Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Two Faces Of The Tea Party

by Matthew Continetti - June 28th, 2010 (Publication Date) - The Weekly Standard

As a student in the exciting new field of Tea Party Studies, I’ve noticed that no one agrees on what the Tea Party actually is. Is the anti-Obama, anti-big government movement simply AstroTurf fabricated by Dick Armey’s FreedomWorks? Is it a bunch of Birthers, Birchers, conspiracists, and white power misfits? Is it a strictly economic phenomenon—the inevitable result of high and persistent unemployment? Or are the Tea Partiers nothing more than indulgent Boomers who combine 1960s social libertarianism with 1980s laissez-faire economics? Does the Tea Party draw on longstanding American constitutional, political, and economic traditions, eddies of thought that one can trace back to James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, and Andrew Jackson? Or is it of a more recent vintage: Are the Tea Partiers simply the same folks who once were called Reagan Democrats and Perotistas?

It is clear that Continetti has zeroed in on some contradictions of the TEA Party Movement. On the other hand, I disagree with him that it can be deconstructed into two faces, with Rick Santelli representing the so called optimistic side and Glen Beck representing the pessimistic side. That makes a good premise for the article. It simply is not true.

The real question that needs to be answered - is it perception we are simultaneously at war with global socialism, La Razanism and Islamofascism or reality? Or conversely are some of the people on the political left simply making some minor mistakes in the way they govern or are they subverting freedom? If we really are at war with three movements that have permeated our society and are dedicated to its destruction we cannot tweak our way back to prosperity by slowing the move to leftist politics. Is there an American "progressive" movement aligned with foreign proponents who wish to see a world government with socialists on top? Is La Raza trying to take back a third of our nation by a slow invasion? Do the Islamofascists think they can dominate the world with their New Caliphate?

In criticizing Beck Continetti has made a bizarre case that Beck advocates abrogating our international commitments. What is curious is that Obama is currently cutting these commitments and charting a new course for our foreign policy while Beck is criticizing this. Continetti cannot make his case with such basic flaws in logic. He is, as Obama frequently does, creating a straw man of his own creation so that he can project it onto his opponent for ease in disparaging his target.

The failure of Continetti and the so-called cheerful wing of the TEA Party movement is that they have ignored the progressive subversion of our schools, the war against Christianity, the links to the global socialist movement among our intellectuals, the invasion and destruction of our borders by the La Razan movement, and the alignment of the left with the Islamofascist movement. Things are worse than they believe.

We are at war. Putting a happy face on the TEA Party Movement does not mean we are not at war. America is a happy place because we are free. We are not free because we are happy. As leftists make us less free we become less happy and more distrustful of government and the two political parties. The subversion of freedom is real and Continetti seems intellectually divorced from that reality.


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