Patterico's Pontifications


Tea Partying in Santa Monica

Filed under: Current Events,General — Jack Dunphy @ 7:16 pm

[Guest post by Jack Dunphy]

The Divine Mrs. Dunphy and I (along with Mrs. D’s sister and niece, in from out of town) drove down to Santa Monica this afternoon to see for ourselves what all this Tea Party business was all about. We didn’t expect much of a turnout; Santa Monica, after all, is a town where every fourth car is a Prius with an Obama sticker on it. Conservatives in Santa Monica and L.A.’s Westside tend to operate as Christians did in the Soviet Union: maintain secrecy at all costs. But imagine our surprise to arrive and find a few hundred people gathered at the entrance to the Santa Monica Pier, some waving signs and flags, others just milling about in a state of semi-wonderment at being in the company of so many fellow citizens who, like themselves, are immune to Barack Obama’s many and wondrous charms. And just as surprising were the many horn blasts from sympathetic drivers passing by on Ocean Avenue.

There were of course some in attendance one might label as eccentric, and most of the news reports will no doubt focus on them so as to discredit the movement now coalescing, but for the most part the crowd seemed pretty normal. A small contingent from Code Pink were the ants at the picnic, but no one seemed to pay them much attention. I don’t think they stayed long.

I know there were far larger gatherings elsewhere today, but for Santa Monica it was a remarkable display. I can’t wait for the next one.

–Jack Dunphy

The Left does not care about you, peasants

Filed under: General — Karl @ 11:58 am

[Posted by Karl]

Rolling Stone political reporter Matt Taibbi confesses ignorance in a piece titled, “The peasant mentality lives on in America”:

It took a good long while for news of the Teabag movement to penetrate the periphery of my consciousness — I kept hearing things about it and dismissing them, sure that the whole business was some kind of joke. Like a Daily Show invention, say. It pains me to say this as an American, but we are the only people on earth dumb enough to use a nationwide campaign of “teabag parties” as a form of mass protest, in the middle of a real economic crisis.

Marc Cooper, director of Annenberg Digital News at the Annenberg School for Communication at USC, also professes his ignorance regarding the point of the tea party protests.

The White House confessed that Pres. Obama remains unaware of the tea parties.

Of course, all of the above have the resources to easily discover the point of the tea parties.  Contrary to the elitist bloviations of people like Cooper, these protests are not simply about Obama’s proposals to tax upper-income earners (with the dampening of economic dynamism that would ensue).  they are also about the ginormous tax bill Obama proposes to slap on all taxpayers — or the debt being piled on our children — even as Obama abandons most of his proposed tax cuts (most of which were transfer payments in reality).  They are protests against the “too much, too soon agenda” Obama is pursuing at the expense of the real economic crisis.

What Obama, Taibbi and Cooper are really saying is that that they do not want to dignify the voice of the peasantry.  Accordingly, it is worth noting that a “peasant” is “a coarse, unsophisticated, boorish, uneducated person of little financial means.”  The Left used to at least pretend it spoke for the poor and unsophisticated.  Now, from Pres. Obama on down, they cannot even bother to pretend.

Update: Jake Tapper tweets: “The White House never said POTUS was unaware of tea parties.” Funny, that’s what ran on Tapper’s network.   Of course, the semantics are secondary to the fact that the White House ultimately does not care about these protests or their agenda.


Today, Tea Parties. What Tomorrow?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:00 am

It’s Tax Day, and across the country, “tea parties” have been organized to protest Barack Obama’s out-of-control spending and other oppressive and dangerous policies. Writing in the Wall Street Journal, Glenn Reynolds says:

The good news for Republicans is that, while the Republican Party flounders in its response to the Obama presidency and its programs, millions of Americans are getting organized on their own. The bad news is that those Americans, despite their opposition to President Obama’s policies, aren’t especially friendly to the GOP.

True dat. There’s a lot of us out here with passionate, unbridled opposition to the disaster that is the Obama administration . . . but we’re left with seemingly nowhere to go. Sarah Palin and Bobby Jindal, bless their hearts, aren’t Ronald Reagan. And that’s who we need. I’m about ready to grab a shovel, drive up to Simi Valley, and start digging. Only, there has to be somebody alive who could do the job.

Our haughty overlords in Big Media will doubtless discount the sentiments behind these demonstrations as Fox News-inspired Astroturfing. That’s a mistake. The anger is out here. It’s palpable.

But it needs to be channeled into action, or it won’t do us any good at all.

The problem is, what action? Bigger donations to the same clowns who let the deficit balloon during the Bush administration? Who were too gutless to fight lawless filibusters of qualified judicial nominees? Who allowed Barack Obama to cruise to victory by hanging the mortgage crisis around the neck of George Bush — without a fight? A crisis that was a product of neglect by both parties, quite notably corrupticrats like Barney Frank and Chris Dodd?

No. We’re not falling back in line with these morons.

But we have to do something.

All across this country today, you’ll see the frustration. You’ll see the high emotions prompted by a sense of hopelessness about the direction of this country. It will be a useful demonstration of political anger.

But tomorrow, what will we do with it?

Patterico: Rightwing Extremist. Wouldn’t You Like To Be One Too?

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 12:38 am

David Neiwert is having multiple orgasms tonight as a ridiculous government report confirms every zombie-filled nightmare he has ever had about those Awful Rightwing Extremists.

The report is here and it’s ridiculous. I guess I’m a rightwing extremist, because here’s your definition:

Rightwing extremism in the United States can be broadly divided into those groups, movements, and adherents that are primarily hate-oriented (based on hatred of particular religious, racial or ethnic groups), and those that are mainly antigovernment, rejecting federal authority in favor of state or local authority, or rejecting government authority entirely. It may include groups and individuals that are dedicated to a single issue, such as opposition to abortion or immigration.

I’m mainly antigovernment, preferring state and local authority to federal authority. And I go on kicks where I get obsessed with partial-birth abortion and illegal immigration — particularly the need to Deport the Criminals First.

Rightwing Extremist!!!

Rightwing extremists are harnessing this historical election as a recruitment tool. Many rightwing extremists are antagonistic toward the new presidential administration and its perceived stance on a range of issues, including immigration and citizenship, the expansion of social programs to minorities, and restrictions on firearms.

I don’t care whether social programs are expanded to “minorities,” but I am concerned about the expansion of social programs. I’m plenty antagonistic towards the new administration. (DID YOU HEAR ME, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY? I AM PLENTY ANTAGONISTIC TOWARDS THE NEW ADMINISTRATION OF BARACK OBAMA!! AND I AM A RIGHTWINGER!!!!)

I’m also far less than thrilled with the administration’s stance on immigration, and (while I don’t own a gun) I am apprehensive about its attitude towards firearms restrictions.

Rightwing extremists were concerned during the 1990s with the perception that illegal immigrants were taking away American jobs through their willingness to work at significantly lower wages.

Me too. Only I’m less concerned with the “perception” and more concerned with the reality.

Are you taking notes, Secret Service agents?

Some might argue that if you read the report in context, the main concern appears to be with people who take matters to the point where they are threatening violence. I don’t care. This is the nose in the tent: the government’s chance to take your legitimate views and turn them into Something Dangerous.

Screw this.

I may begin blogging more about abortion, immigration, federalism — and (if it’s possible) about Obama’s crappy, crappy job on the economy. Just to make a point.

UPDATE: Here is the alleged analogue to the report linked above: a government report on left-wing extremists. A quick read suggests to me that it is far less politically charged than the “rightwing extremists” report — and far less susceptible to the interpretation that the government might be monitoring left-wingers simply for their political views.

Just leave our political views out of it, government officials. We are going to continue to hold our views and express them strongly. Because we’re Americans . . . and we get to do that.

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