Moe Tucker, drummer for the Velvet Underground and solo musician, was recently interviewed at a Tea Party rally (2:40). Following its worldwide delivery, there was a backlash against Tucker from some of her fans. Based off of a ten second clip, people were saying inane shit like "the dream is dead" and acting as though this indicated some kind of mental lapse on her part. (I mean, what was the dream you people think she embodied? She didn't embody the lyrical content of the VU nor did she want to really take part in their scene.)
I try to reserve any criticism on members of the Tea Party until I know a bit more about their reasoning.* After seeing the original interview, I figured I would wait to hear more from Tucker. Well, The Riverfront Times just published an interview with her following the video release. In it, she discusses her viewpoints and talks about how she came to embrace the Tea Party. She makes some pretty wonderful points, but seems to - sadly - miss the mark on a lot of fundamental issues. Here are a few thoughts I had as I went through it:
"My philosophy was and is all politicians are liars, bums and cheats."
"I'm against a government that will not defend our borders; and on and on and on." If it isn't clear why I disagree, understand that I am not in favor of nations as they often reek havoc on this world and stand in the way of life.
Agree, but with some reservations which I go into after:
"I'm stunned that so many people who call themselves liberal yet are completely intolerant. I thought liberals loved everyone: the poor, the immigrant, the gays, the handicapped, the minorities, dogs, cats, all eye colors, all hair colors! Peace, love, bull! Curious they have no tolerance whatsoever for anyone who doesn't think exactly as they do. You disagree and you're immediately called a fool, a Nazi, a racist. That's pretty f'd up!!I would never judge someone based on their political views. Their honesty, integrity, kindness to others, generosity? Yes. Politics? No!"
The fact that kindness and generosity are in no way present in the defense of national borders. While I agree that the direct actions people take in life are very important, established support of a system which produces an unparalleled deal of harm is a huge issue. Can a person be judged for not stopping that system? No, because, really, how is that to be achieved by a single person? Can a person be judged for endorsing something that renders their values meaningless? Maybe not judged, but they at least shouldn't be delusional about it in thinking that the such contradictory principles can exist in harmony.
And the misguided:
"I started listening to what Obama was promising and started wondering how the hell will this utopian dream land be paid for? For those who actually believe that their taxes won't go up in order to pay for all this insanity: good luck!"
Why it's misguided:
Pretty obvious that Obama isn't gonna make a utopian dream land and she knows that. So why more extensively concerned with the ends being achieved with that money? Instead of being angry at pork-barrel spending, be outraged that your money is going to the devastation of life. Think of it this way: would you rather have your money go towards death or a "donkey museum"? I know what I'd pick!
But really there's no need for people to get so upset about this. To feel as though the image of someone they knew, which has been acquired through a body of work, has been defaced by some horrific impostor. Mo Tucker is who she is whether or not you agree with her.
So, Mo, the answer is still yes.
* My sense of the Tea Party is that they have a healthy distrust of power, but can be fairly misguided. Many seem to limit the definition of power to government figures in favor of spending. Not to mention that their often self-centered concern can easily be seen as the privileged fearing that they might experience disadvantage. (Tucker does point out that she grew up very poor, as I am sure many of Tea Party supporters did. So I am not suggesting that all members of the Tea Party share this trait. It does, however, manifest among many of its figures either overtly or as an undercurrent.)