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Wednesday, April 19, 2000 FULL SHOW | HEADLINES | PREVIOUS: Diamonds Are a War’s Best Friend: The Trade of...
2000-04-19

Sounds From the Battle After Seattle

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Thousands of protesters from all over the world shut down the nation’s capital over the past few days, protesting the World Bank and IMF’s policies toward developing nations, which they say have sunk these countries into deeper poverty. From the young to the old, from anti-sweatshop college students to Latin American trade unionists, from African environmentalists to Asian activists, the protesters blocked roadways to the World Bank and the IMF as the two institutions held their annual spring meetings. Over 1,000 people were arrested in the last four days. [includes rush transcript]

Today, a chronicle of the sounds from the Battle After Seattle.

Tape:

  • Sounds from the Battle after Seattle, gathered by Amy Goodman and Maria Carrion.

Transcript

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: We move in now to our sounds of the street from the Battle after Seattle over the last weekend, actually, in a build-up of the last few weeks in Washington, D.C. Tens of thousands of people took to the streets. They were protesting the prison-industrial complex in this country. They were protesting the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. These two international financial institutions were having major meetings in Washington. The protesters hoped to close those meetings.

While they didn’t succeed in doing that, they did succeed in being heard around the world and making that link of corporate globalization and the critique of it from Seattle and the successful closing of the millennium round of the World Trade Organization to Washington, D.C.

They say next they’re taking their protests to Los Angeles to the Democratic Convention and to Philadelphia, the Republican Convention, and they’re taking these protests to shareholder meetings around the world. This is the "Sounds of the Battle after Seattle."

CROWD: This is what democracy sounds like, this is what democracy sounds like, this is what democracy sounds like, this is what democracy sounds like, this is what democracy sounds like.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: They just pushed down a female protester onto the ground. They’re pushing her. They’re hitting her. They’re hitting her, pushing her into the street. They’re pushing her into the street with a baton. What’s the badge number? Get the badge number.

POLICE OFFICER: Those people who would decide that they’re going to take the law into their own hands in different ways, then we have an obligation to suppress that, only to suppress it. You notice that we’re not still up there beating them?

CROWD: IMF, what do you say? How many kids did you kill today? IMF, what do you say? How many kids did you kill today? IMF, what do you say? How many kids did you kill today?

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: We blocked off — successfully blocked off and kept delegates from going down three entrances into Lafayette Park.

CROWD: Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets!

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: One cluster of the activists with the Mobilization for Global Justice have taken control of the intersection peacefully by locking themselves together.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Don’t let them push you in!

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I’m here because I passionately believe that global capitalism is destroying our planet, and it’s destroying communities.

CROWD: People of the South, kick the World Bank out! People of the South, kick the World Bank out! People of the South, kick the World Bank out!

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: We’re here in downtown Washington, D.C., asserting some people power, showing that regular people can turn around history.

CROWD: Si se puede! Si se puede!

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: It’s pretty tense, but it’s a sunny day, and revolution is in the air.

BILLIONAIRE FOR BUSH — OR GORE: We’re the billionaires for Bush — or Gore, it doesn’t really matter. We’ve bought them both. We believe that economic inequality is not growing fast enough and that’s why we say, "More bank, less world! More bank, less world! More bank, less world!"

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: World Bank is not too good for the farmers. Farmers are the poorest people all over the world, and the land is — people borrow for get a little bit of money, and they’re taking it away from them.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: There was a bus of police in riot gear that pulled up to one of the intersections that was barricaded, and police jumped out in full riot gear with their batons raised. They did not say one word to one protester. They did not ask anyone to clear the area. They just charged at people and began swinging their batons and hitting people. They hit one gentleman in the face, broke his nose. They hit another woman and pushed her over people. There was not a word said by the police to protesters. No one asked to clear the area, no one’s under arrest, nothing. They just started beating people with their batons.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: We’re sitting in the middle of an intersection getting ready to block whoever may come through here. There’s many protesters sitting down here. It appears that we’ll be tear-gassed. Who knows? Maybe possible arrest. Everyone’s staying calm. Everyone’s been instructed to go to the sides for medics. Unity is very strong, stronger than ever, and there’s no way they’re going to defeat us.

CROWD: Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets!

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: I’m here with Community Television of Santa Cruz County, just covering it for a show called Voices from the Village, as well as just shooting some of my own footage to combine with WTO footage to, you know, document this, to bear witness, to document what’s going on and the injustices that are happening here.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Sagauli is a city in India where the World Bank has sponsored, paid for a power plant that’s putting toxic ash throughout those neighborhoods. It’s yet another project that the World Bank has funded.

REPORTER: I’m interviewing an IMF official. How do you expect me to write a book about the IMF if I don’t interview people who are involved in running the IMF? I have an appointment with him now.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Sorry.

REPORTER: OK. So, you consider blocking a legitimate journalist with the Washington Post

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: No one goes in, and no one goes out.

REPORTER: OK, well, just so you understand what you’re doing. I’m going there to write a book about the IMF.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I’m sure that someone might question the legitimacy of Washington Post press anyway. It’s corporate-owned.

REPORTER: The stupidity of your statement is reflected in the stupidity of what you’re saying.

SAMANTHA McALLISTER: We’re out here to protest the polices of IMF and the World Bank.

AMY GOODMAN: And what [inaudible]

SAMANTHA McALLISTER: Symbolic of all the stripping away of natural resources and economic growth and power of people around the world.

AMY GOODMAN: What have you written across your chest and back?

SAMANTHA McALLISTER: I believe it says, "IMF takes the shirt off my back."

AMY GOODMAN: What’s your name and where’re you from?

SAMANTHA McALLISTER: Samantha McAllister from Seattle.

AMY GOODMAN: What’s your name?

CHLOE: My name’s Chloe.

AMY GOODMAN: And where are you from?

CHLOE: From Massachusetts.

AMY GOODMAN: And what happened?

CHLOE: Well, we were standing here, just like this, and a cop comes up, and I thought he was going to say something, and he just tried to push his way through. And when he couldn’t get through, he took out his nightstick, and he just kinda hit me with it. That’s pretty much it.

AMY GOODMAN: How old are you?

CHLOE: Seventeen.

AMY GOODMAN: Did he say anything before he hit you?

CHLOE: No, he didn’t say anything to me at any time.

GUERILLA GARDENER: We’re guerilla gardeners. We gardening in solidarity with Central American farmers who are losing their land to international debt.

MARIA CARRION: And where are you? Where are we located right now?

GUERILLA GARDENER: We are located in Washington, D.C., right in front of the White House. We are planting squash and organic carrots, because we’re taking back the people’s land that the people deserve, not the government bureaucrats and the international loan sharks.

MARIA CARRION: So you are growing — you are planting organic vegetables in Lafayette Park in front of the White House?

GUERILLA GARDENER: That’s correct. We can see the White House right in front of us. And we’re very proud to be taking back this land for the people, and hopefully, sometime this fall, we’ll be harvesting squash and carrots around the first frost, if all goes well.

WALDEN BELLO: Yes. I’m Waldon Bello. I’m executive director of Focus on the Global South, and I’ve been —

AMY GOODMAN: In where?

WALDEN BELLO: In Thailand. And I’ve come here to join the protests. We’ve been working at this issue for twenty years, and it’s great that there are thousands here now who are rallying to demand the shutting down of the World Bank and the IMF.

AMY GOODMAN: Why? Why do you think it’s so important to completely shut them down?

WALDEN BELLO: Well, I think one is, for today, it’s a very important symbolic event to shut down the Bank and the Fund, because their normal routine of operations has been very damaging for countries in the South. But beyond that, I think that, you know, that a lot of people here who have looked at the two institutions are for permanently abolishing them, because despite different efforts at rhetorical reform, the basic World Bank and IMF strategies that promote stagnation and are anti-growth and are poverty-creating are still the same.

So these two institutions feel rather besieged at this point, because the Meltzer Commission, which was a commission that was commissioned by the US Congress to look at the performance of the IMF and the World Bank, now has endorsed many of the critiques that many progressives had been making about these two institutions. And that commission has asked for downsizing the Bank and the Fund at a time that the Bank and the Fund has lost a lot of legitimacy among quite, you know, large numbers of people in the world.

So these two institutions are now fighting for their life, and it is very important to be able to underline the fact that it’s very hard to reform them. It is, in fact, to establish other institutions built on new principles in their place. The core of the strategies, still the core of liberalization, deregulation and privatization, that’s the core of the strategy, this is the problem, because on the one hand you have a great PR exercise by Jim Wolfensohn, the President of the Bank, but in reality there’s been no change. And this is the same way that McNamara said that he was reforming that Bank along anti-poverty lines, basic needs in the 1970s. So you now have a monolithic Jurassic institution, that’s 10,000 employees, the most highly paid in the world, really not effectively doing its job.

And my sense is that you have the problem really is in the paradigm of development that the Bank has, as well as the institutional direction that the Bank has followed, as well the reason that it’s very sensitive and very responsive to the needs of the G7 countries. So for all of those reasons, it would not do to reform this institution. If you really want to end poverty, I think you’ve got to get the Bank out of it, devolve the anti-poverty function to local and regional agencies, including some of the regional banks, because they have a far more effective way of addressing poverty, rather than a distant institution in Washington.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: This is a group of puppeteers that are from all over the country, and they call themselves the Puppetistas and other names, but this is the structural adjustment pulverizer. It’s eating up landscapes and communities all around, and so we feed these communities into the machine in the front, and what you see that comes out is —

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Suburban sprawl.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Yep, suburban sprawl and strip malls and factories.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Disrupted communities.

MARIA CARRION: What are you particularly dressed up as?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Well, I’m a chainsaw. I help cut down all the forests.

NAGINI PRASAD: Yeah, my name’s Nagini Prasad. We’re here for two reasons. One is we want to get Ogden out of Maheshwar Dam in the Narmada Valley of India, and the other thing is we want to bring justice to the victims of Union Carbide’s disaster in Bhopal that committed genocide, corporate manslaughter, and we want to give them justice. We want to bring Warren Anderson to justice, and that’s why we’re here today, to say "Save the Narmada, get Ogden out of India, and justice to the victims of Union Carbide."

AMY GOODMAN: What’s Ogden?

NAGINI PRASAD: Ogden Corporation is a US-based corporation that has many businesses in power, entertainment, waste energy. They currently have a 49% equity stake in the Maheshwar Dam in India, and this is a recent — during Bill Clinton’s visit to India. And we basically want them out of Maheshwar.

AMY GOODMAN: Where is Maheshwar, and what’s the problem with it?

NAGINI PRASAD: Maheshwar Dam is in the state of Madhya Pradesh in India, upstream from the more well-known Sardar Sarovar Dam, which was financed by the World Bank. The problem is that it will displace about 35,000 people who live along the river, whose livelihoods and lives are affected by the dam, and there’s no environmental — to my knowledge, there’s no environmental assessment, and Ogden, I think, visited the dam site once. I think that was just either just before or just after the signing of the agreement, despite repeated written requests by the people of the area to come and visit and see what they’re going to do if they finance the dam and the destruction that it will cause.

NELL GEISER: Nell Geiser from Boulder, Colorado.

AMY GOODMAN: How old are you?

NELL GEISER: Sixteen. And we were arrested yesterday. We were taking part in a march to shut down the prison-industrial complex, and there was about 700 people in the march. And we were walking and staying on the sidewalk, and it was a completely peaceful march, and the police stopped us at one point, and then we turned around and were going to start marching back towards Connecticut. And then, when we were marching through this small street or alleyway, the police blockaded us in on both sides and wouldn’t let us out, even though a lot of the people in there weren’t protesters, just wanted to leave, and everyone was willing to disperse and to go out, two by two, you know, if they would let us. And we were trying to leave when they blockaded us in. We were trying to stop the march. And then we were there for about forty-five minutes to an hour. Then they started arresting us one by one, and they put all the adults in school buses, and there was about thirty minors arrested and put in paddy wagons. And we went to —

AMY GOODMAN: They separated you as minors?

NELL GEISER: Yeah.

AMY GOODMAN: They asked each one your age?

NELL GEISER: Yeah. I guess if we looked young, they asked us our age. And then they brought all the adults together. And then they brought us to a detention center and kept us there for about four hours. We got out about midnight last night, and they dropped all the charges against us. The charge was unlawful assembly, and I guess they figured since it was an unlawful arrest that they should probably drop the unlawful assembly charge.

AMY GOODMAN: Some of the sounds of the Battle after Seattle. The protesters by more than 10,000 this past weekend, some estimate more than 20,000 in the streets of Washington, D.C., as well as a legal rally on the Ellipse behind the White House and in front of the Washington Monument. We’re going to continue with these voices when we come back from our break here on Pacifica Radio’s Democracy Now!

[break]

AMY GOODMAN: We go back to the streets of Washington, D.C. this past weekend, where students, young activists, people of faith, farmers, Teamsters, steel workers, and other activists gathered in Washington over this past week, calling for relief of the debt in developing countries, and this past weekend, for closing of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund. In addition to a rally of more than 10,000 people on Sunday attacking the World Bank and the IMF, thousands of people took to the streets, various intersections around the World Bank and the IMF, though the police had pushed out the perimeter to protect those buildings as the annual and semi-annual meetings were taking place, and they, the protesters, tried to stop delegates from moving in. Police used tear gas, they clubbed people, but they also just stood at blockades as the protesters sat at the blockades, sometimes pushed the blockades forward. There were tense moments, and there were moments of jubilation when the police would move back, after thousands would gather at a corner.

CROWD: We’re nonviolent, how about you? We’re nonviolent, how about you? We’re nonviolent, how about you? We’re nonviolent, how about you? We’re nonviolent, how about you? Turn the cameras around! Turn the cameras around! Turn the cameras around!

AMY GOODMAN: How are you feeling?

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: What?

AMY GOODMAN: How are you feeling?

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: A little scared, I don’t think we did anything to deserve this. We’ve just been sitting here peacefully, and here they are putting on their gas masks.

AMY GOODMAN: And just standing at this line, the people in the front row — this is Witness for Peace — have just kneeled down. There are about — well, there are hundreds of people here on this corner, and now the police are moving in in force coming from both directions on Pennsylvania Avenue — we’re quite near the White House — forming a line. They’re putting their riot shields down. Dozens of police are moving in right now. You can hear "Whose streets? Our streets!" behind us with people with all sorts of signs. There are a number of photographers here, people holding cameras, video cameras.

As you heard, they’re not allowing in the journalists, either. Some journalists got press passes, I should say. We didn’t. The World Bank and IMF said they would not allow any community media. Again, I’m going to let you hear what’s happening right here as they give orders.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: If they’re coming in to arrest you, you can go limp with your body. Don’t make it easy for them.

AMY GOODMAN: The police are moving in. They’ve got their riot batons out. They’ve got their shields. And behind them are police in riot gear, even more police in riot gear. So you’ve got the police in the blue shirts, and behind that totally in black. And people now are saying, 'OHM." Can you tell us your name and why you're here and what you’re expecting?

PENNY: My name —- my friends call me Penny. I don’t know really what I’m expecting right now. So -—

AMY GOODMAN: Where are you from?

PENNY: I’m from down South.

AMY GOODMAN: Where?

PENNY: [inaudible]

AMY GOODMAN: And why are you here?

PENNY: I’m here to protest the IMF and the World Bank.

AMY GOODMAN: The police have not given any warnings at this point. All the photographers are lining up in front of the people. Behind them are the police. More and more police are coming in.

Can you tell us why you’re here today, where you’re from?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I’m from Washington, D.C. I’m here to stop the World Bank from oppressing other people. We’re linked with solidarity, linking all the struggles together to bring attention upon the oppression, to try to link up with people all across the world, all the people here in D.C., try to link up and fight oppression the World Bank is putting on foreign people going into their countries and destroying them. The World Bank comes in and gives them these high loans that they can’t pay back.

AMY GOODMAN: OK, this is the scene right now. We’ve got more than a hundred police who are lined up. We’ve got a whole row of cameras and video cameras, a line of people mainly from Witness for Peace who have sat down in front of the police. And then there are a group of anarchists who are here, and the others have asked the anarchists’ banner to be put down, afraid that that will provoke the police.

And behind that is the pig. This is the piggy bank that has flames under it, not actual flames, with people from Philadelphia Act Up that are chained, so they won’t be able to move if anything happens. And then hundreds of people all around.

CROWD: Film the cops! Film the cops! Film the cops! Film the cops! Film the cops! Film the cops! Film the cops!

AMY GOODMAN: And the protesters are chanting, "Film the cops! Film the cops!" They’re saying, "Face the police, not us!" Protesters understand from Seattle and other places that it is the cameras, in some ways, that will protect them. Again, the police are just standing right now, and the protesters, many of them have sat down, and it seems to be, at this point, a stand-off. The people are extremely peaceful. Many have red bandanas over their faces because they’re afraid of tear gas, since tear gas has been used several times before.

Can you tell me your name and why you’re out here?

REBECCA FERRIS: I’m Rebecca Ferris. I’m here because I care about justice in the world. I just retuned from two years in Central America, and I saw the devastation that the IMF and the World Bank do to poor people there and around the world. Babies die every day because of the IMF and the World Bank, and I will not stand for that.

AMY GOODMAN: What are you doing?

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: We have vinegar on bandanas, because it’s going to help protect us from the tear gas, which hopefully they’re not going to use. We’ve done nothing but sitting here peacefully and nonviolently since 5:30 this morning, so we hope that they do not use tear gas on us.

CROWD: Smash the stateless, liberate, acknowledge me or go to hell, another phantom to rebel. Stop, smash the stateless, liberate, acknowledge me or go to hell, another phantom to rebel. Stop, smash the stateless, liberate, acknowledge me or go to hell, another phantom to rebel.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: SOA Watch is concerned with imperialism. We’re concerned about the combination between globalization and militarization of the world, and that is exactly what IMF and World Bank’s agenda is at this time.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Hello, world! Hey, what’s going on, Pacifica?

MARIA CARRION: Could you tell me what’s going on here?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Well, all ahead twelve more feet. OK, all ahead, all ahead, stop, right here, this is it right here.

MARIA CARRION: What is this structure?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: This here is a Trojan cooling tower. The World Bank funds all kind of nuclear projects, and right here we have Michael Marriott, Nuclear Information and Resource Service here. And we want the World Bank and IMF never to fund any nuclear projects again, simple as that, so this here is the Trojan nuke. OK? They always try and sneak nuclear power projects across the world. And right here, we have Michael Marriott, who will tell you all about it. Right there!

MARIA CARRION: Hello, Michael. Tell me a little bit about what you’re doing here today.

MICHAEL MARRIOTT: Well, we’re just trying to point out that the World Bank, contrary to its policies, makes loans that enable the construction and operation of nuclear power plants, and the IMF is supporting continued operation of power plants, for example, in Bulgaria, the Kozloduy complex that the European Union is trying to close.

Well, in the Czech Republic, for example, there’s the Temelin nuclear complex, which is an old Soviet-designed reactor that’s under construction. The World Bank has provided some loans that enabled a Czech utility to divert its own money for the Bank and pay for electrical grid improvements to enable a power plant of that size to be placed there.

In Bulgaria, they have provided loans for various water diversion projects to enable flows of water into the plants and to enable Bulgaria to build a new reactor if it wants to. In addition, in Bulgaria, the IMF went into the country recently — Bulgaria has had some difficult economic times, and I’m not suggesting there shouldn’t be loans to Bulgaria, but the IMF went into the country and talked about economic restructuring, said that, well, we need to keep these nuclear plants open. There are six plants there. Four of them don’t even have containments. They don’t meet any safety standards anywhere in the world, and the European Union has been trying for several years to close them. In fact, it’s a condition for Bulgaria’s entry into the European Union is that these plants be closed, and here you have the IMF saying to keep them open.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I think it’s important to state things in a very visual fashion, and so this is the way to do it. This is made out of old spools and old wood found behind an electronics store yesterday, and so we put it together, painted it up last night, and that’s what we have right here, an old nuclear power plant that says the IMF and the World Bank should not fund anything nuclear in the future, and get into good energy projects, not the bad energy projects that they fund now.

MARIA CARRION: I see that you’re all dolled up. You’re in your tuxedo.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: That’s right, darling, because I think it’s important to treat these demonstrations as formal events. So this is a formal demonstration, so I’m wearing my formal wear tonight. My top hat is at the cleaner’s though.

MARIA CARRION: What does your sign say?

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: My sign says "Spank the Bank!"

MARIA CARRION: What does it look like?

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: The World Bank. It’s a hand that’s open palm to show that we’re nonviolent individuals, and it’s in red, yellow, and black.

ADRIAN: I’m Adrian. I’m from Ecuador.

MARIA CARRION: Why are you here?

ADRIAN: I’m here because the people in my country are born with a debt of $4,000 to the rich people of the World Bank and the IMF.

MARIA CARRION: How much?

ADRIAN: $4,000. Each children that’s born is born with a debt of $4,000. And less than 5% of that is used to our health and to our education. So our people are maintained poor and ignorant, while most of what they do, most of the money they make is going to rich people, to the rich people of these institutions. So that’s why I’m here, to protest against all that greed, you know. I mean, we’re all equal, and we all deserve to have an opportunity, but down there in third world countries, we don’t have opportunity.

CROWD: There’s no meeting today. There are no meetings today. Go home! Go home! Go home! Go home!

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Sure, well, we’ve built this tremendous Trojan horse, about twelve feet high, and it’s kind of a symbol of what IMF loans are. We’ve got corporate shields here. I’m Wal-Mart. We’ve got McDonald’s and Exxon, and Nike, and what we’re doing is we’re walking down the street and jumping out of the horse. The reason that we’re doing this is because, just like the Trojan horse, IMF loans are supposed to look like gifts to countries that are in debt, but in reality it’s ways of kind of inserting our corporations into their economy and making them colonies for our economic system.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Save the Redwoods, Boycott the Gap from California, San Francisco.

MARIA CARRION: Could you describe the poster you have?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Well, Donald Fisher, who owns the Gap, he owns controlling interest in Mendocino Redwood Company. Not only does he exploit child labor, but he also owns — he also clear cuts a lot of Mendocino redwood trees.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I got clubbed on the head by the police.

AMY GOODMAN: You did?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I did, I sure did.

AMY GOODMAN: What happened?

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: I was — we were, about an hour and a half ago, the police brought in a riot squad before this one came here, and the word came through that they were going to break the line to get some of the media through. They grabbed a man next to me, another protester, and started pulling him over, the guy next to me, pulling over top of him, and then somebody grabbed him and tried to hold him back. And the next thing, the clubs started flying, so I got down on my knees, and as the police were dragging this protester right over the top of the guy next to me and I got down, my face was only about a foot from the pavement. I was just looking at the ground, and I looked up and I saw the batons. They were starting to hit people around, nudge people with them, and I just put my head down. The next thing I know, I got a blow, a direct blow right across the skull on the back of the head.

TEAMSTER: I’m a Teamster.

MARIA CARRION: Teamster? And why are you here today?

TEAMSTER: To protest the actions of the IMF and the World Bank. They don’t have any consideration, no democracy. They make decisions based on big money, and not the majority.

MARIA CARRION: As a Teamster, how does that hurt you?

TEAMSTER: It just lowers standards all over the world. We’re concerned about every worker.

MARIA CARRION: And what are you doing here right now? Describe for people on the radio what you’re doing.

TEAMSTER: We’ve linked arms, and we’re blocking the street, trying to keep the IMF delegates from getting through.

MARIA CARRION: Have you been successful so far?

TEAMSTER: Yes.

MARIA CARRION: How many people have tried to stop through and have come through?

TEAMSTER 2: Ten.

MARIA CARRION: Ten people? And what happened to them?

TEAMSTER 2: Well, one of them got really irate and began sweating rather profusely and tried to force his way through. And a number of people have tried to do that, too, and sorry, nobody gets through today, no work today. Everybody has to take the day off.

MARIA CARRION: What group are you with?

TEAMSTER 2: I’m a Teamster, too.

MARIA CARRION: Thank you very much. Where did you come from to be here today?

TEAMSTER: Vermont.

CROWD: Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets! Whose streets? Our streets!

UNIDENTIFIED MAN: Yeah, I used to really not have a clue about what this country, you know, was really all about, but then I went and worked in Nicaragua in the 1980s with a group called Witness for Peace and saw how US policy there was funding to —

AMY GOODMAN: And you’ve been listening to the Battle after Seattle, the sounds of the streets of Washington, D.C. this past weekend, produced with Maria Carrion.

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