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Show ALL Forums  > Politics  > Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?      Home login  
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 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
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Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?Page 1 of 7    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7)
Now the popular media image of the Tea Party movement is one of a typically American private citizen revolt against government power. Now, if we start to examine where the main structure and funding is coming from, we can possibly prove this true or false.

If it's a grassroots outlet, then it's in the finest tradition of American democracy.

If it's not, then people are being deceived to go against their own best interests by hidden hands.

With some research, we can perhaps see the reality of the situation.


Washington, D.C.—FreedomWorks is leveraging its national grassroots infrastructure, a volunteer network over half a million strong, to launch a modern-day “tea party” protest movement our Founding Fathers would be proud of.

http://www.freedomworks.org/publications/freedomworks-launches-nationwide-%E2%80%9Ctea-party%E2%80%9D-tour


OK, we have one lead to follow, let's see where it goes.


2008 - mortgage bailout

In 2008, FreedomWorks was behind the creation of a fake grassroots web site called Angryrenter.com which rallied opposition to "the Obama Housing Bailout"; the site claimed to represent "Renters and responsible homeowners against a government mortgage bailout", and urged people to oppose bailing out mortgage companies. Michael M. Phillips of the Wall Street Journal investigated AngryRenter.com and reported[12]:

"AngryRenter.com looks a bit like a digital ransom note, with irregular fonts, exclamation points and big red arrows -- all emphasizing prudent renters' outrage over a proposed government bailout for irresponsible homeowners. "It seems like America's renters may NEVER be able to afford a home," AngryRenter.com laments. The Web site urges like-minded tenants to let Congress feel their fury by signing an online petition. "We are millions of renters standing up for our rights!" Angry they may be, but the people behind AngryRenter.com are certainly not renters. Though it purports to be a spontaneous uprising, AngryRenter.com is actually a product of an inside-the-Beltway conservative advocacy organization led by****Armey, the former House majority leader, and publishing magnate Steve Forbes, a fellow Republican. It's a fake grass-roots effort -- what politicos call an AstroTurf campaign -- that provides a window into the sleight-of-hand ways of Washington."

August 2009: In August 2009, FreedomWorks supported the American Petroleum Institute's "Energy Citizens" rallies to oppose the Waxman-Markey Climate Bill, held in about 20 states. Other backers included the National Association of Manufacturers, American Conservative Union, Americans for Tax Reform and Council for Citizens Against Government Waste.

Summer 2009: In summer of 2009, FreedomWorks began pursuing an aggressive strategy to create the image of mass public opposition to health care and clean energy reform at Congressmembers' town-hall meetings in their districts. A leaked memo from Bob MacGuffie, a volunteer with the FreedomWorks website "Tea Party Patriots," describes how members should infiltrate town hall meetings and harass and intimidate Democratic members of Congress:

"Spread out in the hall and try to be in the front half. The objective is to put the Rep on the defensive with your questions and follow-up ... You need to rock-the-boat early in the Rep's presentation. Watch for an opportunity to yell out and challenge the Rep's statements early. If he blames Bush for something or offers other excuses -- call him on it, yell back and have someone else follow-up with a shout-out ... The goal is to rattle him ..."


Who's on it's board ?

The Honorable****Armey (Chairman)
Steve Forbes
Matthew B. Kibbe

Who funds it ?


FreedomWorks is primarily funded by individual donations. According to the self-proclaimed progressive media watchdog group Media Matters for America information center, FreedomWorks has also received funding from Verizon and SBC (now AT&T). Other FreedomWorks funders have included Philip Morris and foundations controlled by the conservative Scaife family, according to tax filings and other records. It also receives funding through the sale of insurance policies through which policyholders automatically become members of FreedomWorks.

FreedomWorks is closely tied to its founder, corporate lobbyist and former Republican Congressman****Armey, whose former lobbying firm DLA Piper that he resigned in August 2009, represents Bristol Myers Squibb, among other pharmaceutical companies.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FreedomWorks


So let's look at those people in charge of it now.


In August 2009 Armey was asked to step down from his lobbying position at DLA Piper, which was doing lobbying work for the pharmaceutical industry to pass health care reform legislation. Armey was simultaneously chairing the conservative group FreedomWorks which was actively working to defeat health care reform by encouraging and organizing high conservative turnouts at congressional and senatorial town hall meetings. DLA Piper was concerned about the conflict of interest particularly since their clients were spending millions in advertising and lobbying money to support the passage of health care reform and FreedomWorks was linked to demonstrations at town hall forums where health care reform was being discussed.

Dick Armey was a senior policy adviser for DC-based lobbying firm DLA Piper, whose recent and/or current clients include "pharmaceutical maker Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, ... health care provider Metropolitan Health Networks, and the pharmaceutical firm Medicines Company," all entities that might benefit financially from seeing health care reform defeated.****Armey's concurrent posts with both FreedomWorks and DLA Piper became particularly controversial in light of the $1,290,000 DLA Piper received in 2009 from the pharmaceutical company Medicines Co.In the report cited above, Maddow also cited the example of The American Council of Life Insurers, which paid DLA Piper $100,000 shortly before FreedomWorks lobbied to deregulate life insurance, as one instance of a possible conflict of interest involving Armey and the two organizations.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick_Armey



Major issues Forbes has supported include free trade, health savings accounts, and allowing people to opt out 75% of Social Security payroll taxes into Personal Retirement Accounts (PRAs). He supports traditional Republican Party policies such as downsizing government agencies to balance the budget, tough crime laws and support for the death penalty, and school vouchers, opposition to gun control and most government regulation of the environment, as well as drug legalization and same-sex marriage. This last was despite his father's increasingly flamboyant gay lifestyle before his death.

Steve Forbes was one of the signers of the Statement of Principles of Project for the New American Century (PNAC) on June 3, 1997.

For donations from 1999 to 2006, Forbes was the tenth most important contributor of political funds in America, with 15 donations totaling over $7 million.

Forbes himself is quite wealthy, with an admitted net worth in 1996 of $430 million.Although Fortune publishes the list of the 400 wealthiest men and women in the U.S., Forbes conspicuously exempts himself from such disclosure

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Forbes


I wonder if those Teabaggers actually realize that one of the top people in the main supporter of that group is FOR free trade ?

Or that another is against minimum wage laws.....


The simple truth about the issue is that any minimum-wage rate that is forced onto the market will have only negative effects on the distribution of economic justice. Minimum-wage legislation, by its very nature, benefits some at the expense of the least experienced, least productive, and poorest workers.

Conclusion

Regardless of the intentions of its supporters, the proposed minimum-wage legislation cannot achieve their stated goal of raising the real income of the poor to a more livable level. Indeed, it is an extremely shortsighted policy that can only breed destruction, by eliminating the jobs of those who need work most: the poor, the young, and those suffering from discrimination.

What has been touted as a matter of basic economic justice turns out to be a self-serving issue for many of its supporters. If the minimum wage is increased, labor unions and their influential friends in Congress will make big gains. Unfortunately, everyone else will lose.

In the long run, however, such policies will hurt every-one. As unemployment increases, business becomes more and more unproductive, and the overall quality of life declines, all Americans will suffer.

The Minimum Wage:
Washingtons Perennial Myth

by Matthew B. Kibbe

Cato Institute

http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa106.html



Richard Mellon Scaife (born July 3, 1932) is an American billionaire and newspaper publisher.

Scaife owns and publishes the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. With $1.2 billion, Scaife, a principal heir to the Mellon banking, oil, and aluminum fortune, is No. 283 on the 2005 Forbes 400.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Mellon_Scaife


It's quite interesting to question why these people are looking out for the best interests of the working and middle classes, especially when funded by corporations.

Anyone else see a problem here ?
 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
Msg: 2
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Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/24/2010 8:26:45 PM
On of the other main supporters of this Tea Party movement is the Americans for Prosperity Foundation.



The Americans For Prosperity Foundation (AFPF) is "a nationwide organization of citizen leaders committed to advancing every individual's right to economic freedom and opportunity. AFPF believes reducing the size and scope of government is the best safeguard to ensuring individual productivity and prosperity for all Americans. AFPF educates and engages citizens in support of restraining state and federal government growth, and returning government to its constitutional limits."

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Americans_for_Prosperity


It's chairman ?

David H. Koch

This David Koch :



David Hamilton Koch (pronounced /'ko?k/ "coke", born March 5, 1940) is an American engineer, billionaire and businessman. He is one of the co-owners (with older brother Charles) and an executive vice president of Koch Industries, a conglomerate with major petroleum and natural gas holdings that is the second largest privately held company (after Cargill) in the United States. He lives in New York City and is its second wealthiest resident after Michael Bloomberg.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_H._Koch




Americans for Prosperity
Americans for Prosperity Helping to Organize Tea Party Protests. The Charlotte Observer reported that Americans for Prosperity is "the organization behind this year's taxpayer tea parties," and the Roanoke Times reported "the Tea Party Patriots and Americans for Prosperity organized the Nationwide Tea Party protest day." [Charlotte Observer, 7/22/2009; Roanoke Times, 7/18/2009] The group is listed as a "Health Care Freedom Coalition Partner" on the Tea Party Patriots website. It was established by oil magnate David Koch, and its creation is a result of a split from an earlier Koch-based enterprise, now called FreedomWorks (sound familiar?) AFP was also instrumental in orchestrating the anti-Obama, anti-tax tea party protests in April.

Americans for Prosperity's various fronts and disclosures that point to ever-increasing oil and corporate donations to the group are guided by AFP President Tim Phillips--who, as The Wonk Room notes, "has built a long career of inventing fake grassroots causes." Phillips' resume includes founding an Atlanta-based firm with Abramoff-connected Ralph Reed. The firm, Century Strategies, has a history of mounting "grassroots lobbying drives," and Reed in the past has said (when attempting to help Enron deregulate the electricity industry), "it matters less who has the best arguments and more who gets heard -- and by whom."

http://www.facebook.com/note.php?note_id=142241625210


You'll find them listed right here :

http://teapartypatriots.org/HC.aspx

Along with :

Conservatives for Patients Rights

Conservatives for Patients Rights is a front group organized in 2009 by Richard Scott to fight U.S. president Barack Obama's proposals for health reform. According to the Politico news site, Scott has raised $20 million to fight health care reform.

Rick Scott is a multimillionaire former hospital CEO who, in 2009, emerged as a prominent leader of the opposition to U.S. President Barack Obama's healthcare reform plans. Scott founded a group called Conservatives for Patients' Rights and put $5 million of his own money towards a television advertising campaign aimed at trying to build resistance to any proposal for a government-run health insurance program. Scott's ad campaign is being coordinated by CRC Public Relations, the group that masterminded the "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" attacks against 2004 Democratic presidential candidate John F. Kerry. In the ads, Scott argues that whatever effort Obama likely puts forth to change the health-care system, it will put the country on a slippery slope toward a bureaucratic, British-style national health service.

Maggie Mahar at the Century Foundation's Health Beat blog has written about Scott in her book, Money-Driven Medicine: The Real Reason Healthcare Costs So Much. She reports that Scott previously started a for-profit hospital chain in 1987 that later became the $23 billion Columbia/HCA. He was ousted from this post in 1997 after:

the FBI swooped down on HCA hospitals in five states. Within weeks, three executives were indicted on charges of Medicare fraud, and the board had ousted Scott.

The investigation revealed that the hospital chain had been bilking Medicare while simultaneously handing over kickbacks and perks to physicians who steered patients to its hospitals. ... The company did not fight the charges. In 2000, HCA (which by then had expunged “Columbia” from its name) pleaded guilty to no fewer than 14 felonies. Over the next two years, it would pay a total of $1.7 billion in criminal and civil fines.

In 1997, Scott was forced out as head of the Columbia/HCA healthcare company as the result of a fraud investigation conducted against the company in the 1990s. The firm eventually pleaded guilty to charges that it overbilled state and federal health plans, and paid the government a record $1.7 billion in fines. Scott argues that he was never charged with any crime and that other health-care companies have also received fines for overbilling. However, court records show that the illegal activities during his tenure as chief executive officer were so extensive that he knew or should have known about them. One of the government complaints alleges that he was actively involved in kickback schemes in which doctors were illegally given large incentives for making referrals

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Richard_Scott


And....

Patients First

Patients First is a subsidiary of Americans for Prosperity. It shares the same street address as Americans for Prosperity (1726 M Street NW, Washington, D.C. 20036). Patients First is responsible for sending out the "Hands off My Health Care" bus to rally opposition to President Obama's efforts to reform health care and health insurance in the U.S.

Yet another sponsor [of "Recess Rally"], Americans for Prosperity, and their subsidiary Patients First. Americans for Prosperity's Director, Art Pope, who has the headquarters of the North Carolina Republican party named after him since he's given them so much money. Their Chairman, David Koch, the 19th richest man in the world who runs Koch Industries, which is the largest privately held oil company in the United States.

Americans for Prosperity runs the group Patients First which is busing people across the country to attend these town hall meetings.
This is what these groups do. They're experts at fake grassroots campaigns that promote corporate interests. Americans for Prosperity is the group that ginned up anti-stimulus rallies earlier this year. They also organized what they called the "Hot Air Tour" to campaign against the whole idea of global warming. They were the ones who sent Joe the Plumber around the country to rail against the Employee Free Choice Act, which is pro-labor legislation.

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Patients_First


Quite surprising that these people would also be on the look out for the average guy, don't you think ?

Koch Industries ?

Cato Institute

Charles G. Koch co-founded the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank based in Washington DC, with Edward H. Crane in 1977. Recently, Koch Industries has become an aggressive opponent of climate legislation and a major funder of climate skeptics, including the Cato Institute.

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Koch_Industries


A huge oil company against climate change ? I'm shocked.....not.


Koch Industries is also a major polluter. During the 1990s, its faulty pipelines were responsible for more than 300 oil spills in five states, prompting a landmark penalty of $35 million from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In Minnesota, it was fined an additional $8 million for discharging oil into streams. During the months leading up to the 2000 presidential elections, the company faced even more liability, in the form of a 97-count federal indictment charging it with concealing illegal releases of 91 metric tons of benzene, a known carcinogen, from its refinery in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Republican Ties
If convicted, the company faced fines of up to $352 million, plus possible jail time for company executives. After George W. Bush became president, however, the U.S. Justice Department dropped 88 of the charges. Two days before the trial, John Ashcroft settled for a plea bargain, in which Koch pled guilty to falsifying documents. All major charges were dropped, and Koch and Ashcroft settled the lawsuit for a fraction of that amount.

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Koch_Industries


Pretty easy to see why guys like this are against Big Government, isn't it ?
 Metreau
Joined: 7/30/2004
Msg: 3
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/24/2010 8:45:19 PM
It's been a good while since I've posted here.....

I have to agree MG. It does seem like those who've been backing these "Teabaggers" are unaware of who they're supporting or are knowlingly supporting these entities that are (probably) paying their salaries.

True indeed, it's a sad thing to see that there are people in power that sell their souls to these corporations. It's even more upsetting to see that they can generate an even bigger influence on their constituents.

Looks like the rumors of a New World Order are no longer grapevine talk...
 Wookie50
Joined: 4/9/2006
Msg: 4
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Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 6:24:18 AM
Think progress has a lot of good info on this. Its nothing new.

http://thinkprogress.org/search/search.php?q=tea+astroturf

Its a tangled web of corporate lobbyist influence.


<div class="quote">The West Virginia coal industry has become a virulent opponent of President Barack Obama’s reform agenda, while the state’s political leaders cheered. In June, West Virginia declared coal the state rock. In September, the coal industry sponsored a rock concert and rally to demonize “environmental extremists.” In October, coal companies organized mobs to attack the Environmental Protection Agency’s halting steps to enforce Clean Water Act limits on mountaintop removal mining. In November, the West Virginia Chamber of Commerce told Sen. Robert Byrd (D-WV) and Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WV) to hold health care reform hostage until climate legislation is killed.

http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2009/12/03/byrd-vs-coalocracy/
 flyguy51
Joined: 8/11/2005
Msg: 5
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 8:24:28 AM

there are many Real Americans who are frustrated with this administration

Good to see that you don't play into the Fox News BS that the movement "is not about Republican or Democrat; it's not simply anti-Obama."

See, the last admin orchestrated a very large bailout (that Cheney still defends while lambasting Obama's bailout-- that takes rhetorical skill) and there was no tea party. The last president took the position of "laying low until my replacement gets here" and there was no tea party.

Then comes Obama who orchestrates a bailout to minimize job loss in an extremely similar fashion. Only THEN is there a tea party against bailouts and job losses. Nevermind that the bailouts were to minimize job losses (as ugly an option as that may be). Nevermind that the current admin is enacting various income tax incentives and credits to help the average worker.

Nevermind that many tea partiers voted for a candidate who claimed that "the fundamentals of our economy are strong."
 cotter
Joined: 10/17/2005
Msg: 6
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Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 8:50:30 AM

Why is that the moderators of this site let liberal kumbya singing Obama sycophants refer to a group of concerned citizens as Teabaggers ..how is this any different than calling women on this site W#$res are calling blacks N@$$ers?
Ya ... I wonder why they would let anyone post such a word that is on the news every night? I wonder what else it means ... besides what is posted in Message 6?

Oh wait .. I found something at the same site that provided that other definition. Imagine that?

It means lots of other things. Here ya go ...
Teabagger
A republican who:

1. Protests taxation WITH representation (just because you disagree with it, doesn't mean it doesn't exist)
2. Thinks colonial Americans were prophetic, just because they lived during an earlier time period
3. Falsely claims that the 2009 Teabagging Festival was "bipartisan"
4. Agrees with Joe the Plumber on most major issues
5. Agrees with Glenn Beck, but can't explain exactly what he or they stand for
6. Doesn't understand Constitutional law
7. Doesn't understand what democracy is
8. Blindly uses the words "socialism" and "communism" without knowing what the fuck they mean
9. claims not to be a republican
10. Criticizes democrats, even though their own party has been in office for the past 8 years
11. Thinks the GOP needs to be "more conservative" to get more votes
12. Will listen to every high school dropout before hearing the opinion of ONE intellectual
13. Believes that Fox News is "fair and balanced"
14. Claims to be independent, but certainly doesn't have any liberal beliefs, and listens to guest speakers from the CPAC conference
15. Is a closet anarchist/Paultard
16. Thrives on a mob mentality
17. Prides himself/herself on doing everything he/she has made fun of when Bush was in office
18. Says things like "Where's MY bailout" without understanding how the economy works
19. Like Glenn Beck, has an extremely high word-to-meaning ratio
20. Uses TONS of words from the GOPAC memos of 1990
21. Thinks Russia is still a "threat" to t...
22. Squats on top of a woman's face and lowers his genitals into her mouth during sex ...


Gee ... who would have thought it includes so many different things?

OT ...
Ya ... when you consider how they're really basically cutting their own throats ... it's kind of like the string on the teabag is strangling them ... eh?

Sort of like cutting off their own nose to spite the face. Oh ... for those who don't know what that means ...
Cutting off the nose to spite the face" is an expression used to describe a needlessly self-destructive over-reaction to a problem.


Yuppers ... that describes the teabagger's alright.
 Wookie50
Joined: 4/9/2006
Msg: 7
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Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 10:08:17 AM

I think its great that many Americans have expressed themselves through the Right to vote, kind of hard to spin the results.....


At least not this year. Last year the losers held tons of Fox News sponsored tantrums.
 cotter
Joined: 10/17/2005
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Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 10:19:11 AM

... you people crack me up....everyone knows what the Left means when they refer to Tea Party members as Teabaggers..
I can't speak for everyone in this thread, but as far as I'm concerned, it's the list in Message 10 that I find best describes a "Teabagger".

... its cool though maybe the Mods will give a little more latitude in regards to the words used in describing most of you....
Most of who?

It occurs to me that if someone does not like it, there's a way to handle it. Why not make an effort not to be like that?

Seems to me that if people are offended by being referred to as a "Teabagger" then why do they insist on being called a "Tea Party" member?

BTW ... the "Mods" have no control over the news media references. Also, just remember, if they have to come in here and punish the so-called "liberals" for getting some laughs on the "Teabagger" stuff, then they will also have to reprimand the Neocons for dumping on the Democrats. Last I looked, it's still a two-way street.

Who's fault is it anyways if the Neocons set themselves up for allowing others so much fun? The devil makes people do it ... eh?

OT ...
The Tea Party will settle down ... much like the "birthers". Seems to me that if the "Tea Party" (all those Teabaggers have to have a party ... eh?) could come up with a better way to provide health care for all of those who do not have it .. then maybe they'd be worth listening to?
 Wookie50
Joined: 4/9/2006
Msg: 9
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Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 11:51:47 AM

First of all - I am a PROUD "Teabagger"... Especially now that a "Tea Bagging Redneck" in an old pickup truck just took Ted Kennedy's US Senate seat!


What more could you possibly need to know about a candidate beyond what vehicle he drives?
 davidsauvignon
Joined: 2/6/2008
Msg: 10
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Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 1:58:06 PM

For the life on me I can't understand how you can govern a country when in order to pass legislation you need 60 votes out of 100. I would have thought 51 would do it.

Perhaps some rules have changed that I wasn't aware of but, 50% + 1 is the number of votes needed to pass legislation in the Senate. The 60 vote figure (actually, 3/5ths) is the number of votes needed for cloture...ending a filibuster. A 2/3rds majority is needed to over ride a Presidential veto. At least, that's the way I learned it way back when.





~ds~
 mungojoe
Joined: 11/15/2006
Msg: 11
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 2:25:50 PM
First of all - I am a PROUD "Teabagger"...

Nothing surprising there...

Some folks apparently just don't get that they diss THEMSELEVES when they use that term!

You see, when a "Tea Bagging" happens, there is a Tea BaggER and a Tea BaggEE...

So let's review - if Scott Ford and the Republicans were the Tea BaggERs, then the Democrats and Martha Coakley would be... what? LOL!

Now where have I heard THAT argument before...? Oh yeah...

Translation:

"I'm rubber, you're glue..."

YES, it truly IS a grassroots movement...

And Forbes is just a working stiff who "pulled himself up by the bootstraps"... Only among conservative Americans could a movement bankrolled by America's richest conservatives be considered "grassroots"...
 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
Msg: 12
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Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 3:50:51 PM

Second of all - I know Tim Phillips of Americans for Prosperity. I've known him over 10 years now... YES, it truly IS a grassroots movement... Yes, there are plenty of conspiracy theories and left wing accusations, but let me ask you this - have ANY OF YOU who are making such accusations ever actually BEEN to a Tea Party and actually MET and SPOKEN WITH the people attending???


That's a diversionary point, as we are looking at who is setting up the party. The people that show up most likely have very little idea (or none) of the people behind it - or their real agenda. I wasn't expecting Steve Forbes or Koch to be rolling up in their pick ups.

Interesting guy, Tim....


Phillips and Enron

Century Strategies first big client was Enron--the $60 billion energy company that imploded over-night under shady business operations and fraudulent accounting. From 1997 to 2001 Enron and Century Strategies shared a business relationship.

In 1997, Phillips and Reed were contracted by Enron to mobilize "religious leaders and pro-family groups" to generate support for energy deregulation in Congress and in state assemblies. Phillips and Reed used multiple mediums including advertsing on conservative talk shows, placing op-eds from community leaders in major newspapers, and having major political campaign contributors to press Congress to pass the favourable legislation. It is estimated Enron paid Century Strategies $380,000 for its services.

Phillips and Nefarious Political Attacks
In 2000 Century Strategies worked on the "Bush for President" campaign. According to the Century Strategies, Phillips "spearheaded the direct mail, telemarketing, coalition building and strategic services" for George W. Bush's campaign against John McCain in the 2000 primaries.

During the primaries, McCain's presidential campaign was unraveled by an anonymous public relations operation that spread false rumours about John McCain and his family. The operation tarnished McCain's reputation by sending leaflets, emails, and telephone calls to South Carolina constituents explaining to them how McCain's adopted child from Bangladesh was really an illegitimate child he fathered with a black woman. McCain's team never uncovered who was behind the campaign.

In 2000, Phillips was also hired by Virginia Senator Stephen Martin to manage a direct mail campaign against Eric Cantor in the Republican primary for a Virginia's congressional seat. It was during this campaign that Tim Phillips set up the Faith and Family Alliance. The Faith and Family Alliance then proceeded to conduct an anti-semitic smear campaign on Eric Cantor--the organization sent out thousands of pamphlets and made phone calls which stated that Cantor did not represent "Virginia values," and that his opponent was the "only Christian in the contest." Phillips claims to have no knowledge this smear campaign.

Tim Phillips is also associated with helping to engineer political victory for Senator Saxby Chambliss during the 2002 senatorial election. During this election, a Chambliss television ad aired which claimed incumbent Democrat Senator Max Cleland was soft on national security by showing images of Osama Bin Laden, and then blasting his voting record on domestic security.

In a 1995 speech at a Christian Coalition conference, Tim Phillips, then a strategist for Rep. Goodlatte, told members of the Christian Coalition that were interested in running for school board positions to use "stealth tactics to find the most 'hard-core' people aligned to conservative values." Phillips recommended inventing a phony polling firm. This false surveying group would then phone residents and ask loaded questions about abortion, homosexuality, and school prayer. Those respondents that gave the most desired responses would be reminded to vote on election day.

Phillips and Global Warming
Phillips has lobbied hard against anthropogenic global warming. AFP has conducted the "Hot Air Tour"--a national tour championing the voice against global warming hysteria. Likewise, the AFP has fought against the Waxman-Markey Bill and cap-and-trade legislation. AFP runs a website, No Cl!mate Tax which allows American citizens to send a message to federal and state lawmakers urging them to sign the No Climate Tax Pledge.

The site declares that cap-and-trade is the largest tax increase in history. Citizens can also calculate how much "global warming alarmism and cap-and-trade legislation" will cost their family by entering what state they live in, how much they pay for a gallon of gas, their monthly electric bill, and their monthly natural gas bill.

Americans For Prosperity also led the charge to oust Van Jones, the Special Advisor for Green Jobs at the White House, from his position. In an article published on FOX News, Phil Kerpen, the director of policy for Americans for Prosperity outlines how he initiated the Van Jones ouster--the crux of Kerpen's article is that Van Jones is a radical communist, whose "Green Collar Economy" is all part of an attempt to achieve radical ends.

Phillips and the Northern Mariana Islands
In 1998 Jack Abramoff hired Century Strategies to pressure Congress to vote against legislation that would have made the U.S. commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands subject to U.S. federal wage and worker safety laws. The legislation came as a response to a federal report which found that Chinese women in the Northern Mariana Islands were subjected to forced abortions, as well as forced prostitution in the local sex-tourism industry.

However, in the mail-out campaign Phillips conducted to oppose the legislation, he stated that Chinese workers "are exposed to the teachings of Jesus Christ, [and many] convert to the Christian faith and return to China with Bibles in hand."


Phillips and Century Strategies

In 1997, Tim Phillips joined forces with Ralph Reed to found the public relations firm, Century Strategies, as well as the marketing firm, Millennium Marketing.

Century Strategies offers business consulting, political and campaign consulting, and direct mail services. The company chooses not to release its list of clients. However, according to National Journal, Century Strategies has "raked in millions of dollars by mounting grassroots lobbying drives and other campaigns -- as well as doing some inside-the-Beltway advocacy -- for two dozen or so Fortune 100 companies and lesser-known enterprises."

In 2005 and 2006, Ralph Reed and Century Strategies were embroiled in a federal lobbying scandal. In 2000 Century Strategies was contracted by lobbyist Jack Abramoff to generate anti-lottery grassroots support to in order to help promote and maintain the business interests of several of Abramoff's clients.

Century Strategies was hired by Abramoff to organize a coalition to block Native American tribes in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Texas from creating casinos--the proposed casinos would drive gamblers away from the casinos Abramoff's clients owned. Reed, who has publicly called gambling a "cancer on the American politic," did not want to have any direct connection with this matter, so, he had his fees laundered through two companies. According to the Washington Post, Century Strategies was paid as much as $4 million for its work opposing several tribal casinos in southern states from 2001 to 2003

Century Strategies also provided services for another gambling client of Abramoff's, e-Lottery--an internet gambling company, . Century Strategies, whose key figures are prominent conservatives, was dispatched to convince conservative members of congress, as well as religious groups that the Internet Gambling Prohibition Act was going was not going to prevent gambling, but, in fact, was actually going to expand legalized gambling. American Marketing and Publishing, Inc., led a massive mail-out campaign in key voting constituencies. American Marketing is a company founded by Robert Randolph, the president of Century Strategies marketing subsidiary, Millennium Marketing.

Century Strategies fees for this project were laundered through the Faith and Family Alliance. The Faith and Family Alliance is a political advocacy group that was founded by Tim Phillips. The money was laundered in three steps: cheques for the e-Lottery project were written out to the Americans for Tax Reform foundation; Americans for Tax Reform would then send a cheque to the Faith and Family Alliance; finally, the identical amount would be transferred from the Faith and Family Alliance to Century Strategies. Robin Vanderwall, the director of the Faith and Family Alliance has stated he "was operating a shell."

In 2006, Jack Abramoff was convicted of fraud, tax evasion, and conspiracy to bribe public officials. Reed has stated that he had no direct knowledge of Abramoff's clients or their interests, and that Century Strategies' "efforts were designed to stop casino gambling, pure and simple."

http://www.desmogblog.com/tim-phillips




Last night, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow called Phillips out for using deceptive tactics and fear in his campaigns, noting in particular his role in creating the ads which portrayed former Sen. Max Cleland (D-GA) — a triple amputee and Vietnam war veteran — as a terrorist sympathizer. Phillips stood by every single example of his work for his Republican and corporate clients, adding that he indeed does believe Cleland didn’t have the “courage to lead on the war on terror.”

Maddow extracted confessions from Phillips that he had in fact worked for a Jack Abramoff client to pressure members of Congress to vote against legislation that would have made the U.S. commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands — where Chinese workers were forced into prostitution and mandatory abortions — subject to federal wage and worker safety laws. Even given the deplorable conditions at the sweatshops, Phillips was unrepentant. “I don’t have an issue with it,” said Phillips, adding, “I’m not going to disown it.”

Phillips defended his methods with a curious argument. He disregarded the morals of his tactics, then explained that no matter what his organization says, who funds them, and how they operate, he and his corporate backers have every right to be “involved in the process.” Maddow conceded that point, but asserted that AFP’s fear-mongering and lying is simply bad for the country:

MADDOW: And I have to tell you, because we’re making this about you and me, is that I personally think that you and the folks who do what you do are a parasite who gets fat on Americans’ fears.

http://thinkprogress.org/2009/10/16/afp-corporate-parasites/


Pretty nice record of "success", no moral regrets over doing any of those things, and it's surprising he can still sleep at night. Saying a triple amputee Vietnam War vet doesn't have the courage to lead ? That smear campaign against McCain ?

The one thing he seems to be good at is praying on people's ignorance and fear to advance agendas of the rich and powerful over the working and middle classes.

Seems he's got all he needs to succeed with the Tea Party crowd.
 mungojoe
Joined: 11/15/2006
Msg: 13
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 4:30:40 PM

Phillips defended his methods with a curious argument. He disregarded the morals of his tactics, then explained that no matter what his organization says, who funds them, and how they operate, he and his corporate backers have every right to be “involved in the process.”

What a 'stand-up' kind of guy...!

And obviously a 'good' Christian conservative... The Faith and Family Alliance... After all, we all know that God wants energy deregulation... it's right there in the "Gospels of Exxon"...

And the attacks on Cantor and McCain's adopted child... I'm sure I heard somewhere that God hates Jews and brown-skinned babies... Would that be the "Gospels of Adolph"... ?

And the fake polling firm idea... What could be more Christian conservative... Unfortunately, I forget which of the commandments exhort people to "Maketh shit up, lieth if necessary, and ye shall inherit a Christian America"... but I'm sure it's there somewhere...

Second of all - I know Tim Phillips of Americans for Prosperity. I've known him over 10 years now...

Once again... no big surprises there...
 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
Msg: 14
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History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 5:30:41 PM
It kind of reminds me of Pickett's Charge, right into the guns aimed at their best self-interests. If you look at the Red States, the percentage of people living in poverty is rather high, as are the number of uninsured.

Look at these figures from that well known socialist Godless Commie group that proudly call themselves the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.


State, % People Below Poverty Level
1. Mississippi 21%
2. District of Columbia 17%
3. Louisiana 17%
4. New Mexico 17%
5. Arkansas 17%
5. West Virginia 17%
7. Kentucky 17%
7. Oklahoma 15%
9. Texas 15%
10. Alabama 15%
U.S. Census Bureau, Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2008

Top Ten States with Highest Percentage of Children under 18 Living in Poverty
Mississippi 29.4 %
Louisiana 26.9 %
District of Columbia 25.7 %
Arkansas 25.3 %
New Mexico 25.2 %
Alabama 23.6 %
Kentucky 23.6 %
West Virginia 23.4 %
Texas 23.1 %
Tennessee 22.5 %
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, 2008 American Community Survey, August 2009

Top Ten States with the Highest Percentage of Adults 65 or Older Living in Poverty
District of Columbia 15.6 %
Mississippi 15.6 %
Louisiana 14 %
Kentucky 13.4 %
New Mexico 13.2 %
Tennessee 12.9 %
Georgia 12.7 %
Arkansas 12.6 %
Alabama 12.6 %
Texas 12.3 %
U.S. Census Bureau, 2006 American Community Survey 2008

http://www.usccb.org/cchd/povertyusa/povfact4.shtml



The Census Bureau sought to find that out, for the first time, in a survey taken last year and released in September. Over all, it found that 9.9 percent of children lack any health insurance, half the rate for adults under 65.

But there was widespread variation in coverage. Children in Texas, the state with the least health insurance, are more than eight times as likely not to have it than children in Massachusetts, the state with the broadest coverage.

Those who lack health insurance now are far more likely to live in states that usually vote Republican — the states whose senators and representatives are least likely to support a law to extend coverage.

There are a number of reasons for a greater amount of health insurance in blue states. Some of those states have relatively generous child insurance programs, most notably Massachusetts, which has nine of the 10 Congressional districts with the most health insurance. (The 10th is in Hawaii, another blue state.) Some Democratic states have also been more generous in setting Medicaid coverage standards, thus providing more coverage for people with low-paying jobs that do not provide insurance.

Of the 10 Congressional districts with the least health insurance, seven are in Texas, two in California and one in Florida. Nine of those districts are largely black or Hispanic, and are represented by Democrats who faced little if any Republican opposition in the last election.

While heavily Democratic districts often have less insurance, the red states tend to have less insurance than other states even without including those districts. Of the 150 Congressional districts with the most health insurance, only three are in red states — one each in Alabama, Tennessee and Kansas. Another 25 are in purple states, with the rest in states that consistently vote Democratic.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/10/business/economy/10charts.html


Why is it that those seeking to bring much needed relief to people that need it the most are the one's vilified by those very same people - under the hidden umbrella that is sponsored by those with the most resources and wealth ?

Why is it that your "liberal media" seems to sit by and let it occur, without kicking over the rock and letting the bright light of day expose the billionaires and corporations that organize and pay the bills ?

Why is it that someone like Nixon could propose a health plan far more "socialist" than Obama's , without complaint from the right ?

Why is it that even Bush and the Republican party could enact a socialist Medicare overhaul, or even bail out corporations without protest from these same groups ?

Some rather interesting questions, that all serve to highlight the current game of three card monte being played on those that think the winning card is still on the table - and not in the dealer's pocket.....
 Ready4SomethingFun
Joined: 3/17/2008
Msg: 15
view profile
History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 6:14:14 PM
Here's a few questions in return---

Why is it that someone who isn't even a citizen of our country cares so much about American politics? Are Canada's politics really that boring? How would you like it if American conservatives starting sticking their noses in your political system (not that it would ever happen, we have lives to live) and trying to influence it?

I am sincere in asking, I have asked before and all I ever get in response is something such as "this is a Canadian website and if you don't like it blah blah blah......"
I understand it is a Candian website, but the majority on here are not Canadian and most threads on Canadian politics get one, maybe two responses and die quickly. Is that the reason?
I am truly interested in why some Canadians are so hell bent on the US becoming more like them. The majority of Americans truly don't want it.
 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
Msg: 16
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History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 6:36:50 PM

Why is it that someone who isn't even a citizen of our country cares so much about American politics?


I've been following it since 1968, and the RFK campaign. It's interesting, and it does (indirectly) affect my country and the rest of the world.



Are Canada's politics really that boring?


Compared to yours ? Kind of...

At least in the last couple of decades. You have someone going rogue, we have someone going prorogue. (Canadians will get that one.)



How would you like it if American conservatives starting sticking their noses in your political system (not that it would ever happen, we have lives to live) and trying to influence it?


It certainly has happened.

http://dawn.thot.net/harperstiestousa/

Our current Prime Minister , a Conservative, was a member of just such a "grassroots" movement, the NCC. In fact, he actually went before the Supreme Court here to argue that such groups be allowed to remain secret.


The National Citizens Coalition (NCC) was founded in 1967 by Colin M. Brown (1914-1987), initially to oppose public health care.
Harper's speech as NCC President to the Council for National Policy, a right-wing American political organization, in Montreal in June 1997 — is often cited as a testament of his true political colours.

http://www.harperindex.ca/ViewArticle.cfm?Ref=0010





The National Citizens Coalition is a Canadian conservative lobby group, founded by Colin M. Brown in 1967, originally founded in opposition to the concept of a national healthcare system. It supports privatization, tax cuts, and government spending cuts and opposes laws that limit spending by non-party organizations during election campaigns. It has been heavily involved in advertising, political campaigns and legal challenges in support of its goals of "more freedom with less government."

The organization has fought to keep information about itself confidential, and opposed amendments to the Canada Elections Act that would have required third-party organizations like the NCC to publish the names of all contributors donating more than $250.

During its almost four decades of existence, the NCC has campaigned against:

* the Canada Health Act,
* the Canadian Wheat Board,
* the general strike organized by the Canadian Labour Congress against wage and price controls imposed the Liberal government of Pierre Trudeau in 1975
* the admittance of Vietnamese refugees ("boat people") to Canada in 1979-1980
* closed-shop unions
* the so-called "gold-plated" pension plan for Members of Parliament
* real or perceived government waste in general

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Citizens_Coalition



The Liberal Party of Canada's government introduced Bill C-2 which became the new Canada Elections Act in 2002. Bill C-2 limited third party election advertising maximum spending to $150,000 nationwide, of which a maximum of $3,000 can be spent on a given electoral district.

Stephen Harper, then president of the National Citizens Coalition (he became Prime Minister in 2006), launched a constitutional challenge in June 2000 to Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta in Edmonton. The court held that section 350 and section 351 of the Canada Elections Act is unconstitutional. The Alberta Court of Appeal, in a 2-1 decision, ruled on December 16, 2002 that all provisions on third party activities, except for section 358, violates the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
[edit] Ruling

The majority was written by Justice Bastarache with Justice Iacobucci, Arbour, LeBel, Deschamps and Fish concurring.

The court found that, though the spending limits infringe upon section 2b of the Charter, the law is reasonable and is justified in light of section 1. The majority concluded that the objective of the spending limits is electoral fairness. The law has an effect in creating "a level playing field for those who wish to engage in the electoral discourse, enabling voters to be better informed". In addition, section 3 of the Charter is not infringed because the right of meaningful participation in electoral process includes the right to participate in an informed manner. Without spending limits, individuals or groups can dominate the discussion and prevent opposing views from being heard.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harper_v._Canada_%28Attorney_General%29


"$150,000 nationwide, of which a maximum of $3,000 can be spent on a given electoral district."

Thank God for that....

Does this sound familiar ?

American right wing religious groups have tried to intervene in our domestic policies fighting same sex marriage and abortion, and American conservatives have certainly tried to paint Canada's medicare system as being seriously flawed - even when the majority of Canadians agree with the system and are happy with it.
 Ready4SomethingFun
Joined: 3/17/2008
Msg: 17
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History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 6:57:20 PM
I really do appreciate the non-condesecending answer. That's really all I've ever asked for.

I personally think Americans should keep their noses out of your domestic policies and vise versa, unless it has a direct influence on either one's security.

I don't really think painting your healthcare system as being flawed is intervening in any way (anymore than your painting of the "teabag" movement is going to change the minds of those that approve of what they stand for and do), because I've heard enough backlash against it from your own citizens (there have been several threads in the off topic forums here where many Canadian citizens have voiced their discontent).

I honestly don't think your healthcare system would work here, and the risks to test that theory are too great for many ( a majority even) of the people living here. I think the difference in population is one problem, and the fact that even those who would benefit from it would never give up the money from their paychecks needed to support it. Many Americans are all for more socialism until they learn there is a ever increasing price-tag that comes with it.
 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
Msg: 18
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History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 7:10:47 PM
I also agree that Americans will probably never want or support a "Canadian style" healthcare program, and that has far more to do with the American cultural and historical paradigm, and those cultural filters I keep referring to. I've said the same in many posts here, and maintained the same position when arguing in the "gun control" threads.

If you've noticed, I've always carefully maintained an ability to speak as a "virtual American" when posting in those type of threads. I don't reference our political system, or our history, in support of anything there. That's the only way to debate such topics, exactly because those cultural filters over our eyes give us a totally different perspective over how we see things.

On the other hand, I do think the spirit of America, and democracy itself, is to question those that seek to control us. Being a billionaire doesn't mean you can't look out for the average man, but one has to look at which type of billionaire is involved.

If such groups, in your country or mine, are being promoted and supported by corporations and billionaires, then it's certainly a good thing to look into. Who are these people, and what are their agendas, and why are they interested in forming such groups ?

Cui bono - who gains ?

Not looking into such things is neglecting the very basic need of free men and women in democratic societies to be informed of what's going on - and that's a universal problem that threatens democracy anywhere it is to be found.
 cotter
Joined: 10/17/2005
Msg: 19
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History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 9:12:32 PM

Some folks apparently just don't get that they diss THEMSELEVES when they use that term!

You see, when a "Tea Bagging" happens, there is a Tea BaggER and a Tea BaggEE...
Ya ... we get that.

So let's review - if Scott Ford and the Republicans were the Tea BaggERs, then the Democrats and Martha Coakley would be... what? LOL!
The Democrats?

Let me understand this ... you're saying that the Republicans are dissing themselves by using that term to describe themselves? Um DUH!!!

But hey ... if they're proud of what is going on ... then why would we deprive them of being so proud? If they're proud of the people who are organizing the "Tea Bag Party" putting the screws to them ... who's to stop them?

If I understand the connotation appropriately, the Republicans seem to feel they are "teabagging" the Democrats (the Republican Tea BaggERs are lowering themselves over the Democrat Tea BaggEEs ... and having them suck their nads). That's what the inference there is ... right?

But what they (the republicans) don't get is that the folks organizing all the actual "teabagging" parties are the ones actually "teabagging" the Republicans ... ie putting the screws to the Republicans.

If you look at the Red States, the percentage of people living in poverty is rather high, as are the number of uninsured.
Do ya think too that perhaps they are so very naïve ...
"Lacking worldly experience and understanding, especially: 1) simple and guileless; artless; 2) Unsuspecting or credulous; howing or characterized by a lack of sophistication and critical judgment."
... that they really don't get it that those people are actually putting the screws to them?

Ya ... that's what it looks like, that's what it walks like ... that's what it is!!!

Why is it that someone who isn't even a citizen of our country cares so much about American politics?
How would you like it if American conservatives starting sticking their noses in your political system (not that it would ever happen, we have lives to live) and trying to influence it?

I am sincere in asking, I have asked before and all I ever get in response is something such as "this is a Canadian website and if you don't like it blah blah blah......"
Keep in mind that we have numerous American Citizens working and living in Canada. They are "American" voters and have every right to be interested in "American politics".

EDIT to the post below:
I didn't see it that way at all. Personally I thought it just had to do with the Boston Tea Party, and not anything to do with any sort of sexual denigration or.... sexual power play or anything like that.
Um no.

He was referring to the previously posted definition of what "teabagging" is. From Message 6 ...
Teabagger-2) a man that squats on top of a womens face and lowers his genitals into her mouth during sex, known as "teabagging"
That was the inference in the post that I quoted (Message 18) ... that the Republicans did that to the Democrats.
 Ready4SomethingFun
Joined: 3/17/2008
Msg: 20
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History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 9:31:55 PM
MG--

Yes, I have noticed your ability to speak as a virtual American, and quite possibly the reason I questioned you in the first place. It isn't often that one from another country knows more about our politics than the majority of our citizens, and that could possibly be the blame of our rather lackluster education system (yet another prime example of why many view what the government here touches rather suspiciously) , or your acknowledged interest in the subject.

I think possibly the same cultural filters you speak of cause some of us to view the questions you raise as a condemnation of our way of life. There is a distinct possibility we as a nation don't question what happens around us nearly enough, but it raises suspicions when someone from elsewhere does so (that questioning of those who seek to control us you mentioned). Why that is, I cannot answer, and I apologise for my quickness in jumping down your throat because it truly does seem you are only trying to open eyes that often may seem blind to someone outside looking in, and many times are. I think part of the problem with our politics in general is there is way too much of that and neither side is willing to give in. At least we try to give in as little as possible.

Politics in America is kind of like football, we usually only gain a few yards at time, and it takes many plays to get a touchdown. My "team" is playing defense right now and looking for every yard we can get, and I suppose I am willing to overlook a few shady creatures lurking in the background, just as I feel many were doing so when they elected Obama. And Obama voters felt the same about those voting for Bush before that. It is a vicious circle. Weather it is right or wrong, I don't know. I only know it seems to be a vote for what each of us perceives as the lesser of two evils, never what is best.

As I said, I do appreciate your honest response to my rather barbed questions in that previous post. And I apologise if I came off rudely but I got put off by the title of the thread. I have always respected your engaging and insightful way of looking at things. Even when our opinions are on opposite spectrums.
 Montreal_Guy
Joined: 3/8/2004
Msg: 21
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History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/25/2010 11:51:36 PM
Well, I appreciate your honesty as well. I think that you can learn far more from those you disagree with than you ever will from those that agree with you - if you take the time to listen.

I think one of the reasons that many Americans get turned off of politics is probably due to the nature of the beast in the last two decades. If you go back to your early history, anyone that looks at your early presidential campaigns will certainly realize that some of those were mind blowing in their dirt, and politics is what it is.


Things got ugly fast. Jefferson's camp accused President Adams of having a "hideous hermaphroditical character, which has neither the force and firmness of a man, nor the gentleness and sensibility of a woman."

In return, Adams' men called Vice President Jefferson "a mean-spirited, low-lived fellow, the son of a half-breed Indian squaw, sired by a Virginia mulatto father."

http://www.cnn.com/2008/LIVING/wayoflife/08/22/mf.campaign.slurs.slogans/index.html


Rush Limbaugh with a musket, anyone ?

That said, this latest period in American history has been magnified and amplified to a point where all you here is the screaming. Clinton was a lightening rod for it, and Bush and Obama were/are as well.

Now, politics here is quite a different matter. Many of you Americans worry about your country, and your future, and that's normal. I come from a country where it was very nearly split up, democratically, twice in my lifetime. The province I live in (Quebec) was quite close to separating into being it's own new country. My ex-wife was a separatist, and I was a devout federalist.

The funny thing ?

That caused us zero problems as a couple. We respected each others rights to different opinions, and our freedom to democratically differ as equals. We, above all, agreed that this should be done in a non-violent and democratic way no matter which way it went.

That caused us zero problems as a people, as well. We accepted that democracy would decide the outcome, and not violence.

You see in my country, in 1970, I actually had the experience of armed Canadian troops patrolling my neighborhood. We had had our own 9/11, when something called the October Crisis occurred. FLQ terrorists had kidnapped a British diplomat and a Quebec government minister. In that same movement, earlier, that same group had planted bombs. One of them went off not far from where I lived at the time.

This time, there was no violence, thank God. There wasn't that much screaming either. There were a lot of really passionate and lengthy discussions over it by some giants in Canadian political history. On the other hand, Canadian Constitutional reform discussions are quite a good cure for insomnia. Hey, your talking about a country that took over one hundred years to repatriate it's own Constitution back from Britain. We are nothing, if not patient. You think MY posts are long ?


An Englishman, a Canadian and an American were captured by terrorists.

The terrorist leader said: "Before we shoot you, you will be allowed last words. Please let me know what you wish to talk about."

The Englishman replied: "I wish to speak of loyalty and service to the crown."

The Canadian replied: "Since you are involved in a question of national purpose, national identity, and secession, I wish to talk about the history of constitutional process in Canada, special status, distinct society and uniqueness within diversity."

The American replied: "Just shoot me before the Canadian starts talking."


So I look at your great country, it's resources, and it's incredibly rich history- and then I see the type of political debate there that involves so much virulent speech, name calling, and corruption of that same great history. You guys have got so much going for you, it's stunning. If I were to sit back and listen to what's going on with my eyes closed to everything, I'd have to say you must live in some Banana Republic run by people who seem to be madmen, sons of Satan, or perhaps both.
 cotter
Joined: 10/17/2005
Msg: 22
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History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/26/2010 7:28:06 AM

Seriously if any conservatives referred to any group of Liberals as Teabaggers or any other derogatory term there would be outrage and the poster would be banned from posting....
WHAT?!?! LMFAO ... I've only been on this site since March 2005 and all I've ever seen from the Conservatives is snotty, derogatory remarks and terms when describing Democrats. The Moderators don't step in ... and are not required to do anything about it unless it becomes a personal attack. Other than that ... the Conservatives have never held back.

... who have become affiliated with the Tea Party movement to be referred to as Teabaggers...Many who are involved are merely concerned citizens.....
Who proudly refer to themselves as "Teabaggers" ... see Message 18. They are the ones who refer to themselves as such. They appear to be proud of what they are doing. They run from town hall meeting to town hall meeting being disruptive ... toting guns and inflammatory degrading signs and posters ... with tea bags dangling from clothes and hats.

I guess I don't understand what the problem here is.

How would all of those Obama zealots who support Obama unquestionably as unthinking sycophantic neophytes?
Well, see there ... that is a good example of the a Conservative referring to Obama zealots as an unthinking "servile person who, acting in his or her own self-interest, attempts to win favor by flattering one or more influential persons" (sycophant) who is "a beginner or novice member of an organization" (neophyte).

So essentially what we have is a proclaimed Conservative referring to Obama zealots as "novice suck ups"? There's nothing flattering about that, but if that's what a person thinks of people who are enthusiastic supporters of Obama ... it's their opinion and they are entitled to it no matter how demeaning it is.

It's apparent (as in Message 18) ...
I am a PROUD "Teabagger" ...
... that the "Teabaggers" (Conservatives proud of being a part of the "Tea Bag Party") appear to be getting a kick out of the demeaning disgusting insinuation of "Teabagging" the Democrats ...
You see, when a "Tea Bagging" happens, there is a Tea BaggER and a Tea BaggEE...
So if someone is upset about being labeled as a "Teabagger" ... perhaps they need to take it up with their fellow "proud-to-be-a-"Teabagger" Conservatives.

Personally, I think the "Teabaggers" are the ones who are getting the shaft from those who are organizing the movement. Aside from the actual organizers, most of the people who are actually carrying the signs will be the ones hurt most by the lack of health care, the lack of insurance.

Millionaires seldom go to the poor house if they need to go to the hospital ... even if they don't have insurance. Poor people who are barely getting by on two (minimum wage) salaries are the ones who will be left with living on the street if they need to go to the hospital.

How many millionaires do you know who are out there helping to feed the homeless? How many millionaire company owners do you know (who sent their business overseas) are out there building shelters for the people they put out of work?

Are the millionaires who are funding the "Tea Party" movement (basically trying to deprive the poor of health care and health benefits) also funding any kind of help for the poor?

No?

Then they are the ones putting the shaft to the very people they encourage to carry the signs, the guns and throw tea bags around.
 Ready4SomethingFun
Joined: 3/17/2008
Msg: 23
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History
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/26/2010 9:13:22 AM

Hence the need for opening one's mind to education. Some of us actually are interested in other parts of the world instead of remaining ignorant. Canada is only one health system out of many systems throughout the world, yet you don't like suggestions because they're 'foreigners' and you don't wish to learn something from them.
That's pathetic!


Opening one's mind and becoming educated has nothing to do with staying out of something that is not their business. But you wouldn't understand that one bit. I have no problem with "suggestions" but I do have problems with those from other countries trying to manipulate a system that they are unfamiliar with because they think their way is better. Isn't that one of your big problems with Bush was that he tried to force the American way of thinking on "foreigners"? But it's quite okay for the reverse to happen, weather the majority agree or not, because you enlightened libs think it should be that way.

Just as pathetic.
 mungojoe
Joined: 11/15/2006
Msg: 24
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/26/2010 12:27:16 PM
How would you like it if American conservatives starting sticking their noses in your political system (not that it would ever happen, we have lives to live) and trying to influence it?

Here is where that 'being informed' thingy comes into it... Allow me to educate you a bit with some notable examples...

The U.S. gov't has been sticking thier nose into Canadian politics for as long as there has been a U.S. gov't...

It first started right after the Revolution when the Founding Fathers rather unilaterally decided that Canada wanted to be as free of Britain as they did... without asking the people they were "freeing"... and tried to invade... they found out the hard way that thier sentiments weren't shared...

They tried again about 30 years later... same result...

About another 50 years later the U.S. gov't turned a blind eye to attempts by private armies to invade Canada from the U.S... many U.S. politicians supported them, including the then sitting President...

On a more recent note... A previous P.M. of Canada, one of its most popular, was banned from entering the U.S. by order of the President (Nixon)... seems Nixon thought he was a communist... and that's not even mentioning how vocal the U.S. gov't got when Canada refused to participate in Vietnam... did the same over Iraq... I'm sure you remember how loud and obnoxious they got over that...

When the Canadian gov't made the decision to be the first nuclear armed country in the world to eliminate nuclear weapons from its territory the U.S. gov't went ape-shit and tried to force them to stop...

When the Canadian gov't banned overflights of nuclear armed aircraft, the U.S. gov't went ape-shit, chose to ignore Canadian sovereignty and fly nuclear armed bombers over Canada's capital city... just to prove they could if they wanted to...

When the Canadian gov't enacted cultural content rules for Canadian media... the U.S. had a fit because U.S. companies didn't want it (cost them more money to operate in Canada)... Apparently there is a sense that U.S. companies should be free to operate in Canada under U.S. rules rather than Canadian rules...

Every time the issue of marijuana decriminalization comes up in Canada... the U.S. gov't has a snit fit and does everything it can to force the Canadian gov't to 'toe' the U.S. line...

The U.S. gov't regularly gets its shorts in a knot over the stumpage fees Canada charges CANADIAN companies for CANADIAN trees... and then set about doing everything they can to force the Canadian gov't to charge fees that U.S. companies like... did the same with steel... and grain... and just about every other CANADIAN resource that U.S. companies would like to make money off of...

There seems to be a sense among U.S. politicians that they have a right to dictate Canadian immigration policy... You remember that don't you... seems that the financial interests of U.S. companies (who would lose a lot of money if the borders were closed up too tightly) is more important than Canadian sovereignty...

Virtually every country in the world has recognized Canadian sovereignty over the Canadian High Arctic... except the U.S.... who regularly violates Canadian territorial waters just to show they can...

And we won't even get into the long, sordid history of U.S. extra-territorial law enforcement... attempts to enforce U.S. law on Canadian soil...

And the interesting thing is... the worst offenders in these issues are almost always American conservatives (who aren't nearly as isolationist as they pretend to be... it's more of a one-way street... more like the U.S. does what it wants, where it wants, to whom it wants but everyone else stays out of U.S. concerns)...

So, yeah... Canadians have plenty of reason to be concerned about what goes on in U.S. politics... largely because it almostly always leads to efforts in one form or another to establish "governance without representation", in short, "you do what we want and we'll do what we want"... and it's almost always at its worst when the U.S. conservatives are calling the shots... and that's why you tend to see Canadians having a lot of negative things to say about it when the 'tide' in the U.S. turns to the right and try to be encouraging when it turns to the left... And the currnet crop of far-right "Teabaggers" are among the most dangerous American conservatives to come down the pike in that regard...
 Super Ryan
Joined: 9/15/2007
Msg: 25
Teabagger's - a grassroots movement or just more astroturf ?
Posted: 1/26/2010 12:38:28 PM

Opening one's mind and becoming educated has nothing to do with staying out of something that is not their business.

I am so tired of Americans complaining about Canadian opinions, on a Canadian site.
You have the option of going to American sites, where only American opinions are allowed. But POF is based in Canada and welcomes the thoughts and ideas from anyone in the world with internet access.
I have also noticed that right wing Canadians (yes, they do exist) never get complaints about sticking their nose in American business.

But let's be honest, what happens in America does effect Canada. And it is a symbiotic relationship. Canada is America's largest trading partner, and America is Canada's largest trading partner. We also share security and have treaties for our shared resources.
And although it may be hard to see, American decisions on healthcare do effect Canada and Canadians. One of the reasons Canada has a doctors shortage is because of the rediculous wages a doctor can earn in America. Also several Americans do run to Canada to abuse our healthcare system because they can't afford care in America.
And the whole drug re-importation idea would have a major negative effect to the Canadian system, thank god no politician has been able to approve re-importation.


but I do have problems with those from other countries trying to manipulate a system

You should have a problem with anybody manipulating the system.
But making some comments on the POF forums is not manipulation, it's just sharing of ideas, you know free speech.
With the recent Supreme Court ruling, expect lots of political manipulation from all sorts of "corporations" that have no loyalty to any country.
Heck, tommorrow I can start up a corporation in Canada for about $300, open up an American office for about $20 a year (all I need is a P.O. box) and I can spend as much money as I like trying to manipulate the American political process. And unlike an actual human being, I can make slanderous comments, and if anyone makes a stink, I just shut down the corporation and start up a new one making the same illegal sladerous comments.


a system that they are unfamiliar

It seems like the person you are complaining about has far greater knowledge about the American system than the majority of Americans.

Isn't that one of your big problems with Bush was that he tried to force the American way of thinking on "foreigners"?

I think the keyword is "force".
Canadians giving an opinion of America, on a Canadian website, is in no way force.
Sending an army to a foreign country to topple the government, while killing women and children, is force.

Just as pathetic.

What you wrote above it was deffinitly pathetic.
It screams of "I don't like to lose, so I'm taking my ball and going home".
If you want to discuss politics, expect there to be people with different views then your own, and if you wish to discuss politics on a Canadian site, expect some of those views to come from a Canadian.

Last semester I took a course called "Canadian Business and Government Relations". My professor in the course was American (double Phd in economics and poilitical science).
Should I ignore everything he taught me, because he is American giving views on Canada? Heck, no! He is smart as can be with a vast knowledge of Canada. I found his views to be very enlightning and I looked forward to attending his class (can't say the same thing for Managerial Accounting).

Why is it that someone who isn't even a citizen of our country cares so much about American politics?

Again, what happens in America usually has an effect in Canada.
But there is another reason, American politics is damm entertaining. We don't have a "you're either with us or against us" mentality in Canadian politics. We have 5 parties seated in parliament, none have a majority, this forces parties to work together.

Are Canada's politics really that boring?

For the most part. Our election process only takes a few months and most Canadians are extremely turned off from dirty attack ads.
Our politicians are also a lot more accessable. Most interviews with Canadian politicians happens in the hallway of the house of commons, it's actually rare to see an American style presidential press confrence.

How would you like it if American conservatives starting sticking their noses in your political system (not that it would ever happen, we have lives to live) and trying to influence it?

They already do try and manipulate the Candian system.
They failed when they tried to influence gay marriage rights in Canada. But they have had tremendous success when it comes to marihuana legislation (most Canadians want legalization, but because of American influence, Canadian politicians won't even discuss it).

I am truly interested in why some Canadians are so hell bent on the US becoming more like them.

I don't think many Canadians believe America can be just like Canada.
But Canadians do have empathy, and when we see something in America that is better in Canada, we like to share. And there are things in America that are better then the Canadian equivilent and we try to change. And then there are some things where Canadians just like the Canadian way better, but don't feel America should change.


Politics in America is kind of like football, we usually only gain a few yards at time, and it takes many plays to get a touchdown. My "team" is

This is probably the biggest problem with American politics. Running a country is not a game and should not be treated as if it is a game. There isn't two teams, only one America. If a democrat or republican makes a bad decision, it will have a negative effect on all Americans, not just the ones who voted for the other guy.
When I was a kid, I remember some hard fought political contests, but the people remained Americans.
Now you have people like Sarah Palin claiming that only certain people are true Americans. To me, as a partial American with tons of American relatives, I find it very insulting and completely against American history to claim that only people that fit into some ideological mold are true Americans.
The only team in American politics is team "We the People".

why are Liberals so quick to make disparaging remarks ab out others who dont share their political views?

Do you really think liberals are the only ones playing that game?
In-fact the comment above in itself is exactly what the complaint is making. Not only is the poster making assumptions of other posters political leanings, the comment also gives a negative generalization to all liberals.

How would all of those Obama zealots who support Obama unquestionably as unthinking sycophantic neophytes?

You do realize calling someone a zealot is a disparaging remark.

And just to re-iterate. It was the tea party movement that started calling themselves teabaggers. People on the left just thought it was hilarious.

Why is that the moderators of this site let liberal kumbya singing Obama sycophants...

Oh, the irony.
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