Alan Keyes has an excellent explanation of what's been going on for a long time in America now, and one that helps explain the rise of the Tea Party, I'd say.
The elite manipulators of the party system select (or co-opt) leaders for these groups, then play them off against one another. Much like the owners of a rigged casino, they allow each group to see itself as the victor just often enough to sustain the false hope that keeps them on the premises. But they never allow any group or combination of groups to score wins that give them sufficient chips to challenge or interfere with the elite's exclusive control of the house.Do read it all, of course.
This may very well sound familiar to Canadians. ;)
Feet to the fire... feet to the fire.
Go over the Elites' heads straight to the parties. Scare the parties harder, with the prospect of losing power, than the Elites do with their own scare and carrot/stick tactics.
TEA Party forever!