“First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win.” – Mahatma Gandhi

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Thoughts on Brown, Romney, conservatism, the Tea Party movement & progressives...

I supported Scott Brown. Not because I thought he was going to save the Republican Party, the conservative ideology or do what I thought he should do. I supported him for a number of reasons.

- I thought anyone who'd put an "R" next to their name would be better than the "D" alternative.
- I liked the idea of putting an R in a Kennedy seat.
- I thought he'd vote more in line with how I'd vote as compared to the alternative.
- I liked some of the things he had to say.

On the flip side, I didn't think he was the "outsider" or the true conservative choice. However, given the state and the mind-set of his constituents I felt he was about as conservative as we'd be able to expect or hope to elect. He had a voting record and I would have voted no on some things he supported, yes on others he didn't.

There isn't anyone in Congress I would walk in lock-step with regarding their votes, how they handle things or even what they have to say in many cases.

Would I have preferred a true-blue conservative? Absolutely.

Am I going to work hard to make sure that the next person elected is more conservative than Brown? Absolutely.

Am I going to tar and feather the man? Nope. From what I can see he didn't lie to anyone, he didn't promise anything he hasn't delivered. He's been pretty up front about how he's going to vote.

I think we are at a critical, critical point in the direction of the Tea Party movement. We can't let a really, really bad vote by Brown cause us to pack up our bags and head to the hills. We learn. We don't get caught up in the hype. We do our homework on the next elections. We hold the Republican, Democrat, Independent, Libertarian candidate's feet to the fire. We research.

We need a Tea Party & / or Conservative questionnaire that we ask all candidates to answer. We need a Tea Party / Conservative pledge that we get candidates to sign. I know a lot of this is being worked on already.

A whole lot of people much smarter, and much more connected, than I are working on many things that should allow us to hang together better and to look deeper at those who are asking for our votes.

I'm not a strong supporter, or maybe even a lukewarm supporter of John McCain. There are things I like about him and things I really do not like about his votes and actions. I can understand Sarah Palin supporting him. Most of the world would not know who she was if McCain hadn't taken a chance on her. Yes, I firmly believe his choice garnered him a huge number of votes and that he wouldn't have been a contender without her so the score is somewhat even. However, I'd probably do the same if I were in her shoes.

Ditto on Scott Brown. Although the luster is gone and he's no longer feeling the love from conservatives, he owes a lot to John McCain.

Mitt Romney? To me it's politics as usual and I'm sick of politics as usual. I am looking for someone who isn't caught up in the game.

We're out here fighting a long history of not just "progressive" infiltration of both parties, but the power structure that is Washington D.C. We are naive if we think that a one-year movement is going to shake up the system to the extent that will give us a politics that is honorable and above self-serving power-hungry politics as usual.

It's going to take a long, long, long, long time and a whole heck of a lot of effort. We are going to have failures and we're going to make mistakes. If we stay true to our principles we can make a difference. We will prevail if we keep our spirits up and stand together, stand strong.

Don't give up just because Brown, Romney and friends aren't doing what you want them to do. Fight harder. Work harder.

And, one more caution: there are those in the Republican and Democratic parties who do NOT want the Tea Party ideals to prevail. We are being attacked, they are trying to divide and conquer and we can not let that happen. Don't let the little things divide. Don't get caught up on the big things either. I'm talking about the social principles that are so important to many of us. Yes, abortion, traditional marriage, our faith and other issues are critical and we need to focus and do what we can to promote our beliefs. However, that is not what the Tea Party movement is all about. We have to take care of the foundation first and re-build a country that allows us to tackle those issues peacefully, thoughtfully and prayerfully.

OK, I know I'm just one little drop of water in this huge country, in the conservative support system. There's absolutely no reason that anyone should listen or take to heart anything I wrote. It works for me, hopefully it'll resonate with some of you, too.

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