Headless and leaderless, these tea party groups are
not an organized political movement so much as they are a collection of
people who generally agree on one key point: that President Obama and
the Democrats who control Congress are assaulting their civil liberties
and leading them down the wrong path.
Unfortunately, much of
what is being said and promoted appears to be scare tactics to gain
attention and attract more followers. This could possibly be the reason
why they haven't been successful with the social networks. While the 'wisdom of crowds' is sometimes discounted as "group think,"
it is a very democratic arena to take a pulse on what the majority of
folks are thinking and feeling at any point in time. However when your
voice is not being 'retweeted' by others to any great degree, one has
to wonder about the legitimacy of the voice.
was clearly evident when the National Tea Party chose a former US
representative of Colorado to open up their convention. Tom Tancredo
who ran for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination as an
anti-immigration candidate, railed against Obama and "the cult of
multiculturalism." Americans could be "boiled to death in a cauldron of
the nanny state," he said. "People who couldn't even spell the word
'vote,' or say it in English, put a committed socialist ideologue in
the White House."
When Tancredo said, "His name is Barack Hussein Obama," the audience booed loudly.
race for America is on," Tancredo said. "The president and his
left-wing allies in Congress are going to look at every opportunity to
destroy the Constitution before we have a chance to save it. So put
your running shoes on."
If people behind these fractionalized
Tea Party groups ever assemble in mass, they are going to need a lot
more than running shoes and scare tactics to get their message across
to mainstream. They are going need a concerted effort vis a vis social
networks that amplify and strengthen their message into one collective
voice. Right now, all they have is a Tower of Babel, with a lot of
nervous mice in a maze running hither and fro, speaking in tongues that
don't make a lot of sense.
I waited for 50 comments to be posted before I weighed back in here.
I probably could now write a follow-up article based on all the input
provided in the COMMENT SECTION below - and for that - I say thank you. My intention in
writing this post was not to belittle the movement, even though there
is plenty of fodder and easy pickin's to do so. My attention was
focused on analyzing why a new movement would not choose some 21st
Century tools to build their base and their communication within that
base. While some think the various "Tea Party" factions and diverse
voices are necessary to allow for an evolution of thought - I see
greater opportunity in gaining traction and credibility if you channel
your resources and bring the fold in under one tent. Some might call
this a "circus" - others might see it as controlled chaos. I favor the
latter - and so did my kids every time we visited the Big Top when they
were growing up.
Once again, thanks for the input, the feedback and the discourse - I
think it is healthy as long as we all check our emotions at the door.
Name-calling and petty bickering does not further a debate - it only
Keep up the healthy dialogue! Dave Horsey Cartoon