Skip to comments.How We Killed the Tea Party
Posted on 08/14/2016 6:44:48 AM PDT by fluorescence
Greedy PACs drained the movement with endless pleas for money to support conservative causes and candidates. I worked for one of them. But Tea Party ideas live on.
As we watch the Republican Party tear itself to shreds over Donald Trump, perhaps its time to take note of another conservative political phenomenon that the GOP nominee has utterly eclipsed: the Tea Party. The Tea Party movement is pretty much dead now, but it didnt die a natural death. It was murderedand it was an inside job. In a half decade, the spontaneous uprising that shook official Washington degenerated into a form of pyramid scheme that transferred tens of millions of dollars from rural, poorer Southerners and Midwesterners to bicoastal political operatives.
What began as an organic, policy-driven grass-roots movement was drained of its vitality and resources by national political action committees that dunned the movements true believers endlessly for money to support its candidates and causes. The PACs used that money first to enrich themselves and their vendors and then deployed most of the rest to search for more prospects. In Tea Party world, that meant mostly older, technologically unsavvy people willing to divulge personal information through petitionswhich only made them prey to further attempts to lighten their wallets for what they believed was a good cause. While the solicitations continue, the audience has greatly diminished because of a lack of policy results and changing political winds.
I was an employee at one of the firms that ran these operations. But nothing that follows is proprietary or gleaned directly from my employment. The evidence of the scheming is all there in the public record, available for anyone willing to look.
The Tea Party movement began building in the George W. Bush years. Profligate spending and foreign adventurism ...
(Excerpt) Read more at politico.com ...
Remember when all those Tea Party candidates made all those promises and we voted for them?
Well the joke was on us. :)
Now go pay your taxes, someone has too. LOL! :)
The problem with anti-establishment political movements is that there are only 2 paths available to them:
they either start winning, which means they become part of the establishment
or they don’t, which means they never accomplish anything but they keep feeling good and pure
The Tea Party won. And now they hate their biggest electoral victory.
The IRS helped the GOPe in marginalizing the TEA Party, but its death is greatly exaggerated. Wait until November to see if it really died, or simply went underground.
While the idea of a formal “Tea Party” has largely been subsumed by scam artists (my personal example is Tea Party Patriots and Jenny Beth Martin, BTW), the SENTIMENT that drove the rush to capitalization of the movement is NOT dead.
We’ve gotten smarter, us Tea Party sentiment proponents, the one big mistake that liberals make is that the failures and peccadillos of formal Tea Parties of multiple flavor HAS NO IMPACT on that underlying prevailing sentiment.
You liberals and bluster and bloat how these formal “Tea Parties” flounder or fail, but you mistake that for the underlying sentiment, AND IT WILL BE YOUR DOWNFALL.
I have a historical analogy. The politics are completely different, but I think it’s meaningful.
In 1905, Russia had a revolution. There was a guy named Lenin involved, but the revolution didn’t succeed. Kind of like the Tea Party.
But about a decade later, there was a second attempt. In 1917 the Bolshevik revolution changed everything in Russia and put Lenin in power.
I consider Trump a good Conservative. He is not a Bolshevik or a Liberal. But he is the second coming of the Tea Party.
And I think he will change everything. I’m hoping.
” What was left of the Tea Party split for a while between Trump and, while he was still in the race, Ted Cruz, who was backed by Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder and national coordinator of the Tea Party Patriots. In 2014, the Tea Party Patriots group spent just 10 percent of the $14.4 million it collected actually supporting candidates, with the rest going to consultants and vendors and Martins hefty salary of $15,000 per month; in all, she makes an estimated $450,000 a year from her Tea Party-related ventures. “
Millions of us are hoping and praying shoulder to shoulder with you. God Bless America, again.
I’m not reading any Politico tripe, but this statement is absolutely accurate:
“...the spontaneous uprising that shook official Washington degenerated into a form of pyramid scheme that transferred tens of millions of dollars from rural, poorer Southerners and Midwesterners to bicoastal political operatives. “
You can add in groups like “Oath Keepers” in there as well.
And the kicker is that it’s the right’s own damn fault. Our general laziness when it comes to activism made it easy for people over here to just instead foist money to whatever group had any type of word like freedom, liberty, constitution, minuteman, and tea party in their name or made the usual pitch about “christian values” and “founding fathers”, after they all but promised they would do the hard work so that you wouldn’t have to give up your free time to defend your liberty.
What these groups did, because many of them had no idea what they were doing, consisted of making sure they got a good salary from the donations, and then paid lobbyists to supposedly make magic happen in DC.
The donator got a monthly “newsletter” detailing how the “fight is on” but “dark forces continue to battle”, and they need just a bit more money to make the final push.
Rinse and repeat until the executive boards of these groups are all very wealthy, have shown no real results, and have all moved on to consulting jobs. Likely to teach others how to run the same scam.
The tea party groups are now all shells, run by nobodies, and are completely broke because no one believes in them anymore.
I remember how I once got a phone solicitation from someone representing the Republican party asking for donations. He could barely speak English. I figured this was no Republican and it was likely a scam.
Does anyone else think there are a lot of half-truths in this article?
It seems to me that the illegal IRS suppression probably had a major impact. The author mentions it, but just enough so no one can say he omitted it. Then he says or implies that all the donations to Cruz and Trump were in hope that they would lose. What??!
While the information reported here about the misdeeds of (mainly conservative-sounding) PACs is useful, this article just seems to me to be more “Politico” propaganda, to discourage and dis-enthuse potential Trump voters.
Ron Jonson US Senator WI is a prime example
The Tea Party is still around. People are more likely to donate money directly to a candidate these days instead of to a PAC.
The Tea Party is not dead.
Some of the money-making scams bearing the name may be but many of us original Tea Party people are still out here looking to reduce government.
Oh, and in my district, we Cantorized our weasel, Eric Cantor.
It is a shame that more districts did not follow our example.
” ... the SENTIMENT that drove the rush ... is NOT dead.
Weve gotten smarter, us Tea Party sentiment proponents, ...
... the underlying sentiment, AND IT WILL BE YOUR DOWNFALL.”
Sentiments are one thing. Results are something else. Unless someone can divine how to move from the former, to organizations capable of producing the latter, we will not succeed.
Worse, if we insist sentiments are sufficient, and that every step on any path to results must be scorned, we will not merely fail, we will self-destruct.
No action to date indicates anyone in the movement has become smarter. But it can be argued that many have gotten a lot grumpier.
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