Gas station without pumps

2011 October 12

What the Occupy Wall Street movement is about

Filed under: Uncategorized — gasstationwithoutpumps @ 22:31
Tags: ,

Henry Blodget, in Business Insider, has posted a good set of graphs and charts about the inequitable distribution of wealth in the US, and how it has varied over time, with the very recent past seeing the worst inequities of the past 100 years: CHARTS: Here’s What The Wall Street Protesters Are So Angry About….

In the NY Times, Paul Krugman points out that the mass media outlets are almost entirely controlled by the wealthiest Americans, and so are busy trying to spin the Occupy Wall Street movement as dangerous weirdos: Panic of the Plutocrats.

Last May, Joseph E. Stiglitz, in Vanity Fair, explained how the government has lost its important function of controlling the excesses of the very rich: Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%.

I don’t know whether these messages will be powerful enough to get through to the American people though—the American electorate has shown an amazing ability to be taken in by the never-tax-the-rich crowd.  We still see Prop. 13 coming up very popular in polls in California, even though it shifted almost all the state and local tax burden from the wealthy and corporations to middle-class workers, and has resulted in practically dismembering education at all levels in California.  People still dream that someday they’ll be rich, even though income mobility in the US is at record low levels.

I occasionally see hopeful signs in the actions of grassroots organizations like, but then I get disappointed again when the politicians they help get elected (like Obama) turn around and do everything they can to help out the top 1%.  Three years ago, I believed in Obama’s campaign promises, but now I really wish the Democrats had someone I could trust running in 2012.  But it seems like most of the Democrats have adopted traditional Republican views and the Republicans, to distinguish themselves, have moved over to police-state totalitarian positions.

I don’t want a revolution—I want a return to honest politicians working for the good of the people (there have been some in the past).  I want the California constitution returned to being a constitution and not a pile of badly written initiatives that benefit only the very rich who bought them. But I’m probably not going to get my wishes, because the very rich are convinced that they can either buy the government or destroy it and buy their own armies, and that either way they’ll come out on top, and they own the TV channels that are all most people rely on to form their opinions.



  1. Occupy Wall Street in the end will have no impact because it is mostly college students who don’t vote. The Tea Party was successful not because they strutted around in revolutionary war costumes, but because they voted. In droves.

    Comment by Bonnie MacKellar — 2011 October 13 @ 04:51 | Reply

    • Actually, the Occupy Wall Street movement seems to be somewhat older than college students—more unemployed people.

      The Tea Party was successful because they were parroting a message that the media masters wanted heard (no taxes on anyone! no government regulation!). Unfortunately most of those who vote vote however the TV tells them to.

      Comment by gasstationwithoutpumps — 2011 October 13 @ 08:05 | Reply

      • What I see here in NY is college students. And I agree that the TP’ers were parroting a message, but they voted. Here in my area, which is normally very liberal, a TP’er was elected from the district north of mine because the liberal voters all stayed home, whining that they didn’t get single payer healthcare so why should they vote.

        Comment by Bonnie MacKellar — 2011 October 16 @ 12:04 | Reply

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