As Americans wait to hear if we will be plunging over the fiscal cliff just as we ring in the new year, I am sitting at my desk swaddled in layers of clothing. Sub-zero temperatures chill me despite central heating, so I am drinking lots of hot tea. But tea makes me think of the Tea Party. And the Tea Party starts to get my blood boiling so I may not be so cold in a few minutes.
This group of renegade representatives in Congress reminds of a child I saw in the supermarket a while back. The little boy wanted candy that his mother didn’t want him to have, so he began to cajole. Cajoling progressed to whining, whining to crying, and crying to screaming, kicking, and generally wreaking havoc on the supermarket floor. The mother didn’t give in, and eventually the boy picked himself up off the floor and behaved himself. Those of us within earshot had to endure the tantrum, but we all admired the mother’s fortitude in resisting what amounted to emotional blackmail. Next time, this child will think twice before pitching a fit.
And that is why I think of the Tea Party. These members of Congress are acting like stubborn, spoiled children. They are holding their collective breath and waiting for the rest of Congress to give up and do their bidding. I am hopeful that if they persist with their puerile stunt long enough, they will ultimately pass out. Barring that, if they continue to throw their hissy fits, perhaps their constituents might just decide to call them back to their home districts for a much-needed time-out.
The Tea Party people seem to lack both the maturity and sophistication to know that politics requires compromise. With compromise, nobody gets everything they want, but all sides usually get something.
Now to my next question: Where are the centrist members of the Republican party? Why aren’t they mentoring their junior colleagues in the way things work? Or, are they secretly hoping that they self-destruct, allowing the party to return from the outer fringes of reality and back into the mainstream?
Alice was right. This is the stupidest tea party we have ever been to.