Rightbloggers Denounce Occupy Wall Street, Which Is Totally Not Like the Tea Party Because Hippies
The Tea Party seems to be fading, and now we have Occupy Wall Street, whose adherents have gathered in public to protest the bankers and brokers who, they say, are destroying America, and agitate for a new Revolution.
You will not be surprised to learn that rightbloggers are much less sympathetic to the second new Revolution than to the first.
Though the OWS protests have many fanciful aspects -- like the grandiose "Declaration of the Occupation of New York City" issued by a "General Assembly" -- it has gained the interest of a lot of people. The message that bailouts, foreclosures, and rapacious banking practices have been bad for America may have more support than is immediately apparent, as polls show contempt for and distrust of banksters and such like to be general and strong.
The Tea Partying rightbloggers often like to portray themselves as anti-establishment, too. Granted, their idea of the "establishment" is mainly the Democratic Party. And they're more likely to flock to the defense of the banksters, and beseech them to "go Galt," than criticize them.
But they do sometimes notice that Obama is mobbed up with Wall Street types, and say they don't like it. While that's not the same as criticizing Wall Street -- and may in fact be prompted more by spurned-lover jealousy than by genuine righteous indignation -- surely it's possible that some of them understand Wall Street is part of the problem, at least.
But some of you have been to this rodeo before, and probably know that the likelihood of this is Not Bloody. Rightbloggers don't go for these protests at all. For one thing, in their view the protests were full of hippies -- by which they don't mean, as you might imagine, the old guys in tie-dye you see hanging around the Co-Op, but young people who are not dressed for office jobs.
In a much-circulated story, some rich toffs disparagingly referred to the protesters as "hippies" -- and this has become the preferred nomenclature among rightbloggers (not to mention perhaps-fanciful sources at the New York Post).
"Meet the hippies, potheads and Communists who want to 'bring capitalism down' at Occupy Wall Street," said Invisaligtist. "Hippies Invade Wall Street For 'Day Of Rage,'" yelled Marooned in Marin. "SMELLY HIPPIES PROTEST WALL STREET....BY SHOWING THEIR TITTIES," drooled Kickin' and Screamin'. "Screwball Hippies," said the Washington Times. Glenn Beck's The Blaze saw "dozens of people in tie-dyed T-shirts and star-spangled underwear..."
Etc. This continued at Twitter ("The NYPD finally gets to clear its inventory of hippie-strength tear gas... Hippies should be neutered...") and wherever else tech-enabled patriots congregate.
Datechguy heard that unions were getting involved with the protests, which naturally made him think of the horse's-head scene in The Godfather; for, just as all protestors who are not wearing tricorners are hippies, so all union members who are not Ronald Reagan are in the Mafia.
Some of the cleverer ones, like Instapundit Glenn Reynolds, tried to play both ends against the middle. "I would be harsher on these people," said Reynolds, "but given how thoroughly Obama has been in bed with Wall Street, and vice versa, it's hard for me to get very excited." That's an interesting reaction to the advancement of a cause he appears to support; in fact, it sounds as if Reynolds prefers hippie-punching to opposing Obama and his Wall Street Pals -- and sure enough, Reynolds quickly got with the Stupid Hippies storyline. (Also, when he heard the Occupy Wall Street protests compared to Egypt's at Tahrir Square, Reynolds mused, "those who think that Egypt is a good model might want to ponder for just a moment how that's worked out." How they miss Mubarak on the right! Well, with Pinochet and Franco dead, these are lean times for rightblogger role models.)
On a similar note, "Occupy Wall Street Not Our Arab Awakening," harrumped James Joyner at Outside the Beltway. Joyner admitted that "there's a lot of frustration out there, much of it legitimate" at Wall Street, but "random protests years after the fact are a bizarre reaction to all that in a representative democracy. If there's really a movement out there to change the way we do business, then organize that effort into a political movement and get into the arena rather than clogging up the Brooklyn Bridge." You can almost hear a crewcut dad yelling this at his hippie son, circa 1970.
Also, "Mob rule is a poor substitute for democracy," said Joyner. "...The last thing we need in America is to increase the level of rancor and noise." One would have thought it too late for that, but maybe Joyner's hearing is only attuned to rancorous protests by people under 65 who are not wearing Patrick Henry costumes.