Fox News makes no bones about endorsing the extreme-right, proud-to-be-stupid Tea Party Express, but NPR is a bit more subtle in its pro-Tea Bagger coverage. Over the last three days it has provided this reactionary tour frequent, uncritical broadcasting time:
On Sunday's Weekend Edition Liane Hansen introduces NPR's Jay Brady who is traveling with this road show. In a completely uncritical report Brady makes these statements:
- "Well, I've been to four rallies now, in two days, and talked with quite a few people. Most of them, I'd say they're over 40 years old, and in general, they appear to be folks who work pretty hard for a living." (unlike the dirty hippie crowd who show up at antiwar functions).
- "And they talk about all kinds of issues....But I think the one thing that just about everyone had in common is that they feel like they're not being heard." (No mention of the really thoughtful signs about "dictator" Obama, and his birth certificate.)
- [describing the "mood" at the rallies] "You know, they feel a lot like a small county fair. People are serious about what's being discussed at the rallies, but it seems like they're also there to have fun." (I can imagine time traveling Brady using the same description reporting on early 20th century lynchings.)
- "A political action committee from California is sponsoring the bus tour...the Our Country Deserves Better PAC. The goal is to bring together different groups concerned about what he calls heavy handed government policies."
- "At the tea party rally, there were few, if any, fans of Mr. Obama and plenty of critics."
- "...There were also people holding signs criticizing government involvement in health care and excessive federal spending. The scene a few hours away in Ely was similar. This is a place where people are comfortable using language most others left behind with the end of the Cold War." [followed by a woman claiming "We don't need a communist nation. And that's what Obama's taking us to."]
- "Tea Party Express Chief Strategist Sal Russo says people, who come to these rallies aren't super focused on specific issues. He says they are motivated by broad ideals."
- "A lot of people attending these rallies say they feel left out, as if no one in Washington is listening to them anymore."
Still not sold on the salt-of-the-earth charm and idealism of these Tea Party know-nothings? Well, Tuesday evening's spotlight on the singing darling of the tea party mob should win you over for sure. Gosh, but golly, not only is he spouting the Obamunist-communist stupidity and encouraging populist reactionary zeal, but "he's black, has a ponytail and wears an earring"! Brady assures us that
"what's surprising about Marcus is that while he can be a little pointed at times, he also appears to have a lot of fun" and "Marcus knows what he believes and he's sticking with it."One really disturbing angle of NPR's favorable coverage of the public face of this movement, is how it completely ignores how similar the ideology and rhetoric of the Tea Bagger movement is to the resurgent militia movement. Also, as readers have noted, compare this positive saturation coverage of the Tea Party reactionaries to NPR's negative and non-coverage of the anti-war movement and you can't help but notice how far to the right NPR's editorial preferences lean...