April 15, 2009

Underneath The Tea

A man-shaped metal cage device that will be displayed in a new Iraqi museum is shown to reporters in Baghdad December 30, 2008. The device was used in the Iraqi Olympic Centre, where Saddam's son Uday used to lock underperforming athletes for weeks at a time and set them naked under the burning sun, the metal searing their flesh. Iraq is preparing to open a new museum that will allow Iraqis to see up close such macabre mementos of mass executions, torture,and other atrocities committed in Saddam's decades-long rule.  REUTERS/Thaier al-Sudani (IRAQ)

I don’t know. There are all kinds of seductive symbolic elements (hammers-and-sickles, U.S. flags, Hitlers, pigs, Uncle Sams, Indians, Alfred E. Nuemans, George Washingtons, cows, underdraws, Don’t Tread On Me flags, tea bags — of course) running through today’s tea party protests. It’s just hard for me to look at it that seriously. …In my mind, it’s like going back and analyzing those Sara Palin election hate-fests rallies (well documented by Chin’s slideshow from Hershey and Shippensburg.)

If one image did draw me in, however, it was this one.

What it captures for me, in this woman’s “crest fallen” version of an anti-tax/anti-Obama/anti-Government/anti-bailout/anti-(fill in the blank) Lady Liberty, is that Americans truly are hurting, angry and depressed … and thus ripe for such cheap exploitation.

(image: Scott Olson/Getty Images. caption: Nancy Thorner, dressed as Lady Liberty, participates in a Tea Party protest at the Federal Building Plaza April 15, 2009 in Chicago, Illinois. Tea Party protests calling for an end to corporate bailouts and excess government spending were held in cities nationwide today, the day American citizens must file their annual income taxes with the federal government)

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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