Get a load of this video taken by Reason.tv of an Occupy Wall Street demonstration. Now, you must understand that Reason magazine is a libertarian-leaning organization, so I’m sure there was a certain amount of bias in the editing and selection of clips that went into the 6-minute video.
Still, some of the demands are incoherent and based on factually incorrect premises. To be fair, I suppose you could say the same about some of the Tea Party rallies, too. I’d have to go back and look at the record.
Consider some of the comments at this OWS protest:
- I like the sign saying “Please no cameras at this meeting.” Isn’t one of the OWS protesters’ complaints that they weren’t getting adequate media coverage?
- The nerdy guy in the glasses said the Citizens United decision allows “unlimited donations” to campaigns. Wrong. It upholds the rights of corporations to spend on independent political broadcasts during candidate elections, not give to the campaigns themselves. The latter has been illegal for a long time — and still is. Oh, CU also allows labor unions to do the same, but the guy didn’t mention that, perhaps because it doesn’t bother him? Or perhaps because the news articles on Alternet never mentioned it?
- Another guy wants to get us off the monetary system and move us toward barter. Seriously?
- Yet another interviewee wants the government to take over the banks, unless, of course, it happens to be a government run by Republicans. That was a real knee-slapper.
- Did you see the looks on the protesters’ faces when the NYC councilman pointed out that fully 1/3 of the city’s revenues come from Wall Street? It’s as if they’d never even considered where the money comes from to run the city’s social programs and schools.
- As for the anti-bailout guy who said he likes capitalism but that “when you lose, you lose,” I wonder what he would have said if the feds hadn’t bailed out the auto industry and 100,000 union jobs had disappeared. My guess is he had no problem with sending taxpayer cash to GM. But the interviewer didn’t ask him.
Back in the day, I saw an awful lot of dope smoking, so I speak from experience. I’d say there was some pretty good weed floating around that demonstration. And a lot of unemployed people who got up at the crack of noon to join in the fun.