Where The Tea Party And The Democrats Meet


A rationalist is simply someone for whom it is more important to learn than to be proved right; someone who is willing to learn from others — not by simply taking over another’s opinions, but by gladly allowing others to criticize his ideas and by gladly criticizing the ideas of others. The emphasis here is on the idea of criticism or, to be more precise, critical discussion.

Karl Popper, On Freedom

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I am sitting here reading something on teaparty.org.  I am on the whole surprised how much they and I have in common.  How much the Democrats and the tea party have in common. 

On it’s face that seems a ridiculous statement, and there are major differences, but bear with me.  I am looking at their about page, and there they have a list of Non-negotiable core beliefs.  I can tell you after seeing them, that they read with the exception of a scant few, maybe 3 or 4 of them, like the core beliefs of the Democratic party. I’m gonna go over a few of them to show you exactly what I mean.

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Tea party says: Illegal aliens are here Illegally.  Democrats say: Duh!  Of course they are!   We are fighting against, and will continue to do everything possible to combat illegal immigration, using all means necessary to do so, from border patrol to making it less attractive for illegals to come here, by penalizing those who hire them.  Those are, by and large, the boundaries the federal government has to offer.  It is up to the states to handle some of the workload as well, so long as it doesn’t step on the toes of the federal government. 

There’s that pesky constitution, and it’s pesky Supremacy Clause again.  🙂

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Tea party says:  Pro-domestic employment is indispensable.  Democrats say:  We have created or saved over 3 million jobs with the stimulus package (go ahead, tea partiers, boo all you like), and with the seed money that the stimulus is, we are creating industries that will not only survive but thrive, to make up for the mistakes made in previous administrations both Democratic and Republican that bled this nation’s core industries white.

Damn, 2 for 2, as far as it goes identical, though you can see the roots of a major difference between the two in the above statement.

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Tea party says:  Stronger Military Is Essential.  Democrats say:  We hear ya.  And we have spent so far this year, on the top 5 contractors to the U.S. Military alone almost $60,000,000,000.  Not to mention that the Pentagon budget for FY 2010 is set at over half a trillion dollars.  Defense spending has increased under this President to keep our country strong, safe, and free.  We know you hate spending money, but we also know you love your military, tea partiers.  We do too, and we know what has to be done to keep things running smoothly, and it is getting done.

Or are you calling our military weak?

Thought so.  3 for 3. 

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Viddy of the day: Just because I am making the point that there is common ground between Dems and Teas, doesn’t mean I like the way they act or condone all the things they do. The racism, which does exist within the tea party, for example, is one major sticking point for me.  The Republican pro-business, pseudo-populist, divide and conquer America, agenda loving side of them, I vociferously disagree with. And there is more, but that is for another time.  Thom Hartmann and Mark Williams go at it here.  It’s a fun listen.

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Every tax, however, is to the person who pays it a badge, not of slavery but of liberty. It denotes that he is a subject to government, indeed, but that, as he has some property, he cannot himself be the property of a master.

Adam Smith, The wealth of nations, book V

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Mercy to the guilty is cruelty to the innocent.

Adam Smith, the theory of moral sentiments

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Tea party says:  Special interests eliminated:  Democrats say:  We agree.  Special interest groups have for too long held the process of getting things done in this nation hostage.  They hindered the health care debate, paid to bus people in to protest better health care for all Americans, paid $3,000,000 a week since the inauguration to derail every single portion of the Presidents legislative agenda.  They have made it possible for the fiery rhetoric on both sides of this debate to get inflamed out of all proportion.  They made the tea party the powerful political entity it is today.

Or do you seriously think that “Americans for prosperity” and “Freedomworks” are grassroots organizations? Seriously?

Batting a thousand, baybee!

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Tea party says: Gun ownership is sacred.  Democrats say:  Umm… Sacred?  I dunno about praying at the church of the holy double barrel shotgun, but it is a right in the constitution.  Every argument that this President is going to take away your guns has failed because he doesn’t want them.  He is an American (You birthers can boo now) as are we Democrats, and he and we love this country, and we all believe in the rights conferred by the constitution.  And that includes the right to bear arms. 

Rest easy, no one wants to take your pop gun, Billy Bob.

5 for 5

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Tea party says: National Budget must be balanced.  Democrats say: We think so too!  Circumstances dictated that we had to do something to break out of the insane mess the last 30 years of Laissez-faire governance created.  And we did.  We spent a ton on stimulus, and we had to.  Without that spending, unemployment would be closer to 15%, and the underemployment numbers would be closer to 25%.  That spending was necessary, and despite what the right wing pundits tell you, the democrats are trying to reign in spending as much as possible, while doing everything we can to help the people.

The stimulus, despite what you may think, worked, and did our nation much good. (Go ahead and boo again, tea partiers)

And the President has done a great deal better than his predecessor, who brought you tarp, and the auto bailout, and the great recession.  Don’t forget that Government motors was a decision made both necessary and possible by George Bush and his predecessors.  Blame Obama all you like, your people, you right wingers, your people had a major part in this mess we are all trying to fix.

6 for 6.  just barely safe, but there it is.   We do agree on this, even if we can’t get together in any practical way on it at the moment.  And that will change, and not because of the tea party.

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A note on a few that I have not spoken of so far.  “Bail-out And Stimulus Plans Are Illegal” is a joke, you don’t get to make the law, congress does. That lil core belief is a steaming pile of horse crap.  “Government Must Be Downsized.” is a pipe dream.  No American government has dropped in size or power in my lifetime, or anytime before. Lie to your family and friends about Reagan, not me, I’ll point out the truth to you.  No party, once in power has ever voted to divest itself of power.  That is why movements are created, to GET power. 

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That’s it from here, ladies and gentlemen.  There are vast differences between us as well, and I will cover those at a later date.  I am going to look at the want ads, and see if there be a job for me out there.  No rest for the unemployed, the poor, the huddled masses, yearning for a decent paycheck.  The wretched refuse of the bleeding economy, that not even other Americans really want.

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