Say what?

Via Althouse, here’s a snippet from a letter by Jim Messina, Campaign Manager for Obama for America re Iowa:

The extremist Tea Party agenda won a clear victory. No matter who the Republicans nominate, we’ll be running against someone who has embraced that agenda in order to win — vowing to let Wall Street write its own rules, end Medicare as we know it, roll back gay rights, leave the troops in Iraq indefinitely, restrict a woman’s right to choose, and gut Social Security to pay for more tax cuts for millionaires and corporations.


I’ve been paying attention to the Tea Party since it first emerged from the astroturf laboratory of Dick Armey. Even before it turned into a grassroots coalition and ran amok, it has never been about abortion, gay rights or Iraq.

I got this from the Tea Party Express website:

The Tea Party Express is proud to stand for six simple principles

No more bailouts
Reduce the size and intrusiveness of government
Stop raising our taxes
Repeal Obamacare
Cease out-of-control spending
Bring back American prosperity


Tea Party Patriots:

Tea Party Patriots does not have a foreign policy. We have three core principles: fiscal responsibility, constitutionally limited government, and free market solutions.


That’s two of the largest Tea Party organizations. There are several major groups and lots more little ones. Nobody speaks for all of them, but the common thread among them all is the idea of smaller government and lower taxes.

The Tea Partiers don’t like Wall Street, and they want government to keep its hands off of Social Security and Medicare. The Tea Party members are mostly conservative Republicans and independents, which means they tend to support conservative positions on issues like abortion and gay rights. But those are not Tea Party issues.

I’m not a Tea Partier. I’ve never had any interest in joining up or participating with any or the TP groups. That’s because I disagree with them on almost every issue.

On the other hand, I respect their right to assemble and petition for redress of grievances, and I admire their effectiveness. I don’t think Tea Partiers are evil, bad, stupid, ignorant or racist. They are generally good people who have DIFFERENT beliefs, and they have just as much right to them as we do to ours.

Here’s what so many people fail to grasp:

In a democratic system, when bad laws are passed (or good laws repealed) IT IS NOT THE END OF THE WORLD!

Let’s say the Republicans managed to end Social Security. What would happen?

Within a very short time they would either reinstate it or replace it with something similar. If they didn’t they would be replaced in the next election by people who would.

Our history shows that sooner or later the party in power will be out of power and vice versa. In my lifetime there have been eleven different presidents and control of the White House has changed hands between the parties six times. In 1992 the Democrats had the White House and both houses of Congress. In 2002 the Republicans held full control. In 2008 the Democrats were in charge again. For most of my life the parties have shared power with one holding the White House and the other holding Congress.

Somehow we’ve managed to survive.



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13 Responses to Say what?

  1. crawdad says:

    You had to go and get your Beckistani freak on again, huh?

  2. DeniseVB says:

    Meanwhile back at WTF headquarters….

    http://www.whitehousedossier.com/2012/01/04/obama-defy-senate-appoint-cordray/

    President Obama will ignore Senate objections and appoint Richard Cordray to lead the newly created Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, according to the Associated Press.

    Obama will make the appointment even though Republicans have blocked it and the Senate is technically in session.

    But the White House has concluded that the “pro forma” session is merely a ruse to keep him from making recess appointments, and that for all practical purposes the Senate is in recess.

    The move is certain to create a firestorm – an possibly a court challenge – over the standards governing the separation of powers. It’s the latest demonstration of Obama’s resolve to ignore Congress as much as possible and govern by executive authority.

    BO’s own party started the pro forma sessions to keep Bush in check during recesses. Funny that the Dem Senate is doing it to him too 😉

  3. DeniseVB says:

    As for the tea party, our local group is gearing up for their Richmond, Va visits with the delegates. These people will either drive the 3 hour round trip, or pay $20 to take the van and pay for their own lunches.

    Their recent newsletter highlights, in depth, the issues they will/won’t be supporting, and it’s all fiscally related. Here’s their “extremist” bottom line…..

    Bills we support:

    HB 27 and HB 92 – Because they protect our property rights in Virginia

    Bills we oppose:

    HB 69 and HB 70 – Because they force utility companies to engage in cap and trade initiatives and to conform to unrealistic energy standards imposed by agencies using unsubstantiated global warming statistics which will necessarily make energy rates skyrocket…

    I’m on everyone’s email list, I am informed 😉

    • yttik says:

      LOL, I’m on everybody’s list, too. Occupy and the tea party.

      I had to laugh this morning though, I was trying to enjoy my coffee when Rick Santorum sent me an “urgent message.” I wasn’t expecting that and nearly shot coffee up my nose.

  4. driguana says:

    You say: “That’s because I disagree with them (The Tea Party) on almost every issue”
    Do you disagree with: fiscal responsibility; constitutionally limited government; and free market solutions?
    Personally, I find those three principles absolutley essential for getting this country moving back in the right direction, regardless of what political party is in control. What do you find objectionable to those three ideas?

    • DandyTiger says:

      Of course not many would object to those phrases. The issue is what’s really behind them, what policies are we talking about. Once you get into the minutia, you get into some big substantial disagreements.

      For example, by free market solutions, do you mean doing away with the government run military? If not, why not. It’s socialism. It’s a large government system run for our benefit, but why not outsource all of that to private industry?

      The same arguments are out there for education and healthcare and basic infrastructure like roads among others. There are some activities that are best done by and for the people, for our benefit, and run for all of us, leveraging us as a group for better buying power and control. That’s the approach of a mixed economic system like ours, where some things are government run, sort of socialist in a way, and some mechanisms are left for commercial solutions. Some things we need, many would argue, shouldn’t be competition, free market based, like the military, like education, like healthcare.

      Related to “free market” is the issue of regulation. How much regulation. Do we want to do away with requirements for seat belts, 5mph bumpers, safety codes in the workplace, safety regulations for some products? How much regulation and where?

      So there are some really big differences. Many disagree about those very issues. Hence political and policy arguments and, well, voting.

      • driguana says:

        Yes, thanks…and that begs the other big question, what is the role of the federal government?… and, thus, we wend our way back to “constitutionally limited government”…what does that mean?

        Seems like one of our nation’s big problems is consistency. A problem brought on, in part, by voting. The system goes one way for awhile and then back in another direction, depending on the vote.

        And then, the other big question is begged….what is the role of State and Local government?

        It is an interesting time in our history and there is the potential for a truly great leader to emerge who actually could deal with all of the divisivenss and differences of opinion….unfortunately, I personally don’t see that person in the present mix. It is clearly not Obama.

        • Three Wickets says:

          Depends how you understand these headings. Fiscal responsiblity can mean national economics always works like household economics, and the national debt is our most pressing economic issue today, regardless of the fact that real Treasury yields today are negative (zero market concern about national debt) and nominal treasury yields are near zero (little to no market concern about core inflation). People and companies who have money are hoarding cash. In the near term, the private sector and public sector cannot deleverage at the same time. The economy will go into another stall. But that’s just my point of view. Is your pov that more austerity is what will revive this economy?

          Constitutionally limited government. Is that like Rick Perry’s Texas, all about states rights. Or is it again more about federal deficits and debt. Or maybe about Ron Paul’s cooky vision of hands off everything and pretend we live in the 19th century. Personally I have many opinions about the appropriate role of the federal government, but this general headline “constitutionally limited government” is a nice sweeping slogan that doesn’t promise or commit to specific policy. Republicans always talk about small government, then revert to big government when they are in office.

          Free market solutions. As opposed to what, socialism?

        • Three Wickets says:

          Tea Party Patriots does not have a foreign policy.

          Any view on domestic economic policy that doesn’t recognize its close connection to foreign policy and the global economy is not meaningful imho.

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