October 11, 2011, 1:33 PM — Ever since they first camped out, then decamped and had to keep dodging police with orders to arrest anyone camping, setting up shelters or any other permanent-looking obstructions, the OccupyWallStreet protest has been living on borrowed time.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the NYPD made clear they might have to accept the protest, but wouldn't tolerate any disruption in the flow of the city's traffic or business – a defeatist criterion for protesters, who were there to get the attention of Wall Street and try to at least change what it considers business as usual, if not stop business cold.
Yesterday the Mayor loaned the Occupation more time, saying protesters can remain "indefinitely" as long as they and the city can maintain a balance of chaos between a protest disruptive enough to be visible and the city's ability to function.
Last night protest organizers began touting their plan for a "Millionaires March" – a kind of countercultural Christmas Caroling event in which the main body of protesters will visit the front stoops of wealthy New Yorker financiers, including ultra-conservative conservative political funder (and oilman) David Koch, Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, News Corp.'s Rupert Murdoch and others.
The purpose is ostensibly to highlight the two percent tax on millionaires that expires in December, but is at least equally designed to reframe the intent of the movement as a protest against tax laws, corporate and financial regulations and government oversight organizers say all align to favor of big business and millionaires at the expense of the middle- and working classes.
Trying to put a face on 'the economy'
The Millionaires March – more a Billionaires March, but that doesn't alliterate – will not include a stop at Mayor Bloomberg's place, out of consideration for his decision to let the Occupation stretch out its protest a little longer.
"The bottom line is that if people want to express themselves, as long as they obey the laws we'll allow them to," Bloomberg said to reporters as he prepared to march in yesterday's Columbus Day parade. "If they break the laws we're going to do what we're supposed to do and enforce the laws."
Source: live picture, OccupyWallSt.org