I dismissed the OccupyWallStreet crowd last week as the usual medly of agitators, rent-a-mobs and students. That might still be the case. But there is something very deep that they’re tapping into that I wanted to unwind while I still can. The movement is already being hijacked by unions and Democrats. Even Obama is trying to claim he’s on OWS’s side, which is, needless to say, hilarious:
Despite his rhetorical attacks on Wall Street, a study by the Sunlight Foundation’s Influence Project shows that President Barack Obama has received more money from Wall Street than any other politician over the past 20 years, including former President George W. Bush.
In 2008, Wall Street’s largesse accounted for 20 percent of Obama’s total take, according to Reuters.
When asked by The Daily Caller to comment about President Obama’s credibility when it comes to criticizing Wall Street, the White House declined to reply.
But before OWS founders beneath its “People’s Front of Judea” organizing principles, there’s something worth noting. As Tim Carney and Jim Harper note, OWS is tapping into the same vein of public anger that the Tea Party is. OWS is mad because business has too much influence in Washington. The Tea Party is mad, by contrast, because Washington has too much influence on business. The thing is, these are not opposing views. And we should not let our political establishment, lazy media and dipshit talk show hosts persuade us that they are. These are the same problem, seen from different angles. Like the blind men and the elephant, we are groping about the same awful mess, just from different perspectives.
Consider his graphic from Harper:
Consider just a few things we’ve seen over the past decade:
This isn’t capitalism; it’s a poor man’s mercantilism. Connected (usually but not always big) businesses donate to Washington; Washington protects connected businesses. And the rest of us get screwed.
Left and right need to figure this out. The Tea Party should not be fighting OWS. We do that and the politicians will laugh their way to our bank accounts. We do that and they’ll become just another arm of the Democratic Party (assuming they’re not already.) We don’t have to agree with even 10% of what OWS wants. But if that 10% includes pulling government’s claws from our economy — creating, as Carney says, a separation beween business and state — let’s go.
The long twilight struggle is not between Left and Right. It’s between the citizens and their government. It’s between those with pull and those without.