Occupy Wall Street

Discussion in 'Every Day Debating' started by Kelmourne, Nov 15, 2011.

  1. Kelmourne

    Kelmourne The Savage Hippy

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    I noticed there wasn't a thread on the Occupy movement yet. I'd like to hear what the forum thinks about it as a whole. Do you support it? Hate it? Agree with the ends but not the means?

    Personally, I think it is generally a good idea, but they just aren't doing enough things that actually cause concrete change. They've been occupying zuccotti park for 2 months now and that has certainly sent a message to the government. But with the recent evictions, if they don't diversify their methods they are going to lose this fight without gaining an inch of ground. Any thoughts?
     
  2. Anduil

    Anduil New Member

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    Americans copy European guys... We are on streets everyday... Time for a global revolution.... This crisis is global we need to do something about it and stop sending sms or e mails. Of course its a good move! and congratulations to these people who started this protest.
     
  3. bloodfiredeath

    bloodfiredeath Die by the Sword

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    To be honest I have not really been taking too much notice, however the general feeling I get is that people are protesting for the rich to be taxed more and no more bailouts for banks etc is that a correct analysis??
     
  4. Kelmourne

    Kelmourne The Savage Hippy

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    Basically, they want to end corporate donations to political parties, an end to bailouts for corporations that have acted irresponsibly, as well as a general increase in regulation of the corporations (Apparently some corporations used tax loopholes to end up paying negative taxes, I.E. getting money from the government when they owed them).

    A bunch of other protesters have used this as an opportunity to push their individual agendas, but these are the core issues.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2011
  5. bloodfiredeath

    bloodfiredeath Die by the Sword

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    Sounds like a fair reason to protest.
    I think I have located the original ideals of the movement, which are allegedly as follows;

    -Repeal Bush tax cuts
    -Tax people based on income – Progressive tax structure as to not rip off the poor
    -Restore Glass-Steagal bank regulations
    -Conduct investigations on all financial and other corporate institutions involved in bailout
    -Tax Wall Street insider transactions
    -Abolish Corporate Lobbying – lobbyers can write letters
    -Penalize outsourcing and exporting of jobs – the most popular of the demands
    -End the war in Afghanistan – estimated $300 million per day price tag
    -Restore economic justice to all Americans – over-reaching concept


    In regards to taxing the rich more, I quickly looked into the facts and found that as of 2008, the top 1 percent of Americans paid 38 percent of federal income taxes and the wealthiest 10 percent paid almost 70 percent of federal income taxes. However they earned they earned 90% of the money. So on that basis I presume people believe they should pay 90% of the taxes??
    On the flip side these people (Excluding those who inherit everything) possibly became successful after coming up with a vision, working their asses off, employing hundreds of people (middle-class) in the process, making a ton of money, investing it, saving it, spending it on other goods and contributing to the wealth of their country's economy. So should they be hit harder with tax??
     
  6. ~Elladan~

    ~Elladan~ A Elbereth Gilthoniel

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    There's certain elements of their 'demands' that I think anyone/everyone could agree with ~ especially when it comes to corporate greed.

    As an example, the UK like many other countries is cutting spending, payrises are minimal, on ice or pay is falling and yet against that backdrop directors took a 50% payrise last year even when many companies are themselves struggling http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-15487866 That level of reward is not only totally indefensible in most cases but really insensitive when their staff and customers are seeing real incomes falling.

    My main anti though is that the protestors don't seem to have any realistic proposals for change or even agree what their demands are beyond vague 'we want what you've got' themes. How many of those protesting are genuinely in a position to 'preach' to the wider society when they contribute little or nothing themselves ~ I accept that's a sweeping generalisation! We'd all like more for less but that's why personal, corporate and sovereign debt is where it is. Fairer distribution of wealth is fine in theory too but show an example of where a nation has successfully applied it, communism was hardly a rip-roaring success! How far too does that re-distribution go? The developed nations enjoy standards of living way beyond most of the world's population. How much are you prepared to give up to level the playing field? Would you accept 30% of your pay so that the rest of the world can catch up? The honest answer is no, many who are sympathetic would soon lose interest when they're not a gainer but a loser.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2011
  7. Firiath

    Firiath Halfling barbarian

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    Some time ago I read a lot of the posts on wearethe99percent.tumblr.com and my first reaction was shaking my head - both because of the people protesting and what they are protesting. Most of these people complain about their enormously high medical bills. I do not understand why in 2010 Americans whined about health care/insurance being socialist and now a majority turns out to be needing the health care reform. I'm not an expert on this, so please correct me if I'm not making sense here.
    There are also a lot of people protesting with extremely high debts because of student loans, people who have not been able to find a job after studying and who are blaiming the "system" for it. This might sound arrogant and is surely only true for a small number of those people, but perhaps they should have studied the job market before deciding (what) to study, just to make sure they'd at least have a chance to find a job that helps them pay off their debts.
    Another problem for a number of those people is their fear of losing their houses because without a job they can hardly afford their lifestyles. Well, maybe some of them, those who don't have (big) families, should consider moving into a flat or apartment - consider their lifestyles, simple as that. Why do all Americans need to live in houses, even if their families only consist of two or three people? Again, please correct me if I'm getting something wrong here.
     
  8. Sparrow

    Sparrow Well-Known Member

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    Let me preface this by saying that I'm a no bones about it Liberal.

    I feel about the Occupy movement much the same way as I do about the Tea Party movement... a bunch of whiney bitches blaming the government for their own failures. Folks, we live in the Age of Entitlement. Too many people believe they're entitled to success simply because they've obeyed the rules, or are well educated, or hard working, and my favorite... "because I'm an American". As if it's a birth right. It's narcissism run riot; it's replacing real friendship with a Facebook and Twitter account, it's plastic surgery, it's reality television when it's alright to laugh at someone being humiliated, it's the here-and-now-me-first decadence that has become not only tolerated, but acceptable. These are the people on the front lines of the Occupy movement.

    The Occupy movement isn't a rebellion against the fat cats on Wall Street and the inequities of our political system; it's a bunch of iPhone iPad wielding Generation Me twats who ought to get their goddamn lazy butts back to work, or more likely, go back to living with mommy and daddy.


    You're not wrong, in fact you've got it exactly right.
    It's the whole "American Dream" that so many people thought was automatic and just there for the taking. Too many people in this country obtaining the American Dream on credit, and now the bill is come due. Are the banks and financial institutions, and our government that's supposed to oversee them to blame for our current economic situation, hell yeah... but so is every idiot that ran up insane personal debt, bought a home they couldn't afford, a car they didn't need, and don't see how the rampant greed on Wall Street is so very different from their own greed.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2011
  9. ~Elladan~

    ~Elladan~ A Elbereth Gilthoniel

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    ^ I agree with your post Sparrow 100% ~ you could quite easily substitute 'British' for 'American'.

    It's a shame someone in authority hasn't the balls to come right out and say it too, but then that would inevitably mean they're hounded out.

    I recently met up with an old friend from school who was full of 'facebook this' and 'facebook that', no real-life at all, then he wondered why he hadn't met 'Mrs Right' yet. No doubt these things have their place, as do mobile phones etc but some seem to use it as a substitute for reality complete with an artificial persona. That's a bit off-topic though!
     
  10. Sparrow

    Sparrow Well-Known Member

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    It's only slightly off topic because these social networks feed this quasi reality that so many people live in and what in this case has led to a political movement of sorts. There's nothing wrong with protesting what certain very wealthy people have done to our economy and the government corruption that allowed it free reign, but it's the complete lack of personal responsibility I have trouble stomaching. We've made some of the very same mistakes with overspending and enjoying a lifestyle we couldn't afford... but we dealt with it by changing our buying habits and paying off the personal debt we had run up. I had the same temptation to shake my fist at the sky and blame these people or that institution, but in the end our family made some difficult decisions three years ago and boy are we glad we did.
     
  11. Blackness

    Blackness Well-Known Member

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    If it'll help bring down the laughable concepts of representative democracy and free market, I'm all for it.
    Still a long way, though.
     
  12. Turambar

    Turambar Harebrained Staff Member

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    Well, so far I think it's all a bit weird. So, this is a protest of people who, generally, disagree. It's clear that they don't make part of the top/leading 1%. But what exactly that 1% means and who is part of it is rather unclear. They don't have an agenda. I fact, I'm rather sure they don't know what it is they exactly want. It's one of those movements which is against, not providing any answers in their frustration. It doesn't at all make sense to me except, possibly, that people find that, given the fact that we all live in a democracy, we should have something to say about the ways of the world.

    It's rather interesting to see how the movement came to be. It's clear that it is mirroring movements in Tunisia, Egypt and other Islamic autocratic states. Now, these are people who have everything to fight for. Freedom; livelihood. A future. There are all grassroot movements which grew out of necessity to change. To make something of life. The success rate has been rather low, but the thought of a peaceful people's revolution is rather romantic (even though Syria, Oman and Libya have become quite violent). Via concerning citizens, mostly in the Mediterranean area, about the future and economic status of their respective democracies, it spread to the US - ironically self-proclaimed most free nation on earth. Where, one would assume, issues such as there are in the middle east, would be absent. In fact, I would guess that the "Occupiers" in the various Muslim states would perfectly settle with any situation the US Occupiers are in on a day-to-day basis.


    I fear that we will remember the Arabic spring and that Occupy will be a footnote in history. Likely at the entry of the Arabic spring; possibly at the entry for Credit Crisis.
     
  13. bloodfiredeath

    bloodfiredeath Die by the Sword

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    People can always purchase private health cover. I do and my country has "free" healthcare, sure it costs extra, but piece of mind always does.

    This has always shit me! People go and study at Uni and then automatically expect a good job! A lot turn down entry level positions because they believe they are entitled to go straight to a certain level with their degree, which is wrong. Most people straight out of Uni who have been lucky enough to get a good job tend to make a hash of it, due to their lack of basic work skills and ethic. A piece of paper (that granted you paid for) don't entitle you to a cushy job, but it will help you reach higher achievements career wise than those who don't have one. And before anyone asks, Yes I did go to Uni.

    This seems to be a common problem. The rise of consumerism in past decades has just compounded the issue. People tend to want everything now, and use credit to get all the mod cons they feel (or what society tell them) they need. Not many people bother to wait and save or simply go without anymore.


    Or "Australian" or most other countries.
    I too agree with Elladan and Sparrow (Most to my surprise! :p)

    To me the agenda is personal to each protesters personal beliefs.
    Most seem to want some kind of regulations on Government bailouts etc and the "rich" to pay more.
    And plenty are there for their own agenda's like free education and so on.
    It is funny that our local paper had some pictures of one of the "occupy" sit ons, and all of the people they took photo's of where the exact stereotype of what one would perceive a "hippy" to be like!! :p
     
  14. warrior_squirrel21

    warrior_squirrel21 blue is my favorite color

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    The movement has a few good ideas. There's one main problem though. About 10% actually have any idea what they want and are willing to do something about it, and the rest are basically hipsters who actually have tricked themselves into believing they know what they want and don't do anything usefull but make signs.
    I mean America was basically made by dudes holding signs, and i've always suported that right, but these guys are just sad for the most part.
     
  15. Sparrow

    Sparrow Well-Known Member

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    I agree, they are sad and they haven't a clue how to turn a protest movement into political change.
    I think we've seen just about the end of the 'Occupy' movement. It seems to have lost all it's steam.