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the Executive Director and Director of Terrorism Research for
a non-profit, non-partisan, 501(c)(3) research and education
initiative. His writing has been recognized by the US House
International Relations Committee and the Japan Center for
Conflict Prevention. His organization, BasicsProject.org,
partnered in producing the original national symposium series
addressing the root causes of radical Islamist terrorism. He is
a member of the
International Analyst Network.
He also serves as the managing editor for The New Media Journal.
Mr. Salvato has appeared on The O'Reilly Factor on FOX News
Channel, and is a regular guest on talk radio including on The
Captain's America Radio Show airing on AM1220 WSRQ and on the
Internet catering to the US Armed Forces around the world and on
The Roth Show with Dr. Laurie Roth syndicated nationally on the
USA Radio Network. His
opinion-editorials have been published by The American
Enterprise Institute, The Washington Times & Human Events and
are syndicated nationally. He is occasionally quoted in The
Federalist. Mr. Salvato is available for public speaking
Party Movement, The GOP & Making It Work
Time Is Ripe for Divide & Conquer
Janus Face of the Progressive Democrats
At This Point It’s About Defining the
Liberty v. Obama’s Social Engineering
Constitution Just a Grand Suggestion?
Dems Been Marginalized within Their Own Party
the Spin on the Fort Hood Massacre
to Speak for an Entire Culture
Ideology Masks Ignorance
to Pay Close Attention to the Politicians
Real Strategy for Afghanistan
Will Throw ACORN Under the Bus
God, No...It's So Hot, I'm Burning Up"
Larger Point on the Public Option
the Status Quo
You Say You
Want a Real Solution
Awakened the Sleeping Giant'
Label Overshadows a Real Issue
Legislation...It’s Your Job!
Government Run by Mrs. Kravitz
a Safeguard Against Political &...Tyranny
the Celebrity Deaths, A Reality Check
When In The
Course of Human Events...
Massacre, US Repeating Mistakes...
The Path to
the Future Requires a Return to the Roots
Things, Facts & Truth Matter
Liberals, Politics & Deceit
Obama, Cheney & The Bright Shiny Thing
Nancy Pelosi: Damaged Beyond Repair
Radical Islam By Any Other Name...
Celebrating the Exit of a RINO, Cheering as Rome...
Specter: An Opportunist Guilty of Political Treason
A Week for the Earth; A Day for the Constitution
Left Is Making a Mistake in Ridiculing the Tea Parties
Obama’s European Tour: Arrogance, Ineptness &...
The Two-Faced Brutality of Hope & Change
The United States of America Is Not a Democracy
The ‘Give Obama a Chance’ Trial Period is Over
Recognizing the Reality of Radical Islam
‘Oh, God!’ It’s Bobby Jindal!
Determining the Intent of the Pres. Determination
It’s Not Obama’s "Stimulus” Bill
Time to Admit the Realities of Pakistan
Gaza & The One-World Media’s Propaganda
Politics, Chicago Corruption...I Told You So
Obama: Neither Oblivious Nor Deceptive
POTUS Needs to Be a Natural-Born Citizen
Cornucopia of Gratitude
Marriage Back to the Church
The Tea Party Movement, The GOP & Making It Work
January 29, 2010
Only the most partisan and/or
politically ignorant among us would fail to recognize the magnitude, importance
and the consequences of the Tea Party Movement. To be certain, it is a force to
be reckoned with. But, as with the science of storms, there is a danger when two
forces compete to occupy the same space. We of the Right side of the aisle must
recognize this danger and insist that actions are taken, definitions are
designated and roles are recognized, lest we turn an important moment in time
into catastrophic history.
The Tea Party Movement
The first thing we have to do is to recognize and understand exactly what
the Tea Party Movement is, where it came from and why.
Many in the political world have erroneously identified the Tea Party Movement
as a political group not unlike the Democrats, Libertarians or Republicans. In
fact, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Proof to this reality is in the
fact that people who have embraced the Tea Party Movement come from every flavor
of politics. When over a million people
descended on Washington in the name of the Tea Party Movement last Fall, the
crowd was comprised of people from every political party – sans the
Progressives, every social background, every religion and every race. To say
that it is dominated by any one political party is to make a huge
The Tea Party Movement – and the name itself is symbolic rather than
manufactured – is, in reality, the re-awakening of the American people to their
obligation to civic responsibility; to governmental oversight. This is nothing
new or revolutionary, as was the original
Boston Tea Party of 1773.
This re-awakening is actually a return to the obligation of citizenry as
envisioned by the Founders and Framers. People like Jefferson, Adams,
Washington, Franklin and Madison took for granted that the citizenry would
understand their role in government: that of the overseer. The Founders and
Framers believed that we would be vigilant in providing governmental oversight,
in understanding just who we were electing to office and in holding them
accountable for their actions. In short, they believed we, as citizens, would do
our part by paying attention to government.
The truth is We the People began to abdicate this solemn responsibility
with the advent of government entitlement and as apathy increased, political
opportunists, ideologues and nefarious elements – such as the Progressive
Movement, the globalists and their proxies – took hold in government. As we slid
ever deeper into the abyss of political apathy we lost out government to special
interest groups and those who would want to "fundamentally
transform” our country from a Constitutional Republic to a cog in a new
The Tea Party Movement is – for all practical purposes – We the People
re-establishing our rightful place at the top of the governmental food chain,
from whence all the power of government is derived. It is not a political party.
It is the American people re-establishing their constitutional right of
governmental oversight and redress of government.
Re-Establishing the GOP Brand
Understanding that the Republican Party can never "own” the Tea Party
Movement – essentially because the Tea Party Movement is a mindset and not an
entity – there remains the issue of re-establishing the Republican brand.
The fact that the Republican brand is in trouble – and has been since at least
2006 – is attributable not only to the lack of governmental oversight by We
the People, but by the lack of oversight targeting the political party
hierarchy by rank-and-file Republicans. The GOP allowed itself to be co-opted –
to a great extent – by inside-the-beltway political operatives that cared more
about winning elections than advancing Republican principles.
To recap, aside for its staunch stance against slavery and its support of the
Missouri Compromise, the
original platform of the Republican Party circa 1856 establishes that the
Republican Party stood for:
▪ A rededication of government to constitutional principles, philosophies and
▪ A strong, prudent and principled national security
▪ A well-maintained infrastructure
And perhaps the most important and defining provision,
"RESOLVED, That we invite the affiliation and cooperation of the men of all
parties, however differing from us in other respects, in support of the
principles herein declared; and believing that the spirit of our institutions as
well as the Constitution of our country, guarantees liberty of conscience and
equality of rights among citizens, we oppose all legislation impairing their
Simply stated, the platform of 1856 created the "big tent” party that
Republican National Committee members say they quest for today by limiting the
planks in the platform and by employing the understanding that it is more
important to safeguard an individual’s right to advance their own "special
interest” agenda (please understand that the term "special interest” doesn’t
necessarily mean something unsavory) than it is to champion that special
interest as a part of the party’s platform.
This concept is brilliance in practice.
The Republicans who crafted the original platform understood that legislating
the micromanagement of specific societal mores was a no-win proposition. If one
administration choose to advance legislation – or even the establishment of a
constitutional amendment – to champion a specific special interest issue, it was
understood that all that would be necessary to render that legislation moot
would be for a future administration, in possession of an opposing view on the
issue, to simply overturn or craft legislation nullifying the prior legislation.
They recognized that legislated solutions to societal and/or cultural ills would
never – and could never – render the issue resolved. A perfect example of this
comes in the issue of prohibition.
Instead, the Republicans who established the original party platform understood
that protecting the right of the individual – the right of the individual
– to affect societal change and establish cultural mores outside the confines of
government was the singular effective political component in resolving societal
differences. The Republican Party of 1856 stood for defending the individual’s
right to affect society and the societal norms, and they expected that the
citizenry would be self-motivated and self-sufficient enough to embrace that
freedom and the self-ordained civic responsibility to engage on behalf of their
Today, aside from recovering from the moniker of spendthrift, the Republican
Party has morphed into a mirror image of the Progressive-held Democrat Party.
They say "black” and the GOP says "white.” They have planks in their platform
about separation of church and state, abortion, gay rights, etc. and the GOP
simply takes the opposite viewpoint. This tactic does not create a choice, it
creates division. It does not advance the principles and philosophy of
Americanism, it advances factionalism with the body politic, something
James Madison and George Washington identified as a direct threat to the
In re-branding the Republican Party, the leadership would serve its members –
and the country – best by refusing to expand the platform to include special
interest planks and, instead, returning to the limited plank platform of its
roots, where the party championed individual freedom and individual
responsibility and engagement where issues of societal mores were concerned, not
the legislation of ideological solutions or social engineering. The GOP must
resign itself to defending an individual’s right to affect change, not to being
the vehicle for that change.
The Role of Today’s GOP & The Tea Party Movement
As I stated in the beginning, in the science of storms, there is a danger
when two forces compete to occupy the same space. This is exquisitely
illustrated in the dichotomy of power now playing out between the Tea Party
Movement and the Republican Party, most significantly where candidates for
office are concerned.
I was heartened to hear that Republican National Committee Political Director
Gentry Collins stated the RNC would exercise a "light touch” in the 2010
midterm elections. This approach promises to diminish what could have been a
disastrous confrontation between candidates championed by the Tea Party Movement
and candidates "mandated” by the RNC. But this is simply a commutation of the
inevitable unless a reformation is undertaken by the RNC hierarchy.
In re-branding itself, it would wise for the GOP to take the opportunity
afforded by this unique moment in American history to re-invent itself. The
Republican National Committee – along with Republican organizations at every
level – must re-structure itself to be less the inside-the-beltway command and
control entity (an entity that mandates candidates and strong-arms platforms and
agendas, which it has most certainly evolved into) and re-dedicate itself to
becoming more of a mammoth and viciously efficient support and organizational
tool that embraces candidates sent up from the grassroots; Conservatives
re-awakened to their constitutionally mandated civic responsibility who have
taken it upon themselves to run for office in 2010, 2012 and through the future.
If the Republican Party can wrap its brain around the strategic brilliance of
this re-invention, it will position itself to be the preferred political party
of those in the Tea Party Movement; it will be the avenue and political
structure through which the Tea Party Movement advances their preferred
If the Republican Party refuses to understand the dramatically changed political
landscape of the country, if they refuse to evolve from the inside-the-beltway
mentality that allows for the existence of egotistical power-players no
different from the elitists now in control of Congress, should the GOP insist on
maintaining the status quo, they will be compromised, marginalized and, perhaps,
even destroyed by the re-awakening of the American people to their
constitutionally mandated obligation to governmental engagement and oversight.
Simply put, the GOP can either adapt and enjoy a promising future or become