Occupy Wall Street Movement
Posted: December 2, 2011
I don't understand the Occupy Wall Street movement. The protesting officially began September 17th and has spread throughout the country. But unlike protests of the past, these activists have not yet clarified how they wish to accomplish their goals.
The Occupy movement has identified the one percent of Americans who have doubled their income over the past three decades and that the richest one percent of the population own more than 37 percent of the country's total wealth. But the protesters who are against high unemployment, greed and social and economic inequality have not offered anything other than to gather in mass without a concrete game plan for action.
I am not old enough to remember the 1960s protests and the movement by activists to fight for civil rights. But at least that undertaking had a specific request and offered proposals to achieve equality.
Although there have been a few demonstrations in West Central Wisconsin sympathizing with the Occupy Wall Street rallies, most of the public discourse is taking place on the East and West coasts. Most of the protesting in Wisconsin revolves around the attempt by individuals who are trying to get enough signatures to force a recall election of Governor Scott Walker. And, whether one agrees with the recall effort or not, at least the activists here have a clear mission and have defined a method to accomplish their goal.
I understand the disdain for the undue influence that corporations have on government. I also realize that Wall Street's risky lending practices of mortgage-backed securities which ultimately proved to be worthless caused the economic crisis of 2008, leading to a recession. But I wonder if the money being spent to police and clean the activists' campgrounds could not be put to better use.
I was slightly amused by last week's OccupyXmas protests that were aimed to condemn overconsumption by consumers. The protesters gathered outside big box retailers across the country cutting up credit cards and rallying against all of the money being spent from Thanksgiving through Christmas. However, it doesn't appear that the OccupyXmas movement was very successful. More than $52 billion was spent on "Black Friday " alone and records were also broken this week on "Cyber Monday ". I guess the real message is that even the poorest shoppers can't avoid a good deal.
Your input and constructive criticism is always welcome. E-mail me at: firstname.lastname@example.org