For those looking for the underlying reason behind the occupy protests, this sign pretty well sums it up.
If there were a line for the cost of living increase, it would make it crystal clear for even the most dense.
This is the reason why there are people occupying.
This is the reason that there are no individual demands – the problem needs a conversation, not some concrete manifesto that can be dismissed as hippie nonsense.
This is the reason that if things get worse, the protests WILL turn violent. It is inevitable.
But lets be clear about a few things:
Telling people to pull out of big banks and into small banks will accomplish squat. First because people will simply not do it in numbers to have any real meaning. Two, because that will simply make the small banks the big banks and they will behave exactly the same way.
Telling people to shop at small independent shops will also accomplish squat. First is that most people will simply not do it, even the people occupying won’t do it. Second, that ship has sailed. Your local Hardware store used to have 12 sinks in stock, but Home Despot started carrying 100, which killed the local store and if you have a local hardware store at all anymore, they only have one or two sinks, not twelve. I had my family hardware store of three generations robbed out from under me by Home Depot and Lowes and even I shop at them now. Its just the way it is.
Being against corporate greed is stupid. Corporations exist to make money, and if they are public they are accountable to their shareholders. It is literally illegal for them NOT to be greedy (eg: move in ways that make profit for the shareholders.) . Government and the public sector exist to keep corporate greed in check and to provide services that corporate greed would work against. Unfortunately we are infected with a right wing virus in this country that wants to do away with this.
The problem is not too much government. The problem is too little. No matter how bad you think the government is, they are at least accountable to you in terms of your vote, with a corporation you get nothing.