Anyone who wants to know what the Occupy Wall Street protests are all about need only look at the way Bank of America does business. It comes down to this: These guys are some of the very biggest assholes on Earth. They lie, cheat and steal as reflexively as addicts, they laugh at people who are suffering and don’t have money, they pay themselves huge salaries with money stolen from old people and taxpayers – and on top of it all, they completely suck at banking. And yet the state won’t let them go out of business, no matter how much they deserve it, and it won’t slap them in jail, no matter what crimes they commit. That makes them not bankers or capitalists, but a class of person that was never supposed to exist in America: royalty.
Self-appointed royalty, it’s true – but just as dumb and inbred as the real thing, and every bit as expensive to support. Like all royals, they reached their position in society by being relentlessly dedicated to the cause of Bigness, Unaccountability and the Worthlessness of Others. And just like royals, they spend most of their lives getting deeper in debt, and laughing every year when our taxes go to covering their whist markers. Two and a half centuries after we kicked out the British, it’s really come to this?"
The World in Brooklyn: Gentrification, Immigration, and Ethnic Politics in a Global City, is a collection of scholarly papers which analyze demographic, social, political, and economic trends that are occurring in Brooklyn. Brooklyn, as the context, reflects global forces while also contributing to them. The idea for this volume developed as the editors discovered a group of scholars from different disciplines and various universities studying Brooklyn. Brooklyn has always been legendary and has more recently regained its stature as a much sought after place to live, work and have fun. Popular folklore has it that most U.S. residents trace their family origins to Brooklyn. It is presently referred to as one of the “hippest” places in New York. Thus, this book is a collection of demographic, ethnographic, and comparative studies which focus on urban dynamics in Brooklyn. The chapters investigate issues of social class, urban development, immigration, race, ethnicity and politics within the context of Brooklyn.
As a whole, this book considers both theoretical and practical urban issues. In most cases the scholarly perspective is on everyday life. With this in mind there are also social justice concerns. Issues of social segregation and attendant homogenization are brought to light. Moreover, social class and race advantages or disadvantages, as part of urban processes, are underscored through critiques of local policy decisions throughout the chapters. A common thread is the assertion by contributors that planning the future of Brooklyn needs to include multi-ethnic, racial, and economic groups, those very residents who make-up Brooklyn.