Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Tea Party Enemy

In today's Washington Post, Richard Cohen analyzed the ephemeral nature of the Tea Party.  He correctly points that this leaderless movement is a major threat to Obama, but he stops just short of making the necessary conclusion.  With parallels being made to Afghanistan, Cohen writes, "Obama is stuck in the classic dilemma of asymmetrical warfare: Who and where is the enemy?"

Cohen leaves this question hanging, going on to discuss the desire for change and raw emotion that are prevalent in the movement, concluding that, as ANR has argued before, there is much room and need to channel this into productive forums.  However, the answer to this question - and what lies at the root of Obama's problems - is that this "enemy" is America.  Whether individuals are members of the Tea Party or avoid it (possibly due to its heightened emotion) there is large agreement, across America, that the administration is out of touch with the needs of the country.  Charlie Cook, cited in another Washington Post editorial, sums it up nicely. "[Some leaders] are told all their lives that they are the most brilliant people on the planet. They don't get less bright, but hubris kicks in. [Obama] just assumed that he was going to be a success, as he had always been in life."  Maybe Obama should stop fighting this specter of an enemy and listen to the desires of America.

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