Why Occupy Wall Street Is Going To Win
On Real Time host Bill Maher accused the right of living in the past when it comes to Occupy Wall Street, but most importantly, he explained to them why Occupy Wall Street is going to win.
After debunking the right’s hippie characterization of Occupy Wall Street, Maher said, “There’s not going to be a repeat of what happened last time the hippies were in the streets. Those hardhats that you’re depending on to turn against the lousy hippies, here’s what they’re doing now. They’re cheering them on, because now the hardhats are just as broke as everybody else. These people down there, they’re not the counterculture. They’re the culture. They don’t want free love. They want paid employment. They don’t hate capitalism. They hate what’s been done to it, and they resent the Republican mantra that the market perfectly rewards the hard working and punishes the lazy, and the poor are just jealous mooches who want a handout. Yeah, because if there is one group of people who hate handouts, it’s Wall Street.”
The right has tried everything to turn the tide of public opinion against Occupy Wall Street. They have claimed that the protests are filled with crime and drugs. They have labeled the movement anti-Semitic, and the people involved in it lazy, dirty, hippies. Despite their daily attacks this movement has continued to grow, and Bill Maher put his finger on exactly why.
Occupy Wall Street continues to be successful because it isn’t a movement of people, it is the people. The right does think that this is the 1960s all over again, and they can get those middle aged white suburban Americans to rally against the youth, but the Occupy Wall Street movement isn’t divided by age. This isn’t old versus young, or white versus black. The Occupy movement is something different.
The economic devastation caused by the corrupt behavior of Wall Street impacted Americans across age, race, and geographic lines. The only people who profited from the great economic collapse of 2008 are those who caused it. The rich have gotten richer, and they have seized control of our political system in order to not only maintain their status, but also to take away resources from those beneath them.
What really pushed the 99% over the edge wasn’t that rich have gotten richer, but that the one percent has turned capitalism into a weapon to be used against everyone beneath them.
The right keeps assuming that there is some sort of large natural constituency out there waiting to be mobilized against these protests. They dream of finding the magic words that will stop the protesters and protect their beloved one percent, but there aren’t any magic words. There isn’t a talking point out there that can derail Occupy Wall Street.
The exploited class is rising up to seek justice, and whether Bill Maher realizes it or not, he perfectly explained why Occupy Wall Street is going to win.
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An individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law.