Monday, November 29, 2010

A few words about those pesky social issues

Via B-Daddy:

After a letter signed by a handful of Tea Party activists made national headlines for its request to downplay social issues like abortion, a new letter signed by Tea Party Nation leaders goes the other direction

The Tennessee-based tea party group led by National Tea Party Convention organizer Judson Phillips has a new letter and a list of action items that reflects the views of pro-life advocates.

Calling for the dismantling of the “liberal-political complex,” the new letter, addressed to Sen. Mitch McConnell and Speaker-elect John Boehner, calls for dismantling ObamaCare and its abortion-funding provisions and de-funding the Planned Parenthood abortion business.

“America is a conservative country. We expect conservative leadership,” the more than 185 tea party activists who signed this new letter say.

Last week a dozen Tea Party activists signed on to a letter to Congress urging them to abandon social issues and focus exclusively on economic matters. The letter was sponsored by the homosexual rights advocacy group GOProud.

This is unfortunate because when you start using words like "abandon" and then get the immediate blow back from social conservatives, it illustrates the failure to understand that fighting for fiscal responsibility/limited government on one hand and social conservative values on the other are not mutually exclusive ideas, in fact, they are very much intertwined.

Here's B-Daddy:

Leslie alerted me to a move by some Tea Partyers to take a turn towards social issues. I am somewhat of a social conservative, at a time when those issues are being forced to the back burner by the severity of the fiscal issues facing the country. The Tea Party has amassed an impressive coalition that has seized both the imagination of the country and many seats in state and national legislative bodies. However, those who believe that we should somehow turn to social issues, when the hard work of dealing with the fiscal crisis has not even begun are insane. Almost no progress has been made on the most pressing fiscal crisis our country has faced since the Great Depression. We cannot afford to lose any allies in this fight. Picking fights with gays, or any other group that is supporting our core issues is a costly waste.

(Side note: While fairly social conservative ourselves (strongly pro-life), we've never had much use for what we have always seen as the frivolous pursuits of some of our conservative brethren on such matters as a flag-burning amendment and school prayer, which can legitimately be viewed as government intrusion into personal matters).

B-Daddy nails it on the head. Now that we have a majority in Congress, the work of rolling back government power has only just begun. We haven't won jack squat and now is not the time to declare victory and pull out on the matters that have united the tea party coalition in the first place.

Please go to B-Daddy's link where he explains that battling back against ObamaCare, as just one example, achieves the aims of both sides in this squabble.

People need to realize that, in a sense, the tea party has been fighting for social issues all along.

At the end of the day, ask yourself one thing, tea party people: Got Frank Meyer?


steve said...

Keep up the good work. need to concentrate on the debt and deficits. If you repeal Obamacare, you should have another plan ready. There is none at present. Continue to push to have Medicare Part D overturned.


Dean said...

Steve, thanks.

Repealing Medicare Part D would be epic as it would show people that the very same party that passed it, truly did get the message about entitlement reform. However, I do not see it on the radar at this time. Shame.

As for the San Diego tea party folks, I think we're all pretty much on the same page of applying a little fusionism to kill two birds with one stone. I'm glad this little spat has gone public, though, as it affords the opportunity to educate as B-Daddy's post did in fine fashion.

Foxfier said...

I'm pissed that the folks calling for us to abandon social issues AREN'T abandoning theirs!

If I wanted to "compromise" in the manner of "we'll do it their way" why are econs/solibs any better than eclibs/socons?

Dean said...

Foxie, nothing needs to be abandoned. The goals of everybody under "the big tent" can be met, in large part, by limiting the power and reach of the government.

I'm coming to believe that the social issues are much more intractable than the issues of limited government. To wit, a court won't overturn a repeal of ObamaCare.

Foxfier said...

I wish the first idiots had SHUT UP.

Oh, wait, they've been talking about how we have to drop social issues since the last election. Before we were in as much of a mess as we're in.

The Tea Party hadn't been used to promote that special stupidity until this point, when they went "hey! Some improvement! Quickly, what can we do to sabotage the working compromise? Ooh, I know, let's attack the folks who have been on the same side and say how we're going to focus on our pet issues at the cost of theirs."

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