Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Occupy Movement Declares War On West Coast Economy

Shutting down the Port of Oakland wasn't a big enough show of force for the Occupy movement.  Feeling their oats, they've declared their intent to shut down all West Coast ports on Dec. 12.  Their expression of solidarity with Longshoremen is an overstretch, as the Longshoremen's union is now clearly distancing itself from Occupy's call.  The ILWU believes in the rule of law, which requires it to cooperate with the dispute arbitrator's instructions.  Labor and management are perfectly capable of working things out on their own without outside agitators.  Occupy's outreach will only serve to put other potential union supporters on the spot and force them to choose between complying with labor rules or joining Occupy's disruptive actions. 

The Occupy movement lost its focus on financial corruption almost as soon as it first gained notice.  The ports of Oakland, Long Beach, Seattle/Tacoma, and Portland are America's lifeline to the Pacific Rim.  Shutting them causes more than a mild inconvenience.  Occupy is about to do measurable economic harm to independent truck owner-operators, California farmers, and countless businesses that earn a living from Asian trade.  A home-grown insurgency is declaring war on the West Coast's economy.  We will all be poorer if the Occupiers have their way.