Richard Cohen is at it again. I read him so you don’t have to. Today, he is here to defend the honor of the Occupy protesters against charges of anti-Semitism. But once he is done setting the record straight on that score, he wants to make sure that no one accuses him of having any sympathy for the dirty hippies who are smoking dope in Lower Manhattan. You are going to love this stuff.
Occupy Wall Street has become an event for its own sake, a destination for the aimless. It is something that occurs on countless iPhone cameras, a tourist attraction with the usual vendors, the usual zaftig young women doing the usual arrhythmic dance, somehow missing the beat of many drums. The nostalgic scent of pot wafts occasionally through the air, and I feel so much younger. This, I’m sure, will bring an end to the Vietnam War.
Fat, stoned chicks who can’t dance. That’s what these protests are about. (By the way, CabinGirl beat me in Scrabble recently by using ‘zaftig’ for a triple-word score). Cohen has visited the OWS protests twice now, so he’s an expert on their views.
On a given day, I decide that Occupy Wall Street is about nothing and then I decide it is the Herman Cain campaign in aggregate, just a media event that has captured the flea-thoughts of many Americans. Then I decide it is an incoherent articulation of anger at the institutions that have failed us, including — by way of both self-pity and self-flagellation — the media. It seems, above all, a conspiracy to have left-leaning writers make jackasses of themselves by imparting grave and grand meaning to what is little more than a vast sleepover.
I like his use of the word ‘flea-thoughts.’ That’s very nice. I can see that Cohen still shares my initial impression of the Wall Street protests, which was that it was a tired and doomed exercise that distracted the left from the battles in Washington. But these protests have proven to have staying power and they’re adding franchises in new cities on a regular basis. They seem to have a little more significance than your average sleepover. In Oakland, the police seem particularly hostile. Why are they tear-gassing what is little more than a vast sleepover?
Also, too, Mr. Cohen forgot to complain about the patchouli.