Tuesday, September 21, 2021
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Tea Party: A Cacophony Of Irrelevants

I know what you’re thinking: how the HELL can he use a title like that? Well, solely because the Tea Party has taken away all my sound arguments in defense of their position(s) and made me irrelevant, right alongside them.

When he first said it, I disagreed with my old friend Erick Erickson as he suggested it was time for the Tea Party to put down its protest signs and pick up jobs INSIDE the Government and within the GOP party establishment. The basis for my position at the time was that, I believed, the Tea party’s greatest asset was its angst and its energy; Conservatives walking the streets and shouting out their demands was something you just didn’t see enough of and we’d be far better off if we encouraged it rather than poo-pooing it out of existence just as it was beginning to show some signs of effectiveness.

Given the behavior and the performance of the two years hence, I’m here to tell you: I was wrong.

After all the successes the Tea Party has enjoyed by way of their direct impact on the headcount in Washington DC, it is beyond my comprehension as to how they have become inexplicably incapable of extricating their own sorry heads from their own sorry asses.

There. I said it.

Plucking defeat from their very own jaws of victory, the Tea Party has accomplished no more than to make fools of themselves in this game of chance called “politics” having, instead, chosen to become the very caricatures they continue to allow the media to make them out to be. I’m ashamed to know the lot of them. They’ve managed, somehow, to make the latest battle in Congress over deficits and debts to be all about THEM rather than the legislative crisis at hand; I’m personally embarrassed FOR them as I’m being forced to watch them self-immolate.

And, now that I’ve gotten your attention and turned your ire in my direction, consider what the Tea Party has accomplished in the debt ceiling debate.

Nothing.

The news, reported by the usual suspects, is all about what effect the Tea Party has had on the GOP…on the Freshmen in the House…and the extent to which they have (in the eyes of many) only served to dumb down the dialog. Mind you, this is coming from the media elites who are known Liberal operatives…or fairly accurately accused of same… but understand that it is ONLY the Liberal Operatives that command the airwaves. And they are gobbling up oodles of bandwidth and airspace, paid for by the Tea party’s own inanity, to further and push the meme. Even Obama himself has been handed the opportunity, time and again, to move away from discussing the matters at hand and pointing out, instead, that the problem with the Debt ceiling crisis…and spending and revenues and deficits… is the Tea Party’s interference in adult matters.

I give you Friedman, and I offer Dowd, and because you’ll suggest I’m cherry picking, I’ll offer you the Tea Party Nation’s OWN Press Release which, I can assure you, cost them a lot of money to publish and push across the wires:

“A failed CCB bill gets you no cover. The ONLY way any Republican may get forgiveness from us is if he obtains a high price tag like $500 billion in 2012 first-year cuts, defunding of Obamacare and Planned Parenthood, sweeping reform of all health care entitlements such as Medicare, and actual Congressional passage of a Balanced Budget Amendment,” Phillips said.

That’s not the sort of approach you’ll find encouraged anywhere in the book “How To Make Friends And Influence People” and it certainly is not the way to go about building a coalition. In fact, how far apart is the Tea party, really, from the party they are trying to clean up (read: ouster) when all they have for persuasion is “my way or the highway”? Do they seriously believe they are going to win over moderates, independents (like me) or-God forbid-blue dogs on the left?

My friends are increasingly at each others’ throats. Some are staying engaged but are increasingly shutting up more and more frequently because they’re tired of being yelled over (and yelled at). Others are re-thinking whether it was such a good idea after all… this “throw all in with the Tea Party”… because they are fast realizing this latest version of “it” isn’t much different from the KosKidz (or a dozen other screaming Liberal fan clubs) because all they seem to know how to DO anymore is just bitch for the sake of bitching.

It seems to me that the next logical step for the Tea Party movement (they have arrived at that fork in the road moment…again) is EITHER to shut up and govern through building coalitions which understand the meaning of the word compromise…or man up already and become an official Political Party.

However much the Tea Party might be feel emboldened somehow by the attention they are getting, they are a long way from being capable of helping govern; coalition-building and compromise are the cornerstones of a Democracy and marginalizing your potential coalition partners is the best way I can think of to wind up standing out in the cold with no seat at the table. It’s great good fun to be pissed off, get some headlines, and help get people elected…but if that is your end game, and you have no plan for how to “govern” once you get them there, then all you’ve accomplished is to wind up irrelevant, and make [gulp, retch] Maureen Dowd right.



[CrossPosted…]

haystackhttp://unwashedphilosopher@gmail.com
There's not much to say... I come from a long line of Appalachian folk that landed in America long before flipping off the King was even a twinkle in the eyes of our founding fathers. We have been Carpenters and coal miners... Soldiers & Sailors and pig farmers and Sunday morning circuit-riding preachers. Hell, I'm told we have even been fairly decent bootleggers too.

31 COMMENTS

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31 COMMENTS

      • Gird your loins, Hay, I’m just in a good mood today. 🙂

        I have a line in the sand with a signpost next to it. The initials on the sign are TP and it does not stand for tea party. 🙂

        Always look forward to Great Writings in Political Philosophy on UP. You’re one of several who can persuade and motivate the peeps. Thks for letting the Town Crier speak.

      • Well, Stack, guess I agree with most of your article. You’ll catch hell any way. All I have to do is check my TP mail lists every day to know how “out there” many of the TP folks are. Full of kick ass and bravado. Yeah, they are.

        But when the shit was on the line in Nevada last November, how many TP folks went there to work on the ground? There wasn’t any shortage of lefty activists to work for Reid.

        How many TP folks have ever been to Washington DC and taken a meeting with critter or their LA? How many have ever been to a political meeting where real work actually occurs? How many ever sat at a table at a really tense moment and said, “I can live with that.”

        Damn few have a clue how the process works but they are great chest-beaters and full of rage against the debt. OK but… It would be interesting to promote some of them to real power and then say, alrighty Tom Teaparty, how bout it? Let’s cancel the Department of Education, throw those 5000 useless paper shufflers out and save ourselves 76 billion this year. Then, then they might find out how it feels to choose.

        That said, this uprising of the TP is the best hope for beating Obama and reversing the statist agenda. I hope it works out for us but it won’t if TP conservatives can’t understand who the enemy is and how to cut a deal when less than perfect is all that can be had.

        Shut it down you say? Might work and it might blow up. What if it didn’t work? I’m not high on the leadership skills of Boehner and friends. What if it blew up and the House flipped back to Pelosi? We’d be feeling pretty sick that we couldn’t sweat out the next 18 months when a GOP with even more conservatives might have all the power.

        I just lost what I considered to be a friend over this crap sandwich debt deal. Other people I admire and I believe to be on the side of right are under heavy fire from a lot of people who identify themselves as tea party folks.

        I am not amused. I thought I was part of the tea party movement. Maybe I’m not if I have to be against a warrior like Col West.

        A wise man once lamented that the grass roots conservative movement was in danger of death by skinflint. While that may still be true, there’s more than one way to kill a movement. Purity is poison.

  1. Glad you included the phrase “plan for how to govern” ‘stack. That plan was created224 years ago and while it was about a form of government, the people at that time were used to being ‘ruled’. How far is governing away from ‘ruling’. Also, the plan didn;’t talk much about a democracy, and comnpromise, and coalitions and factions and deals. $14 Trillion on our way to $25 trillion, ‘stack. Yeah, I’d say you put a bullseye on your shirt and walked out in front of the floodlights tonight. Best of luck.

  2. I have a great deal of respect for you Haystack, but I think you are wrong with this. Without the pressure and the conservative freshmen the GOP would have, based on past experience, negotiated a worse deal than the dems starting offer. It happens every time. It didn’t happen this time.

    The problem with the compromise meme is that the conservatives have already compromised. Again, when the “middle ground” will destroy our country in short order, and even the other side knows it, they just hope it will happen after the next election, where exactly do we compromise to? The debate should be what cuts to make, and that isn’t the debate they are having. The debate they are having is how much INCREASES they can get away with and make people think they are cutting.

    Of course the left has used the tea party as a distraction. I believe when they are kicking the conservative as “the American Taliban”, that is actually progress compared to when they used to do the exact same thing with GOP moderates. There are some bad actors, but if you look around the voices are pretty much all the same as they have been – the only difference is the media can’t ignore the voting block so they must marginalize it.
    I’m all for coalitions and compromise – provided that the ticket for entry isn’t to give away EVERYTHING I want.
    As someone said recently, the Founders were very good at compromising, but they compromised with each other, not King George.

    Don’t expect to get shot from over here Haystack, but expect to be disagreed with. I really do like you, but I disagree pretty much from beginning to end.

  3. Baloney.

    One, the Tea Party doesn’t exist. There are different noisy groups of people saying that they are the Tea Party, but there is no such thing. There is no national Tea Party. There is no regional Tea Party. There is no registered Tea Party.

    Those of us who consider ourselves Tea Partiers (or Teahadists, or whatever) are just individual people who are sick and tired of DC spending insane levels of money. We are tired of them borrowing our future. We are tired of their unwillingness or inability to face the reality of our looming fiscal disaster.

    Yes, the media plays to the groups. Yes, they try to make us all look bad, but they tried to make Christians look bad with the Norwegian murderer as well. I can assure you, it didn’t work any better for them then as it will now.

    People who are sick of gov’t waste and spending far, far, far outnumber those who believe that the most recent 10 year plan actually has a snowball’s chance in hell of actually doing anything 10 years hence.

    They are going to vote on a balanced budget amendment which will be defeated. They acknowledge in advance that it will be defeated. They are going to cut spending expected growth rates of spending by a grand total of $20 billion, which works out to .04 percent (yes, that’s right, it’s not even 5 percent of 1 percent of the budget.) And spending continues to increase.

    They are borrowing over 40 cents of every dollar they spend (yes, that’s 40%. A full 40%, not .04 percent. Decimals matter very much.) Yet somehow or another WE are the unrealistic ones?!? WE are the ones who are living in a fantasy land?!?

    Some years back, when GWB was trying to reform Social Security, I watched a Senator (I think he was from Connecticut) say that yes, SS was going to be bankrupt in 20 years, but he wasn’t going to be in Congress anymore, so of course he wasn’t going to support its reform.

    That’s what I see going on now. These guys think that a 10 year plan will buy them time, so they kicked the can. Well, one of these days, the can is going to hit the wall, and I hope it’s full of Kennepack and it blows right back in their [redacted] faces. It’s what they deserve.

    And mind you, I’m not talking about the Freshmen “Tea Party” members. I’m talking about every [redacted] one of them. Every [redacted] one of them, incumbents and insurgents, ran as fiscal conservatives, from Jeff Flake and John Boehner to Chip Cravaack and Billy Long, from Dan Boren and Debbie Two Names to JoAnn Emerson and Shiela Jackson Lee, from Claire McCaskill and Harry Reid to Marco Rubio and Rand Paul, all the way to Barack Obama.

    Anyone who isn’t up there slamming the door shut on the Treasury like the building is on fire is living a lie.

    I don’t want to hear any more about how reality is that this is the best we can do. Reality is that “this” is just another ten steps down the road to insolvency and Greece.

    • I’m with you Queen. Even though I’ve participated in TEA Party protests locally, there really is no “TEA Party Movement” beyond the local groups. There are actually three TEA Party/Patriot groups in my area, (San Francisco East Bay Area fer G-ds’ sake!). They don’t interact or coordinate in any way.

      The angst that allows such groups to form is the key here. That’s not going away no matter how the MSM slanderizes or belittles individual groups/actions/persons.

      I have joined the GOP as an elected Committee Member and continue to point out to non-member TEA Party types that this is what’s needed going forward. Some listen, some don’t, but the momentum is building.

  4. NO, Haystack. I’m just an average voter who is sick to the gills of the games that politicians play and the status quo in DC. Our people are hurting too badly. How much more of this BS should we take for the sake of “being reasonable” before it ends up breaking our spirit?

    And it’s really ironic that you bring this up today, because I just read three articles this morning from typical leftists stating that Repubs may actually be on the verge of pulling off one of the biggest coups that’s existed in this nation’s history. Would that be case if we had conformed to the expectations of those who condescendingly refer to us as “hobbits” and tell us to “get our a@@e@ in line”? Not a chance. It’s because conservatives stood their ground, plain and simple.

    We’re the best hope of this nation has of turning things around. He!!, we may be the ONLY hope this nation has.

    But there’s more to it than just that for me. I got a bad report from a doctor. We’ll just have to see how things go. But what time I have left isn’t going to spent kow-towing and bowing down to a bunch of hypocrites who are determined to run this nation into the ground, you can count on that.

      • Thank you, Queen and RH

        I wouldn’t have brought it up at all, because I don’t like being the object of sympathy and there’s still a way to go yet before the outcome is determined, so to speak, but…when you get that kind of news, even it just turns out to be a scare and nothing more than a scare, and it starts hitting home how short life really is, how fragile and precious is it…so much of what goes on in politics is a bunch of meaningless BS if it doesn’t get down to the nitty gritty of OUR people. They are THE backbone of OUR nation. Without their spirit and drive, without their hope and confidence, without their dreams and their hopes, this is just a chunk of land like any other chunk of land.

        Who do these politicians up there in their lofty offices they are to take this for granted? They mean next to nothing in comparison to the everyday ordinary citizen who goes to work day in and day out, paying their bills, facing all these challenges, trying to provide a life for their children!

        Yeah…sorry for the rant, but this isn’t the time to pussy-foot around. This is the time to get things done. Don’t take time granted!!!

        • Well, it is really support. You are a courageous and fine young woman who has the respect of many if not all the peeps who visit here. So I really thank you for sharing what is going on, as Mac said, let us know if you need anything.

  5. You’ve been reading my mail, ‘Stack. How is it again we disagree? As Marx and Bakunin disgareed? Or Lenin and Mao?

    I do think you paint the “Tea Party” with too broad a brushstroke, as Big Tea Party, such as TPN, quoted here, pretend to speak for millions of unaffiliated small-town citizens who, I pray, will continue to go it alone, continue to grow in numbers, and prosoer as a pissed off a citizenry, and ignore these pompous asses who presume greatness. TPN, et al, yes, I’d like to see them file as Third Party(ies) and count the fifteen or so souls who will sign up.

    The GOP members in the House still only respond for the most part to to their own constituents. AS we’ve seen from some we’re closer to, they were being damned before they were even sworn in.

    The Tea party you speak of can indeed take a leap over the cliff. They won’t even be missed.

  6. When speaking of the TEA Party you are speaking of a Movement and those who are on FOX or who have the biggest email lists do no a TEA Party Movement make, they are just the ones who are making money off of it, I don’t listen to them nor follow them, I follow myself in the mold of conservatism!

  7. First to what matters most in this thread: Lineholder…may God’s mercy and the Virgin Mother’s grace be with you, and guide you, and bring you comfort and peace through the days that lie ahead for you.

    BobM? You should know by now that I prefer being in the crosshairs…it’s what they pay me to do around here…

    Queenie & Hooah, as much as I love you two dearly, I’m having a hard time squaring this:

    One, the Tea Party doesn’t exist. There are different noisy groups of people saying that they are the Tea Party, but there is no such thing. There is no national Tea Party. There is no regional Tea Party. There is no registered Tea Party.

    With this:

    Of course the left has used the tea party as a distraction. I believe when they are kicking the conservative as “the American Taliban”, that is actually progress compared to when they used to do the exact same thing with GOP moderates. There are some bad actors, but if you look around the voices are pretty much all the same as they have been – the only difference is the media can’t ignore the voting block so they must marginalize it.

    Like it or not…and there may be “two” Tea parties – the national sentiment and the physical groups of people – resistance to Liberal incursion on our freedoms and liberties is being defined for us in the media and from the Left by the “group” not the sentiment.

    Yes, Red, I am talking the group…not the individuals that espouse the political positions.

    Look folks-if I didn’t write this piece, and ruffle a few feathers, then when would the conversation ever come up? We are being represented, in the eyes of the media and our political opponents, by the “group” of people that have taken our sentiments and made themselves our spokespeople…without our permission.

    However much any of you might agree with some of what they have said or done, they are not helping the cause we all think we are fighting for. I don’t back off the statement I made in the original piece; we got as good as we’re going to get THIS GO ROUND given the math – however inconvenient it might be – of not having the Senate. Should we have let the Government shut down unless and until they gave us CC&B or the Ryan plan? Absolutely.

    I have been a shut down advocate from day one…I want anarchy. But the reality is I am in the minority…and so is both the “Tea party” AND the “Tea Party” sentiment in the halls of Congress. As my tattoo says…it is what it is.

    We don’t get SOMETHING out of the GOP on this issue, and I promise you, we’ll lose the House, will NOT take the Senate, and will ABSOLUTELY see Obama re-elected…and we’ll all be asking ourselves what the hell happened.

    Vassar…you may be reading MY email rather than me reading yours, my friend…I will continue to insist that so long as we’re stuck with a two party system…and lean R because the L’s are a bunch of lunatics…we’re going to HAVE to form coalitions and agree to compromises.

    Sorry BobM-we disagree on one major piece of your initial hypothesis…we absolutely DID discuss Democracy, and we absolutely DID form coalitions…derived from the factions that hit the room when the Constitution was written. Back then there was the common cause of being free from the King’s tyranny…but there is no way there would EVER have been agreement on just what they were all going to DO with themselves once they declared independence without having had to make a great many compromises.

    We sent 80 new people into a sea of over 500. Anyone that thought that would end the discussion about who was in charge, and who called the shots, were grossly mistaken. This is only going to get better when Conservatism rules both Houses…and as a GOP h8r, I’ll only say that they are as close as I’m going to get to Conservatism so I have no choice but to compromise my principles each and every damn time I pull the lever.

    That advice would be well-heeded in this discussion as well. It took many years to make things this bad-Bush owns some of this himself-and it surely doesn’t get fixed in one cycle with 80 new guys…and firing them for falling short of expectations from a group that isn’t even a “group” but is a “national sentiment” that a lot of people share is not going to expedite matters nor fix the larger problem.

    < /2 cents>

    • That was considerably more than 2 cents, Haystack. You addressed not only the subject at hand but all the ones who disagreed with you en masse. Well done.

      For myself, I’m an anarchist, too, so I have no axe to grind with Haystack. What I will say is that I’m just as fed up with the TeaParty Folks at this point as I am with any other group involved in this situation. I have had to advise my parents, both in their 80’s, to go get some cash out of the bank, just to be on the safe side. Both were alive, although very young, when FDR closed the banks in the Depression. My mother was horrified that it might happen again.

      Thanks, every single political entity who made this possible and who made my advice to my elderly parents necessary. And screw you to the wall with great big sharp screws, too. That means the POTUS, the Congress, and the TP’s too. They all have played a role in this debacle.

    • I’ll be the first in sending some feedback on this Haystack. First of all, thanks for your concern. And just so everyone knows, I’ll be in and out for a few weeks. If things go well, I’ll be around longer than that.

      Haystack, building a strong coalition would involve mutual respect, trust and confidence. The door has to swing both ways, not just one. This can’t all be laid at the door of conservatives or TEA Party people when establishment Repubs would love to undermine conservatives in any way they can. They’ve been shooting to discredit DeMint for years, in just about every way that they can. So I really don’t understand how you see a coalition as being possible if it isn’t going to be mutual. And if isn’t, then why compromise?

      One of the things included in the Constitutional documents was pledge…”we pledge our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor”. Conservatives could probably make that pledge. If establishment Repubs won’t, then the coalition comes to nothing and compromise is meaningless.

    • Oh, I understand the founders *discussed* democracy, etc. but what resulted was a Republic, And while ‘parties’ were not mentioned in the document, we now have…how many? D’s, R’s L’,Socialists, Greens which may be seated as such. Sure there are factions and coalitions within the parties. The problem I see are the factions and coalitions *reaching across the aisle* of *moderates* in furtherance of creeping socialism. As you say, it is what it is, and we will have to take what we get. But who is it you want to shut up? Dick Armey? Michelle Bachmann? Sarah Palin? Rick Perry is gaining momentum and the media portrayed him as a secessionist for a while. You want him to shut up? You say you want anarchy and then you worry about being painted by the media in one way or another. Why worry? 🙂

      • Whoa there cowboy 🙂

        I don’t worry about the media painting me any color they want. Here at UP, and in most places across the rightosphere, everyone wants to save the GOP…wants to invest in IT as the place to foster a rebirth of Conservatism because it once, allegedly, was the warm and snuggly home of the ideology. I disagree…in very strong terms…that the GOP will ever become “Conservative” because it is not in their best interests – electorally – to do so. This is because, by and large, Conservatism has been helped to a slow-bleed death by the opposition and the media, and any self-respecting political opportunist is going to want to keep “Conservatism” within the GOP to a manageably dull roar. but that is my opinion alone, and I admit to being cyncial as a man my age can possibly be.

        I don’t know where I said I wanted to shut anybody up Bob…but honestly I wish Dick Armey would go back into a well-deserved retirement…as to all those ‘gaining momentum” I only ask this: momentum with whom? the Tea Party that doesn’t exist? Or the tea party sentiment that has very little “nationwide” control over who is in office and what they do once they get there?

    • HS, we cannot address this:

      Like it or not…and there may be “two” Tea parties – the national sentiment and the physical groups of people – resistance to Liberal incursion on our freedoms and liberties is being defined for us in the media and from the Left by the “group” not the sentiment.

      If we formed a true and honest third party (pretending like the Libertarians and Greenies don’t exist – because they may as well not) and the party was hugely popular and successful, if Mother Teresa came back from the grave and led us with Jesus Christ as our spokesman and Geo. Patton as our warrior, the media would demonize us.

      The people who say they are fiscons have *got* to draw a line in the sand and that line cannot be in spending cuts 5 years out.

      And as I said before, I am not talking about our freshmen, they don’t have nearly as much power as our old mules in office. I am talking about every one of them who promised fiscal sanity when they ran for office. And you’re nuts if you think I’m restricting my phone calls to Roy Blunt (freshman in the Senate) or Billy Long (freshman in the House), I’ve been calling Claire McCaskill on her false promises regularly and I will continue to do so.

      It won’t do any good, but she’s up in ’12 and I like to make them sweat.

      • Now HERE, my dear, we completely agree.

        All politics is local-no matter what we do or how much (or succinctly) we bitch…all we can PHYSICALLY do is pull the correct lever and get everyone we know or can make listen to us to pull the same ones.

  8. Were it not for the Tea Party, we would not be having this conversation because there would not be a GOP majority in the House. Were it not for the Tea Party, hundreds of thousands of voters would be disengaged from the process. Were it not for the Tea Party, there would not be new precinct committee members all over the country.

    The Tea Party never was about deals, or image, or publicity. It is about doing the right thing, no matter what the consequences. It is the bright light of ideological purity and common sense, not the gray of compromise.

    The Tea Party is a like compass – you can choose to go in the proper direction, or you can choose to go somewhere else, but the last thing you should do is blame the compass.

      • Gird your loins, Hay, I’m just in a good mood today. 🙂

        I have a line in the sand with a signpost next to it. The initials on the sign are TP and it does not stand for tea party. 🙂

        Always look forward to Great Writings in Political Philosophy on UP. You’re one of several who can persuade and motivate the peeps. Thks for letting the Town Crier speak.

      • Well, Stack, guess I agree with most of your article. You’ll catch hell any way. All I have to do is check my TP mail lists every day to know how “out there” many of the TP folks are. Full of kick ass and bravado. Yeah, they are.

        But when the shit was on the line in Nevada last November, how many TP folks went there to work on the ground? There wasn’t any shortage of lefty activists to work for Reid.

        How many TP folks have ever been to Washington DC and taken a meeting with critter or their LA? How many have ever been to a political meeting where real work actually occurs? How many ever sat at a table at a really tense moment and said, “I can live with that.”

        Damn few have a clue how the process works but they are great chest-beaters and full of rage against the debt. OK but… It would be interesting to promote some of them to real power and then say, alrighty Tom Teaparty, how bout it? Let’s cancel the Department of Education, throw those 5000 useless paper shufflers out and save ourselves 76 billion this year. Then, then they might find out how it feels to choose.

        That said, this uprising of the TP is the best hope for beating Obama and reversing the statist agenda. I hope it works out for us but it won’t if TP conservatives can’t understand who the enemy is and how to cut a deal when less than perfect is all that can be had.

        Shut it down you say? Might work and it might blow up. What if it didn’t work? I’m not high on the leadership skills of Boehner and friends. What if it blew up and the House flipped back to Pelosi? We’d be feeling pretty sick that we couldn’t sweat out the next 18 months when a GOP with even more conservatives might have all the power.

        I just lost what I considered to be a friend over this crap sandwich debt deal. Other people I admire and I believe to be on the side of right are under heavy fire from a lot of people who identify themselves as tea party folks.

        I am not amused. I thought I was part of the tea party movement. Maybe I’m not if I have to be against a warrior like Col West.

        A wise man once lamented that the grass roots conservative movement was in danger of death by skinflint. While that may still be true, there’s more than one way to kill a movement. Purity is poison.

  1. Glad you included the phrase “plan for how to govern” ‘stack. That plan was created224 years ago and while it was about a form of government, the people at that time were used to being ‘ruled’. How far is governing away from ‘ruling’. Also, the plan didn;’t talk much about a democracy, and comnpromise, and coalitions and factions and deals. $14 Trillion on our way to $25 trillion, ‘stack. Yeah, I’d say you put a bullseye on your shirt and walked out in front of the floodlights tonight. Best of luck.

  2. I have a great deal of respect for you Haystack, but I think you are wrong with this. Without the pressure and the conservative freshmen the GOP would have, based on past experience, negotiated a worse deal than the dems starting offer. It happens every time. It didn’t happen this time.

    The problem with the compromise meme is that the conservatives have already compromised. Again, when the “middle ground” will destroy our country in short order, and even the other side knows it, they just hope it will happen after the next election, where exactly do we compromise to? The debate should be what cuts to make, and that isn’t the debate they are having. The debate they are having is how much INCREASES they can get away with and make people think they are cutting.

    Of course the left has used the tea party as a distraction. I believe when they are kicking the conservative as “the American Taliban”, that is actually progress compared to when they used to do the exact same thing with GOP moderates. There are some bad actors, but if you look around the voices are pretty much all the same as they have been – the only difference is the media can’t ignore the voting block so they must marginalize it.
    I’m all for coalitions and compromise – provided that the ticket for entry isn’t to give away EVERYTHING I want.
    As someone said recently, the Founders were very good at compromising, but they compromised with each other, not King George.

    Don’t expect to get shot from over here Haystack, but expect to be disagreed with. I really do like you, but I disagree pretty much from beginning to end.

  3. Baloney.

    One, the Tea Party doesn’t exist. There are different noisy groups of people saying that they are the Tea Party, but there is no such thing. There is no national Tea Party. There is no regional Tea Party. There is no registered Tea Party.

    Those of us who consider ourselves Tea Partiers (or Teahadists, or whatever) are just individual people who are sick and tired of DC spending insane levels of money. We are tired of them borrowing our future. We are tired of their unwillingness or inability to face the reality of our looming fiscal disaster.

    Yes, the media plays to the groups. Yes, they try to make us all look bad, but they tried to make Christians look bad with the Norwegian murderer as well. I can assure you, it didn’t work any better for them then as it will now.

    People who are sick of gov’t waste and spending far, far, far outnumber those who believe that the most recent 10 year plan actually has a snowball’s chance in hell of actually doing anything 10 years hence.

    They are going to vote on a balanced budget amendment which will be defeated. They acknowledge in advance that it will be defeated. They are going to cut spending expected growth rates of spending by a grand total of $20 billion, which works out to .04 percent (yes, that’s right, it’s not even 5 percent of 1 percent of the budget.) And spending continues to increase.

    They are borrowing over 40 cents of every dollar they spend (yes, that’s 40%. A full 40%, not .04 percent. Decimals matter very much.) Yet somehow or another WE are the unrealistic ones?!? WE are the ones who are living in a fantasy land?!?

    Some years back, when GWB was trying to reform Social Security, I watched a Senator (I think he was from Connecticut) say that yes, SS was going to be bankrupt in 20 years, but he wasn’t going to be in Congress anymore, so of course he wasn’t going to support its reform.

    That’s what I see going on now. These guys think that a 10 year plan will buy them time, so they kicked the can. Well, one of these days, the can is going to hit the wall, and I hope it’s full of Kennepack and it blows right back in their [redacted] faces. It’s what they deserve.

    And mind you, I’m not talking about the Freshmen “Tea Party” members. I’m talking about every [redacted] one of them. Every [redacted] one of them, incumbents and insurgents, ran as fiscal conservatives, from Jeff Flake and John Boehner to Chip Cravaack and Billy Long, from Dan Boren and Debbie Two Names to JoAnn Emerson and Shiela Jackson Lee, from Claire McCaskill and Harry Reid to Marco Rubio and Rand Paul, all the way to Barack Obama.

    Anyone who isn’t up there slamming the door shut on the Treasury like the building is on fire is living a lie.

    I don’t want to hear any more about how reality is that this is the best we can do. Reality is that “this” is just another ten steps down the road to insolvency and Greece.

    • I’m with you Queen. Even though I’ve participated in TEA Party protests locally, there really is no “TEA Party Movement” beyond the local groups. There are actually three TEA Party/Patriot groups in my area, (San Francisco East Bay Area fer G-ds’ sake!). They don’t interact or coordinate in any way.

      The angst that allows such groups to form is the key here. That’s not going away no matter how the MSM slanderizes or belittles individual groups/actions/persons.

      I have joined the GOP as an elected Committee Member and continue to point out to non-member TEA Party types that this is what’s needed going forward. Some listen, some don’t, but the momentum is building.

  4. NO, Haystack. I’m just an average voter who is sick to the gills of the games that politicians play and the status quo in DC. Our people are hurting too badly. How much more of this BS should we take for the sake of “being reasonable” before it ends up breaking our spirit?

    And it’s really ironic that you bring this up today, because I just read three articles this morning from typical leftists stating that Repubs may actually be on the verge of pulling off one of the biggest coups that’s existed in this nation’s history. Would that be case if we had conformed to the expectations of those who condescendingly refer to us as “hobbits” and tell us to “get our a@@e@ in line”? Not a chance. It’s because conservatives stood their ground, plain and simple.

    We’re the best hope of this nation has of turning things around. He!!, we may be the ONLY hope this nation has.

    But there’s more to it than just that for me. I got a bad report from a doctor. We’ll just have to see how things go. But what time I have left isn’t going to spent kow-towing and bowing down to a bunch of hypocrites who are determined to run this nation into the ground, you can count on that.

      • Thank you, Queen and RH

        I wouldn’t have brought it up at all, because I don’t like being the object of sympathy and there’s still a way to go yet before the outcome is determined, so to speak, but…when you get that kind of news, even it just turns out to be a scare and nothing more than a scare, and it starts hitting home how short life really is, how fragile and precious is it…so much of what goes on in politics is a bunch of meaningless BS if it doesn’t get down to the nitty gritty of OUR people. They are THE backbone of OUR nation. Without their spirit and drive, without their hope and confidence, without their dreams and their hopes, this is just a chunk of land like any other chunk of land.

        Who do these politicians up there in their lofty offices they are to take this for granted? They mean next to nothing in comparison to the everyday ordinary citizen who goes to work day in and day out, paying their bills, facing all these challenges, trying to provide a life for their children!

        Yeah…sorry for the rant, but this isn’t the time to pussy-foot around. This is the time to get things done. Don’t take time granted!!!

        • Well, it is really support. You are a courageous and fine young woman who has the respect of many if not all the peeps who visit here. So I really thank you for sharing what is going on, as Mac said, let us know if you need anything.

  5. You’ve been reading my mail, ‘Stack. How is it again we disagree? As Marx and Bakunin disgareed? Or Lenin and Mao?

    I do think you paint the “Tea Party” with too broad a brushstroke, as Big Tea Party, such as TPN, quoted here, pretend to speak for millions of unaffiliated small-town citizens who, I pray, will continue to go it alone, continue to grow in numbers, and prosoer as a pissed off a citizenry, and ignore these pompous asses who presume greatness. TPN, et al, yes, I’d like to see them file as Third Party(ies) and count the fifteen or so souls who will sign up.

    The GOP members in the House still only respond for the most part to to their own constituents. AS we’ve seen from some we’re closer to, they were being damned before they were even sworn in.

    The Tea party you speak of can indeed take a leap over the cliff. They won’t even be missed.

  6. When speaking of the TEA Party you are speaking of a Movement and those who are on FOX or who have the biggest email lists do no a TEA Party Movement make, they are just the ones who are making money off of it, I don’t listen to them nor follow them, I follow myself in the mold of conservatism!

  7. First to what matters most in this thread: Lineholder…may God’s mercy and the Virgin Mother’s grace be with you, and guide you, and bring you comfort and peace through the days that lie ahead for you.

    BobM? You should know by now that I prefer being in the crosshairs…it’s what they pay me to do around here…

    Queenie & Hooah, as much as I love you two dearly, I’m having a hard time squaring this:

    One, the Tea Party doesn’t exist. There are different noisy groups of people saying that they are the Tea Party, but there is no such thing. There is no national Tea Party. There is no regional Tea Party. There is no registered Tea Party.

    With this:

    Of course the left has used the tea party as a distraction. I believe when they are kicking the conservative as “the American Taliban”, that is actually progress compared to when they used to do the exact same thing with GOP moderates. There are some bad actors, but if you look around the voices are pretty much all the same as they have been – the only difference is the media can’t ignore the voting block so they must marginalize it.

    Like it or not…and there may be “two” Tea parties – the national sentiment and the physical groups of people – resistance to Liberal incursion on our freedoms and liberties is being defined for us in the media and from the Left by the “group” not the sentiment.

    Yes, Red, I am talking the group…not the individuals that espouse the political positions.

    Look folks-if I didn’t write this piece, and ruffle a few feathers, then when would the conversation ever come up? We are being represented, in the eyes of the media and our political opponents, by the “group” of people that have taken our sentiments and made themselves our spokespeople…without our permission.

    However much any of you might agree with some of what they have said or done, they are not helping the cause we all think we are fighting for. I don’t back off the statement I made in the original piece; we got as good as we’re going to get THIS GO ROUND given the math – however inconvenient it might be – of not having the Senate. Should we have let the Government shut down unless and until they gave us CC&B or the Ryan plan? Absolutely.

    I have been a shut down advocate from day one…I want anarchy. But the reality is I am in the minority…and so is both the “Tea party” AND the “Tea Party” sentiment in the halls of Congress. As my tattoo says…it is what it is.

    We don’t get SOMETHING out of the GOP on this issue, and I promise you, we’ll lose the House, will NOT take the Senate, and will ABSOLUTELY see Obama re-elected…and we’ll all be asking ourselves what the hell happened.

    Vassar…you may be reading MY email rather than me reading yours, my friend…I will continue to insist that so long as we’re stuck with a two party system…and lean R because the L’s are a bunch of lunatics…we’re going to HAVE to form coalitions and agree to compromises.

    Sorry BobM-we disagree on one major piece of your initial hypothesis…we absolutely DID discuss Democracy, and we absolutely DID form coalitions…derived from the factions that hit the room when the Constitution was written. Back then there was the common cause of being free from the King’s tyranny…but there is no way there would EVER have been agreement on just what they were all going to DO with themselves once they declared independence without having had to make a great many compromises.

    We sent 80 new people into a sea of over 500. Anyone that thought that would end the discussion about who was in charge, and who called the shots, were grossly mistaken. This is only going to get better when Conservatism rules both Houses…and as a GOP h8r, I’ll only say that they are as close as I’m going to get to Conservatism so I have no choice but to compromise my principles each and every damn time I pull the lever.

    That advice would be well-heeded in this discussion as well. It took many years to make things this bad-Bush owns some of this himself-and it surely doesn’t get fixed in one cycle with 80 new guys…and firing them for falling short of expectations from a group that isn’t even a “group” but is a “national sentiment” that a lot of people share is not going to expedite matters nor fix the larger problem.

    < /2 cents>

    • That was considerably more than 2 cents, Haystack. You addressed not only the subject at hand but all the ones who disagreed with you en masse. Well done.

      For myself, I’m an anarchist, too, so I have no axe to grind with Haystack. What I will say is that I’m just as fed up with the TeaParty Folks at this point as I am with any other group involved in this situation. I have had to advise my parents, both in their 80’s, to go get some cash out of the bank, just to be on the safe side. Both were alive, although very young, when FDR closed the banks in the Depression. My mother was horrified that it might happen again.

      Thanks, every single political entity who made this possible and who made my advice to my elderly parents necessary. And screw you to the wall with great big sharp screws, too. That means the POTUS, the Congress, and the TP’s too. They all have played a role in this debacle.

    • I’ll be the first in sending some feedback on this Haystack. First of all, thanks for your concern. And just so everyone knows, I’ll be in and out for a few weeks. If things go well, I’ll be around longer than that.

      Haystack, building a strong coalition would involve mutual respect, trust and confidence. The door has to swing both ways, not just one. This can’t all be laid at the door of conservatives or TEA Party people when establishment Repubs would love to undermine conservatives in any way they can. They’ve been shooting to discredit DeMint for years, in just about every way that they can. So I really don’t understand how you see a coalition as being possible if it isn’t going to be mutual. And if isn’t, then why compromise?

      One of the things included in the Constitutional documents was pledge…”we pledge our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor”. Conservatives could probably make that pledge. If establishment Repubs won’t, then the coalition comes to nothing and compromise is meaningless.

    • Oh, I understand the founders *discussed* democracy, etc. but what resulted was a Republic, And while ‘parties’ were not mentioned in the document, we now have…how many? D’s, R’s L’,Socialists, Greens which may be seated as such. Sure there are factions and coalitions within the parties. The problem I see are the factions and coalitions *reaching across the aisle* of *moderates* in furtherance of creeping socialism. As you say, it is what it is, and we will have to take what we get. But who is it you want to shut up? Dick Armey? Michelle Bachmann? Sarah Palin? Rick Perry is gaining momentum and the media portrayed him as a secessionist for a while. You want him to shut up? You say you want anarchy and then you worry about being painted by the media in one way or another. Why worry? 🙂

      • Whoa there cowboy 🙂

        I don’t worry about the media painting me any color they want. Here at UP, and in most places across the rightosphere, everyone wants to save the GOP…wants to invest in IT as the place to foster a rebirth of Conservatism because it once, allegedly, was the warm and snuggly home of the ideology. I disagree…in very strong terms…that the GOP will ever become “Conservative” because it is not in their best interests – electorally – to do so. This is because, by and large, Conservatism has been helped to a slow-bleed death by the opposition and the media, and any self-respecting political opportunist is going to want to keep “Conservatism” within the GOP to a manageably dull roar. but that is my opinion alone, and I admit to being cyncial as a man my age can possibly be.

        I don’t know where I said I wanted to shut anybody up Bob…but honestly I wish Dick Armey would go back into a well-deserved retirement…as to all those ‘gaining momentum” I only ask this: momentum with whom? the Tea Party that doesn’t exist? Or the tea party sentiment that has very little “nationwide” control over who is in office and what they do once they get there?

    • HS, we cannot address this:

      Like it or not…and there may be “two” Tea parties – the national sentiment and the physical groups of people – resistance to Liberal incursion on our freedoms and liberties is being defined for us in the media and from the Left by the “group” not the sentiment.

      If we formed a true and honest third party (pretending like the Libertarians and Greenies don’t exist – because they may as well not) and the party was hugely popular and successful, if Mother Teresa came back from the grave and led us with Jesus Christ as our spokesman and Geo. Patton as our warrior, the media would demonize us.

      The people who say they are fiscons have *got* to draw a line in the sand and that line cannot be in spending cuts 5 years out.

      And as I said before, I am not talking about our freshmen, they don’t have nearly as much power as our old mules in office. I am talking about every one of them who promised fiscal sanity when they ran for office. And you’re nuts if you think I’m restricting my phone calls to Roy Blunt (freshman in the Senate) or Billy Long (freshman in the House), I’ve been calling Claire McCaskill on her false promises regularly and I will continue to do so.

      It won’t do any good, but she’s up in ’12 and I like to make them sweat.

      • Now HERE, my dear, we completely agree.

        All politics is local-no matter what we do or how much (or succinctly) we bitch…all we can PHYSICALLY do is pull the correct lever and get everyone we know or can make listen to us to pull the same ones.

  8. Were it not for the Tea Party, we would not be having this conversation because there would not be a GOP majority in the House. Were it not for the Tea Party, hundreds of thousands of voters would be disengaged from the process. Were it not for the Tea Party, there would not be new precinct committee members all over the country.

    The Tea Party never was about deals, or image, or publicity. It is about doing the right thing, no matter what the consequences. It is the bright light of ideological purity and common sense, not the gray of compromise.

    The Tea Party is a like compass – you can choose to go in the proper direction, or you can choose to go somewhere else, but the last thing you should do is blame the compass.

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