Teabagging For…?

by Brien Jackson

At my most cynical, I don’t think I ever would have guessed that conservatives approach to opposition would basically ape the left’s from 2002-2004…only even more absurd. The latest incarnation is a series of “tea party” tax protests, or something, scheduled for Wednesday (Tax Day), which have been widely promoted in the wingnut blogosphere and on Fox News, and more or less mocked everywhere else. Personally, I just can’t figure out what the hell we’re supposed to be “teabagging” for.

It was fairly common to hear liberals wonder where their anti-war protests weren’t more effective in the run-up to the Iraq war, and my first answer would be that the protests simply weren’t focused/directed enough. Without any sort of clear plan of action, or any dynamic leaders to the movement, the events basically became an occassion for a lot of people to show up with signs promoting any number of left-of-center causes, which takes away from any potential to focus in on, well, anything. Similarly, as best I can tell, there’s just no focus to this teabagging. I guess people are upset about taxes? Bailouts? Spending? Fiat money? Unless the ghost of Ronald Reagan shows up on the steps of the IRS building to give a rousing oratorical set, there’s just no story driver.

To be blunt, this is nothing more than a cathartic temper tantrum, just like liberal protests were. President Obama is extremely popular, with (non-Rasmussen) favorability ratings still hovering in the 65% range, give or take. Of course, in a country the size of the US, 25% can represents a large number of people in its own right, so it isn’t that hard to get a few thousand people out to protest any given thing. Heck, these sorts of things are usually fun. But ultimately they’re totally futile, especially when your message is a transparently nonsense.

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