Salon Asks: 'Can We Stop Pretending the Tea Party Is Populist?' Um… No

Over at Salon, that’s the question on editrix Joan Walsh’s lips as she continues to believe the MSM alternate-reality view of the Tea Parties instead of her own lyin’ eyes. Naturally, she begins with that CBS/New York Times poll that’s been getting so much attention today from… well, folks who watch CBS and read the New York Times:

Salon’s Numerologist, David Jarman, nails it today: He combines the widely covered CBS/New York Times poll on the Tea Partiers — no surprise, they’re white, and they think President Obama is doing too much for black people; some surprise, they’re wealthier than the average voter — with a less-covered University of Washington poll that finds they also doubt the hard work, intelligence and trustworthiness of black people.

Gotta love that Joan; like Frank Rich, she’s going to stay convinced that the Tea Party movement — really, truly, way down deep inside, and for real — is all about race. What else could possibly explain the spontaneous combustion of millions of people, who have been roused to anger and action in a way not seen in this country since the late sixties? Minus the riots and bloodshed, of course.

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Race. It has to be race.

I’ve written before that I find it galling when the wealthy, white Pat Buchanan (who by the way spent much of his adult life on government health insurance) lectures me about being “condescending” to the Tea Partiers, as though they’re a grass-roots uprising of the vulnerable against the elites. That’s garbage: They are a well-funded uprising of the elites against the vulnerable. And they’d be nowhere if their mission wasn’t largely supported by the top of corporate America (and the GOP shadow government in waiting).

Well, that certainly sounds sinister enough — a GOP shadow government in waiting! Not to mention a white Pat Buchanan! And an “uprising of the elites” — who knew there were so many hidden elites out there in flyover country, the deceptively wealthy who like to listen to country music, drive really big cars that get crummy gas mileage, tote shotguns, and would vote for Sarah Palin in a heartbeat? This is truly a conspiracy so vast…

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Joan winds up and delivers the moral of the story:

The idea that the Obama administration’s policies somehow favor black people will come as a surprise to many in the black community who are concerned that the president hasn’t done enough to directly address the crisis of unemployment, especially among black men. I happen to believe Obama’s race-neutral employment policies, targeted to place, not race, are the way to tackle the problem. But I have an idea for Tavis Smiley, Cornel West and Michael Eric Dyson: They should hook up with the Tea Partiers. That’s an audience that really needs to hear their complaints about how little Obama is doing for black people.

Over to you teabaggers and Beverly Hillbillies for comment, correction and general fun.

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