By Art Gallagher
Now that the left is unhappy with President Obama it is safe to criticize him without being called a racists.
Obama came into office with a promise of unifying the country. He’s done it. The extreme left, the extreme right and the mushy middle agree that Obama is not a leader and not up to the job of President of the United States.
From today’s APP.com editorial:
The president gave in and gave in, and he has lost whatever good will the great middle had for his attempt to be the rational one in the argument. Americans cannot respect a president who runs up the white flag of surrender.
And this obscene sausage-making is only the latest in a long line of appeasements: on health care, on Guantanamo Bay, on civilian trials for terror suspects.
We teach our children the fine art of compromise, but if you compromise away your values, you’ve lost something you cannot get back by barter.
We don’t want to elect some “philosopher-king” out of Plato. We want a leader with fire in his belly, who at least puts up an honest struggle based on core principles, who, in the words of Theodore Roosevelt, “spends himself in a worthy cause … and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
So many thought that Barack Obama might be just that man. It looks as if we were wrong.
Not surprisingly, the leftist media is assailing the Tea Party for exhibiting the very characteristics they say Obama is lacking.
APP.com says Obama “has revealed himself to be a man unwilling to fight for the principles in which he has said he believed.” Yet the principled Tea Party members of congress are “80 unreasoning Tea Party members of the House of Representatives and their right-wing echo chamber on talk radio and cable TV?
NY Times Columnist Maureen Dowd said:
Consider what the towel-snapping Tea Party crazies have already accomplished. They’ve changed the entire discussion. They’ve neutralized the White House. They’ve whipped their leadership into submission. They’ve taken taxes and revenues off the table. They’ve withered the stock and bond markets. They’ve made journalists speak to them as though they’re John Calhoun and Alexander Hamilton.
Indeed, the accomplishments of the Tea Party members of congress are impressive. They have changed the discourse. A year ago the Obama, Reid, Pelosi triumvirate were expanding the federal government with impunity. Today there is a new direction. The job or reining government is hardly done. The deficit/debt deal is far from perfect, but it is a huge accomplishment.
For the most part the Tea Party members of congress and other Republicans who voted no on the debt ceiling deal have been gracious in victory. While asserting their principles and not backing down on the need for spending cuts and a balanced budget amendment, the have praised the leadership of Speaker John Boehner.
Grass roots Tea Party activists need to develop such grace without abandoning their principles.
The Tea Party has withstood vicious media attacks since its emergence. They were able to withstand the attacks of racism and lunacy with grace and cogent arguments.
Whether the Tea Party can withstand the coming attacks remains to be seen. The behavior and rhetoric of many grassroots activists and leaders is feeding into the left’s new attacks of crazy and unreasonable. Many Tea Party activists are coming off as sore winners. They are coming off as crazy and unreasonable.
Their anger at Republicans is misdirected. Their expressed disappointment with recent heroes, like Allen West who voted with the majority yesterday, is misguided.
The leftist media cannot thwart the Tea Party movement on its own. However, the movement can be killed off if the Tea Party unwittingly cooperates, which it is in danger of doing.
Can the Tea Party survive victory? Time will tell if the two year old unstructured grassroots movement can develop political maturity. Time will tell if it has what it takes for the long haul of incremental victories