Published On: Mon, Oct 31st, 2011

Occupy Wall Street is Halloween

Quite a few pundits, talking heads and even politicians are trying to draw parallels between Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party movement, but they miss the real point about both. If you were to compare the two movements as holidays, OWS would be Halloween and The Tea Party would be the 4th of July.

If you were to accidentally wander into Zuccotti Park on October 31st, you would see Halloween being honored in all it’s splendor. You would find zombies, commies, anarchists and socialists, and some very confused people all threatening tricks if treats are not to be had. The Tea Party on the other hand is replete with costumed colonials in tricorn hats, ladies dressed as Betsy Ross and American flags. Hundreds if not thousands of American flags making every Tea Party rally seem like the 4th of July.

The true spirit of Halloween is imbued in all the people ensconsed at Zuccotti Park. It is the idea that one can happily put one’s hand out and be handed a treat simply because one wants one. There is even the menace of a trick behind the demand to be provided with a treat. That is the spirit of Halloween and it is the spirit of the Occupy Wall Street movement. That very spirit was defined by one protester who was demanding that someone (He was not specific who that should be) pay his tuition for him. His reasoning for that demand was “Just because…it’s what I want.”

The true spirit of Independence Day, the 4th of July, is honored by the members of the Tea Party movement. That spirit is imbued with the ideas of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States. It is the spirit of free men and women who warn “Don’t Tread On Me.” It is the very spirit of the Founders who gave us this great nation at the risk of their very lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor. The goal of the modern Tea Party movement is to preserve that nation from destruction at the hands of politicians who would bankrupt us merely to buy votes to preserve their own careers.

Both the Occupy Wall Street and Tea Party Movements are fundamentally American phenomena. The Occupy Wall Street movement comes out of the anti-war movement of the 1960s. That movement was a creation of what was called the “new left.” That “new left” managed to destroy the old left when it wrested control of the Democrat party in 1972. That old left had been liberal, but it was profoundly pro-American. The new left had no such inclinations. In the Occupy Wall Street phenomenon, you see the effort to relive those heady days of the 1960s with drugs, free love and sticking it to the “man.”

The Tea Party movement traces it’s background to the original  Boston Tea Party of 1773. It takes up that cause of our ancestors that there should be “no taxation without representation.” The modern day version of that cause is opposition to spending wealth that we do not have and then leaving the problem of paying for this debt to future generations. These future generations are not being given a say about the burden we are imposing on them through our profligate spending.

Now this article is not intended to disparage Halloween.  Halloween is a much loved holiday in America just as is the 4th of July. Americans spend a lot of money on Halloween stuff. This year, projected Halloween spending may reach $7 billion. That’s a lot of candy corn. But Americans do not take Halloween seriously. They do not really believe that it is ghosts and goblins or miniature versions of Lady Gaga who are at their door demanding treats in lieu of a trick. It is just a great gag for the kids.

However when kids grow up, it is time “to put away childish things.” Someone has to tell the crowd down at Zuccotti Park that there really is no such thing as a free lunch. If you want something you must earn it. It is not yours to have merely “Just because…it’s what I want.”

About the Author

- Paul Bianco, retired from a career in sales, now spends his spare time as a gadfly on the many political blogs. Paul says he is just going through a phase, but that phase seems to have lasted two decades. Paul's conservative political philosophy was formed well before conservative talk radio and Fox News came along. Paul remembers the days when conservatives like William F Buckley Jr were voices in the wilderness "standing athwart history, yelling stop!" From time to time Paul contributes some of the insights he has gained from observing politics for so many years, and hopes that readers will be entertained and perhaps even enlightened.