I was watching one of those vacuous cable shows this last weekend, the kind the media foist on the populace as cutting-edge informative journalism. You know them: everyone on the panel carefully reflective and poised, silly close-up grins at the introduction, panelists projecting those rehearsed almost constipated expressions that are meant to convince viewers that they are not really constipated, but deeply concerned. And the interaction is always accompanied with mild, challenging, but polite debate; followed by gratuitous moments of spontaneous levity, usually initiated by the host to ease the seriousness of the segment’s world-shattering discourse. And all of this is carefully choreographed in the studio: images of D.C.’s monuments floating and flying dramatically across the screen in sparkling 3D, while pulsating news-sounding music echoes the start or finish of each segment, providing a necessary cue for viewers and panelists alike to answer nature’s call or grab a snack before the next “riveting” sequence resumes.
And every segment deals only with the most current issue: video of God’s oil pouring out of God’s seabed, the accompanying questions of how could any tragedy (man made or otherwise) ever occur in this world, how to prevent any others from ever occurring again, how soon can everything be just as it was before, and can we find a way to blame Bush, and if not Bush, then an oil company; photos of Obama finally at the beach, fingering sandy oil balls with green resolve etched for the cameras on his forehead; this followed by a longer segment than necessary on some Hollywood human miscreant, recently passed away unexpectedly, with the required recap of all of his tortured, meaningless, gory, profane-laced movies to which we should all reflexively genuflect. The moderator afterwards stoically reminds the viewers how “we” will all miss the deceased for his unique drug-plagued contribution to the arts and to the bettering of our human condition! (No mention, however, is ever made of soldiers who died fighting for our country that week; but, hey, our glitz and glamour heroes and heroines must never be forgotten!)
And so on goes the predictable media template: the news hour’s panel sound bites never reaching any consensus of wisdom, prognostications prognosticated, and every panel member expert, as well as the moderator, hawking their new books, each soon to be number one on the New York Times Bestseller List. Get your copy now!
But eventually the cable-news show comes ‘round to a Tea Party segment for the panel to dissect: the moderator postulating with gravity what might develop if Tea Party candidates actually succeeded in replacing more than a few politicians from both parties in Congress this November (which seems likely)? Without even a pause, as soon as the question is posed, a wide-eyed animated talking head immediately retorts to the moderator that this could be a national disaster in the making, since as any fool could recognize—Tea Party candidates are mere novices where governance is concerned, and could not possibly have the basic skills required to work their way through the labyrinth of laws and regulations that only a “professional” politician with his trusty “professional” staff could negotiate. You see, it takes a lot of time and practice to learn how to squeeze the flesh, slap backs, kiss babies, and lie effectively on camera to your constituents; while, at the same time, succor cash form anyone and everyone, and all the while, smile, smile, smile. This balancing act is absolutely not something you want to try at home on your own! There is real sophistication required in this career field; a law degree being but the first essential item to which a Tea Party candidate should attach oneself, particularly if they want to become proficient in the art of obfuscation. And this is all part and parcel of being a professional “inside the Beltway” politico, boys and girls. And positively don’t minimize being properly quaffed and collegiate in one’s regalia for every photo-op. Appearance is everything, substance is time consuming! Wouldn’t want anyone to mistake you for the Plebeian class, no dirt under the fingernails in this business. The closest a real professional will get to dirt after all is the dedication shovel for the ground breaking ceremonies one is required to pose for now and then.
So my initial reaction to this media moron’s comment was as you can expect not very biblical. After reaching for the powder horn, I suppressed my visceral reaction, and saved my plasma screen from the ravages of a .69 caliber musket ball. (I use powder only at re-enactments by the way!) But, my incredulity was exceeded only by the burning in my face! Can no one in government or the “informed” media realize what’s happening in front of their faces? Are these folks lemmings? Do they not understand that everyday Americans (at least those that pay taxes), regardless of party affiliation, are fed up with professional politicians of every stripe? Can they not see that the permanent privileged political class, those that have been feathering their own beds and selling out the majority in this country for nigh on 60 years are not wanted any longer, are actually despised? Now, this is a “real change” the majority can believe in. No, it’s a revolution! And it’s happening everywhere across the country.
The only follow-up question I wished to ask the pointy-headed media panel pundit (after replacing my powder horn on the wall) was who do you think gave this country the $13 trillion worth of debt that is killing us, our children, and bankrupting every State in the Union? It certainly wasn’t the “amateurs!” It wasn’t the Tea Party folks who have ridden rough-shod over our “four-page” Constitution, or created the tax labyrinth that not even an IRS official can fathom (or for that matter a Secretary of the Treasury to find ways to avoid). It wasn’t the Tea Party supporters that made offshore drilling regulations which forced oil companies to drill so deep in the ocean that they can’t even “plug the hole” as our CEO Messiah of the United States commanded. A submarine can even reach that depth your Majesty! (He’s real good at the commanding part!) Nor was it Tea Party bumpkins who brought the economy tumbling down by pressuring banks to lend sub-prime mortgages to unqualified buyers everywhere. We didn’t even have “oversight” of Fannie and Freddie, while also receiving huge contributions for political campaigns. It wasn’t the Tea Parties that created bridges and airports to nowhere. It wasn’t us, unwashed poltroons, who have destroyed our educational system, hyphenated our American nationality for votes, left the borders open for terrorism and crime, placed our future liberty at the mercy of the highest foreign financial bidder, or replaced the father in minority families in exchange for government largess—ironically called “welfare”. This is only a partial list of complaints I cite. Read the “Declaration of Independence” and notice how similar “professional politicians” resemble the former oppressors of the Crown. (You don’t want to get another “declaration” from “We the People” now do you, Congress?)
So maybe, just maybe, “professionals” are not the solution. Perhaps they are the “whole” problem, and have been for many years; creating a vast bloated federal bureaucracy with departments and agencies our founders never envisioned; taking away the rights of the sovereign States and the people, rights so clearly laid out in our founding document—the Constitution; so that even an amateur Tea Party buffoon, like myself, could reasonably understand its heavy machinations. And no lawyer required! How about a citizen legislature with no perks? You just go, serve, and then go back home! I like this!
The Tea Parties are not going away! We will demand that our Constitution be obeyed, that it be taught in our schools (as well as the founders who wrote and signed it), and that it be restored to the absolute “center” of all government actions. For anyone coming new to the political world, running for office in the future, you better read this document, understand its simplicity, then follow it carefully. The Tea Parties have nothing better to do than hold legislators accountable for breaking their oaths to it.
So for you with eyes to see and ears to hear, this little parade of amateurs is just getting started. And if the career “professionals” could make such a mess out of this great Nation, do you really think for a moment that the “non-professionals” could do any worse? They are the ones after all who know how to balance a check book day to day; say “no” to their excessive wants when they can’t afford them; do real productive work; pay the exorbitant taxes; fight the wars; and feed, clothe, and house their families without handouts from stuffy bureaucrats.
The Tea Parties have only one thing to tell the government professionals and the media elites—“It’s the Constitution Stupid!”
William Temple is a historical re-enactor, a pastor of a Bible church in Brunswick, Ga., and a well-known figure at Tea Party events across the country.