Saturday, August 06, 2011

Chicago Boyz » Blog Archive » Chicago Tea Party Meeting, August 3, 2011

Chicago Boyz » Blog Archive » Chicago Tea Party Meeting, August 3, 2011:

Lexington Green's take on a Chicago Tea Party meeting. I wish more UUs of a Libertarian bent would take the time to visit one of these. At least one in Chicago which is the group I know best. Dave Lowery of the NAACP is taking the time. (So did Illinois GOP's Pat Brady. I left out those clips but Pat had a hard go of it with the Tea Partiers.) Below from LG's post but please read the whole thing.

"The second speaker was a delightful surprise: David Lowery, President of the Chicago Far-South Suburban Branch of the NAACP. Mr. Lowery did not get into any policy specifics. He spoke instead about defending the rights of all Americas, now matter what color they are. He seemed to want to reach out, to meet the Tea Party and get a feel for who and what it was. Mr. Lowery was greeted very warmly both before and especially after he spoke. Since I was holding a drink in my hand (these events are held at Blackie’s, a very nice tavern) I could not take notes, and as I sit here I am struggling to recall any details of what he said. All I remember is that it was patriotic, open-hearted, and earnest, and I repeatedly got a little choked up listening to him. There is a distinctive African American style of public speaking, which is very powerful, and Mr. Lowery has it, and is a moving speaker. He was extending a hand of friendship, and that hand was grasped in return. I hope that in the future there will be a prospect for substantive cooperation between his NAACP branch and the Chicago Tea Party. The possibilities and potential are mind-blowing."

And the conclusion which is right on target.
The overall take away from the evening was about as follows:

(1) The Tea Party continues to grow, to be full of people with good ideas and energy. I hope this translates into significant and increasing political impact.

(2) The establishment GOP in Illinois is slowly and ponderously trying to figure out what this weird Tea Party thing is, and what use can be made of it, if any. Mutual wariness seems to be a pretty accurate way to describe the relationship.

(3) There is a desire among at least some African Americans for an alternative to the existing range of political choices in Illinois, which for them has been: Option A is the Democrat machine, and there is no Option B. There seems to also be a desire for a civil conversation with the Tea Party among some people, who are apparently not buying into the baseless lie about Tea Party “racism”. I don’t know where this will lead, but it is incredibly exciting.

(4) The recent budget deal is perceived by some as a victory for the Tea Party, making it credible and making Tea Party seem to be a serious factor in politics, like it or not, which is gaining in strength and importance. My sense is that the Tea Party membership is a lot more ambivalent about it, seeing the Boehner deal as more of the same old stuff, a defeat dressed as a victory. I think that is wrong. The deal was far from the needed serious reform, but serious reform cannot and will not be on the table until we get through at least one more election cycle. What the deal did accomplish was to halt the supposedly inevitable march toward higher spending and higher taxes. It put the focus on spending cuts and moving away from ever-bigger government. It means that the Obama vision of permanently bigger, more expensive and more intrusive government has been halted, for now. Like the Red Army stopping the Wehrmacht before the gates of Moscow, we are still years from a final victory. But it was the defeat of the life-threatening offensive that could have won the war at a single blow. Mr. Obama’s presidency peaked and began to slide back with the Boehner deal, I believe. It was at best an inflection point, but it may, over time, be seen as a very significant inflection point.

These are exciting times.

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