Participation in our democracy is a good thing
The Tea Party movement and Wall Street protests of late have shown us that some Americans believe we are mishandling our budget, while others see a problem with our rising income inequality, respectively. They are anxious to participate in our democracy, and shouldn't be pitted against one another to determine which protest was more orderly, who had the better message, etc...
Rather, they should be embraced as examples of the power of free speech and the right to assemble, two principles our country was founded on. Pundits like to carve the messages of the respective groups to strengthen their political ideology.
Plenty of examples exist in the main stream media from the right ignoring the signs of tea partiers comparing Obama to Hitler or calling him a socialist, and the left ignoring protesters displaying disrespectful behavior toward police. Agree with them or not, it is quite obvious the overall message of the Tea Party is that the government is too large and we need to manage the national debt.
The Wall St. protestors main message is focusing on the rising income inequality between the 1 percent and 99 percent.
Trying to characterize the protests by looking at the fringe is unfair and dishonest.