Interviews

Occupy protester becomes business owner

ActionBioMed founder Tracy Postert on goal of OWS movement

 

This is a rush transcript from "Your World," May 14, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

TRACY POSTERT, OWNER, ACTIONBIOMED.COM: People were telling me, get a job -- and so I said, OK, I will -- and asked me if I would consider a job on Wall Street, and I said yes.

CAVUTO: Do you like the job?

POSTERT: I do. I really like it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CAVUTO: I think we got thousands of e-mails on this woman.

She is back. A few months later, the Occupier-turned-Wall-Street- employee set to occupy a new business, her own.

Tracy Postert joins us right now.

Tracy, good to have you back. Congratulations.

POSTERT: Thanks for having me.

CAVUTO: Why are you off on your own now?

POSTERT: Well, I kind of started off on my own. I’m not on my own. I’m just following my own path.

CAVUTO: So you were hired by a Wall Street firm...

POSTERT: Yes.

CAVUTO: ... Tom Belesis’s firm, right?

(CROSSTALK)

POSTERT: Yes, John Thomas Financial.

CAVUTO: Right.

You didn’t stick around there very long.

POSTERT: No, I didn’t, just five months. But I was really glad for the opportunity, and I was eager to work for them and eager to check it out.

CAVUTO: Now, how did a lot of your fellow Occupiers feel at the time? Because a lot of them, that was the rap against them. Oh, you love to protest about the lack of jobs, but you’re not signing up to try to apply for one.

POSTERT: Well, they were a little bit suspicious.

They questioned me, are you a traitor, like they say, et cetera, but...

CAVUTO: What did you say?

POSTERT: I said no, that I just needed a job just like everyone else.

And, you know, this past few months, I have continued to work for them, and to volunteer on the weekends serving food, and, you know...

(CROSSTALK)

CAVUTO: So you still believe in their cause.

POSTERT: Most of what they say I still believe really in.

CAVUTO: What is their cause?

(LAUGHTER)

POSTERT: I am not a spokesperson for Occupy Wall Street.

CAVUTO: I understand.

POSTERT: But they basically think that the rules are unfair in our society right now, that the rules could be better for the people that don’t have as much money, and that the top 1 percent have too much of a control over sort of the financial runnings of our society, that not enough of the money is getting to the lower classes.

CAVUTO: Well, you are on the way to the top 1 percent.

POSTERT: We will see. But even I don’t make a lot of money out of my latest venture...

CAVUTO: Understood.

POSTERT: ... I will still be doing what I like to do.

What I really enjoy doing is biomedical research and activism. And so while I was at John Thomas, I got the idea for a company that I could create and that -- where I could do biomedical research and activism at the same time.

CAVUTO: But you could not leave that firm fast enough, right?

POSTERT: They are fine. Those guys are great.

CAVUTO: They are fine. OK.

POSTERT: I like them.

CAVUTO: But you summed up a couple of clear goals of the Occupiers better than I have heard any of them say on this very show.

POSTERT: OK.

CAVUTO: Because they are all over the map.

And I think they are just bitching universally. And they might have plenty of grounds to complain. But they are all over the map, and everyone has glommed on to their cause, unions, environmentalists and everything else.

So, it is crazy diluted. Do you think that’s right?

POSTERT: That is correct. It’s -- the...

(CROSSTALK)

CAVUTO: So if you advised them, what would you say?

POSTERT: There is no one simple -- there is no one simple message from Occupy Wall Street. And I don’t think there should be one simple message. But when asked to summarize what I feel are the most important messages that is what I think.

CAVUTO: Now, I talked to Tom Belesis, the guy who eventually hired you, and other Wall Streeters. The Tabacco brothers were there, other Wall Street -- they actually set up tables and they were like, come here to apply for jobs.

The folks who came to apply for the jobs were not the Occupiers, with an exception of you, but people who were just looking for a job, who were not part of that movement. So their view was that a lot of the Occupiers were not there to bitch about a lack of jobs, or they would have been applying for them. They were there just to bitch.

POSTERT: Mm-hmm.

CAVUTO: What do you think of that?

POSTERT: Well, I think there’s probably an element of truth to that, but there are some people who were there who just sort of wanted to complain.

But on the other hand, I think that the Occupy Wall Streeters, they had an element of truth to what they were doing, too. I do think the rules in this country are not really set up fairly. And I do think that protesting is a way to move towards a more fair society.

CAVUTO: So you think the rich should pay more taxes, right?

POSTERT: I definitely think the rich should pay more taxes

CAVUTO: What about spending?

POSTERT: And I hope to be one of those.

CAVUTO: And you might be there.

(LAUGHTER)

CAVUTO: And What about spending? It’s being repudiated in France and elsewhere, that austerity is not the way to go. Do you agree with that?

(CROSSTALK)

POSTERT: Right. Right, because austerity means basically taking -- giving less and less to the lower classes.

If you give a poor person a job, they spend their whole paycheck. Every week, they spend their whole paycheck. And so, basically, that is the way that I think that we should run our society, focus on the poor, focus on making sure that everyone has good job and good employment opportunities.

CAVUTO: All right, Tracy, thank you very much, Tracy Postert.

Again, your education was in what?

POSTERT: I have a Ph.D. in biomedical science, with a specialization in pharmacology.

CAVUTO: Wow. That’s impressive.

All right, thank you very much, Tracy.

POSTERT: Thank you.

CAVUTO: All right.

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