Posted on | April 23, 2010 | 11 Comments
Have you been to any Tea Party events in the last year, Alex? (Emphasis/formatting mine)
The Tea Party.
- What is it?
- How long will it last?
The longer I report on this the more I think that the answer is
- a) disgruntled Republicans
- b) as long as it takes Republicans to win back Congress.
Politico makes a similar point today. The movement is now doubt influential. It is forcing moderate Republicans to the right. It scared the Democrats witless over health care. It helped get Scott Brown elected. But as it stands it will not be a transformative force. Its glue is anger about the recession, the spending and about Barack Obama’s agenda.
You’re dangerously close to something at the end of that paragraph, Alex. BHO is really a tool. He represents the pinnacle of homo progressivus, that delicate colloidal suspension of Marxism in hogwash that really feels that a human ant colony would be a great way to live. Especially if BHO and his puppet masters retain control.
It has no real coherent ideas beyond a nebulous anti-Washington-ism, fiscal control and lower taxes. There are very few genuine libertarians with real ideas about controlling spending, such as privatising social security, a savings plan to replace Medicare, or axing a federal department or two. The reason Ron Paul wins all these straw polls is he is one of the very few with ideas.
Maybe the point is less obvious from Merry England, Alex, but the root of the problems reside in the Constitutional ignorance of those taking an oath to uphold notions of Federalism, separation of powers, and common sense. We The People have been absentee landlords for decades.
The lack of coherent ideas has to do with the fact that Congress, as a unit, is a stone-cold pack of liars. Walking that back just a bit, the system that has evolved the last century renders forthright behavior a virtual impossibility. Even the most individually honest, personally respectable members of Congress are at pains to accomplish much without veering in the direction of grey areas.
“The Problem Will Never Fix the Problem“, states a profound post. The Federal government is collapsing in the direction of autocracy. When peaceful, impassioned citizens gather, that government and its propaganda organs started out by calling We The People racists and birthers. This hasn’t gained traction, due to the predominantly false nature of the charge. Then came astro-turf knock-offs like the Coffee Party. This week we’re seeing old tools like Bill Clinton employed to call We The People terrorists. This is going over like a showing of Triumph of the Will in a synagogue.
One is generally perplexed about what the Left will do next to dismiss the 80%-ish of Americans who understand that the Progressive plug must be pulled, and now. If the debt was not such a crushing threat, one would expect the Left to veer back towards the middle, which is how Independents were duped into voting for BHO in 2008. A simple course correction, a few Stupakian bargains, combined with some statistical manipulations of jobs, home sales, and the stock markets, and the approval ratings would improve enough tho be manageable for 2012. Also, more attempts to break up the Tea Parties along social vs. fiscal lines. Foreign policy is peripheral at Tea Parties, from what I’ve seen.
The blogs, Tea Parties, those rabid PJTV extremists are all combining to keep the pressure up. There is no lack of ideas, though. There is a surplus of ideas, constantly batted about. The Contract From America bears mention. Are these the final answers? Of course not. We can’t expect to erase a century of drift in even a decade. We can, we must attack the systemic causes of the situation. Chronic deficits are unethical. Taxing unrepresented future generations with debt is unethical. Acting as though the Constitution can be amended by systematically ignoring its provisions where inconvenient is unethical. Incumbency, in general, is a bad idea. Federal involvement in non-Federal issues is a bad idea. And so forth.
Pragmatically, the Tea Parties know that elections matter. Lots of people can make clever signs, but the Tea Party has to transition from a pleasant group hug at the town square to volunteer activism on a scale to make Madame Bowel Movement eat. . .her words.
Will the Tea Party effect that shift? Those of us who expect to greet the Founding Fathers in the afterlife, which is a sizeable chunk of the Tea Parties, won’t be ashamed at that meeting, I expect.