If you ask around, Tea Baggers all get their information from the same unreliable sources
The Tea Party doesn’t get their news from the same places you or I get our news. A well-rounded individual might visit BBC America, NBC, Forbes, Business Insider, CNN or one of many sources of information. The Tea Party by in large receives their news from Fox, right wing blogs and AM talk radio. A proverbial information bubble if you will.
You’ve experienced it, just think back. A discussion with a Tea Party uncle or cousin during which you ask “Where did you hear <insert bogus claim about President Obama/Hitler/socialism/minorities/rape here>?” Inevitably they respond Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, Bryan Fischer or any number of horribly biased and dishonest sources. And no matter what you say, how factual your argument, they will never, never believe anything other than what those biased and dishonest sources tell them.
Case in point: Jonathan Capehart of the Washington Post decided to take a little road trip and ask Americans what they thought of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Traveling with MSNBC producer Stefanie Cargill, he visited Belmont, North Carolina, where he met David Jackson at a local hardware store.
Mr. Jackson is an older white gentleman who hates President Obama, hates Obamacare, hates liberals and is extremely angry about quite a few things. Like the Tea Party, much of what Mr. Jackson cites as the reasons for his rage simply aren’t true or have been twisted and tainted by that information bubble.
In response to Jonathan Capehart’s questions about the ACA, David Jackson said “I think it’s the biggest travesty in American history. It is forcing people to pay for other people’s health care, because they’re either too lazy or they know they can get the money from someone other than themselves.”
Jackson also suggested the ACA should be “thrown in the trash,” and if “they want to help poor people in this country, that’s what they should do.” He also completely disagrees with kids being able to stay on their parents’ insurance up until age 26, sharing how his own father threw him out when he turned 18. Mr. Jackson believes the ACA covers undocumented immigrants (it doesn’t), he believes in the right wing lies about Benghazi and he does not believe Osama Bin Laden is dead.
Towards the end of the interview, David Jackson launched into a tirade about President Obama “losing” his law license (not true) and the Muslim brotherhood. He stated that President Obama “doesn’t respect the American people as a whole. There have been many veterans groups that asked to have meetings with him or come to the White House and have a picnic on the East Lawn and he said no. And at the same time, this was about two years ago, the Muslim Brotherhood had 1,000 of their people come to the East Lawn for a prayer session.”
That was news to Jonathan Capehart who asked David Jackson where he had heard this. Mr. Jackson didn’t give specifics (they rarely do) and went on to rail against the members of the Obama administration who are admitted members of the Muslim Brotherhood. Again, he couldn’t state how he knew this, or who they are, he just knows they’re working to destroy America. He does however know those names “aren’t English.”
There is no East Lawn at the White House, the Muslim Brotherhood did not hold a “prayer session” on the non-existent East Lawn of the White House and they have not infiltrated the government. Rep. Bachmann tried this Six Degrees of Muslim Brotherhood last year and had her hand slapped by many Republicans including Senator John McCain. But Barack Obama’s got such an exotic name, and he was born in Hawaii which is in Africa and OH MY GOD he’s <whisper> black, we have to be scared of him because Glenn Beck says we should be.
That’s the bubble, and the Tea Party never watches, or listens to, or even acknowledges information from any other sources. If they don’t hear it on Fox or read it at The Drudge Report, it’s not real. Nothing from any other website, news outlet, newspaper, radio or television station is true, because the news that matters is the news in the bubble. The bubble is safe, it’s white and angry and it stokes the fear Tea Partiers already have for anyone different than them.
Here’s a clip of Chuck Todd, pointing out this information bubble. He also asks a question many of us would like answered-what planet are you on? Seriously, we’d like an answer.