Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Party unsure of it's Identity

For the past year or so I have been commenting and posting on the local newspaper online edition, The Daily Journal website.  It has a share of people of all political stripes - conservative, liberal, moderate, libertarian.    By "a share" I mean, among regular commenters and posters, there are a handful of liberal leaning people, a handful of moderate people, and the rest are conservative or libertarian or in the last year, a handful have started to identify themselves as "teaparty people."

At the very beginning the people called themselves "teabagg-ers" (I even heard it on Fox) until they heard about the sex act "teabagg-ing" and what a "teabagg-er" really did.  They then decided to just go by the name of tea party so as not to remind people of the sex act.  Fair enough but they were probably missing out on a unique branding opportunity! 

From what I gather the tea partyers were upset about the way things were going in this country.  They were upset with the incredible debt that George Bush gave us and they were upset with the deficit that Barack Obama was piling on.  They really didn't like the stimulus plan that the Obama administration passed to soften the blow of what the Republican Fed Chairman and the Republican Treasury Secretary labeled as possibly the worst economic downturn since the great depression.  Indeed, they indicated that if wall street was not bailed out and money was not inserted in our economy, it was possible that we could have another great depression.

So, as well as the stimulus plan, the tea partyers were really not happy about the bailout of wall street, or the TARP plan as it was known.   Turns out, the ONLY people in the country that were happy about the TARP plan were the people on wall street who took billions from tax payers and got paid billions in bonuses.  As an aside to this story, it turns out that Wells Fargo will likely pay zero income taxes on enormous profits made last year due to tax breaks because they bought another bank that lost.  On this we can all agree, it was corporate welfare, and should be stopped.  (Except Glenn Beck who for some unknown reason has said that it really doesn't matter if you taxed all the corporations because it wouldn't help our debt out.)
Scary pic of a scary person from Oakcrest, Michele Malkin
Not racist
Not vile
Obama = Hitler, Chicago Rally
 Recent polls have shown tea partiers to be higher educated than average, have more money than average, be male, older, and 95+% white.  (Not that there's anything wrong with that of course!)   They have also shown that people who call themselves tea partiers are split 50-50 in preference as to what is the most important aspect of their movement.  As I have outlined already, half are concerned with fiscal restraint and out of control government spending, the other half think that social issues are the most important thing.  I like to think of it this way.  Half think Ron Paul is the guy to turn this country around, the other half think Sarah Palin is the new messiah.  Remember a couple of months ago she was the keynote speaker at a convention for a party which she now supports, for a cool 100+k.  Not bad work for a half-term governor who was forced to quit her job because as governor she could not accept speaking fees and make the millions that she now makes.  Remember, she and Todd were not wealthy until this year.  But I digress!  I've seen several of the tea partiers say "I just want my country back."  I guess by saying that they mean they want their country back from Barack Obama.  You know, the guy we elected president in this country last.  The guy who got a plurality of 53%  of the vote, much larger than President Bush got, the guy who just happens to be black.  Wait um, did I say "black?"  Well I certainly don't want to insert race into this, do I?  I don't mean to say that many of these fine folks "come to Jesus moment" was January 21st, the day after President Obama was elected.  I JUST WANT MY COUNTRY BACK!
A fellow commenter (name withheld), who has at times either identified with the tea partiers, or was one, but would certainly admit to having a strong interest in the group, has said he has attended several rallies.  He has stated that he has not seen the rampant racism, vileness, and general un-hingedness that some of these pics show, and I certainly believe him.  But I would hope he would admit that it's probably not too hard to find these wing-nuts at many rallies.  I know I didn't have too much trouble. 
While I would agree that there are many honest people protesting for our country to be fiscally responsible, and smart minds can disagree, there are certainly a percentage of nuts with whom's free speech I am offended.  I do however, defend their right to say it.  I wonder what many of these conservatives would say to the honest people who protested the Vietnam War so many years ago.  If I remember, they said "If you don't like America, leave it!"  Could someone today say "Right back at you!"  It was free speech then, and it's the same today.
This finally brings me around to the crux of my argument.  I tried making a comment today on The Daily Journal online about someone else's description of the tea partiers.  I reserve the right to call them by the name that they started themselves, teabagg-ers.  I have called them that in the past on the website.  Today, when I hit the publish my comment button, the Daily Journal came back with a message stating that my comment could not be accepted because it included a word that was troublesome, or something to that effect, anyway.  The word?  Teabagg-er.  What this means is that one of the good commenters complained to The Daily Journal that when people call them that name, it hurts their feelings, the Daily Journal agreed, and banned it's use, along with other profanity.
So, you're allowed to call other commenters names (happens every day), put up vile pics and descriptions of our country and officials, but we the people in this backwoods part of New Jersey are not allowed to call you by your name.  Free speech?  No.  That's censorship and that's wrong.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Rendell: Democratic Party Is Soulless, 'Cowering Behind The Shower Curtains'

Representative Sestak whom I really admire, made a HUGE MISTAKE in entering this senate race. It was almost like, once the rumors were out there, in the end, he had to run. For the democratic party politically, this makes no sense whatsoever. Now we risk losing his seat in the house and more importantly, a really good congressman.

It puts people in the awkward position of rewarding Specter (he has served the state well) and hurting Sestak which no one wants to do. Again, wrong move. Rendell is right though about the dems need to stand together and talk about the successes of Obama, Pelosi, Reid, etal. Keep on pushing the good bills through. Pretty soon people will see that we're actually achieving something.

Ever notice that no matter what, the repubs ALWAYS stick together? And then shove it in your face on teevee? We should try it for a change.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Fair & Balanced = Unhinged

In the 60's it was Johnson against Goldwater running the mushroom cloud ad.  Today, it's FOX News vs our President.  Times have changed, haven't they?

Credit to TPM for the utube video.