Clueless Tea Partiers Shout "Shut it Down!" but They'll End Up Paying a Price

Tea Party rallies have featured chants of “shut it down! shut it down!” They're about to get a first-hand view of what that means. It won't be pretty, and the tragic irony is that they will be the among those taking a big hit.

Tea Partiers have a tenuous grasp on what the government actually does – they've been hoodwinked into believing that it's all about waste and fraud and giving money to foreigners and stealing their tax dollars to give it to the undeserving poor. Because of that, they are passionate about shooting themselves in the foot in order to advance the interests of America's wealthy elite.

Suzanne Mettler, a professor of government at Cornell University, found that there's a massive disconnect between who Americans believe various government programs serve and the reality. She looked at those who responded to a survey by claiming that they “have not used a government social program,” and found that a majority of them had.

Almost 2/3 of Americans who'd benefited from subsidized college funds, and a majority of those who'd gotten continuing education credits or student loans said they'd never benefitted from a government program. So did 44 percent of those on Social Security, 43 percent of those receiving unemployment benefits, 42 percent of veterans receiving VA benefits and 40 percent of Medicare recipients.

The reality is that the bulk of government programs do not serve the poor, or at least not exclusively. Gallup tells us that, demographically at least, the Tea Partiers represent a cross-section of America, and many would lose out, directly, if the politicians they elected are able to implement their radical agenda.





AlterNet / By Joshua Holland

Posted at April 7, 2011, 9:11am

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