More, Glenn Reynolds writes in The Examiner. More power; more influence; more respect:
So far the Tea Party’s record is looking pretty good. But what happens next? Many people — er, well, many pundits, anyway — complain that the Tea Party movement is entirely oppositional: For a brief moment, the key buzzword was “nihilistic,” though the connection between Turgenev and Tea Parties seems rather tenuous.
In fact, Tea Partiers seem quite clear on what they’re for: A limited government, one that keeps its nose out of their business and focuses on things like protecting the country in preference to redistributing income.
As blogger Freeman Hunt wrote recently:”You want a big tent? It’s fiscal conservatism. The people are overwhelmingly in favor of it.”
To me, that’s the most striking thing about the current political climate: a preference for smaller government, traditionally regarded as the essence of conservatism, no longer seems to be controversial. Even some liberals claim to be in favor of it. On the other hand, the most striking fact about the political climate, not of the moment but of the last 50 years, is that no matter how often voters choose smaller government at the polls, the government never shrinks. It only grows–through Republican and Democratic Congresses and Democratic and Republican administrations.
Is it possible the Tea Party movement could be different, or is it undertaking a task that modern American history has proven hopeless? Time will tell. For what it’s worth, as Reynolds notes, we live in an era in which disintermediation is all the rage, and the Army of Davids, a category into which the tea partiers surely fall, sometimes wins.
To participate in formulating the tea partiers’ Contract From America, go here.