The Tea Party has won. That seems pretty clear.
What began as a grass roots movement a couple of years ago has been transformed into an institutionalized political force that has set the agenda in Congress.
The agenda, of course, is cut the budget and reduce the size of government. Both political parties are now singing that song, and one party, the Republicans, seems to have ceded control to the Tea Party and its 85 or so members in the House. The Republicans can’t seem to do a thing without clearing it with the insurgent Tea Partiers.
And the Democrats? With a divided Congress, they can’t seem to get anything done, which leaves us where we are today: in a stalemate with a ridiculously dysfunctional government.
The irony is that both parties have adopted the Tea Party’s agenda–cut, cut, cut–but that’s apparently not enough. The Tea Party wants slashing, burning, and destruction of much of government, and if it takes bringing the government and our financial system to its knees, so be it. Such a result would only confirm what the extreme right wing has said all along–that government is inept.
One other irony here that simply defies logic: The Tea Partiers oppose an increase in ANY taxes, even on the millionaires and billionaires, the Wall Street gang, the hedge fund managers, the gigantic corporations making record profits.
And yet, if you talk to most of the Tea Partiers, you’ll find they’re not at all fond of those groups; in fact, they harbor a deep dislike and distrust of them. So why are they defending them and their right to rake in enormous incomes and profits?
There’s not really a good answer, except that they signed a pledge never to raise taxes on anyone, and they don’t want to violate that pledge. I can understand upholding a principle, but there’s also the business of governing a country, insuring stability, and making certain that your fellow citizens don’t get abused.
Seems to me the Tea Party has already won. Can’t they just declare victory so that we can get back to running our country?