Tony Blankley

The establishment explains -- rather condescendingly -- to the "unsophisticated" tea party and similar people that political change under our constitutional system is incremental. Take what you can get and come back for a little more next season. That is an argument about American political history that has usually been right, but not always.

When the insistent demands of the near future require more than incremental change, the American political process can become quite radical. For example, the demands of the common man against the aristocratic federalist policies from the 1790s to the early 1800s forced radical change, ending federalists and bringing in first Jeffersonianism (in the revolution of 1800) and Jacksonianism in the 1830s. The old order was overthrown by democratic radicalism. Most conspicuously, the urgent demands of abolition and secession brought on the shocking radical solution of the Civil War in 1861.

The vast immigration to post-Civil War America brought on radical progressivism, which caused the suppression of some of the democratic power of the new immigrants and closed the immigration door to non-Northern Europeans almost entirely in 1924. Obviously, the shock of the Great Depression brought on radical statism in Washington -- again overthrowing many status quo interests.

So, who's the fool: The Tea party people, who say we must do much more now to avert the coming debt and statism disaster, or the status quo establishment who say don't rock the fiscal, debt-ceiling boat -- we'll get to fixing the future in...the future?

I've been a Reagan conservative incrementalist all my political life. But the near and ominous debt and statism future is radicalizing me quickly. We must do much more, much faster than this deal offers if we are to save our future. The establishment needs to start emotionally de-investing in a fast dying status quo and prepare to embrace real change.

America will lose its triple-A Treasury rating not because a rating agency says so (and despite a debt deal) but because the anticipated federal debt to gross domestic product ratio -- and the $60 trillion of unfunded entitlements that is driving that ratio-- can be seen by every bond buyer on the planet.


Tony Blankley

Tony Blankley, a conservative author and commentator who served as press secretary to Newt Gingrich during the 1990s, when Republicans took control of Congress, died Sunday January 8, 2012. He was 63.

Blankley, who had been suffering from stomach cancer, died Saturday night at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, his wife, Lynda Davis, said Sunday.

In his long career as a political operative and pundit, his most visible role was as a spokesman for and adviser to Gingrich from 1990 to 1997. Gingrich became House Speaker when Republicans took control of the U.S. House of Representatives following the 1994 midterm elections.

©Creators Syndicate