November 2011

Pendulum Politics And The Storm Before The Calm

The best place to understand the pendulum's swing is from above it.

The Freshmen congresspeople of the 2010 mid-term elections trooped up to Capitol Hill waving the flag of the "people's mandate". They felt, elected as they were by the popular movement of the Tea Party, that they had the authority of the American people to enact a political ideology. The people had seen the Democratic pretender for what he was, and they wanted a new brand of politician to sweep out the establishment, and create a newer, smaller government. Fast forward to today, and those Tea Party activists are threatening to throw their own people out of office, and the Republican establishment is slowly attempting to divorce itself from the right-wing upstart movement. 2006 saw a Democratic sweep of the House, a referendum, they said, on Bush's failed policies. 2008 saw a massive movement of people looking for an end to the war. 2010 saw a smaller but no less-vocal movement looking for less spending and less government, and now, heading into the 2012 election cycle, we have record low congressional approval and a new populist movement crying for the blood of big business. What is going on that Americans swing so wildly in their public sentiment?