Jonathan H. Kupitsky attended the tea party convention:
I think the one thing that really did surprise me was the high level of explicitly Christian social conservatism on display here. One of the “breakout sessions” featured a speech from Pastor Rick Scarborough who is most famous for trying to get America’s preachers more politicized. (“I’m not a Republican. I’m not a Democrat. I’m a Christocrat.”)
After his speech, a middle-aged female delegate with a twang stood up and said, during the Q&A, “All the media types are asking us why we’re here. Here’s what I say. We’re all here for a little R&R revival and revolt. If you’re not a Christian, and a person of faith, you just can’t understand what we’re doing!!” She got a standing ovation.
I think the MSM is missing the real focus of this movement. We keep describing the tea-partiers as fiscal conservatives. But this is patently untrue on its face.
They have no plans to cut serious spending whatsoever. They love their Medicare, as they screamed at us last August. Do you remember them revolting against Bush's unfunded, Medicare prescription drug bill, the worst act of fiscal vandalism since the Iraq war? They want much more defense spending. And does anyone think they would ever touch social security? Tell me of one speech this weekend in which any serious spending cuts were actually proposed.
On healthcare costs, any attempt to restrain the massive fiscal burden of the care of people in their last days and hours of their lives - by entirely voluntary attempts to get them to prepare powers of attorney in advance - will be described as death-panels. This new form of Christianity - unlike the vast tradition stretching back to the Middle Ages - believes that even those in a vegetative state should be kept on feeding tubes for ever.
Everything they stand for is about more spending, not less. Remember that none of these people were up in arms when an evangelical president was adding trillions of debt, with not even a gesture at funding any of it. And they want to cut taxes as well.
So why are they really there?
They want their country back. That's what they tell us. I watched a CNN segment where one woman explicitly described Obama as Satan's agent. And the biggest applause of the Palin speech was her reference to children with special needs, her brilliant way of telling the base that she is a real pro-lifer and not a fake one. That's why she hauls little Trig everywhere she goes. He's a pro-life prop. A special needs child would be kept at home, cared for intently, and out of the limelight.
This is about Christianism, permanent war against Islam, rounding up illegals (did you hear Tancredo?) and a culture war against the cities and "unreal Americans". Unreal means not Christianist.