The Occupy Wall Street movement, why it’s not being treated like the Tea Party in the media, and why it has a better chance of success than the anti-globalization campaign

I suspect this may be old news for those of you with cable, but I just happened across this recent episode of the Daily Show dealing with the media’s evolving (and hypocritical) coverage of the Occupy Wall Street movement, and thought that I’d share it.

Speaking of the Occupy Wall Street movement, there’s also a good piece by Naomi Klein in The Nation that I’d like to share. It’s the transcript of her speech yesterday to the protesters on Wall Street. Here’s a clip in which she draws comparisons between what is happing on the street today with what took place ten years ago with the international anti-globalization protests:

…Many people have drawn parallels between Occupy Wall Street and the so-called anti-globalization protests that came to world attention in Seattle in 1999. That was the last time a global, youth-led, decentralized movement took direct aim at corporate power. And I am proud to have been part of what we called “the movement of movements.”

But there are important differences too. For instance, we chose summits as our targets: the World Trade Organization, the International Monetary Fund, the G8. Summits are transient by their nature, they only last a week. That made us transient too. We’d appear, grab world headlines, then disappear. And in the frenzy of hyper patriotism and militarism that followed the 9/11 attacks, it was easy to sweep us away completely, at least in North America.

Occupy Wall Street, on the other hand, has chosen a fixed target. And you have put no end date on your presence here. This is wise. Only when you stay put can you grow roots. This is crucial. It is a fact of the information age that too many movements spring up like beautiful flowers but quickly die off. It’s because they don’t have roots. And they don’t have long term plans for how they are going to sustain themselves. So when storms come, they get washed away.

Being horizontal and deeply democratic is wonderful. But these principles are compatible with the hard work of building structures and institutions that are sturdy enough to weather the storms ahead. I have great faith that this will happen.

Something else this movement is doing right: You have committed yourselves to non-violence. You have refused to give the media the images of broken windows and street fights it craves so desperately. And that tremendous discipline has meant that, again and again, the story has been the disgraceful and unprovoked police brutality. Which we saw more of just last night. Meanwhile, support for this movement grows and grows. More wisdom.

But the biggest difference a decade makes is that in 1999, we were taking on capitalism at the peak of a frenzied economic boom. Unemployment was low, stock portfolios were bulging. The media was drunk on easy money. Back then it was all about start-ups, not shutdowns.

We pointed out that the deregulation behind the frenzy came at a price. It was damaging to labor standards. It was damaging to environmental standards. Corporations were becoming more powerful than governments and that was damaging to our democracies. But to be honest with you, while the good times rolled, taking on an economic system based on greed was a tough sell, at least in rich countries.

Ten years later, it seems as if there aren’t any more rich countries. Just a whole lot of rich people. People who got rich looting the public wealth and exhausting natural resources around the world…

Oh, and speaking of Jon Stewart, I also highly recommend his recent coverage of Sarah Palin’s announcement that she would not be running for President, and how it looks as though the whole “will she, won’t she” campaign was nothing more than an attempt to fleece her teabagging fan club of a few more campaign contributions which could then be spent by her family. It’s truly great journalism, and one would hope that it would lead to an investigation by the Federal Elections Commission.

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17 Comments

  1. TaterSalad
    Posted October 8, 2011 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    The Wall Street protesters seem to be a bit hypocritical it would seem. While protesting, whining, calling friends on their I-Pads, I-Phones and every other electronic device to get their wall street party orgainized, they are using the very items produced by these big bad corporate CEO’s that made them rich. Isn’t that being hypocritcal. Buying these items supported these corporations in a free market system and now they are protesting against them. WTF? Instead of being hypocrites, these protesters should take all of their electronic communication devices and break them up and throw them away in the grabage. That’l show them greedy CEO’s and then you won’t be a full blown hypocrite like you are now!

    http://dancingczars.wordpress.com/2011/10/08/exposing-how-%e2%80%98occupy-wall-street%e2%80%99-was-organized-from-day-one-by-seiuacorn-front-%e2%80%93-the-working-family-party-and-how-they-all-tie-to-the-obama-administration-dnc-democratic-s/

  2. TaterSalad
    Posted October 8, 2011 at 10:17 am | Permalink

    $25.00 donated to the Scott Brown re-election campaign fund: Now for the truth!

    Seems that the President, Captain Bullshit has his panties in a wad.

    http://pajamasmedia.com/ronradosh/2011/10/07/the-meaning-of-occupy-wall-street-the-confusion-on-the-left-and-the-right/

  3. TaterSalad
    Posted October 8, 2011 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    The average “Joe” of America is staying away from the Barack Obama Marxist movement:

    http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/41069

  4. Can you read Tater?
    Posted October 8, 2011 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    Efram Kerfluffle
    Posted October 7, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    Tater sees things in black and white, as do many people who are confused by complexity. He sees people protesting on Wall Street and jumps to the conclusion that they hate corporations, when, in fact, all they are saying is that they want corporations to play by the same rules as the rest of us. He sees a protesters with iPads and goes berserk, calling them naive hypocrites. He can’t conceive of a world where things are complex. Yes, it’s possible to admire Steve Jobs and still hate the fact that GE doesn’t pay taxes. Not everything is simple.

  5. Posted October 8, 2011 at 11:26 am | Permalink

    A short humor piece in support of the protesters:

    http://arthurgraham.blogspot.com/2011/10/in-support-of-occupy-wall-street.html

  6. Posted October 8, 2011 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

    Mark,

    I beg you to ban Tater. His numerous posts fill the “Recent Comments” bar and it’s becoming annoying to have to scroll through all his posts just to see if someone actually said something relevant.

    Pete

  7. Posted October 8, 2011 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, I really hate to do it, Pete. I’ve been running this site for almost 10 years now, and I’ve never had to ban anyone. And, in that whole time, I only had to remove three comments. I take pride in that. I like that this place, for the most part, polices itself. I’ve just run out of options with Tater. As much as I like the idea of having a self-described Tea Party “patriot” around, I don’t know how much more I can take. I think, if he were able to focus, and present coherent thoughts, it would be really great. But he only seems capable of spamming us with with links to ridiculous, unproductive, and often racist articles. Maybe that’s all the Tea Party is, though. Maybe that’s all they’re capable of. I find it depressing. I want to engage the guy, but it doesn’t seem possible. Maybe I could get him to do an email interview with me, and then the readers of this site could vote on whether or not he stays. How does that sound?

    Tater, if you were able to read this far, send my your email address, OK?

  8. Posted October 8, 2011 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

    Mark,

    Dude, fuck it. The guy clearly can’t take a hint. An interview would be interesting from an anthropological point of view, though.

    Maybe there’s someway to just filter his comments into a “Tater bowl” If motivated, people could just go there and read his nonsense on their own.

    Pete

  9. Posted October 8, 2011 at 2:33 pm | Permalink

    I could start a second site, where all of his comments could reside.

  10. Posted October 8, 2011 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    That’s a good idea, since it appears that he doesn’t have one of his own. Maybe he would feel loved.

  11. Posted October 8, 2011 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

    Personally, I find the all-caps, bold-faced disclaimers on Tater’s posts to be at least as bad as the actual posts. I’m otherwise quite happy with the treatment of his comments. I’d ask that, if you make a change, consider toning down the disclaimer text — unbold, and reduce font size to match his comment text. That’ll make it easier to gloss over it while scrolling through comments.

    Wondering if you can rig your “recent comments” sidebar to exclude Tater’s comments as well — should be pretty simple SQL, though I don’t know WordPress well enough to say for sure.

  12. Bob
    Posted October 8, 2011 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    I would just love it if you automatically added “…plus, I love cock!” as a tag to every one of his posts. I sort of do that in my head already.

  13. Anonymous Mike
    Posted October 8, 2011 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    I prefer the phrase “cock snorkeler”.

    As for the double standard concerning how Tea Partiers and the Occupy Wall Street crowd are treated in the media, Alan Colmes had some interesting things to say on FOX today.

    http://mediamatters.org/mmtv/201110080004

  14. Tatersalad
    Posted October 10, 2011 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    Deliberate Improverishment of the Western World. Agenda 21, BaracK Obama and the New World Order all come into play. Can you liberals actually understand this ???

    http://www.rightsidenews.com/2011091414494/us/politics-and-economics/deliberate-impoverishment-of-the-western-world.html

  15. Tatersalad
    Posted October 10, 2011 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    The Spoiled Kids of America. Oh, how true with Occupy Wall Street protesters!

    Spoiled kids and capitalism:

    http://laiglesforum.com/anarchists-and-frightened-police-face-off-in-london/2272.htm

    Exerpt:

    “While many Americans still believe that the main source of economic benefits is a combination of work, ingenuity and risk taking, along with simple notions of supply and demand (commonly known as free market principles—once believed extinct until live specimens were recently found in China), Europeans have been taught since about the end of WW II that the government is where all money, jobs and benefits come from. Some of them also reportedly believe government is where babies come from and where people go when they die.”

  16. Posted October 10, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    18! Wow.

  17. Mr. X
    Posted October 10, 2011 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

    Is it just me, or does Taters seem to be fading away?

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