Since the noisy and disruptive inception of the modern Tea Party several years ago, it has become clear that the center of gravity of that right-wing populist movement is solidly pro-corporate.
This is demonstrated by their enthusiastic support for “free markets,” smaller government, low taxes for the wealthy, and the privatization of Social Security. They have an obsessive fear of “socialism,” oppose government regulations and are skeptical of the positive influence of government generally. The modern Tea Party has an apparent disregard for overweening corporate power.
The pro-corporate sensibility of today’s Tea Party stands in striking and ironic contrast to the fierce anti-corporate anger of the original Boston Tea Party patriots toward the East-India Company (“the Walmart of their day”), as Thom Hartmann explains clearly in the short history lesson in the video below.
Some years ago Hartmann, shopping in an antiquarian bookshop in London, ran across a two-hundred year-old book containing the only first-hand account by an actual participant in the Boston Tea Party of 1773. After recounting this man’s tale, Hartmann concludes:
“The Boston Tea Party.
It was a revolt against corporate power and corporate tax cuts.
From the mouth of the man who was there that night.
And today? It seems as if this generation of tea partiers — as they begin to slowly realize that their so-called movement is being funded by America’s second-largest privately held corporation and its owners (the East India Company of today) — maybe they’re beginning to wake up.
There was a tea party event scheduled today for Washington DC and so few people showed up that Fox News — which sent a satellite truck and was intending to break into their own news with the coverage — gave up and went home.
It’s time the truth of the REAL Boston Tea Party came out.”