Every two years for as long as I can remember, political pundits and politicians have said, “This is the most important election of our lifetimes,” or made similar lamentation that life as we know it will come to an end- “unless you send me money so that I can get reelected.” Those of us who awakened briefly from our self-absorbed slumber voted for candidates from our party of choice. Lots of us sent money. Then we went back to work doing whatever we did. Meanwhile, those we elected sold out the public interest for their private interest. Not all of them, but enough that real problems were ignored. Elected officials realized they could give themselves perks and pay raises and lead lives of isolated luxury. They could use the public trough to get themselves re-elected over and over. It was – like the Dire Straits song - “money for nothing and chicks for free.”
Then in 2008, the whole house of economic cards began to collapse. Only this time, it seemed to be a much more public airing of our dirty economic underwear. The United States had run out of ways to shift money and hide the truth: we were going bankrupt. The greatest, most generous, most free nation in history was going down the tubes. And it had happened on our watch.
This got a lot of people’s attention. People who had voted, and contributed, and then gone back to sleep were awakened. First they were shocked by what was happening. Then they were angry. People who had never been to a protest were out in droves. They realized that they weren’t alone, their neighbors were angry also. Then they became determined. I call this the evolution from “Tea Party” to “Tea Power”. It is a recognition that this movement will not become a political party in the traditional sense. And it won’t be a political party, at least not in our lifetimes, because lots of people who have worked hard for this country are wide awake. They won’t settle for the party line again soon. Then people will fall asleep and the process will be repeated. We’ll leave those lessons and that story for our grandkids.
This year, the people who are elected will face a large citizenry that wants real change in how Washington works, an awakened group of patriots who want our freedoms back; they want states rights and economic liberty. They want to stop wasting treasure and lives having the US be the world policeman. They want to be left alone. Whether this Tea Power will be enough to achieve what we want this election cycle is open for discussion. We’ll see.
On November 3rd, the important work must begin in earnest. Between then and 2012, we need to evaluate and identify those we elect who stray from the path they have promised us. We will remember them in 2012. Tea Power will dominate the 2012 elections. We will be heard. As we sang on the streets in Washington, Na, na, na, na, hey, hey, hey, goodbye. We’ll remember in November, na, na, na, you’ll see.
Note I say evaluate. I chose this term consciously. I question whether we can ever really hold other mortals accountable for their actions or inaction except through the election process. After all, mortals all do sin. Pledges will be ignored and promises will be broken as this batch of politicians jockey for power. We can hope, we can watch, and we can tell the Tea Power how those we elect actually behave. This reporting should always focus on factual reality, how they vote, not what they say. We can leave the “what they said” reporting to CNN. The Tea Power is beyond really caring about what is said. We must be watchmen and report what we see. Here we will rely on the power and freedom of the internet, talk radio, and Fox News. Our precious First Amendment right to speak out and be heard must not be compromised. Ever. Any attempt to diminish or control that right must be met with prompt announcement and call to action.
Liberty Central has identified seventy-eight races we are following. We will grow our base by reporting the results of those elections. Our base will expand even more when we demonstrate that we will watch, and we will report, and we will evaluate. As our credibility grows, so the news will spread that new watchmen are on duty, and that they can be trusted. Keep the faith.
Tired of unresponsive "representatives" who do as they're told?
Governance is too important to leave in the hands of politicians. We need to hold our representatives feet to the fire. We must watch every bill, demand that they read it fully and listen to us. We must be relentless in our civic duty because we have been asleep too long.
- Bob McConnell
- Steamboat Springs, CO, United States
- I'm a conservative Republican who ran for Congress in Colorado's Third Congressional District in 2010. Though I lost the primary I gained an amazing insight into how politics works, and I met hundreds of wonderful, concerned citizens. Let's stay engaged in the mission. Write to me at email@example.com, and keep the faith.