Last Thursday, we saw people flooding The Strip in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street. And in marching on Las Vegas Boulevard, Occupy Las Vegas showed tourists a different face of Vegas, a face of Vegas they’re not used to seeing on this street run by casinos promising nothing but hedonistic fun. Instead of that, tourists caught a glimpse of “The Real Vegas”: the unemployed, the working poor, the struggling students, the struggling seniors. This is the side of Vegas that LVCVA would rather not advertise. But in this rare moment, reality came crashing down on fantasy.
Why? It probably doesn’t help that despite economists marking the official end of “The Great Recession”, household income continued to fall nearly 7%. No matter how much we say the recession is over, for many Americans, and a whole lot of Nevadans, it rages on as they live in fear of losing everything. But in the last couple of years, that fear has been turning into anger. In the beginning, “Tea Party, Inc.” was hoping to co-opt that anger and direct it at “LIB-RULZZZ!!!” But now that Occupy Together is offering a non-corporate alternative to the “tea party” corporate front groups, people are realizing they now have a chance to redirect their anger at the forces that really caused this mess.
Yet even though Americans are becoming angry over the increasingly muted economic recovery, Republicans in Congress continue to block President Obama’s American Jobs Act while pushing instead for even MORE UNEMPLOYMENT! Yes, you heard me right. As the G-O-TEA demands even more public sector firings, it only offers to worsen our economic situation by increasing the unemployment line.
This is why Americans are angry, and this is why Occupy Wall Street may become more than just one protest. People want jobs, but Congress does nothing. People are feeling ignored. Even while the 99% suffer, no one cares as long as the top 1% continues to prosper. Though people are demanding real economic solutions now, all they’re seeing on Capitol Hill is more bickering about policies that do nothing to help formerly middle class workers.
This is why Americans are angry. They feel like the system is broken. And really, can we blame them? Can we blame them for being angry at Koch Industries buying as much “free speech” as they want with each upcoming campaign while they were continually ignored?
So can we blame these people for taking to the streets? And can we blame them for wanting to send a message to the corporate powers that be by occupying the very symbol of American capitalism? And can we blame them for doing the same to Nevada’s own version of this?
(If you like this, there’s more at my blog.)
Great sign from #OccupyChristchurch:
Well, you know Kiwis are quite the wits.
Protesters dismantle tents at Tinsley Park
Still alive and well in the rain in Seattle. The mayor relented on his original order that the Westlake Park area of protest be vacated, and now says he’s sympathetic and they can stay as long as they don’t pitch tents or block traffic.
Cyrano, drying trend coming for the next week or so, thank goodness!
And my son told me this morning he’s going to show up. Pushing 50 and has never had as much as a bench warrant, so says time is overdue for finally being put in cuffs and taken into custody (after all, it’s family tradition). 🙂
Hi atdnext! Thanks for your piece! It’s good to get a little information about the other OWS locations. We are seeing a bit more coverage on MSM of the New York City protests, and today they are showing some footage of a rather large gathering in Boston. But there are lots of smaller protests all over the country that we don’t hear anything about on the MSM.
Of course, the MSM has done its share with derogatory comments about the protesters, showing the most radical people (like the zombies in Zuccotti Park) that give the movement an unfair image IMO. It would certainly be an eye-opener to a lot of the American people to see just exactly WHO is marching… as you say, the chronically unemployed, the very poor, the seniors, and the middle class who have been hurt so badly.
One question…is the Las Vegas protest on-going, or was it just for the day? Please keep us posted! Thanks again!
It is rather like the Emperor’s new clothes……..Corporate America does not want us to point out to the world that they and the TP/ GOP are showing their asses. Good luck in Las Vegas……..keep the likes of that crazy woman that ran there at bay……….
Heh, for the same reasons we need to bring the Occupation to places like Beverly Hills and Aspen. Power to da people!
WW, speaking of Aspen, I sure wish Hunter Thompson was still with us. It would be great to see what he would write about today’s America.
Amen to that, KT. So long as the man was even halfway sober there was no one who could skewer like he could.
Nice article and as a former Nevadan and return Californian I am with you all on this. Look closely, after I move back to the east bay this week, you WILL see me in Oakland, Berkeley or SF occupying a city. THE PEOPLE UNITED WILL NEVER BE DEFEATED!!!!!!!!!!!!
You GO Sue!!! 🙂
Oh wow – so fast! I sure will miss having you nearer, but where you’re headed is not THAT far away so we will see each other! Enjoy the cool – I will live vicariously through you!