The Revolution Will Be Televised – The Koch Brothers, The Tea Party, and a Future America

By W.D. Noble

Sometimes, I wish I didn’t care so much.

I’ve wondered if I’d be content to be a drooling, Springer-watching moron with no more ambition than a single wide with tarps and old tires on the roof and a job at the 7/11. I could rant about wanting English to be our ‘ofecal’ language; I could thank Fox News for keeping us ‘infromed’. Life would be simple. Glenn Beck would be my hero; everything would be black and white, and I’d be happy that the Tea Party was there to stick up for my ‘rights’.

When asked about them, I could say with a straight face (as some have, at those rallies), that “there must be rights I don’t know about.”

Unfortunately, I was born with a brain, and my parents insisted I learn to use it – which brings me to yesterday’s election.

Y’see, while Thinking America is reeling from yesterday’s election results and the media are weighing-in on the statistics, trying to parse reality out of the chaos, one thing seems to be overlooked – all the money spent by the Koch Brothers and their ultraRight minions has had a telling effect. Mama Grizzly herself (y’know – the gal who shoots wolves from a helicopter) stumped for the winner of the Biggest Upset, in the state of Delaware, and the votes are in.

The Tea Party Revolution has arrived.

The dumbing-down of America has found its voice. Whether we like it or not, the Tea Party , misspelled placards and wingnut theories aside, is now a part of the Republican landscape, just as much as the Fundies who began the process of co-opting the whole thing back in ’01. It’s a perfect storm of Angry Mouth-Breathing White Folks Who Can’t Spell, and plenty of money. Plenty, plenty of money.

Voters who call themselves ‘conservatives’ are increasingly unwilling to settle – the O’Donnell/Castle fight should be ample proof of that. Across the country, we’re seeing America’s New Polarization line up not along party lines, but along ideological constructs.

Has the Tea Party weakened the Republicans? I wouldn’t bet on it. The iron pipe about which I’ve often written? It just came out of the collective back-pocket of the ultraRight, and they’re getting ready to use it. Count on all that Koch money being spent on massive campaigns, aimed squarely not at thinking Americans, but at Joe and Josephine Sixpack. Don’t make any mistake – the Tea Party is bought-and-paid-for; it’s the completely funded political arm of big business in America, and they’re mad as hell – as well as fearful – that continued Democratic/Progressive control of the House and Senate will mean more controls and no more free-ride at the taxpayer’s expense.

These are the people who will make decisions based not on reason, but on emotion. Fear and hate (along with an abysmal lack of education) drives these people – and you can also count on these advertising campaigns not to extol the virtues of their chosen candidates, but the perceived vices of their opponents.

I’ll say it again – we dismiss these people at our peril.

I have to shake my head – because these are the people who have the most to lose. Most of them work for minimum-wage or nearabouts; they live paycheck-to-paycheck; their children have no chance at an education, unless one of them literally wins one of those education-lotteries which are becoming so popular, or manage to overcome an underfunded public-school education and get a scholarship to a state-run college or university. Like as not, they’ll be sucker-punched into signing up for one of those Federally-sponsored school-loans to attend the University of We’ll-Teach-You-How-To-Cook, Clean, and Fix Cars – and they’ll get out in six months to a year with no useable skills and a $50,000 bill which they can’t bankrupt when they can’t find a job (it’s part of the deal; those Fed-backed school-loans don’t qualify for bankruptcy).

(Right now, these for-profit schools are raking in big bucks and delivering no education – and student-loan debt now exceeds credit-card debt in America, making it the next big bubble-in-the-making – but that’s another story, indeed.)

Never have a group of people voted so consistently against their own self-interests.

While Hannity and Beck are spouting the old chestnut, “No-poor-person-ever-gave-me-a-job”, the people they’re protecting by way of demanding Bush’s tax cuts be left in place are betting against us – taking that windfall and sending it to overseas banks or other static investments which have sweet-squat-all to do with creating jobs. A poor person may never have given either of those bloviating morons a job – but it’s a lead-pipe-cinch that the wealthiest people in America aren’t going to do so any time soon, either.

Meanwhile, back to the Koch Brothers.

They’ve shoveled money into everything from the fight against environmental legislation to outfits like the Cato Institute, which favors eliminating most governmental control over business and reducing taxes for everything – except the military, which is, of course, good for business. Peeling back the layers of that rotten onion reveals a couple of guys with no interests past their own. To them, the Tea Party is just a means to the ultimate end – more money, for them.

Connect the dots, and you have a couple of puppet masters, along with others like them who are pouring money into candidates which have been bought, paid-for, and packaged to sell to a semiliterate group of voters who can be easily swayed, plied, and purchased.

What’s the solution?

Each one of us – and I’m assuming you’re one of ‘us’ and not ‘them’, if you’ve read this far – are going to have to go out there this fall and vote a straight Democratic ticket. I hate saying that, because I pride myself on a great deal of independence, especially when it comes to my political philosophy.

Sadly, though, we are past those luxuries.

We’re going to have to own up to the fact that there are greater things at stake here. The Tea Partiers have a platform which, when we boil it down, would remove the gains of the 20th century. Some of them (like Sharron Angle and Michelle Bachmann) would take us back to the 18th century by way of applying their narrow religious worldview to legislation.

(Bachmann has stated that her agenda would be to bring lawsuit after lawsuit, tying up and eventually shutting down the Federal government, along with calling for the impeachment of Obama, should the Republicans win the House and Senate – but that, too, is another story entirely).

Nope – we’re going to have to accept the fact that America is polarized along party lines, and that one of the major parties doesn’t bear any resemblance to the party of Lincoln, Eisenhower, or even Nixon. It’s mutated into a particularly vicious supporter of gangster-oligarchy, run by a group of big business puppet-masters who are pulling the strings on a gaggle of Christian extremists and anti-government, semiliterate Hooterville-dwelling morons.

This is it, folks. It’s do or die come November. Don’t say you weren’t warned.

The revolution will be televised.


About astranavigo

Astra is one of the clever monkeys occupying space on the Third Planet From The Sun. While it was an early wish of Astra's to be one of the first to go to Proxima Centauri, he knows this is not to be; instead, you can find him here (some of the time) using simple tools to create communication. Holding up a mirror and saying 'Looky! Mistofer Emperor! Y'ain't wearin' no clothes!" is but one of the services he provides here. Others are subverting prevailing wisdom, peeing in people's Cheerios, trashing on their Imaginary Friends (he does this a lot,) and shifting paradigms without benefit of a clutch. He lives in Portland, Oregon, where he hopes he'll never have to learn the true meaning of some of his dystopian fiction.

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14 Comments on “The Revolution Will Be Televised – The Koch Brothers, The Tea Party, and a Future America”

  1. Idiocracy here we come! It pains me that Hollywood screen writers have become prophets. We’d better use our brains to make sure plants DO grow using Gatorade instead of water.

  2. “We’d better use our brains to make sure plants DO grow using Gatorade instead of water.”

    I know; right?

    I’ve thought of that film about a dozen times if I’ve thought of it once during the whole O’Donnell/Castle fiasco; if you’ve followed the Value Voters Summit being held this weekend, it’s more of a Fundie rally than a political event – we can’t, however, say that we weren’t warned by these people regarding exactly where they stand.

    Today, it’s simply not possible to be an active Republican and not be a Godwhack/nutjob. We’re past the luxury of voting our conscience; we’re also far past the point of asking rhetorical questions like, “What happened to the Republican party?”

    As David Dayen said not long ago, “I’m told by some Dem-leaning pundits that I’m supposed to feel bad that the GOP has gone to crazytown; that this portends unwell for progressive politics. I just don’t really agree. All Christine O’Donnell does is rip off the mask of conservative ideological purity, a mask that had already fallen off and was being stomped on for years. People should stop pining for some golden version of the Republican Party, a conciliatory, collegial team of problem-solvers. They’re not coming back. They haven’t been around for a decade and a half.”

    –W

    .

  3. It’s all kind of weird. While i was growing up, my dad divided Republican and Democratic ideologies in the same way he separated the Daily News from the Daily Times. Republicans were the professional voice, the business,an and autocrat. The Daily Times reflected their views. The Democrats were the blue collar workers and the Daily News were slanted to represent them. He bought both papers, voted independent and often crossed party lines in his vote.

    The Daily News bought out the Daily Times or vice versa. The end result was a homogenized view that included business views but tossed out any professional criteria. The end result of the Republican party is a lot of workers who figure a low paying job is better than no job at all and will vote for whoever they think will insure their paycheck. The Democratic party is confused.

    The Democrats shrink from name calling. They rile at being called eco-terrorists. They snivel at being called nannies (although in truth, most of the nanny laws have been instilled by staunch Republicans)they tremble at being accused of socialism. If they wish to put up a united front, they need to grow some balls and quit being so afraid of the bullies out in the field.

  4. “We’d better use our brains to make sure plants DO grow using Gatorade instead of water.”

    But it’s got electrolytes! It’s what plants crave!

    Cute, it’s like the 21st century equivalent of Orwell’s 2+2=5.

    I suggest we sterilize all idiots as of now. And how do we determine who the idiots are? We ask what they think of Glenn Beck, and if they even so much as hesitate to identify him as the cracker demagogue that he is, it’s settled. Snip-snip.

    Or we could just let go and watch it all go to hell, either way, the problem is going to get ‘solved’ eventualy. And by ‘solved’, I mean, we will no longer need an answer to the human condition, because the question will cease to exist.

    Jolly, jolly…

    Great article W.D.!

  5. “Never have a group of people voted so consistently against their own self-interests.”

    This is what scares me most. And even when documentation is held out to them, these people deny the reality of what they are seeing in favor of continuing in a fantasy that is very much like Jime Jones’ Kool-Aid. Unfortunately this Kool Aid is at the expense of the country itself.

  6. “Never have a group of people voted so consistently against their own self-interests.”

    You’re right thedavid. This is the most frightening thing of all for me right now.

  7. “Unfortunately this Kool Aid is at the expense of the country itself.”

    I heard from a fellow yesterday who honestly believes (and has some statistics to bear it out) that Bush was a better president than either Clinton or Obama.

    I pointed out that statistics are valueless without data which places them in context – for example, his statement that ’employment improved 5+% under Bush” was explainable by the residual ‘Clinton effect’ – and that toward the end of the Bush presidency (late ’05 and beyond), there were significant cracks in the economic plaster – by ’06, it was evident to all but the most enthusiastic Neocons.

    It will be near to impossible to convince enough of these people that Obama is anything other than a “Muslim Socialist who isn’t a citizen” by election day. What remains is for the rest of us to get out and vote in sufficient numbers – and count on the widening fracture within the Republican party – to enable us to finish what’s been started.

    The alternative is a Tea Party congress and a Tea Party White House in ’12.

    –W

  8. “Frighteningly close to happening.”

    Yes, it is. They have the money – tons of it – and the liars spin-doctors to convince Cletus and DaisyMae that their ‘country is in danger’ if they don’t vote for these Tea Party wolverines.

    However, we still have a vote. There are people who’ll tell you that it doesn’t count for much, but it does. Use it.

    -W

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