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Why the Tea Party is Raising American Awareness…and Intelligence [OP ED]

Dave Brat

Tea Party candidate Dave Brat unseats Rep. Majority Leader Cantor in Virginia primary

The Tea Party is part of the solution to the problem that  disillusioned Americans have been complaining about for decades…a viable alternative to the two party political system. It is a testament to the ingenuity and purity (not to mention popularity) of its principles that last night the little known, underfunded candidate, Dave Brat unseated Republican giant, Eric Cantor, the House Republican Majority Leader from Virginia in the primary. The margin of victory was 12%.

The Tea Party is partially the Republican Party reinventing and cleansing itself and part grass-roots movement. However, often it has been painted as an extremist movement by both Democrats and Republicans who wish to preserve the status quo and maintain a lock on their political monopolies, and control the hearts and minds of voters with an electoral process that has become so bastardized and corrupt, it bears little resemblance to an acceptable civil exercise any longer. The American Political system is seriously ill and the Tea Party is part of the cure. This is not a Tea Party endorsement, it is a sobering fact, just ask Eric Cantor.

Too often (it is now the norm rather than the exception),  I see on social media such as  Facebook an increasing majority of people posting ridiculous cartoons or sarcastic depictions of political issues to express their emotions and raise an emotional reaction to the Tea Party. Not only about the Tea Party, but about each other (democrats and republicans). Lying and using nasty, slanderous remarks about political opponents has completely replaced an open and robust discussion of the issues in America.

Americans have lost their ability to have civil, meaningful discourse about political issues. It is taboo to have an adult conversation about politics in many aspects of American life. This is near insanity! Try to post a serious discussion about a political issue on a social media site and it will be met often with ridicule, scorn or marginalizing satire. Another response (from the 47% of the population) would prefer to close their eyes and allow others to make their decisions. These are the folks that post 99% of the cat pictures and satirical cartoons, rarely an original thought. These are the folks who even marginalize political discussion. How many times have you heard someone suggest that political conversations are inappropriate on social media? Or in a conventional, in-person, social environment? That is one of the most ignorant and dim-witted statements I have heard and it is the reason politicians are in a race to the bottom on integrity and ethics.

When you see someone whose only intellectual outlet on social media is posting cartoon images with someone else’s propaganda on it, question their intelligence. If you see someone decrying the use of social media to discuss difficult social issues, question their integrity and motives. Above all, question the veracity, It may seem clever, but the persistent use of satire is the product of a weak mind and is almost always factually inaccurate. But we as a culture place more importance on other’s ability to deliver insults than intellectual debate…a clever insult and a cartoon image is more effective and easier for most than formulating an opinion based on fact. It is just a sad trend in American social/civil evolution.

Certainly, the Tea Party is not for everyone and not perfect, but it gives everyone 50% more political options for a candidate. The Tea Party is concerned with the laws and principles of the Constitution, small government and fiscal responsibility. Those 3 tenets are the heart of the Tea Party philosophy, and presently Tea Party candidates don’t stray too far from this base. As Mr. Brat said of our current system, “We live in an era of intergenerational theft, we are racking up bills only to hand them off to our children.”

Democrats will try to demonize Tea Party candidates like they do to everyone else. They will place labels on the Tea Party and call them zealots and extremists and crazies. Republicans will position themselves as embracing Tea Party ideals, but in a more moderate version. But make no mistake, the Tea Party is a strong and powerful medicine for the scourge of the abuses of the two-party system. I would invite anyone to look at the credentials of Dr. Dave Brat. He is living proof that an honest man can be elected to political office.

The US congress began this year with a 13% approval rating, the lowest in recorded history. The next time you see someone post something on Facebook that seems ridiculous or blindly protects the old, corrupt political system without justification, ask them to prove it! Politics is not an emotion…it is our life and our children’s future. I do not recognize what the Democratic and Republican parties stand for any longer. They have so distorted their agenda in clever sound bytes and truth-bending that they have become grotesque caricatures, like a dense flock of birds they ebb and flow randomly in a plasma-like mass chasing polling results.

The Tea Party is quickly making believers out of opponents and devouring ignorance. It may be replacing ignorance with a limited set of issues.  However, it is a step in the right direction after a decades-long slide into self-imposed ignorance by the American electorate. Political parties that set their agenda on mudslinging mode may just find themselves face-down in their own mud-bucket with a Tea Party candidate’s hand on the back of their heads.

Timothy Kelly
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Timothy Kelly

Tim Kelly is the Founder of ForexTV. Since its inception in 2003, ForexTV has been a global leader in forex news and has expanded its news coverage to multiple industries. ForexTV is now one of the most recognized brands in global financial news. Mr. Kelly currently serves as Managing Editor for 401kTV.

Mr. Kelly is an expert in online marketing, search engine optimization, content development and content distribution. He has consulted some of the top brokerages, media companies and financial exchanges on online marketing and content management including: The New York Board of Trade, Chicago Board Options Exchange, International Business Times, Briefing.com, Bloomberg and Bridge Information Systems and 401kTV.

He continues to be a regular market analyst and writer for ForexTV.com. He holds a Series 3 and Series 34 CFTC registration and formerly was a Commodities Trading Advisor (CTA). Tim is also an expert and specialist in Ichimoku technical analysis. He was also a licensed Property & Casualty; Life, Accident & Health Insurance Producer in New York State.

In addition to writing about the financial markets, Mr. Kelly writes extensively about online marketing and content marketing.

Mr. Kelly attended Boston College where he studied English Literature and Economics, and also attended the University of Siena, Italy where he studied studio art.

Mr. Kelly has been a decades-long community volunteer in his hometown of Long Island where he established the community assistance foundation, Kelly's Heroes. He has also been a coach of Youth Lacrosse for over 10 years. Prior to volunteering in youth sports, Mr. Kelly was involved in the Inner City Scholarship program administered by the Archdiocese of New York.

Before creating ForexTV, Mr, Kelly was Sr. VP Global Marketing for Bridge Information Systems, the world’s second largest financial market data vendor. Prior to Bridge, Mr. Kelly was a team leader of Media at Bloomberg Financial Markets, where he created Bloomberg Personal Magazine with an initial circulation of over 7 million copies monthly.
Timothy Kelly
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  • Rob S

    Intelligence? Did they permanently banish Sarah Palin? Because the Tea Party’s poster-girl is about as far from intelligent as a person can get. This article attempts to portray the Tea Party as something other than the Koch Brothers funded far right, if not extreme, machine, while calling everyone else liars. There’s no doubt the system is broken, but a party funded by the Koch Brothers that just so happens to espouse every issue in ways that would tremendously benefit these billionaires while continuing to weaken middle class voters, is clearly not the answer.