Brought to you by the people who occupy wall street. Why will YOU occupy?
OccupyWallSt.org Occupytogether.org somosel99por-ciento.tumblr.com wearethe99percentuk.tumblr.com westandwiththe99percent.tumblr.com
ATTENTION: Documentary filmmaker Bobbi Jo Hart is looking to connect with people who have submitted their stories to We Are the 99 Percent. She would like to bring your stories to life in a new feature documentary film. You can contact her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to know more and explore being interviewed on camera.
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I am a middle-aged man working three part-time jobs that pay anywhere between $11 and $17 an hour. I have three different college degrees to my name but full-time work is still an elusive endeavor. The only reason I have medical insurance is due to my wife. Our medical premiums continue to rise, doubling this past year, as our out of pocket expenses exponentially increase. This while the insurance company cries poor and posts quarter profits in the billions.
Still, I consider myself very lucky to have what I have. I am deeply concerned with what has transpired in this country for the last thirty years. Our country was once known for its commitment of upward mobility and the “American Dream.” That commitment has been called into question as more of us struggle to make ends meet on whatever meager incomes we garner. Many of us are facing a crisis in confidence in many of our personal and professional lives. It has been said that great civilizations die from suicide rather than homicide. What we are experiencing is the hijacking of our political system from the corporate oligarchs that have swayed the judicial and legislative process for decades and have thus created a plutocracy where malfeasance is a common occurrence. Our current economy favors consumption over production; debt over saving; and self-indulgence over altruism. We Americans must insist on complete transparency, clarity and accessibility when it comes to conglomerates dictating policy and procedure. This goes for K-street as well as Wall Street.
The first step in overhauling the mores and values of Wall Street is setting up a system of checks and balances that would make the framers of our constitution proud. All corporate entities that were on the receiving end of the bailouts should be subjected to unilateral fiscal and management audits conducted by reputable & independent firms. These audits would not only track every transaction, settlement, and agreement; it would disseminate where money went and to whom. The mantra of “trust but verify” would echo the halls of all federated entities that have parlayed public monies. However, it would be naive to think that pure unadulterated accountability would ever happen in our current capitalistic paradigm where it’s every man for himself; capitalism without a conscience; and profits before the people. As Lord Action once stated: “Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely.”
The next step towards reform is to bring government back to “We the People” … Not, We the Directorate. Both political parties have contorted and blended themselves into an amalgam of dishonesty and distrust that depend on the deep pockets of big business. Lobbyists have taken away the principle of “one person one vote” and have rigged and exploited the political process to the detriment of the Middle Class. In 2009, over 13,700 registered lobbyists spent well over 3.5 billion dollars to control and manipulate the legislative process. That comes out to 6.5 million dollars for each legislative member. I have learned from OWS that change comes from within, that democracy is not a spectator sport and that we all need to get into the game. I want to believe that we can create a fair and equatable capitalistic environment where everyone can be held to the same standard, no matter how much money they have. We have always taught our children to work hard, be honest, have integrity and they will succeed in life. That is no longer true. The people who succeed lie, cheat, and steal at any cost to advance in life. That’s why I am proud to be part of the 99%. Occupywallstreet.org
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I am 19 years old and I can’t find a job. If I had a penny for every time I heard that….
I was a A student and managed to get into 5 colleges, only to receive no financial help whatsoever even though my dad is a single parent who makes (if were lucky) $20,000 a year after taxes. My dream as to be a horse trainer so I could work with/study the wild horses, so much for that. I have been taking care of my 3 sisters since I was 9 years old when my parents divorced. My mother owes thousands of dollars in child support but ran of to Canada so she doesn’t have to pay. I have 4 infected/impacted wisdom teeth that have needed to be removed since January 2011. I need between $8000 and $10,000 to have it done and the cost of renting a hospital room/equipment goes up every day. I am so tired of being in pain all the time, I truly would sell my soul for a job right now. All my life money has always been scarce but this is just unbelievable and beyond unfair to all the people who are in similar situations! I can’t see a way out and I’m so frustrated and angry with what’s going on in this country.
I am the 99%
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I am 19 years old and married to a hard-working military man. I have NO job, despite dozens and dozens of applications, and have not started college. I am too scared to acquire that much debt and have no guarantee of getting a job in this dying economy. I’ve been thinking of enlisting to regain some sense of self-worth, but even the military has suffered. I fear for my future. I fear for my future children’s place in this world.
I am scared.
I am lost.
I am pissed.
I am the 99%.
Born in this world as it all falls apart.
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I am 19 years old. I graduated from high school with almost a straight A average. I was set to go to college to become a literature teacher. My dreams seemed so real at the time. After my mother found out about my religious beliefs I was forced to leave home. I started college in the fall of 2011 wile living with my cousins. I was working as a waitress making $2.14 an hour. The tips that I made were enough to get me back and forth to work in gas. Until my car gave out. I had to scrap it for money. My financial aid at the college ran into a snag that I still do not understand. No one would help me. I was told to “check my account online” that was all the advice they could give me. I had no way back and forth to college anymore. I am now living with my cousins and my aunt with no car, not money, and no school. No one in the house has a job. My cousin has been denied disability after working as a welder for years. He can not even kneel to put his knees on the floor. We live off of food stamps and pawning any valuables that we have. But the valuables are running out. Food stamps can not [ay for Christmas dinner plus food for the rest of the days of the month. My family went 4 days without eating last month because we were determined to have an okay Christmas dinner. I have a job interview at McDonald’s on the 30th where I will be making min wage and getting paid every 2 weeks. My cousins will take me back and forth to work. $20 a day for me in gas. I will be the only one working in a house of 5. I owe the college $800.
I am the 99%….
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I am 20. I earned a culinary degree. I had to move back home with my parents. I have thousands in student loan debt. I make and have never made more than 9.50/hr. I vow never to have children, for i fear for their future because I fear for my own. I feel this life is almost not worth living….yet I live for change. I am the 99%.
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My mom was diagnosed with kidney disease 2 years ago. Fortunately she’s able to get dialysis treatment 3 times a week because of my dad’s insurance. Many other people aren’t as fortunate. They are the 99%. I am the 99%.
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I am a high school student. In the past two years my dad has worked in three different places, not to mention he spent 4 months out of work. Now, my dad’s gone. He screwed us over. My mom now has $30000 in debt. She has two jobs, yet still can’t manage to hold the house now. We’re at a point where I , the 9th grader, has to look for a job. We need help.
We are the 99%.
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I have a friend who as problems at home. His parents are currently split up, His mom has an abusive boyfriend. So he moved to his dad’s house, who worked for the MTA, and was recently laid off. His house is under foreclosure. So he joins after-school programs to avoid going home… he is the 99%.
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I work full time and so does my husband. We can’t afford our mortgage even though we both have decent jobs. We are about to lose our house. We are the 99%
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I am 19 years old, I’ve lived in poverty my entire life. My mother has worked the same job at $11/hr for 13 years to support me, my brother and my father. With how unstable welfare has been, my diabetic brother was unable to get the insulin he needs in order to survive.
I currently attend a small university as an art major, I’ll be $24,000 in debt by the time I graduate and I don’t even know if there are jobs for me. With education prices steadily rising, Graduate school might be nothing more than a dream for me.
The people in congress who decide how much we get have no idea what it’s like to live like us. They have never watched their children struggle and starve or went to a free medical center, to receive low quality help for a high quality situation or disease, because they couldn’t afford to go anywhere else.
They’ve never had to spend a weekend without electricity.
They’ve never had to spend 3 months without running water.
They’ve never gone days eating crackers because they don’t have enough money for food and their foodstamps got cut.
I hope for change.
I hope for equality.
I am the 99%.
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I’m 26 years old. I’m a journalist, writer and editor. I’m unemployed and live with my parents. I’ve been unemployed since graduating from school 2 1/2 years ago with no debt. I’ve been looking for a job in my field, but have only gotten unpaid internships that don’t lead to a job with the company, and the only jobs I’ve gotten are at places that can’t pay anyone, even the people at the top.
I’ve put out high-quality pieces and I’m a self-starter with a deep knowledge of and passion for the subjects I work on. I always have ideas for projects and I welcome teamwork to realize them. All of these things, apparently, are what employers are looking for. I’ve done everything right, and no one will hire me.
I’m not looking for fame, glory or fortune. I’m looking for a job. Is that too much to ask?
I am the 99%
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I am at a public university studying to be a preschool teacher. When I graduate, I’ll have $40,000 in student loans to pay back. I’ll be making a maximum of $25,000 a year. I already owe over $40,000 in medical debt. I’m not sure I’ll ever be debt free. Right now I’m on my dad’s insurance, but when I turn 26, I have no idea what I’ll do. I’m scared and anxious for my future. I am the 99%
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