Numbers drop for second Occupy Naples rally, protesters demand to be heard - PHOTOS

David Albers/Staff
-  David Oldfield, of Naples, demonstrates wearing a Guy Fawkes mask along Fifth Avenue South with other Occupy Naples protestors on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011.  About 100 protestors marched along Fifth Avenue South and gathered at the corner of US 41 mirroring recent global protests against corporate greed, corruption and influence over government.

Photo by DAVID ALBERS // Buy this photo

David Albers/Staff - David Oldfield, of Naples, demonstrates wearing a Guy Fawkes mask along Fifth Avenue South with other Occupy Naples protestors on Saturday, Nov. 5, 2011. About 100 protestors marched along Fifth Avenue South and gathered at the corner of US 41 mirroring recent global protests against corporate greed, corruption and influence over government.

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— When Occupy Naples gathered last month, more than 300 marched through the downtown Naples area, passionately protesting. Saturday, for the second rally, fewer than 100 protesters made signs and vehemently voiced their frustrations.

But those who came wanted to be seen. And they wanted to be heard.

"Yep, the 99 percent actually lives in Naples, too," quipped retirees Steve Hemping and Mike Stone, referring to those without the world's wealth. "It's hard to believe, but you can believe it."

During three hours of marching, chanting and conversing Saturday, the participants were adamant about pioneering social and financial reform.

As they walked along Fifth Avenue South, passing the lush landscaping and popular restaurants, protesters bellowed statements such as: "What does democracy look like?"

To which others responded, "This is what democracy looks like!" Red, white and black signs were met with either cheers and thumbs up, or snubs and stares.

"This is ridiculous," said Christian Lefave, 28, a construction company owner from Windsor, Ontario. "I don't think they're accomplishing anything."

Lefave and his friend, Brittney Hoffman, 29, ducked between protesters on Fifth Avenue South, weaving toward the crosswalk at the U.S. 41 intersection.

"They're disruptive, unsafe, causing traffic," Lefave said. "They're costing the taxpayers money, too, by tying up police just so they have special accommodations."

Though the march allowed people to be heard, Hoffman questioned what the purpose of the protest was.

"Do they know why they are protesting?" she asked. "Do they actually know what they are talking about here to make a big protest?"

Though often criticized for not having a direct goal or purpose for the marches, Saturday's rally in Naples did have a clear theme: Citizens are frustrated.

It's frustration that unifies them, but the source of that frustration varies by individual.

"They're upset about so much, they can't say just one thing," Dr. Richard DelBoccio, a Naples dentist, said before entering Sushi-Thai on Fifth Avenue South. "People are holding different signs showing what's wrong. It's not just war, it's the sales tax, it's the job cuts, it's everything."

People came out of their shops or looked up from their meals as the distant chants, "hey corporation, give it back," approached. One observer said to John Ricco: "What are you protesting?"

"Everything," Ricco, 73, a Naples-area resident, fired back.

Many of Ricco's family members, including a grandson, did tours in Afghanistan and he wants the war to stop. But, for the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, the protest meant another chance to demand better pay for farm workers.

While the fervor continued from the previous protest, there wasn't the strength in numbers as before.

Karen Dwyer, a former high school English teacher and college professor, organized the protest Saturday and pointed to a lack of publicity for the dwindling numbers.

"The biggest problem was letting people know we're protesting," Dwyer said, confident that more people will be made aware of the protests in the future.

But to Lefave and Hoffman, the number of people isn't the point.

"There's no one here to make a decision," Lefave said. "This is a tourist destination with retirees."

Naples-area residents Barbara Bolcavage and Rich Rossi, authors of the book "Saving Middle America: Securing Financial Dreams," said grassroot efforts spur reform.

"It has to start with the people," said Bolcavage, who wasn't marching with the protesters. "We live in a capitalistic society, and they're going to do what capitalistic societies do. It has to start with them. They're tired of being taken advantage of."

The protests began in New York City on Sept. 17 with Occupy Wall Street. Within a month, they had spread worldwide. Simultaneously, 951 cities and 82 countries participated in "Occupy" protests on Oct. 15.

"Instead of a government run by corporations and other special interests, we want to change campaign finance laws to get politicians out of the pockets of lobbyists," a flier for the protest reads. "(We want to) overturn the notion of corporate personhood ... properly regulate and control corporations for the common good."

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Comments » 18

blogsmog writes:

'occupy' Naples..? How about 'We want what they have, but don't want to work for it' Naples...

OldMarcoMan writes:

How about ' If you want Government to listen,, VOTE"

jlare46#234008 writes:

What are you protesting, Ricco answers "everything",
What a joke, get a job you low-lifes and work your way up the ladder like everyone else.

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

in response to OldMarcoMan:

How about ' If you want Government to listen,, VOTE"

Idiot...Vote? For What? Obama? Romney? Cain? It makes no difference. They're all the same. Spend, spend, spend! Never stop. Why? Because they can't get elected if they stop spending. Your vote doesn't count once these people get into office. The only vote that counts then are the lobbyist votes, the votes that lead to campaign contributions. You are just one of the many idiot Boomer generation that believe the lies.

Watch Greece, then Italy, then basically the entire EU. They are either going to blow up, or the ECB is going to crank up the printing press (most likely outcome) unless the Germans say no due to the fact that they have experience with hyper inflation. Either way the EU is finished.

As to OWS, they don't want free stuff, they do want jobs. What they really want is government to stop spending they're future, they're kids future, and there grand kids future into the toilet. Going after the business, and banks that lobby and give money to politicians for favors seems to be the best way to do it. Cut off the snakes head in order to control it, I guess.

Keep your eye on the ball oldmarcoman. Voting isn't the ball. 2008 is going to look like a picnic compared to what is about to spread around the world!

liberator100 writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

blogsmog writes:

in response to liberator100:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

in response to GorchFock:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

You must be joking? The Euro is an experiment gone bad. 17+ countries that all speak different languages, have different cultures, different economies, etc. The EU is going down. The ECB can't print like the FED can with out leading to horrible consequences in the EU.

Being the world reserve currency is a huge plus to the USA. Everything in the world is traded in $ making it almost impossible for us to hyper inflate the $. The Fed can drive the value of the $ down by printing but in doing so we are exporting our inflation all over the world in the price of commodities. Not good I know. It also hurts Americans.

Trust me, The Euro is going down! USA biggest lender to Greece? Warren Buffet, or Bill Gates could bail out Greece. The problem is Greece is the match, Italy is a ton of kindling that will roar into a forest fire. History will show the Italian people are not fond of other people trying to control them. Wait till the Italians tell the ECB and IMF to shove their austerity measures where the sun don't shine! The Greeks will do the same, so will spain, Portugal, and so on. Want to bet?

happy6 writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

in response to GorchFock:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I did not mean that literally Buffet or Gate would bail out Greece. My point is their economy is very small. Yes the US has unsustainable debt. Also, the US is the world reserve currency. That means a lot.

So this morning the Italian 10 year bond yield is 10%, spreading to French bond yields. Soon Spain and Portugal bonds yields begin to blow out. Then What? I will tell you. The ECB begins to print like crazy. There is no other option. The Germans will not like this. May even leave the Euro or force the weak nations out. I don't know. By the way, the unsterilized bond purchases being done by the ECB are nothing more than "printing money" to support the bond markets in the EZ, it is failing! The Euro, it's done, stick a fork in it!

The US will suffer the same fate eventually. When the markets figure out that we can't pay our debts bond yields will rise and no amount of printing to control yields will matter. The western world never allowed the last down turn in the economy to clear the bad debt. There is no turning back now.

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

Maybe you don't read English very well? Maybe you don't understand economics? Do you understand what rising bond yields mean? They mean the cost to borrow is higher. Every nation sells debt (bonds) to fund there government. The higher the yield the higher the debt service. Yes you are correct. America has spent itself into oblivion. You are wrong to believe that the Euro Nations haven't done the same and are actually years ahead of us.

Germany will never leave the Euro? Germans must be the nicest people in the world? You are saying they will bail out Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal, and France all on the backs of German taxpayers? I doubt it. If you are a German you have certainly been told what happened to your country after WW1? You think the Germans will risk a repeat of that and stand by and watch the ECB print Euros. I doubt it. I'm happy you are so patriotic. So now I will be. Without America there would be no Euro Zone.

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

American banks are not the largest buyers of PIIGS debt. The ECB and European banks are, along with some other nations, Japan, China, UK, etc.

Credit rating means nothing to America at this point. We are the world reserve currency, everything around the world is traded in dollars, oil being the most important. There is always demand for US $. For now at least.

You are correct. There is not enough money in the world to bail out all the nations that have spent and promised too much to there citizens. Almost all of the developed nations. We all will eventually meet the same fate when government promises are broken to their citizens because servicing the debt is consuming all or most of the tax revenue. If this happens sooner rather than later the baby boom generation will be destroyed by loss of their pensions, 401k's, social security, medicare, rx drugs, maybe even bank accounts. B of A has around $1`Trillion in deposits alone. Good luck FDIC. The failing of Euro zone banks could spread around the globe like a forest fire. We could all wake up to the scenario I just described tomorrow morning.

This is why the Occupy movement has started. They understand that their future, their kids future, and grand kids future is being destroyed by the banks and corporations that pay the politicians to allow them to regulate themselves, change the rules to suit themselves, etc. Unfortunately most of these people don't understand the workings of politics and economics and don't know where to start. They just understand something is wrong.

It would be wise for us to help them figure out how to fix a broken system. Or...you can vote for Obama, or Romney and continue the same path we have been on for the last 98 years. Looks like that will end well for us?

happy6 writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

in response to GorchFock:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

"Looks like that will end well for us?"

That was sarcasm!

You really should go back to your own country. When the time comes that we all need knowledge (my word) and "luck" (your word). You may be much better off where you came from. Knowledge and preparation will be key. Relying on luck will get you killed. Prepare accordingly. I wish you well!

blogsmog writes:

Studerbaker: When is Europe(Germany) going to repay the US for WWII?

blogsmog writes:

Studerbaker, heres a dump question...are u upset that the USA at any point and time can go across the pond and dominate Germany?? I do believe this is where your hatred from America stems from you Domkoff..

happy34145 writes:

in response to GorchFock:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Studerbaker you really are a domkoff. where do you think blogsmog got the word 'dump' from????
Shame on you for for putting down this great nation!
Happy veterans day.

blogsmog writes:

I thought it was spelled DUMPkoff...HAHAHAHA

blogsmog writes:

KlausStoertbeker will be forever known on this blog site as 'DumpKoff'.
and if he changes his alias to avoid the title-'dumpkoff' we will no what his new alias is. Just think of how 'Shultz' from Hogans Heros would repond on these blogs and you will know ...thats the 'dumpkoff' KlausStoetebeker.

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