Friday, April 17, 2009

Now that the tea party is over, what about a book club?

Watching some of the footage from Wednesday's tea parties, I couldn't help but wonder if many of the party participants had ever read a book. Oh, I'm sure many of them had purchased books—most likely not as reading materials, but as kindling. And, to be fair, I'm sure a great many of them had mouthed their way through Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh books, secretly wishing that the titles had been converted into Michael Bay movies (because, sheesh, reading is hard).

Why do I poke fun at the reading habits (or lack of such habits) of tea party participants? Because, from the pictures and video of Wednesday's tea parties, it is apparent that many of the people who went to these parties don't possess a rudimentary grasp of history, political science, sociology—many of the important ideas that are expressed quite well in, you guessed it, books. Instead of an independent ideological grassroots uprising, I saw flocks of mynah birds repeating what they had been trained to say by Fox News.

So, I'd like to make a modest proposal. Let's start a book club for our friends in the teabagging1 community. Here's the reading list:
  • The dictionary: We will start with the words "fascism," and "socialism," as I saw many people struggling to define those words, and others using them interchangeably.
  • "Nineteen Eighty-Four" by George Orwell: As the teabaggers don't seem to be able to articulate exactly how our current national predicament reflects fascism, this novel will provide an excellent point of reference. It illustrates what life would be like to live inside a true, functioning fascist, authoritarian, totalitarian state.
  • "Atlas Shrugged" by Ayn Rand: This incredibly long book, a favorite of libertarians, should serve to show teabaggers that they have little in common with Objectivism superheros Dagny Taggart, Hank Rearden, and John Galt. Perhaps they will wonder why they should side with incredibly rich and powerful people who embrace an ideology that doesn't care for them.
  • "The Diary of Anne Frank" by Anne Frank: Apparently, this group believes their concerns are comparable to those of Jews during the Holocaust.2
Are there additional books to add to the reading list? Send me a comment.

1 Insert Beavis-like chortle here.
2 In Chicago, one teabagger held a sign that said "The American taxpayers are the Jews for Obama's ovens." Regrettably, this is only one of the countless offensive signs that people hoisted at tea parties all over the country. See a sampling at this Huffington Post article.

1 comment:

Housewife - Shmousewife said...

Dave,
You put my frustrations in words...
Thank you.

Now for Governor Perry, what a bonehead!(Texas)

Patsy