A Perfect Cartoon Summary of Occupy Wall Street

This very short short by New York animation legend Candy Kugel and Rick Broas serves as a great summary of the Occupy Wall Street movement. Even though it was made a couple months before the protests began, Little Piggies captures the frustration of many Americans with politicians in Washington–Democrats and Republicans alike–who collude with corporations and lobbyists at the expense of the other 99 percent. Many Americans feel it’s time for corporations to stop dictating the country’s policies and for a restoration of genuine public service by the government. That’s why thousands will be marching in downtown Manhattan this afternoon and why I’ll be among them.


  • Opus

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  • http://dailygrail.com/ Red Pill Junkie

    Good for you, Amid!

    Are there other artists/animators planning to attend the Manhattan march?

  • http://www.segaltoons.com Steve Segal

    Bravo, Amid! Try not to get arrested.

  • Bruce Wright

    Nice!

    So what’s up with the media coverage of this protest? If 100 people show up for a two-hour “Tea Party Rally”, the media’s got ten cameras there. Yet thousands of people can march on the banks and camp out and build a Hooverville right on Wall Street for WEEKS, and you hear nothing.

    Guess it’s because the Tea Party had corporate sponsorship and its own 24-hour ‘news’ network.

    Did you see the clip where the Fox news reporter talks to the guy at the protest, and the Fox guy was like ‘hey, you need us. Talk to us, we’re the only way people can hear your story.’ It’s not just Fox. It’s ALL the news outlets. They really think that way, that they’re the gatekeepers for all information.

    I read someone who said that if it’s young people by the thousands complaining that they can’t get a job, then they’re hippies. But if it’s some loud guy in a tri-corn hat with tea-bags hanging from it yelling in the middle of a town hall meeting for Obama to keep his Socialist Kenyan hands off his Medicare, then truly the American Vox Populus has spoken.

    Time to march on the Corporate News Media as well. Millions out of work, the first generation in decades who have living standards worse than their parents, the end of the iconic “American Dream” and the most important thing on the news is some femme fatale in Italy.

    Blech.

    • Paul N

      But Bruce, don’t you know that the mainstream media is liberal?

    • Mike

      Um, Bruce, have you seen the people who are protesting on Wall Street? Granted, not all of them are dressed in dirty fatigues, with long hair and scruffy faces, but to those who are—trust me—a good shave and a bath and a nice suit will greatly increase your chances of finding employment. Now, it won’t guarantee a job, but it certainly won’t hurt.

      • Bruce Wright

        Mike, MILLIONS of Americans are out of work or working multiple jobs to make ends meet because their former good jobs got sent out of the country.

        The economy isn’t in the state it’s in because millions of Americans *didn’t shave.*

        It’s exactly this kind of flip “get a haircut!” non-conversation about what the nation has come to that makes it so HARD to solve the problems we face. The victims are so easy to blame.. after all, if they somehow just worked harder they could all be rich.

        You don’t get to double digit unemployment, a manufacturing base that’s atrophied horribly, lower standard of living for an entire generation, the shrinking middle class, etc because the people with NO power somehow didn’t flip enough burgers or greet enough shoppers at their minimum-wage job. It’s about the phenomenal power and wealth gap, and the fact that those in power make the rules for gaining wealth.

        We really need to be having a conversation about why our economy was set up so that you can make more money by having money than you can by working. Think about it, the best paying job in America is being rich and letting your money ‘work for you’. That’s ludicrous.

        Also, where can I sign up to get Mitt Romney’s tax rate? He’s a multi-millionaire and he pays like 14%. How can I get THAT deal?

      • Mike

        Oh, I agree with pretty much everything you say… but really… is it possible to be a revolutionary and own a razor? Gillete didn’t cause the economy to collapse.

      • Bruce Wright

        :-)

  • Rick R.

    When did I wander into a political site?

    I actually agree in as much as I honestly think the Harvard MBA program was designed by Soviets to bring down capitalism from the inside (a program working perfectly, as far as I can tell), but is this the time and the place?

    • tgentry

      It’s animation and it’s relevant to current events. Why not?

    • amid

      Did you read the post above this one about the cartoon exhibit at the Met? Politics have been intertwined with cartoons for hundreds of years. And frankly, as someone who harbors no political affiliations, I don’t consider this to be a political issue so much as a social justice issue. If you’re not interested in the topic, just skip the post and read everything else on here.

      • Rick R.

        Fair enough. I’ve just seen a lot of coverage of this on political sites.

  • Stephen M. Levinson

    I don’t understand what exactly they’re trying to accomplish by protesting wallstreet. What change do they want to see that will satisy their protest and leave? What exactly do they want? Are they protesting greed? Corruption?

    And by the way that animation is extremely one sided, saying bankers and corporations are the only ones at fault. Everyone is a little bit at fault, yet the government, people and natural economic cycles are also to blame.

    • amid

      Stephen, The animation places blame equally on politicians and corporations. That’s why they all collectively say “Wee wee” at the end, and turn into each other.

      • Stephen M. Levinson

        Okay I see that now. I had to re watch it.

        But the animation still doesn’t take into account that It’s not just the government and corporations. It’s the people too and natural economic cycles that are also to blame.

      • Jason H

        I’m not really sure how you think it’s the people’s fault. Spreading the blame around means there’s no one to blame. This isn’t a political issue.

        The majority of America know our financial system is broken. This isn’t a left vs right issue.

      • Stephen M. Levinson

        Everyone is essentially at fault. Some obviously alot more than others. Politics and Corporations coming together for bailouts and quantitative easing is ludicrous. But the fact is, people signed loans and mortgages they couldn’t afford. Same thing with credit cards, they bought things they couldn’t afford.

        But that’s what happens in economic cycles. Everyone starts feeling good. People take out mortgages on homes they can’t really afford, spend with credit cars they can’t really afford and the banks feel good about giving loans and don’t really look into seeing how likely it is that the loans are paid back because they make interest on the loans and everything is going great. When everyone is feeling good about the economy it builds up to a point where people live beyond their means and where banks loan beyond their means.

        Then the economy crashes, everyone feels shitty about it, everyone blames everyone else for their misfortune and then over time people slowly start to feel better and make riskier moves and then it collapses. Then everyone feels shitty about it again, then it repeats. Over and over and over. It’s how economy works.

        There isn’t one person to blame. If the government stopped printing money, let the banks fail, the economy would collapse right now. And that is what should happened. But instead the government is printing money and postponing what is inevitable. People need to start feeling shitty about the economy, save, spend less, not take out loans for things they can’t afford.

        If the government let the economy collapse as it should, everyone would blame the government for letting it collapse. If the government postpones it, people get mad that banks are being helped out. In the end, it’s the people who took out loans they couldn’t afford, banks who lent out money they shouldn’t have loaned out, governments who get involved with economic systems when they shouldn’t have and corporations that should have failed not failing because the government is bailing them out.

      • http://kipwblog.blogspot.com Kip W

        Spreading the blame to the victims is like the “everybody does it” view of politics. By such false equivalency, the guiltiest are let off the hook.

        The animation’s not spectacular, but it carries its message pretty efficiently. I’d quarrel with the decision to show the ‘fine print’ on the contract so quickly, but I guess the assumption is that people will pause the video and check it out.

      • Stephen M. Levinson

        @Kip everyone is guilty. If you make bad decisions and then you have to pay the consequences, you’re not a victim. And everyone was doing it, why do you think the housing bubble collapsed in 08.

      • Jason H

        Stephen-
        It’s good that you’re seeing how broken things are but you can’t just blame people who bought into the marketing hype. What makes people in the US different than Canadians and their stable banking system? Not much but according to you, all Americans caused this problem. That’s silly.

        The only reason all of this happened 80 years after the New Deal was because we deregulated everything and pressured countries like Japan to deregulate their banking system as well. The Japanese asset price bubble of the 1990s can be traced back to deregulation as the origin of that.

        In other words the termination of New Deal era politics is exactly what sent us along the path to where we are today. If you bring back the New Deal and upgrade it so it fits into the modern context you can seriously count on the economy rebounding back to where it was.

        Just remember, the Great Depression started with Balloon Payment Loans and Margin Account Financing today it’s Sub Primes and Financial Derivatives.

        Canadian banks escaped the 2008 crisis because of regulation. Had New Deal policies remained intact, had the government continued its trend of regulating business, you can bet that we would never have been in this mess to begin with.

      • Stephen M. Levinson

        I agree. All of those banks should have been regulated to a much higher degree.

        That said, the government can’t regulate every aspect of the economy. They can regulate corporations but not the economy as a whole. The economy goes through natural cycles and government interference into it such as QE makes things worse. BOA should have gone bankrupt for their poor business practices.

        If you want to buy a house, you should just buy it in full. If you don’t have the money to buy it in full, you shouldn’t be taking a mortgage out on it.

      • http://kipwblog.blogspot.com Kip W

        I just watched the last part of Ken Burns’s “Prohibition.” It looks like at least a good part of the New Deal was ending Prohibition. If only there was some sort of Prohibition we could end now.

  • http://www.spiteyourface.com Tim Drage

    cue 1000 posts of KEEP POLITICS OUT OF MY POLITICAL SATIRE!! and URGH LIBERAL MEDIA

  • http://kaiology.wordpress.com/ Kai

    You are entitled to your view and to share it here, although I would submit the link to animation is tenuous at best. As for the “movement”, I think it is a completely misguided attempt to balance extremism on the right side of the spectrum with extremism of the left.

    • Jason H

      I personally think it’s misguided to treat this movement as a ‘extremism of the left’ when we’re seeing tea party folks and ex military joining the cause.

      Don’t get all your opinions from television.

    • Bruce Wright

      Only in today’s skewed political landscape is “wanting a job” called ‘extreme’.

      One the one hand, people think the President is a Socialist Muslim Kenyan, on the other hand, folks want jobs… Gee, wackos to the right and left!

      I hope the media balances those two views out for me, so that I can measure them equally!

      • Mike

        That’s funny, because I hear idiotic comments from all sides of the political spectrum. So yes, all things are equal!

      • http://www.dailygrail.com/ red pill junkie

        Just so you know, Bruce. I will be using your comment as ‘quote of the day’ for tomorrow’s news briefs at The Daily Grail :)

      • Bruce Wright

        Thanks!

    • tommy

      A cartoon’s link to animation is tenuous… at best?!?!

  • Hank Debs

    Corporate America no longer needs the middle class as workers because there are essentially no more American factories. It also doesn’t need the middle class as customers because it is now selling its foreign made goods to thriving overseas markets, who have plenty of money. The American middle class has been effectively aced out. It just didn’t seem to know it until about ten days ago. Call it whatever you will, depriving citizens of a democracy the right to assemble and use bullhorns to voice dissent is fascism. The only thing wrong with that cartoon is that “piggies” is way too nice a visual anthropomorphism.

    • butter

      “thriving overseas markets”- you mean in the “blossoming” middle class in China and India that still have a hole in the ground as their bathroom.

      Where is the proof of these thriving markets?

      Stop listening to Goldman Sachs.

  • http://www.michaelspornanimation.com/splog/ Michael Sporn

    Congratulations, Candy & Rick. You’ve finally gotten a nice bit of exposure. Also thanks to Amid for spreading the word. The piece is nice, and it’s good to see something in animation with a social conscience again. They’re few and far between these days. Everything has to mindless and/or stupid.

  • Bill Perkins

    Hi Amid. Been awhile since we’ve talked or seen one another. I’m the guy who keeps all issues of “Animation Blast” in a fireproof safe. Good on you for going out and protesting, saw today where there is one being set up here in Ottawa. Interesting comment string you got in response to this this posting. My only concern is lack of media coverage, the big boys certainly have power over what we see and don’t see. I’m with Bruce Wright. Time to march on the Corporate News Media.

  • http://www.jeff-pert.com Jeff P

    What Bruce W said.

    And for folks who don’t get it, go here:
    http://www.cnn.com/2011/10/05/opinion/rushkoff-occupy-wall-street/index.html?hpt=op_t1

  • http://www.frankpanucci.com Frank Panucci

    If anyone really wants to know what’s being protested, it’s the effects of “financialization” and it’s explained – perfectly – at this link:

    http://market-ticker.org/akcs-www?post=195434

    An excerpt can’t do justice to this cogent, comprehensive article.

    • Cord

      Wow. Awesome article. It both educated and depressed me. I recommend it to everyone.

  • Brad Constantine

    Just remember, folks, WE still have 99 percent of the vote!

    • Dr. Ivo Robotnik

      Until there are no reasonable candidates to vote for, like, oh, say, 2012.