I’ve often pointed out that the Tea Party defends a version of the Constitution which exists only in their heads, and certainly not the one supported by the Founding Fathers. During the American Revolution the revolutionaries were the liberals while today’s conservatives would be the Tories. After the Revolution the Tea Party would not have supported the Constitution. Their position is far closer to that of the Anti-Federalists who supported the Articles of Confederation. Thatdocument established a weak federal government which was much closer to the ideas of the Tea Party. The Constitution was written due to the failure of a government established upon the ideas now held by many in the Tea Party.
Bill Maher made a similar argument last night, telling teabaggers that the Founding Fathers would have hated their guts. The video is above via Mediaite. The full text follows:
And finally, New Rule, now that they’ve finished reading the Constitution out loud, the teabaggers must call out that group of elitist liberals whose values are so antithetical to theirs. I’m talking, of course, about the Founding Fathers, who the teabaggers believe are just like them, but aren’t. One is a group of exclusively white men who live in a bygone century, have bad teeth, and think of blacks as 3/5s of a person. And the other are the Founding Fathers!
Now I want you teabaggers out there to understand one thing. While you idolize the Founding Fathers and dress up like them and smell like them, I think it’s pretty clear that the Founding Fathers would’ve hated your guts. And what’s more, you would’ve hated them! They were everything you despise. They studied science, read Plato, hung out in Paris, and thought the Bible was mostly bullshit. And yet, here is a popular painting in wingnut America.
Yes, that’s Jesus with the Founding Fathers behind him, presenting the Constitution to America. Either that, or it’s a settlement offer for that boy after he sued the rectory.
Super-religious guy Glenn Beck likes to play dress-up as Thomas Paine. Thomas Paine, an atheist who said churches were “human inventions, set up to terrify and enslave mankind”. John Adams said, “this would be the best of all possible worlds, if there were no religion in it”.* Which is not to say the Founders didn’t have a moral code. Of course they did. They just didn’t get it from the Bible. Well, except for the part about it’s cool to own slaves. It’s in there, folks, I didn’t make it up.
The Founders disagreed amongst themselves about that, and most issues. But the one thing they never argued about was that political power must stay in the hands of the smartest people, and out of the hands of the dumbest loudmouths slowing down the checkout line at Home Depot.
And yet, Sarah Palin once said of Obama, “we need a Commander-in-Chief, not a professor of law standing at a lectern”. How gay is that! Well, I hate to break it to you, but:
They were not the common man of their day. Ben Franklin studied scientific phenomena like lightning and the aurora borealis, and were he alive today, he could probably explain to Bill O’Reilly why the tides go in and out.
James Madison was fluent in Greek and Latin, and could translate Virgil and Cicero. John Boehner can’t translate Fareed Zakaria. And Thomas Jefferson was an astronomer and a physicist who founded the University of Virginia, played the violin, and spoke six languages. Or as Palin would say, “all of them”.
The text came from a Daily Kos diary by BruinKid who also added the links in the transcript. His diary also includes additional background information, including calling out Maher for quoting John Adams out of context.