July 29, 2011

WSJ: Reconciling Tea Party vs. GOP

This op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal is mostly right about these points on Tea Party versus the GOP;
The Republican establishment reasserted itself this week, and good thing, too, because the establishment was right. It said Republicans in the House should back and pass the Boehner bill on the debt ceiling because it goes in the right directions, contains spending cuts but not taxes, and is viable. So accept victory, avert crisis, and get it to the Senate.

The establishment was being conservative in the Burkean sense: acknowledges reality, respect it, and make the most progress possible within it. This has not always been true of them. They spent the first decade of this century backing things a truly conservative party would not have dreamed of—careless wars, huge spending and, most scandalously, a dreamy and unconservative assumption that it would all work out because life is sweet and the best thing always happens. They were mostly led by men and women who had never been foreclosed on and who assumed good luck, especially unearned good luck, would continue. They were fools, and they lost control of their party when the tea party rose up, rebuking and embarrassing them. Then the tea party saved them by not going third party in 2009-10. And now the establishment has come forward to save the tea party, by inching it away from the cliff and reminding it the true battles are in 2012, and after. Let's hope the tea party takes the opportunity.
The 'victory' is small, and voting for the Boehner plan doesn't guarantee success in the Senate or with the President. But the points are right about the unfettered Bush adventurism. Something needed to be done about 9/11. Something was done, but not necessarily all of it was right. But there's a larger point in their for conservatives. Begrudgingly we followed Bush on a number of things we didn't agree with. If we could do that, reconciling ourselves to a Boenher plan, should be a lot easier. It doesn't mean following the establishment blindly either. Our often begrudging loyalty to Bush displayed our loyalty. That's a good quality, but blind loyalty is not.

The GOP has been given the Tea Party loyalty in 2010. But it's not been repaid yet. They owe us. They claim they are playing the long game. Swallowing a weaker bill and waiting to see what happens in 2012 is not a big price to pay, it's a small wait. The GOP has the opportunity to provide the Tea Party with a big payoff. It's worth the wait. It's not going to be possible to get Cut Cap and Balance this time around. That's frustrating but it doesn't mean this is over.

As much as I'm in the Tea Party camp, I believe that we need to work through the GOP as our best chance to affect real change for the country. It's not ideal because it will take time, but bringing the GOP into line with conservative thinking is not an impossible task and better than any other alternative out there.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Disagreement is always welcome. Please remain civil. Vulgar or disrespectful comments towards anyone will be removed.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Share This