Nothing mythical about it. Arabs dominated this kind of trade for a long time. But Islam prohibited usury (so did Christianity until the money got too big), so the money backers would be full partners -- they got a chunk of the upside and took the downside loss. Contrast this with banks who get paid back even if you loose your shirt (or, after TARP, even if they loose their shirt).When you think about it, that's the stereotype of the free trader... the mythical trade ship that bounces from port to port buying and selling, taking advantage of relative value differentials. However, that probably isn't a very good form of Capitalism.
Hard to keep track of the numbers you're throwing around, I won't try. Suffice it to say it was a spontaneous, widespread uprising that frightened the establishment enough to crush it.Well now that's an interesting thing. If you start with the idea that there are 600,000+ homeless people already living wherever they can and perfectly happy to hold up a sign if it'll net them some cash, and you add the fact that that since Obama was elected the workforce has stayed more or less static (around 30,000 net jobs gained under Obama IIRC) while the population has gone up by around 8,000,000....well, that's a pretty huge pool of people who don't got nuthin better to do than play Occupy. The fact that they were widespread is a product of our widespread communications systems (e.g. the internet) ... the fact that out of potentially millions of people who could join the protests without particular cost, not even 50,000 actually joined, says that the occupy position was not particularly popular.