Moving rightwards in the US?

Now that the Republicans have control of the house, have the Tea Party histrionics been, more or less, able to exploit the uncertain economic and political environment? A few days back I was listening to Slavoj Zizek talk  about the rightward shift in European politics, and putting this in the wider context of economic uncertainty and a declining (or non-existent) real left, in Europe and in the United States.

An excerpt:

AMY GOODMAN: And as you come here to the United States, your assessment of the Tea Party movement?

SLAVOJ ŽIŽEK: It’s a perfect example of what I was talking about. I had almost—I use the terms a little bit ironically, but nonetheless—a kind of epiphany moment when, a year ago or so, when they organized, grassroot Republicans, all those—the first wake of tea parties against spending so much money for banks. You know what I was doing? I was sitting in a hotel room, jumping between two channels on TV. One was Fox News—you must know the enemy to fight it. The other one was PBS. On Fox News, it was a live transmission of a tea party in Texas where a singer, kind of a fake folk singer, was singing anti-Washington, anti-state-expenditure song. On PBS, there was a documentary on the great leftist icon Pete Seeger. I was shocked at how the words, although the political meanings of it, were almost the same. Both were singing about we small, ordinary people are exploited; big bad guys, bankers in Washington, and so on, Wall Street, and so on. This is the tragedy. This is the tragedy at its purest.”

Part I and Part II.

And linked from 3quarksdaily, a relevant article.


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