Occupy Wall Street goes global
The U.S. anti-corporate movement has inspired an offshoot occupation in London. It will kick off this Saturday with a rally headed to the London Stock Exchange, as Dealbook notes today. OccupyLSX describes itself as part of a global movement against “corporate greed” and inequality, and UK Uncut — a group of activists who’ve fought austerity measures — has already signed on to support it. From the OccupyLSX Web site:
The words ‘corporate greed’ ring through the speeches and banners of protests across the globe. After huge bail-outs and in the face of unemployment, privatisation and austerity we still see profits for the rich on the increase. But we are the 99%, and on October 15th our voice unites across gender and race, across borders and continents as we call for equality and justice for all.
There have been recent popular uprisings in London, like this summer’s riots that many have linked to economic discontent and anti-austerity measures. By contrast, the OccupyLSX movement has already distinguished itself as an organized, civil society protest with a clear purpose. Unlike their New York counterparts, the OccupyLSX organizers say they want a specific agenda, vowing to build “a future free from austerity, growing inequality, unemployment, tax injustice and a political elite who ignores its citizens, and work towards concrete demands to be met.” It’s not the only popular U.S. movement to go global in recent months: a Tea Party offshoot sprung up in Australia last year.
OccupyLSX cites its Facebook page as a display of its growing support: as of Thursday morning, it had about 4,600 people saying they’d show up. That’s a small crowd, as far as these sorts of demonstrations go, but piggybacking off the U.S. movement, OccupyLSX is anticipating the media attention: their Web site already lists dedicated press contacts.
*Update: Other cities spanning 78 countries are also planning October 15 solidarity events to protest economic injustice, but not all seem to be as directly modeled on Occupy Wall Street.