The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Senator Robert Bennett has been denied renomination for his senatorial seat from Utah. The culprits in this theft seem to be members of the Tea Party: Some may see this as the purging of the impure, much like the Democrats did to Joe Liebermann. But I think that those who argue this are missing the real truth of the matter.
The Tea Partiers are not solely Republican. But what they are could be fairly considered as small government activists. While Liebermann was chased out of the Democrat Party for consorting with Republicans, it was done by the followers of Markos Moulitas, a committed and fervent "progressive." Members of the Tea Party are just as likely to be Independents as Republicans, and there are even some thinking former Democrats thrown in. This difference is the reason why the Tea Party will have a much longer lasting impact on politics then the "Friends of Ned."
Senator Bennett may feel that he has been treated unfairly, just because he voted for TARP and other expansion of the state without the ability to pay for it. But he is just the first, and if the Republican Party is smart (not a given in any event) they will recognize that this group will have more influence than the usual get out the vote of the base in coming elections. In fact, it is probably worse for the Republicans, because their base is more likely to sympathize with the goals of the Tea Party.
But the secret power of the Tea Party is that we are broke. Not just overspent, but flat busted, make Greece look like Scrooge McDuck broke. Some may cavil that the Tea Party never complained when Bush was spending, but they are absolutely wrong. In fact, it was the general disgust with his overspending that led to the Democrats gaining control in 2006, and increasing their margin in 2008, as they cited their "fiscal responsibility bona fides. Unfortunately, it was all just a lie.
The country is at a crossroads. On the one path, we increase taxes in order to maintain what is now considered to be the minimal level of government. This path will lead to higher unemployment, stagnating wages, and zero growth or innovation. People will recognize that it is in their interests to not produce, but to relax and enjoy the results of those who do produce. A sort of reverse Marxism, where the productive have their wealth stolen, only not by the capitalists, but by the non-productive.
The other path is no more comfortable either. It will demand a complete reodering of what we are to expect from the government: National Defense, secure borders and a court system. Everything else is going to be off the table until we get our debt under control.
But if we do get our debt under control, we have the potential to unleash human productivity like the workd has never seen before.