Tag Archives | Oakland

On Fighting Against Hegemonic Urban Development

BayOfRage reveals infrastructure and redevelopment projects in Oakland (and beyond) as a means of reshaping cities for social control:

Further development will not open space for meaningful social activity and will only constrict it — In the slew of development projects coming down the pipe, residents will be free to consume, travel to and from work, or stay inside to not bother anyone.

Mistakes in architecture will never be repeated in future developments. The UC system learned the danger in building large plazas where dissident students could gather during the free speech movement at Berkeley. University of California campuses built since the sixties are subdivided into a number to smaller campuses, to better contain and neutralize student revolt. Housing projects are built to make the space transparent and easily surveillable, often by the administrators of social services. Likewise, we can be entirely sure that the city of Oakland will never allow the construction of another space like Oscar Grant Plaza, where thousands of people were able to gather, meet their needs and organize an assault against capitalism.

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Oakland’s Law Enforcement Economy

A lot of thought is devoted to the prison-industrial complex, but what about the political economy of police and law enforcement? Pueblo Lands on the Oakland Police Department:

Oakland’s position within the Bay Area’s police and law enforcement economy is characterized by extraction. Oakland spends roughly 40 percent of its general fund budget on cops. The surrounding majority white and middle class suburban cities of the East Bay benefit from Oakland’s massive spending on cops via the redistribution of tax dollars from Oakland to other municipalities.

Most of Oakland’s cops don’t live in the city, meaning that their salaries and other compensation are spent on mortgages, consumer purchases, healthcare, and other forms of taxed consumption where they live. Thus, by our rough calculations, based on data provided by OPD and assembled from a database of public employee pay for 2010, at least $126 million left the city in 2010 in the form of officer compensation.

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Media Roots: DEA & IRS Raid on Oakland Pot Clinics

The IRS and DEA came to downtown Oakland this afternoon to aggressively raid multiple medical marijuana dispensaries as well as Oaksterdam, an educational facility that teaches plant cultivation to medical marijuana patients. Robbie Martin of Media Roots ran to catch the raid and captured an intense standoff between the people and the federal officials. He also confronts an ABC 7 news reporter after he hears them tell the police they are doing an ‘amazing job.’

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The Infectious Escalation of Occupy Oakland

402px-Occupy_Oakland_PosterNatalie W writes at Diatribe Media:

An unofficial count of 400 Occupy Oakland demonstrators were arrested Saturday, January 28, after being fired upon, beaten, kettled, and trapped by Oakland riot police.

The Occupy Oakland social movement is rooted in the lower-income, ethnically diverse Bay area city and has been a previous site of violent police repression. Oakland has been a nexus of social unrest long before the Occupation catalyzed it as an outlet for frustration.

Oakland boasts closing public schools, an annual median family income at $56,000 in 2008, and in 2010, it was listed as the fifth most dangerous in the US with a history of police brutality. With all of these simmering tensions, Occupy Oakland’s actions should not come as a surprise to anyone, least of all elected officials like Mayor Quan and Interim Police Chief Howard Jordan.

The Occupy movement is a global social demonstration aimed at overturning the interconnectivity of money/economic/political entitlement.… Read the rest

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Calling Out The Police For Hiding Their Nameplates

The California Penal Code states that uniformed police officers must wear “a badge, nameplate, or other device which bears clearly…the identification number or name of the officer”. Feel free to remind the police of this when they forget:

Officer Hargraves of the Oakland Police Department is called out by a citizen journalist for covering his name tag with a strip of black electrical tape. Police lieutenant Hu removes the tape while the camera rolls.

The issue of “anonymous police” remains a serious problem. This is especially true for “riot police” who wear dark anonymous uniforms while firing rubber bullets, tear gas canisters and flash-bang grenades into the crowd.

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ABC And CBS News Both Cut Away Due To Technical Difficulties At Onset Of Oakland Police Violence

abcIn more on the mainstream media’s bizarre coverage of Tuesday night’s police brutality in Oakland, a number of blogs have commented on this — both ABC and CBS local affiliates had helicopters providing live feeds as events unfolded in front of Oakland’s City Hall. Allegedly, both television channels cut their transmissions when the police began attacking protesters, and both said it was due to their helicopters’ needing refueling. That’s right — both the ABC and CBS helicopters ran out of fuel at the same moment. The moment when the newsworthy events began to occur. One can only say, wow. Oakland Local writes:

OPD gave us 5 minutes to disperse, and then attacked the crowd with tear gas, flash grenades, and rubber bullets. I was there until that point, and I can testify that it was a peaceful march until the police attacked it.

Moreover, they just happened to begin firing tear gas into the crowd right after the two major media outlets that were covering it with live feeds turned off their cameras.

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Iraq Veteran In Critical Condition After Being Shot By Police At Occupy Oakland

olsenfbOn Tuesday night, the Oakland police staged a brutal attack on peaceful protesters gathered outside of City Hall. Among the worst injured was Scott Olsen, a 24-year-old ex-Marine who served two tours in Iraq and now works as an IT systems analyst and volunteers in anti-war groups. He is in critical condition with a fractured skull and brain swelling after being shot in the face by an officer with a teargas canister, the Guardian reports. Someone managed to capture this shocking video of police maliciously using a explosive device against a group of people as they attempt to move the gravely wounded Olsen to safety:

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Night Of Police Clashes With Occupy Oakland Protestors

Tuesenhanced-buzz-23938-1319631603-0day morning, police forcibly cleared hundreds of people from the public plaza near Oakland’s City Hall. When the protesters tried to reassemble at the plaza last night, officers over loudspeaker ordered people to disperse or risk “chemical agents.” Riot police then attacked with tear gas, smoke bombs, and rubber bullets in a scene that seemed to devolve into chaos. Firsthand accounts and video footage make it pretty clear that this was a case of widespread and unprovoked police brutality, including officers gassing and firing upon children, the elderly, veterans, and the disabled.

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