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It was largely for his children's sake that he was pursuing an education on the other side of the earth -- for their future and, in some inchoate hope-filled way, for his country's future too. What he often said was that he wanted to be a bridge between the Islamic world and the West. None of the summer students in New Haven knew much about his personal circumstances; of his history they knew nothing at all. He had discussed it with the Yale admissions office, and with an administrator in the provost's office who during a dinner with him seemed concerned that he might be a spy. [1]

Occupy Wall Street is animated by a central, galvanizing idea -- that the distribution of wealth is unfair. That struck a very live nerve, grabbing something that was in the air and turning it into simple math: 1 percent should not live at the expense of the other 99 percent. Still, Occupy Wall Street left many all revved up with no place to go. In addition to the 5 W's -- who, what, when, where and why -- the media are obsessed with a sixth: what's next? Occupy Wall Street, for all its appeal as a story, is very hard to roll forward.

But if Occupy Wall Street seems inchoate and short on answers, it has plenty of company. The president has primed the pump over and over with borrowed federal largess and still jobs refuse to flow. The myriad Republican debates have become a kind of random gaffe generator with little in the way of serious public proposals. And by the way, there's another term for a gathering of politically committed people who make a lot of speeches and argue endlessly over process without producing much in the way of solutions: Congress.

[ via: 1, 2 ]

For a Movement, a Question: What Now?
Published: November 20, 2011
Without a physical anchor, a movement's way forward is unclear. But its impact may have already been made.


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