Friday, September 17, 2010

Something is happening here, but --

-- do we know what it is?

Here's Chris "Tingle" Matthews giving his usual calm and sober assessment:

Now, actually David Corn, perhaps not surprisingly, makes the more substantial, even if obvious, point that it's quite a different matter for the Tea party insurgents to take on Democrats in a general election than establishment Republicans in primaries. So I'm not at all convinced that November will be quite the electoral upheaval that many are predicting. And if the economy turns around in the next year or so, which it may well do, then 2012 will likely see an Obama second term as well.

But regardless of short term outcomes for partisan politics, there is unquestionably something quite startling in this widespread phenomenon of non-elite outsiders suddenly breaking loose from the control of their established gatekeepers -- a phenomenon in which a comment on Facebook can have greater effect than a New York Times editorial. And this effect is working on a deeper level than party politics, a kind of tectonic level on which the parties themselves merely float. What its ultimate effect will be, of course, remains to be seen, but the Tea Party and those riding its coattails have already had an effect on the American body politic the like of which we haven't seen in some while.

Here's excitable Chris again, summing up:

T. Coddington Van Voorhees VII, though, was not taking it sitting down at his morning's grapefruit:
"Gentlemen, at long last it is time to draw a line in the sand," I announced. "For too long we have stood by idly while these insipid cretins - the Palins, the Limbaughs, the Becks - have run roughshod over our once proud party, making it a mockery and ruining our social standing, advancing the insane notion that years of Washington experience and good breeding are somehow trumped by idiotic pledges to dismantle the very government on which their very existence depends. Well, my friends, I say unto you, with this Delaware disaster they have gone a bridge too far. Today we begin the counterattack, and we will make it plain to the insurrectionists that they shan't see another dime of our inheritances."
The polite huzzahs and claps emanating from the speaker-phone indicated to me that my call to arms was striking a chord within the heart of traditional Republicanism.
Mr. Jones himself was unavailable for comment.

Thanks to Neo-neocon, NewsBusters, and Instapundit

UPDATE: See also this from A. P. Stoddard, on The Hill, "Tea Party's already won":
What debuted in nationwide protests on April 15, 2009, has taken less than 18 months to become the current driving force in American politics. The Tea Party insurgency will not only cost Democrats dozens of seats in Congress, and likely their majority — it will define the coming GOP presidential nominating process, determine the direction of the GOP for years to come and threaten any remaining plans Obama has for sweeping reforms of education, energy policy or our immigration system.

Thanks to Itzik 


  1. Meta,I agree with your take on the first Matthews clip--haven't watched the second one yet. I can see a reasonable scenario whereby Sarah Palin captures the Republican nomination. Scoff as one might at her, and I do, I do, the energy she embodies and and unlesahes and taps into can under no circumstances be gainsayed. We suffer under the Chinese curse these days: "May you live in interesting times."

  2. You know, I was going to say that those Chinese cursers were just wimps, until I came across some added curses. Turns out the one you mention is just the third and least of a sequence. The next, and worse, is "May you come to the attention of the authorities." And the number one Chinese curse of all is -- drum roll please -- "May you find what you're looking for."

  3. "gainsaid" not that other foul thing


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