Tea Party still opposed to Obama even after Osama

13 May 2011

Professor Christopher Parker argues that the majority of Tea Party enthusiasts will remain opposed to Barack Obama and his administration despite his successful hunt for Osama Bin Laden. Citing data from his forthcoming book Will the Real Americans Please Stand Up?: The Tea Party and Right-Wing Extremism in the United States (with Matt Barreto), Parker also says race is a significant factor fuelling right-wing extremism.

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Tags: Barack Obama, Christopher Parker, Osama Bin Laden, Osama Bin Laden Dead, Osama Bin Laden Killed, Tea Party



11:25 AM on Tue 07 June 2011

Professor Parker comes across as very articulate and I am looking forward to picking up his book. The header on this page is somewhat less impressive: "race is a significant factor fueling extremism." Extremism leads to extremism; right. What he actually says, however, is that racial resentment, as an objective variable his research has operationalized somehow, is correlated with Tea Party membership. That's hardly the same thing as "extremism." I am sure -- and Parker alludes to this in his comments here -- that most Tea Party supporters are mainstream voters and citizens who are extremely dissatisfied with left-of-center policymakers. That may make them out as some alien other to the majority of Australian commentators, but it hardly makes them "extremists." Are the Greens "left-wing extremists." No. Sadly, this is the sort of non-nuanced shoot-from-the-hip editorializing I would expect from B-grade print journalism -- not a respected academic center. Can we take a more nuanced tack, gang?

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