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Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

You Just Might Be An ‘Occupier’


Many of us are scratching our heads trying to make sense of the Occupy Wall Street movement and its sundry clones around the world.

With apologies to the comedian Jeff Foxworthy, who first made a name for himself with the refrain “then you just might be a redneck” (example: “If you have 24 pickup trucks and none of them work, then you just might be a redneck”), let’s examine the Occupy Wall Street phenomenon.

* If you refuse to recognize that every idea of Marx’s was debunked over 160 years ago, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you wear Nike shoes, designer jeans, and carry your smart phone to the demonstrations against capitalism, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you think the United States controls an empire, even though you cannot think of any colonies it owns, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you think other people must always be required to relinquish their material things so that you can pursue social justice and feel idealistic and righteous, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you consider your own property to be sacred while other people’s property should be used for social engineering, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you favor academic departments in which only enlightened leftist opinion can be expressed and where there is no room for non-leftist dissenting opinion to be heard, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you use the term Islamophobia often but never use the term Islamofascism, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you believe everything wrong with the world is because of the United States, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you think there is nothing useful to be learned from the fact that Cuba used to be the richest country in Latin America and today is the poorest country in Latin America, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you are not aware of the fact that Cubans steal boats to sneak into the U.S. but no low-income Americans steal boats to sneak into Cuba, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you think there is nothing we can learn from comparing the histories of East Germany with West Germany before the unification, or North Korea with South Korea, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you think all arguments can be settled by telling a non-leftist he
reminds you of Rush Limbaugh or Glenn Beck, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you support proposals that make real problems of the world worse, just as long as advocating them makes you feel caring and righteous, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you prefer that poor people in the Third World starve rather than embrace capitalism and live like you do, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you believe terrorism is caused by poverty, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you believe SUVs threaten life on earth, and more generally that the planet is in imminent danger of destruction unless everyone does what you want them to do, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you believe one country is rich and another poor because the rich country stole wealth from the poor country, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

* If you demand social justice but have no idea how to define what it means or explain how to achieve it, then you just might be a Wall Street Occupier.

            Steven Plaut is a professor at the University of Haifa. He can be contacted at steveneplaut@yahoo.com.

About the Author: Steven Plaut is a professor at the University of Haifa. He can be contacted at steveneplaut@yahoo.com.


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