The nature of politics is undergoing a radical transformation. Our two party system is no longer meeting the needs of a growing number of activists. Historically, the Republican Party was able to represent the interests of right of center conservatives. With issues becoming more complex, and expectations of activists changing, this is no longer the case.
The Republican Party has a single goal…the election of Republicans. There is nothing at all wrong with this. It has a role to fill, and it fills it well.
Unfortunately, the shear number of issues being faced in the public realm today creates an increasing number of possible political perspectives. These issue differences, as well as differences in election and advocacy strategy, have begun to cause strife within the Party itself, which is not positively conducive to the Party’s goal of electing Republicans.
When there are differences on issues within the Party structure, the dissenting side is told to just be quiet for the sake of “unity”. We hear calls to an oft-misunderstood “Reagan’s 11th Commandment” which essentially translates to “thou shall not speak ill of other Republicans”. Ultimately, this serves to breed resentment among activists when there are serious differences on a policy and the strength of the Party is diminished as a result.
Issue advocacy is simply not possible within the structure of the Republican Party except for a handful of generalities. It has no power to enforce Party beliefs on elected officials who are Party members. When an elected official violates the Party platform, there is no recourse. The platform itself is flawed because there is clearly not unanimous consent on every issue found within it. Moreover, people who are actually elected to offices within the Party are forbidden from being vocal critics of elected politicians, forbidden from taking sides in primary disputes, and basically have no choice but to attempt to defend often competing visions being outlined by various elected officials.
For the sake of the Party, there must be another opportunity available for activists. There must be a way to advocate for issues that are important to the individual, even if this means taking on sitting representatives who happen to also be Republicans. There must be an organized effort to confront issue-based policy without the strings attached of being for “Republican victory at all costs”. The new reality is that Republican victory doesn’t always translate to policy victory. It has to be the right Republican…or Independent…or Libertarian, as the case may be.
Enter the Tea Party and the Liberty movement.
Frequently misunderstood, maligned, and mistreated, the “Liber-TEA” movement is the heart and soul of limited government. Issues and policy are at the forefront, not the mission of simply supporting people blindly who claim to be members. In fact, people who ran on Tea Party platforms but failed to legislate in that manner have quickly found themselves in the proverbial doghouse. (Re: Congresswoman Renee Elmers, etc)
Liber-TEA benefits from the lack of hierarchal structure. Individual groups are able to determine for themselves the issues and policies they wish to advocate. They are free to pursue activism as they see fit. More often than not, the confronted liberal policy is coming from Democrats, but there is a freedom found in being able to criticize (when necessary) members of the Republican Party who fail to represent as expected.
It needs to be made clear, the Tea Party is not against the Republican Party. Candidates supported are probably 90% Republican. Liber-TEA simply has different goals and offers an alternative venue for activism for supporters of limited government…regardless of which Party they otherwise affiliate with. It is a movement of ideas that can work seamlessly alongside existing partisan organizations, but free from their restrictions. It welcomes all who share the values associated with limited government regardless of party affiliation. It is a big tent of ideas where members are not forced to support candidates or policies simply because they affiliate with a political party.
There is freedom in supporting freedom in a non-partisan manner.
If you are tired of party politics and want a way to be active on issues that your current political party doesn’t allow you to be, then find and join a local Liber-TEA organization.
Embrace the ability to speak your mind and have an independent thought. If you are a Republican, embrace not being forced to associate with the McCains and Grahams and Romneys of the world just because they happen to wear jersey R.
Join us and let us unite, educate, and inspire people to take back this country one issue at a time.
Short URL: http://pundithouse.com/?p=15215