Thursday, April 15, 2010

Tea Party Tempest

ALTHOUGH I ENJOY ridiculing the Tea Party halfwits as much as the next sentient being, let's be clear that the movement as a whole is no joke. 5,000 of them showed up in Boston to see their patron saint of cluelessness, Sarah Palin, regurgitate the same old talking points. Palin like Glenn Beck is dangerous only because people take what she has to say seriously -- despite or who knows anymore maybe because of her disturbing propensity to make things up as she goes along.

In Washington today, attention junkie Michele Bachmann went for the jugular, using rhetoric loaded with code words to make her point: "We're on to this gangster government. I say it's time for these little piggies to go home ... We need you to take out some of these bad guys." Would it surprise anyone who's read about these meetings to discover that Tea Party loons could be heard chanting, "There's a communist in the White House!" Or that a "fair tax" type would be advocating, "We have got to take the country back by taking back the money they take from us" -- not bothering to explain who would be left to pay for a military budget that incredibly, obscenely is more than every other nation on the planet combined. After all, it takes a lot of tax revenue to win hearts and minds. But sometimes we do much more harm than good in places like Iraq, now seven years after the invasion. And you can make a strong case that we've doing a lot more harm than good lately to the people we're supposed to be helping in Afghanistan, to the point where you can't help but think it's high time for the U.S. to get the hell out of both countries. But the Tea Party loudmouths selectively fixate their outrage elsewhere. As an AP story about the rallies put it:
"Lost in the rhetoric was that taxes have gone down under Obama. Congress has cut individuals' federal taxes for this year by about $173 billion, leaving Americans with a lighter load despite nearly $29 billion in increases by states. Obama plans to increase taxes on the wealthy to help pay for his health care overhaul and other programs."
But then again, logic, reality and reason are not the strong suits of the simpletons gathered under the Tea Party banner. Facts are not likely to get in the way any time soon where the Tea Party is concerned. Republicans now own whatever ugliness comes out of it when all the heated rhetoric brews out of control and boils over into violence. Because it's a matter of when, not if...


No comments: