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Tea Party: maybe crazy, definitely winning

In her Sunday New York Times column on the debt ceiling business, Maureen Dowd points out the many ways in which the Tea Party is succeeding:

Consider what the towel-snapping Tea Party crazies have already accomplished. They’ve changed the entire discussion. They’ve neutralized the White House. They’ve whipped their leadership into submission. They’ve taken taxes and revenues off the table. They’ve withered the stock and bond markets. They’ve made journalists speak to them as though they’re John Calhoun and Alexander Hamilton.

Obama and John Boehner have been completely outplayed by the “hobbits,” as The Wall Street Journal and John McCain called them.

Dowd is right to highlight how the Tea Partiers in Congress are setting the agenda. It's interesting that she, like many others, still refers to them as "crazies". For a long time, liberals have dismissed the Tea Party as lunatics, and refused to answer the Tea Party's basic points about government spending, taxes and the constitution. But if the Tea Party types are crazy, what does that make Obama and the Democrats? How pathetic are you if you can't politically win against a small group of supposed loonies?

You can call the Tea Party crazy, but right now they are winning. And a good part of the reason why liberals condemn them as backward is because they have strong beliefs, and they expose the liberals for their lack of principle. Agree or disagree with the Tea Partiers, but they do stand for something and are sticking to their guns. What do Obama and the Democrats believe in? "Compromise"?  

I realize the Tea Party is far from winning the war : if the US does default, it's easy to see how they could get the blame. But up to now they've been the ones calling the shots, and they've made both Obama and Boehner look flat-footed.

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