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13 November 2010

Comments

Nancy Garcia

Thank you George for saying so much in five paragraphs and one short comment. While we all have a daunting task ahead of us, just the fact that things are indeed looking up, gives us more determination to correct our listing ship of state.

Russ Steele

George,

At NC Media Watch I have added a video of the 2 November 2010 flag planting ceremony showing the Tea Party Patriots reclaiming the Capitol for We the People.

Dixon Cruickshank

Nancy welcome aboard

George Rebane

Welcome indeed. FYI - Nancy Garcia is the Vice President of the Nevada County Tea Party Patriots.

Mike Sherman

George, that was a fine piece you wrote. I only wish I could be as optimistic. I’ve seen what happens to elected officials who arrive with ideals and principles, then fall into the abyss of Washington, D.C.

The next two years are going to be more interesting than the fall elections.

George Rebane

Thank you Mike. I agree with your "abyss" prognostication, but monitoring the politicians through a broad-based movement like the Tea Party has never been tried. It will depend on how well we can set up a distributed control system that involves the grass roots on a continual monitoring and reporting system which keeps track of and warn our representatives as they approach the abyss. It is up to us.

Nancy Garcia

Thank you for your warm welcome! Mike, your concern is real and George's comment on continual monitoring and reporting is critical. As Mark Meckler. co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots observed, "Our real work begins on November 3rd." From what we have seen post-election, Mark's statement is being taken seriously, It is indeed up to us!

Russ Steele

Nancy,

Thanks for joining the conversation. We need more Tea Party members and leaders to join the discussion of local, regional and national issues. We are often on the leading edge of issues, the tip of the spear in some cases. Please encourage your peers to join us in the blog-o-sphere.

Paul Emery

It will take a little time top see how well the Republican Party can digest the influx of a populist movement like the Tea Party. The Tea Party Express, which was run by long time Republican operatives such as Sal Russo will probably pack up and be reassigned by the Repub party with a pat on the back and a job well done in electing Republicans which was their sole purpose There's no doubt the Republicans are controlled by the same special interest groups as the Democrats. Unless the Tea Party takes on serious reform of the way big money controls government it will go down as another failed rebellion easily handled by the Washington establishment.

Todd Juvinall

So Paul, please explain to all of us how 25 million people can do what the Tea Party did from the grass roots so quickly. Please try not to do the lefty mantra about operatives and corporations.

Mikey McD

Paul, I agree. The problem with politics is all the politicians. I favored the Tea Party movement because of the disgrace to republican ideals which GW Bush turned out to be (Patriot Act, June 2008 housing bill, bailouts, general spending increases, etc). I think it is imperative for the Tea party to be tough on republicans. How sad would the movement be if it were 'bought' by the repubs (or dems). I found myself despising the Tea Party Express while being enamored with the Tea Party Patriots. I also believe that the movement needs to remain 'leaderless.' I will follow principals before I will follow a person (Palin is walking a fine line).

Paul Emery

Todd

First, there is no doubt that the Tea Party Express was created and controlled by longtime Republican operatives such as Sal Russo. This is so well documented that the burden is on you to prove otherwise. In my opinion the Tea Party in general is a Libertarian Light movement that taps into the anti government momentum created by Ron Paul in the last election (2008) People are desperate for hope and they had the right message for the time and it was well amplified by the appropriate media . From what I can tell the movement in general doesn't have the stomach for true Libertarian reform as demonstrated by their avoidance of taking a position on the Constitutionality of the Patriot Act or our foreign adventures in Iraq and Afghanistan for a start. Also I saw little support for Prop 19 which was a rather messy solution to heavy handed Federal control over States Rights. These are just a few examples.

So, from my perspective it will likely be absorbed by the Republican party which is controlled by the same influences as the Democrats. Talk is cheap. The price of action is colossal. I don't see the Republican Party turning it's back on it's long time supporters to cater to a very manageable populist movement.

Paul Emery

Late breaking development

I may be underestimating the Tea Party after all. The viewer response to Bristol Palens pedestrian performance on Dancing with the Stars tonight apparently overcame the mediocre scores by Judges to propel her to the next round of the competition. I'm sure they'll be investigations into this.....

http://www.kansascity.com/2010/11/16/2441989_bristol-palin-fans-ruin-dancing.html?storylink=omni_popular

Michael Anderson

Paul,

Great observations, and I agree with a lot of what you are saying here.

I am particularly concerned about Mark Meckler and company, and fear that they may be creating a cult of personality. I hope someone, anyone, can prove me wrong.

This 40-yr.-plan stuff is pretty goofy, since it's been tried before in history and found substantially wanting.

What I would really like to see is Meckler and Martin chiming in here at blogosphere central, rather than sending us one-way communications via YouTube.

Come on Mark, let's get physical. Can you blog with the best of us?

Michael A.

TJ

What's the "seventeen slogan ideology"? Is that something real or just a bit of poetic flourish?

George Rebane

Paul – many good observations to chew on, thanks. One thing not to mistake though is that the tea party movement represents a monolith ideology with a firm boundary. There are too many of us from too many walks of life to glue together that tightly. For example, I part company with the pure libertarians on foreign policy (as many RR readers have gathered from these pages). Also I believe that a stable society with a range (bell curve) of cognitive abilities will need an engineered wealth redistribution schema. This is now true in spades given the acceleration of technology and globalization. But the old statist progressive approach of unstable socialism that degenerates into totalitarianism is not the solution. Garrett Hardin attempted to teach us better approaches, and my suggestion of the non-profit public service corporation approach points in that direction.

But American progressives of both parties have finally taken us so far from the core values of American exceptionalism that enough people found it sufficiently easy to discover the fundamentals that they had in common – that they have always had in common. So it didn’t take much of a catalyst to coagulate a movement that will now attempt to recapture and reinstall these values into our public life. If it hadn’t been the ‘tea party rant’ from the CBOE floor, it would have been its moral equivalent from someplace else. The country was ready.

Now the really hard work starts of keeping the movement going and choate while maintaining its distributed structure and avoiding sellouts to established political parties. And so far that seems to be working. If a tea party faction (e.g. TP Express) wants to be co-opted by the Republicans, so be it. Most of us recognize that, wish them well, and let them go. But we don’t mistake that they are speaking for the rest of us. And if Mark Meckler or anyone else attempted to lead the TP Patriots to such an equivalent alliance, he would find himself quickly in a much smaller group. That is our strength, we don’t need to be that massive monolith following a strong leader.

The only thing that politicians have to understand is that they know we judge them by their ability to interpret and implement our core values when they govern us, and that we will be ruthless in voting in their successor if they have fooled us – one strike and you’re out. But again, this is just one tea partier talking.

TJ, the ‘seventeen slogan ideology’ is indeed a poetic flourish to express that most collectivists have a shallow knowledge base which can be so summarized. Therefore their common denominator is not to discuss the message but to ‘dis’ the messenger (the Alinsky gospel).

Mikey McD

Paul, just to be crystal clear the atrocities you cite (Iraq, Patriot Act, Prop 19- I would add bailouts, Bush's housing bill, Stimulus #1,#2..., FED monetizing our debt) are exactly the issues that enraged average (read apathetic 'never been politically active')Americans into action. Again, this is where a distinction between "Patriots" (tax paying liberty loving Americans of all persuasions) and "Express" (Republican Machine) is so very important.

If the TP movement can remain 'leaderless' then the movement has 40 years to plan for, if a leader is identified I give less than 3 years.

Dixon Cruickshank

This might clear some things up in this discussion

http://hotair.com/archives/2010/11/17/republicans-avoiding-appropriations-assignment-in-house/

Paul Emery

Dixon

When elected officials set a $100 max for campaign contributions I'll be impressed. The lobby money is still rolling in. The medical industries are expected to spend a Billion dollars this year to influence legislation. They don't spend that kind of money without a reasonable assurance it will swing votes in their favor.

Mikey
Thanks for the expansion of my argument. The list goes on and on.
It would be interesting to know how many new voters voted this month. AS an activist movement, the TP did a great get out the vote campaign.

George

Keeping the movement going is going to take more than slogans and rants by Fox entertainers to make a difference. The unwillingness of the TP to propose solutions will insure a quick exit from viability.

George Rebane

Paul - I doubt whether the TPP or any other such politically motivated grassroots movement is going to make any detailed public policy proposals (your "solutions"). We have gone over this before. The so far successful objective of the TP movement is to make clear their broad objectives, monitor politicians and support those that individual members judge to be adequate, and let the professional politicians come up with complying legislation. The TP movement in the large has never assigned itself to become a policy generating peer with the likes of Heritage, Cato, or Brookings.

This seems to be a real hard notion for people (mostly on the left) to understand. However, your prediction that the "unwillingness of the TP to propose solutions will insure a quick exit from viability" is duly noted, and will be tested very soon in the lead up to the upcoming main event in 2012.

Paul Emery

George

George

Pretty simple stuff here. Problems need solutions. So the TP bugles our problems can be solved by adhering to free markets, fiscal responsibility and strict constitutional adherence but doesn't participate in the process of designing the plan to get there. So who does? Elected officials? Government professionals. conservative think tanks, religious leaders, TV and radio political entertainers? Someone has to decide, for example precisely what programs need to be cut to balance the budget. What is a free market place? What regulations need to be changed or eliminated? What exactly need to happen to restore our Constitutional rights that allegedly are being trampled? What rights are we talking about anyway? Do you leave it up to Republican Party leadership to lead the way and create the plan. Who are the modern thinkers and philosophers that will lead the way to the promised land?

The French Revolution started as a peoples rebellion against the tyranny of the aristocracy and in three short years devolved to local councils sending chamber maids to the guillotine because they worked for minor officials in the deposed regime. Because they had no effective leadership the grand and glorious revolution soon became mob rule.

It's easy to get mass movements moving but they can quickly turn angry if they are not nurtured by effective leadership.

George Rebane

Paul, I answered your question already. Extremely detailed policies have been made for over two hundred years without the Tea Party, and more and more without regard to the principles the TP promotes. They will still be made by politicians who now know that there are millions out there keeping an eye on them at least as often as they watch 'Dancing with the Stars'.

As evidenced by your borderline histrionics, I do believe that you may be among those who do not understand what kind of awakening we are attempting here. Hell, we barely understand it ourselves today. Tomorrow we will understand it better, and the day after ... . But I will repeat myself in saying that your response bodes well for our chances to succeed in derailing the progressive agenda.

Dixon Cruickshank

Like I said before Paul - the lefts issue is its fighting a ghost - no policy issues that then can be attacked on specifics which the left so desperately wants. Its just a feeling, get Gov out of the way and the markets and competition will create growth like it always has for 200 yrs.

Build a better mouse trap and the world will beat a path to your door - nobody in any government ever said that.

Let there be mouse traps

Paul Emery

The main reason the Democrats lost in this election is because they failed to demonstrate effective and inspirational leadership in these difficult times. That is the same reason the Bush admin lost the farm just two years ago. We have a very fickle electorate that can turn on a dime if they lose faith. As long as special interests control our government nothing will change enough to make a difference. Historically governments have been the agents of the ruling class who have no interest in the welfare of the people. Occasionally you have a rebellion or movement that is easily handled in a short time by the powers that be. That's the way I see it. It has nothing to do with left or right, Democrat or Republican.

George Rebane

Unfortunately Paul, your last observation is probably right on the mark. And that ruling class may well be the nemesis of the TP movement. They sure know how to divert us with bread and circuses.

Todd Juvinall

Bush lost because a lot of conservatives stayed home. Review the turnout numbers. What happened to the democrats is no different. Many of their base, students, minorities, etc., stayed home. That is the nature of victory. Turnout. The R's stayed home because they were mad at Bush and the R's for being big spenders, the D's stayed home because they were lazy.

Paul Emery

That about sums it up. Combine that with the effective TP get out the vote campaign and you have the story. I don't think this election was a consensus mandate. Americans are pretty evenly split on most issues and Obama is far more popular than Bush in his last four years.

Dixon Cruickshank

Exit question: how many people that say they are TP supporters could even name Mark Meckler or even know who he is? I would bet less than 40% and maybe less than 20%.

I would not have a clue if he didn't live around there but I knew the TP, of course I'm speaking on a national basis

Mikey McD

Specific solutions exist (privatize education/increase education competition, reform SS [raise retirement ages, leave trust fund alone/no IOUs...], reform Medicare [require copays?, decrease fraud], reform health care by promoting competition [not gov care] and tort reform, campaign finance reform, etc etc).

Specifically, the TP was behind the failed CA proposition to make it illegal for public employee unions (SPECIAL INTEREST) to use tax payer funds for campaigns (Citizens Power Initiative- never made proposition status).

http://unplugthepoliticalmachine.ning.com/page/solution-1

Michael Anderson

I would like to know if any of the Tea Party organizations have an opinion on New Start. I would imagine that this subject at least falls under one category of the Tea Party triad, i.e. "fiscal responsibility."

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/18/opinion/18thu1.html?hp

Exit question: Do any or all of the Tea Party organizations share Mitch McConnell's goal of ensuring that Obama is a one-term president? And are they working to block New Start in order to achieve that goal?

George Rebane

Haven't heard New Start discussed in TP circles. But working for a one term Obama presidency is definitely on everyone's mind. New Start has major flaws in reciprocal inspections and one-sided limitations on missile defense. It can be opposed on its own demerits.

Michael Anderson

Thanks for your response George.

Not to get off topic here, but I think New Start bears some additional scrutiny so thanks for indulging me.

I can understand your issues with reciprocal inspections and that certainly needs to be addressed. But the one-sided limitations on missile defense seem to be organic, based on our side owning the bulk of that technology.

As you know, George, I'm an old MAD guy and I appreciate and accept balance of power. It concerns me when our missile defense technology trumps whatever the "opposition" (whatever that is) has. Frankly, there are people in the American defense community who I do not trust with absolute power.

That being said, the real high ground is space, as you know. Space-based lasers are the holy grail, and have been since the 1980s. I am much more interested in where are the Chinese/Russians/EU regarding space weapons, than anything having to do with MIRVs and other ancient bomber/Trident/missile technology.

Going from 2,200 active weapons to 1,500 seems like a no brainer. What am I missing?

George Rebane

You're on the mark with space-based lasers Michael. That was already a major part of Reagan's Star Wars. The Chinese are the ones to watch in this department. Stratfor's George Friedman has some serious predictions here.

The number of warheads has always been important because of fractional survivability when the other guy goes for first strike and/or the reliability of your system is less than you let on. MAD worked and will continue to do so as long as the participants judge both to have approximately par force. But all during the MAD era, both sides continued to attempt to get one up on the other to weaken the 'mutual' part of MAD. We were lucky that the USSR collapsed before one upmanship was successful. (The closest the world came to that was in the late 70s when we were standing down from Vietnam, and Brezhnev sensed that the USSR was heading into the 'now or never' phase.)

Michael Anderson

I agree that the Chinese are the ones to watch regarding the new high ground. They're our bankers, after all, which gives them additional motivation to make sure that we will be able to pay our bills )-:

I am not so convinced that if one side or another were to gain a momentary military superiority in the 21st century that they would take advantage. Things are too tied together now, which is an ancillary benefit of economic globalism.

The USSR collapsed and became extremely vulnerable in the early 1990s. Did we nuke them? No. Is that because we are morally superior? Again, no.

If America collapses, will Russia or China nuke us? No, that would be like setting fire to your local bank. Foolish. They want us to succeed, but not at their expense. Just like everyone nation, state, city and town across the globe.

Again, can any Tea Party organization support New Start? I still think it's a no-brainer.

Paul Emery

I'm sure that beings from other galaxies that ponder the question of MAD will conclude that there's no intelligent life on earth and that will soon be extinct.

George Rebane

Now Paul may be right because MAD does not guarantee survival of the parties, only that they puzzle on the problem and keep their eyes open before something may upset the whole applecart.

However Michael, you seem to be thinking of the old fashioned strategic wars where 'nuking' meant leaving radioactive desolation and ruin on the countryside. The kind of warfare today that can take down advanced nations requires none of that. Only a few explosions here and there, and the shifting of some bits on telecom links.

Paul Emery

Does anyone have any information on the so called static electricity devices that will wipe out all silicon chips in a given area? It seems I read somewhere that the US government keeps a system of tube transmitters and receivers in use just in case.

Dixon Cruickshank

I have a riveting question - will Bristol win and the cause and effects

Paul Emery

It will be a indicator of the influence of the TP for sure if she wins. By all estimations her dancing skills are similar to her mothers comprehension of complex political issues so a win could mean that Americans are ready for a half term Governor for President.

George Rebane

That was cold Paul (but consistent).

Dixon Cruickshank

Told ya George, like a big rainbow

Michael Anderson

George wrote: "Only a few explosions here and there, and the shifting of some bits on telecom links."

Sure, in the beginning. But do you really think that if China, Russia, the US or EU, found themselves at the losing end of such a limited battle that they wouldn't protract maximum pain on their enemies, even if in the long-term such actions were not in their best interests?

I can certainly foresee a scenario where limited nuclear exchanges would go on tit for tat for many months, if not years, based upon advantage gained or lost in a constantly changing planetary battlefield.

George Rebane

Michael, you may be right on such long term exchanges. I must admit that I have not contemplated them, and I have not run across anyone else in prognostics business doing so. It seems that such an extended nuking could create an 'On the Beach' future for us.

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