Posts Tagged ‘OWS’

Seriously, Newt?

November 22, 2011

All the Occupy movement starts with the premise that we all owe them everything. They use a public park they didn’t pay for, go nearby to use bathrooms they didn’t pay for, to beg food from places they don’t want to pay for, to obstruct those who are going to work to pay the taxes to sustain the bathrooms and the park so they can self-righteously explain they are the paragons of virtue to which we owe everything… Go get a job right after you take a bath.”

— Newt Gingrich, November 19, 2011.

That statement says a lot more about Newt Gingrich than it does about the Occupy Wall Street protesters. First, the assertions are false pretty much all the way through. Many of the Occupy protesters are out of work, but they did pay taxes when they had employment, so they did indeed pay for those parks and public restrooms.

I spent some time talking with, and sometimes challenging, an Occupy protester at the information desk at Occupy Denver. I suspect that Newt has not had such as experience, but prefers to pontificate from his ivory tower. What that Occupy protester explained was that he got laid off from his job in 2008. All he had been able to get is temporary work, but he gets terminated when his hours get him too close to full time. He then jumps to another temporary job. He is working and wants to work more, but is unable to find the work. Nowhere in that conversation was there a sense that “we all owe them everything.”

I can’t understand how Newt can claim to love America, but have contempt for some many Americans and ridicule the most American of ideals – the right to assembly and free speech and to air grievances about policies in our country.

Newt is as out-of-touch with middle America as you might expect from someone who has a $250,000 no-interest revolving charge account at Tiffany’s and made over $1.6 million in consulting fees from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

… and this guy is a front runner for the GOP presidential nomination.

That suggests that the problem with conservatives extends well beyond Newt.

In my experience, the majority of my Republican friends are caring and compassionate people for their family, friends and associates, but it stops there. There is no empathy and often outright contempt for those different than them. Sometimes it is differences in ethnicity, perhaps religion, or perhaps socio-economic status, but if you are different, you somehow aren’t a real American.

Is this the party that we want to lead this country?