[Marxism] Arrested at the Halliburton Shareholder's meeting

usman x sandinista at shaw.ca
Fri May 21 16:01:59 MDT 2004

-----Original Message-----
From: Jon Frederick

I'm out on $500 bond on $5000 bail. Ouch! But we were locked down--covered
in fake blood-- shouting in their faces for 35 minutes, delayed the
meeting for at least twenty minutes, and got national news coverage.

For video of me hurling verbal abuse at shareholders, browse

Most other news media reported 500 demonstrators outside. The chants were
great soundbites, but the best part was actually lecturing and
pontificating at them. "You bribed our government to start a war based on
false pretenses for personal gain." My favorite chant was, "Make More
Ethical Investment Decisions."

This corporation received multibillion dollar no-bid contracts from an
administration whose vice president is still on the company payroll. They
pay Americans $100,000/year to do reconstruction jobs that Iraqis would do
better for $10,000/year, and they're not even actually rebuilding the
country. These capitalist pigs are profiting off the maiming and death of
Iraqi children, our service men and women, and their own employees. This
is psychopathic corporate welfare and socialism for the rich. I consider
myself priveleged to have the option to resist this fascism nonviolently.

I'm accepting donations for legal expenses (like, $50-$100 would be
helpful; paypal: smiile at psynet.net). This one has already hurt
financially. I'm facing a class A misdeameanor which could have a $5000
fine and six months in jail.

Other Coverage:

Protests cause stir at annual meeting
Houston Chronicle

Halliburton's Lesar, lightning rod
Commentary: CEO's job defending the indefensible
CBS Marketwatch

Anti-war protest targets Halliburton
Financial Times

Five Protesters Arrested at Halliburton Meeting
Reuters (SJ Mercury News, SF Chronicle, Miami Herald, Houston Business
Journal, Globe and Mail, CNN, MSNBC, Washington Post, etc.)

Halliburton faces protests
Associated Press (Atlanta Journal Constitution, San Diego Union Tribune,
LA Times, etc. )

Protesters roast Halliburton over war contracts
Montreal Gazette

Halliburton Shareholders Meet while Protestors Gather

Halliburton Actions
Www.houstonindymedia.org (lots of photos)

Five Protesters Arrested at Halliburton Meeting
Wed May 19, 2004 02:05 PM ET

By Matt Daily and Erwin Seba

HOUSTON (Reuters) - Five people were arrested as hundreds of protesters
chanting "war profiteers" converged on Iraq contractor Halliburton Co.'s
annual shareholder meeting on Wednesday.

The four men and one woman arrested were charged with trespassing after
they entered the downtown Houston hotel where the meeting was being held
and handcuffed themselves to railings, a police spokeswoman said.

In a prepared statement, Halliburton said it respected the rights of
protesters to demonstrate, but said it would continue its work in Iraq
under the U.S. military contracts.

"Even if they don't have the facts right, they have a right to speak up,"
Halliburton spokeswoman Wendy Hall said in the statement.

Mounted police pushed back a group of about 30 protesters who were trying
to block traffic in front of Halliburton's executive offices about two
blocks from the hotel.

Halliburton's engineering and construction arm, KBR, formerly known as
Kellogg Brown & Root, is the U.S. military's largest contractor in Iraq,
with contracts that could eventually be worth $18 billion.

In the past year, 35 KBR employees have been killed in Iraq and another
100 wounded, Chief Executive and Chairman Dave Lesar told shareholders,
but the company would "stay the course" of supporting the U.S. military in
the field.


"Halliburton continues to be in a very unique position, I believe probably
the most scrutinized company in corporate America today, and certainly a
lightning rod for a number of issues," Lesar told reporters after the

On Monday, military auditors said they would suspend $159.5 million in
payments for food services billed by KBR because of incomplete files and
bills submitted by its subcontractors.

The Pentagon is also investigating whether KBR overcharged for fuel
brought into Iraq.

Protest organizers said the company had become a symbol of the U.S.
occupation in Iraq, and questioned its relationship with its former chief
executive, Vice President Dick Cheney.

"I think this is the worst example of cronyism. It sends a terrible
message around the world," Medea Benjamin, co-founder of women's group
Code Pink, told Reuters.

At the meeting, shareholders approved a proposal to allow the company to
increase its authorized common stock by 67 percent to 1 billion from 600
million. The company currently has about 440 million shares outstanding.

Halliburton has not indicated whether it would issue new shares, but said
the measure would give it the flexibility to issue or reserve common stock
without calling a special shareholder meeting.

The proposal also authorized the issuance of 5 million preferred shares.
The company currently has no outstanding preferred shares.

A shareholder proposal sponsored by the United Association S&P 500 Index
Fund requiring the chief executive officer and chairman positions be held
by different people failed to gain approval. Dave Lesar currently holds
both titles.

Another proposal brought by New York City Police and Fire Departments
pension funds for the company to address financial and reputational damage
from its operations in Iran also failed to pass.

The company has said its Iranian operations did not harm the company's
reputation, and were run through a foreign subsidiary and so did not
violate a ban on U.S. companies operating in states the U.S. government
has designated as "sponsors of terrorism."

© Reuters 2004. All Rights Reserved.

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