Fed up? Want to start making a difference for a change? If so, you can find local Occupy Wall Street events at this link, the unofficial hub for those who want to protest corporate greed and a dysfunctional political system that doesn’t represent you or most ordinary Americans. No one is asking you for a full time commitment. Start by spending an hour asking some questions and talking to some of your neighbors.
Not fed up enough yet? Dana Milbank offered some reasons why you might want to reconsider in a recent column:
American companies are sitting on $2 trillion in cash while nearly 15 million of their countrymen are out of work. And Washington does nothing, in large part because vast swaths of the town are controlled by corporations.
Some 5,400 congressional staffers have joined lobbying outfits in the last decade, according to a LegiStorm study, and 605 current congressional staffers have lobbied in the last decade. The Center for Responsive Politics counts 328 Obama officials who have already passed through the revolving door to corporate riches. Of the 120 lawmakers who departed from Congress last year, 39 are now in the lobbying trade.
One reason may be the Supreme Court’s 2010 Citizens United decision that allowed Wall Street, and the rest of corporate America, to, well, occupy the public square. When that decision came down, it was almost as though big business said: We’re not even going to pretend any more. We run this country.
Agree, but still think the two political parties are a better bet to save the day? In case you hadn’t noticed, Republicans think people exercising their constitutional rights are a “mob” (Eric Cantor) or “anti-American” (Herman Cain) or “class warriors” (Mitt Romney). Of course, Romney and Cain are now trying to parse their original comments, but those first comments are telling indeed.
And while it’s true some Democrats have expressed a little empathy for those speaking out, the guys who run the Obama administration on a day to day basis like Bill Daley and Tim Geithner could care less what you think. They only listen to people with big money.
So, yeah, sure, we do have two major parties. But one doesn’t have a brain or a heart and the other doesn’t have a spine or balls. Counting on either of them to do the right thing left to their own devices seems kind of risky to me. That’s why you need to get involved right now.
So that’s my little sermon for the week 🙂 and I’ll just leave you with one old song, one editorial well worth reading, and that terrific cartoon up above by Brian McFadden, who writes The Strip for the New York Times. He was nice enough to give me permission to reprint it here so be sure to visit his web site and take a good look around. And be sure to click on that cartoon to see the whole thing if you haven’t already done so!
As the Occupy Wall Street protests spread from Lower Manhattan to Washington and other cities, the chattering classes keep complaining that the marchers lack a clear message and specific policy prescriptions. The message — and the solutions — should be obvious to anyone who has been paying attention since the economy went into a recession that continues to sock the middle class while the rich have recovered and prospered. The problem is that no one in Washington has been listening. Read more.