Sorry, It’s About Racism

(I apologize for the political kick I’ve had lately. The D.C. crisis has just been too engrossing for me)

They’re so angry.

Watching the shutdown and debt ceiling fight unfold it seems to me that the hardest of the hardcore Tea Party members are getting white hot, more so than usual. One of two things is about to happen, either they’re not going to get what they want or they’re going to drag us into our first-ever default.

The first scenario will empower them. The second will be the end of them.

As I sit and absorb all of the political maneuvering and posturing, one question keeps sticking out in my mind. Why are these people so damn angry? Many of the Tea Party politicians and their supporters are more than willing to bankrupt this country and drive it into default rather than give an inch to Obama and his health care law. Why? How can setting up these exchanges, establishing a penalty, requiring people to buy health insurance, draw so much ire from these people? When you ask them why they’re against it, they don’t spout economic statistics or alternatives to dealing with rising health care costs. In fact, they don’t really provide an answer that remotely resembles anything to do with health insurance.

Instead you hear things like, “We’re losing our country” or “Obama’s destroying our freedoms” or “Obamacare’s a train wreck of a law.” But there’s never any specifics about what they don’t like or what they don’t want to change. They only offer a visceral repulsion.

The irony of their position about Obamacare ruining the economy is that in their ridiculous gambit to eliminate it, they will obliterate the economy with a credit default. It’s like telling a hostage-taker, “put down the gun or we’ll launch a nuclear weapon on the hostage.”
Their position reveals exactly what the problem is — they’d rather destroy the country than to give Obama something he already has. It’s about hatred of the president. Pure and simple.

I’m a southerner. I remember the days of Bill Clinton and all the rage he created among the conservatives down here. But even when he was in the middle of an impeachment process, that anger never equaled close to what I see now.

And being from the South, I can tell you that the only true explanation is racism. Are all of the Tea Party folk racist? No, I’m not saying that. But you can’t take away the racial underpinnings of their movement. Many of the things they rant about (unbalanced budget, rising deficit, the bailouts) started under George W. Bush, something that gets glossed over at the rallies I’ve been to. I’ve had to fight the urge several times to say out loud that the last president with a balanced budget was Bill Clinton. But I was afraid that I’d get tarred and feathered.

I’m sorry, it’s simply racism. White’s don’t like to hear the charge, but it’s true whether they want to believe it or not.

Obama represents the very thing that frightens many white Americans — if minorities can win the presidency, what’s to stop them from controlling everything? When he was reelected, that fear gave way to the answer — nothing can stop them, especially as time wears on. Minorities are on the winning side of statistics. Their numbers grow at a time when white numbers are dropping.

With all of this vehemence that you see from the Tea Party throughout the country and from the southerners, I’ve come to the conclusion that they’re not going to let things go so easily. As minorities begin to play a bigger role in national politics, white anger is only going to grow and intensify.

Watching the latest budget/default battle is unnerving because it shows how far some are willing to go to rail against the oncoming tide. If they don’t win this fight over the debt ceiling, they’ll pick a battle somewhere else with the same endgame—borderline anarchy. The anger will continue to boil until they finally achieve some sort of explosive victory, whatever that might be. They’re looking for anything. Like that Republican congressman said, “We have to get something out of this and I don’t know what that even is.”

Very telling.

It leaves me wondering who’s going to suffer more when they finally get the destruction they want, the angry whites or the rest of us.



Fundamental Rebel


The Right is rising and it’s exactly the way they planned it. Conservatives have mounted campaigns against medical care, global warming and just about anything or anyone who disagrees with their views. They’ll even eat their own, those conservatives who have the nerve to go moderate.

Global warming isn’t real. Why isn’t it real? Well, because combating global warming would require a shift in how we use fossil fuels. Government medical care is evil. Why? Because it might provide an alternative to the broken, ineffective private insurance system that we suffer from now.

Any deviation requires a swift response from action groups funded by covert donors. Americans For Prosperity, the Koch bros, Competitive Enterprise Institute, Donors Trust et al will start filing information requests, issuing lawsuits and funding political opponents of those going off message.

They enlist starving, angry mobs like the Tea Party bullies and make these top-down organizations appear to be driven by volunteers. Ironically the Right uses the exact methods they warn everyone about. They derive black funding from corporations. They craft a seemingly unified, coherent message and install it through “grassroots organizations.” They try to coin phrases with honorable terminology although they mean to do the opposite. See “No Child Left Behind.” They call minority leaders “racist” because those leaders have the gall to defend the rights of their people. All bullshit.

You know, there’s a term that encapsulates all of this organized rancor, rabble rousing and denying science because it interferes with the economy. It’s called fundamentalism. I’ve never heard of anything productive coming from a case of flaming fundamentalism.

What exactly is the end game? I know the capitalists simply want to restore Laissez-faire. The unemployed simply want a job. The upper-middle class wants to stop paying taxes altogether. The religious? I don’t know exactly what their total aim is. Maybe they all want us to start going to church on Wednesdays and Sundays, wear slacks with our shirts tucked in and reverse the First Amendment so they can have Nativity scenes on courthouse steps.

Sorry, you toss all of that into a blender, no good can come of it.