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OccupyWallStreet: Naomi Klein explains it all

I saw this video at Suburban Guerilla (H/T Susie Madrak).  It’s an easy to understand explanation of what OccupyWallStreet is all about from Naomi Klein, author of The Shock Doctrine.  The clip is about 7 minutes long.

I am not surprised at the right wing rhetoric that is permeating the blogosphere today.  Here are some of the memes that are mischaracterizing OccupyWallStreet:

1.) It’s a mob.  I think Jon Stewart dispatched this meme Wednesday night with a quick look at how the Tea Party got its name.

2.) It’s all a bunch of college students who are sucking off of their parents.  They want free everything.  This is not true and I have the pictures to prove it.  There are a ton of people over 30.  If you go, you will find someone your age, I guarantee it.  As for college students sucking off their parents, I don’t know what some of these people do for a living but if their parents want to support them in a protest, what’s it to you?

3.) They’re just a bunch of lazy bums.  Ahhh, yes, I can practically smell Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh from here.  There ARE a lot of unemployed people there.  I was one of them.  But the city does have 3G coverage, even if it sucks for a large metropolitan area.   (Which makes me wonder why the infrastructure is so bad in the US) So, while you march, you can keep track of your job database search hits and take phone interviews.  The unemployed would much rather have a job, money, their houses, health insurance.  But all they have is time on their hands and righteous indignation.  So, they help out at a protest and help build a movement.  They do it so you don’t have to.  Thank them.  Clearly, this is a mean spirited attack on working people who through no fault of their own became unemployed.  It’s designed to make us feel bad and embarrassed.  Butcha know what?  “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent”, as Eleanor Roosevelt said.  I don’t really give a flying f%^* what Rush or Glenn or any other moron has to say.  There are a lot of extremely intelligent and hardworking people unemployed right now so I am in very good company.

4.) They want free food, education, housing, healthcare.  I don’t think that’s true.  I think they want to enjoy the fruits of their labor and they don’t want to be exploited by the 1% anymore.  And when you think about it, Americans pay a lot in taxes compared to other countries.  I know Americansdon’t know it because how many of us get to work in another country?  What I mean by a lot is that for the amount of money you pay, you get relatively little.  A comparable amount in a developed European country will get you basic healthcare, a college education at a very affordable cost, maternity benefits Americans can only dream about and many other things.  And it’s not like Americans aren’t already distributing the wealth.  NJ taxpayers get 60 cents back in federal assistance for every dollar we send to Washington.  States that are the reddest and most unequal get far more than their dollars worth of taxes.  You don’t hear New Jerseyans screaming their heads off that Alabamians should join the 21st century but maybe you will in the near future.

I’m sure there will be more.  The right never misses an opportunity to turn Americans agains themselves.  Remember that kid who survived a car crash with severe head injuries and lived only because his poor parents enrolled him and his sister on SCHIP?  Yeah, I think the right called him a blood sucking slacker too at some point.  Fox, Rush, Glenn, and the Republican leadership have absolutely no shame.  They will smear anyone who tries to get between them and the 1%.

But those of you who have already bought into that narrative, what’s in it for you?  After the right uses you to strike back at the occupation, what will it give you?  Petty power over people who are gay or immigrant or female?  Is the right going to take on the bankers?  Put your adult kids to work?  Make your insurance premiums cheaper?  Are you going to get a break on your property taxes?  That last one is hillarious to anyone living in NJ under the Christie regime.  You dodged a bullet when Christie decided not to run for president.  Go ask Rush or Glenn what you get.  We’ll wait.

OccupyWallStreet: Something’s Coming

Good Morning, 99