This one goes back to 2009. No matter what you think of the Tea Party, I think it’s safe to say the professor provides us with a complete and total misreading of the political landscape.
Last but not least: it turns out that the tea parties don’t represent a spontaneous outpouring of public sentiment. They’re AstroTurf (fake grass roots) events, manufactured by the usual suspects. In particular, a key role is being played by FreedomWorks, an organization run by Richard Armey, the former House majority leader, and supported by the usual group of right-wing billionaires. And the parties are, of course, being promoted heavily by Fox News.
While I’m at it, this from Nancy Pelosi (also from 2009):
…This [tea party] initiative is funded by the high end — we call call it astroturf, it’s not really a grassroots movement. It’s astroturf by some of the wealthiest people in America to keep the focus on tax cuts for the rich instead of for the great middle class…
Contrast these dismissive remarks to the headlines of the moment: