The Liberal Left invested a lot of time and effort in pushing back against the Tea Party demonstrations yesterday and as Lori, Michael and Kim have noted the pushback has been consistent in one respect: the Left won't engage on the real issues so it must >marginalize the participants. Unable to defend the record level of spending, deficits and usurpation of private sector rights by Obama and his Congress the Left finds itself fully invested in the kook argument , which serves only as a diversion. The Strawman Argument of The Year goes to this genius who managed to pull Eugene McCarthy into the discussion of yesterday's Tea Parties (complete with the "neo" prefix just to make sure all the leftwing panic buttons were sufficiently pushed).
Why is the Left so consumed with this Tea Party movement if, as they say, Obama's popularity and approval is at record levels and they control both houses of Congress? Why do they protest so much about these conservative/libertarian protests? Why do they invoke the history of McCarthy in their critique and shamelessly label the protest movement "teabagging", thus relegating their collective vernacular to that of the scatological mindset common among teenage morons? Perhaps it's because so many of these commenters have nothing better to offer.
The Tea Party movement, and more importantly, the reaction of the Left to it, has reminded many people of the shallowness of the Obama phenomena. Consider that it was only eighteen months ago that the prevailing wisdom was that the election was Hillary's to lose. The Obama adulation, the genuflecting media and the aura of The One were but a glimmer in David Geffen's eye. In its stead was a soberer electorate that (even amongst supporters) viewed the favorite (Hillary) with a critical eye and a healthy degree of skepticism. Also unforeseen was any type of truly cataclysmic financial event that would concentrate power in the hands of a few amidst a perfect storm of insolvency and negative GDP growth.
The Tea Party movement, to borrow Ben Bernancke's phrase, is but an indication of the first "green shoots" of fiscal sanity to emerge after an intoxicated winter spending binge of epic proportions. That the movement lacks a recognizable political personality is of little consequence. Think not? Then consider where the central organizing political personality of the Left was two or three years ago. He was a community organizing, "present" voting, machine politician in Chicago. Seems like a long time ago but it wasn't. As I have noted before, the Obama phenomena manifests many of the signs of a bubble. This is why the left became hysterical in the run-up to the Tea Party demonstrations. They are encountering an effective, principled opposition to the Obama Bubble. These conservative/libertarian organizing principles were absent in the McCain campaign, evidenced by the candidate receiving two million fewer votes than George Bush gathered in 2004. It is apparent that the Obama administration witnessed the first signs of an organized opposition to the Left yesterday. What is more telling is the degree to which leftwing hysteria has become a counter indicator of the resurgence of conservative principles.