What, exactly, is a “US Day of Rage?” Well, on September 17th we may find out for certain, but until then, The Blaze is revealing what information does exist about this very nefarious-sounding campaign.
A US Day of Rage is the title given to a day of ostensibly “non-violent” civil disobedience orchestrated by a group of radicals — that reportedly include SEIU’s Stephen Lerner and ACORN founder Wade Rathke (who, coincidentally, formerly served as president of SEIU’s local New Orleans branch) — targeting Wall Street and U.S. capitalism. It’s worth noting that the title of the movement — if its intentions are indeed non-violent in nature — appears to contradict itself slightly.
But what is perhaps even more interesting than its title is who is allegedly behind the movement.
You may recall that back in March The Blaze exposed Lerner for stating his aspirations to destroy JP Morgan Chase and cause the collapse of the entire stock market.
Now, the US Day of Rage protests, staged by a collective of activist groups allegedly in conjunction with Lerner and Rathke, are planning the actual “occupation” of Wall Street September 17, complete with a tent city set smack-dab in the middle of Manhattan’s financial district. Similar protests are purportedly set to take place across the nation — and even world– at the same time. Some Day of Rage organisers are even calling on activists to squat in Manhattan’s financial district for months.
The Blaze’s report on Lerner, who serves on SEIU’s International Executive Board, caught the union agitator stating:
So, a bunch of us around the country are thinking about who would be a really good company to hate? We decided that would be JP Morgan Chase. …. And so we’re going to roll out over the next couple of months what will hopefully be an exciting campaign about JP Morgan Chase that is really about challenge the power of Wall Street. And so what we’re looking at is in the first week of May, we get enough people together – we’re starting now – to really have a week of action in New York with the goal of … I don’t want to go into any details because I don’t know which police agents are in the room, but the goal would be that we would roll out in New York the first week in May.
Then, like clockwork, some 400 activists brought Lerner’s dream to fruition and converged on JP Morgan Chase’s annual shareholders’ meeting in May — this time in Columbus, Ohio rather than New York. The group that staged this particular protest, the National People’s Action, reportedly confirmed it was there as part of its “Showdown in America” campaign against the big banks. Since the location of JP Morgan Chase’s meeting was surrounded by a moat, the activists, who likened themselves to Robin Hood, even brought a collapsible bridge to “storm the castle.”
It is also perhaps worth noting that in March, The Blaze reported Rathke and Lerner called for “days of rage in 10 cities around JP Morgan Chase.” Rathke mentioned some of Lerner’s key assertions:
While labelling Lerner an ex-SEIU official who was signaling that unions and community organisations were “dead,” also reported hook-line-and-sinker that in May, according to Lerner, there would be days of rage in 10 cities around JP Morgan Chase signally the beginning of the anti-banking jihad.
So it might add up now that Klein Online reported Rathke’s efforts are being organised by Lerner, who, as part of his planned protests, called for “a week of civil disobedience, direct action all over the city:”
The planned Sept. 17 day of rage seems to be the culmination of Rathke’s efforts.
Those efforts are being organised by Stephen Lerner, an SEIU board member who reportedly visited the Obama White House at least four times.
The aim, according to Lerner, is to “destabilize the folks that are in power and start to rebuild a movement.”
“How do we bring down the stock market? How do we bring down their bonuses? How do we interfere with their ability to, to be rich?” Lerner asked rhetorically in March.
So, it appears, Columbus could have been one of the 10 U.S. cities en route to New York for the “big day.”
Listen to The Blaze original video from March where Lerner, who has been dubbed a domestic terrorist, reveals his true intentions about JP Morgan. Then read further as we explain how the upcoming Day of Rage campaign in September could actually serve as the launchpad for Lerner’s war against JP Morgan and Wall Street as a whole:
Below is Lerner’s response to The Blaze’s audio that captured his damning statements:
In a follow-up report later in March, The Blaze revealed that Lerner penned an OpEd in a progressive publication outlining his campaign to bring down the economy and “stoke simmering discontent into concrete, concerted direct action” in a move to “turn the tables” on Wall Street.
But the Days of Rage campaign might go even further than originally thought. While one US Day of Rage website is somewhat vague about its slated activities, other Days of Rage organisers are quite bold in revealing their intentions to occupy Wall Street September 17 for literally months in a kind of “ US Tahrir Square.”AdBusters published a statement by a group dubbed “Culture Jammers” that states:
On September 17, we want to see 20,000 people flood into lower Manhattan, set up tents, kitchens, peaceful barricades and occupy Wall Street for a few months. Once there, we shall incessantly repeat our one simple demand until Barack Obama capitulates.
…there is a very real danger that if we naively put our cards on the table and rally around the “overthrow of capitalism” or some equally outworn utopian slogan, then our Tahrir moment will quickly fizzle into another inconsequential ultra-lefty spectacle soon forgotten. But if we have the cunning to come up with a deceptively simple Trojan Horse demand …
See you on Wall St. Sept 17. Bring Tent.
Not to mention the myriad coordinated Days of Rage AdBusters reveals are set to roll out at other stock exchanges worldwide:
Inspired by the visceral potential of the Wall Street occupation, the Indignados of Spain just sent us word that on September 17th they too will set up camp outside the Madrid Stock Exchange. The surprise announcement, that their #TOMALABOLSA will join your #OCCUPYWALLSTREET, may embolden other cities as well. A rumour suggests the financial district of Paris may be next … or will it be Toronto’s Bay Street, Sydney’s Martin Place, or some yet to be chosen site in London?
Then on October 6th another kind of encampment begins in Washington, DC.
With a bit of luck, and the right mix of nonviolence and tenacity, S17 just might cascade into a Tahrir Moment on an international scale – wouldn’t that be something?
We call on jammers across the world to occupy financial districts on September 17:
- #TOMALABOLSA in Madrid, Spain (Confirmed)
- #OCCUPYFDSF in San Francisco, USA (Confirmed)
- #OCCUPYBAYSTREET in Toronto, Canada
- #OCCUPYCANARYWHARF in London, UK
- #OCCUPYMARTINPLACE in Sydney, Australia
- #OCCUPYBANKENVIERTEL in Frankfurt, Germany
- #OCCUPYMARUNOUCHI in Tokyo, Japan
But if a group of enraged activists — endorsed by the likes of Stephen Lerner — occupying Wall Street with tent cities were not enough — it actually gets worse. The term “Day of Rage” finds origin in “Days of Rage,” a violent set of riots waged in Chicago in 1969 by the Weathermen’s Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn. The Weather Underground terrorist organised his “Rage” in an attempt to bring troops back home from Vietnam. Similarly, this most recent US Day of Rage is co-organised by a group that calls itself “The War Resistance League.”
Yet despite Ayers’ initial claim that his Day of Rage, too, would be “non-violent,” during the four day rampage that started in Chicago’s historic Lincoln Park, the Weathermen arrived in full-clad battle gear, helmets and weapons in tow, and called on activists to kill the rich and even their own parents.
During an interview with Chicago Mag, Ayers, with no regrets, summed up his riot’s intended purpose, stating, “kill all the rich people. Break up their cars and apartments. Bring the revolution home, kill your parents—that’s where it’s really at.“
As if inciting legions of radicals to kill anyone — rich or poor — were not abhorrent enough, Ayers and crew took it that one step further by calling on people to murder their own parents. One wonders if those taking part in the newly reborn Day of Rage, staged by ACORN and SEIU affiliates, harbor the same deep seated blood-lust and penchant for violence in their own hearts.
Ayers went on to explain away his Day of Rage, saying, “the rhetoric was excessive because the times were excessive.”
“The war had escalated, so naturally the language escalated. No one thought I meant that literally.” But as it turns out, Ayers did.
As the Weathermen marched on, smashing windows and vandalizing property through the tear-gassed streets of Chicago, nearly 300 militants were arrested and over 60 people were injured. Some reports estimate the damage climbed to hundreds of thousands of dollars, which, four decades ago, was a steep price indeed.
But, never breaking with character, the remorseless Ayers trivialized the destruction, stating that “the Days of Rage was an attempt to break from the norms of kind of acceptable theatre of ‘here are the anti-war people: containable, marginal, predictable, and here’s the little path they’re going to march down, and here’s where they can make their little statement.’ We wanted to say, “No, what we’re going to do is whatever we had to do to stop the violence in Vietnam.'”
Similarly, two of the activists from the new Day of Rage revealed similar intentions when they explained that physically “putting your body in the way” of an injustice is more effective than traditional means of non-violent protests.
But to Ayer’s delight, his Days of Rage ended with his band of radical protesters marauding the streets of Chicago causing complete destruction.
“The streets became sparkling and treacherous with the jagged remains of our rampage,” a nostalgic Ayers wrote about his window-smashing “crystal chaos.”
Meanwhile, the broader US Day of Rage movement, that also operates under the moniker, “Occupy Wall Street,” states it is an “idea not a party” and lists its basic tenets and principles on the official website. Under the heading “We Have Had Enough,” Day of Rage states:
Legitimate government is born of the self-interest and will of the people expressed by its citizens in free and fair elections. It does not spring from a tyranny of special interests, patronage, or a system or ideology that runs counter to the aims of life.
The institutions of government were designed to protect the principles of our democratic republic and to serve the will of citizens.
Corporations, even those owned by foreign shareholders, use money to act as the voices of millions, while individual citizens, the legitimate voters, are silenced and demoralized by the farce.
US Day of Rage’s mission statement also says it is “here to help facilitate state and city level organisation, and to organise the federal protest at the U.S. Capitol.”
So now we will have to wait and see what becomes of the latest Days of Rage incarnation. We are, however, given a little insight into the thinking some organisers of the US Day of Rage via several informational videos posted on Rage’s website.
The “how to” videos and”handbook” on civil disobedience provided by the movement’s organisers do include instruction on how to resist arrest and disrupt court hearings. Not a hopeful sign they intend to remain on the “civil” side of disobedience.
In the video, one of the organisers even likens his movement to Gandhi’s. We wonder what Gandhi would say about the use of the word “rage” at all, let alone if the protests turn out the same, violent way the Weathermen’s did. Will these new radicals, lead by SEIU’s Stephen Lerner, rampage through the streets of New York, vandalizing property, injuring people and wreaking havoc until the tear gas is deployed? We shudder to think.
Below are two US Day of Rage informational videos and a copy of their “Handbook for Nonviolent Campaigns” can be found here.
Followed by a video that came under a section titled “Jailhouse Solidarity” that deals with legal issues that can arise from engaging in protests: