Listen up, you protest people! You have gone and alienated Newt Gingrich, who wants you to take a bath and get a job. Or vice-versa. And his words were greeted with applause from coast to coast. You guys should take notice.
A couple of months ago, the polls showed that many Americans sympathized with your movement. After all, who likes greed-head Wall Street folks manipulating the financial markets? They bathe, but so what? They’re corrupt, and you are right to demand that the government provide oversight on them.
But that point has been largely lost because the Occupy movement is now perceived as radical and incoherent. The loons moved in, and the sincere protesters ceded the spotlight. All of a sudden, the Sons of Anarchy were getting all the camera time. Most Americans are willing to listen, but not to guys with scorpions tattooed on their necks. And then there were the ugly displays of police-baiting and mindless destruction.
The result: According to the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, just 28 percent of Americans now approve of the Occupy movement, and James Carville will no longer take their calls.
But the primary reason this correspondent has turned bearish (sorry) on the Occupy Wall Street movement is hypocrisy. Recently, the feds announced that executives at the near bankrupt Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac agencies would receive close to $100 million in bonus money. Also, the guy who ran Solyndra into bankruptcy got a nice departure package despite the fact that the solar-panel company wasted about $500 million of taxpayer money.
So where are you on those things, Occupiers? Why are you besieging a Burger King in San Diego when the real corruption is in Washington, D.C.?
All the evidence says the protesters have no clue what they want or who the bad guys really are. They have some vague idea that the “1 percenters” are evil and, therefore, the “99 percenters” don’t have enough money to buy an SUV. Or something.
A few weeks ago, I looked into taking a trip to Cuba, where there are no “1 percenters” because the Castro brothers have terrorized the wealthy into leaving the island. I’ve been to 75 countries, but never to the socialist paradise 90 miles from the Florida Keys.
My travel agent informed me that it probably would cost me a thousand dollars a day to visit. I would be assigned a government minder and could not travel outside Havana. While in the capital city, I would be able to visit with some artists and eat dinner with a Cuban family while my bodyguard sat next to me. All of my movements would be monitored, and if I stepped out of line, “the man would come and take me away,” as Crosby, Stills and Nash (big Occupy fans) once sang.
As a “1 percenter,” I can afford the trip, but does that sound like fun to you? Perhaps the Occupiers might do a little reading up on socialism and its side effects. I’d be happy to send them my brochure from Cuba.