Search This Blog

Monday, August 1, 2011

Wisdom about the Tea Party

There has been a good deal of hyperbole about the tea party movement, both pro and con. Back in 1984, there was similar commentary about Newt Gingrich and his followers in the House, who were confronting the House Democratic leadership. Barber Conable, a moderate Republican from upstate New York, was retiring that year, and wrote a column reflecting on life in the House. Instead of looking at the upstarts with horror, he instead saw something very natural:
Old as I am, I recall being a "young turk" at one point and participating noisily in a successful effort to change House rules which the then Establishment found adequate. I learned a lot about the institution from the effort, vented my frustrations, and gradually became part of the Establishment myself. Youth presses age, provides a good deal of the dynamic and the dialogue, and eventually ages. Partisans may not like the tranquility of my view of these recent histrionics, but I find reassurance in the cycle of renewal.