The Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street movements were both born out of the despair following the 2008 financial crisis, and both have tapped into the public’s anger over the unfairness of bank bailouts and huge bonuses for the risk takers while the rest of the country has struggled with unemployment, falling home prices and anemic economic growth.
Yet the elite media has constantly vilified the peaceful Tea Party as right-wing rabble for prodding politicians to do nothing more than reduce the bloat of government.
Meanwhile, politicians, the press — and now CEOs — have generally celebrated Occupy Wall Street as the second coming of the civil-rights movement — no matter how many times its followers have clashed with police in the name of Mao and Che Guevara.
And the worst part about these unfair depictions of the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street?
There’s no end in sight.
I can’t remember a single instance in which the chief executive of a major bank or conglomerate has said something nice about the Tea Party’s goals of limited government, lower taxes and free markets — the very things upon which this country was founded.
But such business leaders as GE chief executive Jeffrey Immelt and Blackrock chief Larry Fink have been falling all over themselves trying to say nice things about the OWS protesters, their grievances and rants against capitalism — even while the unwashed mob is nearly rioting not far from their corporate headquarters.
Even worse is the political correctness of the warped media coverage. Reporters covering the Tea Party, no doubt in hopes of delegitimizing its goals, have almost never missed an opportunity to point out that the majority of its followers were older, “angry” white men.
But when was the last time you heard them describe the squatters in Zuccotti Park as young and white?
By any objective measure, that’s what the protesters are — but somehow that’s missing from the coverage.
Also missing is some real, in-depth reporting on the protests. While the media couldn’t wait to find out which conservative kingpins allegedly were behind the Tea Party rallies, they have almost no interest in describing how organized labor is arguably becoming the largest backer of Occupy Wall Street.
New York City’s United Federation of Teachers, for instance, is donating tens of thousands of dollars in office space and food to make life easier for the protesters — but that somehow doesn’t qualify as front-page news.
What does is pretty much a joke. Reporters from such respected business publications as the Financial Times and the Economist are demanding to know from Goldman Sachs, a firm high on Occupy Wall Street’s list of evil-doers, whether its CEO Lloyd Blankfein will join Immelt and Fink in supporting the movement, I am told.
Goldman so far is staying quiet, but given the pressure to say something positive about the protests, it’s anyone’s guess how long Blankfein will hold out.
Maybe the biggest irony in all of this is that while Occupy Wall Street demands justice in the name of Mao and turns Zuccotti Park into a cesspool, one of the biggest achievements of the Tea Party is that it has long stopped being solely a “protest” movement. There are now Tea Party members of Congress, and both parties have been forced to consider fiscal restraint because of the power of the Tea Party message.
Imagine how much the Tea Party would have achieved if it had even half of the media support of Occupy Wall Street.
Originally published at NewYorkPost.