Bain Capital made Mitt Romney a much wealthier man than he already was as the heir to Daddy's fortune. But was it good for America? Hardly. Is this the American Dream? Perhaps only for the already wealthy Romney.
Perhaps the greatest gift that Occupy Wall Street and the other movements of 2011 have given us is a sharpening of our perceptions -- and our conflicts. One thing couldn't be clearer: compassion is our new currency.
When the House Republicans blew up a bipartisan Senate plan to continue unemployment insurance and the payroll tax cut for two months, they made it clear that they were willing to use the 99 percent as bargaining chips in their fight to protect the top 1 percent.
Today's Harvard students, protesting on behalf of the 99 percent, are hardly an anomaly, but are part of a proud tradition of affluent Americans -- those who inherited or worked for their fortunes -- finding common cause with the poor, the working class, and progressive movements.
Republicans' refusal to act on anything other than tax cuts for the rich is an economic and moral failure of leadership -- it flies in the face of the fact that countless American families, a great cross-section of the 99 percent, are in utter crisis.
Here's an American fact: the 99 percent are far too remote from our wars of choice and those who fight them. To reclaim the latter, we must end the former. And that's a war of necessity that has to be fought -- and won.
Who will own this young century of ours? While there is little uncertainty to China's approach, America's path is the unknown. Will it retreat and rebuild the American nation, or will it allow its 1% to continue its universal project paid for by a mortgage on the future of the 99%?