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Lies, damned lies and statistics


Warning: This is another post is about those awful tea-bagging mad hatters and may induce headaches, nausea, flatulence and/or incontinence in some people. Reader discretion is advised

 



From MSNBC:

 

Just 32% of Tea Party candidates win

For all the talk of the Tea Party’s strength – and there will certainly be a significant number of their candidates in Congress – just 32% of all Tea Party candidates who ran for Congress won and 61.4% lost this election.


The first thing that jumped out at me was “MSNBC.”

 

I’m not calling anyone a liar but I wouldn’t trust that outfit to present the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth on the topic of Tea Partiers any more than I would trust FOX News to be fair and balanced on the same subject.

Continue reading

Weak tea

F**king F**ksticks!


I was reading this article by Dave Weigel at Slate and I realized that “What the fuck?” month is still going on. It starts with this:

We sit down and we’re given the full details for the conference: “Fractures, Alliances, and Mobilizations: Emerging Analyses of the Tea Party Movement.” It’s the first event of its kind hosted by Berkeley’s two-year-old Center for the Comparative Study of Right-Wing Movements.

Do you get the feeling that just maybe there might be little bit of bias here? It’s kinda like Baylor University doing a comparative study of Mormonism.

But wait! There’s more:

But the social scientists are more ready than the historians to crunch numbers and prove that racial animosity is key to the Tea Party. It’s cold comfort for people like Hardy Frye, but it does suggest that Obama’s ability to form some grand populist coalition was always limited. The University of Washington’s Christopher Parker shares his research-in-progress based on interviews in seven states that break down subjects into “true skeptics” of the Tea Party at one end and “true believers” at the other.

“If you look across the board here, true skeptics of the Tea Party, 49 percent agreed with the proposition that blacks ought to work their way up without any special favors,” says Parker. “But if you look at the true believers, that goes to 92 percent. This is another indicator of racism, right: Over the past few years, blacks have gotten less than they deserve. Forty-five percent of true skeptics disagree with this; almost 80 percent of true believers disagree with this.”

After all the media and progblogger hoopla about how the Tea Party is nothing but the Klan minus the white sheets, THIS is their proof?

I think we need a new rule – Everyone is presumed to be not guilty of racism unless they:

1. Use racial epithets and/or stereotypes

2. Advocate discrimination and/or the superiority of one race over another.

3. Actually discriminate based on race

Allegations of racism must be supported by clear and convincing evidence.





Born to Party


If you want to understand the Tea Party movement you should read Born Fighting: How the Scots-Irish Shaped America by Senator James Webb of Virginia:

The Scots-Irish (sometimes called the Scotch-Irish) are all around you, even though you probably don’t know it. They are a force that shapes our culture, more in the abstract power of emotion than through the argumentative force of law. In their insistent individualism, they are not likely to put an ethnic label on themselves when they debate societal issues. Some of them don’t even know their ethnic label, and some who do don’t particularly care. They don’t go for group-identity politics any more than they like to join a union. Two hundred years ago the mountains built a fierce and uncomplaining self-reliance into an already hardened people. To them, joining a group and putting themselves at the mercy of someone else’s collective judgment makes as much sense as letting the government take their guns. And nobody is going to get their guns.

Webb wrote in a WSJ article*:

The Scots-Irish comprised a large percentage of Reagan Democrats, and contributed heavily to the “red state” votes that gave Mr. Bush the presidency in 2000. The areas with the highest Scots-Irish populations include New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, the Carolinas, Georgia, Alabama, northern Florida, Mississippi, Arkansas, northern Louisiana, Missouri, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado, southern Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, and parts of California, particularly Bakersfield. The “factory belt,” especially around Detroit, also has a strong Scots-Irish mix.

These are my people – I am descended from redneck dirt farmers in Kansas and Oklahoma. There ain’t no royalty in my bloodline. At one time in my life I even lived in a single-wide mobile home. Yep, I’m trailer trash.

But we aren’t entirely unique – there are millions of Americans descended from the poor commoners of Europe, Mexico, Central and South America. These are places where the land was owned by aristocrats and the commoners worked the land or lived in the margins – the hills and swamps. They didn’t emigrate to the United States to get rich, they came here to make a living and to be left alone.

Mackubin T. Owens:

These are the “red state” voters. They are family-oriented, take morality seriously, go to church, join the US military, support America’s wars, and listen to country music. They strongly believe that no man is obligated to obey the edicts of a government that violates his moral conscience. They once formed the bedrock of the Democratic Party—from the time of Andrew Jackson until the Vietnam era—but they have been moving to the Republicans since then. In a recent Wall Street Journal article, Webb called the Scots-Irish in America the “the secret GOP weapon.”

These people aren’t “country club” Republicans like the Bush family, they are the rank and file voters and they are the core of the Tea Party movement.

Continue reading

The other Glenn talks tea

tea-baggers-washington_independent

From Glenn Greenwald:

Far more interesting than Beck himself is the increasingly futile effort to classify the protest movement to which he has connected himself. Here, too, confusion reigns. In part, this is due to the fact that these “tea party” and “9/12″ protests are composed of factions with wildly divergent views about most everything. From paleoconservatives to Ron-Paul-libertarians to LaRouchians to Confederacy-loving, race-driven Southerners to Christianist social conservatives to single-issue fanatics (abortion, guns, gays) to standard Limbaugh-following, Bush-loving Republicans, these protests are an incoherent mishmash without any cohesive view other than: “Barack Obama is bad.” There are unquestionably some highly noxious elements in these groups, but they are far from homogeneous. Many of these people despised the Bush-led GOP and many of them loved it.

Add to all of that the fact that this anti-Obama sentiment is being exploited by run-of-the-mill GOP operatives who have no objective other than to undermine Democrats and return the Republicans to power — manifestly not the goal of many of the protesters — and it’s impossible to define what this movement is or what is driving it. In many ways, its leadership (both organizationally and in the media) is fundamentally at odds with the participants. How can people who cheered on the Bush/Cheney administration and who want to re-install GOP leaders in power (i.e., Fox News, Limbaugh, the right-wing blogosphere, GOP House members) possibly make common cause in any coherent way with those who are in favor of limited federal government power, reduced debt, privacy, and Constitutional protections — all the things on which the GOP relentlessly waged war for years? In one important sense, the “tea party” movement is similar to the Obama campaign for “change”: it stays sufficiently vague and unspecific to enable everyone to read into what they want, so that people with fundamentally irreconcilable views believe they’re part of the same movement.

Too many lefty opponents of Obama are supporting the tea party movement under the theory that “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”  These people are not our friends, and the correct adage is “If you lie down with dogs you wake up with fleas .”

At the Tea Party Express website you will see that the events are sponsored by Free Republic, Dick Armey’s FreedomWorks and other conservative groups. The events are advertised on conservative blogs and FOX News, and their speakers include Ann Coulter.

The Tea Party Express “delegation” includes:

Lew Uhler
Chairman, National Tax-Limitation Committee PAC

(Uhler is a former advisor to Ronald Reagan and according to Sourcewatch NTLC is an ally of the tobacco industry in fighting cigarette taxes)

Deborah Johns and Mark Williams
Vice Chairmen, Our Country Deserves Better PAC

(OCDB was formed in July 2008 to oppose Barack Obama and endorsed Republican Jim Tedisco in the special election to replace Kirsten Gillibrand.  According to Sourcewatch “officers of the Our Country Deserves Better PAC overlap extensively with current and former leaders of the pro-war organization Move America Forward” MAF is “headed by California Republican activists, talk show hosts and staff members of the public relations firm Russo Marsh & Rogers, which has strong ties to the Republican Party. PR professional Sal Russo is the chief strategist for MAF. It is a conservative 501c3 not-for-profit organization formed in early 2004 by Howard Kaloogian and “acclaimed radio and television personality” Melanie Morgan (formerly of KSFO 560 AM — San Francisco).”)


“By their works ye shall know them”


tea bag protester


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Res ipsa loquitor


The above video was recorded at the 9/12 Tea Party in DeeCee.


NOTE:

If you are confused as to why the tea baggers are so hostile to a “Public Option” in health care insurance, think of it using this preexisting analogy:

Imagine if any time you needed to send a package or letter you were free to choose between using Federal Express or United Parcel Service. Then one day the government announced that it was starting a non-profit agency called the United States Post Office that you had to consider as an alternative.

Who wouldn’t be furious at the thought of socialized mail service competing with red-blooded free enterprise?


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