Has anyone noticed that the recent election shows democracy in action? Voters are disgruntled with Washington's spending spree, new laws and fiscal irresponsibility. Now the voters are speaking and taking it out on the incumbents - most notable in the Republican primaries. Senator Bennett of Utah and Murkowski have lost. Charlie Crist once the odds on favorite for the Republican nomination to the Senate from Florida left the party to run as an independent due to Marco Rubio. In the Florida governor's race Rick Scott upset establishment's Bill McCollum. Even Arlen Spector who left the Republican party because he would have lost to Pat Toomey still lost as a democrat to Joe Sestak. Tea Party favorites beat establishment candidates in Kentucky (Rand Paul), Nevada (Sharon Angle), New Hampshsire (Kelly Ayotte) and stunningly in Delaware (Christine O'Donnell beat Mike Castle) and New York (Carl Paladino beat Rick Lazio).There are also at least 15 Tea Party endoreses who won House primaries. Many have pointed to the endorsements of Sarah Palin and Jim DeMint in all of this. But mere endorsements do not get people out to vote. Rather it is a general anger in the performance of establishment politicians and the appeal of electing citizens to replace the professional politicians who have done little in their lives except running for political office. The establishment has wrung its hands saying that these novices cannot win. The mainstream media has been running articles on many of the candidates on seemingly odd social statements or past happenings. However, not a word on what truly matters to voters: taxes, growth in federal spending, new legislation on health care, card check, cap and trade, national defense. Conveniently forgotten is the media's relative silence on past digressions by its elected favorites. However, keep in mind that calls to eliminate the departments of education and energy are no longer kooky in the eyes of the public. Ideas to freeze federal spending and roll it back to 2008 levels, to take a hard look at entitlements, to enact a flat tax now look reasonable. I can't hardly wait until November 3 to see if this ripple of a revolution becomes a tidal wave.
Harold A. Black is professor emeritus in the Department of Finance, University of Tennessee, Knoxville having retired after 24 years of service. He has served on the faculties of American University, Howard University, the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill and the University of Florida. His government service includes the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and as a Board Member of the National Credit Union Administration. He also has served on the boards of directors Home Savings of America and its parent company, H. F. Ahmanson & Co., Irwindale, California prior to its merger with Washington Mutual Savings Bank, on the board of New Century Financial Corporation, Irvine, California, then the nation’s largest real estate investment trust and as director and later chairman of the Nashville Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. He writes an occasional article for the Knoxville News-Sentinel at http://www.knoxnews.com/staff/dr-harold-black/. His web page is haroldablackphd.com