Requiem for the Tea Party

The thinking of the Tea Party was co-opted the moment it started being called a Tea Party. But the original ideas hatched and awakened simultaneously in 37 states after NH state rep Dan Itse proposed a Jeffersonian states-rights defense against federal overreach. Might have been better had he never done that Glenn Beck interview. A maturing framework for this will, as Texas Governor Rick Perry said, take Governors, not Congressmen. And it will take longer. Philosophically it is simple. You have to be a Texan before you can be an America. You have to be a New Englander before you can be an American. But we lose our earthly bearings and proportions when we detach from our place, and live exclusively in the abstraction. We hover over ourselves as if in a UFO. Now China begins with the UFO delusions. But Israel begins to finds itself again on its piece of earth. Germany as well.

Change will be driven by economics, not speeches, particularly the dawning realization that the well off agrarian states in the center of the country are now being asked to support the welfare states on the edge.

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What will Ron and Rand Paul do now?

On the David Asman show Wednesday night Ron Paul was asked what plans he and son Rand had for the new term. He said they had talked about entering legislation together in the Senate and the House on the first day. Half joking, Ron Paul said his son suggested legislation to “end the Fed.”

I think it was St. Paul or maybe Kurt Cobain who said, “There is no such thing as a joke.” They might think of doing just that. Certainly it would not pass, but it would set a benchmark allowing them to graph progress from now into the future.

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The end of two flavor political parties

For well more than a century, Americans have had the choice like that in an old general store I used to go to in rural West Virginia with a swinging sign that read, “ice cream, guns and ammo.” The ice cream came in two flavors, vanilla and chocolate. That has been our choice in political parties as well. As of November 2, there will be a new flavor: Libertarian. It is already there. It has fully metabolized into the mainstream. Although not a Libertarian, Sarah Palin is the La Passionara of this new awakening and Ron Paul, banned from the discussion in 2008, the Gray Champion. At first, that is when she was being called a slut by David Letterman and regularly mocked by Tina Fey, the eagle-eyed op-ed writers of the NYTs sounded a clarion. One of their most capable, the one who lives abroad, said it recalled to him those bad days when the broody earth spirits began to arise in the gnostic German heart. I am sure he was not talking about the Moravians. But today, in only two years, we are merely considered “extremists.” Now that is pilgrim’s progress.

I think psychiatrists call this binary state “undifferentiated.” It is like the first division of an embryo: Ford and Chevy. I think it represents the most generic form of the creation or an early form which will eventually evolve and become multifaceted and full like the rest of the world and the people will become whole. Two cars, Ford and Chevy, two ice creams. Two political parties. Those were your choices. And they were both more or less the same. Back then you couldn’t find a pizza anywhere in North Carolina outside of Chapel Hill. And shrimp with lobster sauce in a Chinese restaurant in Milledgeville, Georgia, home town of Flannery O’Connor, consisted of chipped beef on Rice Krispies. Now you could probably get sushi and study Aikido there. There are all kinds of cars, foods and ice cream today, but politics is still vanilla and chocolate, Democrat and Republican. Next week brings the end of two flavor politics.

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The pig is dead

The great anthropologist Joseph Campbell said one of the legendary moments in the spirit life of America was when the Lakota shaman, Black Elk, turning and pointing north to northwest, said to the poet Flaming Rainbow, “There is the center of the world.” Then he said, “but wherever you are is the center of the world.” He might have been right the first time, because Black Elk’s Dakotas are awakening. Just as the rest of us up here in the northeast seem to be falling into a deep post-industrial slumber.

This current recession in no way resembles the Great Depression when “world economy” basically consisted of England, Germany and the U.S. as historian Niall Ferguson has been saying. Much of the world is not in recession and they will grow at the disadvantage of others. Germany is doing well and Brazil is at 7%. China and Germany are creditor nations and as Jim Rogers says, the U.S. is now the “greatest debtor nation in history.” But for our purposes here in the Land of the Free, we can see that the U.S. economy is REGIONALIZING in this recession. The red states are bountiful with commodities and agricultural products and are generally very healthy. There is, says Rogers, “a definite shift from financial centers to the producers of real goods.” One size government no longer fits all in politics and in economy. In a word, blue is on the wane, red is on the rise. And the post-industrial urban blue asks – demands – a pension from the rural and agricultural red.

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The American Anti-President and the New Federalism

It is increasingly clear now that the American anti-president simply doesn’t understand that governance is not a world soccer match in which everyone gets a little trophy from their mother; that when he stands shoulder-to-shoulder with Mexican President Felipe Calderon and a bunch of degenerate rock stars in opposition to Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, he is building a global coalition to war against an American state; that when he listens to the ignorant, criminal, drug-induced and woman-hating lyrics of Lil Wayne and Jay-Z (“. . . get a crate, some crack and some house slippers . . .”) on his IPod he is endorsing and advancing to the most viral form of nihilism post-war has yet seen and it is destroying black America. That he simply doesn’t understand his job when Texas Governor Rick Perry, in the war with Mexico which has just claimed another American life, says: “Frankly, these two presidents (Calderon and President Barack Obama) need to get together with their secretaries of state and say, ‘What are we going to do about this?'” That he simply would not know the right thing to do and so will do nothing. Then he will give a speech.

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Will Hillary kill us all?

The list of federalist incompetencies is spiraling the country down the drain: Health care, Medicare, a broken dollar, a 13 trillion dollar deficit, Katrina, Arizona, Afghanistan, Blagojevich. The turning began when Bill Clinton turned a prefect failure of a presidency into a cult movement of himself by having kinky sex with an undergraduate in the Oval Office. It was a Dada masterpiece. His generation understood. As an act of political nihilism Jean Genet could not have topped it. Clinton was the first rock and roll president.

After all the bribes and lies and continuing undergraduate squalor, that he and his wife are still in the public eye is testimony to our inability to govern ourselves any longer with clarity and character. As First Lady, Hillary Clinton’s health care debacle was historic. She has been a perfect failure as Secretary of State having presided over the fatal alienation between America and the world’s two original sources of human awakening: Israel and China. But now, Hapsburg-style family politics and no-fault governance continues as she is mentioned for Secretary of Defense. She could get us all killed.

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Free California

California’s fate today begins to suggest that of Tibet. It is a free and independent place with its own unique culture and vital life force, and its will is clear. But self governance is quashed by autonomous and arbitrary magistrates thousands of miles away.

Here is a proposed amendment for the fledgling California constitutional convention: “No one should judge Californians but Californians. The California Supreme Court is the supreme court in the land. Citizens of any sex, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation or religious persuasion or lack thereof can be California Supreme Court justices provided that they were born in the state and graduated from a California law school. (Law schools from Massachusetts, Connecticut and London don’t count. Different traditions, different culture, different values.)

The California Supreme Court’s ruling is the final appeal and the supreme law of the land. It can only be overturned by a majority vote in a state referendum.” Because freedom is not free and it must be taken because it is never given.

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The burden of Northern history

There has been a spate of books on America’s presumed decline in recent days. Most now and ever before compare with the rise and fall of Rome. I’ve always thought we should be compared with two empires, Rome and Athens. Or better yet, Rome and Constantinople, equal and opposite cultural counter-forces for at least 1,000 years. But ours are red and blue and their capitals are New York City and Dallas.

This division was identified by Henry James in the late 1800s. “The Bostonians,” which might be seen as visionary today, contrasted the radical feminist and reformer, Olive, with the Southern cousin Basil, who dines with “a six-shooter and a bowie knife.” When asked, “Don’t you care for human progress?” he answers, “I don’t know — I never saw any.”

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Citizenship and the man-child president

I was turned against federalism by two things. First, when I’d walk up to get my first-grader after school in the neighborhood of Duke University in Durham, N.C., I had to keep my hand on my 3-year-old, to keep the students from touching her. They were not bad kids, but they were nervous and erratic because their mothers were addicted to heroin when they were born. The second was the president. Although I had voted for him twice, it appeared to be a mother/child relationship he had with Hillary. Lots of men — especially artists and musicians — have that because it works for them. But when it became approved by a good majority it seemed we had gotten to the end of the difficult work we started back in 1776.

The first was failure on a catastrophic scale. The nervous students had no chance. No doubt many of them are dead already. Except for my kids and maybe three others, the students were all black. The white liberals in the neighborhood, most of whom worked or taught at Duke, would try to get their kids in the “AG” classes in the public school, which contained only two or three students. If they didn’t get in, they’d send them to private schools.

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