Sunday, May 02, 2010

Reading the tea leaves

Well the news was so depressing yesterday, I read a couple of hours worth of tweets and couldn't bring myself to read any more politics. Decided to work on moving into this place instead. It's not any less depressing today, but one can't avoid it forever, so Frank Rich's column about Arizona is good place to start. He rightly notes that Arizona is just the first to jump on the crazy train and there's plenty more of this insanity in our future. Ten more states are already contemplating similar legislation and some don't even have a particularly large Hispanic population.

Further, this is clearly a symptom of the GOP's greater problem with reality based politicking. The Arizona law was enacted solely by the Republicans, in fact the entire Republican caucus, and only a few less than the total caucus voted for their birther bill. The birther bill has been mercifully put down in the face of all the national attention but the larger problem remains.
It’s harder and harder to cling to the conventional wisdom that the Tea Party is merely an element in the G.O.P., not the party’s controlling force — the tail that’s wagging the snarling dog. It’s also hard to maintain that the Tea Party’s nuttier elements are merely a fringe of a fringe. The first national Tea Party convention, in Nashville in February, chose as its kickoff speaker the former presidential candidate Tom Tancredo, a notorious nativist who surely was enlisted precisely because he runs around saying things like he has “no idea where Obama was born.” The Times/CBS poll of the Tea Party movement found that only 41 percent of its supporters believe that the president was born in the United States.
In other words, the tea party is the GOP now and like an abused spouse, much as they might privately wish they could run away, they are forced to try to please their abuser for fear of being left in the street with no resources at all.

It's a strategy very likely to backfire as private, independently owned business are already feeling a swift backlash. The Arizona Hotel and Lodging Association say 19 meeting have been cancelled because of Senate Bill 1070. That comes at a cost of about $6 million to the state's coffers. One feels certain this is just the beginning. It seems likely to me that as the adverse economic impact continues to grow because of their tea party pandering, the GOP's rosy visions of 2010 gains will rapidly wilt.

[More posts daily at The Detroit News]

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Blogger Kevin McKague said...

I hated the "like" feature on Facebook when I first signed up over there, but on days like this I wish Blogger had it.

I had a bunch of stuff I was going to say, but I'm having trouble getting my thoughts onto the screen.

So, lets just say:

"Kevin McKague likes this post", and leave it at that for now.

2:52:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Thanks Kev. BTW, I was eavesdropping on your convo with Steve on Twitter about AZ. Let's just say, I "liked" it too.

4:03:00 PM  

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