I have decided to become a self-appointed “junior member” of the tea party movement.
Now don’t get me wrong. There are many areas where I differ with some of the movement’s main themes. But my understanding is that the movement is “grass roots” (in spite of some corporate sponsors), still doesn’t have an official leadership structure, and that localized parts of the movement are free to support their own priorities. Members are defining the terms of their own involvement in the movement.
I’m taking that same initiative. I am now a “tea party patriot.”
I should point out that I represent the citizens of the abyss, population one, where I now hold the position of tea party president. Unlike other elements of the national movement, however, I will not be doing things like starting a web site, selling merchandise for profit (buttons, tshirts and bumper stickers) and developing my own flag. The national flag of the United States works just fine for me, thank you.
I’ll begin by enumerating my concerns as I see them:
- The federal government employs about two million people (not including the postal service.) Source.
- The number of federal employees could grow to 2.15 million people in 2010. Source.
- “Federal employees earn an average annual compensation of $106,871, including pay and benefits, compared to just $53,288 in the private sector.” Source.
Now the areas where I differ with the rest of the tea party movement:
- I don’t think this is all about Obama.
- I agree that dissent is patriotic, but I also believed it during the Bush administration.
- The first TARP happened under Bush. (Yes, I know Obama also supported it.)
- I don’t blame everything on liberals. 82% of our national debt was spent by Republicans. Source.
I have seen pictures of some of the hateful signs that have been displayed at tea party tax day protests. For my slogan, though, I wanted something edgier:
Let’s work together in good faith to make America the best it can be.
Now, when will someone show up to teach me the secret tea party handshake? 🙂