Fred Shapiro, associate librarian at Yale Law School has declared We are the 99 per cent, the political slogan of the Global Occupy movement, the heavy weight champ of the quotes for 2011. It’s another unavoidable public recognition of the Movement. Last week, Time Magazine declared The Protester 2011’s Person of the Year.
According to the Washington Post:
The original “Yale Book of Quotations” was published in 2006. Since then, Shapiro has released an annual list of the top 10 quotes that would be incorporated into the next edition.
Shapiro picks quotes that are famous, important or revealing of the spirit of the times, not necessarily ones that are the most eloquent or admirable.
The list includes Billionaire Warren Buffet’s recent New York Times confessional quote:
My friends and I have been coddled long enough by a billionaire-friendly Congress.
But we’re the 99 per cent wasn’t just another populist slogan. It was a soundtrack to a global revolution in which ordinary people collectively played the lead role. It was the echo of a collective sigh by a united front of ordinary citizens, students, workers, teachers, the homeless, professionals and activists. And, yes, frustrated progressives of all stripes.
The quote was a war cry. The 99% declared war on corporate greed. On the corrupting influence of money on politics. It rallied against unfettered capitalism, which enables the 1% to maximize and monetize its growing largesse.
[pullquote]“In 2011, protesters didn’t just voice their complaints; they changed the world.” – Time Magazine[/pullquote]
This world is no longer of the 1%, by the 1%, for the %.
Of course there’s a Canadian connection to the beginning of Occupy. In the summer, Vancouver-based anti-consumerist magazine, Adbusters, proposed a peaceful occupation of Wall Street to protest corporate greed. On September 17, Wall Street (OWS) was born in New York, igniting a revolution that spread throughout the world.