Is there really anything that special about the Tea Party?

(l to r) Deal, Scott & Paladino….anti-Government crooks

Christine McConnell faces new charge of  expenses corruption….but that’s nothing new in the Tea Party ranks.

While the difference between aspiration and achievement is often the basis of great comedy, in politics it can also harden one’s cynical resolve not to believe in anyone holding public office….or trying to.

Our best home-grown example of this is Nick Clegg, the man who went from Unknown Politician to favourite for Prime Minister in last April’s Election opinion polls. Having since gone back on almost everything he espoused and believed in, Slick Nick rationalises each gently broken vow (and omitted Manifesto promise) with “This is a marathon not a sprint” and “It will take some time for people to get used to Coalition Government”. Especially Vince Cable.

But now it seems, America’s anti-Establishment backlash is slowly emerging as maybe not such a backlash after all. More of a back-scratch, in fact.

Accepting the genera rule that most Democrat-leaning US media will gild any accusatory lily to nail the Tea Partiers as uniformly dumb, the increasingly infamous Christine O’Donnell seems to be as corrupt as she is anti-onanist. The U.S. Attorney’s office has confirmed that it is reviewing a complaint about Miss O’Donnell’s campaign spending. The complaint, filed by a watchdog group, isn’t the first one to be investigated: CREW (Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington) had a go at her last year on the same basis, and several former campaign workers have alleged that she often dipped into political contributions to pay personal expenses in her three consecutive (failed) attempts to get into the US Senate.

Her campaign manager Matthew Moran has said Ms O’Donnell is the victim of “false-attack rumours”, an interesting phrase perhaps trying to suggest that Christine’s enemies make up stories about her being attacked. It’s also possible, of course, that they simply report wrongdoing, and then spot how suspiciously large numbers of other folks are doing the same thing. Anyway, this is now something about which the Attorney General’s men and women must take a decision.

Meanwhile, arch anti-Washington and All American Cloud carrier Sarah Palin saw a personal popularity rating in her home State fall to 33%.  During the midterm elections campaign, Mrs Palin enthusiastically backed Joe Miller, the Tea Party candidate in the Alaskan Senate contest. But he lost to a Republican write-in candidate. Given Palin herself is technically a Republican, some GOPers seem to have taken that to heart: Mike Huckerbee is now the preferred Republican Presidential candidate for 2012 by some distance.

And we shouldn’t forget that, as Governor of Alaska, an independent investigator for the state Personnel Board found that there might be evidence suggesting a trust fund, created to pay Palin’s legal expenses, was in violation of state ethics law. With suspicious haste, she resigned the Office eighteen months before the completion of her term.

Last March, a Nevadan asphalt contractor faced a legal challenge to his Tea Party candidacy for the U.S. Senate after theft and bouncy-cheque charges were brought against him in a Las Vegas Court – enough to put him behind bars for 14 years if convicted. TP heads quickly distanced themselves from Scott Ashjian, by issuing a press statement asking him to ‘Get lost’. In the eventual election, he picked up 2% of the vote.

Specifically, three raging anti-Federal-cost Partiers set new standards in hypocrisy as the mid-terms progressed.

In New York, businessman Tea Party candidate Carl Paladino railed against government costs, but turned out to be the state government’s largest landlord in Western New York.  In Florida’s Republican gubernatorial primary, Tea Party-backed candidate Rick Scott became the subject of an FBI probe that ultimately uncovered the largest Medicaid fraud in the nation’s history, totaling $1.7 billion in civil and criminal penalties. In Georgia, pro-TP candidate Nathan Deal made $1.4 million a year on a government contract….that never went out for bids….of which Deal was also pocketing an undisclosed $75,000 salary.

Google this stuff, and you’d be blogging until Domesday. The Tea Party remains what is seemed to me to represent from Day One: a motley crew of redneck opportunists and hucksters with barmy beliefs…and the standard depth of brass neck required to be….er, politicians.

Still, James Delingpole believes in them – and as JD observes, he’s right about everything.

 

18 thoughts on “Is there really anything that special about the Tea Party?

  1. Yes James still has the baby Alien (small Gov’t) carried deep within his chest. he hasn’t worked out what the problem is in our Western ‘democracies’.

    The ‘solution’ to the problem of Big Gov’t to Tea Partiers and JD is a smaller version of the larger version. How simple a fix, almost as simple as the people claiming they have a fix!

    The problem of Bush, of Obama (Blair, Brown, Cameron, Regan, Clinton, Kennedy and Nixon et al) is ‘solved’ by finding a new slick-talking puppet sponsored by the same vested interests as all the scum that came before. Simple!!

    What JD, the Tea Party, Daniel Hannan, the Telegraph and wider society has not worked out is the problem is not what colour ribbon you wear, nor what you promise, but the problem is systemic, of government itself.

    The problem is the monopoly power structure (of Government). The problem is hidden in the age old often repeated, never fully understood, message, “power corrupts, total power corrupts completely”.

    All authority structures are not corrupt in and of themselves, but they breed corruption because power in a monopoly power structure goes to everyones head. Onlya free society and free markets (the competition mechanism) works because it spreads power to all players, specifically end users.

    Matters not if it’s the Dept of Transport or the Dept of Childrens Wear, nor Zimbabwe or that other Banana Republic, Britain. The problem is the same everywhere you go: monopoly power structures corrupt the incumbents, there’s no competition mechanism to keep people honest, to sort the wheat from the shit.

    Democracy is a sham.
    Government is a ponzi scheme
    Debt based money from bankers is another

    What we need is a free society and free markets…. no Gov’t, police, judiciary, lawyers, crones, fascists, Marxists or scum required..

    • This analysis was fine until it got to ‘free markets’.
      The Friedman model of Globalist capitalism is nothing more than a game of Monopoly, in which Goldman Sachs and the Beijing Politburo are merely two players slightly more enthusiastic than the rest.
      Gold is a manipulated market. Derivatives is a fantasy market. Liquidity pools are a Global scam.
      Under free markets, the richest 0.01% of American citizens got 700% richer during the last twenty years, and the ‘middle’ 63% got 30% poorer – in real terms.
      I’m no socialist, but somewhere between Moscow and Wall St is the land where the rest of us would prefer to live.

      • John

        Yes indeed, a game of “monopoly”. And who is the primary beneficiary of the monopoly power (Ponzi) structure that is Government?

        Ans. monopolist corporates (like banksters Goldmans, GE, the military industrial complex).

        Think this free market through. Free markets will kill these corporate monopoly giants without the protection (racket) of Big Brother Gov’t there to protect them. Death be a thousand cuts, death of these dinosaurs by a 100 or 1,000 small companies.

        Who is propping up these giant car makers, banks, pension funds and indeed the scams of dark pools?

        Government.

        Kill Government and this collossal coporate monpoly world crumbles in a matter of months (i promise;).

        Look around the world and what’s the problem. Big Gov’t and Big Corporations (and Big public sector Unions), propping each other up by sucking the lifeblood (wealth) from small-medium enterprises and Joe Public through that ultimate liberal sucker punch, that ultimate Ponzi scheme if all, Government.

      • Velocity
        If we could devolve organisational matters down to local level – and firmly establish equality before the law – then I think you’d be onto something.
        But ultimately there is a strain within about 5% of Homo sapiens that wants to control others. And finally, there really are some folks who get born, and don’tknow which way is up.

      • Correct.
        Ten years ago I thought I was right wing.
        Now I am in a limbo where I know what I think (in moral terms) but there is absolutely no party that offers anything of interest. They are all self servers and power mad.

  2. Like other political parties, the TP is popular for what it claims to believe in and promises to do in office. Promises to downsize American Govt is always a good ticket to ride and after the financial crises which has lead to unprecedented govt debt, so is a dose of fiscal conservatism. In these two aims, I support them but sadly, other policies of theirs are not to my liking eg: IIUC they’re anti-abortion and many members have a puritanical religious streak in them. JD is still young enough to only see the bits he wants to see.

  3. KG

    Same here. I was right wing. then I realised the problem wasn’t your wing, because they BOTH are various doses of either fascism or marxism. They both left bitter tastes in my mouth as both sought to take my money and both sought to restrict my freedom.

    The problem was and is with a monopoly power structure, any monopoly private or public. They both deliver crap because they get rid of the competition mechanism, the most under-rated part of capitalism. Competition turns the tables, it distributes power to the end-users.

    Only the balance of power distributed between user and provider keeps both parties honest.

    In Gov’t or in private monopoly corporate structures they can deliver you whatever shit they like and you have no choice, cannot walk away and go somewhere else.

    So like the USSR they deliver the Trabbant. In the West you have a choice of 20 car manufacturers.

    But there’s zero difference between a communist Govt and a Western Gov’t power structure. Only in the West there’s private wealth to keep up our Gov’ts propped up longer. But whatever our Govts touch turns to crap, same as the USSR.

    State delivered anything (healthcare, transport, roads, weather forecasting, education etc etc) is all crap. It’s the same monopoly power delivery structure in the West as in the USSR.

    The problem is monopoly (Gov’t) and monopolists (banksters, corporates). The solution is competition.

    Freedom and the free (competitive) markets is the solution to this corrupt bankrupt (monopoly ridden) world

  4. John

    Devolving matters down to local level is the same as James Delingpole saying he doesn’t want Big Gov’t, the solution is small Gov’t. And it’s the same as Danial Hannan saying he doesn’t want Big Gov’t, he wants local Gov’t. But its the same problem no matter what size it is!

    Look at your local Council, it’s as corrupt, incompetent and abusive of its citizens as the bigger version. ALL the problems of Big Gov’t i can detail i my local Gov’t.

    That’s because BOTH national and local Gov’ts are monopoly power structures. Voting for a new snake oil salesman every 4 years doesn’t change the structure be it local or national, be it public or private enterprise either.

    A small company monopoly on your local trash collection service behaves in the exact same way as the global monopoly that is Microsoft. Both over-charge you for crap (a 2nd rate service). My local Gov’t over-charges for everything same as that dustbin at Westminster.

    People who think they’ve got the solution just don’t understand the problem. Monopolies are the problem. The competition mechanism is the solution, it’s why free markets have always delivered and always keep people honest.

    As for the strain of 5% that always want control what do you think Gov’t gives them? The ratchet over society and free markets. Who the f**k do you think foisted that structure on humanity????

    A “democratic Government” is the ultimate sucker punch for society to swallow. It’s given every monopolist, Marxist and physcopath the fastest power structure to realise their every filthy dream.

    Look around you. What’s wrong with the world? Everything that’s wrong, from high energy prices to a past-its-sell-by-date road network to big bad bankrupt banks can be filed under 2 catagories:

    1. Government
    2. Monopoly corporates

    Both are connected at the hip.

    Remove Gov’t and you remove the other cancer.

    Freedom and free markets are the solution to monopoly power structures. Competition kills crap and corruption. Government props it up.

    • I don’t think many people here will argue in favour of Big Govt or monopoly corporations. We regularly rail against both as you will know.

      IMV the solution to Big Govt is for Britain to have a proper written Constitution/BoR. This would set out the roles/responsibilities of a democratic govt elected under its auspices. Then: “if it ain’t on the list, it ain’t govt’s business” would be the order of the day. But I’m sure that large numbers of people couldn’t stomach a society in which they were expected to stand on their own feet and make their own way thru life; that is why socialism is so popular.

      To deal with monopoly corporation issues, our laws need to be toughened up to at least US anti-trust level and then enforced. It is a criminal shame that not one person has been held to account for the economic collapse Britain suffered.
      But we also need to consider that some investments require huge sums of money. EG: Britain needs several scores of new power stations right now and only big energy corps can muster that sort of investment. Ditto new car plants. And the world would not be where it is today in computers were it not for two monopoly corps: IBM then Microsoft.

      • Bankrupt Taxpayer

        Trust me I’ve been through all options, including the one you mention, having a written constitution, better defining rules and roles. And here’s the shake-down, no amount of them work.

        Look at the EU and its ‘no bailouts’ clauses, its well defined principles of only 3% GDP debt levels for member Gov’ts?? Where are those rules, trashed in the bin by the elite scum.

        How about n less than 2 well meaning well defined Codes of Conducts for British MP’s on expenses?? Trashed in the bin by the scum.

        You name ANY law (Labour fabricated 2,600 in their 13yrs) that achieves anything?

        How about the American Constitution, that’s great isn’t it? Trashed by the criminal scum elite.

        Remember rules were made by one bunch of idiots to tell another bunch of idiots how to behave. They never work. Does the law on murder stop murder? How about the law of drugs? Law on speeding? All worthless pieces of paper lying on a shelf gathering dust like every ‘agreement’ the UN ever made, the G20, the EU and Westminster.

        We have warehouses full of legislation. We’re drowning in paperwork. All not worth the paper they’re written on because the criminal scum will ignore it all, wangle their way round it.

        I’ve exhausted EVERY avenue and the ONLY path that works is a free society and free markets. Both are self’-regulating, no law or judiciary required (another monopoly power/ponzi system that’s a crone of the State and elite).

        Society is a self-regulating like free markets. Go to any small English town, there’s no Gov’t or Police there, everything gets along just fine. Go to any US town that’s just gone bankrupt and lost its Council, Police, Firemen and closed its schools. Any problems? Nope. No anarchy breaking out. Life gets along alot smoother without the small town scum of Gov’t.

        Free your mind from the liberal leeches and ideas you’ve swallowed. Free your mind from thinking the State is some support or there for your safety. It is not. It is and always was designed to be a Ponzi scheme on society.

        Probably like me you’ve always looked after yourself and never needed a politician or the State in your life. So why does it empty 60% of our GDP into this national toilet? Gov’t used to be 3% opf GDP 100 years ago, where’s the improvement for the 60% this fraud machines now consumes????

        If we are true libertarians none of us would force such a sopping wet liberal monopoly power structure on each other and ever except the idea we need Gov’t again. It is the ultimate Ponzi scheme, like the debt’based money bankers foisted on society. Its the same corruption for control of society and living off other peoples hard earned money.

        Gov’t is s criminal elitest scam. Gov’t has failed, miserably throughout history. It always fails, goes bankrupt, collapses in a stinking pile of crap. The model does not work. Period. Game Over.

        Freedom & Free Markets.. the ONLY structures that work throughout history, proven time and again.

  5. Mr Ward,
    If you really want to understand the Tea Party movement I suggest you read this article:
    http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Front_Page/LL07Aa01.html
    Mr Goldman has this exactly right. My own involvement in the Tea Party confirms his view, there are other facets however: The Tea Party generally opposes affirmative action and is therefore labeled racist, in reality the TP opposition to AA is entirely rational; it is not the children of the elite who lose places at prestigious universities to unqualified minorities, it is the gifted children of middle and working class families who suffer. TP support for the military is regarded as unthinking “red-neckism”, actually it is again rational in that the military is largely manned by our children and grandchildren, Washington elites supply a miniscule proportion of America’s fighting men, but an anti war politician such as Ron Paul is popular in the TP. Certainly the TP is conservative, but as Mr Goldman explains, you become conservative when you have something to conserve.
    Certainly the TP has attracted some charlatans, although I would argue much fewer than the established parties, but we are building, and let the Repubulican party be warned; we are watching you and if you don’t perform then you will become a rump party and America will be split between a true conservative party and the big govt., totalitarian, union thugs who are the Democratic party.

    • Good comment Roger, and much appreciated. I am with you 150% on the Affirmative Action thing: the worst kind of honkey liberalism – and doomed in the end to lower standards….as it has inthe UK’s education system, once ability streaming was dropped.

      So we may have more in common than you think: my purpose in writing the piece was to stop the contemporary tendency to raise expectations that then can’t be met.

      JW

      • Mr Ward,
        Thank you. You touch on my greatest fear. The fiscal situation of the US is now so dire that only the most drastic action can save us. If you consider the condition of most of the States, particularly the largest ones like California, New York and Illinois, our circumstances are much worse than those that pertain in the EU. We do have the incredible advantage that the US$ is the international currency so we can create money and (for the moment) buy what we need.
        However we may be approaching a threshold where the actions that need to be taken are so severe that no democratically elected govt. can possibly take them, this is what I fear. We are already a militarised society and I believe are entering a period when a military coup in the US is inevitable.
        We have recently been treated to a display of politics as usual in Washington that should make every citizen weep, we have extended tax cuts and made new ones, when no sensible person can possibly believe that we can get out of this mess without tax increases, as a result adding approx. $900Bn to an annual deficit already $1.4Tn.
        This cannot end well.

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