Recently an Occupy Wall Street protester posted a list of demands. As I stated in my article covering the local OccupyMN movement these types of protests are composed of a great number of individuals with varying grievances. It is unfair to state any set of demands is attributed to the entire movement but alas the recently posted set of demands are being promoted by a great number of the participants so I thought it would be fun to go through the demands one by one and point out the complete failure of logic.
Stating that the Mises Institute and Fox News are in any way comparable demonstrates the complete ignorance of the person posting that note. One is a news organization that panders to its neo-conservative audience while the other is one of the few sources of real scholarly economic knowledge and libertarian philosophy.
Anyways we know what level of idiocy we’re dealing with here so let’s move onto the demands:
Demand one: Restoration of the living wage. This demand can only be met by ending “Freetrade” by re-imposing trade tariffs on all imported goods entering the American market to level the playing field for domestic family farming and domestic manufacturing as most nations that are dumping cheap products onto the American market have radical wage and environmental regulation advantages.
Oh wow… at least the author presented his complete ignorance from the get go. First of all free trade isn’t the problem with our economy, government regulations are. The author stated other countries have wage and environmental regulatory advantages so the United States government needs to respond by enacting further regulations to offset the disadvantage created by their current regulations. I’m guessing if the author’s house was burning down he’d try dousing the blaze in gasoline in an attempt to improve the situation.
While current economic conditions are one of the most common complaints being presented at these occupations, many of the most vocal complainers obviously have no knowledge in the field of economics. Perhaps they should read some articles on that irresponsible Mises Institute website. Also, why not throw in another rather arbitrary demand:
Another policy that must be instituted is raise the minimum wage to twenty dollars an hr.
How did the author come up with $20.00 an hour? Also the author further demonstrates his economic ignorance by not realizing minimum wage laws is part of the reason unemployment in this country is as high as it is. Jacking up the minimum wage to $20.00 and hour would only create one of two outcomes; either it would cause a majority of businesses to fail causing even higher unemployment or it would cause the price of all goods to increase as an offset to the new influx of money into the economy (this is called inflation). Do you think McDonald’s will continue selling $0.99 burgers if they have to pay every employee $20.00 an hour? If they did they would fail, if they didn’t the cost of their burgers would increase drastically.
Demand two: Institute a universal single payer healthcare system. To do this all private insurers must be banned from the healthcare market as their only effect on the health of patients is to take money away from doctors, nurses and hospitals preventing them from doing their jobs and hand that money to wall st. investors.
This makes sense. Government regulations is what ultimately cause the massive increase in healthcare costs so the author’s solution is to… give the government more control over the healthcare industry? If the author actually knew anything about economics, healthcare, and liberty he would advocate the government remove itself completely from the healthcare industry and allow the free market to find viable solution it did back in the day when mutual aid societies were still allowed by the state to exist.
Demand three: Guaranteed living wage income regardless of employment.
If people are no longer required to work in order to survive what will motivate them to produce the goods and services needed by society? Would you work your ass off farming if you knew simply sitting on your ass would allow you to draw enough income to live? Most people would not and this is ultimately the problem with communism. If nobody has to work nobody will work and if nobody is working to produce the needs of society the needs of society will not exist. You can’t eat if nobody is producing food, you won’t have shelter if nobody builds it, and you won’t have clean drinking water if nobody takes care of sanitation.
Demand four: Free college education.
There is no such thing as a free college education, somebody has to pay for it. What the author probably means is, “Force all the people wealthier than me to pay for my college education.” Somebody has to pay the teachers, maintain the facilities, and provide the supplies needed to keep a college running.
Demand five: Begin a fast track process to bring the fossil fuel economy to an end while at the same bringing the alternative energy economy up to energy demand.
How? The only viable alternative source of energy that will meet the current and future needs of our society is nuclear. Nuclear energy is basically verboten so we continue to rely on the only viable alternative, fossile fuels.
Demand six: One trillion dollars in infrastructure (Water, Sewer, Rail, Roads and Bridges and Electrical Grid) spending now.
Seriously, who the fuck is supposed to pay for all of this? Where is that $1 trillion going to come from? Why was $1 trillion chosen instead of another arbitrary number? Did the author do a study? If so, where is the study?
Demand seven: One trillion dollars in ecological restoration planting forests, reestablishing wetlands and the natural flow of river systems and decommissioning of all of America’s nuclear power plants.
It’s amazing that the exact same amount of money needed for infrastructure is also needed for ecological restoration. That’s so convenient it must be an arbitrarily selected number that the author thought was sufficiently big to fix any problem.
Demand eight: Racial and gender equal rights amendment.
Umm… it’s currently illegal for an employer to discriminate against somebody because of their race or gender. Perhaps the author means we should make all forms of racial and gender discrimination illegal. That would be great because I would absolutely love to receive some maternity leave even though I’m completely incapable of becoming pregnant. We could force white supremicists to converse with minorities at the point of a gun because they wouldn’t further forge their irrational hatred or anything.
Demand nine: Open borders migration. anyone can travel anywhere to work and live.
Wait… the author wants to restrict free trade but also wants to make it legal for anybody to enter the country and work without hinderance? I love being for what I’m against as well.
Demand ten: Bring American elections up to international standards of a paper ballot precinct counted and recounted in front of an independent and party observers system.
How exactly is that going to fix the problem of election fraud? The primary problems encountered in this country stem from either idiots too stupid to properly fill out the ballot as instructed or straight up fraud via people voting multiple times. Our problems run much deeper than a simple inability to counter ballots correctly.
Demand eleven: Immediate across the board debt forgiveness for all. Debt forgiveness of sovereign debt, commercial loans, home mortgages, home equity loans, credit card debt, student loans and personal loans now! All debt must be stricken from the “Books.” World Bank Loans to all Nations, Bank to Bank Debt and all Bonds and Margin Call Debt in the stock market including all Derivatives or Credit Default Swaps, all 65 trillion dollars of them must also be stricken from the “Books.” And I don’t mean debt that is in default, I mean all debt on the entire planet period.
Instantly all financiers go out of business and those wanting to get a loan for a home, piece of necessary equipment, or to expand their business are unable to. Since businesses are unable to expand they are unable to hire more employees and thus unemployment increases when those involved in the finance market suddenly find themselves without jobs. People who would have become successful entrepreneurs and flooded the market with new and amazing products sudden find themselves unable to start a business because no institution exists to loan them the money they need. Other currently established businesses will then start to fail because a very expensive piece of equipment critical to their operations breaks down and they are unable to get a loan for a replacement.
Demand twelve: Outlaw all credit reporting agencies.
Why? No, I’m dead serious, what the fuck is this supposed to accomplish?
Demand thirteen: Allow all workers to sign a ballot at any time during a union organizing campaign or at any time that represents their yeah or nay to having a union represent them in collective bargaining or to form a union.
Is there going to be an equal right to vote yourself exempt from a union? If you want to voluntarily come together and form a union that’s cool, I full support you in your endeavor. Personally I prefer to represent myself or hire another individual with my own money who exclusively represents me and my interests.
These demands will create so many jobs it will be completely impossible to fill them without an open borders policy.
No, those demands will create a new economic dark age of record high unemployment rates, starvation, and pestilence.
I’m glad to see a lot of opposition to these demands in the comments section. Since I understand the nature of these occupations I realize these demands are not representative of anybody besides the author and the people who decide to sign onto them. With that said the media doesn’t have the same understanding and they are going to take these demands as though they apply to the entire movement. That is to say the media will state these demands are wanted by everybody currently occupying Wall Street and it will discredit the movement as a whole.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad people are finally pissed off enough to stand up and take action. It’s refreshing to see American people doing something besides sitting on their asses complaining about the current condition of the economy, corruption in the government, and disagreements with current socially accepted norms. With that said, the protesters need to realize that the media is going to take anything said by a crazy participant and run with it. When that happens others in the movement needs to loudly declare that no single individual represents the entire movement and statements made by individuals can only be applied to those individuals.