We begin tonight with what has become by any measure a pretty massive protest movement. While it goes by the official name ‘Occupy Wall Street,’ it has spread steadily and far beyond Wall Street, and it could well turn out to be the protest of this current era. ---Brian Williams on Oct. 5, 2011 gushing with extreme hype over OWS.
Despite all the friendly hype given to the Occupy Wall Street protests by much of the mainstream media, OWS is now in its death throes according to this Reuters report by Chris Francescani. He also notes that as OWS is about to be taken off life support, the much maligned Tea Party movement is doing quite well by contrast:
More than eight months after Occupy Wall Street burst onto the global stage, decrying income inequality and coining the phrase "We are the 99 percent," the movement's survival and continued relevance is far from assured.
Donations to the flagship New York chapter have slowed to a trickle. Polls show that public support is rapidly waning. Media attention has dropped precipitously.
Bursts of violence, threats of municipal chaos and two alleged domestic terror plots have put Occupy on a recurring collision course with law enforcement.
Even its social media popularity, a key indicator of the strength of a youthful movement, has fizzled since its zenith last fall.
And as OWS begins to fade into Coffee Party obscurity, the Tea Party continues to remain a political force despite having been written off in the past by much of the MSM:
"Most of the social scientists who are at all like me - unsentimental leftists - ... think this movement [OWS] is over," said Harvard University professor Theda Skocpol, a liberal academic who wrote a book on the Tea Party.
..."Eight months in, the Tea Party were beginning to impact primary elections, and by the second year were having a tremendous impact," Skocpol said. "They were, if not electing, then at least changing the kind of candidates that were being elected.
"But Occupy got bogged down in tent cities. In social movement literature we'd argue that there was a failure to engage in tactical innovation at a crucial time." Certainly the movement shows few signs of creating a summer of discontent in American cities this year.
Read MRC's A Tale of Two Protests by Geoffrey Dickens for details on the contrasting media coverage given to the two movements:
In the media's coverage of the Wall Street occupiers and Tea Partiers, a clear tale of two different protests is seen. One that grew out of concern for out-of-control government spending was initially ignored and treated to catcalls of racism and thuggery by ABC, CBS and NBC. The other, a leftist movement screaming for an even more expansive government, that actually resulted in hundreds of arrests, was greeted by the Big Three networks with a tidal wave of coverage full of friendly talking heads.
And OWS is now on its deathbed despite all the TLC given to it by Brian Williams and his media cohorts.