There are two components of what the Occupy Movement must do. The first component is coming into internal agreement about what it demands, and being somewhat secure that these demands will fix the system. The second component, to be addressed separately is the strategy to ensure that these demands will be met.
Here is my opinion of what the movement should demand, in order of precedence:
1. Have congress pass a constitutional amendment to revoke the Citizen's United Decision and reinstate limits on campaign contributions. We can't have a real democracy with all this lobbying money controlling everything.
2. After this, enact legistlation to further limit corporations' abilities to lobby via NGO's and direct campaign contributions. The system was already broken before the Citizen's United Decision, and we need to bring things to where they should be, not where they were. We need to analyze exactly how the corporations have gotten around regulations in the past, and make sure they are severly limited in their actions.
3. Raise the capital gains tax. If the top 400 wealth holders earn the majority of their gains not through income but rather through the growth of assets, we need to ensure they are taxed at the same rate the rest of the population is. Let's raise the capital gains tax from 15% to 28% where they were in the Reagan era.
4. A .5% transaction tax on the NYSE, NASDAQ, CBOE, and the CSE. The London Stock Exchange has this, and did not suffer the same instability.
5. Reinstatement of Glass-Steagall act.
6. Revoke oil industry subsidies.
7. Cut the defense budget by 50%, removing the US' influence out of Afghanistan and Iraq, withdrawing completely.
8. Grant subsidies and investment for clean energy, including wind and solar generation, as well as electric vehicles.
9. Enact single-payer goverment sponsored healthcare.
10. Equalize the production playing field by demanding that foreign trading partners such as China have equal labor and health rights for its workers. We need to remove the competitive advantage they have over us in that they exploit their labor. This will prevent them from having artificial low production costs, and will increase local production.
11. We need a democratically run media system separate from the corporate media system, that has equal access. Something similar to KPFK. The issue is that corporate media is running the minds of the public at large and turning their interests against themselves.
12. Re-enact commonsense environmental legislation.
13. Redirect funds to our educational system that have been chipped away.
These demands will be extremely hard to meet, and for that, the movement needs to reach into all members of society and bring them together for this task. Next message - strategy, how do we pull this off?
Thoughts, opinions, contributions?