SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine — Best-selling author and conservative political commentator Michelle Malkin said she gave the now nationwide Occupy Wall Street the benefit of the doubt when it first emerged, but she now feels the demonstrators have gone too far and she’d use force to move them if it was her property they were occupying.
Malkin also questioned Maine’s Republican U.S. Sen. Olympia Snowe, who is due to face a more conservative challenger in the coming 2012 primary, and tore into both presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush.
“They don’t have a permit,” Malkin said, referring to the flagship Occupy New York City encampment. “That’s private property as I understand it. … [The property owners there] should do what any private property owner can do: Hire private security and shove them off the property. That’s what I would do if they came and camped out on my property for two months.”
Malkin, meeting with members of the Maine media Wednesday before delivering a speech at the Maine Heritage Policy Center’s annual Freedom and Opportunity Luncheon at the Marriott in South Portland, said she “listened hard” to what the Occupy demonstrators had to say before forming the opinion the group is a misinformed “endless sleepover party.”
“I wanted to be careful early on not to do to this movement what was done by so many people to the grass-roots tea party movement,” she said. “Which was be dismissive or condescending.”
But, she said she became “profoundly disappointed” in the Occupy group when the demonstrators did not direct their anger more specifically at Obama’s administration instead of “the entrepreneurs” fueling America’s “capitalist system.”
“They’re showing a fundamental historical illiteracy, fiscal illiteracy and civic illiteracy,” she said.
However, she did count them among those she said are disenfranchised with Obama, whose administration she blasted as corrupt Wednesday, following themes from her 2009 book “Culture of Corruption: Obama and His Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks and Cronies.”
She said her talk before the right-leaning Maine Heritage Policy Center would boil down to one key five-word thesis: “See? I told you so.”
“I wrote ‘Culture of Corruption’ two and a half years ago documenting many of the ominous impulses Obama and his Chicago cronies showed,” Malkin said Wednesday. “My warnings went unheeded by so many. Now, there’s a sense of buyer’s remorse. People have been sold a bill of goods, and not only Republicans and conservatives, but the folks of Occupy Wall Street are showing regret.”
Malkin didn’t blast Obama exclusively Wednesday. She also criticized Republican predecessor George W. Bush and questioned Sen. Snowe as well.
She said Bush “presocialized” the country, in part, through his $700 billion Troubled Asset Relief Program, or TARP, which used federal funds to keep major U.S. banks financially afloat.
“It was Bush who bragged about sacrificing free market principles to save the free market,” Malkin said. “It makes you want to jump off a bridge.”
Of Snowe, Malkin said she “wouldn’t rank her among my favorite fiscal conservatives.” The author stopped short of calling for Mainers to vote the veteran senator out of office, though.
“The extent to which the tea party is helping rid the halls of the GOP of entrenched incumbencies is good,” she said in a general sense. “I don’t believe in coronations [in the primaries]. I think every candidate should work to prove they’re the best ones for the job.”