Thursday, February 18, 2010

Tea Party Convention

The National Tea Party Convention is being held at a fancy resort, features $550 ticket prices, a steak and lobster dinner and a guest speaker with a $100,000 speaking fee. It’s sponsored by a for-profit company with a mysterious wealthy benefactor, and its organizers, who have been accused of secrecy and corruption, have threatened lawsuits against dissenters and clamped down on news coverage.

Sounds like just the kind of thing that tea party activists, whose populist outrage is directed at the Washington and Wall Street establishments, would be up in arms over.

Except it’s a tea party convention.

Setting the Convention's Tone:
The opening speaker at the first National Tea Party Convention called President Obama a "committed Socialist ideologue" who was elected because "we do not have a civics, literacy test before people can vote."

"You have launched the counter-revolution," the speaker, former Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-Colo.), told 600 or so delegates of the grassroots movement assembled at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel in Nashville Wednesday night. "It is our nation."

Tancredo also insisted on using Obama's middle name, Hussein, and said he was thankful Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona lost the 2008 presidential election because Obama has mobilized an uprising.

Key note speaker Sarah Palin:
Sarah Palin presented no ideas for change and she presented nothing of any substance to build a plan upon. True, true, she was there to fire-up the TEA Partiers, so it wasn’t as if she needed to come prepared to present a plan to bring America back from Socialistic death. Saturday night it was all about Sarah Palin, the cheerleader.

As with any protest movement, consensus at the Tea Party Convention proved elusive in two days of debate, but they seemed to agree on five key points:

1. Don't Tread on Me
The tea-party folks are innately suspicious of any institutions.

2. The Party in Tea Party Refers Only to Boston
"Form another party? Why would we want to do that?"

3. We Don't Need a Leader
"The tea-party movement has no leader, and ... neither did the American Revolution,"

4. This We Believe
Small government, lower taxes, greater individual liberties, more power to the states and government strictly by the Constitution and Bill of Rights: these are the general principles all tea-party activists can agree upon, to the extent that there was much discussion about a platform.

5. President Palin?
At one point on Saturday, some disgruntled Tennessee tea-party activists held a press conference to complain about the cost of attending the event ($549 per person), which they say excluded many supporters. But when asked whether they begrudged Sarah Palin her reported $100,000 speaking fee, they blanched. "Of course not. I love Sarah Palin, we — I think it's safe to say we — all love Sarah Palin," said one of those complaining about ticket prices that presumably helped to pay for her keynote speech.

"You don't need an office or a title to make a difference," Palin said, noting that Saturday would have been Ronald Reagan's 99th birthday. "We are now the keepers of conservative values and good works."

In Washington, the Republican establishment has wrestled with the tea party movement, but House Republican Leader John A. Boehner (Ohio) said that there is "no difference" in the beliefs of Republicans and tea party activists.

Source: Yahoo News, Politico, Washington Post, Huffington Post

No comments:

Post a Comment