Ben Bernanke—yes, that one, the Chairman of the Federal Reserve—just gave what essentially amounts to his name for protesters of America’s economic situation. Happen to know any?
It’s the most passive-support possible for the protest, which he didn’t refer to by name. But it’s still support, or at least what you can bet will definitely be construed as support. Via billionare George Soros’ site, ThinkProgress:
I would just say very generally, I think people are quite unhappy with the state of the economy and what’s happening. They blame, with some justification, the problems in the financial sector for getting us into this mess, and they’re dissatisfied with the policy response here in Washington. And at some level, I can’t blame them.
To briefly editorialize: If only. If #OccupyWallStreet became #OccupyTimGeithnersBackyard, they would represent dissatisfaction with policy response. But they’re going after a private sector held accountable (or not) by a government. And the entire capitalist system. That whole “government” thing in the middle seems to be mostly missing from the protest, in fact, likely because the first person to hold accountable for employing the kind of people who proliferate pro-Wall Street policy (like, say, Tim Geithner) and letting the ones who hold the kind of people who antagonize pro-Wall Street policy resign in frustration (like, say, former FDIC head Sheila Bair) would involve holding accountable the one person whose on-the-line job they need to keep employed: The American President.
Either way, while he may be no Thom Yorke, Ben Bernanke lending some credence to Occupy Wall Street is a pretty big deal. Between Jeff Mangum showing up last night, and this, Zuccotti Park’s newest residents are undoubtedly having a decent week.