Yet there are those out there who are still keen on dismissing OWS outright, as though it were some sort of aberration among the masses that fails to reflect upon the rest of America, despite how Americans across the country are standing in solidarity with their brethren in Zuccotti Park. Apparently, David Brooks of the New York Times feels this way about the movement.
Similarly, if you look only at the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street movements that have been getting so much coverage in the news media, you know very little about the wider America. Most Americans seem to understand this. According to data from the Pew Research Center, they are paying less attention to the Occupy Wall Street movement than any other major story — less than Afghanistan, Amanda Knox, the 2012 election, the death of Steve Jobs and far, far less than news about the economy.
This, despite the amount of solidarity shown across the nation. The above isn't an accurate reflection of the news stories Americans believe are important to them, so much as it's a telling reflection of what Brooks and other "Very Serious People" believe should be worthy of America's collective attention.
Quietly and untelegenically, Americans are trying to repair their economic values.
There's more than one way to dismiss OWS. In this instance, all one has to do is separate the protesters from "ordinary Americans" who are piecing together their shattered financial security, then contrast the "camera-hungry" protesters against other Americans who are "quietly working" behind the scenes. Al-Jazeera, the news outlet that conservatives and "Very Serious People" wanted Americans to dismiss throughout the War on Terror, has a great piece on how the media marginalizes dissenting movements such as OWS.
America went through a similar values restoration in the 1820s. Then, too, people sensed that the country had grown soft and decadent. Then, too, Americans rebalanced. They did it quietly and in private.
The main point driven home is Occupy Wall Street's lack of necessity when it comes to rebuilding the country's shattered finances, as it will be done by ordinary Americans who will surely pull themselves up by their bootstraps and get back to work. Brooks goes so far as to pat Americans on the back for disavowing credit cards and debt without realizing how many Americans had to rely on debt instruments just to survive, and without realizing that being flat busted broke is the biggest reason Americans are ditching credit cards in the first place.
No mention is ever made about the financial sector playing a role in America's economic meltdown or how it encouraged the finance of expensive lifestyles with dubious debt instruments. The role of corporations in shedding jobs as a method of inflating their own worth and executive bonuses goes unmentioned. As far as Brooks and other "Very Serious People" are concerned, these entities weren't responsible for the current economic crisis, therefore such discussions aren't necessary. Instead, fault lies with ordinary Americans who should have known better and a government that constantly gets in the way of "job creators."
The "Very Serious People" are vexed how OWS continues to stand outside of "Serious" influence and ignore "Serious" advice given by "Very Serious" pundits and opinion-makers, most of whom themselves are ridiculously disconnected from the lives and ordeals of ordinary Americans. Brooks himself probably wonders at times why the rabble in Zuccotti Park couldn't just stop being such mindless hippies and piss off elsewhere, so the "Very Serious People" can once again represent America's clearing house of great minds when it comes to solving America's most pressing issues.
Occupy Wall Street represents a method of bringing important issues to light without relying on mainstream media to green-light their voice and without seeing the media repackage said voice for further acceptability among center-right and conservative interests. Not being able to role-play as the arbiters of the angered American voice scares guys like Brooks, because otherwise they'd be paid hacks consigned to the margins of genuine American free speech and political action.