As all blog readers know I am a Conservative American that has strong passionate feelings in regards to politics. For years I pretended to be a moderate because I thought it sounded open-minded and fair. However, I began to notice that most of my views both morally and fiscally landed on the conservative side. (If you want to see a few areas I agree with President Obama check out this post) Finally after the 2008 election I decided to stop pretending and embrace my beliefs- not only embrace but fight for them. I was disgusted by the stimulus package, car company bailouts, government intrusion into our most personal choices, mounting debt, imminent deflation of the dollar, the massive health care bill, and declining moral values.
Then came the tea party rallies, which gave me the chance to protest these policies. I don’t think I have ever felt as patriotic or as proud to have freedom of speech then when I carried my sign in the tea party rally. It was a great moment in my life. (btw, why does it seem like protesters on the left are characterized as bold, courageous, and patriotic but the right are described as radicals and dangerous? Makes me crazy!)
I know the movement has been mainly Republican but to all the Democrats who mock it- the tea party made many establishment Republicans reexamine their policies. Politicians like Bob Bennett would no longer get the automatic rubber stamp from their republican base. Bennett served for three terms but was not reelected in the primary because of his vote on TARP and support of health insurance mandates. Despite many characterizing it as ‘extreme’ or ‘radical’ I have yet to see anything in the tea party movements (and rallies) that wasn’t patriotic and concerned. We don’t want to see our country go so far into debt that there is no way back. We also want to keep our freedoms and our ability to choose how we run our lives. Clearly we need government but the involvement should be as minimal as possible. Washington needs to trust the American people and the free market to make the right choices- with a little nudging from Uncle Sam along the way. Getting our country on track and out of debt will require CUTTING programs (some of them quite worthy) and getting rid of entitlements. We cannot continue to spend money we don’t have. To me it is as simple as that. As I mentioned before, this goes for the Republicans and Democrats. They both got us into our current mess.
On Tuesday, after a year or more of campaigning, many of the Tea Party Republicans came into power- particularly in the House of Representatives. Naturally not all of the tea party republicans won their races but this should be expected in any new inner-party movement. In the Democratic party many progressive candidates lost election early in the 20th century and now they are the mainstream of the party. For instance, William Jennings Bryan ran for president 3 times, loosing each time. Now his ideas are part of mainstream liberal doctrine. As weird as it sounds I expected some Tea Party Republicans to lose on Tuesday. After all, Rome wasn’t conquered in a day!
Anyway, the next two years is the chance for the Tea Party Republicans to live up to their rhetoric. We will see. I am cautiously optimistic. I know it will be hard to get everything the movement wants with just control over the house but I will be looking for some noticeable change. Even if the bills get vetoed I want to see the budget cuts go through the house and let the Democrats be to blame for blocking them. If these new Republicans wimp out I will be very disappointed.
This statement by Tea Party star Marco Rubio is encouraging of good things to come. Let’s hope he and others live up to the potential…
I pray our country can get out of the grasp of Chinese debt, that the dollar can become strong and that traditional values will reemerge. The closer we get along these lines the happier I will be. I hope I have explained my views well. Its always a little scary to put them out to the world for scrutiny. Please be kind as we debate the issues.
13 thoughts on “The Republican/ Tea Party Opportunity”
The tea party plans on making lots of cutbacks–do they have any plans to invest the money in anything that will profit us? I see a lot of republicans shooting down stimulus money that could be seen as an investment like the high speed rail project. I really respect what the tea party is wanting to accomplish but I just can’t support a movement that is far right (or far left for that matter). I did like your post though, I can see how happy you are in your picture and that is awesome!
Thanks for the compliment and for your thoughtful response! I will be disappointed if the tea party activists invest the money from cutbacks in anything but reducing the debt and balancing the budget. I don’t want to cut programs just to put them into other programs. I think there are many good projects that we will have to cut because we don’t have the money. If you can really prove that a project is an investment as you say then it may be worth considering but its hard to make investments without any money. As for light rail it may be an investment to the environment (which I support) but I don’t know if in Utah its been proven to be economically advantageous. In any case, there will be lots of reasons to not cut every program but with trillions of debt something has to go. My hope is these tea party republicans will have the guts to say no.
I am still doing research on all that stimulus talk and I see what you are saying about us needing money to in fact invest money which is the conclusion I keep coming to as well but I fear that by other countries surpassing us in innovative technology we will never rise to the top anywhere in the near future. Quite the predicament.
We are still pretty good at coming up with the innovative technology. The problem is getting those technologies built in America. Things like the ipod are invented in America but made elsewhere. The taxes and regulations make it too expensive to produce anything here. In my Dad’s company they were forced to move manufacturing to China (from Japan. America wasn’t even discussed) to make any profit. This was just to get in the lower level big box stores, let alone the costco’s and walmarts. Its a complicated problem but I’ve read many reports on the stimulus that show very few of the programs actually created jobs or led to new investment. Even if you agree with the Keynesian ideas of government investments the spending has gone too far.
No way–I don’t believe Keynesian economics work. I am still trying to imagine the government reverting to simply going by the constitution and what all that would encompass. It is a lot to take in. You know I see the benefits of putting states back in control of things like education and the such but I get really hesitant when programs like medicare, social security and unemployment are challenged simply because we have so many people depending on those programs. What will happen to those living on government assistance?
I know- I think Keynesian thought was the biggest loser in the election. It’s great in theory but not in practice.
I also agree that the big programs we will probably want to touch last. There is plenty to cut before hitting the big ones!
Actually, I have recently heard that only about 15% of the budget is not entitlements or serviceing the debt. Don’t know if that was just spin or if it is completely true, but I don’t think there are any sacred cows that shouldn’t be touched. I say this as a Grandma who is a little closer to needing that S.S. than you young ladies are. Everything needs to change, but of course there are some programs that impact more people than others. Everything that is cut will mean government workers will lose their jobs and that will be controversial and sad. I think we all have to suffer to some degree to bring down the debt. Lets pull together and help one another on a personal level.
Really? That’s an incredible statistic. I can’t believe that entitlements and servicing the debt is that high! I’m shocked.
You are right about all Americans having to sacrifice to reduce the debt. It makes me think of the WWII era where everyone pitched in to work at factories, save metal, ration food and plant victory gardens. We could use a little more of that attitude!