I intended on this post being a very well written, though out piece, but got sidetracked last week and kind of had to leave it in a half-written stage. I no longer really care enough to finish it, but thought you guys might chime in with your thoughts. It's not going to flow at all because I had written each paragraph separately at different times and I have tied them together here.
Original post starts below the line
If you haven't tuned out of the national media juggernaut that is day time cable TV due to useless information overload, you might have noticed that there are some people protesting Wall Street on Wall Street. Well, not just on Wall Street, they're setting up their protests all around the country now - an act of solidarity that misses the point of location (more on that in a minute). I'm sure you've at least heard a little bit about all of this and now I'm weighing in.
In the interest of brevity for those of you who don't want to read much, but tell me I'm an asshole in the comments section below, I'll state the bottom line. Instead of making a positive mark on public opinion, these hypocritical, lazy kids are showing the world how stupid the left's arguments are. Even though unemployment is high, the vast majority of Americans have a job and severely resent those people who refuse to work and instead spend their days bitching about the lack of handouts available to them. What plays well in pockets of big cities, doesn't resonate in the rest of the country. Much like the original Hippie movement, these events are made much bigger than they are by the coverage they receive.
Here's where the nuts and bolts portion of this post starts.
This whole movement started a few weeks ago when an event was organized through social media avenues (more on that in a minute) to have a "sit-in" on Wall Street. It was rather innocuous and mostly provided some comedic relief for New York City specific media. Things turned serious when a group of protesters were maced for no apparent reason and the whole thing was caught on camera. What was a side-bar story, became much bigger and it did so for a few reasons.
I can remember my friend Sito Negron posting something on Facebook about the coverage of the protest. He was frustrated less with the coverage of the protests - of which I made fun of in response to his Facebook post - but the apparent instance of police brutality caught on video that wasn't getting coverage. Negron appealed to me on the brutality aspect of his argument and I was hard pressed to disagree. No matter how much I disliked the people who got maced, they didn't deserve it - the cops were misusing their power - and it could happen to me and it wouldn't be funny. I did not realize that millions of similar discussion were taking place around the country on that video and that buzz would launch the protests into the national spotlight - not as a joke, but as a serious movement.
I'd like to point None of these people are starving. None of them are in such ill health that they can't spend the day chanting and marching. None of these people are without clothing. None of these people are suffering.
Watch the video HERE and tell me these people actually have a point other than they have nothing better to do than standing around in an effort draw attention to themselves. We all know that the media went and found the craziest morons available at the Tea Party rallies and tried to pin their message on the group as whole. What they (the media) were never able to do is track down a Tea Party organizer that gave the answer this "Occupy" organizer gave, which was a clear admission that they do not know what, or why they are protesting. Had he been able to spit out a single catch phrase like "corporate greed," he could have gotten himself, and the movement, off the hook. Instead, he summed up the entire movement with his inability to explain what they were doing there.
It's one thing to ambush the dumbest protesters in the crowd and repackage them as the entire movement, but it's another when they organizer himself is they guy crashing the whole movement.
And let's look at comparisons to the Tea Party for a moment. These people are "occupying" property in a show of civil disobedience - a protest. Tea Partiers weren't protesting per se. They were rallying - most of the time on private property with permission. When in public they did not "occupy" any public place. They requested permission to be there and then abide by the rules. There were no mass arrests, threats on the police or any other kind of shenanigans at Tea Party RALLIES.
I do see one thing that is being overlooked that could tie the Tea Partiers and the Occupiers together - federal bailouts of major corporations. I was at the largest rally for the Tea Party in DC, and I was at the one in El Paso. At both events you had a tremendous amount of anger at the government for bailing out corporation with tax dollars. This is a theme (one of many) that the occupiers are championing as well. It seems as if the media is missing a chance to examine what should be two ideological opposite camp's apparent agreement on one subject.
Somewhere somebody should make a joke about just how many corporations the anti-capitalists had to use in order to organize their protest. Apple, Verizon, AT&T, Microsoft and a plethora of the stated enemy companies made their protest possible by offering a product at a price the bereaved could afford to use. It's ironic in it's most natural and pure form.
Part of the problem with the protests is that they lack any coherent message. This is possibly because most of the people involved have their own agendas and try to use the assembled crowd as a false backdrop of support for their niche issue. You see this in DC a lot with several groups. "Code Pink" and the pro-legalize pot crowd latch themselves onto any assembled group of people whether they are invited or not. It's hilarious to watch a bunch of women in pink shirts, or stoner burnouts absolutely hi-jack a rally for disabled Americans looking for better access to federal facilities such as parks and museums.
To make matters worse for the occupy crowd, the unions have involved themselves in the movement and they threaten to de-legitimize the all of their efforts by making it seem as if the whle thing was "astro-turfing" on behalf of the president. Eventually the protesters will turn on the unions and that's when all hell is going to break loose. This is a zero sum game that does not end with everyone parting ways at sunset...
The occupiers have identified themselves with the violent uprisings in the middle east. Their comparison couldn't be more off if they tried. Nobody believes their plight is anywhere near that of the Egyptians or Libyans. Average Americans find it comical that these college kids would be so stupid as to even try to make a comparison with people who have real loss of liberty. However, the occupiers are growing more full of their own bullshit every day and that's going to lead to them emulating their acts of the people they incorrectly identify with. Yes, this isn't going to end well at all.
The problem with surrounding yourself with a bunch of people who are so delusional as to think that they are the most important group of people on earth and that they have the answer to everything, is that you start to believe it. Sit in a park with a bunch of people becoming drunk on the attention - on the moment in history they see themselves in, and you have a recipe for disaster. When you push things too far you are stuck either admitting you are wrong, going home and feeling an intense sense of embarrassment for the rest of your life, or you turn it in to a zero sum game where they have to remove you and your friends by force. Sit around believing your own bullshit long enough, and you'll think you can take on the cops - and you're wrong... painfully wrong. It's going to get bloody.