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Occupy Wall Street Draws Star Supporters

NEW YORK (MainStreet) -- After having been written off by many when it launched just a few weeks ago, Occupy Wall Street has amassed an increasingly influential set of supporters in recent days, from celebrities to politicians to ice cream makers.

While not all of these supporters are likely to actually march with Occupy Wall Street and its satellite groups day in and day out, their endorsements may just provide the level of credibility and clout needed to have the movement's voices heard by business leaders and legislators inside the beltway.

The Occupy Wall Street movement can count some notable celebrities, politicians and unions as supporters.

Businesses
The movement secured what may be its first corporate supporter -- to use the term loosely -- as the popular ice cream maker Ben & Jerry's released a statement on its Web site this weekend in support of the Wall Street protesters.

"We know that words are relatively easy but we wanted to act quickly to demonstrate our support," the company's board of directors wrote. "We support this call to action and are honored to join you in this call to take back our nation and democracy."

While Ben & Jerry's may be the most vocal of any major business, it is not the only member of the business community to express some level of support. Last week, the head of BlackRock, an investment management corporation, offered a tepid but still surprising defense of the protestors.

"These are not lazy people sitting around looking for something to do," BlackRock Chief Executive Laurence D. Fink said at an event in Toronto, according to Bloomberg. "We have people losing hope and they're going into the street, whether it's justified or not."

Celebrities
No major protest would be complete without the support of a few big celebrities. Of these, the filmmaker Michael Moore has arguably been the most visible, conducting on-camera interviews at the site of the protests in downtown Manhattan and using his Web site and Twitter accounts to broadcast their cause and his unwavering support of it.

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