I think it’s safe to say the Occupy Wall Street experiment as a political force is over. Sorry, Carter, it was born a political zombie, and it only became more rancid over time.
The left wing in America can’t resist rambling stoners, malcontents, and Grateful Dead camp followers. For a while, they tried to superimpose some sort of political meaning to the group -- income inequality, workers’ rights, and the like. But nothing ever took root, because OWS was never serious in the first place. It diminishes any societal or political point you want to make when you oppose organized sanitation.
As everyone knows, zombies never really die, so it is possible the OWS movement will infest public space again. But they won’t be forming the core of Obama reelection rallies — or at least he hopes not. Only the most marginal Democratic officials would appear in close proximity to an OWS assembly.
Perhaps OWS, in some form, played into a Democratic longing to create more of a political connection to some sector of the population. Even if it is class warfare, Democrats do have to represent a class — but OWS never truly constituted a class, or even a sub-class, to begin with. Arguably, only the most misguided fully committed to joining the OWS camps. If, as Carter rightly states, the American dream is to work hard and play by the rules to achieve success, the OWS-ers are doing neither.
Other Americans who may be concerned about issues such as income inequality could not identify with OWS as a movement, particularly after observing increases in violence, disrespect of the police, disease outbreaks in the camps, and the lack of a coherent message.
For those of us who don’t live near one of the protest sites, the OWS movement supplied some comic relief, but they were never destined to survive the onset of inclement weather. Good riddance.