Thanks rehoot for that account of your response.
I think it interesting to note as Arepo does the contradiction between deontology and political activism. Deontology tells me "do this" or "don't do that". For instance, it says "don't tell lies". That is not at all the same as "minimise the number of lies told in the world". That would be consequentialism.
People tend to start out with high-sounding deontological "principles", such as "respect individual liberty", and transmute these principles into values, and then into a duty to promote and defend those values in society at large. But promoting values is consequentialist. Actually, I don't see how deontological ethics can found any political activism at all. Political activism necessarily means fighting for a third party (the government) to do this and that. But that means fighting for a certain state of the world, that is for a consequence; deontology just says what to do, regardless of consequences.
If the Tea Party were to adhere to a respect of individual liberty as a deontological imperative, it could only say: Our members, as individuals, recognize a personal obligation to respect the individual liberty of others. It might also add: Everyone, including the members of the government, should do the same. But that would be an issue between those members of government and their own sense of duty. It would not be a reason to demand their demise, to demand a change in the laws and so on.
If instead individual liberty is viewed as a value, then it can be something to maximize, even if that means violating the individual liberty of some (taking money from the rich, for instance, to give it to the poor). I don't think that is what the Tea Party stands for.
Well, I think I've said nothing new here, just elaborated on what you two said...