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Steve Winter
State Representative District 3

October 28, 2011
"Occupy Wall Street vs Tea Partiers"

Steven Winter represents the towns of Newbury and Sutton, Merrimack District 3, in the NH House of Representatives.

Representative Winter is a member of the House Executive Department & Administration  Committee, The Special Committee on Public Employee Pension Reform and the Joint Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules (JLCAR).


"Every person should have a vote but no votes for corporations." 
Ė A sign held at the Occupy Wall Street protest

Ever since the Womenís Suffrage amendment in 1920 and the Voting Right Act of 1965, every American citizen of sufficient age and competency has had the right to vote. No corporations have ever had a right to cast a ballot. So what does that sign mean? No one seems to know.

The Occupy Wall Street (OWS) protests have been much in the news recently. A number of columnists have suggested that the movement is the liberal answer to the Tea Party movement, much in the news last year and a large influence on the conservative side of the political spectrum. How do the two movements compare?

The quote above left me scratching my head and even laughing a bit. These folks, who have seen their movement spread across America in many if not most large cities, seem to have no inkling of what they want to destroy or what they want to support.

I laughed out loud at a clip I saw of the original New York version of the OWS with a man on a bull horn yelling, "What do we want?" The crowdís answer was, "We donít know!" He then shouted, "When do we want it?" "Now!"

If that is not a sign of incoherence and ineptitude, I donít know what is. These folks rail against banks, corporations, and anyone who has shown success at providing what the consumer wants or needs while they wear their "Old Navy" shirts, Levi pants, and Nike sneakers. They advertise their gatherings on their Apple iPhones via Facebook and mourn the passing of Steve Jobs, an icon of the innovative new world technology and, before his untimely death, one of the wealthiest men in the world.

Virtually every week, we read on these pages the sarcastic references to the Tea Party, Free Staters, and libertarians in our state legislature. Yes, we have those people in our legislature. They are the folks who have either moved here or, as long-time citizens, helped organize a rational conservative alternative in New Hampshire. They have contributed and become part of the process.

They are proud that they helped to reduce our spending by over 10% in the last budget and balanced that budget without increased taxes. I am friends with a number of them. Some were elected three years ago and many others last year. The chairman of my standing committee, the Executive Departments and Administration Committee is a Free Stater. The chair of a sub-committee on which I serve is a Free Stater. Others that I know are libertarian Tea Partiers.

A friend has summed up the OWS movement well: "They are more like squatters out on a lark than stalwart individuals with a social conscience. Their protests are unintelligible and they seem only to want for free what others have earned. They are automatons mindlessly chanting back incomprehensible lines that someone has fed to them.  Real protesters have a real message."

Steve Winter, Representative, Merrimack District 3
Newbury and Sutton, New Hampshire 

Telephone:  603-271- 3125 and 271-3319

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