Occupy Movement: Obama Abandoning Fiscal Policy to the Streets

Posted on November 6, 2011


About the only organized and orderly large crowd these days may be found during the Muslim Hajj.  Participants are fulfilling long-held beliefs and goals.

Crowds in Egypt during the Arab Spring and that sprung up elsewhere in the Near and Middle East had common purpose – to free their countries from decades of dictatorship.  It was easy for them to distinguish the culprits.  Fiscal and legal and moral bankruptcy centered in the person at the top and their cronies.

Cell phones can call people to action, give them a time and a place but after that, it is pure luck or perhaps the culture of the country that determines if the crowd remains a non-destructive group.  In Egypt one unifying principle in the crowd was that violence in Cairo might disturb or destroy their precious and ancient heritage.  But the time may come when this is not considered for a moment.

But what about the aftermath in the above-countries?  We should be mindful that during the protests participants remembered the daily calls to prayer and were on their knees.  We cannot, therefore, be surprised that in the wake of the toppling of their governments that persons with more of a religious identity are making inroads.  The strict structure of their dictator beautifully prepares them to accept the strict laws of a theocracy.

And now in the West countries find themselves home to groups of demonstrators who object to the fiscal policies of their governments – policies that have brought them to the brink of disaster.  The jobless and disenfranchised are calling out from the streets.  They want to bring the so-called 1% of the population to task for having impoverished the 99%.   They haven’t known the poverty of the people in the streets in Cairo and elsewhere in that region and so are far more impatient.  They have come from more care-taker states than their brothers in Cairo and elsewhere.  Communism is a western ideology after all.   Our European literature is awash in characters who were rich having been taught to give in heart and pocketbook – Scrooge or to have it taken – Robin Hood.

The United States and Europe are in the midst of demographic change. We are no longer the European nation that enjoys cultural consensus.  How the people in the streets play out their “occupy” movement here will be instructive to a nation built on laws that formerly came from the consent and participation of the governed.  The Wall Street “Occupy” movement is laser focused on one thing:  Corporate America and its leadership.  Capitalism and our financial system are on trial from the streets.  The free-market system is being thrown out with the Corporate leadership bath water.

Throw out the financial underpinnings of this country and what’s next – the Constitution?  We need to think about what is happening more closely than we have.  These people sleeping in parks are so “foreign” to this society that CNN “embedded” a reporter among them as they do in areas around the globe where our troops have been sent.  We keep trying to get a profile of the people in this movement and it is eluding us.  We keep scanning the dark shadows for some unsavory backer of all of this.  We do not stop to think it may be more than one with more than one ultimate agenda.  And here is the point about a group that cannot be defined:  You don’t know where it is ultimately headed.  Near term it is to batter at the bastions of capitalism – the banks.  And they have had some success in convincing depositors to withdraw funds from the large banks.

But what is next after that? Because of our freedoms in most areas or the mythology of it, the “occupy” group can go anywhere next and this is the danger in this movement.  It is unclear what the ultimate goals of participants really are.  If the movement is to survive the winter, more national and international organization will be in order.  Only order can replace another order – not mob mentality.

And who can we blame for all of this?  Most immediately the current administration that did not draft much significant reform legislation immediately following the meltdown; that did not see to the prosecution of more moguls of the money havens.  They could have begun a process to stem this tide no matter what former administrations had done.  But they had a maniacal obsession with health care reform before the jobs to pay for it had been created.  Job creation begins with the fiscal system and the ease of borrowing funds.  This has been next to impossible in the past 3 years.