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Friday, April 10, 2009

Tea Parties Are Sooo Scaaary

Robert Stacy McCain has the run down on the apoplectic reaction of liberals to the "tea parties" sweeping the country. His post appropriately is titled "WTF" based on this hyperventilation (via Instapundit) by someone who apparently only watches MSNBC:

President Obama was elected democratically, according to the doctrines set forth by the Founding Fathers. The Tea Party movement represents a real danger to the tenets of democracy Americans have embraced for centuries.
The editors of the San Francisco Examiner (I thought it was out of business, no?) put this fearful title on an otherwise reasonable article explaining how the liberal bias of the mainstream media has blinded them to the tea party phenomenon: Tea parties are flash crowds Obama should fear. One commenter, who apparently read the headline but not the article, commented: "Many of those signing on to these tea parties are from the militia movement groups. They are scary and potentially violent."

Media Matters is on the case, to prevent the revolution led by FOX News: "Despite its repeated insistence that its coverage is "fair and balanced" and its invitation to viewers to "say 'no' to biased media," Fox News has frequently aired segments encouraging viewers to get involved with "tea party" protests across the country ...."

The Huffington Post is organizing "citizen journalists" to attend the protests, allegedly to "report." Which means that they will try to find someone in a crowd who says something stupid, will post it on the internet, and build an argument around it trying to demonize the movement. And left-wing bloggers will react in unison like dogs responding to a whistle, about the "dangerous" and "violent" and "racist" tea parties. This tactic is as old as time; or at least as old as the internet.

Expect counter-protestors: "This may be really, really short notice, but those tea parties really make me angry! I'd like to go and protest - would anyone be interested in joining me?" Nothing wrong with that, but if it turns into fight-baiting, you know who will get the blame.

Others are in full denial, and think ridicule is the way to go: "As a liberal, I desperately fear the great big Tea-Bag Party scheduled for April 15, in the sense that I may just crack some ribs laughing. Will this sort of thing ever get old?" I think Eugene Robinson would call such a post "snarky" (or is it "snarly"?).

But not to worry, the tea parties are just "Lots and Lots of Wingnut Weird." Sounds like Obama in San Francisco talking about all those racist, bible-clutching, dumb-ass people from the countryside. The people sure is scary.

UPDATE: And So It Goes In Shreveport has a great post: I'm a PO'd Red Meat Eatin' American

UPDATE No. 2: Not Tea Party related, but worth noting, CNN had a pretty reasonable segment on Obama bowing down to the King of Saudi Arabia, and here is the reaction from the aptly named Crooks and Liars: "OK, what the heck is CNN doing in this segment? Is there something wrong with Blitzer and their news department? For them to waste almost three minutes of their biggest news show on something as trivial and ignorant as the conservative kerfluffle over Obama's bow to King Abdullah is quite shocking."

You can imagine the shrill screams if CNN and other networks do a fair job of reporting on the Tea Parties.

Update No. 3: Andrew Sullivan, of Trigg Palin hoax hoax fame, adds this to the debate: "These are not tea-parties. They are tea-tantrums. And the adolescent, unserious hysteria is a function not of a movement regrouping and refinding itself. It's a function of a movement's intellectual collapse and a party's fast-accelerating nervous breakdown."

See, this movement is not as organized and intellectually neat as Sullivan would prefer; that's what happens when movements are genuine, not cooked up in a community-organizer play book.

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Is Ed Schultz Due For An Olbermann Rant?

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32 comments:

  1. huh? i'm a liberal and i've been all over the coverage of tea baggers. most of what i've seen is complete mockery of the teabaggers (have you seen all the videos?). no one i know is "scared" of the demonstrations, they're looking forward to them. i know i am.

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  2. of course, comments have to be pre-approved to be posted here. i don't know why i would be surprised whenever i find another conservative site that prescreens all comments. now who comes across as scared?

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  3. wow i'm not surprised that yet another liberal is convinced! that he or she is being censored, while at the same time, laughing about censoring conservatives.

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  4. Dear God I pray that the previous poster is simply parodying those you were making fun of (otherwise my respect for the opposition just dropped dramatically).

    But as to the actual subject of the post:

    I have no idea whether these protests will be a success or not; all I know is that I will be attending one and it will be the first protest that I have ever actually been to.

    However, I can say without a doubt that the media will attempt to ignore any success and highlight any failures.

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  5. I'll take our wingnuts over theirs any day.

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  6. Thanks for the link! :)

    As for the protests, at least with the HuffPo crowd planning their infiltration and counter protests maybe the media will actually pay attention.

    I don't actually care if the media pays attention so much; I'd prefer that Washington pays attention.

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  7. wow i'm not surprised that yet another liberal is convinced! that he or she is being censored, while at the same time, laughing about censoring conservatives.

    i didn't say i was being censored. i said the comments were pre-screeened. (which is true)

    i also said that pre-screening comments suggests to me that you're afraid of what might be said in the absence of such pre-approval. (which is also true)

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  8. upyernoz, you're being way too paranoid about pre-screening. Blogspot sites are constantly barraged with advertising and bots--it's more likely in place to keep you from seeing viagra ads than keeping you down. (I have a blogspot that might get 2 views a month, and I STILL get bots trying to post ads on it, which is what forced me to pre-screen comments).

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  9. "i also said that pre-screening comments suggests to me that you're afraid of what might be said in the absence of such pre-approval. (which is also true)"


    Oh yeah, I'm sure he quivers with fear over potential devastating retorts from Leftists. Clearly, abject terror is the only possible explanation for moderated comments.

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  10. That article from the Examiner is flatly terrified.

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  11. Redress of Grievances: Its not just for breakfast anymore.

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  12. "OK, what the heck is CNN doing in this segment?"

    Thus the left proves Andrew Klavan's point, the only argument they have is "Shut up."

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  13. upyernoz, you're being way too paranoid about pre-screening. Blogspot sites are constantly barraged with advertising and bots--it's more likely in place to keep you from seeing viagra ads than keeping you down.

    that's odd, because there are plenty of sites that don't screen their comments and they don't seem to be overrun with spam. i don't and i use blogspot. and yet i get almost no spam. then again, i use haloscan for my comments. maybe spambots don't deal well with third party comment programs.

    Clearly, abject terror is the only possible explanation for moderated comments.

    it's no less plausible than mr. jacobson's claims that liberals are afraid of tea parties. as i said above, the liberals i hang around with think the whole teabagging movement is hilarious. what i'm seeing is a lot of mockery, not much fear.

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  14. Like Jayne_Cobb, this will be the first protest of any sort I'll be attending. I'll mostly go and take pictures and not talk too much to any given person.

    I'll be on the look out for the HuffPo types.

    As fer upyernoz: if there's so much mockery, not fear, why is HuffPo/ACORN and the like contemplating infiltrating and causing disturbances? hopefully, they'll respect the right of the people to gather and peacefully ask for the redress of grievances.

    But if they want to show up and throw down...we'll see what happens.

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  15. "it's no less plausible than mr. jacobson's claims that liberals are afraid of tea parties."

    I dunno, the Media Matters douchebags sure appear to be concerned, not much hilarity in their report. And there are multiple reasons for a site to have moderated comments. Fear of the Big Brained Leftist is a theoretically possible, but highly unlikely, motivation.

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  16. The half-a-sissies and limp wrists who are wetting themselves over the tea parties SHOULD BE AFRAID.

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  17. The host of this site is also a law professor. And while formally, you shouldn't hold him to account for whatever vile, foul or obscene things can get posted in his comments, the reality is that people do just that anyway.

    In point of fact, Progressive bloggers often cite the most absurd, off-the-wall, inappropriate and often unrelated comments as proof that the bloggers themselves are pushing the ideas. See ProteinWisdom for an old and somewhat notorious thread on the subject regarding FireDogLake.

    So, better to simply moderate the comments.

    A lot of us are former Progressives. So we know that part of being a Progressive is the lure of helmeting yourself with a belief in your moral superiority.

    Piece of advice: you'd be better off exploring alternative incentives before you assume ("comments suggest to me") evil intentions.

    If it's anything to you, it will make you a better person.

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  18. Mr Jacobson,
    Just wanted to let you know that the Examiner is the only conservative-leaning daily here in SF - they actually endorsed McCain in the election. The San Francisco Chronicle is the liberal rag that can't go bankrupt fast enough.

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  19. Which means that they will try to find someone in a crowd who says something stupid, will post it on the internet, and build an argument around it trying to demonize the movement.

    Thanks for the easy material!

    Though I'm not going to link you, as you're far too whorish about it.

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  20. "I don't actually care if the media pays attention so much; I'd prefer that Washington pays attention."

    Well put Pat. I'm going and I don't give a damn about the MSM. The point of going is to get our local leaders to hear their constituents and to take that message to the Hill so that the Fed know we aren't playing around, that we don't appreciate being spent into oblivion and that we are sick of Congress trying to "parent" the people instead of remembering they are elected representatives who can just as easily shown the door should they decide to renege on all those wonderful proclamations they make to get elected in the first place. I don't see how that concept is partisan. I know a good mix of folks going—moderate Republicans, moderate Dems, Libertarians, Independents.
    Be there or be square I say :-)

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  21. This is what I've been fearing. I support and will attend the tea party in Boston. I am a Constitution-loving libertine whose mantra is "If it isn't in there, the federal government can't do it." The most powerful part of the Constitution is the Tenth Amendment.

    And yet this movement, spreading like wildfire, is already devolving into liberal vs. conservative name calling. WAKE UP PEOPLE!! This isn't about Democrats. It isn't about Republicans. THEY ARE BOTH WRONG AND A BIGGER CAUSE OF THE PROBLEM THAN A SOLUTION TO IT!! This is quite literally about the survival of the American Ideal. The Constitution is under attack FROM BOTH PARTIES. Only the people can save it, so stop hurling childish invective at each other and GET TO WORK!

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  22. Interesting how Liberals chastised George Bush prior to his inauguration 24-7 until he left office 8 years later, all the time extolling the virtues of healthy dissent. It seems we have a case of thin skinned hyprocisy combined with a lust for higher taxes.

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  23. The far left is just as plainly paranoid as the far right and I have no use for either of them whatsoever. It's as annoying as listening to a backyard of 6 year old children squabbling.

    I think this more a case of the larger "middle" FINALLY speaking up as a group and it is obviously freaking them out. It won't surprise me to see the republicans try and get out in front of this and try to steer it in their direction but as far as I'm concerned the last eight yeas has shredded any claim to "leadership" that they may hope for.

    This really is people just expressing how sick they are of government in general.

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  24. An e-mail from someone who had trouble posting a comment:

    "About moderated comments: Yesterday I read a story on Wonkette where she encourages her audience to go over to Tea Party sites and spam them and bring them down. Then there are hundreds of comments on her site mocking the Tea Party sites for NOT moderating comments, saying any Net-savvy blogger knows to moderate comments(the tedious by now meme that the Left is more net-savvy than the Right).

    And upyernoz knows as well as I do that plenty of Left sites moderate comments. In fact Daily KOS lets its members kick people off the site for not toeing the party line."

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  25. i am quite excited as this will also be my first protest as well. Ill be on the lookout for the huffpo and acorn people however i dont really think anyone is going to come to miami to do that, its too out of the way

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  26. So the Huffington Post is urging people to attend these ridiculous protests--protesting Bush-era tax rates, I guess--in the hopes of finding someone who "says something stupid."

    Based on the whole concept--from the hilarious use of the word "teabagging" to the involvement of idiots like Glenn Beck and Michelle Malkin--finding someone who "says something stupid" at these dunce-fests will be like shooting fish in a barrel.

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  27. Hey Skippy, you stay on the lookout for those evil ACORN people, OK?

    BOO!

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  28. "President Obama was elected democratically, according to the doctrines set forth by the Founding Fathers. The Tea Party movement represents a real danger to the tenets of democracy Americans have embraced for centuries."

    Uh um ah er Dissent is Patriotic...I heard a Democrat say that so it must be true/sarc

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  29. I welcome the tea party protests, It looks a lot like anti-goverment prostests in Tailand. Get your guns and shoot at police and our soldiers because you lost the election. Oh of course you are you justified to overthrough the democracy because, Obama is not a citizen, the constitution is being upsurped. Ha ha. Loosers.

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  30. so i guess this what we have to look foward to from you people. Afraid of free speech and the first ammendment.

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  31. Liberals fear that Obama will be influenced by the Tea Parties, then he won't give them their free house, car, and insurance.

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  32. Where were the tea partiers when Bush was mandating $5.5 trillion in new taxes, never having seen a spending bill he didn't like until 2006?

    Where were they whem McCain's campaign co-chair Phil Gramm deregulated the credit swap market in 1999?

    They've been AWOL since then. That's ten years. Obama's been in 4 months. What is that, 3%?

    I blame Obama 3%. =)

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