Where is it now? Five years ago CNBC’s Rick Santelli, God love him, went off on an on-air rant and started a movement. Only in America. Where are all the people who organized and worked and helped take the House of Representatives from Nancy Pelosi? Some of these organizations are still around, but I don’t think the movement is anything near to what they used to be. Where is the energy, the determination to do something, to try and take the country back from the statists who are so disdainful of the Constitution and the tradition of American liberty? Are these people discouraged, worn out, disillusioned, or what?
I didn’t follow the Tea Party that closely. But I never heard them talk about Article V. Like most professional politicians, they had no idea what it was, and what it was for. It’s too bad. Article V and the Tea Party were made for each other, a match made in heaven. Article V is where the Framers gave power to the people. But that power must be exercised through their state legislatures.
These legislators, with few exceptions, have their finger on the public pulse. They spend some time every year, or every other year, in their Capitol, but the vast majority are not professional politicians, or even lawyers. They’re ranchers and teachers and real estate agents. They have normal lives and are members of their communities just like everybody else. They go to church, PTA meetings, and ball games. They’re close to the people they represent. They listen.
Biddulph and the rest of the Task Force want the Tea Party to turn out on April 15th at the South Carolina and Oklahoma Capitols. Those legislatures are balking at passing our bill, and need to know it has the support of their voters. Think of all the work the Tea Party has done. Some of it paid off, a lot of it didn’t. Now they have a chance to do something really big, change the direction of the country not with laws, or elections, but with the Constitution that they all love.
It’s a matter of communication, of course. If they knew, and understood, how this all worked I have no doubt they would rejuvenate themselves and join the fray. I’m convinced this will happen, and soon. It makes too much sense not to. Perhaps the Reagan Project has a role to play. We’re working on it.
Apropos of nothing, here’s story for you. I’m a freshman at Cal in 1962, and a big conservative. I ordered a Barry Goldwater sweatshirt from National Review and wore it a lot to class. I’d sit in the middle of the front row of Wheeler Hall looking at this socialist lecture me in Political Science 101. There were like 600 students in the class. It was a complete waste of time. I learned nothing.
I wore it to my Speech class too, but it only had about 30 students. I didn’t quite understand what I was supposed to learn in it when I signed up for it. At the end of the semester I still didn’t know. It was all horseshit. The Professor was a twitty little bastard, and I could tell he didn’t like my sweatshirt. So one day, as an exercise in the art of speech that he was teaching us, he goes off on Goldwater. He said, “What do we really know about anybody? Take Barry Goldwater. What do we really know about him? We know he’s from Arizona, where he’s the senior United States Senator…..” At this point I interrupt him, and say, “Actually, he’s the junior Senator from Arizona.” I was probably smirking at him when I said it. I was kind of a cocky kid. He really didn’t like that.
The son of a bitch gave me a “D”. I never was much of a student.