. . . and our responsibility, as citizens, to put a stop to it.
I’m posting this on my personal blog because I don’t want to be perceived to be speaking for anyone in the Occupy movement except myself.
There has been some misperception about who, exactly, we are protesting against.
The “rich” or “wealthy” or those in the top 1% of earned income, are not the enemy. I myself hope someday to be, if not wealthy, at least much better off financially than I am now, but even when I am, I would not qualify as a member of the “1%” we’re talking about here.
Indeed, the largest percentage of those who are perceived as rich or wealthy, including business owners, are actually part of the 99% ~ those of us who have been disenfranchised by a government which has been and continues to be corrupted by the 1% of the super-rich corporate “persons” who fund the candidates, government officials, law-makers, and governmental activities that sustain and reinforce their corporate stranglehold on the other 99% of the American Public.
When mainstream media (like the Washington Post: “Who are the 1 percent?” Oct 6, 2011) and others define that 1% as “wealthy earners” they are, deliberately or not, indulging in misdirection and misinformation.
The 1% we oppose are NOT “earners” by any definition, their wealth deriving mainly from the rightly termed “unearned income” of investments etc. ~ which is taxed at about half the rate paid on earned income.
So understand, please, that we, members of the 99%, are protesting against the Wealthiest 1% of Americans NOT those whose earned income is in the top one percent.
To paraphrase Mark Twain: the difference between the two is like the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.
If you want the facts, don’t go looking for them in mainstream media ~ search out the truth for yourself. Here’s a good place to start: 5 Facts You Should Know About the Wealthiest One Percent of Americans (http://www.alternet.org/economy/152601/5_facts_you_should_know_about_the_wealthiest_one_percent_of_americans/?page=entire).
And when you get done with that one ~ I recommend: 5 New Rules for an Economy That Works (http://www.alternet.org/economy/152654/5_new_rules_for_an_economy_that_works) ~
Only, I’d like to suggest one more Rule for that new Economy:
#6: (as Dylan Ratigan suggested when he spoke at Occupy Wallstreet) Apply the NCAA rule to all those who hold government office, from the top down. If you take money from anyone (other than your paycheck), you’re out.
We are the 99%, and this IS what democracy looks like. Join us.