Aug 30 2010

Douthat Gets It

Published by at 8:18 am under All General Discussions

Today’s must-read, maybe even the must-read of the entire election cycle, is by Ross Douthat at the NY Times (H/T RCP). The reason is it is a must read is because somebody finally understood what the Tea Party movement is all about, and writes about it with wondrous clarity (demonstrating Douthat’s own skill as a writer):

But after spending my Saturday at Beck’s “Restoring Honor” rally on the Washington Mall, I’m beginning to think that I underestimated the man.

Instead, Beck served up something considerably stranger. This was a tent revival crossed with a pep rally intertwined with a history lecture married to a U.S.O. telethon — and that was just in the first hour.

There was piety — endless piety, as speaker after speaker demanded that Americans rededicate themselves to God. There was patriotism: fund- raising for children of slain Special Forces vets, paeans to military heroism (delivered by Sarah Palin, among others), encomiums to the founding fathers. There was an awards ceremony on the theme of “Faith, Hope and Charity,” in which community-service prizes were handed out to a black minister, a Mormon businessman and the St. Louis Cardinals’ Albert Pujols. And since this was (as you may have heard) the anniversary of the “I Have a Dream” speech, there was a long tribute to Martin Luther King Jr.

But one could also call the day a strange, unlooked-for fulfillment of King’s prophecies: 47 years after the “I Have a Dream” speech, here were tens of thousands of white conservatives roaring their approval of its author.

It was a long festival of affirmation for middle-class white Christians — square, earnest, patriotic and religious.

It was a celebration of America’s Main Street, its right-of-center core. It is the rejection of big government and the Politvcial Industrial Complex that was created in its dark shadow. It was a reawakening of We The People. It is also the remergence of the American ‘can do’ attitude – this time aimed at dismantling the defunct and bloated federal bureaucracy which has proven itself unworthy of limitless stewardship (a.k.a. being the national nanny). It is the greenest of green shoots, ready to take out the choking weeds of progressive liberalism and replace them with the millions of individual lights. The Shining City on The Hill is about to see a revival.

23 responses so far

23 Responses to “Douthat Gets It”

  1. Terrye says:


    You can also hate Bush and be a liberal Democrat or someone playing into the hands of a liberal Democrat..

    And as for big government conservatives, what does that mean exactly? Does that mean that most Tea Party people want to get rid of medicare Part D? What other program are we talking about exactly? I don’t think so, a lot of those people at those town halls were yelling “Leave my medicare alone.” What I have heard so far is a lot of people talking about death panels in Obamacare, but if in fact they intend to cut those old folks off themselves, maybe they should tell them that up front.

    Somehow I don’t think that most Americans want that.

    And as for TARP, Beck actually supported it when it first came along, he evolved you see…however presidents can not do that..often as not they have to make decisions and hope they are the right ones, unlike talk show people who just talk. But even the money spent by Bush then has been paid back by now and it is not a fraction of what the Democrats have piled on.

    You see this is what bothers me about Beck, I do not trust him. I am sorry, I just don’t. He will pander to Reagan’s memory…Reagan who took the national debt from 1 trillion to 3 trillion and who supported amnesty..because he knows what it would do to his ratings to go after him like he does Bush. In fact I can remember in 1979 when Reagan support the North America accords, he was idealistic in that way and wanted to see open commerce and movement across all borders. If Bush had supported something like that Beck would have had a hissy fit. But Reagan, well that is different.

    So yeah, I am not saying that a lot of Tea Party people are not just plain unhappy with everyone in government…I am saying that I think Beck has an agenda and he is using a grass roots movement to further that agenda and as far as he is concerned, it is all about him.

    And btw, most of the spending done in recent years was not by Bush or Delay or any other Republican, it was done by the Democrats running government right now. Those socalled big government Republicans were downright frugal compared to these guys.

  2. Terrye says:

    Speaking of Bush…Ohio, Bush 50 Obama 42

  3. Terrye,

    Richard Nixon was a prime example of a big Government conservative.

    He established the EPA!

    And he ratified and expanded the Welfare State LBJ started.

    Tea Party small government conservatives want to disestablish Obamacare as their first goal.

    Medicare part D is unsustainable with the rest of the medicare system.

    It will be changed.