Occupy Tucson began their campaign at Armory Park today, October 15th, after two weeks of planning and meetings of various working groups such as the legal, PR and outreach, peace keeping, and art groups. About 1000 people over the day attended and about 350 marched orderly through downtown.
“”Everyone’s been very peaceful and cooperative,” said Lieutenant Danny Denogean of the Tucson Police Department, who was onsite at the park. “We don’t anticipate any problems.”” Tucson Police Chief Villasenor stated that the police will keep a low profile and that “We do not want to be the issue that causes the confrontation.” He also said that the protesters would be informed of the laws about park usage, including a 10:30 PM curfew, but that they weren’t prepared to start forcing people out of the park or create hostility. That is still to be seen, but let’s hope that all the outreach and communication we have had with the Tucson Police Department has created some good will and that the police will not create unnecessary conflicts like they have at other Occupy sites.
What follows is a fact sheet regarding economic inequality and corporate and political dominance of our government that has been used for the Occupy Tucson Movement. Hopefully others can use this list of facts to teach others and propel them to push for a change in our system.
Record poverty rates:
A record poverty rate for 2010 was recorded at 15.1 percent, 46.2 million people, also a record.
CNN Money. http://money.cnn.com/2011/09/13/news/economy/poverty_rate_income/index.htm
Real Unemployment 16.2%
The real unemployment rate, the official rate plus discouraged workers no long looking for work plus part time workers who want full time work was 16.2% in June.
Black unemployment is nearly double white unemployment and hispanic unemployment is 150% higher than whites. As of September, white unemployment was at 8.7 percent, the Hispanic unemployment rate was at 12.4 percent and the black unemployment rate was at 16.1 percent.
There are 2.3 million Americans in prison, and these prisoners are not counted in the unemployment statistics. We have the highest incarceration rate in the world at 743 per 100,000.
Between 1979 and 2007 the average income of the bottom 50 percent of American households grew by 6%; the top 1% saw their income increase by 229 percent.”
44.2% unemployment for Blacks teenagers 16-19 years of age
The top 1% wealthy people in the U.S. control 34.6% and the top 20% wealthiest people in the U.S. control over 85% of the wealth leaving 15% for the rest of us. http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/wealth.html
Households have lost $8.7 trillion of wealth since 2007
Minority Families hit Hardest
From 2005 to 2009, inflation-adjusted median wealth fell by 66% among Hispanic households and 53% among black households, compared with just 16% among white households.
Lenders foreclosed on 1 million homes in 2010 and 918,000 in 2009
Wealthy Tax Evasion
One Quarter of Millionaires Pay a Lower Tax Rate than 10 Million Middle-Income Americans
From the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service
2/3rds of US Corporations Pay Zero Federal Taxes
American corporations have $1.8 trillion in reserve cash but Congress won’t raise the marginal tax rates for these companies to help create jobs.
The 2010 ratio between average worker and average CEO compensation was 325-to-1. CEO pay last year averaged $10,762,304
America’s oil, gas and coal industry spent $44.5m in the first three months of 2009 in an effort to stop environmental regulations such as cap and trade.
So far, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have cost $2.3-2.7 trillion with no end in sight while teachers are being laid off in every state for lack of funding.
There was $3.5 billion spent lobbying Congress in 2010.
The Financial Sector has given over $96 million in donations for the 2012 elections, businesses total of over $314 million in donations compared to $15.5 million for labor.
Candidates for Congress with the most campaign money win over 90% of the time.
Tex “Occupy Tucson” Shelters
We are the 99%