Thursday, January 7, 2010

The Tea Party Challenge

However, I'm not sure a tea party movement will resemble A Democratic activist once told me he was surprised that (he'd heard) the largest Tea Party email list was only about 50,000 people. Compared to's many millions of emails, that seemed inconsequential. That's a key misunderstanding. The Left think this is an organized, top-down effort - a few organizations spinning up the sheep to do their bidding. That's why they kept insisting this was "astroturf". But that's exactly wrong (and a serious under-estimation of the legitimacy and broad resonance of the outrage). The tea party movement is not a single organization with millions of email addresses. It is tens of thousands of small groups and individuals, each of which has dozens, hundreds or thousands of email addresses. The tea party movement really is a decentralized, spontaneous, grassroots reaction. Of course, that has up and down sides. Instead of organizing to accomplish specific victories (as has done on occassion), they may more closely resemble the anti-war crowd - full of sound and fury, but without much specific direction. The anti-war "movement" eventually became alienated or folded into organizations like The immediate problem both Tea Party activists and Republicans face is that, while they know what they don't want, they don't have a lot of clear ideas about how to accomplish what they do want. "Be principled" is not a more

No comments:

Post a Comment