published Thursday, October 27th, 2011

Protesters occupy Chestnut Street in Chattanooga

Follow us on Twitter for the latest breaking news
  • photo
    Stephen Baker displays his protest placard today in front of the Bank of America on Chestnut Street in Chattanooga.
    Photo by Tim Barber.
    enlarge photo

Poll
Do you support the "Occupy" protests?

Dozens of protesters who say they are part of Occupy Chattanooga movement in support of the same movement on Wall Street started gathering this morning on Chestnut Street in downtown Chattanooga.

“We’re protesting the cynical display of corporate greed,” Chattanooga resident Frank Eaton, 53, said. He was standing with more than two dozen others holding signs.

“We can’t afford $10,000 for a table for access to our Congressman, [but] what we can afford is to exercise free speech and protest the fact that this is a fundraiser when it should be a job summit,” Eaton said.

He said many members of the group are protesting tonight’s fundraiser at the Walden Club for U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann, R-Tennessee, who will be accompanied by U.S. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio.

“We think Boehner and Fleischmann should be having a job summit, not a fundraiser,” he said.

The group of protesters, many of whom were on hand at 6 a.m. Thursday, formed up across Chestnut Street from Bank of America, where Eaton said some of the occupy protesters had issues with the bank’s practices.

The Walden Club is in the top floor of the building known as Republic Centre and that includes the bank.

Three men in suits standing outside the front doors of the bank said they were not employees, but observing what was going on. There were a couple of security guards present in front of the bank and Chattanooga police patrol cars were staging in nearby blocks as more protesters appeared to be looking for places to park.

Madeleine Dougherty, 27, also of Chattanooga, said she’s “fed up with greed and I’m fed up with the way corporations are paying ... for the votes of people like Fleischmann and Boehner.”

Dougherty said she hopes more protesters show up throughout the day. The event is slated to run from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Follow the latest Chattanooga news on Facebook

about Ben Benton...

Ben Benton is a news reporter at the Chattanooga Times Free Press. He covers Southeast Tennessee and previously covered North Georgia education. Ben has worked at the Times Free Press since November 2005, first covering Bledsoe and Sequatchie counties and later adding Marion, Grundy and other counties in the northern and western edges of the region to his coverage. He was born and raised in Cleveland, Tenn., a graduate of Bradley Central High School. Benton ...

48
Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
cannonball said...

How about occupying some of the housing projects or coolidge park after dark? Thats where our real trouble is.

October 27, 2011 at 9:06 a.m.
Jack_Dennis said...

Protesting the "cynical display of corporate greed". Don't be meanies you big greedy corporations. Bwahahahaha

October 27, 2011 at 10:01 a.m.
chatter10 said...

perfectly stated "cannonball" 100% agree Chattanooga has a real problem and its not wall street or bank of america

October 27, 2011 at 10:02 a.m.
amnestiUSAF84 said...

Or they could occupy those meth dens in the county where much of the meth making takes place.

October 27, 2011 at 10:19 a.m.
holdout said...

Except 23 people haven't been gunned down in any meth dens.

October 27, 2011 at 10:39 a.m.
patriot1 said...

I agree cannonball....might help clean up the gene pool as well.

October 27, 2011 at 10:40 a.m.
sla2010 said...

I would love to know where all these people work who have the time to sit down there and "protest" from 9am-6pm. do they not have jobs?

October 27, 2011 at 10:43 a.m.
holdout said...

I want to protest as well. I am really ticked at the rich and powerful poster board and magic marker companies.

October 27, 2011 at 10:50 a.m.
jai_eugene said...

Funny Cannonball. Those hippies would soil themselves after dark.

October 27, 2011 at 10:54 a.m.
Salsa said...

Yawn.

October 27, 2011 at 11:05 a.m.
pammi said...

So are they protesting the current unemployment status, or are they angry about Republican fundraising? Because, you know Democrats do the same thing. And isn't there a fund for re-election for the encumbent president, that taxpayers put money in? Some people just are angry. period. use that energy positively. get a job.

October 27, 2011 at 11:10 a.m.
EaTn said...

"sla2010 said...

I would love to know where all these people work who have the time to sit down there and "protest" from 9am-6pm. do they not have jobs? "

I assume you meant this as a joke. About 20% of our working age adults cannot find jobs and another 20% cannot find anything more than part time work. So the answer is they have lots of time, and lot of reasons to be angry. Anybody who thinks otherwise should have to walk in their shoes. They are not part of the 1% wealthy nor part of the 52% who are lucky enough to have a job that pays well enough to be taxed.

October 27, 2011 at 11:24 a.m.

So misguided.

Some are getting paid $10 an hour, union wages, in other cities.

October 27, 2011 at 11:29 a.m.
Onceuponatime said...

The occupy movement is just that about jobs and unfair corporate tax breaks. Pammi, most of these people would be more than happy to get a job but are unable to find one or they are overqualified/underqualified etc. For example my father is 44 has numerous certifications in everything from abestos removal to hazmat. He is also a certified truck driver, has over 20 years of award winning management experience, professionally trained in opera and fine arts but since he got laid off 3+ years ago no one will hire him because he is slightly overweight (he even lost over 80 pounds to try to find a job) and diabetic. He is overqualified according to most jobs he applies for. He doesn't care if he makes $7.25 flipping burgers it would be money that his family doesn't currently have but no one will hire him. He has applied for everything from janitor to manager for almost every company in Chattanooga. That is what the Occupy movement is about. Get real people jobs, get this economy fixed, and quit lining your own pockets. Tax the rich don't tax the poor to pay the rich.

October 27, 2011 at 11:31 a.m.

Chattanooga is nothing more than a republican brothel! To be honest all of Tennessee is.

October 27, 2011 at 11:40 a.m.
holdout said...

Unable to find a job? Lowes on 153 has a huge banner out front for at least the last two weeks looking for workers. It pays better than minimum wage.

October 27, 2011 at 11:40 a.m.
McRand said...

I've certainly had to give this guys view some consideration. It's not an anti-capitalism movement, but an endeavor to curb the greedy over-reaching which eventually robs us all of quality of life.

"I've heard it said best by a Canadian who opined on the OWS and Occupy wherever else it's happening represent the disconnect between Democracy and Capitalism. Capitalism (trying to make profit - which is generally a good thing, unless you are a complete Socialist, in which case I have no time for your argument) has overtaken Democracy (the populace using the vote and elected representatives to determine the course of political action) and this, in general, is what the protesters across the globe are upset about. I've been to Spain (unemployment 20%+, strikes, and austerity measures looming) and London (big protests closing some important landmarks in the center of the city) this week (yes, I'm a capitalist, but also a person who votes regularly) and I can tell you that the protests have nothing to do with Obama, Bush, Reagan, or any of the other icons we tend to blame or credit the current state of things upon. The protests are 100% about the notion that global corporations have more power than the people - that democracy has taken a backseat to capitalism.

It's as simple as this - corporations got a bailout. People, workers, families, and those that made genuine stupid mistakes (took out ill-advised loans they couldn't pay back) on a less grand scale got nothing and furthermore are going to get screwed with a whole bunch of things that will look a lot like a decreased standard of living, lower job security and lower optimism about the future. That is what this is about.

There's no easy solution for this mess now that it has happened, but one can't help but to think idly, because the time has past for action, of how things would be different today if we had instead let the banks suffer greater losses in the short term and temporarily beefed up the safety net so that workers - regular hard workers with or without underwater mortgages and too much credit card debt, wealthy workers who earn the Wall Street average of $300k plus who would have found themselves without jobs, and the less fortunate non-workers who have never and will never be able to fully support themselves (before you get all up in a twist, look at your own extended family - you have relatives who cannot support themselves - they exist) due to lack of desirable skills would have not suffered unduly because of the mistakes banks made and the political power they wield. Continued

October 27, 2011 at 11:47 a.m.
McRand said...

It's as simple as this - corporations got a bailout. People, workers, families, and those that made genuine stupid mistakes (took out ill-advised loans they couldn't pay back) on a less grand scale got nothing and furthermore are going to get screwed with a whole bunch of things that will look a lot like a decreased standard of living, lower job security and lower optimism about the future. That is what this is about.

There's no easy solution for this mess now that it has happened, but one can't help but to think idly, because the time has past for action, of how things would be different today if we had instead let the banks suffer greater losses in the short term and temporarily beefed up the safety net so that workers - regular hard workers with or without underwater mortgages and too much credit card debt, wealthy workers who earn the Wall Street average of $300k plus who would have found themselves without jobs, and the less fortunate non-workers who have never and will never be able to fully support themselves (before you get all up in a twist, look at your own extended family - you have relatives who cannot support themselves - they exist) due to lack of desirable skills would have not suffered unduly because of the mistakes banks made and the political power they wield.

The result of capitalism over democracy is what we are living through today. The fact that we (well, some of us) are willing to sacrifice the environment, our own health, our own lives (living to work instead of working to live) and now our own future, our children's future and all of our optimism only proves that we put capitalism above democracy and above people - not just in America, but across all of the developed world. $700 billion (the part of the bailout they're telling us about) divided by the population of the US 350 million is $2k per person in your house. That would be a 7% pay increase per capital in the US for the last year. Would things be different today if the entire nation got a 7% pay raise (or a 20% tax decrease - pick your poison) instead of a bailout to a couple of banks that proved their executives couldn't run a bank? That's an example of capitalism overtaking democracy. We didn't get to vote on that bailout. Our leaders decided it. Our leaders might perhaps not have our best interests at stake. Perhaps this is what the problem is."

J. Gray posted on masslive.com

Preview comment

October 27, 2011 at 11:48 a.m.
sla2010 said...

EaTN- no joking intended. I went to college, i did the four year degree and graduated with that oh ill find a good job now. Well ya know what? No there are no jobs but you have to take what you find, sure I am not in the line of work I want to be in for the rest of my life, but some income is better than none right now and I have a family to take care of so I really did not have a choice. So if they are angry,I get that but take one of those jobs that are on the job boards I look at everday and work it till something better comes along. Because thats what I am having to do right now! I am not a part of the 1% wealthy and never will be, my husband and I both work an average of 50 hours a week to make it, but at this point its the best we have so we have to do it. A job is a job regardless of what it is doing or how much you make in todays time.

October 27, 2011 at 11:53 a.m.
jsgood35 said...

Stop bitchin at wealthy people. That is a tired, weak, covetous argument.

October 27, 2011 at noon
fedup350 said...

Leave it to ammestusaf84 o bring up race. He does that n all of his posts. He is the biggest racist poster on here. What an idiot! Further more, the "occupy" crowd have no credibilty at all by only protesting republicans. Democrats are just as bad if not worse. Go protest obama or the democrats you bunch of hypocrites.

October 27, 2011 at 12:05 p.m.
eeeeeek said...

Hey Boehner, Where are the jobs?

October 27, 2011 at 12:12 p.m.
hycland said...

i kinda support these people BUT i have to work for a living to support my family-- who is paying to keep these people up?

October 27, 2011 at 1:03 p.m.
Jack_Dennis said...

To EaTn @ 11:24 Are you striving for the dumbest post of the day?

October 27, 2011 at 1:06 p.m.
newhome33 said...

Well said "sla2010".....also part of the working crowd who has to work more than a 40hr a week to make ends meet...a four year college degree and working on a masters....maybe not working in my field of specialty, but I have to work to put food on the table and clothes on the kids backs....can't just sit around and wait for it to fall out of a tree...something is better than nothing...

October 27, 2011 at 1:30 p.m.
potcat said...

Need to occupy the Justice Dept. and the Treasury,and White House. Those are the ones who let them get by, no arrest and give them all the money and don't make them account for one penny of it.

October 27, 2011 at 1:34 p.m.
Gump said...

sla2010: Your story is as much a reason the Occupy movement exists as anything. You should not have to work 50 hours a week just to get by. You should not have to struggle when the 1% (or, I should say, the 0.1%) is making record billions after trashing the economy.

October 27, 2011 at 2:24 p.m.
zackass said...

After 19 consecutive years of liberal spendthrift administrations (every one since Reagan) the chickens are coming home to roost. The US Government is flat broke and the economy is on its back regardless of what the stock markets are signaling at the moment. If the people who are receiving transfer payments from the government and the workers (federal, state and local) show up and vote for Democratic candidates next November, nothing is going to change, and things will be much worse that they are today.

October 27, 2011 at 2:33 p.m.
Rickaroo said...

You otherwise educated people (I use that term loosely in your case) who take some manner of sick pride in the fact that you accept menial, low-paying jobs and no benefits are as much a part of the problem as the 1%. That is nothing to be proud of. Sure, we all gotta do what we gotta do in tough times, but if we want to fix the problem, we have to acknowledge the source of it and not just keep our noses to the grindstone and meekly accept it. You are the blind and willing sheep who do the bidding of your masters and you think there is something noble about swallowing the swill that they force-feed you. Idiots. They wrecked this economy and got away scot-free and you not only allow it to happen, you just go on ecouraging it and praising the crooks who continue to screw us. You are pitiful lost souls who don't even know when you're being screwed.

October 27, 2011 at 2:48 p.m.
Lightnup said...

Gump said: "You should not have to work 50 hours a week just to get by."

Says who? Who the hell are you to decide how many hours someone "should" work to get by? People "should" work as many hours as it takes, whether that's 20 hours or 80 hours. There is no right to low hours, no guarantee that you shouldn't have to work beyond a certain number of hours to get by.

Who decides what "getting by" is? Getting by is different for everybody based on lifestyle choices, number of family members, where someone lives, etc. For some people, having cable with HBO is a necessity for "getting by." For others, it's not. (It's not for me). So the number of hours somebody "should" work to get by is whatever number of hours it takes for them to get by. There are no "shoulds." That's the problem with liberals who put everyone into groups with "shoulds." Just like unions - that machine operator "should" only punch out 7 widgets per minute (which means, he WON'T work more than that). Everybody is an individual and needs to do what it takes, not depend on some arbitrary measure and whine just because they have to do more than somebody else does.

October 27, 2011 at 2:53 p.m.
obama4president said...

Well said, Rickaroo.

October 27, 2011 at 3 p.m.
knightboy said...

This is the END. When we wake-up waiting in line for our ration of toilet paper then shall we all be more enlightened. FREEEEEDOM!!!!!

October 27, 2011 at 3:29 p.m.
sla2010 said...

Rickaroo- I work the way I do to maintain the lifestyle that I am used to. And I can also guarantee you my husband and I work for two of the best paying benefits and incentive companies in town, and I can also guarantee you I will not be "blind" to anything, I am continuing my education to masters as well is my husband in the fast growing company he works for. I live my life to make myself better and my family better not to sit around and waste my time taking crap off someone else in as you said minimal paying job, if I wanted to do that I would have saved my 80,000+ on college and sat at home,

October 27, 2011 at 3:46 p.m.
EaTn said...

zackass said.....After 19 consecutive years of liberal spendthrift administrations (every one since Reagan) the chickens are coming home to roost.

Uh, did you sleep throught the eight years of Bush's major deficit spending?

hycland said..i kinda support these people BUT i have to work for a living to support my family-- who is paying to keep these people up?

Yeah, they would like to have jobs that would pay for a living also.

Jack_Dennis said...

To EaTn @ 11:24 Are you striving for the dumbest post of the day?

No, kida looks like you beat me out.

October 27, 2011 at 4:17 p.m.
Momus said...

The top 1%'s wealth has increased by 275% in the last thrity years while the bottom 99% has only increase by 40%. (that's 99-50%) The rest of us fight amoung ourselves on TFP.

October 27, 2011 at 4:20 p.m.
EaTn said...

The next worse thing than being unemployed like 20% of our population, are the ones who are lucky enough to have jobs but too dumb to realize that in a moment's notice they could be in the ranks of the unemployed trying find a job to support a family. It's easy to criticize unless you happen to be one of them.

October 27, 2011 at 4:25 p.m.
sla2010 said...

Actually have been one of them. That's what makes me all the more thankful to find what I did when I did.

October 27, 2011 at 4:28 p.m.
riverman said...

Uh not quite Illusion of Democracy, you Democrats can have the cesspool that is downtown Memphis.

And by the way, we don't live in a Democracy, you should change your title to Illusion of a Representative Republic.

October 27, 2011 at 4:38 p.m.
steve_smith said...

If I agreed to give you $10,000 but I also decided to give a wealthy man $1,000,000 wouldn't you be better off than before I gave you the $10,000?

It seems to me some people have an overdeveloped sense of "fairness" and entitlement to have what other folks have. The fact that "poor" people today live like kings compared to just 100 years ago is lost on them. They would rather everyone have the same even if their relative positions would suffer.

Yes it's true rich people have advantages. Yes it's true poor people have fewer opportunities. Yes the government picks winners and losers. The fix is not to have the government pick different winners and losers, but rather get the government out of the business of deciding who gets to be successful.

If everything just seems a little too complicated to discern the right philosophy, look at the tone of the comments above. If you want to have a defeatist attitude, take on the defeatist tone of rickaroo. If poison and evil and cynicism are for you, drink deeply from the fountain of jealousy, laziness and sarcasm. But if you want better for your children, roll up your sleeves and work for them. The American Dream isn't some socialist utopia where you chop off a rich man at the knees. Its a dream where you take pride in providing for yourself and where you build the foundation for the lives of your children.

But if you'd rather defecate on a park bench and beat on a drum all day. Go ahead. It's a free country . . . at least for a little while longer.

October 27, 2011 at 6:51 p.m.
dave said...

Yes...my grandson...who is one of the unemployed protesters...is all up in arms. I pointed out to him a sign at Hobby Lobby offering jobs @ $11.00 an hour. to which he turned up his nose. You have to WANNA work...I think most of these guys don't know what they want..they just want to be MAD about what ever their friends told them they should be mad about. I think it is a CROCK.of you know what!

October 27, 2011 at 9:43 p.m.
Joyanna said...

It is so tiresome to explain the same thing over and over again. Talk about "lazy hippies"--you readers are too lazy to read the news or you would know what the Occupy movement is about. First, ever occur to you that people get days off, PTO, do shift work, etc., and that's how they can be downtown on a weekday? Yeah, people who'd burn their vacation time to make the world a better place for YOU. I know, hard to believe. Next, news flash: Since 1980, Congress has been dismantling legislation that was put into place after the Great Depression, legislation that was designed to bring stability to financial markets but which prevented greedy elites from making scandalous wealth. So you deregulate, 1% run a Ponzi scheme on the rest of us and get ridiculously rich, and when the house of cards collapses, you blame the victims.

It took Congress and the oligarchy 30 years to completely destroy our economy. Let's give the Occupy movement at least a few weeks to come up with some solutions, o.k.? And while you're sitting on your backside criticizing them, try working on your propaganda rhetoric. You're recycling Vietnam Era slogans and thinking: hippies, unemployed, pot smoking, rich college kids--did I leave anything out? At least come up some 21st century slander. And you might go occupy some slums yourself, hypocrites--I'd pay good money to watch THAT. Now, who's lazy?

October 27, 2011 at 9:57 p.m.
Lightnup said...

Joyanna wrote: "You're recycling Vietnam Era slogans and thinking: hippies, unemployed, pot smoking, rich college kids--did I leave anything out? At least come up some 21st century slander."

Fine. How about pot smoking, iphone carrying, laptop using, iPad reading, tweeting, totally out-of-touch-with-the-real-world, unemployed spoiled rich lazy college kids.

Are you happy now?

October 27, 2011 at 10:17 p.m.
Lightnup said...

@steve_smith re: your 6:51 post.... well said.

October 27, 2011 at 10:19 p.m.
maryjanicep said...

Most of us better pray occupy wall st. is successful as the average joe in U.S. is being screwed royally by big money. If you people can't see it you been brainwashed by fox so called news.

October 27, 2011 at 10:28 p.m.
chatoccupied said...

Are the wealthy "job creators" taking their tax cuts and creating jobs, or just using it to buy politicians who pledge to keep their taxes low? These tax cuts Boehner and Fleischmann love supposedly create jobs. Why is unemployment at 9.1% with the tax cuts still in place? Maybe it's because the 1% are using the money to pay $10,000 for a table near Boehner at a fundraiser. The fundraiser is apparently payback for Fleischmann's promise to vote with Boehner on the debt ceiling. More of our government for sale. I understand why the 1% would vote for Fleischmann. I just don't understand why anyone else would.

October 28, 2011 at 9:47 a.m.
please login to post a comment

videos »         

photos »         

e-edition »

advertisement
advertisement

Find a Business

400 East 11th St., Chattanooga, TN 37403
General Information (423) 756-6900
Copyright, Permissions, Terms & Conditions, Privacy Policy, Ethics policy - Copyright ©2014, Chattanooga Publishing Company, Inc. All rights reserved.
This document may not be reprinted without the express written permission of Chattanooga Publishing Company, Inc.