The current manufactured crisis over the government shutdown, debt ceiling, and the Affordable Care Act should fool no one. The people behind it have an endgame, and it doesn't have all that much to do with what we're experiencing now. Tea Party Republicans and the corporate interests that enable them see a very different America than the one I've inhabited during my lifetime, and in fact the one people envision when they talk about "The American Dream".
The America they want can be described in one simple word. Oligarchy. What does that mean? From the dictionary:
Oligarchy: A form of government in which all power is vested in a few persons or in a dominant class or clique; government by the few.
If you pay close attention to the priorities of those who cut food stamps, want to turn Medicare into a voucher program, starve government agencies out of existence, who want to do away with Social Security, early childhood education, eliminate unions as well as the minimum wage, all the while arguing for bigger tax breaks and unlimited spending in political campaigns, you get the picture.
Whether they'll admit it or not, these oligarch wannabes have nothing but disdain and contempt for the poor. Dig beneath the surface, and you'll find they think being poor is simply the fault of the poor. It's a flaw, whether it be genetic, racial, or just plain bad luck. The Great Recession of 2008 created a problem for these people. Millions of Americans were thrown out of work and driven into poverty through no fault of their own.
The bank bailouts gave them the opening they needed. It gave them a movement they could fund called the Tea Party. The Republican old guard embraced the movement, and it helped engineer a GOP majority in the House in 2010. Now even the old guard can control the monster it helped create.
The irony is the very people who are letting the Tea Party drink at their trough will drop them like a bad habit when their usefulness is outlived.
That time may be coming sooner than anyone thinks.