Huckabee: Bring Back Tarring and Feathering

I realize that Mike Huckabee fancies himself a real man-of-the-people, but I never expected his right-wing populism would take the form of calling for citizens to start tarring and feathering members of Congress … but that’s exactly what he did in this commentary on Fox show this weekend:

Scott Brown’s defeat of Martha Coakley in the Massachusetts Senate campaign on Tuesday was a second Boston Tea Party as tons of Democrat hubris, elitism, and paternalism were dumped into Boston Harbor.

Our colonial ancestors tossed that tea overboard to protest “taxation without representation” because they couldn’t elect a member to the British parliament. We’ve gone far beyond taxation with representation — we’ve got bailouts without representation, boondoggle stimulus spending without representation, unconstitutional health care mandates without representation.

Critics of today’s growing tea party movement argue that Americans have their two senators and congressperson. But that’s not how our system looks to the tea partiers. They believe that the lobbyists on K Street have 100 senators and 435 representatives, and they don’t have any.

The lobbyists support both parties. They know that the sausage Congress makes has different seasonings depending on whether the Democrats or Republicans are in power. It may offer the flavor of heavier or lighter federal control, but the ingredients are the same. It’s still made from pure pork and we feed the pig.

President Obama’s promise that health care negotiations would be broadcast on C-Span helps explain why the country elected him — he spoke to our hunger for fixing the system. Watch the YouTubes of him making that promise and look at the audience members, at how their faces light up. President Obama’s failure to keep his promise helps explain why a center-left state like Massachusetts elected Scott Brown.

The way health care was negotiated, the special interests had all the seats at the table behind the locked door in the secret room, and we the people, we the patients, didn’t have any. It’s as if we all played a game of musical chairs, and the American people were left standing when the music stopped.

On December 16, 1773, the morning of the Boston Tea party, 5,000 patriots gathered at the Old South Meeting House, a site used for both worship and politics. It was God’s House and the People’s House. The colonial leaders had no embarrassing back-room deals to hide either from God or their followers. Today our leaders are too ashamed to conduct their business in front of the people, let alone God.

Every member of Congress knows in his gut what’s in the people’s interest and what’s in K Street’s interest. If you think your real boss is some smug guy in a corner office with his Gucci loafers up on a mahogany deck and not the folks back home, those folks who voted for you, who gave you 25 or 50 hard-earned bucks, who put up yard signs and made calls for you, you deserve to lose. Shame on you, you shouldn’t just be fired, you should be tarred and feathered as the original tea partiers would have done. That’s my view and I welcome yours.