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Republicans, especially Tea Partiers, like to claim that they represent the vision of the people who founded the US.  And we on the left let them get away with it way too often.

I've long noticed that, while lots of folks like to talk about the Constitution and Declaration of Independence, frightfully few people bother to read them.

As it turns out, both documents have something to say about the current manufactured crisis.  And it's not what the Tea Party would like them to say.

The Declaration of Independence has twenty-seven paragraphs that list grievances against the King of England to justify independence.  Taxation is mentioned once, in the seventeenth of the twenty-seven paragraphs.  And the complaint isn't the amount of taxation, but that the taxation is without the consent of the people.

The first two complaints against the King?

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

The people who founded the US didn't want a do-nothing government.  They wanted government that worked.  They rejected a government that failed to make laws and prevented them from going into effect.

The Tea Party also claims to be the Party of the Constitution.  Article I, section 8 lists the powers of Congress.  And the first two clauses of section 8?

To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

To borrow Money on the credit of the United States;

Collect money, spend money, borrow money, pay the bills. That's what governments do.  That's what the founders wanted our government to do.

The Tea Party isn't just obstructing a particular law or President.  They're obstructing the intention of the Founders they claim to revere.

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