By John Stauber on April 14, 2009

Who makes up the Tea Party movement? The Tax Day Tea Party protest movement is not as spontaneous as its organizers would like you to think. Chris Good writes, "Here is the organizational landscape of the April 15 tea party movement, in a nutshell: three national-level conservative groups, all with slightly different agendas, are guiding it. All are quick to tell you that the movement is a bottom-up affair and that its grassroots cred is real. They are: FreedomWorks, the conservative action group led by Dick Armey; dontGO, a tech savvy free-market action group that sprung out of last August's oil-drilling debate in the House of Representatives; and Americans for Prosperity, an issue advocacy/activist group based on free market principles. Conservative bloggers, talk show hosts, and other media figures have attached themselves to the movement in peripheral capacities. Armey will appear at a major rally in Atlanta, FreedomWorks said. All three groups vehemently deny that the movement is a product of AstroTurfing -- fake grassroots activism organized from the top down -- as some on the left have claimed."

Comments

You are incorrect about this not being a grassroots movement. I have no affiliation with any party, yet I have helped organize my towns tea party. This movement is real and our voice will be heard! You and others can ridicule, laugh at, and attempt to discredit us all you want. We will stand firm in our right to protest against over taxation, overspending by government, and the intrusion of government into our lives. Please respect my right to voice my opinion.

Makes one wonder why this protest didn't occur last year when the public debt was doubled by Fmr. Pres. Bush over an 8 year period.

I guess some over-spending is OK when it's a neo-con doing it. . . .

Obviously, you haven't attended any tea parties, I organized two of them last year,and at both of them George Bush and the Republican machine was directly called out for their misuse of public funds and several other reasons. I suggest you come out from behind your little computer screen and attend one of these events. We simply believe in our constitution and the limited powers granted to the federal government. These tea parties are also here to protect your rights, so please attend one. I'm an over the road truck driver, so I know if I can not only organize a tea party but also attend,then surely you can find the time.

No one is denying your right to voice your opinion and protest against taxing and spending, and you seem like a genuine grassroots person to me.

But if a movement is in fact set in motion by elite groups who may or may not be disclosing their full agendas, I question whether it should really be called grassroots, no matter how many grassroots people it attracts.

Because you've said you're not affiliated with any party, you might want to consider this report: from rawstory.com:

Libertarians say Republicans have hijacked tea party movement
David Edwards and John Byrne
Published: Wednesday April 15, 2009

As conservatives coalesce in nationwide protests against rising taxes, government spending and what they call the "bailout mentality" of President Barack Obama's Administration, the ship appears to have sprung a leak.

Speaking on MSNBC's Rachel Maddow show Tuesday evening, Rep. Ron Paul's (R-TX) media coordinator Steve Gordon decried what he characterized as an attempt by mainstream conservative Republicans to hijack a long-cherished libertarian cause. Paul was a longshot candidate for the Republican presidential nomination last year.

Gordon brought Maddow a gift of Southern tea bags -- using them as a metaphor for what he said was a Southern version of conservatism, sweetened by taxes and deficit spending.

Gordon singled out former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich, a Georgia native, and Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee.

"Newt Gingrich is a good example," Gordon said. "He could be one of these two tea bags because he likes his tea bags sweetened with TARP [Troubled Asset Relief Program] funding. This other one could be Mike Huckabee, 'Tax Hike Mike' because he likes his tea bag sweetened with tax increases. So you see we've got a bunch of republican, senior Republican officials in the deep south who can't tell if their tea bags are swinging from the left or the right."

[More at the link,]

We got 8 years of GOP rule and the deficit doubled. And we are in a deep recession because of it.

It's not the right to protest people are laughing at. There were good points being made at some of these tea parties. What people are ridiculing is all the hate speech and ignorance that many are showing at the tea parties. Protesting overtaxation and overspending is fine but most of these people were just upset right wingers protesting obama. I heard many shouting things like "burn the books" and "hang obama". when they say that he is spending less on the military and making us less safe they don't know what they are talking about. Obama has proposed a 4% increase in military spending. when they talk about him raising their taxes once again they don't know what they are talking about because Obama as of the first of this month lowered taxes for EVERYONE making less than 200,000 a year.
Most people at these parties are good people just misinformed. Don't go repeating everything you get in an E-mail or see on fox news without checking it out first. Fox news knows that you will repeat whatever they tell you and they make stuff up to spread outrage that is unfounded and misguided.

The deficit doubled the past 8 years because of the war, which has nothing to do with the recession, or "CRISIS" as our uber-positive president likes to call it every time the teleprompter says to. Liberals love to spend and increase the size of government, raising your taxes to pay for it all. Tell me sir how much the deficit is going to increase with the current administration? You might be surprised.

it takes an uber-positive president to rebrand a "global war on terror" as "overseas contingency operations."

But tell me, sir, how can you say, sir, that the war has nothing to do with the recession? How, sir, do you exclude the Pentagon and the perpetual struggle for global empire from "the size of government"? The resources poured into it should instead go towards putting and keeping our own house in order, sir.

I for one will not be surprised at all, sir, at how much the deficit will increase under this administration. What does surprise me, sir, is that anyone can mentally divorce the squandering of our resources on perpetual war from the neglect of domestic needs and the economic and social miseries that result.

You're only partially correct... The deficit more than doubled under Bush due to:

1. Bush's 2001 unfunded tax cut (1.8 trillion)
2. Bush's 2003 unfunded tax cut (700 billion)
3. The Iraq War, also unfunded and off-budget (800 billion and counting)
4. Medicare Part D, unfunded (600 billion)

So big tax cuts primarily for the wealthiest in our society, combined witht the largest unfinded expansion of entitlements in 4 decades, combined with 2 unfunded wars... and there you are. Huge spending and a global war on terror with no sacrifice back home except "go shopping"!

Atta Boy!!!!!

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