Monday, October 03, 2011

Occupy Wall Street is a tea party with brains

NEW YORK (MarketWatch)The revolution just might be televised after all.

More than two weeks after a band of young people began camping out under the shadow of the New York Stock Exchange, the movement to remake America’s inequitable financial system is growing

It’s been called the Woodstock of Wall Street, but that’s hardly an apt comparison. The gathering at Max Yasgur’s farm 42 years ago was built on a generation looking for peace, love, some drugs and acid rock. The kids today are looking for real, tangible change of the capitalist sort. They’re organized, lucid and motivated.

Actually, they have more in common with the tea party movement than the hippie dream, with one key difference. They’re smart enough to recognize the nation’s problems aren’t simply about taxes and the deficit.

They want jobs. They want the generation in power to acknowledge them. They want political change. They want responsibility in a culture that abdicates it. They want a decent future of opportunity.

If that isn’t American, then what is?

Another key difference between today’s kids and their hippie forefathers: they’re willing to gut it out.

Not only is Occupy Wall Street showing no signs of dying out, it’s getting stronger. On Sunday, a night of rain dampened the crowd at Zuccotti Park, but then the sun broke through and they were back at it: challenging police, marching and drawing attention to their cause.

They’re wired and ready. They’re using YouTube and blogs. A newspaper, the Occupied Wall Street Journal, began publishing last week. They meet in the evenings in a “general assembly” to discuss tactics.

Moreover there are signs the Left Coast wants to get into the action. On Sunday a group called Refund California announced a series of protests throughout Los Angeles. On Monday, a teach-in took place aimed at bringing awareness to how Wall Street has worsened California’s budget problems.

On Tuesday, Refund California is going to Orange County for a protest. On Wednesday, the group will target the home of a bank executive. And on Thursday a big bank in L.A. will be the next target. Protests in Chicago this weekend showed the message isn’t lost in fly-over country.................

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