The West Coast's version of "Occupy Wall Street" is off to an anemic start. Despite the support of ACORN's offspring - ACCE, SEIU, and other unions, the planned anti-capitalist protests (Make The Banks Pay! & Mass Mobilization To Make Wall Street Pay) were not well attended, ending the week with a march of less than 1,000 people.
As you can see from this Facebook message thread, people seem to be confused about where and when the events are happening. (Content warning -- we did not remove or edit any of the strong language in these posts.)
Perhaps the confusion within this movement stems from the fact that they have no actual goals/demands. At least that's what Van Jones wrote in an op-ed piece on Huffington Post.
The young heroes on Wall Street today baffle the world because they have issued no demands.
The lack of organization and problems caused by a leaderless movement might also be part of dealing with a group that believes anarchy is the answer. If you do not want structure of any kind in your life, the creation a movement without a formal organization or structure to disseminate information will be difficult, if not impossible. #OccupySF -- one of the websites trying to distribute information seems to be facing this reality.
Back to the actual protests and some of the coverage seen online via Livestream.
On the first night, it appeared that only a handful of protesters were camping out at the Herman Plaza - the protest's "General Assembly." The man speaking in this clip claims to be a lawyer who came out to help. At 2:00 into the video he makes a comment about Michael Moore sending his minions to see the protest, but deciding that there were not enough people to justify his attendance, so he went to New York.
[livestream http://cdn.livestream.com/embed/occupyfdsf?layout=4&clip=pla_2600fb33-1d4b-408b-807e-8f819cdb6760&color=0xe7e7e7&autoPlay=false&mute=false&iconColorOver=0x888888&iconColor=0x777777&allowchat=true&height=295&width=480 expand=1]
There were some curious folks among those who did find their way to the protest. Take Anna Houston for example, a young Canadian who came to San Francisco to join the movement. (Isn't Canada's economy doing a lot better than America's?)
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/v/-j5MsXjOEdQ?version=3&hl=en_US&rel=0 expand=1]
The culmination of a week's worth of activities, education and protest ended with six people squatting inside of a Chase bank as a small gathering of chanting, sign-carrying protesters waited outside.
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/v/xsEJh9RJNwE?version=3&hl=en_US&rel=0 expand=1]
Following a less than dynamic start, the protests will move to Los Angeles next week, but not before the organizers do some training. Here is the schedule for the San Francisco group (as posted on one of their Facebook pages).
"Join the fun" and "Cheers?
Seriously? It all makes sense when you see the photo posted by the guy who is in charge of the schedule. Meet Robert Benson.
The Facebook page also included a clever, tongue-in-cheek post.
This weekend the protesters are camped out on the plaza in front of the Federal Reserve Building in San Francisco. Next week, the planned events move to Los Angeles and include two scheduled visits to the homes of Wall Street executives and a "trashing" of a bank.
The Blaze will update this story as information becomes available.