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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Dumping On the Tea Party Movement

The tea party movement seems to be a spontaneous and leaderless grass roots response to the outrageous way our federal government has been behaving lately. Thousands of people showed up in public photo-op demonstrations around the country, and in D.C., to protest the economic stimulus package, the bank bailouts, the auto company bailouts, socialized healthcare, the Federal Reserve, unfunded entitlements, and the explosion in federal debt. They thump the constitution and claim to value liberty. But do they really?

Who are these people? Apparently they are a coalition of disgruntled Republicans and independents, perhaps boosted by some spin-off from the so-called “Ron Paul Revolution”. There was even a Nashville convention, with Sarah Palin as a speaker. Will there soon be a “Tea Party Party”?

I certainly agree with the alarm that the tea party goers have over the current state of affairs, but my question to them is – Where have you people been!? Why weren’t you protesting when George W Bush was trampling civil liberties, inventing foreign wars, and expanding the national debt? Where were you when George W Bush, in his final year, signed off on the initial stimulus package and bank bailouts?

Here are some more questions for the tea party people:

You say healthcare should be provided by the market, not by government? Fine. Does that mean you are now ready to repeal Medicare? And why is government-run healthcare so different from government-run education. Under the ethical principles of socialism, you should accept both; under the ethical principles of liberty, you should accept neither.

You say you don’t want cap-and-trade, and you don’t want the EPA to restrict emissions of carbon dioxide. Fine. Does that mean you are now ready to abolish the EPA? The EPA has been trampling private property rights from it’s very inception, with such weapons as the Endangered Species Act and the Wetlands Preservation Act. The EPA is not compatible with liberty, nor is it even constitutional.
The questions could go on, but my point is - I suspect the tea party goers approve of big government, just not “bigger” government. If the tea party goers truly loved liberty as they claim, they would be supporting the Libertarian Party, not spawning a new movement.