The Meaning of 'Occupy Wall Street.' The Confusion on the Left and the Right
Hence the ambivalence of New York Senator Chuck Schumer, whose own tepid response is quite different from the endorsement from Bernie Sanders. Schumer, who supports the so-called millionaire tax, is also a favorite of the New York banks and the Wall Street community whose coffers fill Democratic campaign chests. Democrats, Schumer says, should not vilify the rich, even though he supports the current Obama policies that do just that. So in public statements, Schumer says: “‘Populism has sort of a negativity toward the high end, and that's not our intention,’ he said. ‘Our intention is to do things to help the middle class.’” It might not be Schumer’s intention, but he and his party have played right into it, and by now, it is becoming more than difficult for the Democrats to pretend otherwise.
Schumer and others are obviously not too happy when they read reports like that in the WSJ on what it found in yesterday’s Washington, D.C. mobilization:
At a protest off Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C., it was unclear what the protesters stood for, much less if they'd accept political support from the Democratic Party. A man on stage beat on a drum while reciting free-verse poetry lines such as "Revolution is the solution," and "then we can all sit down and have a lollipop." The group at one point participated in Yoga stretches.
So where does our country go? Peggy Noonan notes the response of focus groups of middle-American women who shop regularly at Wal-Mart. Here’s what these women think:
Who are the culprits behind our economic calamity? "The banks and the people who took the loans." But more the banks, because they had, as one woman put it, "the authority." When they gave out the loans, people thought "it must have been OK." People were "lured in" by the banks—don't worry, home values will keep going up—which pocketed the fees and kept walking.
People lampoon the Occupy Wall Street movement as a bunch of marginal freaks, but these women from the heart of the country shared a basic resentment: The banks got bailed out, everyone else was left holding the bag.
Indeed, they have it right. The banks do bear responsibility. When a Republican candidate like Herman Cain says, as he did last night, that those without a job are responsible themselves for their plight because they could become employed if they try harder, and they should “go and get rich,” he only shows his ignorance and stupidity about the plight regular people are in. For once, a man I usually do not agree with, Ron Paul, answered Cain and showed he understands much more what the real issue is. Speaking to Wolf Blitzer, Paul showed that the wealth is going from the poor to the wealthy as a result of the bailout and a “flawed economic system.” The “average person who wants a job” is not responsible, Paul said. It is the result of dependence on “Keynesian economic policy.”
So the problem of the Left is not only that it presents as an answer to the problem a move towards a second stimulus that would fail and leave us further behind. It also wants to move beyond that towards a formal social-democracy based on the failed European model, one that would before long put America in the position Greece is in today. And who would then bail us out -- China?
So I hope that Mitt Romney, who might be the Republican nominee, comes to understand the plight of regular people, and will turn Washington away from the self-defeating policies of the current White House occupant if he is elected our next president.
If he is not, and President Obama has another term in office, get ready for our future -- and look at the riots and strikes occurring in Greece today.