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A party with tea

by on March 2, 2010

Although there’s a British Tea Party movement, I’m thinking of the American Tea Party. Frankly, as a name, I preferred the Mugwumps, or the Know-Nothings, or several other awesome parties. But, I didn’t create the Tea Party. Or, if you need something more, go for the Coffee Party.

I haven’t seen any advertisements marketing the Tea Party as young and glorious. Either I read too much news, and see mostly raging grannies (but the pessimistic ones, not the ones with a sense of humor), or I don’t read enough news, and haven’t stumbled upon any young Tea Party-ists. Anyhow, I see the Tea Party as a political coalition of old people. I don’t mind that at all, except that they seem to be trying to sell themselves as young and modern.

Benjamin Barber seems to think that the Tea Party won’t last because people die. The people least likely to die first, despite all the poisons in the air and the food, and despite the rotting of the stem of wheat that could affect more then ten percent of the world population, are the members of the millennial generation. I’ve read that the age of that generation is 13-29, but that can’t be right; it would make me a member of the millennials, and I’m pretty sure I belong to the The Greatest Generation, or Gen Y, or something that is not the millennial generation. Be that as it may, Barber thinks us young people might outlive the average Tea Partier, based on age and whatnot.

Let me diverge for a moment from the Tea Party, because I don’t understand them. They say that it is
“common-sense solutions we’re asking for: fiscal responsibility, free markets, limited government and lower taxes.”
Their methods leave something to be desired.

The Pew study that Barber mentions, but doesn’t site, lists a whole bunch of things millennials are good at, according to Barber. They “celebrate [diversity].” That shouldn’t be surprising. I’ve always thought it’s really weird that there are people who don’t. I grew up with my parents, who are definitely older than me, and they had a respect for diverse people. There’s also something about a young generation’s lack of religiosity: “far less religious than their elders — the least religiously observant generation Pew ever surveyed.” And the most important part, and here’s where I get back to the Caffeine Party.

Most significantly from the point of view of the Tea Party attack on Washington, the Millennials are more comfortable with institutions generally and with government in particular, than their democracy-distrusting elders, and are far more progressive than any previous generation. They went 66% to 32% for Obama in last year’s election, while 53% actually say government should do more to deal with our problems rather than less, as if government might actually belong to us (it’s called democracy)!

Right. So please, please, don’t take your government hand off my medicare. I’ll be wanting that someday.

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From → Politics, US Politics

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