Monday, November 04, 2013


What is ideology anyway? Like most words you won’t get far turning to the dictionary. Presumably ideology is some sort of “visionary theorizing, a systematic body of concepts especially about human life or culture, a manner or the content of thinking characteristic of an individual, group, or culture, the integrated assertions, theories and aims that constitute a sociopolitical program.”

We are commonly being told these days that the Tea Party is ideological, they oppose President Obama on ideological grounds, that somehow they have “integrated assertions, theories and aims that constitute a sociopolitical program.” I don’t believe it. First of all I doubt that most Tea Party members are smart enough to actually embrace any genuine ideology, except perhaps something like government is bad, if that actually constitutes an ideology. Perhaps they believe that hating Obama constitutes an ideology? Or I guess they think that wanting people to go without health insurance, unemployment insurance, food stamps, minimum wages, Social Security, Medicare, and any other form of assistance constitutes a “theory that constitutes a sociopolitical program? Given that the Tea Party movement (or whatever  you want to call it) was not really a grass roots movement, but actually funded and created by billionaires, I doubt that ideology had much to do with it. Ideology in this context is merely a euphemism for greed.

I suppose there may be some Tea Partiers that actually do believe abortion, for example, is wrong. But this is not really an ideological position, and is certainly not “integrated” into some grander ideological belief system, especially as the very same people who are opposed to abortion are also opposed to food stamps for children, welfare, and etc. I guess you might argue that “government is the problem” is a form of ideology, but as this view is held by the same people who drive on highways, send their children to public schools, use the Postal Service, the Veterans Administration, accept subsidies for crops, enjoy Medicare, and so on, it is, once again, not really “integrated” in any realistic way.

Unless you are some kind of unthinking monster you cannot possibly believe in an ideology that denies health care to millions, food stamps, unemployment insurance, health care, living wages, and so on. Such beliefs are not ideological, they are stupid, thoughtless, short-sighted, and coached by those who stand to gain profit by denying them.  I do not believe Tea Partiers are ideological at all, watch what happens to them when the corporate teat is taken out of their mouth.

Tomorrow is an election day. I sincerely hope that Republicans everywhere are so soundly defeated they take their “ideology” with them to a much deserved and permanent “elephant graveyard.” As most of the Tea Partiers seem to come from Southern States maybe we could pass a law instructed them to keep their village idiots at home. Nevada sends their mentally ill and confused on buses to California, Southern states send them to Washington, D.C.  to protest everything that is right and decent about our country.  

  Optimism and stupidity are nearly synonymous.” 
Hyman G. Rickover

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