Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Register-Bee Demolishes Danville Tea Party

The Danville Register & Bee had some pretty harsh words for Danville Tea Party leader Nigel Coleman. Apparently for all his group's pronouncements against taxes and government spending, one of Mr. Coleman's projects is receiving hefty taxpayer support--without a City Council vote.

For some context, the Danville Tea Party apparently paid for a plane to fly over rush-hour traffic last week with a banner reading "OBAMA STOP DESTROYING OUR COUNTRY" in tow. Quoth the Bee:

Perhaps the Danville Tea Party’s next meeting should be buzzed by an airplane towing a banner that reads — in five-foot-tall letters, of course — “FISCAL CONSERVATIVISM BEGINS AT HOME!”

In case members of the Danville Tea Party missed it, retired City Manager Jerry Gwaltney gave the Coleman MarketPlace project an extra $465,000 without Danville City Council voting on it. They should know about that, because two members of City Council — Wayne Oakes and Fred Shanks — have been spotted at local Tea Party events.

But for now, the only member of Danville City Council who seems willing to raise a stink about it is Adam Tomer, a Democrat.

So, the question we have to ask the high-flying members of the Danville Tea Party is why a Democrat is leading the charge for fiscal accountability on Danville City Council — and whether their group is even concerned with how taxpayer money is spent outside the Beltway.

Based on their latest stunt — and the group’s silence on the Coleman MarketPlace appropriation — it appears they have no interest in an issue so close to home. That’s too bad, because it’s all taxpayer money. (Bolding added by me for emphasis)

Yowzers, that's harsh! There seems to be a lot of this going around in the Tea Party movement--how many "Keep The Government Out of Medicare" signs did you see at town halls last summer? And let's not forget Rep. Kevin Brady's angry letter complaining that the DC Metro didn't adequately prepare for the Tea Party's anti-government protests back in September.

This is why "lower spending" and "small government" are brilliant as campaign slogans, but useless as policy. They're utterly meaningless and universally meaningful at the same time--everyone wants to cut everything except the program that benefits them, and it looks like the Tea Party is no exception. I guess it's true what they say: Where you stand depends on where you sit.

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