One of the most effective tactics on the part of the anti-#OccupyWallStreet and #wearethe99% movements is attempting to shame participants into silence. Got laid off? Your own fault, and go take a shower, you filthy hippie. And get a haircut and a job, while you’re at it. Lost your home? Pay your bills, dirtbag, and don’t buy more house than you can afford. Pushing the “personal responsibility” button on the Have-Nots' feel-bad issues to discourage them into giving up and wallowing has worked well for the Haves in the past. So why isn’t it working now?In a development that bodes badly for Wall Street, a large portion of the 99% have realized that we’re all in the same boat. With the mind-bogglingly high unemployment, uninsured, foreclosure and poverty numbers--despite the positive spin constantly attempted by the mainstream media--it’s more surprising that we haven’t realized this glaring fact until now.
Official unemployment numbers nationwide are 9-16%, and affect 14-25 million people. Unofficial numbers are even higher. http://www.shadowstats.com puts the “true” unemployment rate at 23%. Long term unemployment is the highest we’ve seen since the Great Depression, which indicates that things won’t get better anytime soon. In fact, unemployment numbers aren’t projected to return to normal until 2016.
Wall Street blames high unemployment on oppressive taxes and regulations. But deregulation caused the problem in the first place; two-thirds of large U.S. corporations don’t pay any federal income tax anyway, and when banks received taxpayer-funded bailouts, they sat on the funds and didn’t hire anyone.
Nearly 50 million people have no health insurance. 31% rely on government-provided insurance, such as Medicaid and Medicare.
Wall Street claims that these people are uninsured because they choose to be. But they ignore the fact that these numbers are similar to the number of people living in poverty--46 million--or the number of people receiving food stamps--46 million.
Nearly 2.9 million U.S. homes received a notice of default, auction or repossession in 2010; more than a million homes were seized, with another quarter million seizures delayed by AG lender practices investigations. Around 5 million mortgages are seriously delinquent--that’s 1 in 10 mortgages.
Wall Street blames the problem on the government, for having the audacity to suggest that minorities should have the opportunity to own homes. But the decisions to provide kickbacks to crooked appraisers in exchange for overvaluing homes were made by the banks, in order to make bad, government-backed loans they knew would not be paid off by the homeowner. This was a good business decision for the banks, who would ultimately be paid back in full several times over, from selling the mortgages to investors, collecting fat fees from investors for “servicing” the mortgages [read: dealt with homeowners to conceal the different mortgage assignments], from collecting reimbursements on foreclosed homes from the government, AND from the proceeds of selling the home following foreclosure.
Wall Street, the corporate-owned mainstream media and our federal government have done a much better spin and concealment job when it comes to the damage done to investors, public employees and taxpayers. The spin was done so skillfully that the vast majority of Americans had no idea as to the scope of the problem nor any of the details, especially the fact that EVERYONE was affected, and that the problem wasn’t accidental.
Mortgage-backed securities [MBS] were purchased by most investment funds, including those invested in by leading large financial firms, individual investors and workers with 401Ks. If you’re a public employee, it’s likely that your pension fund took a big hit from the loss in value of mortgage-backed securities [MBS]. And, of course the taxpayer is on the hook for the future expenditures from public pension funds. Every American citizen suffered, to a degree, including Wall Street; they just engineered the scheme so that they would profit much more than they lost.Now, our federal government is trying to bail out the banks all over again, by releasing them from liability if they pay a relatively small amount of restitution. This would prevent states from investigating the banks and protect banks from civil lawsuits, all for $5-20 billion. As Matt Taibbi says, this constitutes around a TRILLION dollars of immunity. Thankfully, the Attorneys General of New York and California have refused to agree to a settlement structured this way. But you can bet that one is coming before November 2012.
Unemployed, employed, comfortable, struggling, young, old, Republican, Democrat. Americans. We’ve ALL been screwed by Wall Street, in one way or another. Now is the time to ensure that doesn’t happen again. Add your voice. #wearethe99%; We Are the 99%; #OccupyWallStreet; Occupy Wall Street