The Knuckle Dragging Arm of the GOP

"...Tea Party patriots aren’t good at making connections. In all honesty, though elitists like me are hesitant to say so, they’re not the cream of the crop, not the sharpest tools in Uncle Sam’s toolbox. When the 2 million-year-old skull of a new hominid, Australopithecus sediba, was pictured in the New York Times and sediba was described as a creature with “a human-like face but a tiny brain,” I thought “homo teaparticus” and was ashamed of myself — until I saw the head shots of sediba’s lineal descendants, eight “Hutaree” militiamen from Michigan recently arrested for plotting to kill policemen. Unfortunately, the Hutaree conspirators appear to be precisely the kind of knuckle-dragging, genetically-challenged primates-in-pants that the average elitist imagines at the right end of the political spectrum. And no Tea Party leader rushed forward to distance his movement from these primitive 'Christian warriors'..."

Hal Crowther
author of Gather at the River


Strong Backs & Weak Minds...The Value of...

"...Once you devalue intellect and education, you clear the way for every kind of charlatan. A politicized rabble of TV weathercasters, with no research or academic credentials to back them up, now defies all climate science by denying global warming, and of course the Tea Party laps it up. Whatever it doesn’t understand, it rejects. One researcher asked a right-wing sample group whether the Bush tax cuts had reduced the deficit. Predictably, most thought they had. Presented with incontrovertible evidence that they were wrong, they were polled a second time. They held to their original error by an even larger margin. What seems to animate this movement even more than xenophobia, the raw material of racism, is “epistemophobia”—-fear of knowledge—-the raw material of superstition and barbarism. You may not be living in the Dark Ages, but you can always make your own. Rather than a tea cup, the symbol of this Party ought to be the ostrich, with its head buried in the sand. In 1825, the year before he died, a discouraged Thomas Jefferson wrote that he felt lost in a nation contaminated by business, banking, religious revivalism, “monkish ignorance” and anti-intellectualism. If Tom could see us now..."

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