Occupy Goldman Sachs: The Protesters March On 'The Vampire Squid'

Occupy Goldman

Robert Johnson — Business Insider

“The first thing you need to know about Goldman Sachs is that it’s everywhere. The world’s most powerful investment bank is a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity…” -Matt Taibbi, Rolling StoneIf you missed that quote when it first graced the pages of Rolling Stone last year, you probably heard it repeated again and again everywhere since.  There was little to stop it. The image of Goldman sucking the life out of its victims was just too priceless for the media to pass up.

Occupy Wall Street couldn’t help itself either.

Today, in solidarity with western protesters who aim to shut down the West Coast deep water ports, a little over 100 Occupy Wall Street protesters marched to Goldman Sachs on 200 West Street around 8:00 a.m. to show everyone inside the bank what the movement thought of it.

The demonstrators chanted: “F*** You Goldman Sachs, Occupy Strikes Back.” At our last count, 17 people were arrested.

Loud costumes and a brass band aside though, this was a serious message. As Rutgers history Professor James Livingston put it as he addressed the crowd:

“We have two problems, surplus capital and superfluous profits…and we know where they come from. For the last 30 years income has been transferred away from labour and consumption to capital. Private investment is not necessary to drive growth…profits aren’t necessary. They can do two things — they can sit in banks, or be channeled into speculative markets as they have been since 1983….Now we’re subject to boom and bust cycles… We need to send money back to wages and socialize investment. We need to turn these people (bankers) into public servants.”

Think that’s radical? You should check out the pictures.

Protesters started gathering across from Zuccotti Park at about 7:00 a.m. Monday morning in a show of support for the West Coast march to shutdown the ports

NYPD Counter Terrorism showed up, because you never know what's going to happen around Ground Zero

The theme was Vampire Squids, in reference to Matt Taibbi's Rolling Stone piece on the evils of Goldman Sachs

Squid headgear was handed out freely

There was even a paper-mâché squid head with fabric tentacles attached to an umbrella. When opened and closed they attempted to give the appearance of undulating tentacles. Maybe a better idea in theory than practice.

Not that there wasn't serious conversation. This girl was outlining the finer points of Glass-Steagall for her fellow protesters

Before she joined the crew at the front of the lineup, behind the Occupy banner

These signs, referencing the media blackout when Zuccotti was cleared, were handed out to several demonstrators

And then the march was underway

At the WTC PATH train stop, the Zuccotti march was met with reinforcements

The UAW and union marchers (also bringing their own squid) fell in step and continued on to Goldman's HQ at 200 Water Street

The police blocked off a portion of West Street, actually the wrong way, and the marchers got bottled up. Eventually, police pointed them in the right direction.

In a couple minutes the protesters were in front of Goldman. Security and police were ready.

Workers scrambled to get out before Occupiers made it impossible

From inside, people watched

And took pictures

The group threaded their way around the back of the building to create a perimeter

Security guarded all the entrances

Construction workers above the Shake Shack stopped to snap a couple pictures of their own

Protesters applied a lot of this tape to Goldman's windows, which the police promptly removed

And then, the march was over and Goldman settled in to watch the show

There was a six-piece band, who were actually pretty good, making a lot of noise

Not sure if they could be heard inside, but Goldman employees flocked to the windows

Some occupiers took a moment to look back. It was as close together as the two groups would come.

It's hard to believe it's been over a month since US veterans marched in protest

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