Who are these 99%-er people?
From The Washington Post:
“It’s not that 99 percent of Americans want a revolution,” Ezra Klein wrote Tuesday. “It’s that 99 percent of Americans sense that the fundamental bargain of our economy — work hard, play by the rules, get ahead — has been broken, and they want to see it restored.”
Almost 15 days later, the submissions are appearing at a more rapid pace. At the same time, thousands of people can now protest in their home cities, as Occupy Wall Street has spread nationwide.
Voicing opposition to everything from corporate greed and bank foreclosures to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and unemployment, the Web site Occupy Together estimates there are now “Occupy” movements in 291 cities.
As the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations move across America, I am becoming more and more convinced that this is a unique movement and isn’t just your usual professional demonstrator and anarchists. Yes, some of them are there. They have to be somewhere. However, more and more people in that sea of folks seem to be Americans who are just frustrated by foreclosures, joblessness, political rhetoric that misses the point, and general malaise concerning their fate in their America.
It is in the interest of the tea parties, the GOP and some Democrats to dismiss these people as kooks, commies, pinkos, anarchists, and professional agitators (that’s what they used to call them back in the day). Why? Because Occupy Wall Street (OWS) could end up being a huge groundswell of EveryAmerican who lacks the face of any political party and who just wants to put a stop to the absurdities and obstructionism going on in this country. Obviously the tea parties want to be the new kid on the block, but they aren’t really. They are just another branch of very conservative Republicanism, despite protests to the contrary.
Obama gets it and for that, he will be further vilified. He may get some mud on him over it but in the long run, those propping up the 1% will be the losers. As various conservative media lambasted the president for not demonizing the protesters, conservative fear began to crystalize. The rules of the game are changing.
Trying to brand these demonstrators all as the great unwashed isn’t going to fly. We can’t blame it all on unions and on college kids. They are out there but they aren’t the whole enchilada. They have their grouses for sure. But so do people who have been gouged by the financial industry, the mortgage industry, immigration policy, and a host of other standards that kick the 99% rather than help them up. Basically, this group represents Americans who played by the rules only to get thrown under the bus and to find out the rules have changed and the goal posts have been moved.
I believe I have seen some boomers out there in the crowd also. Don’t expect this movement to fizzle out. Expect it to gather steam, sophistication and direction. Tea party, sleep with one eye open for sure. “Plurality is our strength,” is a very strong statement. Some of that lack of focus seems a little more intimidating now when viewed through the eyes of plurality.