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'Occupy Wall Street' shocks Western economic system

By Xu Yuanchao (China Economic Net)

16:49, October 25, 2011

Edited and translated by People's Daily Online

The "Occupy Wall Street" protest movement that started in New York City has continued to spread. Similar demonstration movements have successively taken place in major cities of some advanced Western countries.

U.S. President Barack Obama said when making a positive response to the "Occupy Wall Street" movement that American people have suffered the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, and various sectors and regions across the country suffered great loss. However, irresponsible practices still continue in the financial sector. These protests had expressed the frustrations of the American people toward the financial system. White House Spokesman Jim Carney said that the Obama administration inherited an awful mess that was partly created by Wall Street.

In light of current trends, this leaderless protest movement may turn into a "protracted war." When Obama became the president of the United States, the country was suffering from the most severe economic recession since the Great Depression, and the unemployment level at the time was "catastrophic."

He immediately launched a financial reform and took other means to stop the bleeding of U.S. financial institutions and to avoid another financial crisis. However, the country’s economy has remained sluggish despite two stimulus packages. Obama introduced a 447-billion-U.S.-dollar jobs bill and repeatedly called on Congress to pass the bill immediately. As the bill requires tax increases for wealthier Americans and corporations, the Republican-controlled Senate voted down the bill on Sept. 12.

"Most mainstream economists said that this was just a problem of finance. This is not the case. It reflects a much deeper, more fundamental problem in the capitalist system," said Chris Harman, a Marxist economist and former editor of the British-based International Socialism magazine. The "Occupy Wall Street" movement will encourage people to reflect on the Western economic and financial systems, and is likely to exert a profound impact on the future international political landscape.

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