Democratic economist Robert Reich has written a stormbringer of an op-ed accusing the Tea Party of "treason." That's his word for the Party's stated aim of "drowning [government] in the bathtub," as Tea Party icon Grover Norquist puts it.
"Imagine a plot to undermine the government of the United States, to destroy much of its capacity to do the public's business, and to sow distrust among the population," Reich writes.
Imagine further that the plotters infiltrate Congress and state governments, reshape their districts to give them disproportionate influence in Washington, and use the media to spread big lies about the government. Finally, imagine they not only paralyze the government but are on the verge of dismantling pieces of it.
He says this scenario might sound far-fetched, but it's close to the Tea Party's aims and achievements. They've set out not only to change government, but to "eviscerate" it.
Sequestration is the first major milestone of this mission - "the first significant tea party victory," according to Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-KS). It will bring higher unemployment, for which Americans will blame the government, Reich writes. And the upshot is that more Americans will believe that government is inherently bad.