Thu, Oct 13, 2011 - Page 7 News List

Protesters stage ‘Millionaires March’


An Occupy Wall Street protester attends a “Millionaires March” on Tuesday around Manhattan’s Upper East Side, one of New York’s wealthiest residential neighborhoods.

Photo: AFP

Now it’s personal: Hundreds of anti-Wall Street protesters held a “Millionaires March” on Tuesday past the homes of some of the wealthiest executives in the US, stopping to jeer “Tax the rich!” and “Where’s my bailout?”

Walking two-by-two on the sidewalk because they had no march permit and did not want to be charged with blocking traffic, members of the Occupy Wall Street movement and other groups made their way up Manhattan’s East Side, along streets like Fifth Avenue and Park Avenue where some of the richest 1 percent of the population live in townhouses and luxury apartments.

They paused outside buildings where media mogul Rupert Murdoch, banker Jamie Dimon and oil tycoon David Koch have homes, and decried the impending expiration of New York’s 2 percent “millionaires’ tax” in December.

“I have nothing against these people personally. I just think they should pay their fair share of taxes,” said Michael Pollack, an office worker in a law firm.

He held up a sign with a saying attributed to department-store founder Edward Filene: “Why shouldn’t the American people take half my money from me? I took all of it from them.”

Pollack said: “It’s time for a new New Deal.”

For the past three-and-a-half weeks, protesters have occupied a park in lower Manhattan near Wall Street, denouncing corporate greed and the gap between rich and poor. The uptown march marked the first time the Occupy Wall Street movement has identified specific people as being part of the 1 percent the demonstrators say are getting rich at the expense of the rest of the US.

When the march reached Park Avenue and East 93rd Street, protesters stopped in front of a building where they said Dimon, JPMorgan Chase’s chairman and CEO, has an apartment.

“Where’s our bailout?” marchers screamed.

JPMorgan was among the banks that received a federal bailout, money it has since repaid.

Outside one building, protesters placed a giant replica of a check against the door. It was made out to “The top one percent” for US$5 billion — the size of the impending state tax cut for New Yorkers making US$250,000 and more.

There were no immediate reports of any arrests.

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