Why the Tea Party is Dangerous

By Mike Appleton (Guest Blogger)

In 1773 the British East India Company was broke.  In an effort to prevent bankruptcy, and the resulting loss of the crown’s investment, the British government eliminated all taxes on domestic tea sales and granted the company a monopoly on tea shipments to the American colonies.  In December of that year radicals boarded ships in Boston harbor and threw $75,000.00 worth of tea overboard.  The first Tea Party was a violent reaction to monopolistic economic power protected by government.

The modern Tea Party doesn’t understand history, so it can’t be expected to appreciate irony.  It is a mongrel movement, its leaders self-proclaimed, its agenda by turns unfathomable and incoherent, its philosophy grounded in vehemence.  So how can it possibly be dangerous?  Here, in no particular order, are my four Rs of the Tea Party.

1. It is racist.  I know.  I just played the race card.  But the best way to stop someone from playing the race card is to quit dealing it.  Public expressions of bigotry began as soon as Barack Obama was nominated at the Democratic convention, and continued throughout the campaign, during which prominent Republicans referred to him as “boy,” “uppity” and other vulgarities.  In short order he became a socialist and a Marxist and was then transformed into an extremist Arab Muslim.  Sarah Palin eventually settled on the euphemistic “let’s take our country back,” but we all knew what she meant.  The Tea Party began forming before the inauguration and was printing “Don’t Tread on Me” posters while the Obama family was still unpacking in the White House.  On April 15, 2009, the Tea Party was protesting a tax burden that was, and is, the lowest in 60 years.  

The Tea Party has promoted ugly forms of nativism, including punitive immigration laws,  English only legislation and bans on the teaching of ethnic studies.  It is the 1840s once again, but the targets are Muslims and Hispanics rather than Germans and Irish.

2.  It is a religionist movement.  I don’t know if religionism is a word, but I use it to describe a phenomenon distinct from traditional religion: religion as political philosophy.  It is the view that the Constitution was divinely inspired, that America is God’s gift to mankind, that capitalism is mandated by Holy Scripture and that the notion of “social justice” is the work of the Antichrist.  It is a culmination of the fundamentalist reaction in the early 1900s to Darwin and the progressive movement.  It has spawned a form of Christian imperialism that justifies the “crusades” in Iraq and Afghanistan, supports Israel uncritically and sends American politicians to Africa to lobby for the death penalty for homosexuals. 

3.  It is repressive.  The Tea Party is committed to authoritarianism.  Lawmakers in Congress and throughout the country, particularly in states with heavily Republican legislatures, have been imposing humiliating burdens on women’s constitutional rights at breakneck speed.  They are simultaneously reducing taxes on business  and cutting funding for education and health care.  The regulation of entire industries is being eliminated in certain states.  The integrity of public employees has been impugned and their rights to organize curtailed.  Laws banning the phony threat of sharia are pending in a dozen states.  The independence of the judiciary has been threatened by proposals to reduce courts’ rule-making authority and politicize the judicial selection process.

4.  It is revisionist.  The Christian right and its supporters in legislatures and on school boards have demanded that high school history texts be rewritten to eliminate references to the deism endorsed by many of the Founders in favor of promoting the false notion of America as an exclusively Christian nation.  The history of slavery and the Civil War is being falsified to satisfy the desires of apologists for the Confederacy and southern “values.”   Science cannot be re-written, but it can be denied.  The sciences of climate change and evolutionary processes have become the subjects of unnecessary controversy.

Robert La Follette, a founder of the progressive movement, became governor of Wisconsin in 1900 and immediately took on the railroads, forcing them to pay higher taxes on their assets.  When the new governor of Wisconsin took office this year, he immediately took on labor in an effort to destroy public employee unions and cover the cost of new tax reductions for business.  But like I said earlier.  People who don’t understand history can’t appreciate irony.

254 thoughts on “Why the Tea Party is Dangerous”

  1. Larry,

    Plenty. However, nonsense often doesn’t require refutation as it is nonsense on its face and fails due to being a false statement and/or bereft of logic. Now run along.

    The World Net Daily called and their lil’ village is missing you.

  2. That list of people who you “claim” “defeated” me on facts—how many of them actually REFUTED anything I said?

    I will tell you.


    OS didn’t refute me either…unless you think ad hominem attacks are refutations. I asked him SIMPLE questions that really didn’t have anything to do with conspiratorial issues—like these:

    1. WHO made the Fed independent?
    2. Did VOTERS make it independent?
    3. Did WE THE PEOPLE have any say in the creation of the Fed?
    4. Does the Fed have more authority then CONGRESS?
    5. If the Fed isn’t shady, why did the bankers use aliases when they went to Jekyll Island in 1910 and discuss its formation, and why was the Federal Reserve Act passed over Christmas vacation when almost no one was there to vote on it?

    –and he REFUSED to answer them. Now WHY is that??? Why would he NOT answer these harmless questions? I asked a plethora of Lincoln questions too [on the Lincoln threads] even to the point where I posted LINCOLN’S OWN WORDS and I got nothing but SILENCE from Vince, Mespo, YOU and everyone else. Was it CONSPIRATORIAL to use Lincoln’s OWN WORDS????? Of course not—but you fucktards will say ANYTHING to AVOID answering questions. Even if it makes you look like complete imbeciles.

    OS looks like a scared little school girl because he refuses to answer questions. He gives every reason in the book except the REAL reason: He knows by answering my questions, it will incriminate his own beliefs and worldview—so he does and says ANYTHING to avoid answering them. There is not even any evidence in Mike’s article that actually REFUTES anything he’s trying to prove or disprove—it’s just all his OPINION. But if you go to my site—I actually REFUTE people’s bullshit.


    Go to this site and you will see how actual refutation is done.

  3. Blouise

    It’s nice to see that you feel the need to keep count of so-called Tea Party attendance records. It’s amazing that you would attempt to claim the Teeny Tiny Tea Party Movement is capable of destroying this nation, or is it the huge green eyed boogie monster, which is it?

    Even though you seem deluded enough to believe that you can have it both ways, realities verdict affirms that you cannot. .

    The simple fact is that you are terrified of a movement that will effectively do away with your Racist Liberal Nazi Baby Butchering race baiting, hate mongering self-servient ideology.

    Do you see how easy it is for someone to just write whatever they wish. The simple fact is, there has not been absolutely one shred of proof to support these claims of a mass CONSPIRACY with-in the TEA Party. Unless you include the fabrications created by propagandizing media who has been caught lying at every turn, counts.

    The TEA Party itself does not represent the movement that powers it. It is a Media produced illusion created by the Media Propagandist of both the Democratic and Republican DC Elitist, which got out of their intended control.

    Both parties are terrified not of the Tea Party, but the fact that so many, whether you like that term or not; of everyday people from every walk of life are uniting despite their differences,and that has always been the DC Demagogue’s greatest fear, especially the Liberal Nazi and Conservative Fascist factions.

    Just as dismantling the Klan did not end the White Supremacist Movement, or Assassinating Dr King did not end the Civil Rights Movement, killing the TEA Party will not end the Peoples Movement to take back our government from the control of the Liberal Nazis and Conservative Fascist power mongers.

    As for those who would obediently pounce upon such a view as a conspiracy theory, we are not the first to see this truth emerging.

    “The money powers prey upon the nation in times of peace, and conspire against it in times of adversity. It is more despotic than monarchy, more insolent than autocracy, more selfish than bureaucracy. I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. Corporations have been enthroned, an era of corruption will follow and the money power of the country will endeavor and prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people, until the wealth is aggregated into a few hands and the republic is destroyed.”

    U.S. President Abraham Lincoln, Nov. 21, 1864 (letter to Col. William F. Elkins)

    If there is anything here that fits the bill of a Racist Anti-American Bigot led Conspiracy Theory, it is to be found in this absurdly racist and bigoted article, along with the idiotic bigoted posts that so lamely seek to support it.

    Scholarly Knowledge minus common sense, renders the sum of Over Educated Stupidity!

    This movement is here to stay, and whomever chooses to ignore that fact will perish as a result of their own ignorance, for failing to acknowledge that fact.

    This movement will never die until the days of Entitlement Slavery, both the Racist Left and Right, baby butchering, hate baiting, war mongering tyranny is abolished or exterminated.

  4. Otteray,

    Rachel Maddow did a segment on her program last night about how the Beltway Press/Cable News loved doing stories about the Tea Partiers disrupting the town hall meetings held by Democrats in Congress in the summer of 2009. She says the Beltway Press/Cable News haven’t been as interested in covering the recent contentious town hall meetings about the Ryan Budget held by Republican members of Congress.



    Here’s a link to The People’s Budget proposed by the Congressional Progressive Caucus


    The CPC proposal:

    • Eliminates the deficits and creates a surplus by 2021
    • Puts America back to work with a “Make it in America” jobs program
    • Protects the social safety net
    • Ends the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq
    • Is FAIR (Fixing America’s Inequality Responsibly)

    What the proposal accomplishes:

    • Primary budget balance by 2014.
    • Budget surplus by 2021.
    • Reduces public debt as a share of GDP to 64.1% by 2021, down 16.5 percentage points from
    a baseline fully adjusted for both the doc fix and the AMT patch.
    • Reduces deficits by $5.6 trillion over 2012-21, relative to this adjusted baseline.
    • Outlays equal to 22.2% of GDP and revenue equal 22.3% of GDP by 2021.

  5. SwM, I agree that is what I am reading in the news and on the blogs. On the other hand, I think support for their “principles” is wide but not very deep. They have some very loud voices on the media, especially talk radio and Faux News. That creates tremendous pressure on the Republican party leadership. But as I said, at some point there are going to be some reality bites in the TP folks wallets and they might just start thinking. Of course, some will not and rail against socialism even as they pick up their unemployment checks. But I think many will desert as the batshit crazies take over the party.

    From what I am seeing these days, they might just go down in flames in 2012. They are already engaging in some internecine warfare over who is the most pure. They might just manage to kill off any viable candidates in the primaries. Getting past a party primary and winning a general election are vastly different propositions.

  6. Ninety percent of republicans want tea party “principles” incorporated into their party. I don’t seem them going away anytime soon unless they are defeated in 2012.

  7. Elaine, there is nothing like a reality check in their own bank account. It is one thing to spout talking points like the cartoon character in your video, but quite another when reality comes home to roost.

    I figure the tea party will implode much faster than other such fringe groups, and for this reason. In the meantime, we are treated to the spectacle of US Senators and Representatives kissing the behinds of the likes of St. Sarah, Rush “Where’s my Oxycontin” Limbaugh and Glenn “Lemme Sell You a Gold Brick” Beck.

  8. Buddha,

    It appears that some of the Tea Partiers may be returning to reality once again–now that they realize they could lose that “socialistic” program called Medicare.

    Did you read the following article by Matt Taibbi? I posted an excerpt from it earlier in this thread.


    The Truth About the Tea Party: Matt Taibbi takes down the far-right monster and the corporate insiders who created it
    Rolling Stone
    SEPTEMBER 28, 2010

  9. Elaine,

    “I’m sorry you are so very out of touch with reality . . .”

    Thanks! I literally snorted coffee out of my nose.

    You’d think the writer of that skit reads this blog it was so much like many, many of the conversations here. :mrgreen:

  10. I see the Tea Partiers as an updated, 21st century version of groups like the KKK, the John Birchers of the 20th century, and the Know Nothings of the 19th. What makes them dangerous is that they have a my-way-or-the-highway mentality combined with a lack of empathy for others or an understanding of how government works. They are also history revisionists or are completely ignorant of actual history. Now that some Tea Partiers are in positions of actual power, namely as governors, we are being exposed on a daily basis to how destructive their policies are. In Michigan, Wisconsin, and Florida, for example, it is obvious that the governors in those states are about imposing their regressive ideology on their citizens. This has resulted in disillusionment among even some of the Republicans who voted for them. In the case of Walker and Rick Scott, there was already ample evidence in their recent pasts that voting for them was a horrible idea. Rick Snyder of Michigan campaigned as a “tough nerd,” which should be instructive for not falling for that kind of okey doke in the future. I firmly believe that sooner or later all of these men will either be recalled or voted out of office. But by then, they will have done considerable damage in their states.

  11. BIL, he does give me the opportunity to post videos ridiculing him. We can give him that. I have been thinking about using the Annoying Orange next, but that might be too cruel on everyone else.

  12. Larry,

    Let’s do a count shall we?

    Larry defeated on the facts in the past (sometimes more than once) by:

    Vince Treacy
    Anonymously Yours
    Elaine M.
    and lil’ ol’ me.

    Times Larry has won an argument here on the facts or for any other reason:

    Precisely Zero

    I’m pretty sure nobody here is “scared” of your intellect.

    “Amused” might be a better word although I’m sure some might prefer “annoyed”.

    See Larry, what you don’t get is that you’re completely full of crap and almost anyone who graduated high school can tell. Your understanding of history is on par with Grandpa Simpson. Many of us don’t even bother to read your posts anymore . . . the replies, sure, because often they are funny, but your posts proper . . . not so much. When we do, we just laugh and move on. The ideas you spread aren’t even really dangerous because you are obviously in the same league with people who yell from the street corners about how fluoridating the water is an alien conspiracy implemented by the Freemasons because cavities are the only thing that block out the alien mind control rays – that and a conscientious application of aluminum foil.

    Why don’t you try selling your zany plots over at “Legendary Times” or “World Net Daily”?


    The more outrageous the claim or conspiracy, the better they like it.

    Maybe you can scare them with your brain power.

  13. Larry, in the words of the inimitable Buddha, this is not radio and I do not do requests.

    Thank you for your cooperation.

    You remand me just a bit of this fellow in the black suit:

  14. OS, do you realize that your refusal to actually READ my posts and answer my questions makes you look like the complete buffoon you are? You call ME the nut with the nutjob theories, but YOU refuse to answer MY questions!

    I guarantee you one thing: If I was well-informed on a particular subject…say engineering, and someone rattled off lies and theories about the subject that I had great knowledge of, I sure as hell wouldn’t respond to that person by saying “Im done with you and your theories” because I would have a multitude of facts to back me up and make that person look like the fool they were. I sure as hell wouldn’t make it appear I was SCARED to confront that person and make them appear smarter!

    But that’s EXACTLY what you are doing to me in this case. You claim that YOU are the expert and the one with the facts and I’m the nut, but yet YOU are the one running from the debate and leaving me, the “nut” as you say, appear to be the expert and the one with all the facts [which of course, I am, but you making my case for me is not the way a debate is supposed to go]. You’re supposed to be making your case with FACTS, not ad hominem attacks—that makes YOU the “nut”, not me!

  15. Larry, both the JBS and the teaparty are fringe groups that will go into the dustbin of history, just like the “No Nothings” and any other number of now-forgotten groups that may have burned brightly for a brief time, then disappeared.

    Here is a “fringe” song for late at night.

  16. “Larry, I call bullshit on your cockamamie theories. I do not have time to waste on you and your ill informed notions. Go get a doctorate in economics, come back and we can talk.”

    Translation: When someone mentions FACTS about something that is a TRUE and REAL conspiracy [formation of the Fed] and I have NO FACTS to counter their argument, I will just call them names so I will receive unwarranted cheers and praises from my moronic supporters.

    I would win a formal debate buddy! I am listing dates and actual FACTS and your counter argument is calling me a “nut”. Ad hominem attacks is not the same as winning. You take the Bill O Reilly/bully approach. If we were in person, would you cut my mic? LOL.

  17. Blouise—-there you go again, implying the Tea Party is a FRINGE group that has no influence and is irrelevent. But YET, the article by Mike says they are “dangerous”. A very very small, fringe, insignificant number of people is dangerous? How?

    I find it laughable that when the liberals want the Tea Party to go away, they downplay the tea party’s numbers and call them “fringe” and “irrelevent”, but when they want to portray them as “terrorists” or “communists” or America haters, they make the Tea Party look HUGE as if they have MAJOR influence.

    You can’t have it both ways. They are either small/fringe or huge/influential. Which is it????

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