From Wisconsin To Wall Street, An Economic Reckoning
The comparisons were inevitable. As Occupy Wall Street gathers momentum and new allies, progressives have quickly connected it with the other headline-grabbing uprising this year: The mass protests in Wisconsin against Gov. Scott Walker’s attack on labor unions. A statement from leaders of the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees union, which endorsed Occupy Wall Street this week, was typical: “Just as a message was sent to politicians in Wisconsin, a clear message is now being sent to Wall Street: Priority number one should be rebuilding Main Street, not fueling the power of corporate CEOs and their marionette politicians.”
The essential theme connecting events in Madison and New York City is unmistakable. Both represent an economic reckoning at a time of grim unemployment rates and stagnant wages for middle-class Americans. “Both the defense of unions [in Wisconsin] and Occupy Wall Street, which is broader in its definition of the problem, are responding to two or three decades of increasing economic inequality and, until fairly recently, the inability of progressives to address those things,” says Georgetown University historian Michael Kazin, author of American Dreamers: How the Left Changed a Nation.
But the Wisconsin-Occupy Wall Street comparison is a more complicated one in its specifics. The two don’t fit neatly side by side and, in some ways, bear no resemblance at all. Here is a look at how two of the biggest populist protests of the year stack up:
October 7, 2011 - Posted by raemd Rae | Class Warfare, Democracy, Equal Rights, Freedom, Government, Ideologues, Liberty, Media, Middle Class, Politics, Populism, Revolution, Unemployment | Corporations, Gov Scott Walker, Income Gap, Inequality, Labor, Law Enforcement, Occupy Wall Street, Social Media, Wages, Wall Street
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