120K at Saturday Rally–Will Capitol Police Be New Sisyphus?

A quick update:

Yesterday in a cold, snowy afternoon, over 120,000 Wisconsinites (and a few from out of state in solidarity) rallied against the horrid Budget Repair Bill. This greatly exceeded the rally the previous Saturday and included at least three marching bands. The media has largely ignored these rallies and I noticed the lack of media on Saturday. The previous week when it was promoted as a show down with the Tea Party, the media came ready to cover a fight. After seeing the Tea Party outnumbered by some counts as much as 35 to one, the media lost interest. No conflict, no story. Nevermind the Government’s attempt to deny basic human rights and the questionable tactics of the majority during voting in the Assembly.

Today, the Capitol Police have assured the world that they will be clearing the Capitol at 5 pm (CST). Thousands are now inside (including off duty police officers who have joined the protestors) the Capitol refusing to leave. It is expected that the Capitol Police will begin a very slow process of dragging peaceful resisters out that, depending on how much the cops really want to do this, may take all night.

Then, at 8:00 am tomorrow morning the Capitol doors will open and people may once again enter the Capitol. Depending on the determination of everyone involved, tonight’s action may become a daily event. Close the doors at 6 p.m, slowly remove people who refuse to leave in time to open the doors to allow everyone back in.

The protestors are being trained in passive resistance and everyone expects this struggle to remain peaceful despite what Fox News reports.

I won’t be able to get to the Capitol today (sadly), but my heart is with them!

About John McNamara

John spent 26 years with Union Cab of Madison Cooperative and currently helps develop co-op in the Pacific Northwest. He holds a Masters in Management: Co-operatives and Credit Unions from Saint Mary's University and hopes to finish his Ph.D. in Business Administration soon. He has served on the board of the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives and the Board of Governors for the Democracy at Work Network. He currently sits on the Co-op Circle and Mission Circle for Sociocracy for All. He teaches on worker co-operatives and democratic management in the summer at The Evergreen State College.
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