Saturday, April 24, 2010

Tea Party Come and Gone

April 15th was supposed to be a big showing of force for the Tea Party Movement. There was supposed to be armed rebellion, brawls with anarchists, liberal subversion, massive media coverage, and the fulfillment of a truly sustainable mass movement... But did any of that happen?

It would seem that this Tea Party really kicked off when the government decided to raise taxes for people making over $250k/year. So was this working class average american movement angry about that and rallying to the rescue of the super rich? Were they being manipulated? Or was it really this super rich fuckers who were out with the misspelled signs?


Perhaps this supposed libertarian movement stepped a little too far outside of the acceptable boundaries. Maybe they got a little too riled up and/or real because Fox News began to pull support. Rupert Murdoch didn't think Fox should be supporting this movement that they essentially gave birth to. Sean Hannity didn't even get to broadcast from a big tea bagging event. It would seem that this "movement" is beginning to fizzle without their loud benefactor. (Of course, you still have politicians trying to out righting each other but that is not new and only recently became a part of Tea Party-ism.)

Whether it is called Tea Party or The Militia Movement or Ron Paul or the state of Arizona, the push rightward continues. Noam Chomsky wrote a pretty startling look at this.

Americans love to hate taxes and why shouldn't we since we get so little back. Maybe if taxes went to serve the people more than the capitalist machine, we could handle paying them and not devolve into some irrational fear that somehow the people with nothing are actually getting more than me.


(Apparently not where The Tea Party likes to pretend they do.)

Bill Maher made a proposition to Tea Party. If they really care about taxes and the deficit, attack military spending.

A lot has been written about how to approach, fight, befriend, win over, or organize the Tea Party. Perhaps if they die off, we won't have to worry about that (or read all the idiotic proposals). You can't win them over. There is no rational argument against irrational claims and fears. Whether they are working class or not, the liberals, progressives, or left radicals aren't going to get them to switch sides. That type of cultural shift takes decades and, while it might be a project worth the energy, this group ain't coming along.

I really hope we stop seeing these liberal/progressive counter-protests which read more like a guide how NOT to oppose Tea Party than anything else. NONE of the counter-demonstrators seem to have ANY signs opposing anything that Tea Party is about. Sure, a lot of Tea Partiers are racist, sexist, homophobic and I see plenty of people protesting racism/sexism/homophobia but then why have a reactionary counter-demo to vent about those things all in relation to something that doesn't stand for those things? It is like a fuckin knee-jerk reaction that liberals/progressives seem to have.
I am not saying all things aren't inter-connected. They are. The left seems to instinctively know this and that is why every demo kinda looks the same. Somewhere, however, I think focus was lost and now every leftist demo just brings out the usual suspects for the usual parade. (Perhaps the popular insurrectionist "totality" crit will bring a new way of approaching this interconnectedness... so long as it doesn't continue to dwell in the privileged ghetto of ignoring race/class/etc.)


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