Another “Occupy” movement has begun in a state called Iowa—one of the fifty or so “United States of America,” which are more or less united (depending upon the party affiliation of the person you ask).
Called Occupy Iowa 2016, the movement began after the 1 February, 2016 Iowa Caucus, which is something like a cactus with political undertones, that essentially elects the next U.S. president each election cycle. After the caucus, which kicked out of the presidential race several endearing candidates from both parties, members of the other 49 states thronged to Iowa to protest, with signs reading “We are the 49÷50=98%.”1
Other signs expressed similar sentiments:
- You can’t grow caucus on the prairie.
- Paying back Alaska, because I-really-owa.
- I lost my job and dig this party.
According to its founder, Clem Quincy (who is named after John Quincy Adams), the Occupy Iowa 2016 movement seeks to “re-democratize [sic] the primary process which selects the Democratic and Republican party nominees for the presidential elections.” Quincy stated that, ever since he moved from Iowa to Kansas, he “realized [his] vote doesn’t really count in the primaries, no matter which party [he] join[s].” No longer an Iowan (Iowanese? Iowar?) himself, he now says he feels “utter resentment” toward the Iowa caucus process. “I don’t get to vote for Martin O’Malley, or Jeb Bush, or Other, all of whom were originally in the 2016 presidential race. I’m stuck with the top two or three guys chosen in Iowa, and that really [bothers me].”
Iowans, however, remain unfazed. To quote one Iowan,
Fore, Score, and Seven Holes ago, our forefathers fought for the right to decide the fate of the entire nation by means of this state’s caucus process. If you don’t want to move to Iowa, it’s your own fault. Besides, we’re very friendly folk and we work well with others.
Occupy Iowa protesters have been camping out in pumpkin patches (which run rampant in Iowa) with bags of leftover Halloween candy, some even wearing last year’s Halloween costumes.2 Others wear paper bags over their heads, a sign that they have recently been grocery shopping.
While mostly composed of college students, who have no need for income, and laid-off workers, who have no jobs anyway, some Iowese parents with small children have joined the Occupy Iowa movement as well—the Iowa caucus typically starts “right around bedtime,” according to Rita Smith, mother of four.
Police, it seems, have not yet taken notice of the movement, but may be summoned soon as farmers prepare to plough their fields for the annual squash planting. Otherwise, farmers may just try to get some below-minimum-wage labour out of it.
- Some Puerto Ricans held signs quoting 99%, but their math was off, since 50÷51 is still only 98.04%. ↩
- Apparently Barack Obama was a popular Halloween costume, along with characters from the Disney movie Really Really Cold, or whatever it was called. However, participants wearing Disney costumes quickly realised they weren’t suited for the really really cold February weather in Iowa. ↩