Tea Party thrives off Ignorance

RE: Passion trumps reason in American midterm elections, Nov.3

Troublingly, the election of Barack Obama in 2008 reinvigorated the conservative base, lulled into complacency with the re-election of George W. Bush. Obama’s message, even if it was vague, of hope in 2008 has been met with hate, in 2010.

Had McCain won in 2008, conservatism in America would have likely proven itself to be an abject failure. Obama’s election granted a reprieve to conservatism and allowed its adherents to remobilize.

The “grassroots” movement of the Tea Party is an example of this, even when it is anything but a coldly calculated, bought-and-paid for campaign, thanks to the coffers of corporations, perversely exerting their newly affirmed electoral rights as persons after the Supreme Court repeal on such involvement. A party antithetical to actual governance, fomenting the strength of that comes from resolute ignorance, has taken control of the House of Representatives.

The double-bind of the political centre and left is thus: how to counteract a thirty-year narrative of conservatism naturalized in print, television, and now digital media, to prove conservatism’s inability to actually represent people and legislate justly to address concerns of the future, while articulating an alternative that does not merely supplant the status quo, but fundamentally shifts the paradigm of political engagement.
—T.A. Pattinson

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