When Rick Santelli called for a new TEA party from the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange in February 2009 TEA party groups around the nation began to spring up. Mostly made up of people tired of the big government bailouts and those calling for fiscal restraint, the TEA party became home to many fiscal conservatives.
Over time (as I have said many times on this blog) the Ron Paul movement began to infiltrate the organizations and take over the TEA party. Not all original members stayed. Some who were looking for a vehicle by which to let Washington hear from angry taxpayers soon saw an effort to convert the TEA party into a libertarian organization. And of course to many conservatives, libertarians were really just "liberals-light".
Over time the TEA party concept morphed into a Ron Paul support organization.
But this was not the intention of many of the founding members. Now, with Ron Paul no longer suited up for the political battlefield, the TEA party has devolved into a support group for Ron Paul acolytes.
A number of articles and books give credit to Ron Paul for being the father of the TEA party. But how many people who joined TEA party groups which proudly announced that they had no central leader and followed no central doctrine, thought they were signing up for the Ron Paul movement when they became involved?
And if there really was supposed to be no central leader and no central doctrine which defined the TEA party movement, then if Ron Paul really planned this all along, were people being tricked?
You might note from some of my postings that I was in favor of the TEA party early on. But I saw what was happening and soured on it pretty quickly.
Don't forget that Ross Perot's hatred of George W. Bush had a lot to do with giving us Bill Clinton. Perot, like Paul, is a Texan and if you study their personality traits they have much in common.
And one thing that the Ron Paul movement shares with the Ross Perot bunch is that they like being the fly in the GOP ointment. Ron Paul is on record making it very clear that he wants to fundamentally transform the republican party. And why, you might ask?
Why not just form a third party of your own? The answer is simple really. The republican party is already in existence, it has structure, membership and money. If Ron Paul took over the republican party a large percentage of the membership would remain members, some not even fully aware of the sea change which took place. His movement would have effectively conquered the party and he would have the legitimacy of it's name and place in history for himself as the spoils of that battle.
And that is what has happened with the TEA party. His movement seized upon the organization, the exuberance and the name of a group getting tons of media attention. And now they seem to control it.
No longer is the TEA party a loosely organized group of concerned citizens, it is the adopted child of Ron Paul who proudly proclaims to be its father.
Did YOU know that this was what you were joining when you became a TEA party member? Look around, some did.