Friday, November 4, 2011

Occupy Cedar Rapids

So I was out for a run today and much to my surprise I came across our local faction of the "occupy" movement. It was a pathetic sight, about 5 makeshift tents, a few signs, a flag and 2 people milling about. One was a twenty something everyday average guy and the other was an old hippy (hey if your older than me and still rocking the pony tail your a frickin hippy.)

Ok so not to intimidating and I don't think any riots will be starting there as the spot the are "occupying' is a vacant lot in a flooded out section of town well off the main drag. I just happened to run by them totally at random. However seeing these yahoos got me thinking about this whole Occupy Wall Street movement.

I don't necessarily disagree with everything these people are saying, and as the saying goes I would defend their right to say it. And even though the original Wall Street occupiers may have had a message and an agenda it is my impression that this message has gotten garbled and the whole thing has turned into a circus. I was listening to NPR (yes I listen to NPR) and they were interviewing some occupiers about what they were going to do with all the money that had been donated. Some of the people were lamenting the fact that other occupiers were looking for free handouts ( I laughed at that one). As one of the people said "Since when does a revolution need a 501c?"

I guess my main issue with the whole sordid mess is these people seem to want to get something for nothing and if they can't have it they want to drag others down to their level. This my friends is the direct result of 50 years of handing out "winner" ribbons to every kid who runs a race and empathizing and getting to know the feelings of others. All this hand wringing and psychological posturing has done is give us a generation of "where's mine?" Instead of trying to make their own way these people are jealous of the so called 1%. They claim they are the 99%.. well skippy I make less than 100,000 dollars a year (way less) so I damn sure know I am the 99% and you don't represent me.

What happened to earning what you get? I am not jealous of the rich in this country, if they get to pay less taxes,good for them. I hope to be rich someday and if not I at least hope everyone gets to pay less taxes. I am pretty libertarian (small l) in my views, and I think people ought to pull themselves up and earn there own way. Sometimes you need some help sure but just because you need help doesn't mean you have to take stuff from the guy over there, just because he has more than you. Why can't you both have more? Why can't we all strive to be prosperous. Why can't we all work hard and earn what is due us to the best of our ability? Everyone doesn't get to be the CEO people, somebody has to clean the toilets. Be happy with who you are, always do your best and wherever that takes you is where you are supposed to be. Like that great philosopher Yoda said " There is do or do not, there is no try!"

You know why I run? Because good health is not given to you. You have to earn it, you have to earn it everyday. However as I get older I get less and less healthy no matter how hard I try. That is natural, its called aging. Nature doesn't owe me anything because I can't run as fast as I used to and I am less flexible and my hair is gray. Should I go "occupy" high school and complain about how all these kids are in the prime of their lives? Should I require them to color their hair gray and put on fat suits so I can keep up with them?

I spent 22 years in the United States Army, 14 years as a Special Forces operator. I have attended and passed some of the most ardous and physically demanding training in the world. At one point in my life I was an elite killing machine, you know what I am now? Well I am not that anymore. Why is that? Because I no longer can keep up, should I "occupy" Ft. Bragg and demand I be taken back? All that is ridiculous you say? I totally agree,just as ridiculous as some person complaining that they have 30,000 dollars in student loan debt and they can't find a job. Instead of getting a job, any job and earning a better life they would rather whine and blame it on the rich.

I have run marathons, jumped out of planes, been shot at, shot at people, been cold, wet and hungry. All that experience has taught me is that life has winners and losers. Life also has taught me that blaming your troubles on others does squat for you. Heck its even in the Bible "Thou shalt not covet your neighbors goods". Wake up, fight through the ambush. Quit your bitchin and do something with your life.

News flash skippy...everybody doesn't get everything. That's life, your job is to earn the best life you can. Be productive,contribute to society..earn it

That is all


  1. Another excellent piece and I'm once aqgain, right there with you. There is merit to some of the message, whatever that is and garbled as that it, from the Occupy X movement. There have been many substantial and fairly terrifying changes in the basic fabric of our financial system the last few years. I'd start with reinstating Glass-Steagall. Again, especially for a fellow meathead, you are an impressive intellect and i always enjoy the read. Thanks!

  2. "However seeing these yahoos got me thinking about this whole Occupy Wall Street movement." Mission accomplished!

  3. Thinking about does not equal agree with anymore than look at equals admire

  4. Brother, you hit the nail on the head. "50 years of giving winner ribbons out to every kid who ran the race...." And the the President laments the fact that the idea of the "American Dream" is dying. I think their understanding of the American Dream is a little different than ours.