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Are Tea Partiers ungrateful?

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Jae C. Hong/AP Photo

(Read caption) Tea party supporters cheer as they listen to Sarah Palin at the "Showdown in Searchlight" tea party rally in Searchlight, Nev., Saturday, March 27.

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From the NYT:

When Tom Grimes lost his job as a financial consultant 15 months ago, he called his congressman, a Democrat, for help getting government health care. Then he found a new full-time occupation: Tea Party activist… Mr. Grimes is one of many Tea Party members jolted into action by economic distress… they found common cause in the Tea Party’s fight for lower taxes and smaller government…. The Tea Party vehemently wants less — though a number of its members acknowledge that they are relying on government programs for help. Grimes, who receives Social Security…has filled the back seat of his Mercury Grand Marquis with…Frederic Bastiat’s “The Law,” which denounces public benefits as “false philanthropy.”

Ok, we get the point. Anyone mad at government is just acting like a spoiled hypocrite, ignorantly decrying the very thing that makes life worth living. Tea Party people are ungrateful wretches who will someday regret the effects of their protests. In the same spirit, we can imagine what the New York Times would be writing in the 1850s, reporting on new political movements in slave states.

When the middle-aged slave Jim developed a boil on his foot after a long day in the fields, he went crawling to the plantation to get it treated and bandaged. The master gladly obliged. Today Jim expresses a rising interest in the new abolitionist movement and is even demanding what he calls his freedom. This new freedom would mean an end to the amenities that are a mainstay of his life. He depends of plantation-provided food, housing, and medical care, but his living quarters are filled with pamphlets by William Lloyd Garrison and others agitating for a “new liberty.”

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