The NYPD said Thursday that three weeks of anti-Wall Street demonstrations have cost the city $2 million in police overtime and defended the use of pepper spray and batons to control rowdy crowds.But remember, this is just an organic grassroots movement. That Obama is quite sympathetic with.
"I think the vast majority of people who protest were peaceful," said Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly.
"But there's clearly a core group of self-styled anarchists - that's what they call themselves - who want to have a confrontation with police."
I've noticed the normally loquacious Michael Bloomberg has been keeping a pretty low profile. He's just waiting on a phone call, apparently. Or is there more to it?
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has been mildly critical of the Occupy Wall Street protesters, suggesting they don't have an open invitation to stay in Zuccotti Park but stopping short of any kind of ultimatum or even aggressive condemnation. That's because the city has no jurisdiction about who can stay in the privately owned park. The park is actually owned by a real estate giant Brookfield Office Properties. And, as Capital New York pointed out on Thursday, the police can't forcibly evict the protesters until Brookfield declares them trespassers, and the company hasn't signaled that it's ready to do that. Its U.S. chairman (and the park's namesake), John Zuccotti, said on Wednesday he was happy with the "festive" atmosphere in the park. But when and if the company is ready to call off the encampment, it has a direct line to the mayor: As the LittleSis blog pointed out, Bloomberg's domestic partner, Diana Taylor, sits on Brookfield's board of directors.We should spread a rumor there's a lot of smoking and salt intake at Zuccotti Park. Bloomberg will have the place flattened in record time.