By my lights, modern-day populism is a movement that pits the Joe Sixpacks against the elites who want to rob them of their rights, pickpocket their hard-earned money and, in extreme cases, suck out their precious bodily fluids. Which makes yesterday's tea parties kinda confusing since the right-wingers gathering in a bunch of cities seemed far less intent on trying to protect themselves from the elites than imposing their views on everyone else.
As history has proven time and again, this can be a precursor to another kind of movement known as fascism.
Mind you that the tea partiers are not necessarily headed in that direction. So far. And that the Party of Beavis and Butthead (aka the Republicans) remains abjectly clueless and will be further marginalized by allowing Glenn Beck and the Faux News fringies who have become its . . . uh, heart and soul to speak for it.
And mind you further, we're talking about 250,000 or so protesters compared to the 68 million people who voted for Barack Obama. But then there is always the future to look forward to. (Sigh.)
My own view of these events is simple: They attract a comparatively few people, some of them delusional and many whose anger is misdirected, and get them off the street for a couple of hours while they beat effigies President Obama with Whiffle Ball bats before returning to their bunkers to count Grandma's silverware.