Theory Teacher's Blog

teabagged on tax day

I got teabagged on tax day. It’s true. But it’s not what you think. Or maybe it is. As my blog-comrade Dr. J pointed out in her post a week ago, the teabagger tactics are a hilarious semiotic blunder by the conservative movement — unaware as they seem to be of the word’s sexual double entendre.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

More about “teabagged on tax day“, posted with vodpod.

Anyway, as my other blog-comrade Dr. DRL noted yesterday, apparently some believe that “taxation with representation” is analogous enough to “taxation without representation” that they ought to channel the spirit of the Boston Tea Party. It’s funny and sad on too many levels…… and so, like many at my university, I came to work today and encountered a couple of teabags…  So as not to offend anyone, I will refrain from mentioning where I and many other of my colleagues encountered them…  

… and there’s an amusing coincidence here, because today in my class we were planning to discuss political tactics and how they connect with literary production and cultural identities. For instance, consider the strangeness of the Boston Teaparty itself — a bunch of white people dressing up like the native Americans. Why appropriate a Native American identity? And why do this when the white colonists had been killing Native Americans for centuries? Few are taught all of the “causes” of the Revolutionary war in their high school ideology classes (oops, I mean, high school history classes), but one of the reasons for the Revolutionary War was the desire of the very wealthy to speculate on land west of the Appalachians. Yes, indeed, this was the original subprime housing market fiasco. The British Empire was at that moment actually honoring its treaties with the Native Americans who lived there (not typical of the Empire, but sometimes they did honor their treaties)… So the irony of dressing up as Native Americans in order to symbolize liberty is a historically painful irony. And it’s no far stretch of the imagination to guess that the Boston Teaparty inspired one of the most terribly written novels to still be considered an American classic — James Fenimore Cooper’s The Last of the Mohicans, a novel in which a white guy becomes an American hero by somehow becoming a better Indian than the Indians themselves.

And now, the conservative moment has accidentally appropriated the sexual act of teabagging… Hmmmmm… More could be said, such as what has been said at The Huffington Post, but I think I’ll leave it at that.


April 15, 2009 - Posted by | media

1 Comment »

  1. Wow. I can’t believe you actually got teabagged.

    Thanks for the history lesson, too. (And, no, I’m not being sarcastic when I write that… I really didn’t know about the treaties!) There is SO much wrong with the whole “Tax Day TeaParty” idea that it really shocks me that somebody didn’t put the kibosh on it before it got out of the gates. Who’s running the show over there??!

    Comment by Dr. J | April 16, 2009 | Reply

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