- Posted May 6, 2012 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Occupy Wall Street
Flawed or Pointless? pt. 2
Link to Part 1: http://ireport.cnn.com/docs/DOC-786568
For the former I will use the Obama bailouts as an example. I will preface this by saying that I’m not giving an opinion about whether or not they should have happened, but just to point out some facts.
Who were the bailouts directed towards?
Major corporations. Corporations that had grown so large that they could not be allowed to fail.
How many small businesses were bailed out? How many homeowners defaulting on their mortgage? Once you’ve gotten into the 1% all the sudden you are more important than other Americans.
You cited Gates and Buffet as your examples, but you need to realize that the issue is beyond individuals, much of the distaste is directed at corporations.
Occupy does not believe that corporations should be considered people nor money considered speech.
For my latter example I will use lobbying. Lobbying is a very important part of our political process. It allows citizens to bring important issues to their elected representatives.
What happens when corporations are people and money is speech? The average citizen can’t compete.
In 2007 the richest 1% of the American population owned 34.6% of the country’s total wealth and the next 19% owned 50.5%. The top 20% of Americans owned 85% of the nation’s wealth. (http://www.cbpp.org/cms/?fa=view&id=3220)
Take a second to swallow that pill.
I think this gap is not merely “somewhat alarming,” but it is, in fact, dangerous. The top 20% of the United States are capable of running the entire nation. That is not what the founders had in mind for our country. This allows an incredible amount of influence on the politics and economy of our nation from the most affluent, and steps need to be taken to bring back the voice of the middle and lower class.
I’m not indicting the entire 1% for crimes against humanity. I am not wallowing in disgust that the 1% is not gracious enough to give me a job. I am proving myself desirable. But maybe I don’t want a company to hire me. Maybe I don’t want to work at Hardee’s. Maybe I want to live in a nation where I can start my own business, be my own boss, and have an equal opportunity to prove myself, to myself not a company.
That is why I, a 19 year old, middle class, average Jose, attended class while simultaneously supporting the ideas behind the Occupy movement’s “May Day Celebration.”