The Unbearable Elitism of David Brooks
“Personally, I’m not a fan of this movement. But I can certainly see its potential to shape the coming decade.”
So ends the sophomoric and sneering rant against the tea party movement by David Brooks. If he had written this in the first few sentences of his New York Times column, most people would not have needed to read his entire piece.
Why should anyone from the tea party movement read the piece? After all, tea party members are too stupid to understand it according to his dictum.
Brooks seems to believe that the tea party movement contains an uneducated rabble not capable of making up their own minds. You see, the tea party movement is against things merely because their educated betters are for it:
The educated class believes in global warming, so public skepticism about global warming is on the rise. The educated class supports abortion rights, so public opinion is shifting against them. The educated class supports gun control, so opposition to gun control is mounting.
That Brooks delivers this vitriol-filled diatribe in the New York Times should surprise no one. It is obvious that he believes that his paymasters want him to write another piece where they can laugh at all the little ignorant people who disagree with their grand, socialist plan for the U.S.
It is patently obvious that this man has never been to one tea party event in his life. His assumption that there are no “educated” people at these rallies is based on ignorance. He has no clue that there are doctors, lawyers, engineers, and other people with “useful” education in the movement. There are people with high school, college, and advanced degrees involved. When he speaks of the “educated” class, he means to say “ruling” class.
He does not just insult the intelligence of those who are part of the movement. He seems to think that the leadership is “mediocre” and in search of a figurehead. What he does not realize -- probably due to the fact he has never actually met anyone involved -- is that there is a feeling that the tea party movement does not need one “leader” or figurehead. It strives to avoid being a cult of personality driven by one person’s ego or ambition. In fact, if he were to do the smallest bit of research, he would discover that the tea party movement has distanced itself from a whole myriad of self-proclaimed “leaders.” Brooks writes:
Over the course of this year, the tea party movement will probably be transformed. Right now, it is an amateurish movement with mediocre leadership. But several bright and polished politicians, like Marco Rubio of Florida and Gary Johnson of New Mexico, are unofficially competing to become its de facto leader. If they succeed, their movement is likely to outgrow its crude beginnings and become a major force in American politics. After all, it represents arguments that are deeply rooted in American history.
Despite the insulting and patronizing tone of the entire piece, it is this paragraph that truly sums up how clueless this man is about the tea party movement. He calls tea party members uneducated and ignorant, yet he knows absolutely nothing about the real thing and is himself ignorant and misinformed. He relies on the left-wing media’s portrayal of the tea parties as “fringe” instead of doing true research.
Ultimately he believes that the tea party movement is only “against” and for nothing. If he attended, read, or watched anything from the tea party movement he would realize that they are for quite a few things. They are “for” the Constitution, the rule of law, the free market, limited government, and fiscal responsibility. In short, they are for “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
Brooks is not alone in his beliefs, but he has done one useful thing: he has summed up the “inside the Beltway” big government attitude of those who think they are better than the vast majority of Americans.
The sad thing is that he will no doubt take great pride in the fact that all those tea party members and supporters will take exception to his rant. He will claim that they just don’t know he is right because they are “uneducated” and unable to grasp that what he and his ilk are trying to do is for their own good.
The following from Brooks is truly despicable:
If there is a double-dip recession, a long period of stagnation, a fiscal crisis, a terrorist attack or some other major scandal or event, the country could demand total change, creating a vacuum that only the tea party movement and its inheritors would be in a position to fill.
Yes, he, like many on the far left, is claiming that the tea party movement is akin to the Nazi movement in the 1930s. Never mind the fact that the tea party movement makes perfectly clear that it strives to return to the values of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. Because it is “popular” it must be populist and no better than the rabble that followed Hitler.
Americans are fed up with those in D.C. because they routinely fail to deal with the problems at hand. They fail to protect the country from attack. They fail to reduce taxation and regulation. They give bailouts to failing companies. They fail to protect the rule of law.
What Brooks fails to see is that most Americans would take the wisdom of the Founding Fathers over the wisdom of David Brooks and his ilk.