Fear and Loathing in Occupy Wall Street

The suggestion came from a National Public Radio caller of all people.  Occupy Wall Street’s vitriol and fervor against our economic and political systems may actually be coming from an interior anger by those who were previously Obama’s biggest supporters, now disenchanted with their plight in a post-Bush era world.

Sold a bill of goods by a man offering hope and change, these young people who have driven this counter-cultural movement aren’t just the 99%, they’re one of Obama’s key demographics.

In a way, this could be an internal frustration moving outward. Understanding that the world isn’t as they were promised it would be, the Occupiers are not just frustrated at the world, but frustrated that they believed the world would change under a man with no history of affecting any change.

Of course, conservatives will simply say, “I told you so,” but that doesn’t change the fact that there truly did need to be a change.

George W. Bush’s ideas of spending restraint were similar to Paris Hilton’s. The handshake deals with big oil and defense firms that were so prevalent under W’s regime continue under soon-to-be-former President Obama.

No accountability, no spending restraints, and the massive, burdensome programs we can’t pay for are also not efficient enough to be effective.

I’ve been saying this for months: if you want change in our world, look within. I wasn’t the first one to say this. Ghandi said “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

Whether the Occupiers realize it consciously or not is a different issue of course, but there must, on some level, be a little bit of self-loathing among those who voted for Obama in hope of a different direction, and instead got an even steeper trajectory in the direction we were already headed (down).

I can remember the college campuses erupting that November night in 2008 when they helped elect the first black president.

It was supposed to be a paradigm shift in our political culture, and even greater than that, our societal culture as well.

Then those kids graduated, couldn’t find a job, moved back in with their parents, and proceeded to blame everyone else for the problems.

We all have a right to make choices. It is our prerogative as agents with free will. With that comes the responsibility of having to be wrong sometimes.

They were so sure they were right, so emboldened by the charisma of candidate Obama, that now that his policies have been almost as big a failure as his leadership, this group of young people doesn’t know where to turn.

They were told their whole lives that you go to college to get a degree, you get a degree to get a job. There are no jobs.

They were told for months, if you vote for Obama, you’ll get a change. We have hope. There has been no change, and for many that hope is long gone.

Occupy Wall Street protestors are mad about a system that promotes inequality, that benefits everyone but them. They’re also mad at themselves for believing one vote could change it all.

I can’t say I blame them. If I had believed it, I’d be mad too.

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