Occupy Wall Street started as a joke. The movement lured in thousands of freeloaders, street criminals and political provocateurs who, when mixed together, created a national clown show. Occupy Wall Street is the creation of Adbusters, a Canadian magazine that specializes in the satire of commercialism and the promotion of anarchy.
On July 13, 2011, Culture Jammers, a blog connected to Adbusters, twittered to it’s anarchist followers this: “Are you ready for a Tahrir moment?” The blog urged its rabble-rousers to gather 20,000 followers and flood lower Manhattan with one simple demand. The blog told its followers to build a tent city, complete with soup kitchens and barricades.
The plan called for occupiers to build momentum and later vote on what the one demand would be. The demand must “awaken the imagination,” said the Culture Jammer blog, and “propel us toward the radical democracy of the future.” The blog urged the anarchists to “put our asses on the line to make it happen.”
Around the second week of September 2011, the blog published a call-to-action with this title: “Hey President Obama, Get Ready for our One Demand.”
In the manifesto, the blog ruminated on what the one demand might be. The blog suggested an “END THE MONIED CORRUPTION OF AMERICA MANIFESTO.” The blog, with the keyboard stuck in caps, urged its tribe to publicly deliver a diatribe based on the above demand to the White House and American press.
On September, 17, 2011, a howling ragtag army of freeloaders, agitators, hippies, anarchists, street people and criminals marched into Zuccotti Park in the Wall Street Financial District and Occupy Wall Street was born.
The Occupy Wall Street infection spread to other cities across America. Nobody in these encampments could articulate why they were there or what their purpose might be. Residents of the Occupy Wall Street movement simply sat around and demanded everything and nothing.
Some demanded free pizza. Others wanted free laptop computers and took them from other Occupy Wall Street protesters. Nobody demanded a bath.
Occupy Wall Street started as satire, descended into farce and ended as a joke.