The folks at Moveon.org, who are a million strong, say they are fed up with the status quo. Fed up with the deep and ever-widening inequality in wages and taxes. Fed up that nothing much is being done in Washington to address this serious issue. So they are taking matters into their own hands with a "Tax The One-Percent" protest in New York City and around the country on Tuesday, April 17--which is today.
The protest in NY starts at 4 p.m. at Bank of America Tower across from Bryant Park in Manhattan. Moveon.org writes in an email that they are taking a stand, fighting for:
".....the 1% to pay their fair share of taxes. While most of us pay taxes for schools, roads, and other vital services—billionaires and 1% companies like Wells Fargo and GE pay nothing. That's why we're protesting, marching, and rallying in hundreds of cities to tell the 1% that it's time to pay their fair share."
2011 saw an influx of protests in the U.S. as well as around the globe. The 2007-8 financial crisis pushed many social issues to the forefront and the current tax code which allows the less than one percent millionares and billionaires to get out of payimg their fair share have many outraged. The Bush era decade-long tax breaks also add to the growing imbalance and poverty, many critics say.
No one shone a brighter spotlight on this than the Occupy Wall Street protests, which started in September 2011 in New York City. Clashes with police and city officials, criticism from the Right and support from the Left, went on for months until Mayor Blomberg's tactics, the winter cold and time eroded and reduced the crowds in Zucotti Park to a trickle. Across the country, protests in places like Oakland, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Texas and others also dwindled over time.
Many citizens are clearly disillusioned, frustrated and fighting mad -- but are the protests working?
Washington seems to be marching along on it's disfunctional "merry way." Wall Street, big "bailed-out" banks and the rest of the financial district are doing business as usual. The poor continue to sink even deeper into poverty. Foreclosed homes sit there empty as families are displaced, and the homeless in NYC continue to sleep in subways, parks, tunnels and any place they can eke out some semblance of shelter.
Meanwhile, our mayor and his food police worry about the homeless salt, fat and fiber intake rather than where they lay their heads at nights, passing laws that prohibit food donations to homeless shelters.
Is the "Establishment" of big money and even bigger corruption proving too powerful to crack? If so, what do the discontented masses to do next after they're all out of peaceful protests?