Benny relives Occupy Wall St
AS OCCUPY Wall Street protesters flooded back into a New York park after a turbulent 24 hours of arrests, Nimbin protester Benny Zable recalled the moment almost two months to the day that sparked the world-wide phenomenon.
Mr Zable, now back at home at the Nimbin Environment Centre, arrived in New York as creative director for New York's Ecofest and the UN's International Vigil for peace, just as the Occupy Wall Street tents went up in Manhattan's Zuccotti Park.
"People are fed up. The whole campaign is to liberate the commons, bring back the common spaces where we can be creative and expose the corruption we need to to save our own necks," he said.
"The commons (the traditional village common lands) have been privatised and we're opening them up for open forums, for exhibiting, and developing alternative lifestyles for people to see - it's a shared thing, it's not an us and them thing.
"There are people in Wall Street who are totally hip to it, really on-side with it - they came down and encouraged us, donated and whatever - it isn't the left and right thing in the media, we're in a crisis and as Al Gore puts it, the whole thing is a big primal scream."
"It's happening right where the revolution began in America - it's the screaming we've got to have to change.
"The protesters want to show it, exhibit it, they want leaders to move on alternative energy and show how we do it. Most of New York supports it, (Americans) are losing their houses, their health care ... multiple issues related to the greed factor."
Mr Zable was a favorite in his grim-reaper-style costume that he has performed in on the world protest stage now for decades.
"When I got to Wall Street and they knew I was Australian people were asking about Nimbin, they asked 'have you got anything to do with Nimbin?' ... they know about our town and they think it's great.
"We're pretty advanced here in terms of alternatives, it's pretty downplayed but we're really lucky."