Protofascism Comes To America
Is the Tea Party racist?
Democrats who play liberals on TV say it isn’t.
Vice President Joe Biden says the Tea Party “is not a racist organization” per se,
but allows that “at least elements that were involved in some of the Tea Party folks expressed racist views.”
Right-wing Congresswoman Michele Bachmann has received permission to form an official Tea Party Caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives.
The Tea Party matters.
So: is it racist?
Certainly a sizeable minority of Tea Partiers’ “take America back” rhetoric
is motivated by thinly disguised resentment that a black guy is president.
As for the remainder, their tacit tolerance of the intolerant speaks for itself.
“Take America back” from whom?
You know whom.
It ain’t white CEOs.
The Tea Party is racist.
But racism is only one facet of a far more sinister political strain.
It’s more accurate to categorize the Tea Party as something the United States has never seen before,
certainly not in such large numbers or as widespread.
The Tea Party is a protofascist movement.
Robert O. Paxton defined fascism as “a form of political behavior marked by obsessive preoccupation with community decline, humiliation or victimhood and by compensatory cults of unity, energy and purity,
in which a mass-based party of committed nationalist militants,
working in uneasy but effective collaboration with traditional elites,
abandons democratic liberties and pursues with redemptive violence
and without ethical or legal restraints goals of internal cleansing and external expansion.”
Typical Tea Party rants fit the classic fascist mold in several respects.