Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Tea For None

Disclaimer: I’m going to get political.
One of the more compelling developments in recent politics is the rise of the Tea Party movement. Apparently this is a grass roots movement of fed-up, overtaxed individuals sick of government waste. Well, at least that’s how they describe themselves. Others would call them xenophobic, unrealistic whiners.
I prefer to call them posers.
Why? Simple. Their angst only started after the 2008 presidential election, when a guy they didn’t support - for whatever reasons up to and including his skin color - won. Realizing in this day and age that abject racism is not tolerated, they had to come up with a more creative way to show their disdain for a decision that an overwhelming majority of Americans made at the polling booth. Fifty-three percent of the popular vote and over 300 electoral votes be damned - they wanted their country back!
Well, there’s their first mistake. It was never taken from them. They simply got out-voted. As a result of this, their subsequent actions must be tempered by their denial of the basic bedrock fact of our country - the person with the most votes wins. Every time. Since 1776.
But this isn’t about that.
What this is about is their abject hypocrisy. To recap, they’re mad as hell over being over-taxed. Okay. So exactly what did Obama do to cause this anger? What taxes did he raise? Hey, my paycheck didn’t shrink after he was elected. In fact, Obama reduced taxes after taking office. So I basically do not understand their core premise.
Well actually I do. Because it is a smokescreen for their real issue.
Their next argument is runaway government spending. Okay. So where were they when Bush invaded Afghanistan and Iraq without raising the necessary taxes to fund those excursions? Or when he provided a giveaway to drug companies with an unfunded prescription drug program? Or when he took a budget surplus left to him from the Clinton Administration and turned it into a massive deficit? Where was their screaming then?
It didn’t exist. Because they didn’t exist. It was created after a guy they didn’t like won an election.
Look, I understand. Politicians spend money. But the key word there is politicians - not just Democrats. As close as I can tell the main difference between the parties is Democrats spend money they have and Republican spend money they don’t have. Disagree? Then re-read my paragraph above regarding what Bush spent money on that we didn’t have. And also explain how Clinton ended his term with a surplus. I can hear the comeback now - 'Obama spent a trillion that we didn't have on a stimulus package!' Well, true. Because he subscribes to the Keynesian theory of economics that states that investment in infrastructure employs people and spurs economic development. It was his way of getting the country ouf of the deep recession he found us in when he took office.
Now I do agree with the Tea Party’s contention that Washington spends too much money - it can and certainly should go on a fiscal diet. So with this basic understanding, the debate now shifts to what to cut. And that is an entirely separate discussion that I choose not to get into at this time. Just a teaser - defense spending needs to be on the table in that discussion.
But anyway. Back to the main point I am making here. The Tea Posers. This supposed altruistic group of patriots that thinks this country is going to hell in a hand basket. It is time to call them out for what they really are.
Sore losers. With a side of racism.

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