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Occupy London brings some noise to the Carlton Club, spiritual home of the Conservative Party

 

As the grand finale of Occupy Everywhere, the nationwide day of creative action called by Occupy London to mark its two month anniversary, London’s detachment of the global movement for social and economic justice today brought a street party direct to the spiritual home of the Conservative Party, the Carlton Club. [1]

Founded in the aftermath of the Great Reform Act of 1832 – by those who opposed it – the membership rules of the Carlton Club, the oldest and most elite of all Conservative clubs (69 St James’ Street  London SW1A 1PJ) state that only persons of full age who support the Conservative Party are eligible to join.

Aiming to highlight the City’s influence over the Conservatives’ finances and policy direction, supporters of Occupy London brought musical instruments and – in a nod to the movement’s antecedents in the tradition of non-violent direct action – pots and pans to the Carlton Club and used them to signal their dissent to those inside. In doing so, they asserted that the public will be heard. [2]

In the week that David Cameron asserted that the interests of the United Kingdom were synonymous with the interests of the City of London, Occupy London says  - in the words of Jesse Jackson  - that “enough is enough.” In a city that is increasingly a place where the public move by courtesy rather than by right, supporters of Occupy London are reclaiming the capital’s streets as a symbolic start to reclaiming its politics. [3]

Occupy London supporter Gary Parker said: “It is time to reclaim our democracy and our streets from the financiers and their political puppets who act not in the interests of society but for a privileged few. We say to David Cameron, to Boris Johnson – this is your wake up call. We urge you to join the conversation to create a more just society for all. The time for action to address inequalities is now.  Otherwise, just like the hedge funds and stock market, you are gambling with our future.”

Earlier today: Rev Jesse Jackson addresses Occupy London

Earlier today Occupy London was honoured to welcome Rev Jesse Jackson to the steps of St Paul’s. In his address, Rev Jackson described the Occupy movement as a “global spirit… whose time has come.” Paying tribute to the Occupy movements in New York, San Francisco, London and across the world, Rev Jackson expressed his wish that occupiers, as “canaries in the coalmine,” would increase awareness of poverty, homelessness and the denial of access to education, employment and healthcare – and encourage others to join in the struggle for economic and social justice.

Occupy the City, Occupy the Mind

Occupy Everywhere started at 10.30am with supporters of Occupy London indulging in some horsing around at the Lloyds Bank headquarters on Gresham Street.  Accompanied by a pantomime horse, a giant “Occupy Everywhere” banner and a mobile carnival, the procession caused brought smiles to the faces of office workers, cabbies and school children alike. [4]

Notes
[1] The Carlton Club http://www.carltonclub.co.uk/
[2] Guardian – City’s influence over Conservatives laid bare by research into donation – Donations from finance account for half of payments to Tories since 2010 general election – http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2011/sep/30/city-conservatives-donations / Telegraph – Gene Sharp: How to start a revolution – http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/film/filmmakersonfilm/8841546/Gene-Sharp-How-to-Start-a-Revolution.html
[3] Guardian – Private spaces are stifling protest: Occupy London’s struggle to find a public space for protest reflects the increasing private control of our towns and cities -

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/oct/26/private-spaces-protest-occupy-london

[4] Occupy London horse around in the City; tell Lloyds enough is enough – no more taking taxpayers for a ride – http://occupylsx.org/?p=2508

 
© 2012 Occupy London
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