The 99%. It's laughable and ridiculous. The New Zealand mob is claiming it represents 99%, which obviously means it should set up a political party and then sweep to power in the November elections. After all, with the MMP electoral system, it would mean they would have power, could pass all the laws they want, raise the taxes they want.
Except of course, they aren't 99%, not even 9%, but quite possibly 0.99%.
More seriously, what are they about? It is very easy to dismiss them as the usual leftwing mob who demand government does more violence to the property and people of whom they don't approve. However, there is one point - opposition to bank bailouts.
Government should not prop up business. There shouldn't be subsidies for any businesses or protection from competition. Corporatism should be fought. Banks that make foolish loans that they can't recover should not have their risky behaviour bailed out by taxpayers. That includes loans to governments. Shareholders, bondholders and ultimately depositors should bear those losses.
Yet the "occupy" mobs think all banks are bad, they oppose capitalism and demand other people's money to pay for all the things they like. Yet they use mobile phones invented and built by capitalists, on telecommunications networks invented by capitalists, wears clothes sold by capitalists, drinks coffee and eats food produced and sold by capitalists. They think capitalism is bad, yet they can't conceive of what it is like to eliminate capitalism - which after all, is simply the freedom to establish your own business trading goods or services, to make a profit (or loss) and hire who you wish to supply labour. The alternatives have tended to at best result in sclerotic stagnation, or at worst created rivers of blood.
By contrast they embrace government, the institution with the monopoly of legitimised violence. They want new taxes, they want to take money by force from people who they think have too much. Yet on a global average, virtually everyone in everyone developed country meets that definition. The average GDP per capita (PPP) is US$11,000 per annum. Every country in the European Union, every OECD country (including Turkey and Mexico), even Botswana is above that level. By rights surely at least half of the people in those countries should have more tax taken from them, to pay for?
Public health care monopolies, education monopolies, state welfare and state make work programmes.
They want more Nanny State and they think people who earn higher incomes will keep doing so, just to pay for what they want. Even if they don't think that, they want to confiscate wealth and give it to the state, as a trusted party to "look after everyone".
Bottom line? These protesters want MORE taxes, an enlarged welfare state, a bigger Government, State jobs and death to bankers – and a bath. Marx would have been proud of them. I give them a fortnight at most. The Police have already removed the portaloos and it can’t be long before Starbucks and Pizza Express get fed up with toilets blocked by Lentil casserole and organic dysentery. As much as I hoped people had woken up from the stupor of a decade of Labour benefit addiction, the OccupyLSX protest is nothing more than a cold turkey sweat of the terminal welfare junkies.
Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.
He also points out how intellectually inept the mob are, because they somehow think that public debt is the responsibility of capitalists:
No one has EVER forced me to buy shares. Contrast if you will, the £100,000 of PUBLIC debt carried by EVERY family in the UK, thanks to Politicians and the Central Banks raiding our currency, yet no one has demanded to occupy Parliament or the Bank of England. Germans are protesting outside the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, thousands of them who know EXACTLY where the criminals are. Us? Sitting on the steps of St Pauls Catherdral and being kettled once again by the laughing Policeman.
There are good reasons to be angry. Angry at politicians who ran budget deficits endlessly to bribe voters with their children's and grandchildren's money, without their consent. Angry at politicians who required banks to lend to the feckless and who ran the fiat currency system that provided an ongoing supply of credit to banks, expecting them to lend, and then who promised to save the banks when they loaned out too much. Angry at politicians who were never straight about the ponzi schemes they created of public debt, pension and health promises.
Yet they should also be angry at themselves. How many of them would vote for any politician who pointed out the overspending? How many of them would vote for politicians who would let banking be free, who would let banks be very tight and conservative on credit?
You see in a liberal democracy people are to blame for the governments they elect. In the UK, US, EU, New Zealand, all over, the majority voted for governments that favoured some businesses over others, that spent more than they gathered in taxes, that protected some with the money of others, and which refused to say "no" when people kept wanting more and more without paying for it.
No. They are hooked on being protected from reality, being protected from the consequences of their own decisions. They want the government to give them jobs, give them health monopolies (anything else is like "America where people die bleeding on the streets because they don't have their credit card handy to pay the ambulance" (bullshit)), teach their kids what they should learn, give them homes, tell them what to eat, look after their families, wipe their bums.
They offer at best confused anger over a situation they don't understand. At worst, they are a mob who want what other people have out of pure envy, and are hopelessly addicted to government fixing their problems.
In Rome they were violent criminals, hopefully this time the mobs will quietly dissipate under the contradictions of their own incredulity about economics.