old movement ended 2011 strong and is now ready to, after the holiday hiatus, to step into the New Year refreshed, determined and ready to struggle for a better community, a liberated country and justice for the people of the world.
We know that "organized people [the 99%] can beat organized money [the 1%]" if we are brave, steadfast and determined.
We know we have the power to  right the wrongs and change the world. The power is in the people.
Help us unleash, promote and develop that POWER.
Lets start the New year off stronger than ever!!!
Come to the "Occupy Concord" GA this Sunday.
1/8/12, 10am-NoonTodos Santos Plaza, Concord

2011-01-02 "2nd Anniversary of Oscar Grants Foul Killing marked by Vigil/Rally at Fruitvale BART" by "Oscar Grant Committee" organizer FRH:
On new years day, 2011, a racially diverse crowd of 150-175 people marked Oscars murder at the hands of BART police with statements from Grant family members, reminiscences of Oscar and pledges from family and community alike to carry on and intensify the struggle to get justice for all of the many victims of unjust police violence.
The Vigil/ Rally was called by the Grant family with solidarity from the family of Derrick Jones, another unarmed black man from the east Oakland neighborhood near Fruitvale BART who was recently shot up and killed by the OPD.
The "Oscar Grant Committee, to Stop Police Brutality and State Repression" that includes Oscars 'Uncle Bobby' and family friend Jack Bryson among its active members played a prominent role in organizing and sponsoring the event.
The event was organized in a little over two weeks time, using the Oscar Grant Committee's and Grant family's network of contacts.
The first part of the action was a candlelight vigil focusing on members of the Grant Family including Oscars mother Wanda was MC'ed by Uncle Bobby.
This was a collective sharing of grief and love with several prayers offered by ministers of different faiths including both christian and the NOI [Nation of Islam] minister Keith Mohammed.
Frank Jones, father of the slain Derrick Jones also spoke passionately and made common cause with the Grant family and vowed that this is only the beginning of a struggle for justice.
The well known attorney John Burris spoke on the epidemic of unjust police killing cases that have come to his office recently.
Dan Siegle the attorney from the National Lawyers Guild who is working with the Oscar Grant Committee and recently helped to defend the 152 protesters arrested in Oakland on Nov. 6th also spoke.
During the 2nd part of the event, Uncle Bobby turned it over to Oscar Grant Committee organizers, who broke out colorful Oscar Grant Committee and Diablo Valley College SDS [Students for a Democratic Society] picket signs and distributed them throughout the crowd.
The signs touched on the rallies themes, included: "We Are Oscar Grant", "Jail Killer Cops", "Stop Police Terror", "A Injury To One, Is An Injury To All", "Without Struggle, There Is No Justice" and a series of signs that said "Stop Police Brutality, Justice For ______" , with the blank spot filled in either with "Oscar" or one of the other unarmed victims of lethal police violence that the Oscar Grant Committee has voted to fight for such as Derrick Jones, Martin Cotton, and Guy Jarreau.
Several active Oscar Grant Committee members/leaders including Lesley Phillips, Dave Welsh and Elizabeth Addams spoke on the groups organizing projects and battles for justice.
Lesley informed the gathering of the recent Vallejo police killing of a returning black NVC [Napa Vally College] student during a film project that the Oscar Grant Committee is looking into and working with locals on.
Oscar Grant Committee members encouraged the gathering to join with them and car pool down to Santa Cruz on Sat., Jan.8th to protest the unjust 'State Repression' focused on the heroic whistle blowers, Bradley Manning and Wiki-leaks Julian Assange.
Other community and political organizations spoke or slammed some poetry during the open mike time or were present to show solidarity including the Grey Panthers, BAMN [By Any Means Necessary], the IBT [International Bolshevik Tendency], the ISO [International Socialist Organization], the Diablo Valley SDS/MDS [Movement for a Democratic Society], Berkley Liberation Radio, America Needs To Know [public tv program], Peace & Freedom Party, Speak Out, and the Green Party among others.
Members of the Oscar Grant Committee presented small bunch's of picket signs to the Grant and Jones family's that said "We Are Oscar Grant" and "Stop Police Brutality, Justice For Derrick Jones".
They were warmly and gratefully received.
The two dozen police squad cars and armored personnel carrier staged around the corner had no call to move against the peaceful action and even the gods seemed to be smiling on us, as the rain clouds broke apart and the sun came out just long enough to conclude the rally.
Unlike our previous 3 events which got drenched.
All in all , I'll call it a peoples victory and a great way to start the new year off, uniting the the people and fighting for justice.
I'm very proud of all the brave street solders that shook off their new years hangovers, disregarded the rain clouds, feared not the the shadowy police state presence and came out to stand up for justice on new years day.
Stop Police Terror
We Are Oscar Grant
We are Derrick Jones

2011-12-18 "Occupy meets Open Carry" by Jennifer Modenessi from "Contra Costa Times" newspaper:
Occupy protesters and open-carry advocates came together peacefully, and a little awkwardly, at a rally Saturday in Concord.
Around 35 to 40 protesters gathered at noon at Todos Santos Plaza to address issues such as government reform, cuts to education and the sagging U.S. postal system, as well as to hear a talk by guest speaker and anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan.
The mother of a fallen soldier railed against military spending and said people deserve meaningful jobs that "pay not a minimum wage, but a human wage."
They were joined by one open-carry advocate displaying an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle across his back and carrying two semi-automatic pistols, and another with a handgun.
"I wanted to be educated and learn the message," said Brad, a 29-year-old Antioch resident and open-carry supporter who declined to give his last name.
While several open-carry supporters attended a previous Occupy Concord march, organizer Frank Runninghorse said they did not contact Occupy Concord about their plans to attend this rally.
"We found out on their website," Runninghorse said.
And while the 57-year-old Concord resident said he understands that open-carry supporters are advocating for their Second Amendment rights, weapons are not welcome at Occupy Concord meetings and events.
Guns and other weapons play into the stereotype that the Occupy movement is "violent and scary," Runninghorse said.
Jeanette Flores, 52, said that although she understood what open-carry supporters were doing there, guns at the rally did not make her feel comfortable.
"What are you trying to show?" she asked rhetorically.
Her discomfort did not stop her or other Occupy protesters from engaging with the open-carry advocates, handing them signs to hold and talking about their differences -- and similarities.
Retired postal worker and guest speaker David Welsh said he did not even notice open carriers at the rally.
"This is a peaceful assembly," he said.

2011-12-18 "Message to the Concord Occupyistas" from "Occupy Concord" organizer FRH:
Thank you everybody who worked hard and came out to our 2nd successful Occupy Concord march and action. With 75-80 people, we had a smaller turnout than our last Occupy Concord action on Nov. 5. But we were holding the event on the last weekend before X-mass, which may have diminished our turnout. Other factors, such as DVC being in Finals last week, reduced the number of students involved. Union worker turnout also was less than before despite a organized effort to visit every Union office [15] in the area to encourage participation. There could be several reasons for this fall off of attendance from the unions. Several Union leaders who promised to come, didn't show and this may indicate that the Central Labor Council leadership is nervous about the Occupy Movement after the controversial West Coast Port Shutdown , which caused some friction between top Union officials and more action orientated rank & file worker and OWS forces. Never the less we had speakers and representatives from several Unions, including Dave Welsh, a Union Letter Carrier and member of the SF Central Labor Council, Stan Woods, a ILWU member and one of the organizers of the Dec 12 Port Action, as well as a sister from "Women of Steel" [United Steel Workers union]. The General Assembly clearly made common cause with the workers movement with several resolutions with unanimous support.
    We had a nice and more compact rally, featuring our special guest speaker, internationally renowned anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan who fired up and inspired the crowd. The one hour rally format worked well, not taxing the peoples patience or attention span. It was followed by a spirited march thru the streets of down town Concord.
   We had news coverage on channel 3 and a article in the CC times, which mostly focused on the two guys with guns from 'Open Carry", but what do we expect from the MSN {main stream news, owned by the 1%}. I thought we handled the situation with the 'Open Carry" right wingers very well, with our public statement, separating the two movements.
    The Grand Finally of the action was the Public General Assembly that was attended by nearly 40 people, at least half of which, it was their first. This was by far the largest Concord GA yet and perhaps the most productive. 5 resolutions/demands were passed with in 50 minutes in a democratic process with near unanimous results. We had established a compromise 70% voter threshold to pass motions for this GA. But there was little if any opposition to any of the 5 proposed motions.
   Motions/demands were passed [1] in support of the struggle of Postal workers to save 200,000 jobs and Sat. mail service and against 'privatization' of the Postal service. [2] Solidarity and support for UFCW grocery workers now engaged in contact negotiations with bosses attempting to reduce or eliminate health care benefits. [3] A call for a Moratorium on home foreclosures. [4] Adoption of Occupy Berkeley's resolution calling for action to roll back student fees and stop cuts to education. [5] A demand that 'health care is a human right' ,supporting a "single payer" medicare for all approach, to be financed by taxing the rich. {exact wording of these resolutions will be forth coming}
    Over all, despite a few snafus, we held a strong and successful action, ending the year 2012 with a show of strength and determination and laying the ground work for a even more successful and broader Occupy Concord Movement in the New Year.
    You are the leaders we have been looking for. You are my heroes.
[signd] FRH
    Occupy Concord
      Diablo Valley MDS [Movement 4 a Democratic Society]
      Diablo Valley College SDS  [Students 4 a Democratic Society ]
[additional to the 2011-12-18 "Message to the Concord Occupyistas" from FRH]
The POWER OF PROTEST is displayed in these pictures below which [except for one] came from the right wing "". This tiny article generated 60 comments in one day, many from Tea Bagger types bad mouthing us, but showing our impact and creating debate on our topic. Even in this conservative outfit many folks were defending and supporting us.
Occupyistas, we can also write in and join the debate on this thread. We can fill them in on what really happened that the "Claycord" didn't report on.
Occupy Concord makes a protest stop at Wells Fargo on the march:
The "Minister" makes the news: Occupy Concord protester C. Knight, of Concord, attends a rally held at Todos Santos Plaza in Concord, Calif., on Saturday, Dec. 17, 2011. During a march protesters stopped at the Bank of America, Wells Fargo Bank and the AT&T building for a short time to protest against the three companies. Between 75-80 people attended the occupy Concord rally. (Doug Duran/ Contra Costa Times)
Robin UPC, caught in the Spot Light in front of Peace & Freedom Party Contingent:

ROUSED RABBLE: Jarred, Nick, Dave Martinez (Robins Dad), Monica, Big Timmy

Cindy Sheehan, SPECIAL SPEAKER, brave truth teller:

Right wing Open Carry guy with guns 'monitoring" Occupy Concord:

Occupy Concord protesters were not intimidated and read off a prepared statement separating "Occupy Concord" from "Open Carry" for the latter's refusal to respect our tactics of no weapons at our events.
The "open carry" folks are conservative Republicans opposed to the OWS movement, who are there to protect 'small business' from imaginary danger from Occupy Concord protesters. There were no incidents, the Open Carry people were isolated and ignored. They didn't march with us and lost their rights to participate in the GA [General Assembly] by bringing Guns against our democratically decided policy.

Note from Northbay Uprising:
The "Open Carry activists" are actually real fascists (of the "American-Nationalist" variety) who are investigating all the people who participate with the Occupy Concord movement. They receive intel and open support by the local Fusion Center agents embedded in the local police, and work directly with "local merchants" to disrupt the movement by brandishing their weapons at children, their parents and other people participating at Occupy Concord. Their presence also serves to scare any onlookers into believing that Occupy Concord has become dangerously "Militant"! 
Despite the fact there has been NO DAMAGE done to any establishment within the area surrounding Occupy Concord, the "Open Carry activists" are charging the participants to being ready to "riot"!

2011-12-17 "Occupy Concord Rally/March 12/17/11" by Ed Rippy
Occupy Concord held a rally and march at Todos Santos Plaza Saturday afternoon, and about 70 people showed up.
 The march visited Bank of America, ATT and Wells Fargo offices near the plaza, denouncing each for acts of oppression and extortion. Concord Police blocked off one lane of the streets and escorted marchers on motorcycles.
 The march visited Bank of America, ATTT, and Wells Fargo offices near the plaza, denouncing each for acts of oppression and extortion. Video: 4:40

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 After the march the crowd held a General Assembly which passed resolutions opposing fee hikes at the University of California and supporting grocery workers and postal workers in their struggle against the 1%. It also passed resolutions supporting health care as a human right and calling for a moratorium on home foreclosures.
The General Assembly unanimously passed a resolution supporting the postal workers; Dave Welsh, a retired letter carrier, talked about the strike that gained US postal workers their collective bargaining rights and the current threats to those rights from privatization. Video: 6:06

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Margaret Coley, Recording Secretary and Women of Steel Co-ordinator of United Steelworkers came in solidarity from Occupy Vallejo. Video: 2:35 (camera by Sherill Borg).

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Cindy Sheehan, keynote speaker, blasted US militarism and said that she did not want her comfort and security at the expense of others' around the world. Here are video highlights (9:23). The 'waterfall' sound comes from a fountain offscreen.  Sheehan blasted US militarism and said that she did not want her comfort and security at the expense of others' around the world.

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2011-12-15 "Message to the Concord Occupyistas" from "Occupy Concord" organizer FRH:
Somehow the "Open Carry" people are under the FALSE impression that they are 'welcome" to bring guns to our events. Futher more upon examining their website they seem to be happy that the police are allowing them access to our events, overruling our concerns. They also seem pleased that they are, even if, "momentarily" stealing the spotlight. Their attitude is that they are "protecting small business" from rioting and social chaos, even tho in our statement we disavow violence and vandalism.
They see themselves as a auxiliary police force monitoring "Occupy Concord" on behalf of the business community. This maybe why they were seen, last time, driving off in a rent-a-cop security van.
This smells like classical fascism to me. I am suspicious.

2011-12-13 "Occupy Protest Long Gun Carry/ Concord" by Alany Helmatoler
Time: December 17, 2011 from 12pm to 1pm
Location: Todos Santos Plaza Concord
 Street: 2151 Salvio St
 City/Town: Concord, CA 94520
 Website or Map: []
Event Description:
Open Carry members are welcome to the Occupy protest in Concord on Saturday at 12pm.
Bring your long guns or what ever you wish. 
Apparently the last time we showed up to the occupy movement for a moment "took away" from the message of the occupy movement and the leaders of occupy asked Concord PD to ask us to leave. Well officers said sorry that is also free speech.  
Maybe Open Carry can show that we have the ability to protect ourselves and our community in case of riots. 
We do not need civil unrest conducted in our communities which hurts small business even though we encourage free speech. 

2011-12 "Message to the Concord Occupyistas" from "Occupy Concord" organizer FRH:
    Call me a "conspiracy nut", but after reading some of the 'Open Carry' website, I remain suspicious that they may be working with some arm of the FBI, COINTELPRO or other bureau of the national police state apparatus. They are openly hostile to the 'Occupy" movement and pro conservative Republican.
     While I support the 2nd amendment , it is clear that this group does not support the goals of the Occupy Wall Street movement and are NOT our friends. Their cosy relationship to the police is also troublesome. I wonder if the police would be so understanding if the black members of the Oscar Grant Committee or the Black Panther Alumni showed up with rifles. In the recent past Concord PD has arrested SDS members for "Cop-watching" in Todos Santos and attempted to stop us from passing out leaflets, of course we weren't right wingers carrying guns. Are left wing leaflets more of a threat than right wing guns? TO WHOM?
    Folks lets not be intimidated by this maneuver , lets stay strong and keep cool heads. Lets not be provoked or panicked.   Now more than ever the wisdom of our resolution is becoming more & more apparent. We need to let the media know whats going on. And let the 99%  know this "Open Carry " group is not with us.

2011-12-11 "Open Carry/Weapon Statement" Passed by the Occupy Concord, CA General Assembly by unanimous vote:
Occupy Concord, CA does not support, endorse or encourage violence nor  vandalism. We do not condone bringing weapons to our meetings or events.
Occupy Concord, CA requests that no weapons are brought to our meetings or events. Although many of our members support our 2nd Amendment right to bear  arms, we wish to create an atmosphere of cooperation and understanding for  those persons or groups who do not feel safe or comfortable in the presence  of weapons. Those who choose to not acquiesce to our request in regards to  weapons, separate themselves from Occupy Concord, CA and will lose voting  and speaking privileges at Occupy Concord, CA general assemblies or events.

2011-12-12 "We Luv the Postman [& Post Woman]"
 The OWS movement is about looking out for the 99% who are being constantly pushed down into poverty, unemployment and homelessness or workers being stripped of their, union rights to bargain  collectively or denied access to health and medical benefits as prices skyrocket.
The 99% which includes the hard working 'Salt of the earth' like our
postal workers and their unions are under attack by the politicians bought and paid for by the Wall Street bankers and the 1 %.
In a time of prolonged high unemployment and declining working class living standards. What we need are jobs ,with decent living wages, union jobs with dignity and benefits.We need more jobs not massive layoffs, and privatization of vital services to create more profits for the 1 %.
The Post Office is the largest employer of black workers and workers of color in the nation. It is a union job with benefits. It has been a place  where historically many people including people of color could get steady job and a modest of slice of the so called "American Dream".
Instead of creating more jobs, the Government is trying to fire 200,000 postal workers and eliminate Saturday Mail delivery & close down over 2000 post offices. They claim that the workers must sacrifice
again because of bogus laws passed by the Bush administration that require the Post Office,[ which is self financing, uses no tax money]to pay down on retirement benifits 75 years into the future for postal workers not even born yet. No other industry or company's must adhere to such  restrictive financal obligations at the expense of their jobs.These rules are part of a sceme to "privatize" the Post  Office by forces of the 1 %.
That OCCUPY Concord  Demands that our public post offices be defended.
We demand the retention of Saturday Mail Service and the Jobs of 200,000 Postal Workers. We demand that union contracts negotiated in good faith, that protect Postal Jobs, be honored by the politicians. We oppose the privatization of the post office. We call for other workers, unions, students, community members and folks of the 99% to stand with our brothers and sisters of the postal service. We insist our public officials protect them and not attack them, or they will answer to the 99%. We stand ready to show solidarity and LUV to the POSTMAN .
An Injury Is , Is An Injury to All

2011-11-20 "Mellower Occupy movement grows in the suburbs" by Kevin Fagan from "San Francisco Chronicle"
Gerri Field stood with hundreds of protesters in front of Tiffany's in Walnut Creek this week, railing against economic injustice at the top of her lungs and drawing approving honks from passing cars with her sign, "Heal America, Tax Wall Street."
For two sunny midday hours, the crowd did its best to "occupy" the busiest intersection in town, Mount Diablo Boulevard and North Main Street, singing "This Land Is Your Land" and denouncing corporate greed and the ultrarich 1 percent.
Then it was time for lunch. Time to put the signs away.
No thrown bottles at police. No tear gas or cops in sight. And certainly no tents.
"Camping? My idea of camping is a room in the Hyatt," said Field, a 50-year-old schoolteacher. "That's not what my protest is about."
In the suburbs, the Occupy movement has a whole different flavor.
And there is, unbeknownst to many, a lot of occupying being done beyond big city borders. At least 30 Occupy movements exist from Santa Cruz north through Alameda and Concord to Vacaville, Napa and Santa Rosa.
The message is the same as in the big cities. But most of those movements, with a few notable exceptions such as Santa Cruz and Santa Rosa, don't involve tents, and even there the method is mellower - more upscale, less rageful, cleaner.

Different vibes-
Unlike the Occupy camps in San Francisco, Oakland and Berkeley, homeless people and clashes with police have not dominated the imagery.
"A tent city in a place like this would alienate too many people," psychologist Jane Vinson, 77, said at the Thursday demonstration in Walnut Creek, which drew about 300 people and was purposefully situated near a Bank of America branch.
"Our culture does include Neiman Marcus as well as the Apple store, and a tent city would just attract angry people who would muddy our message."
In other words, anarchists who like to toss rocks and the chronically homeless are welcome only if they want to pitch in without mess or conflict.
That stands in contrast to what has happened in the bigger cities.
[ ... ]
Occupy Walnut Creek protesters rally outside Tiffany's at the intersection of Mount Diablo Boulevard and North Main Street. Credit: Photos by Michael Macor / The Chronicle:

2011-11-17 "Occupy Martinez Report" by "Occupy Concord" organizer FRH:
Martinez, 10 miles NW of Concord is a small working class town of 40,000, ringed by oil refinery's and also the Contra Costa county seat. It has many Union HQ's in town including the big UFCW [grocery workers] hall on Alhambra Ave, across from the Post Office, which is where the "Occupy Martinez" street protest took place today.
The working class makeup of the town explains the the tremendous cacophony of motorist honking support for the 'Occupiers' which was nearly continuous. Many union workers in their union jackets were
present among the 100 protesters. AFL-CIO Central Labor Council
President John May who spoke at our Occupy Concord action 11/5 ,was there as were several union workers I recognized from  Occupy Concord and Occupy Richmond actions. Sheryl Grover a AFSCME and MoveOn organizer was there with a bullhorn. I spoke with both John May and Sheryl.

5 of us from Occupy Concord attended to show show solidarity with Occupy Martinez.
Gary, Frank and Ambika from Diablo Valley Movement for a Democratic Society [MDS] and Robin UPC and Clearwater Russ also from Occupy Concord. We received a very warm and loud welcome from the Occupy Martinez crowd ,many of whom had heard impressive things about Occupy Concord.
The action was called for 4:30 -6pm and peaked about 5:15, after that it started getting dark and picket signs became difficult to read, people started to fade away.

When we got their 10 minutes early, there was already 40-50 people there with homemade hand written signs and a couple of cops who had caused a commotion by first telling protesters they had to be on union property and off the side walk. Then they told them they had to keep moving like a picket line and they couldn't stop. I immediately and loudly challenged this as BS and began chanting, "whose sidewalks, our side walks", most of the protesters quickly agreed and began to defy the two cops who faded away into the back ground. We had brought about 60 MDS/SDS [Students for a Democratic Society - Diablo Valley Chapter] picket signs with us and after the act of resistance to police false instructions, a group of 8-10 highschool students rushed in and grabbed our picket signs, soon many folks had exchanged signs and nearly all our 60 signs were being waved on both sides of the street.

We also met Martinez Robin who had organized a recent Occupy action on Pacheco Blvd in front of the big refinery. She was there with her baby in her arms and her mother and father. She was very excited to meet Occupy Concord people and was thrilled to have two way solidarity flowing. Latter when Robin UPC showed up after work, I introduced the two  spunky Robins and they seemed to hit it off. Martinez Robin and her parents said they would be coming to the Occupy Concord General Assembly on Sunday.

Frank made sure that every Occupy Martinez protester got a Occupy Concord leaflet and were made aware of our Sunday morning Occupy Concord General Assembly. Many expressed interest in coming. The crowd was also leafleted with MDS/SDS lit as well and these were the only two leaflets we saw.
A smaller group around 6pm encouraged folks to go down to city hall and carry on the action. But it was dark and most folks went home for dinner was my impression. At least that's what we did.
It was a successful action with tremendous honking support and a strong sense of mutual solidarity was developed between Occupy Concord and Occupy Martinez movements.

2011-11-15 "Attacks on OWS Were Coordinated Across the US" communique from "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS" organizer FRH:
Article on Firedoglake about how the various attacks were actually coordinated: []
Great information, verifying my suspicions of coordinated 1% strategy's against OWS.
18 city Conference call planning coordinated attacks.
Wonder where Concord & Diablo Valley College [DVC] fit in.
I wouldn't be surprised if "Homeland Security" [DHS] and a new COINTELPRO were involved, in fact I'd be shocked if they weren't.
Diablo Valley College (DVC) Dean Oye suddenly launches a attack on DVC SDS for meeting peacefully in a empty class room, as he knows we have been doing all semester, one week after successful Nov 5 "Occupy Concord" action & the Nov 9, DVC SDS cosponsored, public speakout on the "Crimes of the CIA" to a "no standing room" house of 110, which he dropped by to peek in on.
I also wouldn't be surprised if Oye is working with the DHS & FBI to target SDS just like back in the 60's. We are peacefully using our 1st Amendment rights, any attack on us will not be legal or popular with the 99%. It will only add fuel to our fire.

2011-11-15 "OCCUPY CONCORD WEBSITE ANNOUNCEMENT" message from "Diablo Valley Movement & Students 4 a Democratic Society [MDS/SDS]

Social Justice Warriors,
Despite recent repressive assaults on the OWS [Occupy Wall Street] camps across the nation, by the 1%, the movement for social justice and against the crimes of corporate capitalism is rapidly growing.
In the Diablo Valley, "Occupy Concord" is following up on a very successful rally, march & street theater on Nov 5, and continues to have weekly Sunday Mornings 10am -12 noon GA's [General Assembles] in downtown Todos Santos Plaza.
Meetings, averaging 20+, are planning and organizing more actions, activities, marches, educational movies, outreach to oppressed community's and organized labor and coordination with DVC student activists, including SDS and Solidarity with other Occupy movements, not only in the SF, Oakland, Berkeley bubble, but also the newer and less publicized 'Occupys' in Richmond, Martinez, Walnut Creek, Napa & others.
New activists have stepped up to build this movement. A wonderful "Occupy Concord " website and information listserve has been created to serve this growing movement. Please check it out, use it, write for it and BOOKMARK it on your computer. It is a valuable resource for the 99% !
OCCUPY CONCORD ACTION NOV. 5, 2011 (Photo taken by Adalto Nascimento from "Walnut Creek Patch")

The Spirit of Occupy is spreading fast, is pluri-national, and has participation by Students, Workers, Lumpen, and oppressed nations!!! [note from Dr.G.: Unless the email address is already publicly available by the holder, all names and email addresses are have been expunged]
2011-11-15 “Letter From OCCUPY CCC Students” to “Occupy Concord”:
Hello, I met you guys at the Gang Injunction rally through Jose. I was there with my twin sister and my friend Angie. Anyway, I'm the Vice President of the La Raza Student Union at CCC (Contra Costa College). We are trying to organize an Occupy event at CCC, nothing confrontational but something to educate the students about the local Occupy movements and what they are about. Unfortunately we can't afford to pay anyone but we will have food and refreshments. Please message me if you are interested or know anyone who is. This is a great opportunity to educate students who are interested in the movement but are maybe are a bit ignorant about its goals and so are hesitant to support it. Have a great day! Best Regards,
[signed] I. 
2011-11-15 “RE: Letter From OCCUPY CCC Students” message from "Occupy Concord" organizer FRH to “OCCUPY CCC”:  Sister I., We will send your message to our contacts at CCC and Occupy Richmond. I will also CC their addresses to you. Good luck with your event. Please keep us informed about the date, time & place.  Maybe we could send some folks over to your action and bring some picket signs. Maybe we could schedule a picket sign making party as we have lots of slogan stencils. Keep up the good work! We Are The 99%!
[signed] FRH, Occupy Concord, Diablo Valley SDS/MDS, Oscar Grant Committee 
2011-11-16 “RE: Letter From OCCUPY CCC Students” message from “Occupy Richmond” organizer Jose R. to “OCCUPY CCC”:
Hello this is Jose from the Occupy Richmond Movement and I got a Message from La Raza Student Union at CCC and I told them would be great to have a Occupy CCC public speak out rally co-sponsored by Occupy Richmond. This would give students a great way to get involved and to speak out about the problems facing the College and Financial aid and many other issues. What do you think about the idea?
[signed] Jose R., Occupy Richmond. 
2011-11-16 “RE: Letter From OCCUPY CCC Students” message from “Black Women Organized for Political Action” to “OCCUPY CCC”:
Please keep me informed about future meeting and events.  I also would love to come to a sign making activity and bring some of our Youth Action (YAC) Committee members.
[signed] Kathleen Sullivan, President, Black Women Organized for Political Action 
2011-11-16 “RE: Letter From OCCUPY CCC Students” message from “United Native Americans, inc.” to “OCCUPY CCC”:
Let Me Know How UNA Can Help. 
[signed] Quanah Brightman [] []

"Report on OCCUPY RICHMOND 11/11/11" from "Diablo Valley Students/Movement for a Democratic Society [SDS/MDS]":
110 diverse people came out for the 2nd Occupy Richmond event in the rain.
Regional MDS/SDS had 9 members attend, 3 each from Diablo Valley, North Bay & West County chapters.
Every protester received MDS literature, many took SDS/MDS 'Memes guns' [picket signs].
Mary M., Tarnel A. & "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS" organizer FRH all spoke during speak out.
FRH thanked Occupy Richmond for solidarity to Occupy Concord and returned it.
Jose R., part time CCC student and friend to DVC SDS, is a leading organizer of Occupy Richmond Movement and a member of the Richmond Progressive Alliance, he was one of the main MC's of 11/11/11 action.
There was some kind of follow up action the next day.
Photographs showing 2011-11-11 "Occupy Richmond Action":
This brother stole Geralds red hat. [LOL] (Ol'G BPP humor, yo!)

Green Party Mayor Gail McLaughlin of Richmond, & old school Chicano Activist, Andres Soto.

2011-11-11 "Occupy Richmond gains momentum" by Alexis Kenyon from "Richmond Confidential"
More than 90 protesters gathered at the steps of Richmond’s Memorial Auditorium today in support of Occupy Wall Street.  Under cloudy skies, protesters spoke out against wealth inequality, big banks, corporate greed and Richmond’s own “1%”: Chevron Corp.
City Councilmember Jeff Ritterman voiced his disapproval of Chevron’s recent property tax appeal, which would refund $150 million dollars to the multinational company.
“If Chevron gets $150 million … their shareholders get in line for another yacht … If Richmond has  $150 million the library stays open,” Ritterman said.
Along with Ritterman, Mayor Gayle McLaughlin and Councilmember Jovanka Beckles attended the rally.  McLaughlin said that Councilmember Tom Butt also supported the movement.
At the council meeting Tuesday, McLaughlin, Ritterman and Butt will propose a resolution requesting that Chevron withdraw its appeal to get a refund on its property taxes. Also on Tuesday,  the council will discuss withdrawing the city’s money from Wells Fargo – a bank that Ritterman said dodged its income tax the past 3 years.
Mayor McLaughlin responded to criticism over her decision to attend Occupy instead of the Red Oak Victory Veterans Day event. She said she found it unfortunate that recent news media coverage pit the two events against one another.
“We clearly stand for veterans,” she said. “They are part of the event. Many are homeless, unemployed or suffering from mental illness. Today I stand with them as well as many people who are struggling in these times.”
Dennis Dalton, a veteran Teamster, Marine and a longtime Richmond resident said he admired McLaughlin and the other members of City Council for supporting the Occupy movement.
“It is rare for a city in California to have elected officials stand up for their views and stand up for their people,” Dalton said.
He said he wished more political leaders, like Congressman George Miller (D-Martinez), would listen to the movement.
As Dalton spoke the people chanted,  “We are the people, right?
 “Are corporations people?”
The group will reconvene Saturday at 1 p.m. They plan to occupy Bank of America in protest of the bank’s recent foreclosure on a Richmond family’s home.


2011-11-07 "Liberals Attack Radicals & Diablo Valley MDS/SDS after badly losing in Attempted Purge in "Contra Costa 99%" by "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS" organizer FRH:
The Article below [2011-11-06 "A Coup: Occupy Contra Costa Has Split" by "sputnik99"] was written by liberal lawyer Michael Veiluva AKA "Sputnik99" after he lost the debate and could get only 3 out of 24 votes in his attempt to purge FRH.
Originally he planned to use the fact that SDS/MDS [Students & Movement for a Democratic Society] are not ideologically "pacifists" to imply that they are "violent" and harmful to the OWS movement, even tho SDS/MDS has never committed or advocated for violence in any of our actions.
But after a internet debate on the topic that went badly for them, they shifted gears to the bogus 'Sex Offender' issue which they believed they could get better traction on. When they lost the vote, they asked if the majority would put forward a motion to expel themselves (Michael Veiluva and his allies).
We refused to play into their persecution complex and expel them, so they split and walked away. The Majority which was less than 1/2  MDS/SDS went on with our meeting and made plans to further organize the 99% and build the movement.

2011-11-06 "A Coup: Occupy Contra Costa Has Split" by "sputnik99"
Occupy Contra Costa 99%, the #Occupy group formed in early October by six folks founded on consensus and nonviolence, is no more.  In its place is group calling itself Occupy Contra Costa, which is as of today a wholly-owned project of a “left” sectarian organization calling itself SDS/MDS.  
The “coup” occurred at Sunday’s meeting, when, at a meeting packed with SDS and fellow-travelers, most of the original founders of OCC99 decided they no longer wanted to be a “project” of an organization which does not follow consensus principles and refuses to adhere to nonviolence guidelines.
We  – who gladly left the brownshirt organization that OCC99 had become, complete with shout-downs and baiting – are looking forward to a positive time of education, reflection and reorganization, free of the pernicious influence to which OCC99 had succumbed.  We have a lot of work, but we are liberated.
The takeover of OCC99 was engineered by one [FRH].  
A simple Google search under the latter’s name will reveal the history of other organizations – the Peace and Freedom Party and the original SDS at Diablo Valley College – that [FRH] had infiltrated and ultimately torn apart.  It has to be experienced to be believed. But many others can tell the same story.
[FRH] would have felt right at home in Ernst Roehm’s SA in Nazi Germany, a combination of cajoling and threats, the enemy of consensus and nonviolence.  We who left were not prepared to brand all police as an enemy to be cursed, nor impose some incoherent and unschooled brand of “socialism” on anyone else.  As far as we could determined, apart from a cart full of a tatty collection of stenciled signs, there was no “there” there to [FRH]’s prescription for our social ills, apart from a false dualism of “us” vs. “them.” Always “them.” This dualism is the antithesis of the #Occupy movement.
Like Roehm, the pathology is accompanied by the personal.  Not disclosed until Sunday’s meeting was his arrest for an assault on a fellow activist in 2010 at the Diablo Valley College campus [] [Note: the incident is suspect, but reflective of a situation which was instigated by an alleged snitch].  His stance is aggressive, his language designed to alternatively seduce or intimidate.  Yet he was surprisingly open as to his aims. In his own words: “MDS/SDS has been penetrating and radicalizng these actions, in CCC, they are a great opportunity, but only if we understand what they are and how best to intersect and influence them (sic)".
Indeed. He “penetrated” OCC99. There is probably a better term.  R-A-P-E. Under no circumstances did we feel comfortable inviting people to such a group.
So we are off to form our new Occupy group, and the better for it.  No longer do we have to waste our energy and breath to justify nonviolence or justify consensus, which both Occupy Wall Street and Occupy Oakland honor and adhere to.  No longer do we have to subject ourselves to the bullying, or withstand the incessant ad hominum attacks from Mr. Orcutt.   We are free.  We are liberated human beings, spiritual and aware, and always beginners in this complicated journey that is #Occupy.
We’ll figure out a new name, and identity.  We have the website, the feeds, and can soldier on.  And all the better for all of it.  In a couple of weeks, we will emerge, and you can join us.
Long live the struggle, Occupy Oakland, and #OWS!
2011-11-07 public message from Larry Pinkney, Editorial Board Member & Columnist at The Black Commentator to Michael Veiluva:
Your own "aggressive stance," spurious statements and apparent affinity for the police (who are in fact the systemic guardians of and for the "1%"), combined with your use of COINTELPRO-type discrediting tactics (as demonstrated in your insidious and unnecessary piece titled, "A Coup: Occupy Contra Costa Has Split") in order to sow seeds of division and distrust; seem to indicate that it is you who might be an agent and/or agent-provocateur.

 2011-11-07 "OCCUPY CONCORD ACTION REPORT" from "Diablo Valley Movement & Students 4 a Democratic Society [MDS/SDS]":
Diablo Valley College SDS Meets Every Thursday, 12:30-1:45pm, room LA 107- Join Us!
Diablo Valley MDS/SDS worked with others in the Contra Costa 99% (mostly Joe the Painter & Robin UPC & her mom) to build a very successful 1st Action for "Occupy Concord" on Sat Nov 5. Close to 200 people participated, the CC Times (local establishment newspaper) reported 300.
Many Union members spoke or were present, including John May President of the CC Central Labor Council. Other Unions present in the shirts & jackets were the Steel Workers, Iron Workers, IBEW (electrical Workers) SEIU (Service Workers), Teamsters, CSEA (educational workers), Teachers and Plumbers & Steamfitters in small groups or individuals. Our Philosophy is that the organized working
class is the 'Back bone of the 99%' and we seek to promote Unionism.
The Oscar Grant Committee also had a strong showing with Gerald, Sharena, Danny Garcia & Denika Chatman (cop slain Ken Harding's Mom) all speaking and marching (and of course after partying).
A good amount of DVC students and Concord community residents came out and spoke, recited poetry [Abdul Hakim, DVC Muslim Students] or sang and played songs they wrote for the OWS movement. Occupy Richmond sent a speaker. Robin UPC & Ambika [Diablo Valley MDS] MC'ed the event with finesse, with Wes, C. Knight & Aidan (Diablo Valley MDS/SDS, Ministers of Counter Culture) providing interludes of radical music and street theater between speakers.
After a loud and spirited march for about a mile of over a 100 people, 3 banks were picketed, B of A, Wells Fargo & Chase. Several were wrapped up in crime scene tape latter on.
4 guys with guns showed up from supposedly the "open carry" 2nd Amendment movement. Nobody knew them, tho many of us support the 2nd Amendment, their presence caused concern from several union brothers and some of the black folks present, even tho the Gunmen claimed they weren't racist and they were from "Occupy Sacramento". We are suspicious. One of the Union brothers (blue cap, yellow sign) followed the gunmen when they left early and saw them all get into a Rent -a-Cop private security van.
This increases our suspicions that they could have been plants to make "Occupy Concord" seem dangerous, violent and scary to the 99% who we want to organize. In another news article they gave a different story about just passing thru town when they heard about the protest. Something is fishy here. The next day the Conservative 'Claycord" news website had dozens of comments about "Occupy Concord" being a bunch of "lazy students and hippies with guns', violent & crazy. A perfect smear campaign.
Members of "Nor-Cal Open Carry" showed up with their unloaded weapons at the Occupy Concord rally in Todos Santos Plaza Saturday afternoon. A member of the group who did not want to be identified said they were at a meeting in Pleasant Hill when they heard about the protest and decided to "check it out."
(Photograph by Adalto Nascimento from "Walnut Creek Patch")

Jeff Allen, of Concord, approached members of "Nor-Cal Open Carry" to voice a concern, despite agreeing with the group's Second Amendment Rights: "... I approached the armed guys over there to ask them to let people know their weapons are not loaded - I just wanted them to understand I agree with their Second Amendment rights, but maybe this isn't the right place to show up armed," said Allen.
(Photograph by Adalto Nascimento from "Walnut Creek Patch")

DVC SDS 1st Minister of Counter Culture [C. Knight] makes "Citizens Arrest" of "Fat Cat" [Diablo Valley MDS Minister of Counter Culture Wes N.] at the end of "Occupy Concord" protest. (Photograph by Adalto Nascimento from "Walnut Creek Patch")

FRH rallies up the "Occupiers" getting ready to march

Gary H, (Frank Little Club) & Robin UPC lead marchers into the street!
"Walnut Creek Patch" photo caption: Diablo Valley College members of Students for a Democratic Society and other Occupy Concord protesters cross the intersection of Galindo and Laguna Streets near the downtown Concord BART station. (Photograph by Adalto Nascimento from "Walnut Creek Patch")

Participant's of Saturday's Occupy Concord march and rally make their way past the Bank of America branch on Willow Pass Road. (Photograph by Adalto Nascimento from "Walnut Creek Patch")

2011-11-05 article by Juan from "Kasema Report":
Miles Ahead wrote: “I ran into some people from the Contra Costa 99%, who “just had to be in Oakland” yesterday…and they have organized a General Assembly in Concord for this weekend…Yikes, Concord!”
I’ve just returned home from that Occupy rally in downtown Concord, CA.
Concord is a city of around 120,000 in central Contra Costa County, just over the hills to the east of SF Bay, about 20 miles NE of Oakland. It is about 60% white, 25% Latino, 4% African-American, and 12% Asian -Filipino, Vietnamese, Chinese, etc. Until a few decades ago it was somewhat agricultural, and heavily blue-collar with people working in the chemical and petroleum plants lining the norther part of the SF Bay and the Carquinez Strait. Later it became somewhat of a bedroom community for Bay Area proper, with people commuting to the East Bay and to San Francisco, or taking the electric trains of the Bay Area Rapid Transit system. Until the 1990s Concord was, literally, the end of the line when it came to BART.
The rally kicked off at noon in Todos Santos Plaza, and was on the smallish side – at 12:45 I counted 170 people, with more coming in sporadically one by one, or in pairs. At no time, that I saw, did the crowd pass the 200 mark.
Organizers were, quite evidently, making it up on the fly, but it turned out pretty well for an event with less than a week of publicity (Until Tuesday or Wed. the didn’t even have the time of the event listed) and was competing for attendance with a better-publicized rally in nearby Walnut Creek. I suspect, from the crowd interactions,that many had heard of it word-of-mouth from other already-politically aware people. There was to have been a march, but by the time I left -two hours into the rally- there didn’t seem to be any movement in that direction, and the open mike was kept pretty busy with speakers from the crowd.
The impetus behind the rally was quite clearly provided by the Diablo Valley College chapter of the Movement for a Democratic Society, the DVC SDS or “Frank Little Club.” They had signs pre-made, a lit table, and were MC’ing the rally.
Also spotted were flyers for Peace and Freedom Party. Speakers included a guy from an outfit called Clear Water Vision; one from the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (which I overheard, is largely staffed by people formerly with ACORN); Justice for Oscar Grant; several union members speaking in their own name; DVC students; and others sharing their own stories and experiences with the banks, etc.
The event was largely middle- and college-aged, mostly white, with a smattering of black faces. Clearly no outreach was done to the third of the city’s population that is Latino.
[Meetings of Contra Costa 99% happen at the Panama Red's coffee shop facing Todos Santos Plaza, in downtown Concord, at 10 am on Sundays. More at ]

2011-11-06 "Photos: Concord's First Occupy Rally, March; Protesters took to Todos Santos Plaza and Concord streets to denounce big banks, among other issues" by Adalto Nascimento from "Walnut Creek Patch"
Close to 100 demonstrators assembled at Todos Santos Plaza and marched through downtown Concord Saturday afternoon to protest big banks and corporations.Speeches and performances were given at the rally starting at noon and around 2 p.m. Demonstrators were escorted by Concord police as they marched down Willow Pass Road, before taking Fry Way to Concord Boulevard and heading towards the downtown BART station.
Waving their signs, chanting and encouraging those stuck in traffic to honk their horns, protesters then headed back to Todos Santos Plaza, where pit-stop demonstrations were briefly held at the adjacent Wells Fargo, Bank of America and Chase Bank branches.

Why Concord?
"Concord is really the geographical center of the county," said  a member of Occupy Contra Costa 99% - the group responsible for organizing Saturday's rally and march. "I think you have more of a solid middle class as opposed to Lafayette or Danville."
Concord, is more representative of the working class and the 99 percent of the national population, as opposed to cities such as Walnut Creek, Lafayette and Danville — where OCC 99% and other organizations continue to hold demonstrations.
The group is based out of Concord where members meet at Todos Santos Plaza Sunday mornings to organize, discuss and plan protests around the county and to coordinate assistance for major Occupy protests — such as Oakland Occupy.
Despite the regular meetings out of Concord, Saturday's protest was the first of its kind in this city.

Reaction -
"I came here because it's important people realize one percent has it all," said Susan Ruano, of Concord, shortly after trying to convince customers using Bank of America ATM machines to switch to a credit union. "We're going towards becoming a third world country."
Though opponents of the Occupy movement or Saturday's rally couldn't be found, some expressed concern and criticism: "A lot of people are here for the wrong reasons," said Kenny C, of Concord, in our live interview. " ... some people are here but they don't know what they're fighting for."
Kenny, who did not want to disclose his last name, pointed out that many of the speeches during the rally lacked focus and weren't necessarily about Occupy-related topics, instead, focusing on issues of police brutality and unions.
The march ended back at the plaza with a staged citizens arrest of man dressed in a "fat-cat Wall Street executive" suit. He then set up crime scene yellow tape in front of the Wells Fargo, Bank of America and Chase banking branches adjacent to the plaza.
Contra Costa 99% plans to carry on with the Sunday meetings in front of Panama Red's Coffee Shop.
"I think it's important for people to understand this is an evolutionary process," said Veiluva.

Corner of Willow Pass Rd & Grant St [3 blocks from Concord BART]
For Info [925-798-3698] or [925-435-9906], or Robin L. Powers [] [805-696-3323]
Live Music, Speakers, Poets, Street Theater, Vox populai Noisy March, Crime Scene the Banksters, Citizens Arrest of FAT CAT

2011-10-30 "OCCUPY Concord, A Mother's Cry for Justice!" announcement for "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS" public meeting:
Diablo Valley MDS -Monthly Meeting, SUN. OCT 30, NOON-2PM! NOTICE: CHANGE OF VENUE & TIME - DIABLO VALLEY MDS MEETING WILL BE HELD IN CONCORDS TODOS SANTOS PLAZA [near band stand] [same place as & after 10am 'Contra Costa 99%' meeting]

Octobers Monthly DIABLO VALLEY MDS meeting, this Sunday Oct.30, has shifted TIME & PLACE so as NOT to be in conflict with with the weekly "Contra Costa 99%" meeting , which is also on Sunday @10-12 am.  We have moved our meeting back one hour to Noon and shifted the location to TODOS SANTOS PLAZA [behind bandstand, across from Panama Bay,3 blocks from Concord Bart] which is where CC99% meeting is also . This will make it easier for our members and friends to come to both meeting. We will also try to shorten the MDS meeting to a hour &1/2 so as not to burn folks out with double meetings.
The last chance to meet & get organized and prepared for the BIG DEBUT of "OCCUPY CONCORD" Action on Nov 5 @ Noon in Todos Santos.
We need ALL MDS/SDS members who can possibly make it to come out. We have one week to ORGANIZE for OCCUPY CONCORD, we need all warriors on the front lines!
SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKER @ DIABLO VALLEY MDS MEETING: Denika Chatman from Antioch, Mother of Ken Harding, the young black man shot multiple times and killed by the SFPD for not paying a $2 muni transfer, will speak to us about the murder of her son and the struggle for justice against police brutality and what we can do to help.
Proposed "Diablo Valley MDS" Agenda
[1] Oscar Grant Committee Report:
    (A) Oct 22 -"No More Stolen Lives" Action in SF Bayview
            -Free Fly Benzo, political prisoner
    (B) Oscar Grant Committee speakout @ Oakland OWS Sat night
    (C) Oscar Grant Committee's next meeting Nov 2
    (D) Justice for Derrick Jones (RIP), Nov 8
[2] Denika Chatman Speaks -A MOTHER CRYS FOR JUSTICE
[3] DVC SDS Report - Forum on CIA Crimes
     (A) Lessons of the "Battle of Oakland" & Nov 2 'GENERAL STRIKE
     (B) MDS/SDS & CC99% in the "Creek" actions
     (C) Activist Democracy Vs "Consensus"
     (D) brief reports from Napa ,Richmond,SF, SJ & Berkeley
     (A) Review of previous CC99% meeting
     (B) Out reach to students, Unions & Community's of Color & media     
     (C) March & logistics
     (D) suggestions for speakers & entertainment
      (E) MDS/SDS preparations, "Memes Guns", Banners. Leaflets assignments, chants
[6] Other Exciting Stuff

2011-10-29 "Oscar Grant Committee re-occupies Oscar Grant Plaza!!!" Action Report and Meeting Alert from "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS":
November OSCAR GRANT COMMITTEE General Meeting
Tues Nov. 1 , 7-9 PM
Neibyl-Proctor Library, 6501 Telegraph Ave
north Oakland [near Alcatraz ]
The "Oscar Grant Committee, Against Police Brutality & State Repression (OGC)" held a dynamic 2 hour  "Speakout" Sat. evening "Against Police Brutality" at Oscar Grant Plaza in "Re Occupied Oakland", after the brutal police riot in the encampment a few days earlier.
Over 1000 people enthusiastically participated and a spontaneous night time march of 400 took place after-wards. Previous night time Oscar Grant marches have led to bogus mass arrests, but this time despite a little street dancing with the cops there was no violence or arrests.
Indeed 'The whole World is Watching".
Most leading Oscar Grant Committee activists spoke at the "Speakout", including Uncle Bobby and Denika Chatman, (cop-slain Ken Harding's mother) and recently bailed out Fly Benzo (persecuted Bay View black 'cop watcher').
Oscar Grant Committee speakers repeatedly called on people to attend Tues Nov 1, Oscar Grant Committee meeting & the Protest Vigil  for police slain Derrick Jones on Nov 8  in East Oakland.
[signed] FRH, community organizer for "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS" and "Oscar Grant Committee"
P.S.: Check it out, look closely below and you will see some of the dozens of MDS/SDS/OGC picket signs carried on the march!
[Note from Dr.G.: "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS" and "OGC" picket-signs have the red fist, which are produced through the efforts of FRH, who is an organizer for both organizations]

2011-10-27 "OCCUPY THE CREEK #3: Action Report on OCCUPY WALNUT CREEK BART 10/26/11" by "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS" organizer FRH:
Diablo Valley SDS/MDS mobilized over a dozen supporters to intersect the 3rd "Occupy Walnut Creek" Action of about 230 people on the busiest intersection in the "Creek".
Once again our picket signs were very popular and DVC SDS students proudly waved their banner from corner to corner.
We joined with other members of the newly formed "Contra Costa 99%" [CC99%] to pass out leaflets  to the crowd calling the 99% to "OCCUPY CONCORD" on Sat. Nov 5 @ NOON in Todos Santos Plaza.
The flyer also called people out to CC99%'s  General Meeting on Sunday 10-12 AM, in Todos Santos right before the Diablo Valley MDS meeting in the same location at 12 Noon.
Perhaps the highlite of the action was the feeder march by 25 CNA Union nurses from Kaiser dressed in red.
The next day SDS passed out 800 more "Occupy Concord " leaflets at DVC , more mass fliering is planned at DVC next week.
SDS plans to ask the DVC Instructors Union, 'United Faculty" and the Classified Staff, 'Local One" to join in "Occupy Concord".
We also plan to invite both the militant CNA Nurses and the Diablo area Postal Union activists we met last month in the National Day of Action against austerity attacks on the Union.

All photographs from [] and all captions except for the first one are by FRH:
About 25 Union Nurses from Kaiser hospital held a feeder march into the "Occupy Walnut Creek " action. They wore red and spoke of their struggle at Kaiser to prevent managements  cost cutting attacks on patients care and over working of nurses. MDS led solidarity cheers for the nurses.

Union Nurses & Diablo Valley MDS/SDS "Occupy Together" in the "Creek"

"1st Amendment" sign.
FRH assembles 40 MDS/SDS "Memes Guns" [picket signs] on the spot, to pass out to the social justice warriors.

Wes, Diablo Valley MDS "Minister of Counter Culture", uses Newspaper headlines of Police Violence against "Occupy Oakland" camp to make point on police brutality.

"Robin Hood was right", an old Frank Little Club classic, back by popular demand.

2011-10-26 "A Different Occupy Scene in Walnut Creek; Peaceful demonstration plays out on Ygnacio Valley Road by the BART station" by Lance Howland from "Walnut Creek Patch" online journal
A day later and a dozen miles to the east, the scene was quite different.
A day after Oakland erupted in confrontation between protesters and police, a group of more than 200 staged their demonstration peacefully on a busy suburban road in Walnut Creek. Officers in a couple of police cruisers watched quietly from the back lot of a Shell station across Ygnacio Valley Road.
No tear gas was deployed. No encampment on public land was targeted for breakup. 
Carl Anderson of Oakland came to Walnut Creek Wednesday to carry a sign quoting the First Amendment, the right "peaceably to assemble."
Anderson said he wasn't with Occupy Oakland colleagues Tuesday when police in riot gear tried to clear the city park, but he was "shocked" by Oakland police tactics. He said he participated in an Oakland march Saturday and was struck by the police restraint. Anderson said he went to 14th and Broadway in Oakland at 8 a.m. Wednesday and did yoga with some of the Occupy Oakland campers. In the afternoon he came to Walnut Creek to "support the good stuff happening east of the hills." []
Occupy Walnut Creek, on its third Wednesday, has been growing — not in numbers so much, but with more organizations involved and more participants coming from distant cities []. A group of more than a dozen red-shirted union nurses joined the demonstration to ask for others' support in pressing the Kaiser administration not to reduce Registered Nurse positions at Kaiser Walnut Creek.
"We're here for our patients and to fight cutbacks," said nurse Natalia Starodynov.
At 4:45 p.m. Wednesday, some 230 protesters made their point at Ygnacio Valley Road and North California Boulevard. Most were gathered at the corner of the Walnut Creek BART station parking lot. The numbers were similar to protests the last two Wednesdays on Mount Diablo Boulevard in a heavily travelled shopping area.
By the BART station Wednesday, a sampling of the signs:
* Robber barons redux
* Stop deceptive political ads
* Wall Street $ out of Congress and White House
* America not for sale
Joe Ely of Pleasanton carried a sign to urge support for the California Clean Money Campaign [].
Michael Kochowiec of Walnut Creek, age 71, in September returned from a two-year Peace Corps stint in Mongolia ("very corrupt government") to carry a protest sign expressing concerns about the influence of corporate money in U.S. politics. 
Occupy Walnut Creek is due to be back, same place, same time, next Wednesday.
Fliers were distributed Wednesday in Walnut Creek for a recently scheduled protest, Occupy Concord at noon Saturday, Nov. 5, at Todos Santos Park. "Join the Contra Costa 99 percent in Occupying Concord … We will be marching from the park and demonstrating on the large banks and corporations nearby," the flier read.

Octobers Monthly DIABLO VALLEY MDS meeting, this Sunday Oct.30, has shifted TIME & PLACE so as NOT to be in conflict with with the weekly "Contra Costa 99%" meeting, which is also on Sunday @10-12 am.
We have moved our meeting back one hour to Noon and shifted the location to TODOS SANTOS PLAZA [behind bandstand, across from Panama Bay,3 blocks from Concord Bart] which is where CC99% meeting is also. This will make it easier for our members and friends to come to both meeting.
We will also try to shorten the MDS meeting to a hour &1/2 so as not to burn folks out with double meetings.
* Diablo Valley MDS -Monthly Meeting: SUN.  OCT 30,  NOON-2PM  {New Time}
* DIABLO VALLEY MDS MEETING WILL BE HELD IN CONCORD'S TODOS SANTOS PLAZA [near band stand] [same place as & after 10pm 'Contra Costa 99%' meeting]
Here [below] are the transcripts of a recent "Democracy Now" [not 'consensus now'] in which OGC [Oscar Grant Committee] activist Ray Jax was interviewed by Amy Goodman. ("Police Fire Tear Gas, Flash Grenades as Protesters Try to Retake Occupy Oakland After Predawn Raid" from "Democracy Now!" [])
By the way, Democracy Now's other co-host is Juan Gonzales who was a "old school" SDS organizer and leader of the Columbia Student Strike and Occupation back in the 60's. It was perhaps the most succesful action of it type.
Last night the OGC held a 2 hour 'Speakout Against Police Brutality' at Occupy Oakland, over 1000 attended, all of the key OGC activists spoke including myself. It was followed by a mass nite time march and 'street dance' with the police. NO ARRESTS. Many people carried MDS/SDS 'Memes Guns" [picket signs]

2011-10-25 "Occupy Walnut Creek protest to switch location Wednesday" by Elisabeth Nardi from "Contra Costa Times" newspaper
The loosely organized Occupy Walnut Creek protests, staged downtown the past two Wednesdays, will move down a few blocks to just outside the city's BART station this week.
Titled "Main Street meets Wall Street," the protest will now be at 4 p.m. Wednesday at the corner of Ygnacio Valley Road and California Boulevard.
Kathy Klein, one of the protest organizers, said the downtown location -- at the corner of Main Street and Mt. Diablo Boulevard -- had caused some traffic delays. The new corner, outside the BART station, is very visible, she added.
The movement that started in New York and has spread to San Jose, San Francisco and Oakland is filled with people railing against bank bailouts, corporate greed and political power.
The movement in Walnut Creek has brought together varying groups, including Contra Costa 99%. But hundreds usually protest for a few hours and then leave the area once it gets dark.

2011-10-24 "OCCUPY DIABLO VALLEY" report from the "Contra Costa 99% General Assembly", "Diablo Valley Movement & Students 4 a Democratic Society [MDS/SDS]":
Yesterday (Sun. Oct 23, 2011), eight representatives of "Diablo Valley MDS" & "DVC SDS" met with about a dozen members of the new group Contra Costa 99%" @ Panama Bay in Concord, across the street from Todos Santos Plaza for their now regular Sunday morning weekly 10AM meeting.

It was a excellent meeting, making a lot of progress on planing future actions in the Diablo Valley area, including but not limited to Walnut Creek.The meeting was led by a young sister named Robin [UCP ?] who did a great job.
All of the other 20 "99%ers" agreed that it was time to spread the movement to Concord and after that, other working class towns in the Diablo Area, such as Pittsburg, Antioch & Martinez.
A OCCUPY CONCORD action was set for NOV 5TH, 12 Noon in Todos Santos Park.
It seemed that everybody also thought that a march was also called for to some appropriate destination, but that was not decided on.

There will also be a 3rd "Occupy Walnut Creek' this Wed, Oct 26, 4pm to dark, starting from [New Spot] WALNUT CREEK BART.
This time there will be a march @ 5pm.
We agreed to produce and leaflet the WC action for the Nov 5th Concord Action.
DVC SDS also promised to mass leaflet DVC.
The new group is growing , this its 3rd meeting was the largest so far.
Tho they are attempting to emulate the overall 'process' set by others in the OWS [Occupy wall Street ] movement, there seems to be a openness to democracy and flexibility that will be necessary to build a healthy movement.
They have a impressive website already up and running. CC99% seems to be a much more open 'grass roots' outfit than the 'Occupy WC' group who seems connected to the Democratic Party and closed off, secretive and unwilling to work cooperatively with those to its left, such as CC99%.
CC99% folks were openly wary of the Dems efforts to Co-opt the OWS movement, which is also a concern of Diablo Valley MDS/SDS.
They are also activist orientated ,after the meeting the CC99% organizers took a delegation into "Occupy Oakland" to serve a nice mass brunch to folks, Nick & Stan went with them.
They understand the power of Solidarity.

Tho the group is open to leftism, there is still uneven consciousness with in the group, which is to be expected in any mass movement.
"Joe the painter" announced that that he was a "Reformer" not a "Revolutionary", and several people suggested that we make a special appeal to the Police Union because they are part of the 99%.
This was the first debate. MDS/SDS argued that the cops are not our friends, but arms of the corporate state and will move against the occupations with force, whenever ordered to do so.
Illusions that they are or can be won to our side are false hope that will lead to demoralization.
The vote was on "appealing to the cops" was about even, with SDS/MDS voting against.

We could have "blocked", but instead we used this opportunity to object to the Anti-democratic "consensus" process, where by minority's can "block" majorities, being institutionalized as our process.
We could have "blocked" but stood on 'principal' for a real democratic process that doesn't dis-empower the majority from taking action.
SDS/MDS will not consent to a "Consensus" process and asked that at the next meeting we have a discussion on two political topics [1] consensus vs democracy & [2] the need for DEMANDS.
We motivated this by stating that we want to learn from both the success and failures of the movement and not just blindly and automatically duplicating mistakes without analysis.

MDS/SDS handed out several pieces of literature to participants.Including a special statement from FRH on "Class War Memes & DEMANDS", the SDS "Fight Like An Egyptian/2010 Port Chicago Statement" and the 8 page "Frank Little" comic book.
DVC SDS President Nick was selected to facilitate the next CC99% meeting.
Over all it was a excellent beginning to our new movement, with a new group  of local activist social justice warriors coming on line and MDS/SDS mixing in smoothly with them and building mutual respect and trust.

[signed] FRH
    Diablo Valley MDS
    DVC SDS, community advisor
    Oscar Grant Committee, founding member
Diablo Valley MDS monthly meeting: SUN. OCT 30, NOON-2PM, DVC Round Table Pizza, 85 Chilpancingo Pkwy, Pleasant Hill [across the street from DVC,around the corner from Safeway]
DVC  SDS meets Every Thursday, 12:30-1:45pm, room LA 107, Join Us!

2011-10-13 "The October 12 Walnut Creek Action" from "sputnik99"
The meeting time was arranged by Occupy Walnut Creek (profs, cheers, twinkles) at the Bank of America in the downtown shopping district in Walnut Creek.   Occupy Contra Costa 99 Percent was there, along with Union reps, retired folks, and just about anyone from all walks of life, probably between 150 and 200 people.  Great signs, tons of energy.

2011-10-13 "“Occupy Walnut Creek” on Wednesday afternoon – Did you go?" from "Claycord" monthly newsmagazine
About 200 protesters occupied North Main Street and Mt. Diablo Boulevard in Walnut Creek on Wednesday to protest “corporate greed”.
A small group of Walnut Creek Police Officers were on hand to watch the protesters and make sure nothing got out of hand.
Another protest is scheduled for next Wednesday. The protest was sponsored by a new group called Contra Costa 99 Percent.
Did you go to the event? If so, how well do you think it went?

2011-10-12 "OCCUPY WALNUT CREEK" Action Report from "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS":
Major Diablo Valley MDS/SDS success in 300-400 strong "Occupy Walnut Creek" action this evening, the biggest
Walnut Creek demonstration in several years.
We wrestled popular opinion away from a strong Democratic Party effort to capture event.
Dems brought out hundreds of American flags to show 'patriotism'. [in the middle of a decade long unpopular imperialist war?]
When we first got there, 15 minutes late, it looked like a Tea Party rally.
FRH loudly challenged the reason for all the flags at an anti-Wall Street action. This struck a cord with many other demonstrators who also voiced objections.
With in a hour of our arrival the predominate visual was our MDS picket signs which at least 25% of the people decided to carry. By the end of the rally most flags were gone and everybody was thanking us and thinking we were the main organizers and promising to come back next week for another action.
We gathered 25 new contacts. And many people said they wanted to join and come to the next meeting. A half a dozen union workers that we had marched and rallied with at other actions said they came out because the got our SDS/MDS news blast.
About a dozen SDS/MDS warriors came out and worked the crowd as a team. Some holding the banner,some passing out memes guns [ picket signs],some passing out literature, some gathering contact info.Every body talking to and engaging other protesters.
We passed out around 350 leaflets ,saturating the crowd, with 2 separate versions of MDS/SDS leaflet on the latest news and analysis of the 'Occupy"movement. 'Move On' was also leafleting for this coming Saturdays big Oakland 'Jobs Not Cuts" march from Laney to "Oscar Grant Plaza".
As usual several oldsters confessed they were in SDS 'back in the day' and were so happy to see it back in action.
Walnut Creek Police were not hostile. They had no reason to be. Tho Diablo & Main is a very busy downtown intersection and we had protesters on all 4 corners and up and down the street. Everybody stayed out of the street and crossed the streets according to the lights. Even in Booshy Walnut Creek the motorists loud and continuous honking showed surprising popular support. 5 or 6 news outfits were out covering the action with their camera crews .Nobody planed any tent city or actual 'Occupation". The action finished up around sunset. We gathered up the remains of our picket signs. [over a dozen people asked if they could keep theirs] and about 8 of us marched down to the local pub for cold beer and snacks. We discussed the dynamics of the action. So we talked politics. The bar bouncer asked about MDS ,because of our T shirts he said he dug what we had done today and took a leaflet and gave us the power sign. All & all it was a good day.
We are thinking about following up with a public forum on 'Occupy Wall Street' as a way to bring in to closer association the new contacts we made.

2011-10-10 "Occupy: The Contra Costa 99%" by Janet Rhodes
The Contra Costa 99% met at a coffee shop in Concord, California yesterday morning. We're just getting started, so there were only half a dozen of us. We quickly discovered that although we were responding to a web posting announcing Occupy Concord, most of us lived in Walnut Creek. So we decided to call ourselves the Contra Costa 99%, because it encompasses the entire county. We wanted to emphasize that this is open to everyone no matter what city or town they live in.
We will participate in the march in San Francisco next Saturday, October 15th. If anyone has information on the march, such as location/starting point for the march, please post a comment. I've been googling to get that info, but have not located it yet.
I want to insert a caveat in this post, although most will already assume it--any opinions I express in other diary posts (including  re Obama's re-election, etc) are my opinions alone. They do not reflect the views of the Contra Costa 99%.
One thing became clear five minutes or so into our meeting. We came from a wide variety of economic backgrounds. One of our members is an attorney who works in Walnut Creek and has been involved in many political movements over the years. Another is a house painter. Three of our members are retired. One is a retired school teacher. Another lives on a corporate pension and has not seen a cost-of-living increase in 12 years. Another commented that she lives in Rossmoor and is doing very well. But she wants everyone to do well, and she's getting involved to insure that these benefits remain in place for others.
Our political opinions also varied a lot. One thing we all agree on; the Occupy movement is long overdue and we support it wholeheartedly.
Everyone at the meeting gave me permission to include their comments and ideas in my blog. Unfortunately, since I've been writing this from memory on Sunday evening and Monday morning, a lot of the details of what people expressed with such spirit have faded. So, if Mike, Jackie, Joe, Judy, or Helene visit this blog; I hope you'll feel free to log on and provide the details that I'm missing.
Early in our meeting, Joe informed us that Occupy San Francisco has been occupying the area around the Federal Reserve building. Although the people present yesterday at the inception of the Contra Costa 99% do not intend to actually occupy a location by sleeping over, we are eager to show our support for the Occupy movement. And that's why we'll participate in the march on San Francisco on October 15th.
I've already started scribbling down my ideas for picket signs. Since my husband is much more artistic than me, he'll draw a picture of the Statue of Liberty on a big piece of poster board. And then we'll write in this this text:
Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free
 -they have a pre-existing condition, student loan debt, or underwater mortgage
 -they collect unemployment insurance or demand the right to collectively bargain
 -they really are yearning to breathe free due to asthma & need the EPA to enforce clean air standards
 -they are veterans who need benefits
Anyone who wants to use the above text or a variation on it for an Occupy picket sign, please feel free to do so. Also, it would be really cool if any photos of the signs got uploaded to the Internet.
Once again, if anyone has info re location/starting point for the march in San Francisco next Saturday, October 15th, please post a comment.

2011-04-17 "Tax Day action in Richmond" Action Report from "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS":
About 50+ people came out Sat. to the "from the grass roots" rally & action in Todos Santos Plaza in Concord. Mostly people went to the four corners of the park and lined the south edge of Willow Pass Rd and waved picket signs to honking supportive motorists for over 3 hours.
There was also a short rally toward the beginning [more on that later]. And Wes, the Diablo MDS Elvis, entertained the groups remnants with some class struggle folk songs he wrote, sang and played on his portable, mobile car battery powered PA system towards the end.
Besides the 15 Diablo Valley MDS/SDS members and supporters, there were at least 10 IBEW members with stickers on their shirts, including several black IBEW [Electrical workers], another large pocket of workers from the Plumbers & Steam fitters Union [usually rather conservative] from C-Town's huge oil refineries. There were also Teachers, AFSCME, IWW supporters, Operating Engineers and others.
It truly it was a "from the grass roots" action. I had several nice conversations with all 3 members of the Union family that sparked the action. Very good class conscience, dedicated activists, intelligent family. The hard hatted father is a Operating Engineer [heavy equipment operator], the wife [main organizer] is a union teacher and the daughter, who brought her kids is in AFSCME [public employees]. All 3 were friendly, open, easy to talk to on a variety of political topics, including political activism. The father confessed to me, that in his youth he protested against the Vietnam War and confided to me that we need another American Revolution and had a homemade picket sign to that effect. He was also out spoken against all of the present US wars, including the most recent military action in Libya, even tho he was sympathetic to the rebels.

The family is also very opposed to nuclear power and after the Japanese nuclear crisis, decided action is needed on that also.
The daughter was passing out leaflets calling for a rally for "Green Energy" & "Nuclear Power is not green", again in C-town's Todos Santos Plaza on Friday May 6.
This is probably something Diablo Valley MDS/SDS would like to endorse and come out for and could build for on DVC. We should invite them to come to our next Diablo Valley MDS meeting Sat. April 30th, to talk about their action.

The rally was very short with Tony from the Contra Costa Central Labor Council acting as the MC. He was more of your typical Labor Union Official type, after a short, solidarity with Wisconsin speech he introduced 3 local pro Union, Democratic Party elected politicians as speakers.
Including State Senator Mark DeSaunier [Dennis Kunicinch type], Susan Bonnia and a Walnut Creek City Councilman [Whose name I can't remember but gave a pretty militant speech].
DeSaunier and I have bumped into each other at local political events going back for 20 years. Back to when he was a "progressive Republican" and owned the downtown Bar & Restaurant "TR's', named after his boyhood idol, imperialist President Teddy Roosevelt.
DeSaunier switched Parties and moved to the left and is about as far left as you can go and still be a Democrat. He has been climbing the political ladder and recently suffered a narrow defeat to John Garamendi in the Democratic party primary for 10th Congressional District. He gave a interesting speech pointing out some of the same things I would have, such as how the US has become a have and have not country, with a greater class divide and more wealth concentrated at the top than ever before in history, but his and the politicians that were present, solution was to support the Dems call to reinstate Arnold the Terminators so called temporary regressive sales taxes that hits working family's the hardest and don't really go after all that hoarded wealth at the top.
DeSaunier stuck around for quite a while and made sure to schmooze with the Union leaders and talk to and shake hands with every body who was holding a picket sign, including myself even hinting he might be back for the next action. I told him that the 'Single Payer' [Medicare for all] activists were planning a action to get him to sponsor the Ca. state single payer bill SB 810(?) at his office latter this week. He was concerned and curious about the details [which I didn't have] and assured me he was was and has sponsored the bill already. [this may be true].

The rally MC, Tony, tried to end the rally without us [Diablo Valley MDS/SDS] being allowed to speak, but we insisted that the other local elected offical, DVC Student Body Vice President [DVC SDS President] and Grocery Outlet worker Nick Holmes be allowed to speak, which he did.
Nick gave a rousing speech calling for unity between workers, students and community, called for taxing the rich and led some chants. I overheard the workers talking about how impressed they were.
Before the small crowd could disperse, I stepped forward and bellowed my own impromptu speech, uninvited but well received, speaking on how labor productivity has gone up over 400% in the last 30 years, while living standards have fallen. Where has all the money gone? Too, the upper classes, who are richer now than ever and paying far less taxes than ever. I also pointed out how the wars are draining our economy. I pointed out to loud applause how recent polls show that 87% of Americans and even 67% of republicans say we should tax the rich as a solution to the budget crisis. I said ,"in fact the only people who don't want to tax the rich seem to be the politicians". At which point the 3 politicians began shaking their heads "no" and waving their arms in protest saying they did. I rebutted, by pointing out the difference between the regressive taxes the Dems were offering and a truly progressive tax that went after the rich rather than bleeding the working and poor people. Most got quiet. None including DeSaunier offered any legislation to increase taxes on the rich.
The 'grass roots' people want to start a local movement in their home town. They are tired of going to SF to protest and spoke of C-town as the 'Heartland', and are confident they can build it here. They were very appreciative of us and grateful that we brought our picket signs, which about 20-25 people took and waved around at their spots on the perimeter of the park.

The main organizer wants to collaborate with us on future actions. She admits she is still learning the ropes and seems willing to be flexible on logistics for future actions to make them sustainable and more effective. The family wants to have an ongoing protest every other week at Todos Santos.
I suggested to her that the action was too long ,[4 hours of picketing] which by the 5 PM end of the event, 80% of the people had faded away. Including the IBEW guys who asked the family to extend it to 5 pm.
My experience tells me if you want to build such a ongoing series of actions, it is better to have a much more compact action, [one hour] that doesn't suck down a whole half day of the weekend. And it is better to concentrate the entire gathering on the Willow Pass side of the park were the vast majority of the traffic is, this is more impressive and empowering to the protesters than being dispersed in small numbers in the corners of the park.
I also think it is much better to end the action with a bang than a whimper. That is, the action should end with a collective rally and thank you for coming out, with a announcement and appeal for the next event and maybe even a stop at the local pizza parlor for food & a beer, rather than the action kind of fading away as people get tired and decide to split with out a official ending.
I don't think that style of operation will be able to sustain itself or grow much bigger. I also suggested that that later in the afternoon around 4pm may be a better time were people wouldn't have to break up their entire Sat. to come out and attend. Peoples weekends are precious to them and the less intrusive we are on them, the more likely I believe we will be able to get a commitment for some of it. The mother/wife /organizer seemed open to these suggestions, the husband had more of a, lets stick to what we got attitude. We will see what happens. I propose that Diablo Valley MDS/SDS commit to participate to one hour actions or the 1st hour of the actions, if they stick to the same longer format. We don't want to burn our people out, this is not our only class battle.
Many people in the park who did not come for the action, were very sympathetic and interested, some saying they would come out to the next event.

I'm very proud of Diablo Valley MDS, we had a decent local turnout, a nice solidarity contingent from Richmond Peace & Freedom Party [thanks, Tarnel, Kathy G. & Karl], banners, lots of picket signs, a literature table and a special 4 page Diablo Valley MDS newsletter commenting on Obamas Budget sellout to the Republicans that we distributed over 250 of.
Every body took a job and carried it out. We were highly visible and organized, we even provided some live musical entertainment towards the end [should have done it earlier, when there was more people]. Our Warriors worked like a well organized team. IMPRESSIVE.
Only 2 or 3 DVC students came out tho and no solidarity from any other town than the Hard core Richmond posse. Hopefully we can improve on that.
We collected over 15 new contacts for our list and are are now getting to know some of these activists that we have seen for the 2nd or 3rd time. We are developing what Wes calls our "Memes mobile", a 4 wheeled push cart given to us by retired Union Bus driver Victor W. from MDS, that we can put a hundred picket signs in and push around as we pass them out. It's visually popular.
The "grassroots" folks are very good working class fighters bringing themselves on line in the struggle and dragging some Union officials along with them. They are more impressed by the politicians that came out than we are, but overall I would say they are very healthy, politically and we look forward to working with them in these United Front Actions and developing our dialog.
We plan on inviting the 25 new working class contacts we have met recently to our next Diablo Valley MDS/SDS movie night on Thurs April 21st at Wes's house. The movie will be about the American Indian Movement and one of its poet/leaders John Trudell. We will see what happens.
Fight Like An Egyptian!
Solidarity With Wisconsin!
Frank Little Lives!
[signed] FRH, Organizer for "Diablo Valley MDS/SDS"

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