Let me first start by saying that everything I said several months ago in my coverage of the tea party, despite fervent disagreement, resentment and even the death threats, will not be recanted in any way and I will continue to stand by every word I spoke.There is no doubt in my mind that some of you out there are likely to have taken offense to what I have said, and I’m sure you would be more than happy to explain to me, in no uncertain terms, why I am absolutely and completely off base about what the tea party stands for and what the tea party does.
I have said it before and I will proudly say again tonight. I am a republican. I am a firm believer in a limited government that does its best to work for the people rather than finding a way to throw our tax dollars at the problem and proceeding to ignore it until comes back to ask for more. I am a firm believer that it’s the people of the nation, not the institutions we fund, nor the groups we belong to, that make this country great. That polarizing and jingoistic effect of an “us vs. them” mentality can never be, or become, a suitable replacement for the common decency that comes with the simple virtue of compromise. Some people may disagree, and that’s their choice to make. But it lends no credence to their ideals if the only reasons that they have for support are that they don’t belong to one group or another. And that brings me to tonight’s final segment.
These are not the rebels that overthrew Muammar Gaddafi. They are students. They are the unemployed. This is a movement known as Occupy Wall Street. Their goal? To hold the management and CEOs of all the companies that they feel escaped proper punishment or scrutiny accountable for their actions. For tighter regulations be put forth in order to prevent things like the crash of 2008 from happening again. But beneath the nylon and polyester veil of their tents and ideals is a revolution that will not grow past its infancy. It is stunted by a lack of organization and consistency in their beliefs.
For example, they are not the downtrodden and abused masses that they claim to be. They are tired. But they are not the sick. They are not the poor. They are the people who grew up with twenty four hour news and decided that after all the trouble they’ve seen in the world that something should be done. In this case from behind cellphones and tablets and designer clothes. I am not against proper regulation of industry, but I also believe that demand is the most significant driver of any company to make and sell their products. And it seems like those who have taken up residence in Zuccotti Park need a firmer understanding of what it is they are protesting against if they want to have any significant impact. In order to enact change you must first understand that there is no such thing as a free lunch.
Their cause is worthy and that makes it all the more disappointing that it seems rather unlikely that they will be able to enact any change without a more direct and consistent line of complaint to be dispersed and petitioned for. A demand for tighter regulation and punishment of those on Wall Street who were responsible for the economic downturn of the country doesn’t mean much without a detailed understanding of the situation and what specifically can be done about it. More than that it takes the patience and understanding that even if everyone in New York joined your cause, the Occupy movement wouldn’t be able to get everything it wanted out of this. Improper understanding of the situation at hand. A broad unjustified prejudice against those who are on the opposite sides of your viewpoint. And most of all, an unwillingness to compromise. It effectively turns this movement into a more glorified version of the Tea Party.
The only reason the tea party survived was because of large corporate vestiges that preyed on with false promises. Occupy’s inherent incapability to bind with large corporate interests or political groups, this is a movement that is unlikely to gain any traction. I only sincerely hope I’m wrong. I’m Will McAvoy, this is has been News Night, Terry Smith is coming up next with “The Capitol Report.” Goodnight.
Need more Will? Here’s an encore:
Marc Price is a writer for HBOWatch.com and iheardin. The world’s only HBO fan website dedicated to bringing you the latest news and information about your HBO subscription. Though we aren’t affiliated with HBO or Time Warner Cable, and we certainly aren’t Will McAvoys, we do hope you appreciate the content posted here day in and day out. Thank you for reading and join us if you think you’ve got what it takes to do news right.