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The Morphing of the Tea Party
American Thinker ^ | August 6, 2012 | Lee Cary

Posted on 08/06/2012 11:53:44 AM PDT by Da Bilge Troll

The Tea Party movement morphed from protest signs to campaign signs.

That's how a Texas Tea Party activist succinctly put it when I asked him what's become of the movement. He said, "We put down our protest signs, and picked up campaign signs."

He said that former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's victory lap after passing Obamacare was a "wake-up call." It signaled that mass demonstrations would not bring significant changes. Change would only come through the ballot box.

Hearing the call, the Tea Party vacated the town squares and hit the streets where it began organizing for the long-term.

It was always a grassroots phenomenon, so no territorial shift was required. And since it enjoyed little, or no, support from established GOP county structures, it didn't need to ask permission from the local GOP leadership, or accept its judgment as authoritative.

Consequently, the movement was largely a Greenfield project, unencumbered by any pre-existing cadre of party hacks, as it morphed from event-driven protests to election-driven activism focused on supporting like-minded candidates.

Today, the local independence of Tea Party organizations remains, but communication between Tea Party organizations has continued to expand, in scope and sophistication.

The absence of central planning is a key to its strength. Decentralization gives it operational flexibility, local ownership of decisions, and continuous learning as concepts are formally, and informally, shared between local organizations. It's a network.

When James Carville recently said that the Tea Party was over, he knew better. He merely signaled what the progressive left of the Democratic Party, which now controls the party's agenda, fears most. Progressives recognize that the Tea Party represents a more clear-and-present danger to their agenda than that posed by the go-along-to-get-along mentality within the GOP establishment, where politics as usual is usual.

(Excerpt) Read more at americanthinker.com ...


TOPICS: Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: 012issues; activism; influence; teaparty
Great article and spot on, I think. It's what the RINOs don't understand.

HOWEVER - while we increase our activism we should not stop our public activities entirely! I belong to a group (K&N Patriots in O'Fallon, MO) that demonstrates EVERY SATURDAY for 2 hours on the same corner. We are very well known in our state capitol, partly because of our visibility. Candidates "drop by" to shake hands. Soldiers walk up and say "thanks". It lets the public know we haven't gone anywhere and it gains us new members almost every week. Check us out and think about doing something like this in your area!

1 posted on 08/06/2012 11:53:47 AM PDT by Da Bilge Troll
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To: Da Bilge Troll
Here are 48 things that Barack Obama has done which should make his supporters feel ashamed and embarrassed
2 posted on 08/06/2012 11:55:50 AM PDT by grundle
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To: Da Bilge Troll

A bunch of indians throwing tea into the bay (metaphorically) do not want to be identified..

-OR- Why? is it called the Tea Party?..
Some people easily overlook the OBVIOUS..

Note: UGH.. me no want to be identified by white or black socialist...


3 posted on 08/06/2012 12:21:39 PM PDT by hosepipe (This propaganda has been edited to include some fully orbed hyperbole..)
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To: Da Bilge Troll

Thanks, Troll. I was just about to say the same thing!


4 posted on 08/06/2012 12:32:07 PM PDT by Prov3456
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To: Da Bilge Troll

As long as the party continues to withhold support for Tea Party candidates for “non-compliance” with party edicts, the Tea Party will be nothing more than noise, after all is said and done, they are just republicans, too bad. All of the bravado about balanced budgets and no more debt, they all caved for the speaker of the house and his “frogs in the wheelbarrow”.


5 posted on 08/06/2012 1:36:08 PM PDT by vet7279
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To: hosepipe

Taxed Enough Already


6 posted on 08/06/2012 1:48:34 PM PDT by Owl558 ("Those who remember George Satayana are doomed to repeat him")
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To: vet7279
the Tea Party will be nothing more than noise

Do you have an alternative?

7 posted on 08/06/2012 1:57:18 PM PDT by Da Bilge Troll (Defeatism is not a winning strategy!)
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To: Prov3456

lol!


8 posted on 08/06/2012 1:59:20 PM PDT by Da Bilge Troll (Defeatism is not a winning strategy!)
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To: Da Bilge Troll
The tea party isn't interested in protests anymore...we are interested in electing people who have our values and beliefs when ever we have that choice.....and defeating people we perceive as wanting to take this country down a socialist path. We recognize that the decisions aren't always going to be ideal but we want to change the direction to the right side of the political spectrum!!
9 posted on 08/06/2012 2:06:34 PM PDT by ontap
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To: Owl558

HootHoot...


10 posted on 08/06/2012 2:20:15 PM PDT by hosepipe (This propaganda has been edited to include some fully orbed hyperbole..)
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To: Da Bilge Troll

The Tea Party would do well to keep a respectable distance from any established party and concentrate on candidates and politics that best represents its core base. The RINO’s would love to co-opt the Tea Party for their own personal corrupted use and thus undermine what the TP was supposed to represent. Just some sage advice.


11 posted on 08/06/2012 2:25:18 PM PDT by Ron H. (Ahh, how's that multi-culturism thing working out for you these days?!)
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To: ontap
The tea party isn't interested in protests anymore...we are interested in electing people who have our values and beliefs

I'm saying we can do both. We can walk and chew RINOs at the same time! I know I can!

12 posted on 08/06/2012 2:32:31 PM PDT by Da Bilge Troll (Defeatism is not a winning strategy!)
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To: Da Bilge Troll

I wish I did. I only make that statement in the hopes that we can prod those that subscribe to the Tea Party ideas will take the next step and those that support the Tea Party candidates push them and not accept the status-quot. I am truly worried about our national future and the time for just “being nice” is at an end.


13 posted on 08/06/2012 2:35:47 PM PDT by vet7279
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To: Ron H.
Just some sage advice.

Sage indeed but already taken to heart. Co-opting the Tea Party will be difficult since there are no leaders, no structure, no institutional funding, nothing to grab on to, and the members mean to keep it that way.

14 posted on 08/06/2012 2:38:55 PM PDT by Da Bilge Troll (Defeatism is not a winning strategy!)
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To: vet7279
the time for just “being nice” is at an end

Agreed. 100%

15 posted on 08/06/2012 2:41:44 PM PDT by Da Bilge Troll (Defeatism is not a winning strategy!)
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To: Ron H.
RINO corrupting Tea Party candidate in Indiana


16 posted on 08/06/2012 2:44:17 PM PDT by nascarnation
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To: Da Bilge Troll

You are correct. I think that the various TP groups should be ever vigilant to watch for politicians claiming TP endorsements and support when it is not the fact or the truth.


17 posted on 08/06/2012 2:46:19 PM PDT by Ron H. (Ahh, how's that multi-culturism thing working out for you these days?!)
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To: Da Bilge Troll
Don't get me wrong protests are great, I'm just saying we concentrate most of our energy on the elections and less on the shouting. Firing the bastards that did this is where the battle will be won. We have succeeded in moving the party to the right...just not far enough...it will be a long journey but I'm am more hopeful than I have been since Ronald Reagan!!!
18 posted on 08/06/2012 2:48:43 PM PDT by ontap
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To: nascarnation
Speaking of old chums.......


19 posted on 08/06/2012 3:01:18 PM PDT by Ron H. (Ahh, how's that multi-culturism thing working out for you these days?!)
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To: nascarnation
A little early for the scare tactics from the Romney camp isn't it?? With the Senate in the hands of conservative Republicans I don't see this as a possibility even if Obummer gets reelected.


20 posted on 08/06/2012 3:26:59 PM PDT by Ron H. (Ahh, how's that multi-culturism thing working out for you these days?!)
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To: Ron H.

Republicans wouldn’t dare fail to confirm Holder.
That would be racist......


21 posted on 08/06/2012 4:59:35 PM PDT by nascarnation
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To: Da Bilge Troll
Co-opting the Tea Party will be difficult since there are no leaders, no structure, no institutional funding, nothing to grab on to, and the members mean to keep it that way.

Yep, that's the strength of the Tea Party. Its amorphousness (and civility in behaviour) has left a lotta liberals gnashing their teeth :)

The trouble is, that strength comes at a cost. True, its leaderless distributed structure makes it impossible to co-opt. But, its free-form structure also makes it impossible to lead.

The Tea Party is a collection of disparate individuals who are bonded together by a common ideal. In Weberite terms, there's only one kind of person who can unite the Tea party: a charismatic leader.

The trouble is, political parties are not organized to accomodate charismatic leaders. To continue with the Weberism, they're far more rational-legal entities. To put it less charitably, they have more than their share of operators. People like that think a charismatic leader is a mere come-on.

I'm sure that ideological differences had something to do with Sarah Palin being sabotaged in '08, but a lot of it had to do with she being sized up by the operators as an unpredictable loose cannon. Rational-legal people hate that; they prefer predictability. For them, she "going rogue" was not a strength; it was a weakness.

Part of their hostility was rooted in that unpredictability, which will diminish over time. As they get used to her, they'll be less hostile; perhaps, the hostility will disappear entirely.

Still, the trouble with being leaderless is that different parts of the Tea Party will sign up with different leaders. When you consider the leaderlessness, the circular firing squad wasn't that surprising.

I have to admit that Mitt Romney was a pretty sharp organizer. It's almost as if he knew in advance that the circular firing squad would erupt and eliminate all his rivals. That said, his success can be taken as a lesson learned. Charismatic movements have to be formalized in order to mesh with the rational-legal organization of a political party.

Conclusion: The Tea Party's leaderless growth has turned from a vitally needed strength into a block. Tea Partiers can't take over the Republican party unless they make their peace with more formal methods of organization. That'll take some doing, but time is on their side. Once the surprise factor is gone, Republican operators (who are still needed to win) will be far less prone to go "Eek!" when someone like Sarah Palin does her thing.

22 posted on 08/06/2012 7:16:43 PM PDT by danielmryan
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To: nascarnation
Republicans wouldn’t dare fail to confirm Holder.
That would be racist......

I wouldn't be quite so sure. I think that train has left the station. I think Americans, even black Americans have grown a bit weary of the race card being played so much during Obamas reign.

23 posted on 08/06/2012 10:07:42 PM PDT by Ron H. (Ahh, how's that multi-culturism thing working out for you these days?!)
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To: Ron H.
I think Americans, even black Americans have grown a bit weary of the race card being played so much during Obamas reign.

I would have to agree. Due to over-use, the term "racist" no longer has much sting for ordinary Americans. We've learned to ignore it...or greet it with derision.

But it still strikes mortal fear into the hearts of Republicans in Washington...

24 posted on 08/06/2012 10:13:59 PM PDT by okie01 (The Mainstream Media: IGNORANCE ON PARADE)
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To: Ron H.
The Tea Party would do well to keep a respectable distance from any established party ....

As from any street leper with his hacking, tubercular cough, or a $4 hooker with her multi-strain hepatitis, or a mack-daddy pimp with multiple STD's.

25 posted on 08/07/2012 2:05:13 AM PDT by lentulusgracchus
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To: Ron H.
With the Senate in the hands of conservative Republicans I don't see this as a possibility even if Obummer gets reelected.

With the Senate in conservative Republican hands, I see an impeachment and removal from office in Barky's future, followed by prosecution, conviction, and imprisonment in a supermax facility (to prevent bustout attempts, of course).

In a cell right next to Bill Krinton's.

26 posted on 08/07/2012 2:09:10 AM PDT by lentulusgracchus
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To: ontap
it will be a long journey but I'm am more hopeful than I have been since Ronald Reagan!!!

The mistake we made after Reagan was assuming the war was won. It will never be won.

The mistake Reagan made was his pick for V.P. We're still living with the effects of that.

27 posted on 08/07/2012 10:54:22 AM PDT by Da Bilge Troll (Defeatism is not a winning strategy!)
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To: danielmryan
The Tea Party's leaderless growth has turned from a vitally needed strength into a block. Tea Partiers can't take over the Republican party unless they make their peace with more formal methods of organization.

Your analysis is very good but the point you're missing is exemplified in the above quote.

"The Tea Party" cannot take over the Republican Party -- but "Tea Partiers" can. And we are doing exactly that by "infiltrating" the formal organization.

With Romney we have learned a valuable lesson - getting your favorite nominated for President takes more time, effort and money than the Tea Party was prepared for this time. We are building the new Republican Party from the ground up and there will be a Tea Party president eventually.

28 posted on 08/07/2012 11:16:27 AM PDT by Da Bilge Troll (Defeatism is not a winning strategy!)
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To: Da Bilge Troll
"The Tea Party" cannot take over the Republican Party -- but "Tea Partiers" can. And we are doing exactly that by "infiltrating" the formal organization.

Thanks for the correction.

With Romney we have learned a valuable lesson - getting your favorite nominated for President takes more time, effort and money than the Tea Party was prepared for this time. We are building the new Republican Party from the ground up and there will be a Tea Party president eventually.

Yes, the fix is in. Tea Partiers haven't won all the time, but they've racked up enough primary and electoral victories to make them a force.

29 posted on 08/07/2012 1:57:10 PM PDT by danielmryan
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