Tom the Dancing Bug: Tea Party taken over by the Tea Party

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123 Responses to “Tom the Dancing Bug: Tea Party taken over by the Tea Party”

  1. Philipshade says:

    I figure anyone who comes into DC under Tea Party moniker that does not advocate Statehood/full voting representation for the District should be beaten senseless and dumped in the Anacostia.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Ron Paul’s fans ran “tea parties” and “money bombs” as early as 2007 to raise funds for his presidential run.

    In 2008 Dick(head) Armey’s “Freedom Works” basically took over the language and imagery used in support of Dr. Paul (and, supposedly, stole the contact lists as well) and began using corporate money to push various neo-con memes out to the then-leaderless disaffected conservatives.

    In 2009 the angry zealots of the nascent tea party movement, bereft of Ron Paul’s leadership and impatient with Armey’s Republican machine driven cluelessness, became essentially an ungovernable mob. Because there’s no coherent party line, anyone can say anything and get on TV as a Tea Party spokesman… so they do! All that’s required to be Tea Partier now is rage, which the crumbling economy and toppling petro-dollar can readily provide.

    Wikipedia’s write up won’t tell you any of this stuff, because a wikipedia entry is generally controlled by whoever is the most persistently, obsessively insane… and that plays to the current Tea Party’s strengths. Currently Armey, Palin, O’Donnell, Beck and many others are attempting to ride the tiger.

    Ron Paul is a principled and honest man, and although I disagree with him in many ways I still respect him. Much like Dennis Kucinich – isn’t it interesting that the only two real statesmen left in the US federal government have nearly opposite philosophies?

  3. Anonymous says:

    So why would a TP apologist sign in under the name of the Dutch communist youth who was Heydrich’s dupe in the Reichstag fire, a staged event that swept the Nazis into power? That is indeed a very strange approach, and makes one question Mr. v.d. Lubbe’s motives, not to mention his sanity.

  4. Miles McCullough says:

    Corporations pursue short term gains instead of long term gains (market share over efficiency), limit consumer choice through market domination, and shift costs onto the public through externalities like pollution. Markets don’t police themselves, so governments have to if the people want justice.

    Of course governments can be bought in our partial democracy, partial plutocracy. Mainstream media is owned by investors and makes most of its revenue from selling adshare to advertisers, not from providing news to viewers. As a result corporate media is easily purposed to spreading a corporate ideology. Politicians cater to their campaign donors in words as well as voting records, which leads to the national discourse further dominated by language approved by the powerful.

    So of course governments are going to subsidize big business and temper real reform any chance they get. But moderate government progressivism is better than capitalist regressivism. Our mission is not just to get progressives into power, but to keep them honestly working for the people instead of turning into corporate tools.

  5. nutbastard says:

    yes, yes, BB likes to beat the teabagger pinata, ridiculing the entire lot of them in direct response to the nutjobs that the very same media outlet BB claims to be without credibility has fed them as being representative of the whole.

    “FOX news is completely evil! You can’t believe ANYTHING on there!”

    fast forward to:

    “Man, did you see all those teabagger nutjobs on FOX news? What a bunch of ignorant hypocrites! They must ALL be a bunch of xenophobic, closet dole-riders! They must be! I saw them, on FOX news!”

  6. Kickstart says:

    I’ll believe the “good” Tea Partiers like the ones claiming to be such in this thread, when I see them convincing the ones carrying the racist and xenophobic signs to stop, allegedly, sullying the name.

    Until then, while the “good” ones do nothing they help create a worse situation through inaction.

  7. Ultan says:

    Ill Lich wrote:
    “‘Tyranny’, does the Tea Party crowd even know what that means? Obama hasn’t actually confiscated guns or jailed dissenters or abolished the Congress and nullified the Constitution. ”

    Well, he hasn’t dissolved Congress… but why bother, when they are utterly spineless, the leadership always eagerly enforces the real agenda and the President has assumed absolute authority to do whatever the real powers require of him anyway?

    He has, despite what you say, jailed dissenters (and seized their children), confiscated some guns (under existing laws – but more importantly greatly increased the disparity between the force available to the people compared to their masters’ enforcers) and in many ways nullified the constitution. He has also claimed the right to assassinate anybody he feels like. He continues all the crimes of the Bush administration. I some ways he has gone even further by conspiring with the insurance, pharmaceutical and medical oligopoly to require every citizen to buy their products at whatever price and terms they care to set while they continue to be immune from lawsuits or restrictions other than those they themselves have solicited as a barrier to competitors entering the market. There is no part of the Constitution that Obama honors anymore than Bush did – the wars of aggression, remote-control mass murder, no-fly list, sneak-and-peek, extraordinary rendition, indefinite detention without charges, assertion of state secrets privilege to cover crimes, warrantless wiretaps, collusion with and price supports for the heroin and cocaine industries (as well as the more mainstream pharmaceutical rackets), and squandered trillions on corrupt, fraudulent unconstitutionally unaccounted bailouts and military appropriations for the real powers.

    Under emergency powers, the President has fully dictatorial control over the US and anywhere US power runs. He can seize anything or anyone, kill anyone, nuke anyplace. He alone decides when there is an emergency (and you’d have to go back at least to F.D.R.’s first months in office to find a time when the US wasn’t formally in a continuing declared emergency). Many of the specifics of the claimed powers are listed in secret executive orders that not even members of Congress are allowed to see.

    This is not a free country. The increasingly thin pretense of constitutional government is maintained for the convenience of power – people want to believe things are OK so much that they will ignore nearly anything, and this misperception of legitimacy supplements the actuality of power. Our government is owned. The same interests own the propaganda outlets, the war interests, the banks, and every other base of concentrated power. To call it “tyranny” is in no sense an overstatement. We are owned.

    • nutbastard says:

      And what is a slave but someone who doesn’t own his or her body, who isn’t privy to the fruits of their labor?

      What is a gangster but someone who demands payment for “protection”, often while simultaneously restricting the ability of citizens to protect themselves, and who inflicts hardship upon anyone who declines their services?

      What is cancer but formerly beneficial tissue expanding and replicating out of control with complete disregard for the resources it thieves from the body for its own self serving purposes?

      There is no virtue in charity by coercion. There is no honor in governance by decree. There is no integrity in debt. There is no respect in secrecy, dishonesty, obfuscation, and indifference.

      But there is no I in team, they say, so pick one. There’s only two that are going to win anyways, and you wouldn’t want to be a loser, would you? Voting is sacred, you wouldn’t want to throw it away on someone who isn’t going to win, right? Or at least you could use it to vote against the guy you hate more – You wouldn’t want to screw up an election for the rest of us by going a third route, would you? Because then it’s YOUR fault that he got in. Can you live with that, can you sleep at night knowing that if you’d only been more of a team player we could have kept him out? What are you, selfish or something? You have a social contract to fulfill. Because you’re part of society. And if you don’t like it, well, you can just get out.

      • zyodei says:

        You win one Internet. It will be delivered to your house tomorrow by the Publisher’s Clearing House crew.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Prufrock451, be sure to notify your friends to check their cars for government-owned tracing devices in the near future!

  9. shawnnotsean says:

    Teabaggers are suckers for Koch.

  10. chgoliz says:

    I’ve been drawing people’s attention to the original Tea Party’s rallying cry as well. Our Founding Fathers understood the necessity of government, and of paying for it…the sticking point was not having representation in the process of making the decisions.

    It seems to me that the new rallying cry (if only they respected the English language well enough to express their thoughts properly) is: only WE get representation, and we don’t want to pay no stinking taxes.

  11. mdh says:

    The tea-party crowd will always fail to see that the analogy actually makes them British.

  12. seanjjordan says:

    I love it. Awesome. Thank you, Tom the Dancing Bug.

  13. Modusoperandi says:

    glaborous immolate (#15) “I think many teapartiers ARE also against corporatism.”
    And they’re against any attempt to regulate them. What’s the end result of that?

    “Many are unhappy with how the baks got the bailout…”
    No. They were only “unhappy” at TARP after the president switched from “R” to “D”. At the time TARP was enacted, they were busy feigning outrage over Obama’s “lipstick on a pig comment”.

    “…and disgusted with bush for violating market principles to do so.”
    {citation needed} (even better, a citation from the time)

    Teller (#20) “Don’t over-worry the TP. It should have the same success as the other powerhouses: Green Party, America First Party, Socialist Party, American Independent Party, Libertarian Party, Peace & Freedom Party, blah blah. Like all the boys Mary sent away, they haunt this dusty beach road in the skeleton frames of burned-out chevrolets.”
    It’s not like the Tea Party is an actual party. They’re Republicans. And they’re encouraging the GOP to go even farther to the Right, even less rational, and even less informed (this, if history is any guide, just pulls the Dems to the Right as well).

    Marinus van der Lubbe (#26) “In rebuttal: i honestly believe that your basic Tea Partier / TPPer is a decent, patriotic, and optimistic person. There are some nuts in our group, and some nuts who claim to be speaking for us, but we’ve got our hearts in the right place. we wouldn’t be getting so much negative publicity if some people in washington weren’t really freaked out by us. and i voted for Obama. I don’t think he needs to be impeached and i don’t think he’s a bad guy, but i really do think it’s pretty much as case of “meet the new boss, same as the old boss”…i think the REAL “powers that be” (the mega-wealthy, bankers, old-school money families) run the country, and that they’ve got some very weird plans in the works, and to get them through they figured on giving us an african american president…some sugar to make the medicine go down with…AND by which to accuse any protesters of their arcane schemes of RACISM, and thus silence them (or at least keep people from listening to the protest). We are (again, for the most part) friendly, intelligent, and embracing of all different ethnicities, religions and ways of life. What we are primarily about is Constitutionality, integrity and accountability in government, less dependence on foreign oil, secure national borders and enforcement of illegal immigration laws, reasonable taxation and understandable tax laws, and a balanced budget / fiscal responsibility. That’s it. There is a large amount of “wriggle room” for other issues, but those are the core ones. And any group of our size is going to have a few extremists or “fringe” types in it. The media chooses to show THOSE types because it makes for good ratings, and makes us look like the bad guys. We are not. If you will lose the PREJUDICE (for that’s what it IS when you judge an entire group by the actions of a few) and check our our FB group (Tea Party Patriots), you might learn a few things and make some friends here. Give it a try :)”
    In also rebuttal:
    Where were the protests on the unfunded enactment of Medicare D? Where was Beck, Palin, et al during the run-up to the [unfunded] invasion of Iraq? Where was the Rightwing outcry for TARP (before the election)?
    In short (and excuse my language), where the fuck was Teabagger outrage from 2001-2009?

    (#51) “But he lost my support with the bailout and stimulus bill.”
    Bailout, better than none. Stimulus (though too small), as well. (Note, too: TARP not his, unless senators have considerably more power than I thought)

    “I honestly believe the Tea Party would be in existence right now no matter who won the Presidency, if he (whichever President) had made the same decisions Obama has.”
    Sure, and America would quake under the weight of all twelve of their feet.

    “But 2008 was it for me. I went against my better judgment and took a chance on ‘em and they have let me down.”
    Two years to dig out from a recession that’s been coming since Reagan was in office is not enough time. Two years while fighting an opposition party filled with cynical manipulators, doubly so.

    “And I’ve never had much faith in the Republican Party, though I now have more of an open mind towards some of their policies.”
    Their new policies: Like Dubya but without Dubya.

    “I’ve decided to take a chance on the Tea Party.”
    Kudos. The Dems have no spine. The Republicans have no plan (other than above). The Tea Partiers have no knowledge, expertise or empathy.

    (#57) “Not a very responsible or long-sighted philosophy, that…”
    Spending out of a recession isn’t responsible? No. Not spending and letting the economy cascade into collective national suicide is.

    (#73) “google prejudice definition and see what comes up.”
    I did, and got zero hits. here. And here. They did.

    Ito Kagehisa (#35) “What do you think of Christine O’Donnell, the Republican senatorial candidate in Delaware who has been endorsed by several of the Tea Party factions?”
    Tea Party Factions sounds like an MMORPG. (Tagline: This time, Patriotism is wearing sweatpants)

    nutbastard (#49) “But there is no I in team, they say, so pick one. There’s only two that are going to win anyways, and you wouldn’t want to be a loser, would you? Voting is sacred, you wouldn’t want to throw it away on someone who isn’t going to win, right? Or at least you could use it to vote against the guy you hate more – You wouldn’t want to screw up an election for the rest of us by going a third route, would you? Because then it’s YOUR fault that he got in. Can you live with that, can you sleep at night knowing that if you’d only been more of a team player we could have kept him out? What are you, selfish or something? You have a social contract to fulfill. Because you’re part of society. And if you don’t like it, well, you can just get out.”
    See: Ralph Nader (2000)

    comment from Cowicide (#78) “Right, they don’t understand that the best way to fight corporations is to expand the power of the government that the corporations control. What dipshits.”
    Instead, they’ll fight corporatism by continuing to deregulate corporations. As far as cunning plans go, it’s practically Republican. No, wait. It is Republican.

    • Cowicide says:

      comment from Cowicide (#78) “Right, they don’t understand that the best way to fight corporations is to expand the power of the government that the corporations control. What dipshits.”

      I didn’t say that, it was zyodei here.

      But, I do agree with your response to zyodei nonetheless.

      • Modusoperandi says:

        Cowicide “I didn’t say that, it was zyodei here.”
        My apologies. I’m nothing if not incompetent.

  14. Anonymous says:

    The analogy is a little off.

    Fox News and big businesses (like Koch Industries) are trying to hide their funding and support of the Tea Party by creating front groups like Americans for Prosperity. They want the Tea Party to appear like a spontaneous uprising of ordinary citizens, not a bunch of dupes that are being completely manipulated by Republican corporations.

    Still funny, though.

  15. Thac0 says:

    I would also like to know; why is is that when i see these Fox tea b.. party people on TV I have not seen a single one dressed as a Native American like a true revolutionary?

    • Prufrock451 says:

      “why is is that when i see these Fox tea b.. party people on TV I have not seen a single one dressed as a Native American like a true revolutionary?”

      Because putting on war paint in the old days said this:

      “I am an Indian. I am a savage. I do not care about your Christian values or your civilized ideals. I am capable of ANYTHING. DO NOT FUCK WITH ME.”

      It doesn’t carry that same connotation today as opposed to, say, walking into Starbucks in camo with a Glock openly strapped to your thigh.

    • Ugly Canuck says:

      Oddly enough, I’ve been thinking lately about how much good stuff from the Iroquois political system ended up informing the substance American Constitution: now what were their views on property?

      ” It was the Iroquois political system, however, that made them unique, and because of it, they dominated the first 200-years of colonial history in both Canada and the United States. Strangely enough, there were never that many of them, and the enemies they defeated in war were often twice their size. Although much has been made of their Dutch firearms, the Iroquois prevailed because of their unity, sense of purpose, and superior political organization. Since the Iroquois League was formed prior to any contact, it owed nothing to European influence. Proper credit is seldom given, but the reverse was actually true. Rather than learning political sophistication from Europeans, Europeans learned from the Iroquois, and the League, with its elaborate system of checks, balances,, and supreme law, almost certainly influenced the American Articles of Confederation and Constitution. ”

      From:

      http://www.tolatsga.org/iro.html

      HEY Prufrock451: “It meant “Don’t fuck With me”, I’m a savage”??!

      What are you, stuck on stupid & ignorant?

      • Saint Fnordius says:

        Not disagreeing with what the Colonists learned from the Iroquois, but by 1773 English prejudices were most likely still in full swing. The natives had always been considered “savages” and “barbarians”. Heck, they still used those terms for the native Irish and Scottish highlanders!

        So I accept that both statements are true: the American government system did learn a lot from what worked among natives, but most colonists in urban areas like Boston treated Indians like modern US Americans treat immigrants.

        The third thing to consider is that they didn’t need elaborate costumes, just enough to scare the bejeesus out of British sailors who were leery of the natives anyways, be they African, Indian or North American. To them, the coasts of all three continents were just plain dangerous. Rather, that’s what the Bostonians would think the sailors would think.

    • Marinus van der Lubbe says:

      Maybe because if they did, they would be accused of racial insensitivity?

      “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t…”

  16. Ugly Canuck says:

    I support inclusiveness and equality, and the Tea Party supporter compares me to Hitler?

    That tells me all that I need to know about the Tea Party -
    not that I expect them to ever ask for my support.

    After all, I’m a “foreigner”, eh?

    • Brainspore says:

      Know how else Obama supporters are just like the Nazis? They favor domestically produced, fuel efficient automobiles. Why don’t they just wear the armbands and break the pretense already??

    • Marinus van der Lubbe says:

      Ugly Canuck: Since I no longer seem to be blocked and can finally respond (although some of my posts were removed last night) would you show me the post where I have compared you to Hitler? If you’ll check, you’ll see that that’s not quite what was done.

      And now that I think of it, a few posts back, you (and many others) were claiming that I compared OBAMA to Hitler (I didn’t do that, either: please show me where I did, if you can), thus spawning the lengthy and spurious “Godwin’s Law” discussion.

      Show me, will you?

      Words are important:

      parse (pärs)
      v. parsed, pars·ing, pars·es
      v.tr.
      1. To break (a sentence) down into its component parts of speech with an explanation of the form, function, and syntactical relationship of each part.

      http://www.thefreedictionary.com/parsing

  17. Anonymous says:

    I haven’t seen a more precise and decisive deflating of the “tea party’s” collective absurdity. Fabulous.

  18. Marinus van der Lubbe says:

    “One would think that the unity of the people, at a time of crisis, would be of greater benefit to the” (fill in the blank)…

    That is a scary, scary thought. Not to be too knee-jerk, but I’m sure Hitler thought (and encouraged) the same idea during his rise to power…

    Besides which, it would depend on the nature of the crisis, wouldn’t it? And who is benefiting from it? And who stands to lose the most?

    As I said, I voted for Obama. But he lost my support with the bailout and stimulus bill. I can’t help but think that, if Bush Jr. had done the same thing (bailout / stimulus) the Left would be screaming bloody murder.

    I honestly believe the Tea Party would be in existence right now no matter who won the Presidency, if he (whichever President) had made the same decisions Obama has. The anti-TP rhetoric is (again, in my opinion) a tactic to diffuse the very real concerns they (and we ALL) should have at this point.

    Obama’s gamble may still pay off. Even if it does, he will still have lost my support. Whether you win or lose, gambling is still gambling. He has spent our collective rent money on lottery tickets. Whether it pays off for him is not the issue. The issue is HE SPENT OUR COLLECTIVE RENT MONEY ON LOTTERY TICKETS…

    • Ugly Canuck says:

      Whose bail-out?

      http://www.nbcwashington.com/news/business/Bush-Bank-Bailout-Overpaid-by-Billions-Study.html

      Bush Jr.’s bailout – of ONLY big private insurance companies and “investment banks” – was a done deal by the time Obama took Office.

      No scraps can be thrown to the little taxpayer or debtor or unemployed person now though – that just “wouldn’t be right”.

      • zyodei says:

        You’re a fool. Obama fully supported the bailouts in his candidacy, and did nothing to reverse them once in office.

    • Anonymous says:

      I honestly believe the Tea Party would be in existence right now no matter who won the Presidency, if he (whichever President) had made the same decisions Obama has.

      I’m sure it would; the organizers paid by Fox News and Koch Industry would have found someone to disagree with them. But I don’t think they’d have gotten the same turn-out, as the people behind the well-known anti-black streak to some of the protests might have stayed home.

    • RBull says:

      That is a scary, scary thought. Not to be too knee-jerk, but I’m sure BUSH thought (and encouraged) the same idea during his PROMOTION OF THE WAR IN IRAQ.

      There, now it’s fixed.

  19. Brainspore says:

    Not to be too knee-jerk, but I’m sure Hitler…

    Too late.

    • Marinus van der Lubbe says:

      What a wonderful and insightful contribution to the discussion you’ve made, Chandler Bing…

      • Brainspore says:

        I didn’t write Godwin’s Law, I just enforce it.

        • zyodei says:

          Godwin’s Law is basically just a “rule” that no person or situation, under any circumstances, no matter how heinous, may ever be compared to the Nazi Regime.

          Unfortunately, some people and situations deserve comparison to Nazis.

          Seeing how it was one of the worst incidents in human history, I think it is entirely right and appropriate to ask whether any contemporary society is seeing similar tendencies.

          “Godwin’s (so-called) Law” is plainly stupid, and any person who mentions it like it means anything reveals themselves to be a nitwit.

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            Isn’t the whole point of memes to have something to repeat so that you don’t have to bother with comprehension? Of course, Brainspore was being humorous.

          • sapere_aude says:

            I think you’ve misinterpreted Godwin’s Law.

            It simply states that, in any online debate, the likelihood that someone will bring up Hitler or the Nazis increases over time; so that, eventually, it becomes inevitable.

            A corollary to Godwin’s Law holds that whoever brings up HItler or the Nazis automatically loses the debate. That’s because, in most cases, invoking Hitler or the Nazis is a sign of desperation; because it’s usually an overreach — e.g. if you’re comparing health care reform to the Holocaust, you’ve obviously gone off the deep end.

            But Godwin’s Law does NOT hold that it’s never appropriate to compare someone to Hitler. It simply recognizes that comparing someone to Hitler is rarely ever justified, and is usually a sign of desperation (or delusion).

          • zyodei says:

            I’m not talking about the wikipedia definition. I am talking about the de facto meaning in the real world. Once someone mentions Hitler, everyone else says “ooh ooh ooh you’re out.” and act like they won the debate.

            The truth is, as George Carlin said, “Hitler lost WWII, but Fascism won.”

            Thus, I think that more analogies to that time are entirely appropriate.

            The fascistic nature of our political system is the elephant in the living room, of COURSE people will be bound to point this out as discussions grow longer.

          • sapere_aude says:

            If Hitler and the Nazis are directly relevant to the topic of debate, then I don’t think anyone would object to someone mentioning them. When “Godwin’s Law” is evoked, it is usually because someone has brought up Hitler and the Nazis in a debate in which they are not directly relevant, in an unscrupulous attempt at demagoguery — for example, through the use of ad hominem (“He’s just like Hitler”) or “slippery slope” arguments (“That’s how the Nazis got started”).

            Obviously, if the debate is about anti-Semitism, institutionalized racism, nationalism, militarism, warfare, totalitarian ideology, demagoguery, genocide, etc., it makes sense that someone might have reason to mention Hitler and the Nazis. But if the debate is about something that, on its surface, appears to be totally unrelated to Hitler and the Nazis — e.g. health care reform, economic policy, taxation, bank bailouts, the political philosophy of Barack Obama and the Democratic Party, etc. — then any mention of Hitler and the Nazis ought to be treated as suspect. I’m not saying that it would never be justified; but it would be very hard to justify; and the burden of proof that it is justified would rest on the shoulders of the person who brings up Hitler and the Nazis.

            So, invoking “Godwin’s Law” would be appropriate in such a case. If you have to evoke the specter of Hitler and the Nazis in order to justify your criticism of Barack Obama, and you can’t make a compelling case that this evocation is justified, then you’re grasping at straws, and you lose the debate. Period.

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            But I’d still like to see Hitler Finds Out That People Are Comparing Obama To Him.

          • sapere_aude says:

            Actually, so would I. Someone needs to make this happen. There’s gotta be a Boinger out there who has the video editing skilz to do it. (Sadly, I don’t.)

          • Brainspore says:

            I’m not talking about the wikipedia definition. I am talking about the de facto meaning in the real world. Once someone mentions Hitler, everyone else says “ooh ooh ooh you’re out.” and act like they won the debate.

            Not really. More like “if you think it’s appropriate to compare Obama to one of history’s greatest mass murderers then I’m not sure the rest of your argument is worth listening to.” The debate may not be over, but I’m less a lot less inclined to pay attention to the person who made the comparison.

            If you want to compare, say, STALIN to Hitler then you’ll get no objection from me because in many ways the comparison is apt. But when you whip out the holocaust to critique things like a proposed restructuring of the tax code by a democratically elected legislature then it’s probably fair to say you’re over-reaching.

          • Modusoperandi says:

            Brainspore “If you want to compare, say, STALIN to Hitler then you’ll get no objection from me…”
            Don’t compare. Combine. “Shitler”.

          • Ugly Canuck says:

            Clues for the clueless:

            http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/2.10/godwin.if.html

            As to “corporate control of the government” – it does seem that the banks have failed to follow the law:

            http://syntheticassets.wordpress.com/2010/10/11/moral-hazard-and-the-foreclosure-crisis/

            So more regulation helps the banks, eh?

            Everything’s so simple – to the simple-minded.

          • Ugly Canuck says:

            “All truth is simple”.

            Is that statement not a complex lie?

  20. thunderhammer says:

    If we’re totally honest with ourselves, that whole “No taxation without representation” thing was an excuse to get angry. If they had given us representation would we have been perfectly happy as a colony of Britain? Fuck no. Just the first in a long line of mostly meaningless catch-phrases in American politics.

    These days we have it down to a science and just toss around words like Socialism, Liberal, Elite, and Nazi, without the vaguest consideration of what those words mean.

    We are and always have been a nation mostly made up of earnest idiots

    • Kimmo says:

      If we’re totally honest with ourselves, that whole “No taxation without representation” thing was an excuse to get angry. If they had given us representation would we have been perfectly happy as a colony of Britain? Fuck no. Just the first in a long line of mostly meaningless catch-phrases in American politics.

      These days we have it down to a science and just toss around words like Socialism, Liberal, Elite, and Nazi, without the vaguest consideration of what those words mean.

      We are and always have been a nation mostly made up of earnest idiots

      WHAM!

      Unfortunately, all those idiots could get a whole lot smarter, and still be idiots… I can’t think of an electorate anywhere in the world that isn’t subject to transparent manipulation of the lowest common denominator…

    • Anonymous says:

      Do you really think that is limited to OUR nation? It is just the way mankind works.

    • jediknight36 says:

      Isn’t that how Canada did it?

    • gnosis says:

      Thunderhammer – Ouch! Aaaand….most likely true.

      • Anonymous says:

        Oh it is true. Tea smuggling was rampant and prohibited by British Law, only East-India company ships were allowed to bring in tea. In an effort to reduce smuggling, the British lowered the duties on tea and other commodities which had to come first to England and could then be re-exported to the colonies.

        So the Tea was cheaper suddenly, which got a whole bunch of Boston smugglers upset. Now the Representation issue was the one that was used and there were certainly other issues, but it is interesting to note that taxes paid by colonials were a fraction of the taxes paid by the people who lived in England. The colonies paid very little in taxes in comparison.

        • Ugly Canuck says:

          Anon #90: Not taxation: Statee-enforced private monopoly on importation was the problem, really: and an imposed monopoly is a form of rent extraction very very close to taxation – it only depends on who banks the profits therefrom – in this case, the East India Company was a “private” concern – albeit with full Royal backing. A partnership, if you will.

          Boy, those Royals sure knew how to run a government like a private business, you bet! Let’s re-instate it in America, why not?

      • djn says:

        It’s also fun to compare with Canada. ;)

  21. Jason Rizos says:

    Oooh–next week do the Saturday Fox News-Paper Tea Party Rally!

  22. Anonymous says:

    It’s gotten so that pulling out Godwin’s Law is like pulling out Hitler — it’s used to quash arguments the poster doesn’t like and may be losing his own arguments to.

    Some comparisons to Hitler and Nazis are valid; most usage today of Godwin’s Law is invalid.

  23. Modusoperandi says:

    “Zay are kumparing me to who?! Zis is unt outrage! I haff killed zo many pepple for nuhzink! Nuhzink! I am inconzolible! Goebbles, fetch me mein bunny szlippers and zum comfort food!”

  24. Anonymous says:

    This related topic was on the Maddow show in late September – transcript here:
    http://openleft.com/diary/20389/tea-party-history-vs-civic-mythology

    In 1974, two years before America turned 200, lefties started a Tea Party movement. A lefty group called the people’s bicentennial commission published what they called a planning and activity guide for citizens’ participation during the bicentennial years. And in that guide, in 1974, they suggested that people form Tea Parties because they said the country needed, quote, “A new party, a movement that will treat tax reform as one aspect of a fight for genuine equality of property and power.” Equality of property? Hmm. Yes, the lefty Tea Party idea from the ’70s, was that the T, the T in Tea Party should stand for tax equity for Americans. Equity as in equality.
    They made some suggestions for lefty Tea Partiers including, quote, “How about a King George exhibit of tax avoiders in some public park with pictures and charts of the loopholes they used?” Why not use the example of the Boston Tea Party to highlight all the loopholes and tricks that rich people and corporations use to avoid paying their fair share of taxes! Why not? The people’s bicentennial commission again, this is 1974 also suggested that left wing Tea Partiers of the 1970s use the slogan, “Don’t Tread on Me.” Doesn’t that just burn you up, conservative Tea Partiers that just one generation ago a bunch of dirty hippies looked at the same Gadsden flag, the same chapter in the history of book about throwing the tea in the Boston harbor and they took exactly the opposite political message from it for today? Doesn’t that burn you up?

  25. Skep says:

    The cartoon is funny, but it also continues to perpetrate the myth that the Boston Tea Party was a protest against higher taxes–it wasn’t. It was largely a protest by tea smugglers against **reduced** taxes on tea. So it is with great irony that the so-called Tea Party uses the event as the core of its anti-taxation identity.

    • Creperie says:

      Skep, your comment is informative, but it also serves to perpetuate the confusion between “perpetrate” (to commit) and “perpetuate” (to further).

    • GlenBlank says:

      The cartoon is funny, but it also continues to perpetrate the myth that the Boston Tea Party was a protest against higher taxes

      No it doesn’t. The organizer doesn’t say anything about “higher taxes” – he says “taxation without representation.”

      Despite the dismissals by earlier commenters in this thread, “taxation without representation” was a very real issue in colonial America.

      Many Americans (and many Britons, as well) believed that the constitutional principles of the British government forbade taxes to be levied on British citizens except by their elected representatives.

      To the colonists, this meant their own colonial assemblies.

      In addition, the revenue generated by the Townshend Revenue Act – the act of the British parliament that taxed tea sold in America – was used to pay colonial governors and judges, with the object of keeping them dependent on England. This was also viewed as a dangerous intrusion into American local affairs.

      The North ministry explicitly opposed repealing the Townshend duties – first, because it might be seen as backing down on the principle that Britain had the right to tax the colonists; and then later, insisting that principle was secondary to the even more important need to raise the revenue to pay American governors and judges.

      And, yes, a great many Americans – a substantial majority, in fact – were perfectly happy being British colonial citizens. And they didn’t object to being taxed – their objections were to taxes not levied by their own elected representatives; and to the use of those tax revenues to pay colonial officials, in order to exert British control over them.

      The claim that these issues were “mostly meaningless catch-phrases” is historically ill-informed at best.

      • Editz says:

        “And, yes, a great many Americans – a substantial majority, in fact – were perfectly happy being British colonial citizens. And they didn’t object to being taxed – their objections were to taxes not levied by their own elected representatives; and to the use of those tax revenues to pay colonial officials, in order to exert British control over them.”

        I wonder if had the colonists paid only taxes levied by elected representatives, would they have given up on the smuggling of Dutch tea, which was a brisk trade both in the colonies and in Britain.

        • Anonymous says:

          And, yes, a great many Americans – a substantial majority, in fact – were perfectly happy being British colonial citizens.

          Well my ancestors sure as hell weren’t, after being burned out of the house by British Catholics (for denying the divine right of kings) and being forced to flee to this country to escape religious persecution.

          In reality, most colonists didn’t think or care about it at all – even though a substantial number were transported or had to flee England.

          Remember, if they so loved being British they would have bloody well stayed in Britain. Nobody undertakes a dangerous, months-long sea voyage because they are perfectly happy where they are.

  26. Phikus says:

    The original Tea Party watershed moment was a rebellion against the monopolistic practices of the East India Trading Co., who had made an exclusive arrangement with the British government. The tea tax was just the icing on the cake, enabling a rallying cry of “Taxation w/o Representation” which, as noted above, was really just an excuse.

    So, if true to their roots, these Tea-baggers today really should be rallying against corporate and special interest control of our government, not against paying taxes, perceived socialism, etc. But as we all know, they are actually funded by corporate billionaires. It’s sad to see so many common folk duped into working against their own interests in this latest flavor of class warfare.

    Some of these folks live next door to my parents, and put out signs with slogans like “REPEAL THE BILL” which anyone who has taken an elementary school government class or watched School Rouse Rock should be able to tall you is ridiculous.

    • glaborous immolate says:

      I think many teapartiers ARE also against corporatism. Many are unhappy with how the baks got the bailout, and disgusted with bush for violating market principles to do so.

      Would you agree that Ron Paul is a kinda teapartyish kinda pol? He’s not exactly in favor of corporatism from what I’ve seen.

      • zyodei says:

        No, no, you don’t understand. There are two sides to the political debate in America:

        The right, who loves corporations and hates government, and the left, who loves government and hates corporations. There aren’t any other opinions other than those, and it is not possible for any person to love or hate both types of institution.

      • Chrs says:

        Oh, they certainly think big corporations have too much influence in government, but apparently they think the solution to too much big corporate control is… (drumroll)… reducing regulations on corporations! Because clearly, what the corporations have done with their government influence is try to get more regulation.

        The logical inconsistency just gets to me.

        • zyodei says:

          Yes, exactly: What the corporations have done with their control of government is lobby for more regulations.

          Regulations that they can either easily deal with or are loopholed out of.

          So that their small competitors are forced out, and the open market is turned into a tight cartel.

          This is why corporations LOVE big government, and the stratospheric rise of corporate power over the last 70 years has closely shadowed the growth of the state.

          This is so stupidly obvious, how is it that people don’t grasp this?

          • Chrs says:

            Late to the party once more, but to zyodei and Marinus, I am aware of the effect of regulatory capture, believe it or not.

            What I’m saying is that businesses are universally against regulations that limit what they can do (without more severely limiting their competitors). Once those regulations are in place they may well favor existing companies, but removing most regulations simply because you are opposed to the general idea is not a rational response to the regulatory capture problem.

          • Ugly Canuck says:

            existing regulations form a barrier to entry for new market participants- but this can hardly be a source of complaint in large industries.
            In the case of hairdressers, barbers or dog-walkers, sure: regulation may be more anti-competitive than socially useful in such mom & pop activities – but for chemical plants? Car factories? Munitions plants? Mining operations? Airlines?
            Securities trading? medical supply companies? Pharmaceutical companies? Construction?

            No regulation of those activities? What, are you mad?

          • Ugly Canuck says:

            Oops sorry Chrs – I meant “Are they mad?” – not ‘you’.

          • Chrs says:

            Man, I really wish they’d actually be constructive and suggest sane changes to the regulatory structure, but the ones that keep coming up are only what business really lobbies for. You know, the good ones.

            I sometimes wonder whether you could use lobbying intensity as a useful barometer (scaled for the size of the related industries, of course) of which regulation is worthwhile. The lower the pressure, the worse the regulation.

          • Ugly Canuck says:

            Tea Party = hokum for the yokels. IMHO.

          • Anonymous says:

            What regulations was BP lobbying for? I know what they’ve been lobbying against.

        • Anonymous says:

          Wiki “Regulatory Capture”

      • Phikus says:

        From what I know of RP, he would seem to be a strictly constitutional Libertarian in Republican disguise. Though there are a few points I disagree with that he has espoused, (his tack on abortion, immigration, and the whole Libertarian laissez faire thang) he would seem to be the only one on that side of the fence speaking truth to power, which is certainly to be applauded in these times. Also, I don’t believe he has a hidden agenda, relatively speaking.

        It would be nice if the TP rallied behind him instead of getting frothed up by the likes of Glenn Beck / Sarah Palin. It would also be nice if the Dems were led by someone with half the principles and sense of Dennis Kucinich. I continue to await the real debate on the issues and people who give a shit about their constituents.

        • Anonymous says:

          According to the Washington Post, the Ron Paul presidential campaign held a “Tea Party Rally” on Dec. 16th 2007 (the 234th anniversary of the Boston Tea Party) and raised $6 million in a single day, from more than 50,000 donors, half of whom were new donors.

          This first tea party event was also described as a “money bomb” and politicians and pundits have since taken up that phrase to describe single-day high-intensity fund-raising efforts.

          Ron Paul is not associated with the current “Tea Party” but is sympathetic to many (certainly not all) of their issues.

          Wikipedia, by contrast, says the Tea Party sprang forth (perhaps from Zeus’s forehead, fully formed) in 2009 in order to oppose Barack Obama’s presidency. Yow, citation needed!

      • Anonymous says:

        Many [Tea Partiers] are unhappy with how the banks got the bailout, and disgusted with Bush

        The problem is that they’ve been told that Obama is responsible for the bailout, and their memories are so short that they believe it. A couple of weeks ago on NPR’s Marketplace, David Frum repeated the lie. He’s smart enough to know the truth, so it was a deliberate falsehood. Marketplace ran a correction the next day…but they still let Frum lie on their show. I guess he’s the best conservative voice available.

      • Cowicide says:

        I think many teapartiers ARE also against corporatism.

        Right, but you miss the point that most don’t understand what corporatism is or certainly the fact that they are unknowingly working in corporatist interests who’ve propped up and steered the tea party from the beginning.

        Let’s face it, being a tea bagger is a pretty fucking pointless and stupid existence.

        Sugar-coat the catshit all you want, but I still won’t eat the catshit.

        • zyodei says:

          Right, they don’t understand that the best way to fight corporations is to expand the power of the government that the corporations control. What dipshits.

  27. Anonymous says:

    The point of Godwin’s Law is this: comparisons to Hitler and the Nazis rarely serve to elevate a discussion or elucidate a point.

    If people invoke Godwin’s Law unthinkingly it does little to improve the quality of a discussion; it is just rule of thumb after all. But the principle that avoiding sloppy comparisons to the Nazis should be a goal of reasonable interlocutors and that sloppy comparisons to the Nazis weaken one’s rhetoric is valuable.

    Those comparisons heighten the emotional tenor of a discussion and invite responses based on raw emotion (rather than passionate reasoning) and muddy our ability to make intelligent distinctions between superficially similar things. There are certainly analogies to be drawn between Nazi Germany and contemporary capitalist democracies, but it requires careful analysis to make those analogies meaningful. That type of analysis is not possible in a debate on the Internets.

    The Nazis were very efficient at building roads. Is good infrastructure a precursor to death camps? Impassable dirt roads are built-in speed bumps slowing down the machinery of military consolidation and goverment control. Obama is proposing a second stimulus based on infrastructure spending. Hmmm…

    • Marinus van der Lubbe says:

      @Anon (#108)…I totally agree with you.

      The problem is that my post (#51) which spawned all this did NOT actually compare Obama to Hitler. Read it and see. It didn’t even compare Ugly Canuck to Hitler. Many people jumped on the “Godwin’s Law” bandwagon and took the ball and ran with is (a couple of metaphors there, I know)…and almost no one (well, TWO people, I think) actually commented on or responded to the real SUBSTANCE of the post.

      THAT is another “scary scary thought”…which I’ll NOT liken to National Socialism…

      • Antinous / Moderator says:

        Earlier on you complained that people weren’t addressing the substance of your post, but your recent comments mostly just seem to be boo-hooing about how people are being mean to you. Does this represent an ideological shift on your part? Because it’s growing tiresome.

      • Brainspore says:

        Well you were clearly trying to make SOME kind of comparison to Hitler, unless your fingers just happened to fall across those letters by pure chance. Feel free to elucidate. All the more hilariously it was in a sentence that began “Not to be too knee-jerk…” and then brought up the biggest knee-jerk known to the internet.

  28. Ugly Canuck says:

    As I recall, my call for American people to come together to what’s right for the American people – to overcome the politics of faction – was met with your rejoinder, that that call – to do what was right for the American people – was akin to Hitler’s thinking, and/or rhetoric.

    But who cares, and so what?

  29. Marinus van der Lubbe says:

    There’s plenty of “do” in most of your posts already…no worries there :)

    And you’re absolutely right. Who cares, and so what?

  30. Church says:

    Hah HAH! The opposing extra-party movement is a victim of corporate capture! Not like ours! We just get ignored as a bunch of discontented hippies! Advantage us! Wooh! *pops non-alchoholic sparkling grape juice*

  31. GlenBlank says:

    Another insightful cartoon comparison between Tea Parties past and present was posted a while back on August Pollack’s Some Guy With a Website:

    It Was Just Like the Boston Tea Party!.

  32. Marinus van der Lubbe says:

    Sigh…I didn’t support BUSH, either. But Obama has taken the ball and run with it, and who is it that the famous “buck” is said to stop with? The sitting president. I said “he (Obama) lost my support with the bailout and stimulus bill”. And he DID. If Obama had had any common sense, any foresight, any “let’s tighten our belts and get through this” stick-to-it-iveness (instead of “SPEND SPEND SPEND”, he might still have my support…as it is, he went with it, and he has my support no longer. He rolled the dice with our country’s heritage, so to speak. THAT’S the part (well, ONE of the parts) I don’t like…A smart man will see when something isn’t working and change tactics. What we’re seeing is a kind of gambler’s mentality…ala “well, I’ve lost THIS much, so I might as well keep going…”

    Not a very responsible or long-sighted philosophy, that…

    I believed in and supported the Democratic Party ever since I was old enough to vote. But 2008 was it for me. I went against my better judgment and took a chance on ‘em and they have let me down. And I’ve never had much faith in the Republican Party, though I now have more of an open mind towards some of their policies. I’ve decided to take a chance on the Tea Party.

  33. Teller says:

    Don’t over-worry the TP. It should have the same success as the other powerhouses: Green Party, America First Party, Socialist Party, American Independent Party, Libertarian Party, Peace & Freedom Party, blah blah. Like all the boys Mary sent away, they haunt this dusty beach road in the skeleton frames of burned-out chevrolets.

  34. Ugly Canuck says:

    Oh yeah, for those reading Godwin’s passage, from the link above:”So, I set out to conduct an experiment – to build a counter-meme designed to make discussion participants see how they are acting as vectors to a particularly silly and offensive meme…and perhaps to curtail the glib Nazi comparisons.”

    Words are important:

    glib adj.

    1. glib – marked by lack of intellectual depth; “glib generalizations”; “a glib response to a complex question”

    2. glib – having only superficial plausibility; “glib promises”; “a slick commercial”

    3.3. glib – artfully persuasive in speech; “a glib tongue”; “a smooth-tongued hypocrite”

    From:
    http://www.thefreedictionary.com/glib

    …and I am at a loss as to how a foreign national advising the citizens of the USA to do what’s best for the American people as a unified whole can be likened to Hitler, of all people!

    I’ve said it before: there is much about the USA that I simply do not understand.

  35. ill lich says:

    “Tyranny”, does the Tea Party crowd even know what that means? Obama hasn’t actually confiscated guns or jailed dissenters or abolished the Congress and nullified the Constitution. In fact he hasn’t even raised taxes. What is the issue other than the fact that he’s not white, and they think he’s a Muslim? Socialism? If he’s a socialist, then why doesn’t the Socialist party endorse him? It’s insane.

  36. Marinus van der Lubbe says:

    good grief: is this most of you people do here? pick apart and dwell on and over-analyze the least important aspects of each other’s comments, while conveniently ignoring the real substance within them?

    • ethicalBob says:

      “good grief: is this most of you people do here? pick apart and dwell on and over-analyze the least important aspects of each other’s comments, while conveniently ignoring the real substance within them?”

      Marinus, Because an important part of discourse is assuring that arguments validly follow the rules of logic.

      HOW something is said can be as important to the validity of the argument as the spirit of what is being said.

      One of the main problems with discourse today (and the media, blogs, etc. do not help this issue) is the lack of solid logical foundations to arguments and discussion.

      Logical fallacies leave arguments indefensible because they aren’t based on evidence or sound thinking, they rely on rhetoric or opinion; neither of which make for positive discourse.

      • sapere_aude says:

        Kudos, ethicalBob. I was contemplating a similar reply earlier, but got distracted by something else (MythBusters was on tonight) and never wrote it. You expressed pretty much the same sentiment I had in mind; and you expressed it better than I would have.

    • Teller says:

      Saying “you people” is racist.
      Sorry, couldn’t resist proving your point.

      • Ugly Canuck says:

        He meant to say “what’s the matter with us”, I’m sure…as he is in here with us, after all, shaping the discussion.

        He forgets that he too is one of “you people” (that is, one of “us”) – while he posts here.

        Just as the tea party, and , yes, those who attack the tea party too, are all of them US citizens: thus so, they ought not to be fighting amongst themselves with such immoderate vehemence… it’s kinda disgraceful, if ya asks me – which I am well aware nobody has.

        And now a song for everyone, regardless of petty political differences:

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=liq_wYFkMoU

    • Ugly Canuck says:

      I like to grind the details – as should any competent administrator or legislator or judge or voter or citizen, when it comes to the laws which, and the people whom, govern us.

      Wotsamatter – don’t you like real politics?

    • Ito Kagehisa says:

      good grief: is this most of you people do here? pick apart and dwell on and over-analyze the least important aspects of each other’s comments, while conveniently ignoring the real substance within them?

      Well, I wouldn’t say most people here spend all their time doing that, but certainly a lot of that goes on.

      Remember you don’t have to bother replying to people who just want to pick a fight because they don’t like your team jersey.

      I voted for McKinney, so the Green Party could keep their slot on the ballot in my state. I had the luxury of knowing in advance that Obama would win my state by a landslide, so it didn’t matter I’ve got a few issues with McKinney as a candidate.

      • Antinous / Moderator says:

        I usually vote Green in the hopes that the two-party system will some day come to an end. Voting for Obama was unpleasant at the time and even worse from the perspective of two years of continuing or extending Bush era policies.

  37. Ugly Canuck says:

    IIRC Marinus brought a hint of the Nazis into this thread with him, with his nym as Anon #28 pointed out above – so perhaps his puking up Hitler, after posting a link to a Holocaust web site for a definition of ‘prejudice’, no less, fits a (healthy? sick?) pattern.

    But with a supporters like Marinus – if he really is a Tea Party supporter – I’m even more confident…in my skepticism of the bona fides of this “instant political party”.
    Not that “instant presidential candidates” are necessarily any better, mind you.

  38. Marinus van der Lubbe says:

    ok Ugly, if you’re suggesting i was the person who posted comment # 28, you’re wrong. and speaking of “wrong”, what’s wrong with you? now you’re implying i’m a nazi or something? google prejudice definition and see what comes up. i picked a link with multiple definition and used the one i liked best: it was a coincidence that it was from a holocaust info web site.

    you are really living up to your name, dude…

  39. ethancoop says:

    It seems to me that the Tea Party is merely an effort to re-brand & reorganize the Republican party under a new name since the Bush years did permanent damage to the public perception of the name Republican.

    • Anonymous says:

      I see. Sort of like Christianity rebranded the concept of public execution. Thanks for the explanation of how the Republican Party formed.

  40. rnoyfb says:

    This reaction to the Tea Part movement is just as ridiculously stupid and moronic as the Tea Party movement. You people, and the Tea Party, ought to quit confusing popular mythology with history, if you’re going to make historical claims.

  41. Marinus van der Lubbe says:

    In rebuttal:

    i honestly believe that your basic Tea Partier / TPPer is a decent, patriotic, and optimistic person. There are some nuts in our group, and some nuts who claim to be speaking for us, but we’ve got our hearts in the right place. we wouldn’t be getting so much negative publicity if some people in washington weren’t really freaked out by us. and i voted for Obama. I don’t think he needs to be impeached and i don’t think he’s a bad guy, but i really do think it’s pretty much as case of “meet the new boss, same as the old boss”…i think the REAL “powers that be” (the mega-wealthy, bankers, old-school money families) run the country, and that they’ve got some very weird plans in the works, and to get them through they figured on giving us an african american president…some sugar to make the medicine go down with…AND by which to accuse any protesters of their arcane schemes of RACISM, and thus silence them (or at least keep people from listening to the protest). We are (again, for the most part) friendly, intelligent, and embracing of all different ethnicities, religions and ways of life. What we are primarily about is Constitutionality, integrity and accountability in government, less dependence on foreign oil, secure national borders and enforcement of illegal immigration laws, reasonable taxation and understandable tax laws, and a balanced budget / fiscal responsibility. That’s it. There is a large amount of “wriggle room” for other issues, but those are the core ones. And any group of our size is going to have a few extremists or “fringe” types in it. The media chooses to show THOSE types because it makes for good ratings, and makes us look like the bad guys. We are not. If you will lose the PREJUDICE (for that’s what it IS when you judge an entire group by the actions of a few) and check our our FB group (Tea Party Patriots), you might learn a few things and make some friends here. Give it a try :)

    • Ito Kagehisa says:

      Thank you for your comment, Mr. van der Lubbe. It’s rare that we get a voice from inside the Tea Party movement here on Boing Boing. I hope you will continue to contribute!

      What do you think of Christine O’Donnell, the Republican senatorial candidate in Delaware who has been endorsed by several of the Tea Party factions? I personally won’t be voting for her because I believe she is fiscally irresponsibile and doesn’t sufficiently respect the separation of church and state, but I’m interested in how she looks from your perspective.

      • Marinus van der Lubbe says:

        @ Ito:

        Thanks for your kind words. In answer to your question, I think O’Donnell started out as a bit of a loose cannon, saying some very nutty stuff (along with some very shrewd stuff) in order to get face time, and possibly to endear herself to the 90s 20somethings/30somethings; the MTV generation. Only she wasn’t very good at it; her version of Clinton’s sax playing. Some of the things she’s been attacked for are quite picayune: things that pretty much everyone does. I’m not making excuses for her, though. Exaggerating one’s resume is something we’ve ALL done, but we all don’t usually get microscopically examined on our words or get called out for it. I generally say my college GPA was 3.7, whereas it was actually 3.69: if I give the accurate, factual number, I sound like a dick, so I round up. Does that make me a liar? Actually, yes. But does it matter? Only if one is being picked apart by the media. But I digress. I think O’Donnell is a pretty decent person (that’s my opinion, going by my “gut”). I don’t have the same opinion of Palin: she has not risen to the call of her “position” (if not in politics, then the media), in my opinion. She is still a rather uninformed, ditzy-seeming and somewhat unintelligent woman. With a good few months of relatively intense study and application on her part, she could have gotten past that. But she has not chosen to do so, which speaks volumes about her as a person: she’s coasting. There is still time for her, though, to achieve the greatness that has been, if not thrust upon her, then certainly offered to her, though I seriously doubt she’s ever make the cut, the way she’s going.

        So, long answer to your short question, I like O’Donnell and think she’s a good person and (potentially) a great politician. But I’m no fanatic: if she screws up, I’ll revise my opinion of her and eat crow :)

    • Anony Mouse says:

      In the words of one of America’s truly great figures, “Patriotism is the the last refuge of the scoundrel.”

      I would suggest that you look to the scoundrels in your midst. Your motives as a Teabagger may well be, if not perfectly pure, then perfectly human. But I think you’ll find that the movement is a puppet of the most venal elements of the GOP.

      That said, I would not be suprised that, just as organisations like the Mujahudeen or individuals like Saddam Hussein did, the Tea Party will prove a wilder animal than its masters expected. Sadly, I don’t expect that this turn of event would be a good thing.

    • Tynam says:

      I’d like to second Ito’s comment; thanks for joining us, Mr. van der Lubbe.

      Personally I think you have an over-optimistic view of the party; bitter experience in my own country suggests that a large group of “decent, patriotic, and optimistic citizens” is usually the second-biggest threat to democracy around.

      But then, I’m in the UK right now and lacking up to date first-hand knowledge of the Tea party, so my opinion is near-worthless. I’d be surprised but very pleased to be proven wrong.

      • Ugly Canuck says:

        Words are important.
        Today’s word:

        dupe (dp, dyp)
        n.

        1. A person who functions as the tool of another person or power.

        2. An easily deceived person.

        • Marinus van der Lubbe says:

          Words sure are important, aren’t they? Here’s another one:

          prejudice
          n.

          1. A preconceived attitude, opinion or feeling, usually negative, formed without adequate knowledge, thought or reason. Prejudicial thinking is often based on stereotypes.

          http://www.holocaustcentermilwaukee.org/education/resources/terms.php

          • Ugly Canuck says:

            Your link did not work.
            Here you go:

            http://www.holocaustcentermilwaukee.org/education/resources/terms.php

            It is not like I have a vote, you know.

            But it seems premature, IMHO, to give one’s support to people who lack any record at all in government (except insofar as their views were reflected in Bush or Republican policy while they were in power) at a time of apparent crisis: particularly so, it would seem to me, when those appealing for that support have shown themselves to be so adept, so sophisticated, at the politics of factionalism.

            One would think that the unity of the people, at a time of crisis, would be of greater benefit to the Republic. But is the message of the Tea Partiers really one of unity and cohesion for the American people?
            Or is it not rather the vitriol of faction? Of division of the citizenry?
            Of blaming the OTHER faction for all problems – while accepting NONE of the responsibility, nor any accountability whatsoever, for the results of one’s own, or one’s allies, past actions?
            While in the meantime, things say the same, or get worse: as the vitriol of factionalism has effectively paralyzed any effort to improve the situation….
            Is not the “message” of the Tea Party, in reality and as presented, an appeal to the emotions (an thus simply a chimerical effect of rhetoric, of eloquence and of venue) rather than to the minds of the voters, in the settlement of political affairs?
            And are not those emotions, at bottom, but an hatred for one’s fellow citizens – or for a sub-set of them?

            Such “emotional” appeals for specific policies, and the thinking which grounds them, from politicians, and others, have been quite persuasive to peoples, over the centuries – and have sometimes (or is it, have always?) proven catastrophically disastrous for those who have fallen for them.

  42. Ugly Canuck says:

    We ugly ones often are.

    Words are important:

    ugly
    adjective

    1. unattractive, homely (chiefly U.S.), plain, unsightly, unlovely, unprepossessing, not much to look at, no oil painting (informal), ill-favoured, hard-featured, hard-favoured;

    2. unpleasant, shocking, terrible, offensive, nasty, disgusting, revolting, obscene, hideous, monstrous, vile, distasteful, horrid, repulsive, frightful, objectionable, disagreeable, repugnant;

    3. bad-tempered, nasty, sullen, surly, threatening, dangerous, angry, forbidding, menacing, sinister, ominous, malevolent, spiteful, baleful, bodeful.

    WYSIWYG.

  43. Ugly Canuck says:

    Oops, forgot to cite the reference – definition from:

    http://www.thefreedictionary.com/ugly

    …but what’s in a nym, eh?