The Occupy Wall Street movement has reminded me of two things: One, how much I hate partisanship, and, two, how silly liberalism really is. For all the Left’s talk about how Tea Partiers are racists, extremists, terrorists, and all the rest, liberals have either been giving a wink and a nod to the Occupy protesters or openly praising them.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said the protesters “had her heart,” telling ABC News, “I support the message to the establishment, whether it’s Wall Street or the political establishment and the rest, that change has to happen.”

A message to the establishment that change has to happen? What, exactly, does Ms. Pelosi think the Tea Party has been screaming about for two years?

My fellow conservatives have been having a field day portraying the Occupy protesters as a bunch of lawless, unkempt-hippie types, and in many cases, this description has been accurate. But sometimes so was the Left’s description of the Tea Partiers who were shouting at town halls, holding wacky signs, and exhibiting other generally crude behavior. Populist movements are often messy, and those in power will often use this messiness to discredit movements they don’t like. But is either the Tea Party or the Occupy movement ideologically valid? Does either movement have a message worth hearing? Do they have a point? To answer that, we must look at whether or not the two movements have espoused a coherent message.

The relatively simple idea of cutting government spending and reducing the debt was what created the Tea Party, and as long as that has remained the message, the movement has enjoyed widespread support. Some polls from a year ago showed a majority of Americans agreeing with the Tea Party and even relating to the movement more than either major party. No matter how much leaders like Pelosi and her liberal friends have tried to dismiss the Tea Party as a bunch of right-wingers lacking all sense and sanity, most Americans are concerned about a $15 trillion national debt and endless government spending. But later, when some in the Tea Party began to veer off into Birtherism, religiosity, paranoia about Sharia law, and other diversions, this is when the popular message of less government became obscured.

The Tea Party’s liberal enemies like to talk about these nasty aspects because they know it makes the movement look bad. And it does. If the Tea Party stays focused on the goal of limiting government, the movement can continue to change this country. If it veers off into other areas, mindless or not, it will simply become yet another ideological comfort zone for right-wingers that politicians are quick to abuse but little to use. To remain effective, the Tea Party cannot simply be the grassroots outpost for the same mindless partisanship that defines Washington, D.C. The earlier Tea Party was bipartisan in its scorn, and for the movement to remain dominant it must stick to its roots.

The Occupy movement, on the other hand, does not have a path to choose; it was incoherent from the start. They’re mad at Wall Street. So am I. That’s why I opposed the bank bailouts, which were nothing more than our federal government allowing corporations to privatize their profits but socialize their losses, which everyone from liberal Rep. Dennis Kucinich to conservative Sen. Jim DeMint pointed out. Americans from across the political spectrum agreed with the staggering immorality of the bank bailouts.

But what do the Occupy protesters suggest we do about such governmental thievery? They want even more government. Here are some of the demands given at the website Raise the minimum wage to $20; free college education; guaranteed living-wage income, regardless of employment; immediate across-the-board debt forgiveness for all; outlaw all credit-reporting agencies; and $1 trillion in infrastructure spending. Granted, one website does not necessarily speak for the entire Occupy movement. But this particular website is constantly cited because it is one of the only consistent messages one can find coming from this movement. And that message is socialism.

For all the commonalities some Occupy protesters might share with Tea Partiers — rejecting the bank bailouts or criticizing the Federal Reserve for instance — the movement’s only possible semblance of an actual point is that our current government isn’t socialist enough. Not only is this beyond absurd, but it’s antithetical to the current anti-government mood held by much of the public. Still, many of the Occupy protesters reject the idea that they’re socialists. What are they, then? We’re not sure. And neither are they.

Jack Hunter is the official campaign blogger for GOP presidential candidate Ron Paul, and he co-wrote Rand Paul’s The Tea Party Goes to Washington. You can hear Southern Avenger commentaries on The Morning Buzz with Richard Todd on 1250 WTMA.