Sunday, April 29, 2012

Two more days until the big Occupy May 1 General Strike

I am actually looking forward to the big May 1 General Strike that is being promoted by the Occupy movement. Not because I support them, but as a test to see how much support they can gain from average American workers. I know they can rally the diehard Occupiers, some unions, and plenty of high school and college kids, but can they finally manage to broaden there base beyond those core constituencies?
Question #1 is whether they can finally manage to marshal a crowd of 100,000 or more in NYC. That would prove that they are making inroads. Well, let me back off. A crowd of 100,000 in NYC would prove that they are not dead yet, but it would take a crowd of 250,000 or more on multiple days to prove that they are making inroads. A one-time crowd of 100,00 would not prove very much.
A crowd of 50,000 would not prove very much either, except that they aren't as representative of the 99% as they claim.
I can see them getting 15,000 people as they did in the fall at one joint rally. Who knows, maybe with all the promotion and this basically being a "do or die" moment for the movement, they could get 25,000, tops. But even 25,000 or even 35,000 would still be a mediocre turnout for a group that claims to represent 99% of Americans.
A turnout of 10,000 would be about inline with my expectations. Or maybe only 5,000.
OTOH, given that a lot of sane people might be worried that the anarchists within the movement will seek to force confrontation and conflict with the police and even revel in a riot, the turnout could be much more limited. Given current economic anxieties, a good percentage of students and union members might seek to stay away from a fracas which could do more harm than good to their near-term economic prospects. So, in that case, maybe only 1,000 to 2,500 may show up.
My best estimate is between 2,500 to 25,000.
It is likely to be "decent" as protests go, but far below what such an ambitious movement seeks to achieve. I mean, they should have been able to marshal 100,000 back in the fall, and never came close.
Their number one obstacle is not the police or even apathy, but the simple fact that the economy continues to incrementally improve and unemployment continues to incrementally decline, both of which continue to drain potential supporters from the movement.
All of that is for the protest rally portion of the so-called general strike. The real question is how many workers will walk off their jobs in sympathy with the protesters. I suspect not many. Too many people really are dependent on their jobs and unwilling to risk them for a rally of dubious real economic value.

White House Correspondents' dinner - symptomatic of what is wrong with America and Washington

For two days in a row (or has it been three?), the top news stories in Google News have been about the White House Correspondents' Dinner. To me, this obsession is symptomatic of what is most wrong with America and Washington. The media and Hollywood are the two biggest institutions that do the most to misrepresent and distort reality in America and Washington. The emphasis on celebrity, glamor, gossip, drama , innuendo, scandal, paranoia, and titillation do a great injustice to average Americans by simultaneously misrepresenting what is important as well as distracting people from what is important.
This obsession with entertainment and frivolity while the rest of the nation struggles with various forms of economic distress and six million Americans are still looking for work for several years now, is quite appalling, not to mention outright disrespectful.
You would have thought that at least they would have tried to tone it down at least a little bit, but no, they simply go over the top again, reemphasizing the "out of touch" aspect of both the media and Hollywood, not to mention the politicians and even professionals in Washington who willingly go along for the joy ride.
There actually is a lot of good in Washington, but this annual dinner manages to emphasize the worst aspects of the character of the elite in America. The good news is that it is only one evening and next week things will be back to "normal."

-- Jack Krupansky

Is money speech?

I keep hearing proponents of political finance reform complaining that the supreme court has ruled that "money is speech", when it simply isn't true. The court has not ruled that money itself is "speech", but simply that attempts to control and limit money spent on political speech is implicitly an attempt to control and limit speech. It really is that simple, but people continue to erroneously assert that the court has ruled that "money is speech."
My understanding is that the government is still able to regulate money spent on political speech, but simply is not permitted to regulate in a way that has the effect of stifling anyone's speech.
In short, money is not speech and the supreme court has not asserted that money is speech, but any otherwise protected speech that is curtailed by limitations on political spending is speech that has been infringed, and therefore the First Amendment right to freedom of speech has been violated.
Granted, proponents of political finance reform are seeking "fairness" and to "level the playing field", but however laudable those goals might be on a partisan political basis, they don't automatically trump constitutional protections.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Is Occupy Wall Street about to do itself in?

The Occupy Wall Street crowd has been calling for a May 1 "May Day General Strike", hoping it would really kick start (restart) this now-lame and moribund movement, but I haven't heard much chatter about even this latest effort gaining much traction. Now, I read that Occupiers, or parties unknown, are calling for a "Wildcat Strike" and an unpermitted march. This smacks of desperation to me, but it will be a great test of whether support for the Occupy movement is deepening and broadening among the general public, or continuing to fizzle and dissipate.
A "wildcat", unpermitted march will probably "feel good" to the lingering activist core of Occupy, but could also backfire and further alienate them from the general public. Illegal activity can certainly gain attention, but attention does not imply support.
No matter what, this will be a great test of the movement.
Right now, the odds are against them, but ultimately it is up to average Americans to decide whether the Occupy movement has enough appeal and relevance. A gradually recovering economy is probably the movement's worst enemy (besides apathy.)

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Romney still has no credible chance to beat Obama

Despite some polls that suggest that Romney is giving Obama a run for his money, Romney has essentially zero chance of beating Obama in November. The polls simply reflect Romney with a ghost none-of-the-above running mate that enables him to poll much better than if he had an actual (and likely conservative) running mate.
Given existing animosity and lackluster interest towards Romney from right-wing conservatives, it is very unlikely that his running mate will be as moderate as himself. A running mate even just a little less moderate and just a little more conservative than himself will instantly move a number of independents over towards Obama.
And the odds are that he will be forced to pick a reasonably conservative running mate to avoid an outright mutiny in the Republican party ranks.
The Real Clear Politics average of recent polls is showing Obama having a 3.1% lead over Romney. Intrade is showing Obama at 60.1%.
As long as the economy continues to limp along and actually make a little progress, Obama is golden. There is very little that he can do wrong at this stage. He has a solid track record of doing enough things "good enough" to maintain reasonable traction.
As I like to say, all Obama has to do is smile and keep his shoes shined, and occasionally buff up his flag pin (or take off his jacket and roll up his sleeves, which is equivalent to wearing the flag pin.)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

My effective tax rate is 23.3%

Since this seems to be all the rage (figuratively and literally!), I'll disclose that my own effective tax rate is 23.3%, for 2011. But, being self-employed, that includes full FICA, while an employee would not include the employer's share of FICA. Subtracting half of my FICA, would give an effective tax rate of 17.3%. My total income would put me roughly at the bottom of the top quintile (20% make more than me, but I make more than 80% of the households out there.) I am single and without dependents or significant charitable contributions, and a small amount of dividend income, a lot of which is tax-free in ROTH retirement accounts.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Oops, now even Reuters is lying about Buffett's secretary

The media has done a very poor job of accurately reporting the effective tax rate of the secretaries of both Obama and Buffett. The latest misstep is that even Reuters is reporting that "Buffett has said he pays a lower effective tax rate than his secretary" when Buffett didn't actually make a claim about "effective tax rate." As I blogged yesterday, Buffett is adding on FICA, both the FICA that his secretary pays and the employer-paid FICA (and presumably Medicate payroll tax as well.) This is NOT the proper calculation of "effective tax rate" – and Buffett never claimed it was. There is far too much nod-and-wink sleaziness going on over these allegations of secretary tax rates. And the media is not helping to clarify the matter.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

When the lying started about secretaries paying higher tax rates than their bosses

It was back in January that Warren Buffett claimed that his secretary was paying a higher tax rate than his secretary. His rate is claimed to be 17.4%, which I don't doubt, but he and his secretary claimed that her tax rate was 35.8%, which is flat out not mathematically possible since the highest marginal tax rate is only 35% (for income above $379,150), so her effective tax rate would be significantly below that 35% upper bound, especially for a secretary's salary. Even for Obama's secretary at $95,000 a year would have an effective tax rate of only 18.5%.
Buffett further claimed that his "survey" of the employees in his office showed showed that they were paying tax rates of 33%  to 41%. Once again, those numbers are wholly out of line with the tax rates that the IRS levies on taxpayers.
Buffett did say that these rates are for "payroll and income taxes paid to the federal government", so he must be doing something odd with the numbers here. In theory, your "payroll taxes" are for FICA or Social Security and Medicare, which are really money being set aside for the future benefit of the taxpayer and are not normally considered part of "income tax."
I think the idea that Buffett is trying to slip by people (without disclosing it) is that since his own FICA is cut off at a threshold of around $110K, his FICA percentage is a very small number when measured on his large income, while his secretary's FICA is measured as a percentage on her entire income.
In an Op-Ed piece back in August (maybe the original source of the secretary reference) he also referred to "the income tax I paid, as well as payroll taxes paid by me and on my behalf", so he may be counting DOUBLE the actual FICA that his secretary actually pays (adding the FICA contribution that he as the employer pays) when he calculates her alleged "tax rate."
In short, Mr. Buffett appears to be NOT citing "effective tax rate", the proper rate form to use for comparing taxes paid, when he is talking about his secretary paying a higher tax rate than himself.
In other words, he is in fact LYING – by deliberately misleading people, with an intent to deceive.

What is the optimal role of liberals in America?

Conservatives and liberals each like to say that the other is "destroying America." I think that is a little too simplistic and rather misleading. I think both true conservatism and true liberalism have essential roles to play in American politics and economics and social affairs.
As even most liberals will insist, conservatives primarily seek to "protect business interests." That essential fact is true, but somehow liberals see that as a bad thing, by definition, rather than a good thing, by definition.
Ignoring the extremists of both parties, and focusing on moderates of both sides, here is what I view as the optimal role of liberals, true liberals, not far-left wing extremists.
We are primarily, first, and foremost a capitalist system where the vast bulk of economic activity is in the private sector, not government. Yes, the government does play a significant role in the economy, but it is the private sector that plays the dominant role. Unfortunately, liberals take that private sector role for granted, leaving only the conservatives to defend it.
The crux of the matter is that real people need social services independent of their absolute ability to financially afford such services at any given moment of time. The private sector does attempt to fill that gap with products and services such as insurance policies and credit of various sorts, as well as encouraging households to "save for rainy days." And for many people that works out fine, for most situations, most of the time.
But, as even most conservatives will admit, the private sector cannot service all social needs for all households all of the time. This is where liberals and government-provided services come into the picture, to fill the gap.
Sure, some left-wing liberals still insist that government should be responsible for 100% of social services, but the majority and moderate liberals seem comfortable with a social safety net that is mostly the private sector with the government filling the gaps.
There is also the lingering issue that there are still plenty of little and not so little gaps in services that are still unfilled or at least not filled in a consistent manner. It is here that liberals have a legitimate role, but only to the extent that they exercise due diligence in ferreting out what the proper and sustainable respective roles of government and the private sector are on filling those gaps. Unlike what the extremists will insist, it is not an all or nothing question.
In short, there are two roles here: 1) defending the private sector – the conservatives do that, and 2) assuring that the private sector or government fill in any gaps in social services – the liberals drive that side of the equation.
My main problem with a lot of liberals and their policies is that they do a lousy job of due diligence and assuring sustainability and focus too much on the visceral, partisan, "class warfare" thrill of "sticking it to the rich and business interests." Rarely do they attempt to "work with business" to come up with sustainable, hybrid solutions.
I think if liberals were to focus even a little more attention on the sustainability of both the private and public sectors, everyone would be a lot better off – except for the elitists who really are only it it for the visceral thrill of "class warfare" and "sticking it to the rich."
In short, the optimal role of liberals in America is to provide moral support the private sector and then to do the heavy lifting to help fill the gaps where there is a shortfall on the part of the private sector. The private sector has a role there, but neither has an exclusive role.
For example, the issue should not be whether government should be involved in health care, but working with the private sector to assure that they pursue a sustainable role in health care, and then to continue to work with the private sector to achieve a non-partisan call for government to sustainably fill the gap for any shortfall of coverage.
The odd thing currently is that while conservatives call for government to stay out of the private sector, liberals do a lousy job of clearly pointing out how if the private sector can't fill a gap in services then liberals should be reaching out to clearly show how the private sector can support a sustainable role by government in filling that gap. Again, the emphasis needs to be on "sustainable."
It is truly sad that here in a capitalist economy liberals feel more at comforting fighting "business interests" than reaching out and working with them.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

The political outlook for 2013

It seems quite clear to me (and backs it up with a 60.8% probability), that Obama will win in November. But, he is unlikely to get a friendly Congress to grease the skids for a smooth second term, at least in terms of pursuing a progressive liberal agenda.
Whether the Democrats retain a veto-proof majority in the Senate is quite unclear, but the odds are not strongly in their favor (in my view.) Even if they do retain a 60% majority, they are still likely to have enough moderates that only sensible, moderate, reasonably bipartisan legislation will make it through the Senate. And the House is even less likely to become "liberal-friendly" in 2013.
The "new" president will have to be a consensus-seeking, compromise-making, patient, bipartisan-friendly, community-organizing (congressional members being the community) leader. Sure, Obama can do it, if he puts his mind to it. I'm positive me can handle it, but his agenda will have to be either very limited or very moderate and bipartisan, or some hybrid thereof.
First up will be the "twin peaks" of expiration of of the Bush tax cuts and the impending budget sequester. (Expiration of the payroll tax cuts is somewhere in there as well, but I can't recall the exact timing.) In my view, both will occur despite reservations on both sides of the aisle and in the White House. Simply standing back and letting these two events occur is the easiest and safest (and best) decision for all parties. I am sure that there will be a number of efforts to roll back at least parts of both, but such efforts will be halfhearted at best. Everybody will be blaming everybody else, but nobody will be willing to do anything different.
Republicans don't want taxes to rise, but they are not willing to give the Democrats the satisfaction and "victory" of raising taxes only on "the rich." Democrats want to raise taxes (a lot), but don't want to take the heat for doing so. And there is zero chance that the Democrats will be willing to stomach big domestic spending cuts, but once again they don't want to take the heat for "busting the budget."
The sequester will be painful to both sides, not to mention that it could force a recession in 2013, but neither side is firmly behind anything resembling a solid bipartisan consensus for an alternative that does in fact seriously address the serious budget deficit, so the painful sequester is the least painful of readily available alternatives that have a ghost of a chance of being agreed upon, or at least mutually agreed to stand aside and do nothing.

Friday, April 13, 2012

An OMG moment for the Occupy Wall Street movememt

OMG indeed! The members of the Occupy Wall Street movement have discovered that if they obey the rules, the cops leave them alone! What a revelation for these people. It only took them six months to figure it out, even with a non-stop legal team supporting them. A 2000 court ruling had decreed that protesters could sleep on the sidewalk as a form of protest, provided that they not use more than half the sidewalk or block entrances or exits. So, now a bunch of small groups are occupy small strips of sidewalk in the vicinity of Wall Street and the New York Stock Exchange. They could have been doing this six months ago,, but didn't, in large part because their numbers were much larger and also a number of their members simply couldn't stomach the thought of obeying rules.
Unfortunately, this form of passive protest is rather boring and won't get a lot of attention except for the novelty of OWS members actually obeying rules for a change.
By definition, they can't "shut down" anything with this form of protest, so it will be interesting to see how long they are willing to keep it up.
But as long as they are obeying the rules, they are welcome to try to do it indefinitely.

Somebody's lying about somebody's taxes!

Hmmm... The White House is now claiming that the president's secretary had a HIGHER effective tax rate than the president, but that doesn't fit the facts. According to ABC News, his secretary "pays a slightly higher rate." His secretary "makes $95,000", supposedly. I checked with IRS Form 1040EZ, which is the worst possible scenario (no itemized deductions, mortgage interest, or charitable contributions or any of that) and came up with an effective tax rate of 18.5%, which is certainly BELOW the president's rate of 20.5%. Somebody is LYING here!
And as I pointed out earlier, the president's rate is as low as it is precisely because he has a boatload of charitable contribution deductions. If we believe that charitable contributions are a great value to society, that should be a GOOD thing, and would justify a lower tax rate.
But the big revelation and scandal here is that WE, the taxpayers, are paying $95,000 for a SECRETARY! Oh, right, they probably got her from GSA, those guys. Hmmm... I wonder how much Buffett pays his secretary.

Obama's effective tax rate

I had actually reviewed Obama's 2010 tax return recently, so I quickly latched onto his 2011 return when it came out today. Some interesting tidbits in there.
First, his 2011 return completely takes the wind out of the sails of his claims that "we need to change our tax code so that people like me, and an awful lot of Members of Congress, pay our fair share of taxes. Tax reform should follow the Buffett rule: If you make more than $1 million a year, you should not pay less than 30 percent in taxes." In 2010 he made more that $1 million, but in 2011 he only made about $800K ($844,585 total income, $789,674 adjusted gross income, and $496,376 taxable income), so his infamous "Buffett Rule" would NOT apply to him. Let's see if he adjusts his stump speeches accordingly from here on.
Second, the White House referred to his 20.5% effective tax rate, sort of implying that it was lower than a typical middle-class tax rate, which is completely false. I read recently that the median effective tax rate for the middle 20% of U.S. taxpayers is 13.3%, WELL below Obama's effective rate. More wind taken out of the sails.
Obama's effective tax rate was reduced significantly primarily due to a significant level of charitable contribution deductions ($172K). Without the "tax break" for those deductions, I calculate that his effective tax rate would have been 28.2%, still WELL above the tax rate of an average American without the high level of charitable contributions. I calculated that he saved $60K on taxes as a result of the charitable contribution deductions. Incidentally, Romney's 2010 effective rate was low in large part due to very large charitable contributions.
Every penny Obama made over $379,150 was taxed at a marginal tax rate of 35%. For a middle-class family making less than $100,000 (that's most people), their highest marginal tax rate is only 25%. No sign of any need for a "Buffett Rule" there.
This 30% number in "The Buffett Rule" seems rather arbitrary and completely unrelated to this separate issue of what a millionaire makes vs. the average middle-class worker.
For one important thing, it completely muddies the distinction between marginal rate and effective rate. "Bait and switch" is a sleazy form of rhetoric.
Even more important, the proposed rule doesn't even bother mentioning the whole point of the 15% capital gains rate: to encourage investment that will help grow the economy. That would be a terrible loss to both the economy and the government itself.
And what exactly do people think will happen to charitable contributions if the government starts telling people that if they take a tax deduction for charity their tax rate on the rest of their income will GO UP?!
That was actually a rhetorical question because there is absolutely ZERO chance that "The Buffett Rule" will get passed in Congress, so there isn't actually any need for anybody to worry about consequences.
-- Jack Krupansky

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Was George Zimmerman "depraved" when he shot Trayvon Martin?

I wasn't terribly surprised that the prosecutor decided to prosecute George Zimmerman for shooting Trayvon Martin, but the second-degree murder charge was an eye-opener. None of the "evidence" presented in the media to-date seemed to support that charge. Manslaughter or negligence maybe, but was George really "depraved"? It doesn't seem so.
I see that there are several possibilities to explain the charge:
  1. There is some secret evidence that the prosecutor has uncovered that has not yet come to light in the media. Hey, it is possible... but unlikely, especially since it would have to strongly contradict evidence already presented in the media.
  2. It was a "bone" thrown to the "enraged" African-American community. Even if the charge doesn't stick and George is acquitted, at least the family/community will have "had their day in court", which may be all they may really be after. In other words, George will ultimately walk, but the family/community can claim "justice was served" (sort of.)
  3. This is just the start, to get our attention, and the prosecution may eventually add a separate manslaughter charge (and possibly other charges) so that a jury could fall back to manslaughter or even assault or negligence if they find that the second-degree murder charge doesn't stick.
  4. This is just... "Florida Justice", as usual. Despite it's label and reputation as "The Sunshine State", much of the state is rather backwards, redneck, and rather Wild West in its "justice" system. In other words, the prosecution team will benefit from the high-profile prosecution of a greater charge, even if the case goes against them. It could be Casey Anthony all over again.
But, even if George does get off the hook with the criminal charge(s), he and the gated-community homeowner's association could well be targeted with one or more civil suits (ala OJ.)
As far as the "Stand Your Ground" law, I don't think George needs to invoke it. He is claiming self defense and that it was in the heat of a purported physical assault by Martin that he pulled the gun, so as long as the evidence doesn't contradict that claim, he will be able to claim that he had no opportunity to "retreat" after Martin (allegedly) initiated the (alleged) assault.

Is the Occupy Wall Street movement on the verge of breaking out or breaking down?

The Occupy Wall Street movement here in America (NYC in particular) was an offshoot of the previous anti-globalization movement(s) as well as various other environmental and social justice movements as well as the so-called Arab Spring. It was also heavily influenced by the various anti-capitalism social movements in Europe such as the Indignados in Spain. Although these various movements have a lot of common roots, themes, and even personalities, the Occupy movement in the U.S. is really in a whole separate category by itself. The U.S. government isn't even in the same ballpark as the various "Arab" governments. The labor situation in the U.S., including for new graduates, isn't even in the same ballpark as Europe. Sure, the U.S. government and Wall Street and the job market could be improved, but that is a very far cry from comparing them to Tunisia or Egypt or Spain or Italy or Greece. The Occupy movement doesn't seem to "get it." They do wonder why they are not seeing tens of thousands or 100,000 or more people regularly show up for protests, but they are too clueless to grasp the essential differences between the situation in the U.S. and elsewhere in the world. The simple truth is that the situation is not as desperate for the average American as it may be at other places around the globe. The simple truth is that if it was that bad then people really would be out in the streets in much greater numbers, but they're not.
The Occupy guys are struggling mightily to "raise an army" for a big "General Strike" and protest on "May Day", May 1, 2012. If things were as bad as they are claiming, such a strike/protest would be a slam-dunk no-brainer, but that apparently doesn't seem to be the case.
As I have said before, the Occupy movement could continue indefinitely as a relatively minor "protest movement", but there is essentially no evidence of the movement doing any serious growth. In my estimate, the Occupy Movement (at least in NYC) peaked in the middle of October (the one-month point) and then began a slow fizzle down. Occasionally they pop up, briefly, but then fizzle away again.
Ultimately, the future of the Occupy movement is not in the hands of its "leaders" and main activists, but in the hands of the American people. As long as the economy keeps stumbling along and employment doesn't slide a lot further, the average American will be too busy keeping up with work and family to divert much attention to a major commitment to the Occupy movement. This could change, but there is no significant evidence of such a change as of today.
In short, "May Day" may in fact be the make or break moment for the Occupy movement, at least in America and in NYC in particular. Interesting... I just realized that "May Day" is the traditional form for a distress call, so "May Day" is an appropriate name for this potentially Waterloo moment for the Occupy movement.

Monday, April 09, 2012

Mike Wallace and 60 Minutes

I used to love watching Mike Wallace on Biography when I was a kid. And he definitely raised the bar with his many early years with 60 Minutes. But, alas, later in its life 60 Minutes began to exemplify the steady decline in the quality of journalism in America. These days, I would not watch 60 minutes for any reason. It is now basically the epitome of "trash journalism." Wallace had a talent for picking his targets carefully and crafting his questions just as carefully. He was always laser-focused and dead-on. Both the questions and the answer had great value. These days, none of that is the case. Maybe 60 Minutes is actually the cause of its own diminished stature in that maybe most people in power know enough to stay away for fear that something, anything that might be even remotely embarrassing might pop up in an interview and that even the phrasing of questions or a moment of hesitation will be misread. Mike Wallace knew how to do it right, but those who have followed him simply don't have a clue. Yes, Mike's results were frequently sensational, but mostly because of the quality of his work, but these days the goal seems to be sensationalism at any cost and with as little attention as possibly to the quality of the work other than an obsession with slickness and edginess that hides and distorts the truth more than uncovers it.
In any case, here's to the good old days, the days of Mike Wallace in Biography and his early years in 60 Minutes.

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

The Occupy Movement: Rising Anarchy

Here's an interesting piece by security consultant Ian Oxnevad entitled "The Occupy Movement: Rising Anarchy" on the risks related to the so-called "Black Bloc" factions that are embedded within the Occupy movement. The bottom line is that while many or most of the participants in the Occupy movement, and Occupy Wall Street in particular, are peaceful and nonviolent and have plausibly reasonable agendas, there are darker elements involved that pose serious risks for society.

Sunday, April 01, 2012

April Fool's Day is a perfect fit for the Occupy Movement

Usually I cringe at the silliness of April Fool's Day, but I see that it is a perfect and natural fit for the Occupy Movement, where they tweet about the way things "should" be but "sadly" aren't. Actually, that sounds a lot like what they do most of the time anyway.
  • Bankers arrested! (NOT)
  • Brookfield properties renames Zuccotti Park to Liberty Square and gives Occupy Wall Street control (NOT)
  • Ray Kelly resigns as NYPD commissioner (NOT)
  • Walmart open to unionization (NOT)
  • Monsanto phases out GMOs (NOT)
  • Rush Limbaugh supports Planned Parenthood (NOT)
  • Moratorium on old-growth forest logging (NOT)
  • GOP supportive of women's reproductive rights (NOT)
  • Shell pledges money for oil spill cleanup (NOT)
  • TransCanada scraps plane for Keystone pipeline (NOT)
Hmmm... most of these items have nothing to do with Wall Street per se. That illustrates perfectly how un-focused the whole Occupy Wall Street movement has been.