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baltimoresun.com

Tea party has been true to its agenda: protecting the rich

12:30 PM EDT, August 7, 2011

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I couldn't agree more with Ron Smith's assessment that the tea party people have been true to their agenda as it related to the debt ceiling negotiations ("Surprise: politicians keeping their promises," Aug. 5), but we part company as to what those goals really are.

I believe it is misleading to characterize the new tea party crop in D.C. as an organic grassroots uprising of citizens whose primary concern is to reduce spending. To the contrary, they are a well funded arm of the uber-right backed by folks like the Koch brothers, and to that end, they must push the agenda of the people that got them elected.

How else can you explain that there is no genuine effort from these junior Congress members to discontinue the shameful tax breaks to the wealthiest citizens in this country? How else would you explain that there is no urgency on their part to stop our costly wars? How can you have a discussion about shared responsibility in fiscal matters without a sincere effort to tackle the two areas causing the bulk of misery for struggling Americans?

Let me be clear, like Mr. Smith, I am no fan of President Obama, but wasting ink talking about his failed promises on Guantanamo and such merely diverts our eyes from the salient problems facing us. I wish we could stop focusing on trying to support one party or the other when deep down and inside I believe the largest percentage of citizens in our country do not believe either party is representing them.

Most economists, analysts and pundits agree our primary concern needs to be the creation of new jobs, and though there is plenty of debate how to accomplish this, for my two cents, I am tired of waiting for those jobs to trickle down on me. To be perfectly blunt, where is the incentive for millionaires and billionaires that already have everything they will ever need to start a new company? Furthermore, after many years of these tax breaks for people that least need it, where is this wealth of good jobs? It doesn't exist. If this strategy was working, our economy would be booming by now.

Winning and losing in Washington has become the dominant paradigm, and the results of that gamesmanship between two out of touch parties bickering like school children on the playground has only created a slew of meaningless sound bites for television and radio while citizens continue to lose their homes.

Steve Weaver, Baltimore