Tea Party; The Decline Of The Last Resort


By Tom Tillison
Florida Political Press

It is often said that America will never fall from an external enemy, that it’s demise will come from within. Much the same can be said for the tea party movement.

Whether it’s the far left, the media or even the President of the United States attacking the tea party, it serves as a rally call and only further stiffens the resolve of those who make up this movement.

She heard about a place people were smilin’
They spoke about the red man’s way,
and how they loved the land
And they came from everywhere
to the Great Divide
Seeking a place to stand
or a place to hide

However, the same cannot be said for the slow steady drain on the integrity of this incredible awakening of the people. It began at the national level and even as those actions where being condemned by folks at the local level, so too did the emulation begin.

Today, Tea Party Patriots, Inc. is but a shell of it’s former self…a much more profitable shell, but a shell that no longer represents the heart of the movement because it lost it’s moral grounding. To many, the organization sold it’s soul to become part of the very same D.C. establishment that is widely condemned by tea party members.

Down in the crowded bars,
out for a good time,
Can’t wait to tell you all,
what it’s like up there
And they called it paradise
I don’t know why

Yet, for all the criticism of the of the leadership at TPP, the hypocrisy is staggering. Far too many at the local level who are so quick to criticize are also busy at work themselves striking relationships with media sources and politicians in a never ending quest to be seen as the ‘voice’ of the tea party. They’re not difficult to locate as you’ll often hear them speaking of ‘what’s best for the movement’. Individuals, groups and coalitions fiercely competing with one other, fearful that someone else may gain an edge – often using the same tactics quickly condemned when employed by the left.

Then the chilly winds blew down
Across the desert
through the canyons of the coast, to
the Malibu
Where the pretty people play,
hungry for power
to light their neon way
and give them things to do

Under close examination, tea party groups have come to serve as a convenient vehicle for some to propel themselves into the limelight. These GINO’s (Groups In Name Only) are often groups of one, or groups that are comprised primarily from email lists who’s member are for the most part dormant. This is a testament to just how strong the movement has become, yet this only weakens that power by removing the very thing that made the movement what it is today – we the people.

And they called it paradise
The place to be
They watched the hazy sun, sinking in the sea

And, if anything, politicians are survivalists. Once it became apparent that the tea party was a force to be reckoned with, a precious few actually embraced the movement and tried to learn from it or espoused very similar principles prior to it’s formation and simply welcomed the support. Men like Iowa Congressman Steve King.

Other politicians saw it as an unavoidable consequence, one that presented an opportunity to harness the power to advance personal ambition, with tea party leaders who are too new to the political process, too willing to be manipulated and too lost in adolescent hero worship to know or care.

Who will provide the grand design?
What is yours and what is mine?
‘Cause there is no more new frontier
We have got to make it here

We satisfy our endless needs and
justify our bloody deeds,
in the name of destiny and the name of God

The true source of strength behind the tea party movement is the numbers and the fact that it is pure and honest, from the heart. It’s average, everday folks from all across America that love their country and have finally reached the point where they will remain silent no more! That is what gave it an undeniable edge over both the political establishment and the Progressive Left in a battle that is ultimately for the very soul of this country. It is a distinct moral advantage based on common sense and personal integrity that cannot be matched!

Yet, with every sleazy backroom deal made with corporate lobbyists where the tea party name is sold to the highest bidder, or every turn of the head to excuse the inexcusable from our elected officials simply to perpetuate a relationship and the access and enhanced status it provides, that integrity takes another hit.

And you can see them there,
On Sunday morning
They stand up and sing about
what it’s like up there
They call it paradise
I don’t know why
You call someplace paradise,
kiss it goodbye

So we fast approach April 15th and tea party groups from around the country will hold Tax Day Tea Parties, just as we will here in Orlando. Great care will be taken to add household names to the line up to ensure a strong turnout. But is that turnout being sought to reach as many people as possible in this critical fight for America’s future? How much care will be taken to ensure that those in attendance walk away from these events armed with the proper knowledge and the esprit de corps to finish the job of reclaiming America?

Funny, I remember my very first tea party vividly, yet, don’t recall who spoke that afternoon because there were no celebrities and there were no politicians. What I do remember are the thousands that stood beside me and the feeling that came over me. I was not alone.