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Apr-07-2010 12:41printcomments

Teabaggers, Go Figure

Some times this whole Tea Party thing makes me think about Germany between the First and Second World War.
The attitude is clear

(GOLD RIVER, B.C.) - I happen to read a lot. Partly because it comes with the territory when producing a newspaper. But, mostly because I like reading and have since elementary school, read a lot. Once it was only books and periodicals, but now with the Internet I have a major library right on my desk.

A considerable amount of the material that I read is politically and socially conservative, or at least whatpasses for conservative these days which is more properly labelled neo-conservative. I find much of it both humorous and destructive. Destructive because many of the ideas that the neo-conservatives hold run counter to the well being of human society. Humorous because I find it full of contradictions and incredible that sane people could fall for much of it.

In the US the neo-conservatives are being taken over by what has become known as the Teabaggers, those who are part of Dick Armey's Tea Party. These Teabaggers do not like way the government in DC operates. They do not like lobbyists. Of course Dick Armey, the retired House Majority Leader, is now a lobbyist. Go figure.

They claim to be real Americans and against terrorists. Dick Armey lobbied for an Iranian terrorist organization. Oliver North, another neo-conservative, betrayed his country and did an arms deal with the Iranians for neo-conservative icon, Ronald Reagan.

These tea bag people want to bring back American values as expressed in the Constitution. Of course they stand behind their heroes like Dick Cheney who ran the country for eight years through his puppet, George Bush. An administration that passed laws narrowing civil rights granted by the Constitution.

A biggy for these baggers is fiscal restraint. They do not want massive government spending and deficits. Strange, that, since most of them support the grossly expensive and needless war currently being waged from Iraq to Afghanistan, a war that is not being funded by a fiscally responsible tax increase to cover its costs.

The Obama administration says that the Teabaggers are driving the Republican agenda, and it appears to be so. This is no surprise given the direction the party has taken over the past 30 years with its program to undo many of the advances made during the sixties and seventies. Republican strategists are seeing the danger that lies in this takeover, and in a recent article Karl Rove wrote: The tea party movement must also distance itself from the "birthers" who insist Mr. Obama wasn't born in the U.S., the 9/11 deniers, and other conspiracy fans who make wild comments the media will seize on to undermine the movement's credibility.

Of course if it does distance itself from these people, and those that turn up to rallies with fire arms strapped on, and rabble rousers like Sarah Palin, Tom Tancredo, Glenn Beck, and so on, there might not be much of a movement left.

Conservative writer Jack Tymann likes to portray the Teabaggers as: hard working, non-violent, non-partisan tax-payers; mothers, fathers, grandparents, grandchildren, Republicans, Democrats, and Independents of all social, economic, religious, and racial backgrounds. This, of course, is somewhat disingenuous since the bulk of the movement is made up of white male conservatives, and almost half of the members are Republican, with most of the rest Independents.

My bet is that there are two kinds of Tea Party followers: those who do not really understand what is going on and are happy to be lead around by the nose like countless unfortunates in history before them; and those who do know and are using the others to further their own selfish agenda.

Some times this whole Tea Party thing makes me think about Germany between the First and Second World War. Dick Armey: Gallup Poll: Karl Rove: Tymann:


Jerry West grew up on a farm in Fresno County, California, and served with the US Marine Corps from 1965 to 1970 including 19 months in Vietnam with the Third Marine Division, and three years at MCAS Iwakuni where he became an anti-war organizer in 1970. He earned an Honors Degree in History at the University of California, Berkeley, and did two years of graduate study there. While in university he worked seasonally in fire and law enforcement with the US Forest Service.

After university he worked for a number of years in the international tour industry in operations and management before moving to a remote village on the west coast of Vancouver Island where he is currently the editor and publisher of The Record newspaper serving the Nootka Sound region. He is a Past President of the Northern California Land Trust, and a member of Phi Beta Kappa.

You can email Jerry West, Writer, at:

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Bill Griffith April 19, 2010 6:04 pm (Pacific time)

 (Editor: Bill, I checked your IP and added your name here, maybe you forgot, but we are always watching for multiple ID's from the same party and if we suspect that, we can the comment.  Please use your name, it does help and is required once a name is established with an IP, thanks.)

It's amusing when some writers for the New York Times claim the Tea Party movement is racist when their entire sixteen (#16) member board of Directors are white, and disproportionately non-Gentile at that. So when someone from this organization refers to tokenism within the Tea Party when non-whites are referenced, I wonder if they really understand that word's meaning? Here are photo/bio's of the New York Times Board of Directors:

Jerry West April 18, 2010 5:25 pm (Pacific time)

TC: you said that "Jerry you may have noticed that currently about one quarter of Americans identify with the Tea Party." From what I have seen it is less than one fith, not on quarter. Either way, a far cry from anywhere near a majority, and the fact that more people know about them now than a year ago is only a testimony to how much noise they make, not whether it makes sense or not, and knowing about does not equate to support, could be just the opposite. Also, since polls have found them both richer and with more intelligence than the average American, that puts them above ordinary and closer to the privileged class.

Let's look at this statement: "simply rejecting big government spending and Obama and the democratic congress' policies. " This tells us that the TP is a Republican running dog. Fact is that every president and congress for 80 years can probably be tagged with big government spending, anyone truly against this would never support either a Democrat or a Republican, but would be looking for a third option. Of course one item of big government spending is Social Security, and I wonder, have you seen many TP signs calling for the abolishment of Social Security? Logically, that should be a central plank, right along with pulling out of all of the needless wars that are sucking the country dry.

TC April 18, 2010 1:19 pm (Pacific time)

Jerry you may have noticed that currently about one quarter of Americans identify with the Tea Party, that means approximately 75 million citizens (and growing daily). I'm pretty confident that the Tea Party people will have the highest percentage of any group who will actually vote. About one year ago less than 5% of America knew anything about the Tea Party. Jerry these are ordinary Americans who are simply rejecting big government spending and Obama and the democratic congress' policies. Regardless of their racial and gender make-up they're bright people who have a mission. I ran into a former Commanding Officer of mine from Vietnam (he's 94), and this guy is still doing highly advanced tactics and strategies, but this time with regards to political demographics of the state I live in on a precinct by precinct level in terms of resource allocation. Fun to see this warrior still looking out for America. You are right about educational backgrounds and levels of intelligence. Many of these Tea Party people also have extensive experience in the business world, so how many people in the whitehouse and in congress do you think have ran a business successfully, and regularly, made a payroll for their employees?

douglas benson April 18, 2010 9:02 am (Pacific time)

I am a union member now I wasnt then and these types of things are why I joined in the first place not to mention a fair wage retirement ,health care ect. I went right down to the wage and hour division ,it takes at least three complaints before they will even start an investigation .This is why the road crews get away with this very thing even though its a well known fact a good majority of thier crews are paid improperly [mostly hispanic workers].

Jerry West April 17, 2010 7:03 pm (Pacific time)

A couple of articles worth reading:

The Tea Party Crowd Needs to Wake Up to Who the Real Villains Are

Allies in the Tea Party

Jerry West April 17, 2010 4:12 pm (Pacific time)

I saw the poll, TC. A high level of education does not guarantee a high level of understanding. Intelligent and ignorant is still ignorant, although given that the average Teabagger is wealthier than the average American, one might argue that rather than from ignorance they are intelligently following the best course that they see to preserve their dominant position over most other Americans.
Interesting points from the poll:
Less than one in five Americans support the Tea Party; they tend to be white males over 45 who support the Republicans and are more conservative than Republicans.
Of course there are some contradictions in what they say and what it turns out that they mean, as in the case of medicare and social security, for instance, which does speak to either confusion or ignorance, or both. I heartedly agree with the 90% that say the country is going in the wrong direction, I have been saying that for 40 years. The 92% that think Obama is moving the country toward socialism may be out of touch with reality. It could be argued that there are already a lot of socialist features in the country. Depending of course on what kind of a definition one wants to give socialism.

TC April 17, 2010 1:29 pm (Pacific time)

Jerry here is a ten second video that clears up a lot of misconceptions, that is if you think the larger media is attempting to get at the facts. Also have you seen the latest internal polls by the NY times/CBS on Tea Party demographics. One thing it clearly acknowledges is the high level of education of it's members compared to the average American. Remember this is a poll from the left of center media. Here's the video:

Jerry West April 16, 2010 11:37 am (Pacific time)

DB: did you file a complaint against your employer with INS or ICE or whatever? If you are in a union, what did it say? Sounds like the problem is the employer, not the illegals. Perhaps the TP should be organizing against scum bag employers who do whatever it takes to cheat their workers, and politicians that won't raise the minimum wage to a decent standard. They are the real victimizers here.

douglas benson April 16, 2010 8:02 am (Pacific time)

When I become the victim of those people ,and I have been over and over from jobs, wages ,ID theft ,ect. how do you expect me to feel . I did not imagine being laid off only to see that my employer hired a bunch of illegals the next day for next to nothing on a prevailing wage job,Wage and hour Div what a joke. . Thats real to me Jerry .

Jerry West April 15, 2010 5:46 pm (Pacific time)

DB, your point is that the thieves that are already here should now dump on the new ones coming in. My ancestors started stealing this land from its original inhabitants over 350 years ago, and continued doing it until most of it was stolen. The only people who have a real claim to being hard done by immigrants are the original inhabitants. To them all the rest could be rightfully considered illegal. People need to eat and obtain the necessities of life, we should have no issue with those who seek to do it by participating in the workplace. The United States is one of the richest and most wasteful societies on the planet, many of the world's poor are unable to support themselves at home because of policies and corporations that come from the US and other developed nations. It is not surprising that they come here to support themselves. Want to change that, then change the economic system and redistribute the pie. Putting the focus on immigration is a diversion used by the system to distract the public from the real issue.

douglas benson April 15, 2010 7:54 am (Pacific time)

Jerry you just made my point for me . You say they are law abiding citizens but pretty much all of them are IDENTITY THIEVES . That fact alone shows that they are criminals and are vitimizing the legal citzens of this country .Not to mention they knowingly broke the law to come and stay here . If I stole your identity wouldnt you want justice ,would you cry about me being sent to prison? I think not.

Jerry West April 14, 2010 5:20 pm (Pacific time)

CW:  You said "For those who assert that the majority of Americans want the "public option" within a national healthcare program, well they cannot cite any evidence."

There are quite a number of polls out there that say differently.  Whether polls are an indication of what Americans are thinking or not is another question.  Wikipedia has an article which lists a number of them:

Note that it was found that most of the Democrats who voted for Brown also wanted the public option, so Brown's win is not really about private or public health care, though it may be about the screwed up alternatives that have been proposed.

One of the propaganda items used by the reactionaries to discredit public health care is fear mongering about Canada.  People who take the time to find out what the Canadian system is really like realize that not only do Canadians get more bang for their buck, they actually like the system.  Americans would be so lucky to have a similar one.  A poll taken in Canada awhile back measures this:

CW April 14, 2010 3:22 pm (Pacific time)

Jerry West I have no idea how many of the readers here have any background in the history of Western Civilization, political science, and a more than casual acquaintance with marxism, and many of the other social sciences, but for those who do, well they understand where you're coming from. Your analysis, including mine, and the posters below will have an opprotunity to see just who is the most accurate in the next year or so. For those who assert that the majority of Americans want the "public option" within a national healthcare program, well they cannot cite any evidence. I will cite the election this past January in Massachusetts whereas Sen. Brown clearly ran against Obamacare, and that from a state that has something very similar. Regardless of past elections and all these well meaning opinions, and I count my blessing that we can have these conflicting points of view, we will soon see how things play out. Of course those who hold Marxist' views will always be walking against a hard unrelenting wind. They are the one's who never really could accept the flow of history and that they just are not that smart when it comes to understanding their environment and how to extrapolate problem solutions, much less recognize those problems that weaken their focus.

Jerry West April 14, 2010 2:14 pm (Pacific time)

Wade: Who is the "us" that I am brainwashed against? The argument that you put forward makes a good case for the fact that the Republicans and Democrats have changed sides on civil rights issues over the past 40 some years. It does not show anything else that is apparent.
Tom: Both statements White Pride and Black Pride are racist. Gay Pride and Straight Pride are more comical, the latter particularly so. Black Pride and Gay Pride are of course statements made by suppressed minorities to assert their worth, the counter statements are made by dominant majorities in reaction. That is, they are the statements of reactionaries. The also represent a tactic used by the ruling class to alienate people from one another so that they can be more easily manipulated.
John: What facts? You put forward more opinion with some facts tossed in that may or may not even support the opinion. Your take on the health care issue is not very informed, or it would not be parroting the fear mongering being cooked up by those who are profiteering from the inadequate private health system that the US currently has. As for the TP reflecting the values of the majority of Americans, ha! Better stated that it reflects some of the values of a majority of Americans, sometimes, and some of the values of a minority of Americans, on some issues it might even reflect my values, but you certainly can not say with any truth that it reflects 100% of the values of a majority of Americans, that would be misleading. And, you may be right about a new type of serfdom, I call it the new feudalism, and that is the end product of a capitalist economic system, and is what is happening now in much of the world. As democratic governments grow smaller and loosen controls over the private sector, the private sector gains more power which is being continually concentrated in the fewer and fewer hands as the corporations devour each other. The end result will be far worse than big government where people at least have some voice, but instead will be big business where corporate CEOs are defacto dictators and everyone, the new serfs, will be under their control.
Douglas: There are probably a lot more decent, hard working illegals than gang members, and they do pay taxes, and many will never be able to claim some of the benefits that they paid for. If you really want to pick on someone on this issue, pick on those who hire them, those who abuse them because they are illegal, and the unions that do not organize them and drive up wages for everybody. You can also pick on government policies that opened the door to cheap imports and allowed US manufacturers to relocate in countries that pay even less than the lowest wages here, and have no qualms about crushing unions. As for health care, I am not pleased at all with the forced payment provision, particularly when there is no public option. I think that Obama Care is a cop out.
Some articles worth reading:




Wade April 13, 2010 12:08 pm (Pacific time)

Jerry your below comments to me clearly show that you have been completely brainwashed against us, that you have no understanding of historical events for us African-Americans, and that's a tragic shame. The branding of the Teaparty as racist is only another Orwellian chapter in the left's own long history of racism. I have always been puzzled how the party that created the KKK as its terrorist wing could attract any black voters at all. Let's face the media has been very successful with their propaganda for the lemmings. Here's a timeline that shows "real history." : [September 9, 1957] – President Dwight Eisenhower signs Republican Party’s 1957 Civil Rights Act. [September 24, 1957] – Sparking criticism from Democrats such as Senators John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson, President Dwight Eisenhower deploys the 82nd Airborne Division to Little Rock, AR to force Democrat Governor Orval Faubus to integrate public schools. [May 6, 1960] – President Dwight Eisenhower signs Republicans’ Civil Rights Act of 1960, overcoming 125-hour, around-the-clock filibuster by 18 Senate Democrats. [May 2, 1963] – Republicans condemn Democrat sheriff of Birmingham, AL for arresting over 2,000 African-American schoolchildren marching for their civil rights. [June 9, 1964] – Republicans condemn 14-hour filibuster against 1964 Civil Rights Act by U.S. Senator and former Ku Klux Klansman Robert Byrd (D-WV), who still serves in the Senate. [June 10, 1964] – Senate Minority Leader Everett Dirksen (R-IL) criticizes Democrat filibuster against 1964 Civil Rights Act, calls on Democrats to stop opposing racial equality. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was introduced and approved by a staggering majority of Republicans in the Senate. The Act was opposed by most southern Democrat senators, several of whom were proud segregationists—one of them being Al Gore Sr. Democrat President Lyndon B. Johnson relied on Illinois Senator Everett Dirksen, the Republican leader from Illinois, to get the Act passed. [August 4, 1965] – Senate Republican Leader Everett Dirksen (R-IL) overcomes Democrat attempts to block 1965 Voting Rights Act; 94% of Senate Republicans vote for landmark civil right legislation, while 27% of Democrats oppose. Voting Rights Act of 1965, abolishing literacy tests and other measures devised by Democrats to prevent African-Americans from voting, signed into law; higher percentage of Republicans than Democrats vote in favor.

Tom Farley April 13, 2010 9:40 am (Pacific time)

"State and national organizations who represent the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community are expressing outrage over t-shirts bearing the slogan “Straight Pride” offered for sale at a Saturday rally of the Tea Party Express..... Gay advocacy groups say the shirts are reminiscent of the “white pride” slogan adopted by racist groups who oppose equality." Funny, I don’t see the gays complaining about the “Gay Pride” tee-shirts that show up at every gay march's. If gays can openly proclaim gay pride, why can’t straights openly proclaim straight pride? And what really IS wrong with a “white pride” shirt if a “black pride” shirt is ok?What would be racist about a “white power” shirt as opposed to the “black power fist”? “Gay advocacy groups say the shirts are reminiscent of the “white pride” slogan adopted by racist groups who oppose equality. Need to fix this: "Gay advocacy groups say the shirts are reminiscent of their “gay pride” slogan adopted by homosexual groups who oppose society recognizing normal and acceptable behavior." There. People are getting innoculated and ignoring all these name-calling strategies by those who simply hate the majority. The blowback is actually happening now.

John Gibson April 13, 2010 8:34 am (Pacific time)

Jerry West I've been following these posts with interest, and thus far all have been opinion-based v.s. other opinions. Sometimes facts need to be introduced to clarify things a bit. As was forwarned by those who understand the folly of denying reality, those in the Tea Parties and patriotic pragmatists, the below article exposes the raw reality of what this new healthcare legislation is bringing. Of course the projected shortage does not include the tens of millions of illegal border jumpers that are here and are coming. "Medical Schools Can't Keep up!" As ranks of insured expand, nation faces shortage of 150,000 doctors in 15 years. A shortage of primary-care and other physicians could mean more-limited access to health care and longer wait times for patients {Something commonplace in other national healthcare programs}. While doctors trained in other countries could theoretically help the primary-care shortage, they hit the same bottleneck with resident slots, because they must still complete a U.S. residency in order to get a license to practice medicine independently in the U.S. In the 2010 class of residents, some 13% of slots are filled by non-U.S. citizens who completed medical school outside the U.S. " [Of course to deny what role "incentives" plays in regards to research and development in drugs and medical equipment would be just as fool hardy to not consider that many of our brightest students will not want to work for a huge unyielding government. I expect the above data and numerous other considerations will be political talking points in upcoming elections, and calls of "racism" or other distractions for pointing out these realities will be ignored, as is the case now. Expect an ongoing lowering of medical standards and rationing as directed by bean-counters on government panels. Did I say "panels?"]. You are looking at the beginning of a new type of "serfdom." Remember congress and their staff (they work for you/us?) are exempt! Also are you familiar with the term "teabaggers" and how insulting it is? In regards to the public option, only a small minority want that type of system. The Tea Party exists for one primary purpose, to reduce the size of government by helping elect candidates who will pursue that constitutional concept. Recently the California gay community could not get enough signatures to put "gay marriage" on the ballot for 2010. Having it as a state voting matter is the way to pursue it at this time and the Tea Party is not going to participate in this matter at this time. Maybe in the future, but they will reflect the values of the majority of Americans and that is well known as per prior voting patterns. Enforcing immigration laws, especially with an "underemployment rate" over 20% is critical. In terms of violence, well there are plenty of different government databases that reflect this violence, and it is growing. Americans are dying every day because the government has failed to act on the laws we have on the books. The democratic congress can quit funding the current wars anytime they want.

douglas benson April 13, 2010 6:49 am (Pacific time)

TC first off our courts have an obligation to stike down laws that are un-constitutional regardless of popular support . Segregation unlawfull roadblocks ect ect. Gays have every right you and I are entitled to period vote all you want . That is the way our constitution was written get over it . Jerry I dont care what your DATA shows about illegal immigrants they are taking my job right now for far less than I can afford to work for . I had to leave the housing industry because working for 3-5 cents a foot to hang drywall just wont cut it oh and to top it off they all wanted to hire you as an independent contractor . These criminals dont pay taxes ,un-employment ,social sec ,workmans comp , undercut bids illegally ,ect .How the heck can an honest businessman or worker compete with that? I know many contractors and they have to compete with the builder,homeowner ect. getting bids to do the work for little more than the cost of material from these criminals .They lose a lot of contracts to these guys ,what does the homeowner care its cheaper right? Last on this is there is no denying that immigrants bring gangs with them have you watched the discovery channel on gangs ? Allmost every one starts with need for workers ,they let the illegals in and bang you have gangs . As for the new health care law Im not too thrilled with forced payment I wanted to see single payer ,cap on profits above cost of care or some such . I know the ugly word TAXES is a hard sell but I would rather they be honest . Why cant our President say I wanted to do this without taxes but its not possible .It would be refreshing .

Jerry West April 12, 2010 7:12 pm (Pacific time)

TC: There are a lot of polls out there, some showing support for a single payer system, some for a mixed public/private system, and some for the other systems. Sometimes it depends on how the question is asked that predicates what the response will be. Most opposition against single payer is fueled by misleading and deceptive propaganda put out by those who are making a fortune off of the US' inefficient and costly system. Having a good deal of experience in both the US and a well run single payer system I can tell you that those who have no financial stake in exorbitant health care costs, and who oppose the single payer system are being duped to act against their own best interest. Also, I am willing to bet that a good size chunk of the 60% who want the current health care package scrapped are people who want a single payer system. In fact, I think that Obama Care should be scrapped for something more like was promised a year ago that included a public option, if not something that eliminates private insurance altogether.
I threw in the gay marriage part because I thought that the Teabaggers were about American values and freedom. It is unAmerican to deny some couples the same rights that are extended to others. I suspect that the Libertarians in the TP do not oppose gay marriage, they, at least, would not be hypocrites.
The problem with the TP not becoming a third party is that if it doesn't it becomes little more than a tool of the Republican side of the business party, and will help elect people who will still support big business, downloading of costs onto the middle class, and the export of jobs, not to mention, if the 8 year Cheney fiasco is any gage, further erosion of civil liberties and basic rights as well as increased deficit spending. If the object is to make the country strong again with more jobs and a more equal distribution of wealth, then the economic system has to be challenged . I don't see the TP doing that.
The illegal immigrant issue is a smoke screen to distract people from the real problems of the country. A classic maneuver use by politicians whenever they need to shift the public's focus. I am personally acquainted with illegal alien labor in the country. Fact is, without illegal immigrants the domestic economy would be worse than it is under the current economic system. Best thing to do is just incorporate the free movement of labor, and unions, in NAFTA and move on. The violence, by the way, is not a product of illegal aliens, but of a failed drug policy. Well failed if the object is to reduce drug use and violence, not failed if the object is to create a huge profit center in the drug sector that the government can tap into for lots of cash.
I have no doubt that most Teabaggers are Americans and love America, as are most of the people that they are opposed to. But do they really understand what America is? I am sure that the brown shirts loved Germany, too. Just loving your country does not make for clear thinking.

TC April 12, 2010 1:31 pm (Pacific time)

Jerry I saw by the content of your last paragraph in your 12:18 pm post that you may have misread what the majority of Americans want? In regards to gay marriage there has not been one state vote, I believe that there have been 18 so far, where the voters have okayed that process. In the state's that do allow it they went over the voter's heads (and wishes) via their state judical system and legislatures. It is true that the majority of Americans want an overhaul of the nations healthcare system, but it is a minority who want a "single-payer system." Maybe you know of some polls that say otherwise Jerry, but from my observations close to 60% of the voter's want the current passed healthcare policy quashed and to start over. It's pretty unlikely that the Tea Party will morph into a third party system. Most are pretty aware of what happened in 1992. Too bad people forgot about one quote by Ross Perot dealing with "that sucking noise is jobs leaving the country." So 18 years later and a constant increase in taxes and fees (on all levels of government) got us here, and one year ago the Tea Party formed. I don't know what is in Tancredo's heart Jerry, but the ongoing violence on our southern border and other growing social ills promulgated by illegals, demanding our immigration laws be enforced is a view held by a significant majority. On April 15th we shall see if there is an intrusion into the Tea Party demonstrations. If so, I expect that they will ID the interlopers asap. These people are Americans, they love America, and they are not going away.

Jerry West April 12, 2010 12:53 pm (Pacific time)

A couple of observations of the TPM groups that support the argument that they are not all bad. It is also pointed out that they suffer from a chronic left-wing problem: internal fighting. :)

Jerry West April 12, 2010 12:18 pm (Pacific time)

TC: Who is to tell if the crash the tea party group is genuine, or a tea party black op? Could be either. Having some familiarity over decades with protests myself, I would not put much past anybody, especially those opposed to a progressive agenda. And, I have listened to Tancredo, he is more than a simple person wanting immigration laws enforced. Sounds like a hate monger to me. Palin, on the other hand is a pretty funny comic.
Wade, it isn't about what nice things the teabaggers do or are, I have no doubt that most of them are decent people. What it is about is the collection of nut bars and radical conservatives that one can see prominently in the movement. If the Tea Party is so American and has so much support, it would form a third party and run candidates against both the Republicans and the Democrats. Until it does it serves as a tool for the business party.
I seem to recall that a vast majority of Americans wanted a public, single payer health care program, which they did not get and which many of the protesters are upset about. Why isn't the Tea Party demanding this option if they are so representative of the people? Same can be said for the needless wars in the Middle East and Central Asia. Where are the End Bush's War signs? In fact, if they believe in sound fiscal policy and an end to deficit spending, where are the no Spending Without Taxation signs? And if they really believe in personal freedom and getting the government out of peoples' lives, where are the signs in support of a woman's right to choose, and gay marriage?
An article of interest:

Wade April 12, 2010 11:07 am (Pacific time)

Here’s what you don’t often see in the coverage of Tea Party rallies: Patriotic signs professing a love for country; mothers and fathers with their children; African-Americans proudly participating; and senior citizens bopping to a hip-hop rapper. Being at a Tea Party rally is not quite like seeing it on TV, in newspapers or online. For those of you who would like to see what the Tea Party is all about from the perspective of an African-American patriot come to my site:

TC April 12, 2010 8:24 am (Pacific time)

Jerry (and others), I recently alluded to in my last post about infiltrators coming into organizations with the primary aim to disrupt and mislead the general public about different groups. Here's some evidence for your review: "A Crash the Tea Party (CTTP) website has been formed: intends on sabotaging the Tea Party organization on the eve of it's April 15 anniversary. “WHO WE ARE, Crash The Tea Party style, is a lesson in Marxism 101: “ WHAT WE WANT: To dismantle and demolish the Tea Party by any non-violent means necessary... {Note: Violent acts have already been committed against Tea Party members}. “HOW WE WILL SUCCEED: By infiltrating the Tea Party itself! In an effort to propagate their pre-existing propensity for paranoia and suspicion…We have already sat quietly in their meetings, and observed their rallies.” But the game-plan is Crash the Tea Party’s most ominous part: “We will act on behalf of the Tea Party in ways which exaggerate their least appealing qualities (misspelled protest signs, wild claims in TV interviews, etc.) to further distance them from mainstream America and damage the public’s opinion of them. We will also use the inside information that we have gained in order to disrupt and derail their plans.” (Emphasis CFP’s). “Sound like fun? It is!! If you’d like to join us, just click on the word “crash!” below." Crash the Tea Party could should be called Agent Provocateurs Are Us! And like the scurrilous snipers of the sidelines they are, they try to pass off their website registrant name as Ben Franklin. This malevolent organization was formed by Jason Levin. Crash the Tea Party was registered April 3, 2010.

TC April 12, 2010 7:33 am (Pacific time)

Jerry my observations over the decades is that all groups have fringe elements who attach themselves to groups who act out inappropriately who can tar that group. Some may even be paid infiltrators whose aim is to harm organizations woth racist behavior. I know quite a number of Tea Party members, even a couple I shared C and LRRP rations with on the other side of the world, who do not have a racist bone in their body. They are primarily concerned about government spending, the economy and why the administration is not concentrating on job creation. As far as the reward for one event, it was a response to what has now been proven to be major lies, not an unusal distraction by those who have historically used this same political method. As far as Tancredo, he simply is opining for enforcing current immigration laws which reflects the same desire for nearly 8 out of ten voters as per most national polls. My prayers are that we can unify as a country by clearing up rumors and finding and acting upon our common concerns. This country has been dividing more and more as each day goes by, and it is not becaues of the Tea Party group that represents millions of every day Americans. Just the same a $100,000 reward should help surface some evidence, if it exists? Appears not so far Jerry.

Jerry West April 11, 2010 10:45 pm (Pacific time)

Did you know that the real victims of -- well almost everything bad about America -- are not the poor, but the rich?

Oh my how they whine. The government is taxing them too much, regulators are forever telling them what they can and can’t do, lawyers keep suing them, ordinary investors are always griping about lost investments and gutted pension funds the rich manage for them. I mean, it’s amazing the rich can struggle out of bed each morning to face just another day of not only not being appreciated, but vilified and taxed.

At least that’s what you’d think if all you did was watch Fox News and read US Chamber of Commerce press releases. Which, of course, is precisely what members of the Tea Party do.


Jerry West April 11, 2010 10:19 pm (Pacific time)

TC: That reward offer is good only for one event. So what? The issue is not about one event, it is about the broader scope of the movement and its conduct. Which is not to say that all or even most, or more than a minority of Teabaggers are racist. Are you arguing that there are NO racists in the Tea Party? Are you arguing that the some of the Teabagger rhetoric that we see in many of the videos and reported in the press is not irrational and extremist? I might add ignorant, too.
As for the reward offer, it may or may not be a bluff with no intention to pay, and not taken seriously by any except people who believe because no one takes up the offer there wasn't any use of the N word or other racially loaded terms or signs at that particular rally. Frankly, I don't know, but have seen enough in general to be able to gage the caliber of a certain part of the Teabagger movement.
Maybe it will clean itself up and expel this element along with the Becks and Tancredos and actually set itself up as an alternative to both the Republicans and the Democrats and stop being a faction within a faction of the Business Party (Dems/Repubs really only represent the business class). For here it sure smells like the TP is a tool being used in a civil war within the Republicans.
Here is something to enjoy:

TC April 11, 2010 10:11 pm (Pacific time)

Editor here is a brief article about the previously mentioned Hundred Grand reward. It appears so far no one has any evidence to collect. The person offering the reward has been on national TV and major newspapers have reported the reward offer. "Not long ago Andrew Breitbart issued a challenge to the anti-tea party left to show proof that the “N” word was thrown at black members of Congress by Tea Party protesters in their walk to Congress just prior to their passage on Obamacare. In fact, Breitbart has offered $100,000 (originally at $10,000) for video or audio proof of any racism during that incident. No one has been able meet the challenge. On the April 7, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka was giving a speech at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and in the audience was one Andrew Breitbart. During the question and answer phase of Trumka’s appearance, Breitbart asked the Union Chief about the supposed racism of the Tea Party movement and asked if he, Trumka, would denounce the violence that union thugs perpetrated against Tea Party folks at the event in Searchlight, Nevada..." Here's the link which has a video of a news conference of Mr. Breitbart making the reward offer: Now to see some actual evidence of racist animus here's a link with some racist screams at a Tea Party speaker:

TC April 11, 2010 6:57 pm (Pacific time)

Jerry I reviewed the video links and did not hear any racist name-calling. As I have posted earlier there is a $100,000 reward offered if anyone can provide proof. A few days ago a union official claimed that he heard the "N-word" while he was within the Tea Party demonstration prior to the healthcare vote. He was asked if it was said by a male or female, tall or short and other descriptions. He did not respond. He was asked what location he was in so video could be reviewed for where he was standing and then they could acquire video of those close to him. There are literally hundreds of "witness videos" available Jerry, but still no one coming forward to get that money. Have you looked at political crowds from the past and how other officials have been treated. Some hung and burned in effigy, and some real nasty stuff spoken, including calling for death and serious injury. Many of those who claimed this happened are on past video's acting pretty primitive. Jerry here is a real quick video of a criminal act against the Tea Party recently There are a plethora of video tapes showing different criminal acts far worse than this, even had someone hospitalized for assault last summer on video. Still other than political speech, no criminal acts by the Tea Party, no intentional spitting, no N-word, no Barney Frank threats, ad nauseum. Appears to be a whole bunch of Cry Wolf . $100,000 would bring something out don't you think? P.S. I noticed on one of the videos you linked they showed a man titled as a Tea Party executive, the guy's a radio DJ.

Editor: OK, this is getting weird; you are saying that there is a $100,000 reward for anyone who can offer video of a tea party protestor using the N-word?  Well friend, that is pretty cool but you aren't so much is using a name here, so at this point I am suspicious.  However, you are making an offer and I am publishing it.  I would appreciate your email address, contact information, etc.  Video shooters out there, this individual is offering $100k and he is on the record.  I have the IP of course, and this party certainly knows, that, and they have made a contract with you.  I have a feeling that there are more than one of you out there who have the goods, just let us know and this nice person will write in the meanwhile and provide payment information and that sort of thing.  TC, that was really generous, deep pockets you guys do have, wow!

Jerry West April 11, 2010 5:50 pm (Pacific time)

TC: I guess whether there are racists Teabaggers or not depends on one's definition of racist.
Protesters taunted openly-gay Democratic Congressman Barney Frank with “faggot,” “homo” and other homophobic slurs and called African-American Georgia Congressman John Lewis a “nigger” as he left the Cannon House Office Building on Capitol Hill. -

As for who are the mindless followers, we might see that in future elections, not that we don't see it in past ones. Mindless followers usually vote for who the demagogues they are following tell them to vote for, or against. So, the best hope of those who are manipulating the Teabaggers is to gather as many mindless followers as possible. This revolution reminds me more of the Southern treason of the 1860s than the break with Britain in the 1770s.

TC April 11, 2010 9:34 am (Pacific time)

Jerry your link to "fair..." is also pretty misleading in it's analysis. Recall the first vote on the healthcare bill and one republican from New Orleans voted "yay"? That was held up in the media until the final vote (when his vote changed to "nay") that the bill had "full bi-partisan support." In regards to the charges of racism and screaming the "N" word over 15 times just before the final healthcare vote as alledged by a congressman, there is no evidence. There is also film of Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. walking through the crowd with a recorder, so he had nothing to share with the media, and he's not the bashful type. Just ask Federal Prosecutors from Illinois. There were literally hundreds of cameras at that event, and there is a $100,000 reward for anyone to bring evidence of racist comments, no takers. That's a lot of money, but we know that these racists comments were never made by Tea Party participants. In fact the criminal acts that have been proven since last summer have been those acts committed against these people. So who really are the mindless followers out there? We'll probably see that illuminated in future elections. Just have a gander at the internals of national polls. Things are changing rapidly. This is a revolution that will be very intense in due time.

Anonymous April 10, 2010 9:50 am (Pacific time)

The Tea Bag party is growing quickly and I imagine the criticism of this organization will continue to grow as they become more powerful. My guess is that for those who are trying to adversely marginalize them, maybe even trying to reduce their membership, it appears this has clearly backfired. This upcoming election in November will probably be similar to what happened in 1994, but even more intense.

Jerry West April 9, 2010 1:38 pm (Pacific time)

Item of interest on this subject:

Magic Bus April 8, 2010 6:26 pm (Pacific time)

Another flash from Eugene, Oregon: Lane County Commissioner Faye (Stumps) Stewart grandson of the Timber Baron Stewart filed a 990 form with the IRS listing assets of $1,684,955,468 in U. S. Government Securities in his “Faye and Lucille Stewart Foundation” I realize Oregon politics might be of little interest to the rest of the nation but currently the IRS is looking into similar “Foundation” activities in several states as the one outlined below. The question is, why did $1,684,955,468 in U. S. Government Securities appear in a Foundation run by a Lane County Oregon County Commissioner and where did it go? In this time period the IRS had just changed how Foundations report funds held by “umbrella community foundations”. The sub fund were required to report their holdings held by the “umbrella community foundation”. The $1,684,955,468 is not a number that a tax preparer would enter without checking many times for accuracy. Faye (Stumps) Stewart Lane County Commissioner, the $1,684,955,468 man Election time is nearing for County Commissioners of Lane County. Ask Faye Hills Stewart II what the number "1,684,955,468" means. Hint go to (after you register with Guidestar), use their search function on the name "Faye and Lucille Stewart Foundation", go to the 990 tab, and look at the 2007 IRS form. On Page 30 of that PDF you will see 1,684,955,468 as value of U. S. Government Securities. Look at the years 2006, 2007 and 2008, where did the U. S. Government Securities come from and where did they go? Does that seem a bit odd that a Lane County Commissioner would have over one point six BILLION in a private Foundation? At best, this shows that Faye (Stumps) Stewart is incompetent to oversee financial matters, at worst…. I’ll leave that up to the reader. My wife and I had a problem in 2007 with another “not for profit” that Faye Hills Stewart II was a board member. Our concern was that the “not for profit” was “invoicing the federal government for services not rendered”, fraud. Could this be the reason Ol' Stumps Stewart did not want people looking into his "non profit" business. Complete story at under Foundation Trilogy . Remember we were chased out of Lane County, Oregon at gun point. See video at

Jerry West April 8, 2010 5:48 pm (Pacific time)

RE: Taxes - -

Jerry West April 8, 2010 5:16 pm (Pacific time)

Kelly, ---- the polls you cite do not differ substantially from what I have written. The Newsmax poll is slightly different from Gallup in the make up of women, but one might expect Newsmax to favor a poll skewed to get that result. The other polls just restate the data to change the impact, one might say disingenuously. To say that 43% are Independents and Democrats is a way to skip over the fact that 49% are Republican and only 8% Democrat, nor does it discern between conservative and progressive Independents. And saying that more than a third consider themselves liberals or moderates is a way to skip over the fact that almost two thirds of them consider themselves conservative. Are they a formidable force? Maybe, with about a quarter of the population apparently supporting them, maybe not. That still remains to be seen. ------------- John Kelly, ---- the fact that the Dems and Republicans vote against each other does not mean that they have very little in common. Think of it as a dog and pony show put on to protect the system. People are supposed to think that they are vastly different when in reality there differences are marginal. Note the roll over on public universal single payer health care, something that was different, a real benefit to the average American, and a threat to the system. The Tea Party, to the best of my knowledge, does not advocate for the biggest and most wasteful chunk of tax spending which is the cost of the Afghan/Iraq War and bloated defense budget. One might say hypocrite when it comes to opposition to wasteful spending. And, even if they justify this spending they become hypocrites if they are not advocating for taxes high enough to cover it without running the country deeper into debt. ---- I might point out, in regards to taxes, that one of the most prosperous times in the nation's history was supported by a marginal income tax rate of around 90% on the top incomes, much higher than it is today. ---- As for a Value Added Tax, we agree that they are bad. Here in BC an ultra conservative government just upped ours which will hurt lower income people more than the rest. Any kind of VAT or sales tax is regressive and should be replaced with a more progressive tax. Taxes in themselves are not bad as long as the public gets its monies worth from them. Here, in the case of health care, our insurance fees are far lower than those in the US, and our taxes not much worse, yet the average person gets far better service per dollar. Still not perfect, but the point is, if you can get things collectively through taxes that would cost you more if you had to get them individually, then taxes are a bargain. ----- Imagine doing away with such socially cooperative institutions like the public military, public law enforcement, public fire protection, and public roads, and having to buy each of their services individually. That would be free enterprise, of course, but who wants it? Getting wise to smoke and mirrors does not guarantee a clear vision.

Hank Ruark April 8, 2010 4:16 pm (Pacific time)

J.K. wrote:"The dirty little secrets about taxes is that they are all passed on to the consumer, and that is everyone." He's correct, but fails to state that expenditures by those on the edge of penury or living in its painful shadow pay much more in proportion than do "the rich". He also is in egregious and probably knowing error stating that all in this nation can become rich, with only incentives as the needed whip to extraordinary effort, with those unwilling to respond consigned to unhappy penury only by their own failures. That's classic conservative tripe no matter how thin he cuts it, and patently untrue for any who will but seek the truth around them and in the authoritative statement of the true conservatives who wish to preserve and protect rather than seek money-power and build political influence for more, via many malign fully disastrous means, as in years since Reagan began slip down that deceptive slope. For detail see The Death of Conservatism; Sam Tanenhaus; Random House; 2009; ISBN 978-1 -4000-6884-5. S.T. is Editor of The New York Times Book Review and The Eeek in Review; with lifetime spent in close contact with political realities he tells it like it really is,with fact supporting solid, essential and continuing function of the real conservatism in our 250 years of pragmatic politics in the nation. Reserve off-cuff comments, to see straight/story set out from historical immersion in facts laid out neatly in his book.

John Kelly April 8, 2010 2:41 pm (Pacific time)

Jerry you wrote: "As for Congress being uninformed, I don't believe that they are, which makes it even scarier that they do what they do. Both the Republicans and the Democrats represent pretty much the same people and protect the system which favors wealth over {communal well being}." Please recall that the republicans voted against both the Stimulus Bill (a major failure) and the Healthcare Bill. They actually have very little in common, and the majority of voters are finally coming around (once again) recognizing that reality. The Tea Party advocates for both massive cuts in current levels of federal spending and in tax cuts for everyone who actually pays taxes. The latter has proven time after time as the best method for raising the standard of living for all. Just because we have a wide gap between the rich (we all can be wealthy in America whereas in practically all other countries you cannot) and the not rich, so what! The poor in America live better than most others in other industrial nations. Do you advocate for equal distribution of all wealth? If so, do you have a successful model you can point out? Of course not. In europe unemployment rates around 10% is normal. Incentives is how people prosper, and once you take those away you have a developing totalitarian society in progess like Cuba and what Venezuela is turning into. As reported recently 50% of Americans do not pay income taxes, so that may help the democrats in securing votes, unless we start seeing gas prices go up. Some in the Obama Administration are talking about a Value Added Tax, during a recession! The dirty little secrets about taxes is that they are all passed on to the consumer, and that is everyone. They will not be able to keep fooling people much longer, the information technology is doing it's job as intended. People are getting wise to the smoke and mirrors.

Kelly April 8, 2010 8:11 am (Pacific time)

Jerry below are some polls that reference the recent Gallup poll you mentioned as using people in their database as those who "support" the Tea Party movement while other polls actually measure those who acknowledge being active members. As you know that could really skew the results. For example the Quinnipiac University poll asserts that women make up 55% of the Tea Party movement. Then we have a poll... "conducted by the Winston Group, reported that the 43% of the people in the Tea Party movement are not Republicans and their major concern is jobs and the economy. This is a far cry from the nonsense ...that some people are telling the U.S., that the Tea Parties are comprised of the extreme right racist wing of the Republican Party, organizing to find a way to destroy the presidency of the first African-American to hold the office." . "...43% of people who identify themselves as members of the Tea Party movement are Independents, Democrats (plus 1% other). More than a third of tea party members consider themselves, liberals or moderates. They tend to be older than the voters on the whole, tend to come from middle-income households. . I guess the bottom line is that the Tea Party movement is a very significant political force, and that fact makes them a target for those who disagree with them. They are getting bigger and stronger. Whatever their real demographics are, they appear to have the time and financial means to argue their concerns. The First Amendment in action.

douglas benson April 8, 2010 7:56 am (Pacific time)

A lot of this comes down to religion and fear. Funny how thier god wouldnt want the poor to have health care ,supports torture,supports war,hates gays,hates drug addicts,hates the poor who are all lazy bums of course ,hate hate,hate,kill kill kill .What kind of values are these . The reins of power are slipping from thier hands and they are afraid . They are scared that thier weapons and ammo will be further restricted or taken alltogether [I am too] . The list goes on and on.American values is code for one nation UNDER GOD [what a crock] The godless heathens are taking over and they are screaming as loud as they can.

Kelly April 8, 2010 7:20 am (Pacific time)

I have been researching the allegation that the Tea Party has engaged in some racist acts, but have yet to find any evidence, other than allegations that appear to be political in nature. Does anyone have a source, thanks?

Jerry West April 7, 2010 6:09 pm (Pacific time)

TC, the Gallup Poll showed that the majority of Tea Party members were Republicans and Independents (over 90%), white and male, and 70% conservative.

The fact that some of them have engaged in racist acts is documented, which doesn't mean that they are all racists, of course, but the tone of some of them, including persons like Beck and Palin do not help their credibility with rational people.
As for Congress being uninformed, I don't believe that they are, which makes it even scarier that they do what they do.  Both the Republicans and the Democrats represent pretty much the same people and protect the system which favors wealth over communal well being.  They both are using the Tea Party movement for their own ends, and those in the movement who sincerely think that it is going to make the kind of changes we need, are not working within reality.  We live in a society owned and operated by the rich for the rich, and the only way to make significant change is to take away their wealth, preferably through a more fair tax system which targets the top brackets far more heavily than now.  I do not see the Tea Party advocating that.

Anonymous April 7, 2010 4:45 pm (Pacific time)

since both parties are owned by the same people, many are saying the obama admin is hitler germany... maybe now people will wake up and see we have a one party system with the same agenda? Ron Paul is leading in all polls.. sarah, and glenn will be seen for the frauds they are, but so will barry soetero, and nancy pelosi.. the truth is coming out. and to the author of this story, the tea party people were taken over by a GOP group and use glen and nancy to promote it...the same tricks the obama admin uses, and more andmore people are waking up to this fact, and you are living in the dinosaur age.

TC April 7, 2010 2:35 pm (Pacific time)

Jerry considering the different political organizations out there that represent a wide variety of views, have you seen any data on which group has the most updated info on what is going on? That is, who is the most political savvy, and most importantly, who is the most likely to vote in the next election? Could they be as uninformed as those in congress who voted for the Stimulus Bill and the recent Healthcare Bill who admitted they never even read the bill(s) they voted on? I don't have the free time personally to join a political organization, just register to vote is fine with me. The other day the Gallup Poll came out with the political party make-up with those in the Tea Party and registered independents and democrats combined make up nearly 50%. As far as the animus that has been directed against them it's pretty much political. The calls of racism and name-calling by them has not been proven, and there is plenty of video on the internet that show these claims have been false. As it is, they seem to be growing stronger, so those who say all those negative things about this organization appear to be helping them. I dare say which party has members who really are clueless? Have you seen those "Person in the street interviews?" These Tea Party people are pretty bright, and they seem to not shy away from threats or made-up controveries. Did you see the egg throwing they endured in Nevada by Harry Reid supporters? I have the internet video address if you haven't seen it. Pretty much thug behavior and many of the participants have been ID'ed. One is a field director for the Nevada Democratic party and a former Hillary Clinton staffer. Expect the video tapes will be be seen in political adds in the Nevada senate election coming up. Maybe even go national. When the television media suppresses stories like this in favor of stories that have no basis in fact, it supports the reasoning in my opinion of allowing corporations to fund adds counter to the corporations that run the media and who have been free to essentially pick the candidates they want.

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