It’s been a year since the Occupy Wall Street movement emerged. Not one member of Congress who defends tax cuts for the rich or policies that hurt the middle class is fearful of losing his or her seat. Besides Elizabeth Warren, no serious candidate for office is running on a progressive, populist platform — and she’s neck-in-neck with her opponent (in Massachusetts!). No policies have been enacted to address rising inequality or the jobs crisis or malfeasance on Wall Street.
Far from it. Republicans in the House have blocked even the modest jobs measure by President Obama. His Attorney General, the former corporate lawyer Eric Holder, pursued no criminal prosecution against the major banksters whose risky business and frauds have cost the economy some $12.8 trillion — while they enjoy their millions in compensation. The middle class saw its household income shrink, continuing a 30-plus year trend of decline. Mr. Obama was bullied into accepting a budget deal that could wreck the economy further if the so-called fiscal cliff is allowed to happen. The GOP nominee is a unapologetic financier who engaged in the destructive behavior that destroyed the middle class. His platform promises more of the same, repeated with the monotonous insistence of the Aflac duck: Tax cuts. The big banks are bigger, and more politically potent, than ever.
To be sure, Occupy was never bankrolled by the plutocracy, as was the case with the Tea Party and FreedomWorks and other front groups. The case against corporate welfare lacks money from the Koch brothers and other big energy donors. No big donors are fighting the Military-Industrial Complex or the for-profit health and pharmaceutical industries. There is no super PAC pushing for the reinstatement of Glass-Steagall and outlawing flash trading, derivatives and other gambling.More