Republican cynicism and misdirection during a recession garnered Republican election victories and, thus, they have pushed their sweeping agenda involving voter ID, conceal and carry, and ending collective bargaining...along with more corporate tax cuts, of course. (All the while, mind you, Republicans are simultaneously accusing the Democrats of changing the country for the worse, being anti-American, and of having their own sweeping agenda. Because they tried to get all citizens health care? Because they want to invest in the nation's infrastructure?)
Public workers and concerned citizens all over the country rallied and made their voices heard regarding this outrageous power-grab. Some might even consider Madison, Wisconsin the initial spark of this, now national, activism. Primarily agitated to life in Wisconsin due to the budgetary shenanigans and anti-labor policies of Scott Walker.
From this movement Occupy Wall Street is born. A decades-overdue opposition to neoliberal, laissez faire, deregulated, unbridled capitalism, haunting us since the Reagan administration. These policies explain much of our inequality and the primary reason people have started The Occupation.