About 20 Occupy-affiliated protesters crashed a New York state legislative budget meeting Monday morning, but it doesn't sound as if they had much of an audience. Almost as an aside in a blog post about the protest, The New York Times's Thomas Kaplan writes in his final paragraph:
The Occupy protesters seemed considerably more interested in the taxation hearing than members of the State Legislature. As the hearing began at 10 a.m., only 3 of the 207 sitting legislators had shown up.
If a protester mic-checks with no legislator around to hear it, does it make a sound? Actually, at least a few people were around by the time the protest got started, as you can see in this Albany Times Union video. The protesters interrupted the testimony of Thomas H. Mattox from the Department of Taxation and Finance as he answered lawmakers questions while they consider Gov. Andrew Cuomo's budget. The Wall Street Journal reports that the demonstration lasted about 10 minutes, and there were no confrontations or arrests. As The Times's Kaplan notes, "Assemblywoman Aileen M. Gunther, Democrat of Sullivan County, even took out her smartphone to capture the moment." We suppose the protesters' message did get heard, thanks to the presence of reporters, but it sounds like an odd scene in Albany, Monday morning.