Saturday, April 18, 2009

Were the Tea Party Protests Carefully Staged Events, or Did They Represent a Genuine People’s Revolt?

According to various news sources, the recent tea party protests have attracted hundreds of thousands of Americans in cities all across this great land of ours.

It was quite a sensation. Angry and frustrated citizens carried signs with Revolutionary War slogans on them, bags of tea were hurled over the White House fence, Bill O’Reilly and Keith Olbermann got to open their cavernous mouths a little wider, and Texas Gov. Rick Perry threatened to have his state secede from the rest of the country (Whoo-Hoo!).

Before I continue, I just want to say that if the good governor does us all a favor and delivers on his threat, the new flag of the Lone Star State should feature a bible and a rifle soaked in petroleum.

Now back to the tea party. As can be expected, the responses to this event have been split largely along ideological lines. Many conservatives claim that the protests represent a mass, spontaneous revolt on the part of a large cross-section of Americans who are fed up with incompetent lawmakers in Washington and their gluttonous spending habits. Many liberals, on the other hand, claim that the protests are nothing more than carefully orchestrated Right-wing temper tantrums.

And then there are liberals like pop culture celebrity and Air America veteran Janeane Garofalo, who said on MSNBC’s “Countdown” Thursday that those who took part in the tea party protests are nothing but a bunch of intellectually challenged bigots who used this event to go after President Obama simply because he is black.

"Let's be very honest about what this is about,” Garofalo told “Countdown” host Keith Olbermann, a liberal commentator who also happens to be a monstrous dick in a cheap suit. “This is not about bashing Democrats. It's not about taxes. They have no idea what the Boston Tea party was about. They don't know their history at all. It's about hating a black man in the White House. This is racism straight up and is nothing but a bunch of teabagging rednecks. There is no way around that."

On April 8, Media Matters for America, a liberal media watchdog organization, accused FOX News of actively promoting the tea party protests, saying “Despite its repeated insistence that its coverage is ‘fair and balanced’ and its invitation to viewers to ‘say “no” to biased media,’ Fox News has frequently aired segments encouraging viewers to get involved with ‘tea party’ protests across the country, which the channel has described as primarily a response to President Obama's fiscal policies.”

FOX News commentator Bill O’Reilly, another monstrous dick in a cheap suit, shot back by saying that his network was merely covering a newsworthy event, while other networks were ignoring it altogether. Media Research Center, a media watchdog organization run by a conservative named L. Brent Bozell III, has charged MSNBC and CNN with covering the tea party protests in a biased manner.

In a piece titled “Radical Right-Wing Agenda,” Lee Fang of Think Progress, a liberal blog, says that local tea party events were organized by two lobbyist-run, Right-wing think tanks named Americans for Prosperity and Freedom Works. “The two groups are heavily staffed and well funded, and are providing all the logistical and public relations work necessary for planning coast-to-coast protests,” Fang writes.

He then elaborates on this claim:

FreedomWorks staffers coordinate conference calls among protesters, contacting conservative activists to give them “sign ideas, sample press releases, and a map of events around the country.”

Freedom Works staffers apparently moved to “take over” the planning of local events in Florida.

Freedom Works provides how-to guides for delivering a “clear message” to the public and media.

Freedom Works has several domain addresses — some of them made to look like they were set up by amateurs — to promote the protests.

Americans for Prosperity is writing press releases and planning the events in New Jersey, Arizona, New Hampshire, Missouri, Kansas, and several other states.

New York Times columnist Paul Krugman also accused conservatives of “astroturfing,” writing in an article Sunday that, “The tea parties don’t represent a spontaneous outpouring of public sentiment. They’re AstroTurf (fake grass roots) events, manufactured by the usual suspects. In particular, a key role is being played by FreedomWorks, an organization run by Richard Armey, the former House majority leader, and supported by the usual group of right-wing billionaires. And the parties are, of course, being promoted heavily by Fox News.”

Rachel Maddow, a liberal host on MSNBC, also weighed in, saying, “One of the controversies about the teabaggers is the fact that insider D.C. corporate-funded PR shops and lobbying groups have done a lot of the organizing and promotion for these events. That‘s controversial because it‘s astroturfing. It‘s disguising a formal top-down organized paid for things as if it‘s some spontaneous grassroots event.”

And media figures aren’t the only ones making this claim. On April 15, a day that saw the largest number of tea party protestors in the streets, House Speaker and Botox poster girl Nancy Pelosi told an interviewer for Fox TV in San (Short for “Sanatorium”) Franpsycho that, “This initiative is funded by the high end... it's not really a grassroots movement. It's astroturf by some of the wealthiest people in America to keep the focus on tax cuts for the rich instead of for the great middle class.”

Tea party participants and their supporters on the Right vehemently deny that the protests were the work of astroturfers. Chris Good of The Atlantic Monthly wrote on Monday that members of the three conservative groups responsible for guiding the movement – FreedomWorks, Americans for Prosperity, and dontGO – say that the event’s grassroots foundation is indeed genuine.

“The movement is not tied to the Republican Party, group spokesmen said, despite a report that at least 10 House Republicans will be speaking at events across the country,” Good writes. “Eric Odom, founder of dontGO, has infamously turned down a request from Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele to speak at the group's Chicago event.”

Adam Brandon, a spokesman for FreedomWorks, pointed out that his organization and others like it were simply employing the activist network model that has been used to great effect by Left-wing activist groups such as MoveOn.org.

"Activists in general have learned a lot from the last election," Brandon told Good. "You'd see 50 MoveOn.org people standing outside a gas station. We feel just as strong about our issues."

”Progressive groups have employed that strategy in support of the same economic agenda the tea party protests seek to overturn: groups like ACORN and Americans United for Change have utilized their e-mail lists of supporters to organize field events across the country in support of the stimulus,” Good writes.

In other words, if FreedomWorks is guilty of astroturfing, then so is MoveOn and other groups on the Left.

With regard to charges that the tea party movement is nothing more than an elaborate ploy to bolster the fortunes of the GOP, Mr. Odom says he rejected the RNC chairman’s request to speak at his group’s event in Chicago in order to make it clear that dontGO’s goal is “not to promote Republicans at all.”

“I voted for Bob Barr,” he adds.

Personally, I sympathize with some of the protestors' grievances. I believe that our government’s fiscal policies are horribly misguided. Of course, I’m no economist and I could be wrong about this, but that’s just my gut feeling on this issue.

But a question has been nagging my brain ever since I first learned of these tea parties: Where were these protestors during the spend-till-you-drop years of the Bush administration? If anyone deserved a tea party, it was our own King George.

40 comments:

  1. Olberman and O'Reilly-it just doesn't get any better than that. I can only speak from where I am from; Worcester, MA. It appeared to me that it was a collection of youths who leaped at the chance to become the next Abbie Hoffman. The underlying difference is that Hoffman was an intelligent man, albeit a bit idiosyncratic, and these "protestors" seemed to me to know little about what they were protesting against. I would be willing to bet that the majority of those involved would have flunked the test given to those who seek citizenship. I grew up in the midst of the hippie movement (I married one)and to their credit; they were at least educated on the purpose behind their marches and protests. I've said it before but I'll say it again; protesting against big government is not an original concept and hardly a specific one. IA brought up a great point when he admitted to not being an economist-me either. I wonder how many of these protestors have degrees in economics, political science, or anything else remotely related. As far as the bigotry angle; sorry, but I'm not buying that. Great piece IA.

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  2. There is no doubt in my mind that 99% of those protesters made less than $250,000 in income last year and are, therefore, NOT affected by any raise in taxes and do, in fact, benefit from the Obama tax cuts for the working middle class. Also, none of these protesters spoke out during the Bush years of tax cut for the rich and spend economics. I don't really care much about the astroturf complaint. As you pointed out, they are using techniques used by all grassroots organizers. It didn't bother anyone but the libertarians then and it doesn't really bother them now. Most of the signs whining about taxes and spending were just bogus. And those wearing "patriotic" costumes and waving American flags were an insult to the original tea party goers.

    But what was readily apparent to anyone not wearing red-colored glasses or working for Faux Noise, racism and racial hatred was out in full force and the result was the Republican "base", such as it is, showing themselves to be the ignorant racist bastards they really are. This is something myself and others will carry into the elections of 2010 and 2012. I have saved a ton of pictures of these people and their children just to remind more centrist types just what these folk are really about when they start lying about their agenda for the new election cycle.

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  3. Oh yes. There is no doubt that Faux Noise was supporting and pushing the tea-baggers. Liberal or not, Think Progress and Media Matters have a ton of Faux Noise clips that illustrate in great detail the pumping of the tea-bagger celebrations.

    I think it was an appropriate name. Tea bagging is a term used by the sexual underground to describe the sucking of male testicles. The celebrations were celebrating the sucking of corporate testicles by lower middle class white right wing serfs. Why these people vote and demonstrate against policies that benefit them is one of the big mysteries of our age.

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  4. I don't really have a whole lot to add to what Dean and Oldfart have to say about this. But I do agree, these people protesting tax cuts that are going to help the vast majority of them because the yapping bozos at Fox told them to definitely suck large quantities of balls.

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  5. Well this planning thing by FOX and those other two groups I never heard of is an f'ng lie.

    I helped organize 4,000 in NH and 20 groups that were local including mine were the catalysts.

    FOX decided they would cover something because they knew it was going to be giant.

    The two groups you mentioned had zero to do with it. The liberal propaganda machines were working overtime, including Janet Nazipolitano's hastily released report that said we were fomenting violence. This caused the liberal blogs to go all a twitter about it, and of course, there was not so much as a parking ticket, let alone anything racist. Janeane Garafolo is a.... something I can't post here.

    Please learn what this was about. Obama the terrible just handed us over to the foreign bankers, the people who put him in office.
    He is a treasonous snake.

    Obama Endorses Soros Plan to Loot America
    http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/9902

    "By embracing the “global plan for recovery and reform,” which is how it was
    officially described, Obama explicitly endorsed International Monetary Fund
    (IMF) surveillance of the U.S. economy, creation of a global “Financial
    Stability Board,” the expanded use of a new global currency called Special
    Drawing Rights, a new global warming treaty, and costly fulfillment of the
    United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). This is in addition to the
    explicit and reported commitment of over $1 trillion in additional taxpayer
    money to the IMF and the World Bank.

    The Special Drawing Rights proposal, which is a vehicle for further U.S. foreign aid to the rest of the world, was the brainchild of billionaire George Soros, who told CNBC’s Maria Bartiromo that the G 20 conference was a “success."

    And just so you know I'm not excusing Bush, "...Obama has sold out the
    sovereignty of the United States and has laid the groundwork for the death of
    the U.S. dollar as the world’s dominant currency. While President Bush started
    this insidious process of holding G 20 meetings, Obama has taken the process
    much further down the road. It is truly unprecedented."

    If anything is controlled, it's George Soros who manipulated this crisis and has made billions on it thanks to his puppet Obama who is working to loot us to give the money to his banker friends in Europe.

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  6. What a freakin' joke, anonymous. congratulations for getting 4,000 people to come out and whine they the government is spending too much now trying to fix the problems the spend till you drop policies of the previous administration.

    so maybe you didn't get any help from the lobbyists -- you got cheated, bud. there was a buncha money and Web sites and everything going out for free to teabaggers for their teabaggeries.

    You're buying the insane theories of the right hook line and sinker. They're the lies, bud. They're the lies.

    And by the way, Moveon was organized in the 1990s, not overnight to trash Obama.

    And if y'all didn't see racism at these events, you went in blind.

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  7. One more thing, anonymous. When you throw in gratuitous references to Nazis and/or Hitler ("Nazipolitano") it's an automatic loss. Nothing you said after that is worth the microbytes it took up.

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  8. You don't get 250,000 people to show up on a work day for some sort of a staged event.

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  9. Oh please. What a pathetic number. You people have no idea what grassroots organizing is or you wouldn't say something that ridiculous. Maybe you don't get 250,000 of YOU out on a workday, but but in this country? Nationwide? That's it? What a joke.

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  11. Great discussion, guys. Thanks for your comments. Anonymous, here is my source for the conservative groups allegedly guiding the tea party movement:

    http://politics.theatlantic.com/2009/04/the_tea_party_movement_whos_in_charge.php

    As I said above, i agree that our govt is spending too much money and I'm leery about the prospect of more federal control in the private sector, but even those of you who support tea parties have to admit that it looks suspiciously partisan to some people when nothing like this happens during 8 years of Bush and only occurs right after Obama becomes president.
    As for the racism thing, when you get this many people together for an event whose purpose is to blast the government, you're bound to have a few bigoted assholes sneak in here and there. But I'm sure the vast majority of people who participated in the protests aren't like that at all.

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  12. It made immigration rallies look tiny by comparison and I didn't hear this kind of crap being said about them by Liberals.

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  13. You lefties are a joke. I attended a tax day tea party protest myself. This was indeed the first time I ever attended a protest. Between the 5 different one's in my area the media estimated the total crowd to be close to 5,000 across the bay area.

    You boneheads don't have a clue what these were about obviously. Either that, or you really are socialists and you really do want government controlling your lives.

    These events were not sponsored or set up by any freakin media moguls or Dick Armey. These were all set up at local levels by local people who are concerned about the direction this country is headed. It was we locals using our own money and time to put these things together.

    It had absolutely NOTHING to do with taxes, NOTHING to do with Obama, and NOTHING to do with parties. This was about concerned citizens from all parties who can't stand the out of control spending and crooked politicians. Bush and the Republicans got this ball rolling and Obama and the Dems are trying to make damned sure they finish it.

    If you think this is a GOP thing - then that means you are nothing but ignorant lefties just toeing the line - being sheeple for the Dems. Try thinking for yourselves for once instead of Liberals vs. Conservatives or Democrats vs. Republicans.

    If you would actually listen to what the message was - you might actually find out you agree.

    Just out of curiosity - are you guys happy that there were 9,000+ earmarks in the omnibus bill that increased 9% over last year despite the fact that Obama promised no more earmarks?

    Are you happy that just with Obama's budget it will triple the size of the national debt by 2012 and will be equal to the entire GDP of this country?

    Are you happy about bailing out private businesses on taxpayer dollars and then giving bonuses to those highest paid executives?

    Are you really happy that your great grandchildren will be born with $114,000/yr debt just on the interest alone? That's per child born in 2032.

    Are you really happy that Congress signed in that stimulus bill without ever reading it?

    Seriously people - how can you be happy with your government that is out of control? THAT is what these protests were about. If you had attended one in your local area you would have heard the speeches. They were not anti-Obama. They were anti-big government and anti-out-of-control-spending government. They were anti-politician. Not anti-Democratic.

    Since you did not attend one - and all you are doing is repeating the sheeple talking points fed to you by the MSM and people like Maddow, Cooper, and Olberman - you remain ignorant and have no right to speak out against it. You are absolutely clueless. and FYI - 250,000 is a lowball estimate by the MSM. The numbers are still coming in and its getting closer to 400,000 nationwide. And - you know what - that is absolutely what a grassroots campaign is all about. That was just the seeds being sown. There are many more being planned throughout this year and those numbers will indeed grow as people begin to wake up and actually understand what this is all about.

    Quit being sheep and starting thinking for yourself. And before you decide to call me a shill for the GOP - I'm a Conservative in the Constitution Party. I don't support either of those two major parties.

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  14. "And before you decide to call me a shill for the GOP"

    YOu won't get that from me, buddy. Thanks so much for commenting. Always love your input. As I've said countless times before, I consider myself a slightly-right-of-center Indie and, quite frankly, I think you're a stark raving Right-winger (and I say that with amused affection), but I've been to your blog many times before and I can definitely say you have NEVER given Bush and the Repuglycons a free pass. You've scorched their sorry asses more times than i can count.

    "I'm a Conservative in the Constitution Party. I don't support either of those two major parties."

    Amen, brother. I voted for McCain last November but sometimes I wish i had gone instead for the Constitutional Party candidate, mainly because McCain picked Sarah Palin as his running mate. I have absolutely no use for the CP's radical Christian and antitax agenda, but I like their noninterventionist stance on foreign policy and trade. But then, I'm too much in love with those RINOs, whom I'm sure you hate. I want Arlen Specter to stay in the Senate while you probably want his head mounted on your wall.

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  15. Hey Mark - I would consider myself a right-winger as well - no doubt. I too have a problem with the CP as far as their anti-tax and far Christian agenda. However, as far as their stance regarding the constitution and the fact our country, government, and courts should follow the rule of law as written in the constitution - they are the only party that takes the same stance as I.

    I'm not opposed to taxes. Government needs taxes to run. However, what I am opposed to is government taxing me to redistribute it to butter the bread of donors, special interest groups, bailing out private businesses, and welfare, etc. The constitution does not authorize that kind of spending.

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  16. "However, what I am opposed to is government taxing me to redistribute it to butter the bread of donors, special interest groups, bailing out private businesses, and welfare, etc."

    I know this is going to sound utterly stupid, but I actually LIKE paying taxes because I see that as an essential part of being a citizen of this kickass country (as long as the're not TOO high). And i have no problem raising taxes in order to reduce the deficit, especially when that deficit is unusually high. I'm a traditional fiscal conservative in that I believe that if you want to lower taxes, then you must first lower spending. I totally reject the belief cherished by the supply-siders that you can cut taxes while increasing spending because the revenues created by the (presumed) resulting stimulus will more than make up the difference. As far as I can tell, that theory has proven to be monstrously wrong.
    Like you, I’m against giving taxpayer money to special interest groups and failing businesses. As far as welfare goes, I’m not against helping people who have lost their jobs as long as they’re trying their best to get another one and I believe we should help the disabled. However, those who don’t want to look for work should not get paid one cent.

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  17. "the fact that our country, government, and courts should follow the rule of law as written in the constitution-they are the only party that takes the same stance as me." I think you need a serious lesson in history. The Supreme Court or courts, for that matter, do not follow the rules of law in the Constitution-they interpret them. In 1803, Chief Justice John Marshall in Marbury v Madison declared that the Court now had the power to rule acts of Congress as unconstitutional. Keep in mind he based this decision on verbiage in said constitution that wasn't really there. "Marshall's manuever was the first to demonstrate that the power of law is the power of judges to interpret it." You might want to Google John G. Roberts Jr,. Esq to see how the Bush family played fast and loose with him while dangling a Supreme Court nomination in front of him. The GOP have been manipulating it for centuries and if you'd like; I will provide more decisions and backroom politics if you'd like. I am still having trouble with understanding what the big deal is. Even if we go with BoBo's # it still equates to 8,000 protestors per STATE-OOOOOH! And I will close with just two questions: 1)Where was the outrage when our young men and women were being killed in a war that we had no reason being in? 2)What type of alternative plans have this group proposed? My guess is the same type that the GOP has proposed-nonexistent ones. 8,000 per state-that's about as many people as I played HS football games in front of. They'll fizzle out the same way as the other ignorant extremist groups do when they fail to have a specific agenda. And yes, I did attend one of these "protests"- a whole lot of shouting with "zero" substance.

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  18. Unfortunately you can't post images in these comments. At least I don't think you can. But, I can access a slew of images of people holding signs supporting violence and even children holding those signs. And signs supporting racism. And "good" "god-fearing" right wing serfs exposing their children to those influences. There is no way that these "demonstrations" were anything but about violence and racism. Oh yes. And "genderism" and "right-to-control"ism and every other right wing disease there is.

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  19. Oh yes, Bobo. In your entire rant, other than whining, you present NO solution for the economic disaster Obama inherited from bankrupt Republican and right wing economic policies. You may think you are not a GOP shill, but you have the same solution they have. None at all. So, if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck.........

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  20. And who says I didn't go to a teabaggery? Assumptions are really quite amusing. And I'm still laughing that you people think your rallies were so big.

    By the way, the violence-promoting, secession-promoting, anti-Obama (socialist etc) signs were the majority.

    I, too, like paying takes. I like what I get for my taxes. And I'd be opposed to paying "too much," too, but we don't. We have one of the lowest tax rates in the world.

    As for spending, it's necessary right now. And when we get out of the mess conservative bull got us into, that "debt" our "grandchildren" will owe will drop fast. First, though, we have to fix the mess. Continuing the policies of Reagan, Bush, Clinton and Bush would only make it worse. Thank god we have somebody who won't do that in office. As soon as we get the rest of the idiots out of Congress, the better.

    As for earmarks, I don't find them as repulsive as Fox "News" and the other bloviators tell us we should. Can they be better regulated? You bet. And that could have started back when Republicans controlled Congress, but no, best to wait for the GOP to get out of office before you start whining. I don't recall Obama promising no earmarks in Bush-era bills, either.

    But government is and should be about much more than how much money it spends. Unlike conservatives, I'm not locked in the past. I understand that the world has changed and our ideas of government must change with it. We're in quite a state of flux right now. It'd be so much easier if there weren't that handful of people still dragging their feet to take us back to the era of the robber barons. Almost succeeded there -- look at Wall Street.

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  22. ARRRGHH! Need EDITOR!

    Earmarks are a great Faux News and right wing boondoggle. They comprise less than 1% of the budget. They quite often simply direct the spending of monies that have already been allocated. And they are one way Senators and Representatives can benefit the people they supposedly serve. Some are without a doubt unreasonable but, I think, if you add up all the unreasonable earmarks on one hand and compare them to, say, unreasonable defense department procurement methods you will find that the unreasonable inefficiencies of the Defense Department grossly out spend the few unreasonable earmarks. I'd recommend anyone that is really interested to actually research what your representatives have done with earmarks. You will be surprised.

    I am amused by McCain and his "no earmark" history. While that is completely true, his Republican counterpart from Arizona and several Democratic Representatives from Arizona team up to see that Arizonans get what they need from the federal coffers in spite of McCain's neglect of his own supporters

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  23. A number of folks have said what is probably enough, and my opinion isn't too different, at least in some ways.

    But I DO think that the tea parties WERE orchestrated. There was too much in the way of footprints, the signs were too much alike from State to State, and they were just too damn coordinated to be spontaneous.

    Spontaneity isn't coordinated. Spontaneity isn't the same from state to state, either, dadgumit. Spontaneity isn't something the press gets an invitation to a week in advance!

    CNN had a guy on yesterday that was trying to justify them by talking about - wait for it - trickle down economics! Tax cuts for the rich so they can pay us workers better!

    Sound familiar?

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  24. I don't think anybody suggested they were "spontaneous." I think what was said was that there was not one leader of it.

    When you go to protest anything there are only so many signs you can create.

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  25. Oh, come on, that's gotta be the weakest defense I've seen, surely you can do better than that!

    Whether there was "one leader" or not doesn't prove diddly when the whole thing was surely orchestrated by a group, all of whom have one thing in common - bashing Obama and making the Democrats' lives miserable.

    And, yes, there are a tremendous number of ways one can say the same thing - the English language is infinitely variable. So when one sees similar protests in cities across the US, ALL of whom have a similar theme, ALL of whom have a similar agenda, and ALL of whom have similar, if not identical, signage, there is but one conclusion - it was orchestrated from a group that had an overall agenda!

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  26. Besides, you can't claim that the organizers of this were just using the same tactics used by left wing groups organizing similar protests in one breath and then in the next, claim that it wasn't centrally organized!

    Either it was a grass roots movement, in which case it would have been much less similarly themed and carried out, or it was managed by a central group calling the shots and handing out "suggestions".

    If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it isn't likely to be a goose!

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  27. They seem to be about the massive spending bills going on in DC so naturally they would have the same agenda. And so what if they did? I'm all in favor of a smaller government.

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  28. Smaller government? And what's your proposal to get there? Not cutting the bloated Pentagon budget I'm sure. Privatizing Social Security so our retirement can be dependent on the Wall Streeters who wrecked the economy? Thank god that didn't fly when Bush tried it. Food stamps and unemployment because we all know that's full of welfare fraud? Police? I know. The arts. Education. Things that can be done much better privately, like they were in the 19th century.

    Nobody wants to see unnecessary spending in Washington, but what is unnecessary spending depends on who you ask most times.

    I would suggest that rather than promote and organize pathetic little demonstrations that did little more than bash a Democratic president for hours on end that we all sit down and talk about what is and isn't unnecessary. And by that I don't mean sit down and give each other ultimatums.

    Unfortunately, massive spending by government is the only way to get us out of the mess brought on by greed and lack of regulation. Please note: nobody else is spending. Jobs are dropping like flies. The "free market" is stuck and it won't get unstuck without money. And that means we've got to get the money to the people who will spend it. Not the corporations and the banks. The people who buy things. They need jobs. They need unemployment. They need help with their mortgages not because they were greedy and bit off more than they could chew -- with the help of greedy lenders who were looking to make some more milions -- but because they lost their freaking jobs or they had a devastating accident.

    This ain't no black and white world anymore. Actually, it never has been. But "either/or" is not an option any more.

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  29. I used to be in favor of a smaller government too.

    But reality is a bitter pill to swallow. And the reality is that now we have a larger population, more complex economy, more commerce with other nations, and we cannot, as a government at our current size, meet the demands of protecting our people from the dangers those represent.

    Salmonella in peanut butter sound familiar? Or a tanking economy due to unregulated financial products?

    sorry, but smaller is NEVER going to happen, and the Republicans know it. they just don;t want YOU to know it until you vote them back into office again.

    On a platform calling for a smaller government that they will never implement.

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  30. Spending trillions of taxpayers dollars we don't have which means having China and Japan buy our debt and increasing the money supply thereby raising inflation is your solution? Wat flavor of Kool Aid did you drink? The Germans disagree with you and they are the smart ones.

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  31. Gee, Harrison, the Germans weren't very smart in your rant about Afghanistan earlier. What changed? And, inquiring minds want to know, were you screaming about Bush when Bush was spending trillions for his illegal war? While cutting income? And making his rich buddies happy?

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  32. Oh, geez, not THAT again.

    Borrowing money does NOT increase the money supply. Perhaps you should go back to economics 101 to learn a bit more about just how the economic system we have really works. We borrow money from banks all over the world, and the terms are standard terms that do not disadvantage us in any way towards our adversaries.

    The FED manages the money supply, and in times of financial trouble where money is not circulating, it is a commonly agreed upon solution that the money supply NEEDS to be loosened up. It can always be tightened back up as the economy heats back up. Less money in the economy is DEflation, and the only way to counter it is to increase the money supply.

    The Germans are in the thick of this with us, and there were almost as many German banks, on a per capita basis, as American banks, that invested in those infamous bad mortgage packages. This situation is unprecedented, and neither the Europeans nor us have a lock on the solution.

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  33. The Germans have strongly resisted going into debt in order to "buy" their way out of the economic situation. In fact, this has caused a lot of friction between Germany and France.

    As far as inflation goes... you are wrong:

    The unprecedented explosion of the US fiscal deficit raises the spectre of high future inflation. According to the Congressional Budget Office, the president’s budget implies a fiscal deficit of 13 per cent of gross domestic product in 2009 and nearly 10 per cent in 2010. Even with a strong economic recovery, the ratio of government debt to GDP would double to 80 per cent in the next 10 years.

    There is ample historic evidence of the link between fiscal profligacy and subsequent inflation. But historic evidence and economic analysis also show that the inflationary effects can be avoided if the fiscal deficits are not accompanied by a sustained increase in the money supply and, more generally, by an easing of monetary conditions.

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/ae436dbc-2d09-11de-8710-00144feabdc0.html?nclick_check=1

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  34. You forgot to add something, Harrison:

    Inflation is looming on America’s horizon

    By Martin Feldstein

    Published: April 19 2009 18:54 | Last updated: April 19 2009 18:54

    I don't know who Martin Feldstein is or whether is views are worth a damn. Why don't you tell us something about him? Instead of copying him word for word.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Hey Old F**k, those protesters were probably jackasses who believe O.J. was guilty (what idiots?) and who think that business is more effective at achieving fiscal success than government--what misguided, evil, capitalist pigs! They probably don't even like dictators such as Castro or Chavez! Your analysis, as usual, is well-argued, objective, and spot on.

    ReplyDelete
  36. As if giving you a biography of him would mean anything.

    Most economists agree we will soon have inflation. Believe it or not I could care less.

    ReplyDelete
  37. One opinion by one economist, and I can guess that he was particularly cherry picked for his agreement with you.

    And guess what? The ones that DISagree with you are the ones the current Administration is actually listening to. So I guess we'll get a chance to find out.

    Nice try.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Actually, I subscribe to the Financial Times and just read the article but that's okay. One reason why the Chinese, who hold over $1 trillion in US debt, want to move away from dollars is because they are afraid of inflation that is on the horizon. You don't dump over $1 billion into the economy and not get inflation... that's just commonsense.

    Obama and his crack team of economists are probably wagering that it's better to spend our way out of a recession and deal with inflation later. And I'm sure if you look through your "source" enough you'll find inflationary risk mentioned there, too.

    "Nice try" as you say.

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  39. Considering that our worst problem at the moment is DEflation, Obama & crew probably have a point. Inflation has been a boogieman for thirty years now, and we've managed to keep it under control. Now that prices are actually retreating...

    Like I said, we'll find out, won;'t we?

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  40. JB - OJ wasn't guilty. He was found innocent by a jury of his peers. According to the right wing, that's proof of guilt so it must also be proof of innocence.

    Guess what. 28 years of "business knows economics better than government" put us in this depression. What's good for General Motors just isn't always good for America, is it? Allowing a bunch of conniving robber barons to run wild just doesn't work. But your kind are just too enslaved to figure that out.

    Yes, evil dictators. I notice you only name left wing dictators. While your sainted Bush palled around with some of the worst right wing dictators in the world and kissed, yes, kissed a prince of the same people who killed 3000 Americans while holding hands with him.

    Go away, JB. You have nothing to offer but the usual hypocritical ignorant nonsense.

    ReplyDelete

 

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