16 April 2009


Well, the big tea-party day has come and gone. Humor aside, how to assess this phenomenon? As I've noted before, there may be the germ of a conservative revival here, but to be considered a major movement, the tea parties need (1) bigger turnouts and (2) a much clearer articulation of what they are for and against. I have not yet seen an estimate of the overall nationwide participation from a neutral source (for obvious reasons, I don't trust estimates from sources which are clearly either pro- or anti-tea-party). Estimates for individual large cities seem to be in the 1,000-to-5,000 range, which would be consistent with 50,000 to 100,000 nationwide. We'll have to wait and see.

As for (2), the message seems to have settled on opposition to taxes and, to a lesser extent, to spending. This is a mainstream conservative viewpoint, but the timing is curious. The Democrats' proposed tax increases for the upper income brackets would still leave those tax rates substantially lower than they were under the administration of that notorious redistributionist pinko Commie, Ronald "hammer-and-sickle" Reagan. The huge scale of current government spending is mostly due to bailouts of the financial sector and efforts to stimulate the economy. It's true that the government has failed to demand enough accountability from the financial companies it is bailing out (or to curb outrages like the AIG bonuses), and that the stimulus plan is badly designed, but those details don't seem to be the focus of the protests.

Some other (pre-15-April) views: Think Progress (found via DemWit) sees astroturfing; Jon Henke rebuts the accusation. An Andrew Sullivan reader says the tea parties mirror the insularity and incoherence of the left in the late 1970s through early 1990s, while another defends them.

Note: light posting this week due to a condition causing severe right-hand finger-joint pain (nothing to worry about -- I know what it is and should be able to get treatment in a day or two).


Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

Heh,heh,heh....I think Ana summed it perfectly calling this a "mid-term strategy".It was alot of fun...but trinket's like teabag's,airguages,6-pack drinking pig's in drag aint gonna cut the mustard in this one...their just pulling rabbit's out of the hat right now while they have some time on their side to see what crap will work. Now I will be voting republican mostly locally here in Texas...but only because the dem's here are really gaining, at the rate their going,Texas can easily become a blue state within the next 4-5 year's...and they are pushing hard here for state income taxes(dem's)and even looser immigration policies than the rep's here, along with many other thing's that are going to put property and taxes higher across the board,plus the gun issue's their on here.Republican's made their own bed...they had thing's going for them....but started off on the wrong foot out of desperation without thinking thoroughly...they cant stand Obama? Actually Obama is the best thing that happened to them, they couldnt wait for him to take office...so they can shift blame from themselves for our mess to him. Now all they are trying to do is put the whole plate in front of him. But Bush was so bad he even screwed up the Texas GOP, now we are facing possibly a dem takeover here...taxation out the ass...regulation out the ass along with inflation. I can stomach the values crowd and the religious rant's out of the right(here) because it's all show. I mean...I've lived in Texas most of my life...I've alway's done what the hell I wanted and my friend's as well...it's illegal? I dont give a damn. I could care less what the church think's, or the government, or even those down the street. No real Texan will listen to those pansies on the right and their moralistic vision's, we will do what we please...go cry...we dont give a damn...run and whine to Jesus or something... goddamn pussies! Like I said...I cant stomach either side.

Back to those down the street, now since "W"(Bush) damn near lives in our neighborhood and is a civilian once again...what's he been doing? The same as usual..."nothing", he's been doing alot of jogging, to burn off calories from stuffing his face with chili-dog's and taco's... and going to the Rangers (baseball) games to throw first pitch or other lolligagging crap.

16 April, 2009 06:47  

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