Although I shouldn’t deign to comment on the Tea Party’s “platform,” I can’t help but to do so after hearing some of their profound video snippets explaining their concerns.

1. Smaller government…except for the programs they don’t want cut (which of course are the ones they use like Social Security or Medicare: “I don’t know what to say. Maybe I don’t want smaller government. I guess I want smaller government and my Social Security.” She added,”I didn’t look at it from the perspective of losing things I need. I think I’ve changed my mind.”- A tea party member in a NY times poll).

Where were the protesters when the last administration nearly doubled the deficit ($5.7T to $9.2T), of which a hefty chunk ($1T) was spent on a foreign preemptive war based on faulty intelligence?

2. A return to the founding fathers’ principles.  (Apparently (?) unaware that only white, land owning males could vote during that illustrious time period, which would of course preclude many of the organization’s members from voting for the very reforms they crave.  You can’t just pick and choose the parts of historic eras you want and ignore the context or aspects that don’t fit with your “philosophy”).

3. Representation for their demographic…older, well-educated white people. (We certainly don’t have that currently).

4. We’re now-especially with Obama-heading down the road to Socialism.

5. Lower taxes…despite the tax cuts they (and ~90% of America) just received.

6. The Health Care Reform bill should be repealed, partly because it’s a lot like socialist medicine. (Never mind that the WHO ranked the US health care system as 37th the last time they did such research.  And who ranked above the US? France, Finland, Australia, the UK-all socialist systems.  And even though many view this report as flawed, the US’s higher ranking still lags behind the other countries-just not as much as the initial report suggests-when spending is taken out of the equation.)

7. The Health Care Reform bill should be repealed, partly because it’s so expensive and will increase the deficit. (“We want to take money that is already being spent on health care and re-allocate it toward reforms that lower costs and assure quality affordable health care for all Americans…Health insurance reform would be fully paid for over 10 years, and it would not add one penny to the deficit.” “The Congressional Budget Office estimates that, together, these measures [slowed Medicare and Medicaid spending and taxes on the rich and Cadillac-plans] will decrease spending and increase revenue enough to reduce the deficit by $143 billion over the first 10 years and more than $1 trillion in the second decade.” -The White House)

I’m all about the freedom of speech, but I usually liked to see it backed up with rationality, or at least some evidence that doesn’t put a situation into a vacuum without context.  Of course, the Tea Party represents a small minority of the populace, it’s just too bad that they get so much publicity.

Relevant Links:

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2010/04/14/us/teaparty.html

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/15/us/politics/15poll.html

http://www.costofwar.com/

http://www.treasurydirect.gov/NP/NPGateway

http://www.photius.com/rankings/healthranks.html

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB125608054324397621.html

http://www.whitehouse.gov/realitycheck/faq#c1

http://www.slate.com/id/2248560/

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