The Occupy Wall Street Movement : A Personal Reflection

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The drawn-out recession has spawned much discontent and in unrest. Job opportunities are at its lowest and the income gap between the richest one percent and the 99 percent middle income and lower continues to grow. This has generated the Occupy Wall Street Movement, also known as the 99 percent movement. Two young economists, UC Berkeley professor, Emmanuel Saez and French economist Thomas Piketty have been credited with coining the phrase “We are the 99%” from their research on the income inequality in the United States. Their research revealed a U-shaped graph, magnifying the drastic drift between America’s middle and the wealthy classes over time.

They reported :

"from 2002 to 2007, the top 1 percent of American households accounted for about two-thirds of all income gains. In that time period, the top 1 percent saw their incomes increase more than 10 percent a year when adjusted for inflation, while the rest of the households – the 99 percent – had much more modest income increases of 1.3 percent a year."

If this disparity were just numbers on a research papers, it would just be that…facts on a paper but the truth is the economic downturn has affected lives…many the likes of us. Husbands have gone without jobs for months, even years. Houses suffer foreclosures..Many have made sacrifices to make ends meet… snipping coupons, visiting thrift stores or juggling three part-time jobs. It is no wonder that the 99% movement has found sympathy with the common man because at the core of the movement is a call for democracy, a call for more economic equality.

Without attempting to get political or technical with details, here is my attempt to verbalize the ramifications of the economic downturn:

Many have taken to the streets to voice their unhappiness.
Many have taken to the streets to voice their unhappiness. | Source
Unemployment rate was 9.1% as of September 2011.
Unemployment rate was 9.1% as of September 2011. | Source

Growing Mounds of Discotent


The mounds keep stacking

The mortgage is due

The kid needs new shoes

And it has to be Toms’ to be cool

Or her life is screwed.


The mounds keep growing

The car engine needs to be checked

The oil leaks by drips and gags

To fix or not …is not the question

When safety mocks your discretion.


The mounds keep building

Today’s groceries

Tomorrow’s sundries

No more wants, only needs

So many, which do you weed?


The mounds grows

Stacks of bills

The desk tips from its fill

Pay up or suffer the consequences

If only they knew the circumstances

Not for want of trying…

Already 300 resumes sent and counting.


A gangly stash…riddled

Hopes made of stubble

Desperate dreams of ash

About to collapse.

I know this has been circulated much in social network sites,  but just one more go at it? Truth doesn't get old.
I know this has been circulated much in social network sites, but just one more go at it? Truth doesn't get old. | Source
Cries of basic needs.
Cries of basic needs. | Source
Protesters sleeping on snowny sidewalk in Denver, Colorado. They continue their protests even in the winter snowstorm and freezing night-time temperatures.
Protesters sleeping on snowny sidewalk in Denver, Colorado. They continue their protests even in the winter snowstorm and freezing night-time temperatures. | Source

99% versus 1%

99% or 1%

Makes no sense

Which side thrives

And which dies?

The undignified woes of broken dreams

Pink slip, severance pay....”you’ve been let go”

Needed yesterday

A byword today

And tomorrow still

Standing in line

Vying,

For a spot

Wishing

Hoping

It’ll be there

When the lines are done.


The 1% gets fatter

By the lard of their own greed

Feeding their own pleasures

While the rest scrambles

Needy mice in the wheels of life

Peddling, huffing for a little share

Their cries—

Desperate refrain that echoes down Wall Street

And comes right back.


Copyright 2011. All Rights Reserved.

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Comments 12 comments

marwan asmar profile image

marwan asmar 5 years ago from Amman, Jordan

Very sad and very true, it just keeps getting worse; I wounder is it eternal damnation or can things really change with a genuine turnaround where there is quality and distribution for all rather than the very few. Good luck!


AnesaK profile image

AnesaK 5 years ago from USA

It really is bad out there job-wise, especially for recent undergraduate and graduate school graduates who are looking to begin their careers. I am an avid supporter of this movement and everything it stands for. Thank you for posting this- voted up!


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 5 years ago Author

marwan asmar, thanks for your comments. One has to wonder if things will get better at this rate. Hopefully, thisngs will.


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 5 years ago Author

Anesek, you're right. I just read that statistically, the number of college kids returning back to live with the parents are at a record high--due to lack of jobs. Thanks for commenting.


Om Paramapoonya profile image

Om Paramapoonya 5 years ago

Ah, this is much different from your previous poetry hub. You portray this social issue in your poetry so wittily. I love it.


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 5 years ago Author

Thanks, Om, I know I'm just experimenting. Glad you dropped by to comment.


Dexter Yarbrough profile image

Dexter Yarbrough 5 years ago from United States

Hi Anglnwu! Great hub and I love the creativity of your perspective as well as the poetry! Voted up, up and away!


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 5 years ago Author

Dexter, always good to hear from you. Glad you like it and thanks for voting it up.


happypuppy profile image

happypuppy 5 years ago

I kept hearing about this movement on news. One day I happen to be around the protest area and saw it with my own eyes. Yes, things are quite bad. Just hope that things will turn around soon.


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 5 years ago Author

happypuppy, the tension continues and hopefully, there will be a good resolution. Thanks for dropping by to comment.


Petra Vlah profile image

Petra Vlah 5 years ago from Los Angeles

I liked everything about this hub of sad reality, but especially the poster about "10 years ago and now"


anglnwu profile image

anglnwu 5 years ago Author

I'm so happy to hear from you, Petra Vah. Thanks for your positive feedback:)

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