A listing of events on the umbrella group Trea Party Patriots’ website for Monday and Friday showed a total of 145 events — the same listing shows 638 events on tax day 2010.
From The Party’s Over?
Can we stop pretending the Tea Party movement is something other than the republican base with funny hats?
If the Tea Party can support military action where there isn’t even a smidgen of national interest involved, they are neocons in libertarian clothing. Just as one suspects they are Christianists in fiscal clothing. They are the hard right of the GOP.
From The Tea Party Goes To War
Sounds about right.
Surprisingly, however, even 67 percent of self-identified Tea Partiers said they would rather raise the tax cap than cuts benefits and hike the retirement age:
It’s only socialism when government helps other people.
The Tea Partyers’ fiery hatred of redistribution and resentment of societal “leeches” is certainly real, but it’s apparent at this late date that most self-identified Tea Party supporters are libertarians in sound bite form only, and certainly no supporters of “liberty” as broadly defined by Reason magazine and the Cato Institute. The Tea Parties believe “liberty” means “not being governed by Democrats” – a sentiment most libertarians would probably agree with – but they don’t seem to get the whole “live and let live” part of the deal.
Andrew Sullivan documented two examples of Tea Party illiberalism earlier this week. First of all, polling reveals that support for gay marriage is lower among Tea Partyers than among almost any group besides “conservative Republicans.” Fifty-two percent of Tea Partyers don’t support gay marriage or civil unions. That is not really the position of actual libertarian-leaning Republicans, let alone freewheeling libertarians.
If ending the disastrous, expensive, immoral and racist drug war gets booed at a Tea Party rally in liberty-loving New Mexico, there is absolutely nothing remotely libertarian about the movement besides a visceral hatred of taxes and the conviction that undeserving Others are benefiting from them.
If the goal of both the Tea Parties and most D.C. libertarian institutions is simply to get Republicans elected, then no harm, no foul. If that’s the case, the libertarians are almost embracing a traditional Republican tactic: ride into Washington with the support of the angry reactionaries, then govern on behalf of the money.
From Tea Partyers don’t actually care about “liberty” – War Room – Salon.com
This is the most common form of Libertarianism, what I call Bullshit-Libertarianism. A belief in government big enough to help me but too small to help you and an opposition to socialism that is defined as when government helps someone else.
I didn’t like Bill Clinton: thought he had sold access to the Lincoln Bedroom and lied under oath about sexual harassment and possibly even bombed Sudan on a “wag the dog” basis. But when I sometimes agreed to go on the radio stations of the paranoid right, it was only to be told that this was all irrelevant. Didn’t I understand that Clinton and his wife had murdered Vince Foster and were, even as I spoke, preparing to take advantage of the Y2K millennium crisis—remember that?—in order to seize power for life and become the Nicolae and Elena Ceauşescu of our day? These people were not interested in the president’s actual transgressions. They were looking to populate their fantasy world with new and more lurid characters.
From Tea’d Off | Politics | Vanity Fair
Hitch points out what the tea party looked like in the 1990s.
You have people here who enjoy their existing low density lifestyles, they like the fact that said lifestyles are explicitly and implicitly subsidized through a variety of public policy measures, and they don’t like the idea of losing those subsidies. What’s more, they regard their antagonists as somewhat culturally alien. So they’re pissed off. The fact that a small government approach to land use would in fact lead to denser lifestyles, more bus commuting, and smaller homes is of absolutely zero interest to them.
From Yglesias » The Land Market
But those subsidies that allow for their life-style aren’t socialism. It’s only socialism when government helps other people. When it helps them, it’s freedom.
Can we borrow a page from the tea party and start referring to the corporate subsidies and tax breaks to the energy, defense and agribusiness firms as bailouts? And any no-bid or closed-door contract as a take-over? And any new program or spending as socialism?
I realize that this is a cynical way of doing it, but why not take this tactic to make the words meaningless?
Bachmann seeks a House leadership position. Specifically, she wants to be the chairwoman of the House Republican Conference – the fourth-ranking Republican leadership post in the House, and a position once held by John Boehner, Dick Cheney, and Jack Kemp. There’s just one slight problem: She’s a prominent national Republican solely because she says insane things on television, not because of her leadership skills or policy chops.
From House Republicans sabotaging Michele Bachmann’s dreams – War Room – Salon.com
What if the deadlock is between the Tea party and the GOP and not the GOP and the Dems? Then what? Would the GOP do an end-run around the Tea Party and work with the Dems and compromise? Will that lead to more Tea Party challenges in 2012?
The great irony here is that the Volcker rule was the Obama administration’s direct response to the upset election of Republican Scott Brown in Massachusetts. Brown capitalized on anger against the bank bailout in his successful campaign, and the White House correctly realized it needed a course correction that signaled a stronger line against the banks. The beauty of the American political process is that Obama’s failure to get tough enough against the banks ensured that Republicans determined to weaken bank reform are now in power.
From Republicans begin carving up bank reform – How the World Works – Salon.com
So…how long until the Tea Party folks catch on? I’m guessing the anger will have to wait until the election.