October 31, 2011

Tennessee arresting reporter covering Occupy Nashville

Remember LEO Weekly's Jonathan Meador? Yep, they arrested him.

The chant, "this is what democracy looks like," makes less sense by the day. This is what fascism looks like.

October 26, 2011

Can our Metro Government evolve?

Just published this morning an overview of Councilman Fleming's proposals. Check it out:
Insider Louisville: Passing Ken Fleming’s nonpartisan Metro Council proposals will take courage, ‘belief we can do big things’

And if you haven't already, email all the members of the Metro Council and let them know if you support Fleming's proposals. Find the hard-copy of the actual resolution in the right over there >>>

Don't forget to let Metro Council know how YOU feel, too:

October 23, 2011

Democracy Now's Amy Goodman stops by Occupy Louisville on Day 18

Amy Goodman, of Democracy Now was in Louisville last night. After her talk at the ACLU Civil Rights dinner, which she rocked by the way, she stopped in on Occupy Louisville and did interviews. I videotaped some, and thought my readers might enjoy:

And some pictures of the night:

If you missed my guest editorial on Occupy Louisville, check it out:Courier Journal: Curtis Morrison | Heeding the 99 percent

October 20, 2011

Rushed Thursday thoughts

OMG. Have you registered to walk or run in the pet-friendly 5K Race to End Homelessness? Early registration ends October 30th, race is Nov. 5th. Do it NOW!:

If you're following, support, or don't support Occupy Louisville, you need to check out Terry Boyd's story this morning. While some of it is distressing, and sad, it's part of that "discussion" phase that we need to get through, not squelch or hide. So let's learn from it and move on:
Insider Louisville: Paranoia on Jefferson Square: Are anarchists hijacking Occupy Louisville like the extreme right took over the Tea Party?

Move On's grandma ad, politically genius. Good bye Herman Cain!

Amy Goodman will be guest speaker at Saturday night's ACLU Bill of Rights Dinner at the KY Center for African-American Heritage, and somehow I haven't gotten a free seat. Sad me.

Many of the ACLU's regular donors probably don't even realize how important she is. That's why you should come! After the dinner there will be student docents explaining the portrait exhibit that the ACLU has out, too.
To get tickets to Bill of Right's Dinner

Heeding the 99%

My latest 2 cents on Occupy Louisville in the Courier-Journal:
Curtis Morrison | Heeding the 99 percent
Here's a picture of me on Flickr by Diwore. I'm acting like Moses or something:

October 19, 2011

No Boehner for Curtis

Like a couple of my friends, also registered as Democrats, there will be no ticket for me to hear Representative John Boehner speak at U of L.

Does this mean I'll have to be outside? Louisville Democrats- Seriously, can't one of you organize a protest of this? All you have to do is set up a friggin' Facebook event really. I'm tired of doing everything for you guys when you do so very little for me.

October 18, 2011

GLI, United Nations, Kentucky and Climate Change

First, I need to plug Brian Tucker "telling us how he really feels" about GLI and the UAW/Ford contract:
Insider Louisville

And I need to plug a couple United Nations-related events this week in Kentucky:
Wednesday: Bill Miller, member of the UNA Board of Directors in NYC and producer/moderator of Global Connections Television, will give a presentation on the 8 MGDs and their impact in KY at the University of Louisville. The group sponsoring this,, is planning an essay contest soon, I think the prize will be like $1000 so might want to hang out with these folks, eh? Details on Facebook.

Friday: And I've already confirmed for this. Whenever someone is talking about climate change in Frankfort, we need to encourage them!
The Kentucky Division of The United Nations Association (KDUNA) is Celebration of United Nations Day 2011 focusing on the Environment
Friday, October 21, 2011

12:00 Noon Luncheon
The Capital Plaza Hotel
405 Wilkinson Boulevard
Frankfort, Kentucky

Governor Steven L. Beshear Proclamation for the 2011 UN Day Theme: "The UN – In Everyone’s Interest” presentation by Colmon Elridge III, Assistant to Governor Beshear

Congressman John Yarmuth in person or by special video

Art Williams, Environmental Attorney:
" Rio + 20: Is the planet in better shape now than in 1992?"
Tom FitzGerald, Director KY Resources Council, Attorney:
“Kentucky & Climate Change”

$25.00 each chicken or steak lunch, or $15 for students.
Reserve your space fast: Teena Halbig (502) 267-6883/
Ironically I'm headed to Frankfort now with a friend. Anything fun I should do there today, let me know!

October 16, 2011

Help us find a home for this little buddy

"Teddy" is a four year old Jack Russell Terrier mix. My niece, Isabella, rescued him from a kill shelter. She noticed he had anxiety which caused him to be timid when interviewed by prospective companions in the shelter. It only took a few hours to warm up to her though, and now he's kinda co-dependent!

Teddy loves to run, jog, and play. He needs a companion who has time to spend with him. He's had his shots, he's chipped and recently neutered. Also, he's not attached to that name, and welcomes a new name as well.
For more information on Teddy, contact Isabella via email:

October 15, 2011

Rest in peace, Frank Kameny

We often forget, there were people fighting for gay rights in the 1940's, 1950's, 1960's, 1970's, 1980's, 1990's, as well as this century. And there was this one guy who was there fighting for all those decades and his name was Frank Kameny. He was the first U.S. citizen terminated from civil service for his sexual orientation to sue, and that was something like in 1950's? But his activism didn't stop there. He devoted his life advocating for others similarly discriminated against. He died today at 86 years of age.

I had the privilege of hearing him speak at a ceremony honoring deceased LGBT soldiers the day before the 2008 National Equality March. Took a video, sorry about the quality:

October 14, 2011

Prediction for TIME's 2011 person of the year: Kalle Lasn

I want to call it first. My prediction for TIME's 2011 person of the year will be Charlie Sheen, Michelle Bachman, Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich, Stephen Harper, no, no...It will be:

Kalle Lasn

"Who the hell is that?" you ask?

And that's one reason why he's a shoe-in.

Lasn, with Bill Schmalz, is a co-founder of a Canadian magazine called Adbusters, which, purely by chance, I picked up a copy of in Ottawa a few weeks ago. (I seem to recall buying an issue in the mid-1990's so this would have been my 2nd issue.)

Adbusters appears to be the parents of a little idea known as "Occupy Wall Street" which he first introduced publicly on Adbuster's blog on July 13, 2011. (Adbusters: #OCCUPYWALLSTREET A shift in revolutionary tactics.) In that entry, appeared this observation:
"...instead of being caught helpless by the current power structure, we the people start getting what we want whether it be the dismantling of half the 1,000 military bases America has around the world to the reinstatement of the Glass-Steagall Act or a three strikes and you're out law for corporate criminals. Beginning from one simple demand – a presidential commission to separate money from politics – we start setting the agenda for a new America." -It was signed by "Culture Jammers HQ"
A little idea which has incidentally,so far, has spread to an the notion of "Occupy where-ever-the-hell-you-are-if-2-or-more-people-are-gathered."

Lasn isn't shy. He spoke to CNN Money for a story which appeared Friday, September 16, 2011, the day before the protest. (CNN: Thousands of protesters to 'Occupy Wall Street' on Saturday)

Lasn also isn't trying to hide anything either, having registered the domain name for, in his own personal name on June 11, 2011, more than 3 months before the protest began:
The address on the registration is Adbuster's home office, which is kind of like the Garden of Eden of the Occupy movement. Having been a powerhouse critical of our planet's obsession with consumerism over the last 20 years leading up to Occupy movement, the Adbuster's office space will likely someday be a museum. Just without a gift shop.

Washington Post did a phone interview with Lasn a couple days ago that's worth a read. (Washington Post: Occupy Wall Street: An interview with Kalle Lasn, the man behind it all)

Q. "What kind of demands?"

A. "I think people want a Robin Hood tax on all trades, they want to bring back the Glass-Steagall Act, to ban high-frequency flash trading, implement banking reform, clean up corruption in Washington, and down the road, a third party may spring up."

Picture below by author is Louisville, Kentucky's John Miller and Carol Johnson-Smith who were at Occupy Louisville with this sign on Glass-Steagall on Day 1 (October 4, 2011):

One last thing, if you're one of my Louisville, Kentucky peeps, I received a tweet today from this guy confirming what was announced last night, that Occupy Louisville now has a permit for the Jefferson Square Park location.
A nice touch. I think he likes me.

Occupy Louisville supporter speaks to council

Captioned by Jim Pence, not me.

Lesson for future Occupiers speaking before Council: It's not necessary to speak quite so loud when there's a PA system. There's a "MIC check" joke here somewhere but I haven't had coffee yet.

October 13, 2011

Attica Scott elected to Louisville's newest Metro Councilmember

Congratulations, Attica! It's a great day for Louisville, Kentucky!!! She won with 18 votes, to 7 votes who were for other candidates.

Grinstead Drive deserves bike lanes, let KYTC know

From an email from Melanie Smith:
Hello Active Living enthusiasts. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC) is asking the public to comment on a plan to change Grinstead Drive from Bardstown Road to Cherokee Parkway (next to Cherokee Golf Course) to reduce the lanes from 2 each way to 1 each way, adding a turning lane and parking for cars.
You can learn more here:
No bike lanes are being considered for this project.
If you would like to share your thoughts on the plan, you must contact Jason Richardson at KYTC by email, phone or letter by Oct. 27th:

Jason Richardson, P.E.
Kentucky Transportation Cabinet
District 5 - Louisville
8310 Westport Road
Louisville, KY 40242
(502) 210-5400
(502) 210-5498 Fax

I've already submitted my input, that I want friggin bike lanes, and got a timely acknowledgement of my input, see below:

October 11, 2011

The Elizabeth Warren video that won't go away

Also, if you want tickets to the Boehner event in Louisville:

Running from organizing this Boehner protest makes me feel like Bill Christy.

Just checked my University email and of course the McConnell Center is making Representative John Boehner's visit seem like an opportunity to meet Christ.

I feel like Bill Christy. No. I'm not going to organize it. I'm not going to do it. Haven't I done enough unpaid political consulting and activism for one damn calendar year? Ask someone else. Or better yet, do it yourself. You don't need a permit, that's just bullshit. Just do it.

I need to study. I have papers coming up due that I haven't even started on. I'm not going to do it. No.
Leave me alone.

‘Democrats can’t wait to get their hands on this movement’

Lots of people have been asking me if I thought it was a threat the Occupy Louisville movement would be co-opted, and so I thought we'd just clear the air on that with a diverse audience:

Curtis Morrison: Occupy Louisville: ‘Democrats can’t wait to get their hands on this movement’

Christy Shank with WAVE 3 has called me this morning as the Mayor's office has just let them know there's going to be a "Tribute to fallen firefighters" ceremony at Jefferson Square Park today, and she wanted to know if Occupy Louisville was aware of the conflict? I told her no, but I was not on the scene, but I find no mention of a ceremony on the Metro Calendar.
I did find where there was a similarly-themed ceremony in the same location on September 11th: 9/11 Passion for Freedom. Odd.

October 10, 2011

"Any reason why you're recording?"- LMPD

Sunday was an interesting day for Curtis. My friend Martina Kunnecke joined me down at Occupy Louisville for Day 6. Before we arrived, we heard that Mayor Fischer actually stopped in on the group.

Occupy Louisville had a great General Assembly (GA), (pictured above) which included:
1) A vote for affirming transparency by having the minutes reflect all that goes on, and,

2) A vote for a march this coming Thursday at 5 pm, from 6th and Jefferson Streets to Expressions of You Coffee House, located at 1800 W Muhammad Ali Blvd.
Unrelated to the GA, I talked to Appalachian/folk singer Catherine Irwin today, who is open to providing entertainment in the very near future. SWEET!!!

Now for the strange. There is no police detail to the group now. I have mixed feelings about that, because crowds of people, no matter how peaceful need someone available in the event something goes a little sideways through the actions of others.

This was the case tonight, ironically, as an erratically-driving Hoosier started yelling at us and harassing us in the park. I was who called the police, and I chatted about the event on twitter. A few people didn't think I should have either called the police or shared my perspective on twitter, and that's their right.
The police did a great job taking the time to talk to that Hoosier, and eventually they decided to arrest him. The whole thing was rather professional on behalf of the LMPD.

A couple hours later, after taking a load of stuff over to what is called "Camp Belvedere," where the hard-core "occupiers" spend the night, I was driving by Jefferson Park on my way home and saw a man on the ground screaming profanities at the LMPD officers who was detaining him. Since I'd already witnessed and recorded one arrest today earlier, I thought, why not record another? Apparently in Louisville, I need to get permission to do that?

October 8, 2011

Psst, Greg. LMPD is jackin' us around.

LMPD has stuck with this bull that Occupy Louisville needs to go to the Belvedere nightly to sleep, and the reason we were initially given was because there are restrooms there. Only they are locked.
But at our desired location, where we spend our days now, at Jefferson Square Park at 6th and Jefferson, well there are restrooms there, across street in courthouse, open 24/7.

The arbitrariness of LMPD accepting our occupation of a park that inconveniences us, but gets us out of the sight of your office window is problematic.

If anyone else thinks this is just BS & Greg needs to instruct Chief White to quit herding us around downtown like we are cattle, just let him know. Here's a couple examples of ways to do that:

Occupy Louisville: The LIVESTREAM

Sorry to say I missed what I understand was an awesome march from U of L on Day 4 (Friday). A fellow Occupy Louisville participant overheard a WHAS11 reporter at U of L today was asking multiple students if they took off from work to "occupy." Considering they were students, there is a perception amongst my friend that was a baited question, and it's an interesting question.

I stopped in on Camp Belvedere a walla, where I was dressed as an Easter egg (above right), where some real badasses about to embark on Night 4, before returning to Jefferson Square Park in the morning. I haven't spent night on Belvedere yet, but I can see where it would be cool to wake up to such a big sky!

I feel selfish I took time away from the occupation today to spend time with a special guy. Consider this my confession, and I'll consider myself absolved.

Also, someone from our media team brought up the point that the LIVESTREAM link isn't getting out, and I agree, so here it is. Tweet it, Facebook it, share it. You know the drill:

Watch live streaming video from occupylouisville at

See the occupation LIVE on livestream

Finally, if you are in a band, come out and play at 6th and Jefferson tomorrow anytime after noon. We have electricity, might as well use it!

October 7, 2011

LMPD hiring people w/no union dispute experience to Occupy Louisville

You want to spend time in solidarity with those in Occupy Louisville, and be amongst the hundreds of thousands of people participating in at least 847 occupations currently underway in our country, AND you want to be PAID to do it?

No problem. The Louisville Civil Service and Police Merit Board is currently hiring Police Recruits. This is a Full-Time position, working 1st Shift, 2nd Shift, 3rd Shift, and Weekends. No direct link, because Metro Louisville tech dept is still stuck in 1987, but you can find position by searching here:

To qualify for the position, an applicant:

"Must not within a period of two years hired himself (herself) out, performed any service, or received any compensation from any private source for acting as a privately paid detective, policeman, guard, peace officer or otherwise as an active participant in any labor dispute, or conducted the business of a private detective agency or of any agency supplying private detectives, private policemen or private guards, or advertised or solicited any such business in connection with any labor dispute."
Why is this a problem?:
"active participant in any labor dispute," could mean that applicants can never have been in a union. There are unions that don't have labor disputes, I prefer to think of them as middle-aged men circle jerking while drunk social clubs. Real unions, have disputes, because they are standing up for real people.

The question is, why would union membership preclude employment with the Louisville Metro Police Department?

From Day 1, Louisville's finest:

And Day 2:

And Day 3:

Ella's song: dedicated to Jaison Gardner for his hard work for Occupy Louisville

Just uploaded "We who believe in freedom" by Bernice Johnson in honor our of Jaison Gardner who has been working his tail off for Occupy Louisville:

I first heard this song in Louisville, on the night of Barack Obama's inauguration. I think it was from Carol Kraemer's beautiful voice. It has been playing in my head every since.

Let's learn the lyrics on a 6 minute version:

Day 3 has a setback, stoked about tomorrow's U of L March

As Day 3 of Occupy Louisville drew to a close Thursday, participants voted in a General Assembly to relocate to Jefferson Square Park, at 6th and Jefferson Streets, in anticipation that a permit which had been applied for earlier in the day would be approved before 11 pm.

Despite assurances to the contrary, the LMPD approached us to inform us we could not occupy Jefferson Square Park after midnight without a permit, but presumably we were to be allowed on the Belvedere again. The arbitrariness of that decision was more than frustrating, but it was real. Here's the audio which I recorded from LMPD officer Scott Perry at Jefferson Square Park, 8:23 PM, as he explained the consequences of staying in Jefferson Square Park. (Pictured below right. All rights to audio & picture released.)
Following that talk with Officer Perry, the General Assembly of Occupy Louisville met, and decided to relocate to the Belvedere before 11 pm, in hopes of avoiding arrest, as the Belvedere had been safe for the last two nights, despite have locked restrooms, and a sprinkler system that, for some reason, is still operating in October.

Thursday morning Louisville Metro Councilman Tom Owen emailed me he didn't support a "long-term occupation." It's no surprise the LMPD baits demonstrators from Aegon Park to Jefferson Square Park, only to effectively force them to relocate back to the Belvedere. An unambiguous message is being sent to participants. That message is "We're going to wear you down you little people."

What those in power clearly don't understand is the courageous people in this movement will be running our country soon, and how we treat them now will greatly determine how they choose to take over.

Beginning Friday at 11:30 AM, new and returning Occupy Louisville participants will be occupying at the University of Louisville, before proceeding peacefully in an approximately 3.1 mile march to join Occupy Louisville participants at either 4th and Jefferson, or 6th and Jefferson, many of whom would have spent the night outside on the Belvedere. (Facebook event)

Route I'm proposing (but not my decision):

View Larger Map
Also, during the 10/06/2011 9-10 PM General Assembly meeting of Occupy Louisville, a proposal was made that for at least the short-term future, the organization would not be issuing official press releases and confine media official group-sanctioned communication via the social media outlets listed below, however individuals are welcome and encouraged to share their individual stories, perspectives, and media with the public. (Voila!)

Other ways to keep up with Occupy Louisville:

Website for Occupy Louisville:
Facebook Page for Occupy Louisville:
Twitter account for Occupy Louisville:
Twitter hashtag for Occupy Louisville:

And Devin Katayama with WFPL gave a venue for me and Sandy Morgan to continue to argue about what Occupy Louisville should be about. I say civil disobedience, she says something else, check out the comments. It's an interesting discussion, but I'm right: Louisvillians Protest Against Corporate Greed, Special Interests and Political Influence

Update: I just found in my email an update from our legal team, we now have 5-6 attorneys willing to take a case each, pro bono, in the event of arrest.

October 6, 2011

Occupy Louisville on Day 3, General Assembly starting 7 PM

Activist Jaison Gardner, pictured right, applied for a permit for Occupy Louisville today that would start at 11 pm tonight and extend through the end of the year at the 6th and Jefferson location beside City Hall.

The 6th and Jefferson location is perfect because it still keeps us in the eyes of the public with access to restrooms in the Courthouse, and no vulnerable feelings down at the Belvedere. Where participants have not had access to bathrooms and were attacked by sprinklers at 1 am last night. We are still waiting to hear if this permit is approved. I have left messages with LMPD's Lt Chavez on her office and cellphones since 6:30 PM. I really wish our liaison officer was liaisonable.

Pictured below, Mr. Awesome, Tim Lescinski, who just randomly showed up with a bunch of food to donate today:

Pictured here are Caitlin Woolsey and Eliot Colin, from Evansville, Indiana:

Pictured here with an epic sign is Anna Kaser:

Here's the mid-afternoon crowd today enjoying the shade:

Finally, tonight's General Assembly begins at 7 pm, corner of 4th and Jefferson Streets, Shawn Reilly is scooping me now so I'll see you all there!

Honestly, LMPD is bein cool so far w/ Occupy Louisville

In New York, while thousands demonstrate in Occupy Wall Street, the police loose their cool, again:

In Louisville, Kentucky, not so much.

In fact, they were cool today. Considering yesterday they told us without a permit, we'd face arrest and um, today, shit, it's midnight, yesterday, oh whatever, Day 2 went by without an arrest action. Makes me think this thing may play out cooler than I feared.

Except for making us nervous for hanging out. But we're getting used to them, and they're getting used to us. Maybe this will be okay. An officer told me tonight that there won't be arrests as long as Aegon Park is vacated by 11 pm, like last night and the demonstrators move to the Belvedere for the night.

There's talk of permits being negotiated that might allow the demonstration to move to 6th and Jefferson but the police liaison has not shared that information with me. I think that's Jaison Gardner working through Councilman Tandy that's working on that. I understand Tandy's LA stopped by today, and Councilman David James said he was going to but I don't know if he made it by for sure.

Finally, a demonstrator told me when Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer walked by today, he said "Hey, aren't you our mayor?" and Greg said:
"Yes, I am. Thank you all for being out here."
Which probably means I won't be picking on him forever now. Shit.

I still think it's a good idea to lobby the Louisville Metro Council to pass a resolution of support as soon as possible. They have a Democratic Party majority, right? Talk the talk, walk the walk, I say: Louisville Metro Council: Help Occupy Louisville

I was on WLKY yesterday, not sounding near as inarticulate as usual:

Pictures from tonight before the crowd moved to the Belvedere:

Also, donations of food are always appreciated. Pizzas make people happy. As of tonight, there was a ton of bottle water, I'm not sure where it was donated, so good on that. For future, hoping maybe, I don't know, Gil Holland?...could get a hold of some kind of public water dispenser like they used at Forecastle for people to refill their bottles instead of bottled water? Please?

And this is fun for the people who like to make fun of me for being inarticulate, like myself:

October 5, 2011

Occupy Louisville's Tuesday night's stay on Belvedere

Video compliments of Hillbilly Report.

Louisville Metro Council: Help Occupy Louisville

Arrests were threatened last night by LMPD if participants returned to assemble in the 4th and Jefferson location without a permit, however, participants have returned without a permit, and the police have stood down. Time for us to join them, as I will be after tying up some loose media ends offsite.

One of Occupy Louisville's sympathizers and participants, social justice activist Jaison Gardner applied for a permit today for Occupy Louisville to stay in the 4th and Jefferson location. He did not pay the fee, as the General Assembly of Occupy Louisville did not believe that was fair. (As I have believed for years now.)

When I just contacted our police liaison, Lt. Chavez, she was not aware that a permit had been applied for (besides the one that an individual organizer applied for Monday for the Belvedere). Lt. Chavez is going to look into it, and get back with me.

Lt. Chavez had prepared me earlier this morning that a permit will likely not be approved for the Aegon Park or 6th and Jefferson, by the Mayor's office. Lt. Chavez represented to me that the "6th and Jefferson" location is "booked."

The 4th and Jefferson Park is a city park but the Aegon building's owner, the Hine's Corporation, has contractual control over it. I have made a request to Chris Siminisky with Hines Corporation, located in the Aegon for their cooperation in allowing the ongoing peaceful disobedience action to continue in Aegon Park, but have not heard back.

At the height of yesterday's action around 2 pm, approximately 250 participants were present.

Participants spent the night on the Belvedere, after voting with their General Assembly:

The first two items passed at yesterday's General Assembly were: 1) A commitment to make this an ongoing overnight action. 2) A commitment to non-violent peaceful assembly.

Kudo's to Shawn Reilly who just took "occupiers" bananas and granola bars down at tha 4th and Jefferson location. We need more Shawn Reilly's!!! Also, development in Los Angeles, their city council has passed resolution of support for #occupyLA. LA Times

I have requested our Metro Council do the same BUT NEED YOU TO JOIN ME! Please email your council member with the message below, or customize, that's cool!:

As you know Occupy Louisville, a peaceful civil disobedience action, is on it's second day, despite intimidation techniques by LMPD like circling paddy wagons and an abundance of law enforcement, and continued threats the participants will be arrested because their demonstrations do not have an approved permit.

I am writing to ask the Metro Council to convene immediately and pass a resolution of support for the peaceful Occupy Louisville demonstration, and for their right to occupy the Aegon park. Peaceful demonstration, the right to free speech, is in the best interest of all. Please be on the right side of history.

Pictured below is local politician John Miller, who made an unsuccessful bid for Tina Ward-Pugh's Metro Council seat in 2010, and has been lobbying Congrssman Yarmuth on issues related to Occupy Louisville for some time.

Great video coverage from yesterday including police interaction with participant who was driving a car with a mask, apparently that's illegal. Who knew?

Update: 3:56 pm
The 6th District Councilman David James has emailed back one of those lobbying for the Metro Council to step in, saying he plans to visit the demonstration today, as well as talk with law enforcement officers on the scene.This may be key has James has more extensive law enforcement experience than anyone on our Council. Screenshot of his email below: