Most of us having been watching the growing "Occupy Wall Street" movement the past few weeks. It is a lose-knit group of people mainly venting the frustration felt by the majority of Americans concerned about the inability of our financial and public institutions to solve the economic problems that have put millions out of work and sapped our savings and even our will to believe in the American Dream.
The protesters, and many other American across the country, are frustrated and angry. We are frustrated and angry over the lack of any real solutions, but I don't think that alone is fueling the protests in Manhattan and other American cities. What has finally gotten the great silent majority (Remember that term?) of Americans to take notice and raise their voices is the disconnect between the general population and the people in Washington, New York and our state capitals.
Even President Obama doesn't get it. He has made attempts to make us think he understands, but it is all too obvious that he doesn't. He is busy campaigning for his take-it-or-leave-it "jobs bill" when what most of us want is for him to find a way to work with the Nough Boys in the Republican Congress.
The Republicans want to continue the status quo for Big Business, while Obama says he wants to use a balanced approach of budget cuts and new taxes to try to dig us out of the current jobs and financial disaster. That makes sense to many of us. The problem is, he is not addressing the issues many of us see as critical to regaining the support and trust of what the protesters refer to as "The 99%."
Many of the financial problems seem to stem from the melt down of the housing market caused by the deregulation of the banking and financial industries started by Bill Clinton and continued under the Bush Administration. Obama continues to employ several of the same people who helped strip away many of the regulations that protected the middle class. This has allowed big banks and financial firms to bilk millions of Americans out of their homes and retirement savings with reckless, immoral and illegal schemes.
We have the fox guarding the hen house. He needs to clean house and get some new faces with new ideas into his inner circle. Next, he needs to demand that the institutions that we bailed out with our tax dollars stop doing business the same way. The people who caused the problems continue to make big profits, pay big bonuses to their executives and sit on large amounts of cash while the rest of us struggle or even sink into the financial abyss. The President and Congress do nothing to right this wrong. We wonder why nobody has been put on trial for this huge immoral transfer of funds from the masses to the corporate robbers. The president says most of what they did was not illegal. That means he believes that some of it was illegal. Go after those who committed the crimes you think you can prove; put them in jail and take back the looted funds. How hard is that to understand?
Mr. President, it is time to shake things up. You are a sports fan and understand that if the team is not achieving its potential you have to make changes. Fire the assistant coaches, or we, the owners of this country, will fire you. We believe that the game is rigged and is working in favor of the new Robber Barons.
This is becoming class warfare, but it is a war being created by the business elite and their cronies in government. They claim that we want to steal from the rich and give their hard-earned money to the rest of the people. That is, of course, not true. We want to stop giving billions of dollars to major corporations and make them stand on their own. The business and government elites don't understand this. They yell class warfare, when all we want is a square deal.
The politicians are only trying to maintain their status and their place in the food chain, and the place of those who keep them well-fed and in office. We want a fair economy; capitalism not cronyism. Don't believe the robbers who say that we can't take the advantages from the "job creators." We have been funding them for decades. Where are the jobs? They are sitting on the cash they got from our taxes and living the high life, while much of the rest of the country struggles to stay afloat. That's not fair and the American people are starting to figure that out.
Beware awakening the sleeping dog. It's bite can be very painful, just ask the former leaders of Egypt.