The "tea party" movement is, in my view, a mirror image of the Republican Party generally. There are some diverse, heterodox factions which compose a small, inconsequential minority of it (various libertarian, independent, and Reagan Democrat types), but it is dominated -- in terms of leadership, ideology, and the vast majority of adherents -- by the same set of beliefs which have long shaped the American Right (...)
All that said, there are some reactions to the Tea Party movement coming from many different directions -- illustrated by the patronizing mockery of Christine O'Donnell -- which I find quite misguided, revealingly condescending, and somewhat obnoxious. In two separate appearances (...) Karl Rove, that Paragon of Honor, insisted that she lacks the "character and rectitude" to be in the Senate (...)
It's hard to avoid the conclusion, at least for me, that, claims to the contrary notwithstanding, much of the discomfort and disgust triggered by these Tea Party candidates has little to do with their ideology. After all, are most of them radically different than the right-wing extremists Karl Rove has spent his career promoting and exploiting? Hardly. Much of the patronizing derision and scorn heaped on people like Christine O'Donnell have very little to do with their substantive views (...) and much more to do with the fact they're so . . . unruly and unwashed. To members of the establishment and the ruling class (like Rove), these are the kinds of people (...) who belong in Walmarts, community colleges, low-paying jobs, and voting booths on command, not in the august United States Senate.
Class/Cultural reactions to the tea party, por Lisa Kramer:
I can’t fully agree with him that the Tea Party is just Republican Plus. The name alone suggests something else, as does the 1776 iconography and the overtaking of old charges of “liberalism” with 21st century charges of “socialism.” When the spectacle is stripped away, I do see something that, at its core, is much closer to libertarianism than traditional Republicanism, even the more vitriolic Republicanism of the last decades. But that’s a lot of layers of spectacle to strip away, so I understand why the point can be debated.
The limitation of Greenwald’s argument is that it makes class and culture almost interchangeable. Over and over again, the enemy is regarded as “effete Guardians of Elite Political Power” or “the ruling class.” (...) I just don’t buy it. Cultural hierarchy seems to have little to do with class hierarchy; even Sarah Palin, who Greenwald labels another victim of cultural bias, was raised comfortably middle class.