Wednesday, October 12, 2011


DURING THE PAST FIVE YEARS, while organizing at least half-a-dozen “human banner/hovering helicopter/follow-up postcard” events, I have come into contact with, literally, hundreds of large and small groups that, I believe, constitute “The Bay Area Progressive Movement.”

One thing I have noticed: this stunningly diverse movement has no “center” -- no common means of communication, no physical meeting place, no common voice, not even a recognized common calendar. This diffuse quality gives the movement widespread strength, perhaps, but I think the lack of a center presents definite drawbacks.

With the October 29 human banner event, which I’m planning in partnership with the veteran organizers at The Other 98% (the plan is for 2,000 people to use their bodies to spell out “TAX THE RICH!” in lettering 100 feet tall and 10 feet wide and stretching 700 feet down Ocean Beach in San Francisco -- more details and a signup button at, I am trying to provide a place for a gathering of the tribe. At similar past events, it has proven to be deliciously reaffirming to have a chance to at least SEE each other, to have some fun while issuing a joint statement, and to observe that we are not all lone wolves. We are all in this together.

I envision Oct 29 not as a one-off, but as a stepping stone, or a petri dish from which greater things will sprout. I intend this event to seamlessly set up a similar gathering next October, in the weeks before the presidential election. And from there, an every-year gathering, from which to deliver a message from San Francisco to the world. The rest of the world really does note what the Bay Area thinks and does.

Further, I envision a community-wide online calendar, a progressive coffeehouse, a progressive newspaper. . . so many things. But, while these are all perhaps grandiose future possibilities, which may or may not transpire down the road, for now I’m concentrating on this one step directly ahead, the Oct 29 event.

To that end, I have partnered with the battle-hardened pros Andrew Boyd and John Sellers of The Other 98% (more about them in a future post). I feel like a minor leaguer getting a late-season call-up to the majors. With these guys and their connections, and with you, I think we can definitely make October 29 a day that the whole world sees and hears about -- 2,000 people spelling out “TAX THE RICH!” in San Francisco should reverberate far and wide. All we need now is YOU and 1,999 others to register by Oct 22, and to show up on October 29. (As of Oct 13, we have 127 signed up.)

Won’t you please join us? Details at, (page still under construction, but signup function is working).


I’ve been making daily visits to OccupySF (going strong at 101 Market Street, at Main) or the newly created Occupy Oakland site -- yesterday afternoon I counted 50 tents on the lawn in front of Oakland City Hall. Going strong. All support appreciated.


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