Double You Tee Eff America! What is going on and how did it get this bad? Not since Rodney King met the business end of a billy club have we seen the police this out of control. Not since the Vancouver Canucks lost the championship have we seen this much chaos in the streets, the Canucks are a hockey team by the way. Yeah, I don’t really get it either. If you don’t have that thing the kids use to tweet each other called the internet (which is a fad that probably won’t catch on) then you’re probably wondering what all the fuss is about aren’t you. Well there is a scantily televised, oft made fun of battle going on and it’s taking place right here in the streets of the United States.
The people of this country have started to take to the streets…and I guess the city parks…to protest and the powers that be and their three piece suits are getting upset. So is this internal struggle similar to the civil rights movement that protested on behalf of African Americans and their struggle against second class citizenry? Or is it more like the struggle of the Civil War where brothers fought one another over the right to own other human beings? Well…it’s sort of like both of them.
So what is it you ask!? This struggle is about income inequality, I don’t know what a Canuck is. Ok, it doesn’t sound very scary. In fact it sounds like something you would read up on for your gen-ed accounting class mid-term exam. Doesn’t exactly sound like apartheid…at least not yet. But the shit is starting to hit the segregated fan. But before we stand headlong into it lets check our notes. By the way, still not talking about the Canucks.
So what is income inequality? Well, to over simplify the definition, one guy has more money than the other guy. Not a mission to Mars or anything, we all understand this. Some of us are Kobe Bryant and some of us are Joe the Plumber. And I think for the most part we’re all ok with that. Sure, we would all love to play in the NBA or be a movie star or get paid like Scrooge McDuck by gambling on stocks but most people will pretty much settle for putting food on the table and going out to see the latest Twilight movie once in a while (There’s a new one of those like every third Saturday of the month right?) So what’s the problem?
Scrooge McDuck is the problem what with his fucking unending greed and his fucking tower of money and his poor nephew that has to go into the navy to support himself. You can make a cartoon with rich Ducks about it if you want but the startling truth is that the top 3 tenths of the top 1 percent of the population have the majority of the wealth. That means for every 997 people avoiding name brands to save a buck in this country, we have 3 Scrooge McDucks rolling around in more money that they can fit in their palatial mansions.
With so much of the wealth tilted to such a few well dressed cock suckers, you better believe that they can buy a whole lot of love that the rest of us eating frozen dinners can’t…not to mention politicians, judges, religious figures, rule book changes, TV stations, newspapers and enough propaganda to make about half the people in this country think that the actual problem is that public school teachers get to retire.
So what’s the real reason that wealth in this country is skewed like a Fox News poll? There is almost certainly no one good reason. Unless of course you count the unbridled greed and disdain for other human beings that some of these one percenters carry in their back pocket right next to their platinum Discover cards. No, the real problem is that there has been a concerted effort by these people to rig the game in their favor over the past 30 to 40 years…most notably since the Reagan administration…but I think we covered that (Ronald Reagan). But the real slap in the impoverished face is that they have somehow convinced a large percentage of us separate but equals to fight their battles for them.
They claim that they are taxed too much to hire us, so we’ve lowered their taxes until they are about a third of what they were for the better part of a century…then they still don’t hire us. They claim that there is too much regulation on their industries so we remove them in a move that is essentially giving them permission to break the law by taking away the law. They claim that unions are socialist organizations. So we allow them to do away with collective bargaining so they can lower our wages. They claim that we just can’t afford to let people retire in their 60s anymore because human life expectancy is rising and retirement plans are too expensive…unless we let them handle our retirement money, then they’ll think about it.
They claim that trade isn’t free enough for business and no one wants to be anti-business so we agree. Then, faster than you can say WTO, they pack up your job and send it to communist China (or if you said NAFTA then they pack up your job and send it to Mexico). Then they pay those people a dollar a day to do our jobs and we get pissed at China for selling us their cheap pieces of plastic. They claim that schools are too expensive to be run publicly, so we better let the corporations run our schools because only they know how to simultaneously educate and turn a profit and then we wonder how our kids became walking commercials.
They change the entire nature of understood economics to explain why we the people have no money and therefore there is no demand to drive job creation. Instead of being outraged, the public cries out for a business President in order to make a safe environment for the “job creators” to trickle the money down to the rest of us…you know, the way you trickle down turkey to your dog from the dinner table on Thanksgiving.
And what a fitting metaphor for the way the rest of us live our lives. Surviving off of the scraps that the wealthiest d-bags aren’t swimming in. And now our leash is being tightened and no one is speaking up about it. During the 1800’s, as America was starring down the barrel of the Industrial Revolution, many Americans called bull shit on what would become the way of life we all now participate in. Yes, the system we have now, where we go to work for a while and get just enough money to force us to come back the next day while just barley covering our expenses was called slavery in the 1800’s. These days, the McDucks tell us that we should be thankful to even have a job, but back then they called it Slave Wages. Even the people in the south who, ya know, actually owned slaves made this point saying, yes, we own our workers but you rent yours.
But now some people have decided that they aren’t satisfied with being rented out by the point three percenters like an over sized sofa from Rent 2 Own. At some point we’ll cover all of these bent cards in the future in much greater detail. But before this turns completely into a rant we should jump back on topic…ok, it’s totally a rant but I think the point has been made that there is plenty to be rant about.
And this is why the peasants have started to revolt. They have taken up their proverbial torches and pitch forks and headed to the metaphorical scene of the crime…Wall-Street. They call themselves Occupy Wall Street or OWS as they call them in the tweets. In the great tradition of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr., they have parked themselves right where Scrooge steals your pensions and buys his nine dollar lattes. Civil disobedience at its finest. Wall-Street has no choice but to pass by people who blame them for this train wreck of a country and to see the faces of the people who they steal from with impunity.
Since we have a long history of success through civil disobedience in this country we should expect a joyous response to the Occupy movement right? I mean, everyone still remembers Rosa Parks-herself at the front of the fucking bus right? No, apparently no one remembers that or anything like it. Or maybe people laugh at the idea because that is what the response to OWS has been like, a bad joke.
The media was all of a sudden ablaze with stunning questions like…where do the protestors pee…and…how often are the protestors taking a shower…and …why don’t these bums get a job? There are no fucking jobs, that’s why there’s a protest in the first place! Think about these responses for a second and put them in a historical context. What if someone said, “Hey, that Gandhi sure was a great guy”, and a TV news anchor said, “Yes, but where did Gandhi take his shits, that’s what I want to know.” Or what if a history teacher was talking about Rosa Parks and a student raised their hand and said, “How often did she shower?” Or maybe when the new Martin Luther King Jr. statue was unveiled, the MC went on and on about how “King should have just shut up and got a job”?
As insulting and petty as all of that was, it didn’t stop there. The OWS movement has been called socialist, un-American and anti capitalist. It’s clear that someone is getting nervous about the occupation of Wall-Street. Protesters spread out all over the country. It was time for the one percent to step up their game. Clearly, purchasing our media and using them to fling cheap jokes to sway the simple minded wasn’t cutting the Dijon mustard. It was time to use the politicians they had purchased to voice their opposition of the people they are supposed to work for.
In a regular who’s who of paid off elected officials and those seeking office, politicians began lining up to disparage the growing democratic movement. Herman Cain stated that, “it’s their own fault they don’t have jobs”. Eric Cantor said that he is, “worried about the growing socialist mobs on Wall-Street”. And in a case of unbridled irony, the Illinois House of Representatives shot down a motion that would allow the individuals of the OWS movement to exercise their freedom of speech. Yes, the democratically elected body of representatives serving Illinois decided to not allow freedom of speech. Representative Ed Sullivan Jr. (Republican) stated that he believed that the OWS protestors were murdering people and reiterated that they were un-American…after he voted to suppress their first amendment rights. Representative Roger Eddy (Republican) stated that OWS was demonizing corporate America. Well, we certainly know where his loyalties lie.
But still, OWS wouldn’t go away. It was time for a rare display of force from the 1%. This would be the same kind of force that caused us to invade Iraq to secure corporate oil profits…only much closer to home. On the 15th of November at 1 AM, the storm troopers descended upon Zuccotti park and blitzkrieged their way through the thousands of protesters, assaulting citizens and reporters alike…and apparently at least one member of the city council. Reporters were either barred from getting close to the battle or assaulted on site by the police. Television news stations were ordered to land their helicopters in order to prevent the public from seeing this military assault on its own people.
The brain child of this invasion, Mayor of New York, Michael Bloomberg, managed to not only take back Wall-Street by force but also to complete the totalitarianism trifecta. Freedom of speech, gone. Right to assemble, history. Freedom of the press…not in this country. After shitting on the Bill Of Rights and then quickly wiping his ass with the constitution, Mayor Bloomberg stated, “We’ve tried this democracy thing for a while and, upon review, we’ve decided to go in a different direction.” Ok, he didn’t say that, I made that one up. Sorry, couldn’t help it. But in a recent speech he did boast that the NYPD was, “His own private army”, and that it was the “7th largest in the world”. By the way, this is a mayor speaking, not the dictator of a third world country as you might suspect.
Since the 15th of November, OWS sites all over the country have been raided by police in riot gear in what seems to be a fairly well coordinated plan of attack. Stories continue to flood in about pregnant women being beaten up, veterans being shot by the police, old ladies being pepper sprayed and of course journalists being arrested for attempting to report all of the above. Shows you who is really in control doesn’t it when the police stop serving and protecting the people and start serving the interest of a few assholes who have all the money.
The people of OWS have no other outlet to air their grievances except to march in the streets. They don’t have lobbyists and apparently have very little in the way of political support. OWS is a natural progression for change. People have consistently enacted change through protest and civil disobedience. But now that the army of Wall-Street has become involved, this could turn ugly. The problems haven’t been addressed and they are only going to get worse. If OWS fails to implement change because the powers that be continue to use violent force against them then we run the risk of having one of those nasty, French style revolutions. I think we all remember how that turned out. The 1% lost a lot more than their power over the people. It’s a little hard to imagine how sick of this shit you have to be to drag people out of their mansions and their private jets and cut their heads off but that’s what the French did.
But we now know that the rest of the world is sitting up and taking notice because we got a letter from the United Nations asking President Obama why he lets our police treat us like such dicks. We’ve yet to hear his response.
So you see, there is a battle and you’re losing it. How do I know that you personally are losing the battle? Because you’re here, reading this blog. Scrooge McDuck doesn’t read blogs, he spends his free time swimming in money laughing at human suffering and the idea of cutting people off of unemployment. And the only thing you can do about it is hope for supernatural intervention of the festive type or march yourself downtown and occupy a Wall-Street. Try not to get shot.