Occupy Wall Street Celebrates Hurricane Sandy; A Response from the Heart of New Jersey
I’m in central New Jersey. The biggest problem is not water, but power. We don’t have power, and it is really cold tonight. You’re going to start to hear people say they don’t have food. I’m living off Pop Tarts right now.
What I’m seeing around here is just devastation. There are trees all over the place. There are pieces of people’s houses on the ground. There are people who can’t get any help to them, people with medical conditions. I ran into somebody here who was telling me they have an elderly person with them and it’s difficult for them.
It’s utter devastation around the whole state. For Occupy Wall Street to take advantage of it and talk about capitalism...
If anything, capitalism is the answer. I heard Gov. Chris Christie talking tonight on the radio in my car about how New Jersey has been trying to pass a statute to penalize the two power companies $25,000 per day if they fail to restore service (the fine is currently $100). There is no better driver than profit. That’s what everyone is saying--that the power companies are slow to respond to people until it hurts them financially.
In the past, they’ve been--they were very non-responsive in the past. But after Hurricane Irene last year, they really took hits to their reputation for taking so long, for not being prepared.
So this time around, they were prepared in advance--they had teams coming into town even before the storm started. The government can order people to respond to things, but that’s not necessarily going to do anything. Money is what is making them respond--and that’s capitalism.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo was also on the radio, using the storm to try to make a climate change argument. He said that people say this is a once-in-a-lifetime thing, but we are seeing once-in-a-lifetime things all the time now, and he was trying to push for all these regulations. It was just a completely opportunistic speech.
And I was just rolling my eyes the entire time. Like meteorologist Joe Bastardi said, the people blaming this on climate change are crazy. That’s not what it is at all. The way to look at it is why doesn’t this happen more often--it’s happened more often before. It has nothing to do with climate change.
It plays into the whole fantasy world that these Occupy people live in.
I’m assuming that we’re going to be without power for about a week, when all’s said and done. But if it were to go on longer, I don’t think people would understand what we’d start to see. People are going to start to run out of food if this lasts for too long. The Occupy people don’t see it that way. They just think it’s fun and games.
The good side of things--maybe this is an area where we could agree with Occupy--is that it’s events like this that make people come together. For instance, my mom--the trees came down all around her, and the neighbor was trapped in her house. My parents don’t have a good relationship with that neighbor, but my stepfather went over to make sure she was okay, and she said she was glad he had come over, because it turned out she was trapped, and he managed to get her free. People tend to come out and help each other.
But I don’t look at that as being fallout from being anti-capitalist. It’s just human nature.
As far as capitalism goes, capitalism is what gives people the ability to be that way. I don’t think my father would have even noticed what was going on over there if he hadn’t been able to think about the things he owns, and the people he cares about. Occupy Wall Street seems to think that that’s the way it would be without capitalism, and that’s not realistic.
I was really incensed the other night when Occupy Wall Street tweeted out a picture of Occupy Goldman Sachs, and there were a bunch of them laying out in tarps on the street in New York. My problem with these people is they don’t think about the first responders. They don’t have any respect for average citizens--first responders are people, too.
I would like to see Occupy try to live where they don’t have their cell phones and their iPads, and they can’t all communicate with each other. We’re suffering already because our food is starting to spoil. While it’s cold, it’s not cold enough to keep the ice from melting. You don’t realize how much you rely on power and stores and capitalism until it’s taken away from you.
And if they had to live a week without it, I don’t think they’d do very well. They couldn’t even go dumpster diving, because no one has anything to throw away. It’s like the seventeenth century out here. They obviously fail to understand.