Photos of Zombie Bank Protest

The Zombie Bank protest Occupy Eugene held on Friday the 13th went amazingly well thanks to makeup artists, sign makers, artists, printers, furniture deliveries, medical suppliers, and of course the occupiers themselves.

While we were there, we handed out flyers to engage with people about how Bank of America has been bankrupting America as a Zombie Bank after it was resurrected from the dead by our government in 2008 with a 45 billion bailout.

Now many people are losing their homes to illegal foreclosures and they get $2,000, if any money at all as compensation for wrong doing on the bank’s part.

The protests will continue next week, with a special guest Max Rameau, author of Take Back the Land.

Have a look at some of the photos taken by our talented photographers.

Send Foreclosure Letter to Governor

This Friday, April 6th the Occupy Foreclosure Action Committee is calling on you to send the Oregon Governor a letter we have written asking him to sign 1552 into law and impose a moratorium on foreclosures until the law can be implemented, 91 days after he signs it. There is no deadline, but we would love to have the governor receive as many letters within one week as possible.

1552 recently passed during the Oregon state legislative session and it ends a process known as duel tracking. Duel tracking is when the banks claim to be negotiating with homeowners, but instead they lie, saying they never received homeowner submitted documents to purposefully stall the process so they can foreclose on the homeowner at the same time. That is no longer allowed according to 1552. The bill also requires banks to meet with homeowners in loan modification negotiations if the homeowner requests it.

1552 isn’t perfect, but it will help some homeowners, and it needs to be signed immediately. However, even after being signed by the Oregon governor, it won’t go into affect for an additional 91 days. We are calling on the Oregon governor to implement a statewide moratorium on foreclosures until the bill can be completely implemented and effective.

The letter we have drafted for you to send is below. You can copy and paste into your document editor software of choice or download the DOC to print, sign, and send to the Oregon governor. We recommend sending it via registered returned receipt from your local US post office to be sure they received your letter.

Thank you for all you do!
– The Occupy Foreclosure Action Committee

Governor Kitzhaber
160 State Capitol
900 Court Street
Salem, Oregon 97301-4047
[Today’s date]

Dear Governor Kitzhaber,

I am a concerned citizen living in Eugene Oregon and I respectfully call on you to act in your capacities as chief executive and the chief defender of the State’s laws and immediately impose a moratorium on all foreclosures in Oregon until SB 1552B takes effect. I also respectfully urge all due haste in signing SB 1552B into law.

I am gratified by the passage of SB 1552B, which mandates face-to-face mediation between banks and homeowners, offers more protection for renters of foreclosed properties, and ends “dual tracking” efforts by lenders. This legislation offers substantial protection of the rights of Oregon homeowners.

However, I am concerned that during the period before the bill takes effect lenders might accelerate foreclosure actions in order to get around these new regulations. Only last Friday, the Securities and Exchange Commission was forced to file suit in the Northern California US District Court against Wells Fargo to obtain documentation for its mortgage practices. Currently, there is great uncertainty regarding the legality of foreclosure practices being utilized by the big banks.

The Attorney General of Washington State suggests that Homeowners may possess a cause of action against MERS because MERS is not a lawful beneficiary. Similarly, two Federal Judges in Oregon and our own Attorney General Kroger have recently opined that MERS is in violation of Oregon law. As you know, adding more foreclosures of questionable legality to the existing backlog only compounds the problems SB 1552B is designed to alleviate. More Oregon homeowners will fall victim to illegal foreclosure practices, and foreclosures also result in reduced property tax revenue for our struggling counties.

I appreciate the effective homeowner protection rules Mr. Kroger has put in place, and strongly suggest you add a temporary foreclosure moratorium to them, to protect Oregon homeowners until the safeguards of SB 1552 take effect. We have initiated a petition to this effect, with a target of gathering 50,000 signatures. You may view it here:

Respectfully submitted,

[Your name, address, phone number]

Trayvon Martin

The Friday March 23rd General Assembly consented to this statement, “Occupy Eugene stands with the family of Trayvon Martin and demands justice for his killing.”

image of trayvon martin

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Opinion: Failure within Occupy Eugene

Author: Reid Kimball
Editor: OE Communications
This opinion piece was approved by the OE Communications committee by receiving the minimum number of at least 6 votes needed for publication.

When I was a young boy skating during ice hockey practice I pushed myself beyond my limits to skate as fast as I could. I ended up falling down and crashing into the boards of the ice rink.

I wasn’t hurt in the slightest bit, but it was embarrassing. I knew my coach would be upset that I had failed to skate correctly. After I finished the drill behind the others, he skated over to everyone and looked at me straight in the eyes.

“Did you all see what Reid did back there?”

I knew it. I’m toast.

“He fell down, but he didn’t care. He got back up immediately and finished strong.”

I did?

“You can’t be afraid to fall. Every chance you have on the ice, you push yourself harder and if you fall, you get back up and try again.”

I was smiling.

He finished, “If you aren’t falling, you aren’t trying hard enough.”

This last statement has stuck with me ever since and I think it applies to Occupy Eugene in spades, because within OE we have a problem with accepting failure.

Many of us are young and inexperienced; I am one of them. I have made lots of mistakes, some small, some rather large. I see lots of my brothers and sisters also making mistakes. It’s not because we are unorganized, don’t care, or agent provocateurs. It’s because we are trying and working our asses off. When we do this, we push the boundaries of what we are capable of and undoubtedly, we sometimes fall.

If we aren’t falling, we aren’t trying hard enough.

Despite our efforts, instead of helping each other when some of us fall, I see many within OE verbally attack one another. These attacks do nothing but demoralize and humiliate hardworking, well-meaning individuals from working towards creating the world we all want to see.

Is this what we need? To make everyone fear the opportunity that exists within each failure?

Some see Occupy Eugene as failing. Ignoring the debate of what equals a failure; in my opinion any failure is OK and is necessary. Without failure, we remain stagnant, quickly becoming old, and ineffective.

Within my professional career of video game development we have the philosophy, “fail fast, learn faster”. This is because video games are very complex to create and it is not easy to plan ahead what the end game experience will look like.

Instead of spending two years and millions of dollars on one core idea, we crudely implement many ideas as fast as possible, fully expecting that most of those ideas will be utter failures. But each one will help us get closer to our end goal of creating the best game we can.

Those who embrace failure, welcoming it with excitement, tend to grow the fastest.

It is said that Thomas Edison was interviewed by a reporter who asked him if he felt like a failure for having created thousands of light bulb prototypes that did not work. Edison answered, “Young man, why would I feel like a failure? And why would I ever give up? I now know definitively over 9,000 ways that an electric light bulb will not work. Success is almost in my grasp.” And he was right, because after surpassing 10,000 attempts, Edison invented the light bulb and our world has never been the same since.

With each failure we grow stronger. We learn something new about ourselves, our community, the Eugene police, the city council, and more.

But we won’t be able to grow unless we can accept failure, and we won’t be able to do that if we continue to attack each other for our well intentioned efforts.

The story of our hopefully future triumph will include all the obstacles and adversity we faced along the way, each failure will enrich the tapestry of our collective experience. Let’s not knock people who have fallen down, but help them to their feet when in need. Their failure should be seen as a success to be celebrated.

If we all knock each other down, who will be left standing to help us up when we fall?