Occupy group a far cry from Tea Party | PostIndependent.com

Occupy group a far cry from Tea Party

Right Angles
James D. Kellogg
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
James D. Kellogg

Our public parks are at risk. The Occupy Wall Street (OWS) movement threatens to camp out in every community until they get what they want, whatever that is. Cheered on by the mainstream media, these protesters are billed as the “progressive” version of the TEA Party. Keep dreaming.

Unified by hatred of the wealthy, OWS promotes “world revolution” as the only solution to the perceived social injustices of capitalism. Interestingly, they adopted the raised fist of the communist revolution as their symbol. That gives their message some coherence.

By contrast, the TEA Party is rooted in the founding principles of America and the rule of law. While members hold diverse views on many issues, they are united in a desire for limited government, a free-market economy and fiscal responsibility. TEA Party affiliates believe the United States should not be divided by class, but united by the Constitution that guarantees individual liberty and underlies economic success.

After commandeering public spaces in many large cities, OWS has accosted ordinary citizens, threatened businesses and provoked law enforcement. The hooligans have no regard for public or private property. Gatherings have become physically violent in some cases. In a month of protests around the nation, several thousand people have been arrested.

TEA Party events are civil affairs. Organizers get permits and cooperate with police. They respect the rule of law and provide their own food, water, medical care and bathrooms. No one gets arrested and no property is damaged. And attendees pick up their trash.

The website OccupyWallSt.org asserts that OWS is “a leaderless resistance movement … using the revolutionary Arab Spring tactic” to achieve objectives. Though objectives are unspecified, they state, “we don’t need Wall Street or politicians to build a better society.”

So why does OWS support President Obama, Sen. Chris Dodd and Congressman Barney Frank? Big banks and investment firms were among Obama’s top donors in 2008. Dodd and Frank are directly responsible for the mortgage-backed security crisis that sparked our current economic crisis.

The TEA Party holds Republicans and Democrats accountable. They opposed the Wall Street bailout, handouts to GE and Solyndra, the insurance mandates of Obamacare, and choosing winners in the automobile industry. And TEA Party affiliates are resolute in electing Constitution-based fiscal conservatives to political office.

It’s a laughable claim that OWS represents the 99 percent of our nation who will no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of the 1 percent. They can’t even get their own house in order.

Reportedly, the OWS finance committee garnered nearly $500,000 in recent donations, but refuses to share the wealth. For instance, protesters at Zuccotti Park in New York are apparently incapable of providing their own socks and underwear. Demonstrators are angry that the finance committee isn’t springing to supply these items for the masses. They want to know where the money is going. Oh, the irony!

While OWS is trashing city parks and threatening financially successful people, the TEA Party is working for change at the source of the problem, which is Washington, D.C.

Bigger government that redistributes wealth, enabling more people to live off the efforts of a dwindling number of taxpayers, is a bad solution to a fictional problem. The real answer for economic revival is less government, more freedom and individual responsibility.

Don’t accept the assertion that capitalism only rewards the greedy. Instead, consider the paraphrased words of economist Milton Friedman. “The record of history is clear. There is no alternative way of improving the lot of ordinary people than the productive activities that are unleashed by a free enterprise system. The masses are worst off in societies that depart from that.”

James D. Kellogg of New Castle is a professional engineer, the author of the novel E-Force, and the founder of LiberTEAWatch. com. Contact him at jamesdkellogg@yahoo.com.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.


Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User