As many of you know... My greatest annoyance - by far - with the Occupy Wall Street is the privileged "white whine" on display across the country. A facebook friend tagged me in the following image. Have a look, please:
|I didn't make this, but I love it.|
So much of these protests are - and should be - ridiculously insulting to the literally billions of people around the world who must worry about where their next meal is coming from, and if working a 20 hour day is even going to be enough to provide for themselves and their families.
These problems aren't the failings of capitalism. Quite the opposite.
Real poverty seen around the world is virtually without exception caused by societies that fail to respect private property in any way, shape or form; societies in which the state controls the majority of the economy directly and indirectly; societies in which redistribution of wealth is common place; societies in which trade is reviled and prohibited... In short, in socialist societies.
When you must go through your politically motivated masters to get permission to start a business, or to simply trade with your neighbor... When you risk the products of your labor being stolen without recourse by the state or its operatives... When you are in constant fear of physical violence as so much of the world is... Your opportunities are vanishingly small.
When you live in a country like the United States - for all its major and minor failings, and in spite of the self-evident fact that it's guiding principles are being eroded into that of a third-world kleptocracy - you still have opportunities of all kinds. Some people have so many opportunities that instead of even attempting to work, they can hang out all day and whine about how college costs a lot and someone else should have to pay for it.
Like this girl:
|I did make this. And yes, that's a real girl at a real protest I really talked to.|
I'll even add that it also sucks that you have to be extremely productive and add a huge amount of value in America - way more than most places around the world - to even warrant getting paid at a rate that most people consider "good" or "livable". So... Yes, when you're young, you're probably gonna need a roommate. Or two (I have two). It also sucks that between the Fed inflating the shit out of our currency, and the government adding cost after cost to people's living expenses in regulatory compliance and taxation, the bar for what is "livable" keeps shooting up and it often compels some employers to find alternatives to high-cost American labor - be that robots and other capital machinery or a part of the let's generously say 6.5 billion people around the world who are poorer than the poorest American and seeking work.
Just maybe the truly priceless young woman above could simply lower her expectations of what life owes her just a tiny bit and stop spending so damn much, and she'd be fine. Pretty sure she didn't need to go to Harvard. I know she didn't need to wear $198 Ralph Lauren boots, after all. Privileged girls being oblivious to their privilege is funny... But not that funny.
So, to wrap this up... Occupy kids (I will happily stop calling them kids when they start behaving like adults)... Stop acting like you are the new "Arab Spring". You're not.
American women are in no danger of getting whipped for wearing make-up or painting their fingernails, small children are in no danger of being mutilated or having their limbs chopped off with machetes, and families are in no danger of disappearing in the middle of the night because someone mouthed off about the government on the internet. Real people, all over this planet, have real problems. The overwhelming majority of nouveau, not-remotely-radical, pro-establishment, pro-"the man" hippies I've encountered at these events just... Don't. At all.
As far as I can tell, they are mostly college educated, middle class kids who spent between $20,000 and $200,000 on degrees in philosophy or English, that have mysteriously turned out to have not prepared them to be valued by employers in the US or anywhere else during the rough economic times we're experiencing.
So... Occupy Wall Street trustafarians: Pleeeeease just shut up about how awful your lives are before I am forced to call the waaaaambulance.