What Demonstrators Were Getting at with the Amazon/CIA Protest

Comments

2
Very easy to get this confused with the "anti gentrification" protest on Capitol Hill. Seems to be the same three people from the Black Orchid Collective.
3
definitely at least 9 people yesterday, more than 3 people in the photo above, no evidence BOC has spearheaded either of these campaigns, though they may be involved.
4
These guys should try wearing masks and blocking buses in Chicago. Things would go differently.
5
9 people? Will the Revolution be televised?

Good to see Branden's friends gave him a tip off. If this is a 'conversation' it's the type you see on the bus when someone is talking to themselves about drones spying on them.
6
What conversation is this supposed to be starting?
7
Mass transit is a tool of the man, man!
8
Harassing the person walking their dog is obnoxious. I get that these people are trying to start a conversation. That conversation seems to be "Jesus Christ that's stupid" "Yeah it is"
9
This might come as a shock to you, but no one takes political statements printed in Comic Sans seriously.
10
this just in: if you're an american taxpayer, you're helping the cia.
11
No need for "private cloud" to have nefarious connotations. It is simply a collection of back end servers hosting web sites for people in the organization that are accessible only by well-authenticated Windows based security or claims based authentication. The CIA would actually do better by just purchasing Microsoft's "Windows Azure Pack" - a kit, so to speak, for making your own private cloud with an administrative and tenant portals.
12
The idiots are at it again.
13
Death From Above™ , powered by Amazon.
14
I was on that streetcar in the top photo. While I am sympathetic to their message and am alarmed by Amazon's business ties to the CIA, the streetcar was actually mostly filled with workers from Fred Hutch, where I work, an we all felt the whole affair was a bit misplaced.
15
@1 because you've read Greenwald and scahill's reporting and found evidence they did not cover?
16
@1, that's okay, nobody is forcing you to buy the facts. You can believe anything you want, real or imagined.
17
@14 It's completely misplaced. These fools, and the others protesting Microsoft buses, do not know how to throw a fucking protest, or even understand who they SHOULD be protesting.
18
The last thing these kind of tactics make me want to do is learn about whatever cause these folks are on about. Quite the opposite.
19
I agree with 14, stopping a streetcar going to Fred Hutch, I'm having a difficult time supporting that action.

Because cancer patients are in on it?
Nurses?
Doctors?

Time for cow catchers on streetcars.
20
A generation ago, a decent middle-class job got you a 3-bedroom house and a car. Now an "elite" tech worker gets a 700sf studio and rides a vanpool to work, and it's "check your privilege" time.

So, this is solidarity? Fuck anybody fortunate enough to still have a decent job?
22
Isn't it AMAzon since clearly they conspired with the American Medical AssoCIAtion and Obamacare to insure that medical textbooks are all "Kindlized"?
23
UH, dear protestors, I don’t want the facts to get in the way of your unique cognitive abilities, BUT, the uses of Meta data for drone strikes, as well as the Amazon CIA cloud build are certainly not dark secrets just now coming to light. For instance, there was an epic and widely reported battle between Big Blue (IBM) and AWS (Amazon Web Services) for the 600 million dollar spy agency deal. AWS was awarded the contract in February 2013. Big Blue filed a complaint with the GAO (Government Accountability Office). The GAO sided with IBM, and recommended that the CIA reopen the bidding process because it had “failed to sufficiently evaluate price.” Big Blue’s bid was cheaper.
The rebid request prompted Amazon to file suit in the US Court of Federal Claims. In October 2013, Judge Thomas Wheeler sided with Amazon and shut down the rebidding process, and IBM capitulated: “In light of the government’s recent submissions emphasizing its need to move forward on the contract, IBM has withdrawn its motion,” reads a statement provided by IBM. “IBM maintains its position that the [Government Accountability Office's] findings were appropriate.” The PDF of the ruling is readily available:
http://regmedia.co.uk/2013/11/08/amazon_…
The deal was significant, also, because it represented a break between Big Blue and the Feds. In the past, it was sort of an assumption that IBM always snagged these types of Military/Industrial Complex builds. Amazon has emerged as a new heavyweight player in this lucrative field.
As far as Meta data being used to target drone strikes, check out Rachel Maddow’s brilliant 2012 book, Drift, The Unmooring of the American Military. She outlines how “the CIA has turned into a branch of the military that does not report to the Armed Services Committee.” She carefully details the two drone programs that we run, that of the Air Force and that of the CIA. Meta data is widely used by the CIA in their drone program.
I don’t know if these public transportation stopping protestors think that they have stumbled onto a hidden truth, or if they are simply trying to bring well documented facts to light. In either case, perhaps they should research more thoroughly just what exactly they are up against, and change tactics if they have any hope of getting their message (?) out in a cohesive fashion. After all, they are tangling with The Complex. Good luck with that.
24
I can see the headline now: "Asshat in mask gets rachel corried by SLUT"
25
How have so many people commenting missed the point that this has 0 to do with gentrification? It seems like these guys (if not the same) got message hijacked by the protests yesterday, despite not having particularly similar messages...

The only similarity is that they both briefly stopped a vehicle multiple people were counting on for getting to work, but lots of people are just copypastaing their arguments against the first for this second group.
26
hey Kiley; its funny that 99% of your readers would probably vote in favor of imprisoning these troublemakers. 15 years ago it would of been more like 20%. Kinda proves the point of the anti-growth protesters; Just because we have money doesn't mean things aren't going down hill.
27
@25
And the same smiley face on both their leaflets. I'm sure that is just a coincidence though.
28
@14, did you consider pulling the emergency door release and walking the whopping six remaining blocks to your workplace?
29
Amazon? I thought those dipshits were blocking Microsoft buses.
30
@20, much of the country has affordable housing, check Eastern Washington, Omak, Okanogan, etc. Do you seriously think you should be able to afford a three bedroom house in the limited real estate of Seattle for beans?
31
My amazon friends don't help the CIA. They maintain and monitor advertisement delivery for Kindles.
32
In 50 years these same people will vote for anti-robosexual amendments.
33
(shameless copypaste:)you blocked my trip to amazon this morning! fuck yemeni families, and the cia metadatacenter! i needed to get to work, and just because of that i will now put my full backing behind the metadatacenter, and all of amazons cooperation with the US intelligence agencies.

"i would have totally been with the whole "why are us corporate interests, and US government colluding?" but you made me 5 minutes late, and i missed our morning stretches!!!"

how dare you inconvenience me!?

/sarcasm
34
@33
If you're going to troll, you can't be drunk when you do it.
35
@20: Same tactic, different issue. Yesterday, Microsoft's contribution to gentrification. Today, Amazon's sales of equipment for use spying on everyone and targetting people for death by the U.S. government's extrajudicial assassination drones.
36
Heres a thought, maybe AMAZON IS the CIA. I mean, really what better cover to know what everyone is doing and thinking by their reading, viewing and even food purchases, than masking yourself as a capitalist global distributor of goods and services and no one to know any different. Bwahahaha - "Luke, "I" am your father!"
37
it's refreshing to see that you guys haven't bought into that whole global warming scam [you had me worried there for a bit]. These stinking luddites are trying to to take us back to 2012; theyre basically saying "Let's try calling it good and put a cap on it for a while."
38
@28 the "emergency door release"? I think you've been watching too many train movies. No, the streetcar was stopped, and the driver opened the doors and let everyone out.
39
@33 I think you're on to something. The very best way to get people behind your cause is to inconvenience them! In fact, the more horribly you treat them, the more they are likely to jump on our bandwagon! It's pure genius!

And hell, if they question your tactics you can just treat them like they are basically siding with your enemy and bam! Even more support! With all these people falling over themselves to join your protest, validating your organizing strategy as simply the best evah, you'll have the CIA booted out of Amazon in no time.

And to imagine how much you will accomplish, just by stopping a streetcar for 10 minutes. Solidarity through inconvenience! Look out world!
40
Yes yes yes. We get it. You're pissed off about Things that are Very Important, protesters. You may even have valid points somewhere in that mess but honestly you're pissing me off and making me late such that I'm really not interested in reading your hyperbolic BS. Your actions don't put me in a very receptive mood. From what I heard this morning, many of the others effected by your actions feel about the same.

Now the majority of people you were trying to reach are talking about how you're idiots at worst or illogical at best.

The conversation has started. Mission accomplished.
41
So much, "But I love Amazon this can't be so" going on in this thread. Anyone thinking a company can have prices that low and not be a douchebag doesn't know capitalism at all.
42
Yes, @38, the emergency door release. It's right there above and adjacent to every single door on every single trolley or subway car on the planet.

For you see, you implied that you were stuck in some way on the streetcar, as if the driver had refused to open the doors on the grounds that he wasn't at a platform. If that had been the case -- which apparently it was not -- you could easily have released yourself from the vehicle and continued on your way.

Given that the protesters chose to symbolically block a streetcar to nowhere, and that they stopped you less than a 10-minute walk from the end of the line, I presume you went along your merry way and continued to give just as few fucks as you would have given had you not been "inconvenienced" at all.
43
@43 Don't be silly. I implied no such thing as being stuck in the streetcar, you can read any ridiculous thing you want into what I wrote but that doesn't mean it's true.

But it is true, inconveniencing me did not, in fact, make me care any more than I did before the protesters blocked the line. And it is in that truth I think there is a valuable lesson, one that I have said over and over on this thread but you and yours seem to be incapable of reading (and instead reading things I didn't actually say): inconveniencing people is not going to make them join your cause. That is a simple fact of human nature and I find it mind boggling you don't understand it. Not me, and not anyone else.

Now go ahead and keep blocking traffic to spread your message, and watch as each time you do so people listen to you less and less. You are your own worst enemy here, and in the face of your own self-righteousness, are clearly clueless as to how to bring any sympathy to your cause. Too bad for you, but you can't say nobody warned you.