Monday, October 10, 2011

Occupy Wall Street?

I'm protesting ugly trophies tied to headlights!
The Occupy Wall Street protest reminds me of the scene in the 1953 film "The Wild Ones" where a young woman asks a motorcycle gang leader played by Marlon Brando, "Hey Johnny, what are you rebelling against?"  Tough guy Brando answers, "Whaddya got?"  The Zucotti Park protesters risk becoming irrelevant if they can't come up with a cohesive message (and fast - both the park owners' patience and the NYPD's overtime budget are running low).  They apparently have lots of support across a broad spectrum of America because so many have been hurt by the financial meltdown of 2008 and its sequelae.  Even your humble scribe supports OWS (so far) because I want the sub-prime mortgage slicing-and-dicing, bundling-and-flogging WS hotshots and their incompetent regulators to do time if laws were broken.  However, I'm not a trade unionist or anarchist, or a supporter of numerous other groups camped out under the OWS banner.  Paul Krugman notes that some of the protesters are parodies of themselves - the drumming, the dancing, the throwback-hippie garb a la Haight-Ashbury.  He also agrees that the protesters need to be focused (on debt relief for average Americans and infrastructure spending in his view.)  As I said, I'd like the focus to be about corporate crime and public malfeasance, but then I have a roof over my head.  It will be interesting to see where this all goes.

The Good News:  The NYPD is showing Toronto and Vancouver police forces how it's done.