The Tea Party Exposed
There is no way to do justice to Matt Taibbi’s Rolling Stone piece on the Tea Party in a blog post. So let me post a couple of excerpts and urge you to go read it for yourself.
On the demographic composition of the Tea Party:
Scanning the thousands of hopped-up faces in the crowd, I am immediately struck by two things. One is that there isn’t a single black person here. The other is the truly awesome quantity of medical hardware: Seemingly every third person in the place is sucking oxygen from a tank or propping their giant atrophied glutes on motorized wheelchair-scooters.
On their dependence on government spending:
At the voter level, the Tea Party is a movement that purports to be furious about government spending — only the reality is that the vast majority of its members are former Bush supporters who yawned through two terms of record deficits and spent the past two electoral cycles frothing not about spending but about John Kerry’s medals and Barack Obama’s Sixties associations. The average Tea Partier is sincerely against government spending — with the exception of the money spent on them.
And on their financiers:
It’s a mistake to cast the Tea Party as anything like a unified, cohesive movement — which makes them easy prey for the very people they should be aiming their pitchforks at. A loose definition of the Tea Party might be millions of pissed-off white people sent chasing after Mexicans on Medicaid by the handful of banks and investment firms who advertise on Fox and CNBC.
It’s a long piece but every paragraph has gems like the above. It points to the value of real reporting. Taibbi has talked to hundreds of Tea Partiers and produced the kind of thorough portrait one rarely sees any more.Click here for reuse options!
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