Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Is the Tea Party my cup?

On the face of it I should be a tea partier.

Constitutional originalism, small government, low taxes, balanced budgets ... what's not to like?

Personalities. Tone. Single mindedness.

At it's grass roots core, I'm all there. When it's upset the establishment apple cart, again, I'm there. When it makes a stand for what is, in its view, right - yes, sir - all in.

And as a populist political movement, the tea party makes sense. But not it's candidates.

I don't care for the subtle hyprocrisy of the tea party endorsed candidates. Why would someone whose views inform them that government is bad then spend so much time and money to be part of government? To reduce their power and influence? To render meaningless all that ambition and work?

The superstars of the tea party movement are riding on the wave of a populist movement and like in any form of populism, the people lose. An elite few funnel the rage of the downtrodden many into personal gain and nothing changes but the names on the office door.

I fear that the tea party is no more and no less than the established parties - it is populated by candidates saying what needs to be said to get elected and stay elected. Power above all else. Winning a race, winning a vote and winning the news cycle being the object, not making America and Americans better.

In short, I think the people that make up the tea party are being duped by the candidates that they endorse and the big money operating behind the scenes.

And I think Deb Fischer is part of it. I think she's an extreme partisan that traded and withheld votes to get what she wanted. She played to win. Born and raised in Lincoln and returning there over and over again to go to school or to be in the Legislature, the story we are told is she's a rancher from Valentine. Her husband was a rancher from Valentine. She's a politician from Lincoln.

Deb Fischer is also the Republican candidate for Nebraska's open Senate seat. She rode the tea party movement to the doors of the Senate. Does she really care about Nebraskans? Does she really care about the future of this country? Or does she simply care about winning? I don't know.

My gut says I shouldn't like her. My gut says that anyone endorsed by Sarah Palin is instantly disqualified. My gut says it is all branding and marketing and I want no part of her or the tea party.


Next up, a look at "Core Beliefs" of one tea party group.

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