Stephens Media columnist Steve Brawner tackles an interesting subject this morning as he examines the future of the TEA Party movement.
It’s a question I’ve wondered about in terms of long-term sustainability of the conservative group’s viability. In my view, its hard for a rudderless ship to stay afloat indefinitely and the TEA Party’s momentum thrives from its decentralized authority, although as Brawner notes there are plenty of forces trying to harnass its followers.
Today, the TEA Party is highly mobilized and active, but can the group’s energy be sustained? I suspect we’ll learn in due time.
Brawner explores the subject as well as other aspects of the group’s motivations and aspirations:
There is a lot of anger in this protest, much of it directed at Obama, and while it’s understandable that people are unhappy with the country’s direction, not all of this anger is helpful to their cause. Speakers would do well to talk more about the America they would like to create and spend less time bemoaning the America they are disappointed in — more “I have a dream,” less “I have a nightmare.”
Moreover, some of that anger is misplaced. Yes, Obama is no small-government conservative, but the problems that most motivate the Tea Party activists existed long before he took office a little more than a year ago. Both Democrats and Republicans have grown government and have been fiscally irresponsible for decades, often because they knew they otherwise would pay a penalty at the polls. Of course many Tea Party activists feel more connected with one party over another, but if they are just temporarily motivated Republicans anyway — or if they allow themselves to be used — then the movement won’t have staying power.
I recommend reading the full column, which you can do at this link.