20 October 2010

What can undo the Tea Party in the US?

When the positive push for less government gets tainted and polluted by idiots like this.

Let's be clear, the Tea Party movement has core values and principles that are undoubtedly libertarian and pro-freedom.  In and of itself it promotes small government, free markets and fiscal responsibility.    The fact that some Republicans have actually taken it upon themselves to embrace what are the core values and principles of the United States of America is positive.   It is frightening the silver spoon socialists like Nancy Pelosi, who hasn't seen a problem she didn't want the government to fix.

It has perplexed President Obama who is astonished that only two years after he won off the back of a euphoria of incredibly vacuousness ("change" I'll give you "change") he isn't getting "credit" for introducing compulsory health insurance, bailing out failed banks and automotive manufacturers and spending billions of dollars that are not being raised in taxes.

The Democrats are lost between being amazed that so many Americans are embracing the small government message, disappointed that Barack Obama has not parted the sea, healed the sick, rebuilt the economy and "changed" everything for the better, so have resorted to accusing the Tea Party Movement of racism (the cheap instant slur thrown about with such abandon that it demeans those who fought true racism).

So it is an opportunity, yet it is one that is so readily squandered in the hands of Christian conservatives who seek to use the state to promote or enforce their own beliefs.

There is no majority in the United States of Christians who want the Federal Government to promote religion in schools, to regulate behaviour between consenting adults or restrict freedom of speech.   Indeed those like O'Connell who dare to question whether the United States is a secular liberal democracy will do far more damage to the Tea Party Movement than anything else.

For the "wingnut" religious right in the US will vote Republican in any case, but by associating the Tea Party Movement with religion it alienates swinging voters who find religious fundamentalism distasteful, but who agree with small government, free markets and fiscal responsibility.

Yes some imbecilic parents want their children to be taught that the pseudo-science of creationism is "as valid" scientifically as evolution.  The appropriate answer to that is to privatise education, so that schools can set themselves up as they wish and teach as they wish, so the state is not involved.   The answer is not to confuse beliefs in the supernatural with the state.

It is why the likes of Sarah Palin can not be the Presidential candidate for the Republicans in 2012.  She does not consistently believe in small government (she believes in the war on drugs for starters,and she has lobbied for earmarked pork funding from the Federal Government for Alaska) and she cannot help but get tied up in linking religion to public policy (by claiming war in Iraq was part of "god's plan").  

The Tea Party can be a great force for good, but it will be undone only by two types of people, the religious right who want it to be a proxy for an agenda that is anything BUT about reducing the size the government, (and so frightening off moderate Christians, and non-Christians to the Democrats or not voting at all) and (more likely) the sleazy, pork barrel carrying, power hungry statists who have dominated the Republican Party for decades.

Sarah Palin is in both camps, she finds it difficult to separate her religion from her publicly expressed political views and has also shown herself to be part of the establishment (as well as being far from bright).

I am wishing the Tea Party the very best in the mid-terms, if only because it will send a message to the Republican Party, and because the Democrats will have no way of confronting it other than attack (how can they embrace a movement that runs contrary to all they say and do).  However, it cannot and should not be a hostage to imbecility or those for whom the phrase "Christian theocracy" doesn't send chills down their spines.


KG said...

Your loathing of religion has warped your view of politics, especially American politics.
The vocal Christian fundamentalists are a very, very small minority and not especially significant in terms of votes.
You're helping the leftist MSM and the Dems by swallowing and then regurgitating the anti-Christian crap and exaggerations the Marxists and Alynskyites have used so effectively.
If you think ordinary, conservative Christians are the enemies of freedom, boy do you have a surprise coming...

Libertyscott said...

KG you miss my point.

The Tea Party can't win if it gets associated and dominated by those types because it alienates too many Americans. The Tea Party in and of itself is great, but it just takes the sort of foolishness that McConnell and Palin slip into to make it seem a joke. I don't think ordinary conservative Christians are the problem, I think it is stupid fundamentalists that alienate ordinary socially liberal Christians (and others) that are the problem.

Let's leave abortion, creationism and all the rest to the states, it should not be a matter for the Federal Government.

Jeremy Harris said...

I think it was inevitable that those who oppose Obama would be painted as racists...

The best response I've found is to say, "It's just as racist to vote for someone because they're black than to vote against someone because they're black"...

Blair said...

I agree with KG. You are swallowing leftist crap about "Christianists". I hesitate to say that such people don't exist, but if they do, there's not many of them, and I certainly can't think of a single politician that I would describe that way.

Most conservative Republican politicians talk about faith because their voters are Christians and identify with it. But they do not normally have any moral authoritarian policies. Even Sarah Palin did nothing to restrict abortion in Alaska when she was Governor, and explicitly states in her autobiography that she would not want women arrested for having abortions.

Nobody has used moral authoritarian rhetoric in American politics since Dan Quayle tried to criticise Murphy Brown eighteen years ago. And whatever will was left after that to pursue such a line got well and truly killed off by Bob Dole's Presidential bid and Clinton's impeachment. It's a red herring.

You said:

Let's leave abortion, creationism and all the rest to the states, it should not be a matter for the Federal Government.

So you essentially agree with Christine O'Donnell then? That's actually all she advocates, and she believes children should be taught all proposed theories, not just one.

You are mistaking strong Christian faith, and attempts by politicians to have Christian voters identify with them, for political will to impose those beliefs on others, which I would say barely exists in the United States.

Having said all that, O'Donnell's lack of knowledge of the constitution beggars belief, and the Tea Party (which is, after all, a movement to restore the intent of the Constitution in US politics) should throw her under the bus, as she was never going to win Delaware anyway.


I think the issue is the Tea Party will have to be careful.
We know the lefty media will look for reasons to ridcule them.
Sadly, this puts the Teat Party and the Republican right at an unfair disadvantage.
The problem with O'Donnell was she was noted for her comments on masturbation.
She might have made them a long time ago but it made her look ridiculous in the extreme.
I note her comments since have been fine and her comments about her Catholic faith being more in tune with average American opinion was the right message.
Even so, for reasons of presentation, the Tea Party candidates will have to do best sticking to their knitting and focussing on tax and spend and the role of government.
Perhaps they might need better media advisors, to help them learn to choose their words and campaign messages more carefully.