Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Law and Justice plans to host a Tea Party

Polish conservative crew Law and Justice (PiS) has long fashioned itself as Poland's answer to the US Republicans. Now PiS and the party's prickly frontman Jaroslaw Kaczynski want to take a page from the Republicans' book: they want to host their very own Partia Herbaciana, that is, Tea Party.

Kaczynski and gang will reportedly organise before end-March conferences entitled "How to correct the liberals' mistakes." Top Tea Partiers from the US will take centre-stage joined by purse-string tying colleagues from the UK Conservatives and others. Sounds like quite the fiscally conservative love-in, but can it work?

PiS is similar to the Republicans in that it is very socially conservative. Neither party would argue about banning abortion (PiS only grudgingly doesn't oppose abortions in the event a woman has been raped or her life is in danger) or forbidding homosexual unions. PiS doesn't like abortion or gays. If Poland had an immigration problem, PiS would surely be up in arms about the threat and would probably back building a wall. PiS likes walls and barriers. The Republicans' paranoid wing likewise has its mirror in PiS. Ask any PiS member who's to blame for problem a, b or c in Poland (or anywhere else for that matter) and the Russians or Germans are likely to place high on the list. Rich people and liberals come close behind. PiS likes conspiracies.

But if you turn to economics, PiS and Republicans, especially the Tea Party wing, are like chalk and cheese. Whereas the Tea Party wants to shrink government, PiS wants to expand it into this ever-present paternal guiding hand for the silly normal people who just don't understand what's right, moral or just. The Tea Party wants private businesses in the vanguard; PiS seemingly wants anyone who made too much behind bars, particularly if they are foreign.

In the end, we very much hope the Polish Tea Parties do happen. We are crossing our fingers and toes (and ask you to cross your fingers and toes) that Sarah Palin is invited and accepts. Seeing the Caribou Barbie meet the Duck in Chief Jaroslaw Kaczynski would be priceless.

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