x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

A complex brew

A New American Tea Party examines the views of the growing number of US citizens who have become disenchanted with what they see as creeping (and Un-American) federal interference into their lives.

A New American Tea Party John M O'Hara
Sceptre
Dh 72

A New American Tea Party examines the views of the growing number of US citizens who have become disenchanted with what they see as creeping (and Un-American) federal interference into their lives. Their protests have engaged the public, perplexed politicians and amused the satirists in equal measure.

While the author - who is, it transpires, a Tea Party activist - compares Barack Obama's fiscal policies with those that led to the original Boston Tea Party, he does not simply point the finger at the opposition Democrats. Leading Republicans, such as John McCain ("unfamiliar with free market philosophy") earn his opprobrium too. Surprisingly though, Sarah Palin, the movement's putative poster girl, attracts only one passing mention. "She has her merits", the author writes, "but the movement is not about personalities but principles."

However, O'Hara fails to address the irony, nay hypocrisy, of the views of some of the party's most ardent supporters. Pensioners on Medicaid clutching posters that cry: "Your mortgage is not my problem" are, it should be noted, actually benefitting from the same system they profess to dislike.