Obama as a Socialist Dictator?

Billboards presenting Barack Obama, Adolf Hitler and Vladimir Lenin appeared last week in Mason City, Iowa, in the central part of the United States.”Radical leaders prey on the fearful and naive” – can be read on the posters that were hung by the local representatives of the Tea party. Some political comentator claim those posters imply similarities between the American President, and both the Nazi and Communist leaders. What is more, over the image of Obama we can read the sign: “Democratic Socialism”. Similarly, under the photograph of Hitler’s -“National Socialism”, and over the head of Lenin – “Marxist socialism.” Under each shot the word “Change” appears- a slogan of the last presidental campaign. As Bob Johnson says, a co-founder of the North Iowa Tea Party: “The purpose of the billboard was to draw attention to the socialism. It seems to have been lost in the visuals. The pictures overwhelmed the message. The message is socialism.” Nevertheless, the posters linking Obama to Hitler and Stalin were criticized not only by American media , but also by other members of the Tea Party movement.As Shelby Blakely, a member of the Tea Party Patriots observes: “That’s just a waste of money, time, resources and it’s not going to help our cause. It’s going to make people think that the tea party is full of a bunch of right-wing fringe people, and that’s not true.”

Sources: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100713/ap_on_re_us/us_iowa_obama_billboard_3http://www.google.com/imghp ;

Published in: on July 17, 2010 at 9:13 am  Leave a Comment  

Tea Party and the Parlamentary Elections

Polish media mention American Tea Party only in the context of the November parlamentary elections. As one of the biggest Polish newspapers Gazeta Wyborcza writes, Republicans could win the November elections and take control of one of the chambers of Congress. Some commentators say that this opinion is just an evidence of America’s ideological shift to the “right.” This year, America will have to deal with the election, during which Americans in particular will want to show that they are fed up with old politicians and their systems, therefore that they want a change. In two previous elections, criticism was aimed very strongly at the Republicans because of the negative opinion of Bush’s presidency. Now it will hit the Democrats, because they control both the Congress and the White House. Thus, Republicans will probably win the election in five months, mainly because two thirds of electors are against Democrats and Obama. Once again, as during the Bush’s presidency, it appears that negative emotions are stronger than positive one.

Thus, American citizens do not want the old status quo. What we can observe nowadays in the U.S is a fast-growing popularity of the Conservatives, mainly the Tea Party Movement. It is said that the Tea Party Movement will play a significant role in the November parliamentary elections and the coming presidential election. Obama may therefore find himself in a situation similar to Clinton’s when a popular president lost the majority in Congress. With so strong anti- governmental mood of America it would be interesting to ask if America is ready to break the two-party system. Republicans and Democrats monopolized the entire political space. But the fact that one third of electors would like to see the creation of a third party shows that Americans are tired with these two parties and their politicians.

Sources: http://wyborcza.pl/1,76842,7889015,Nie_wierze_politykom.html

Published in: on July 17, 2010 at 9:10 am  Leave a Comment  

Big Government?

The Tea Party also protests the idea of „big government“ in both stimulus packages and also in the health care debate. Tea Party members love to criticize President Obama for allowing government to get „too big,“ while forgetting how big government became under President Bush.

Personally, when I think of big government I think of the USA Patriot Act. The USA Patriot Act robbed Americans of multiple civil liberties, without any protest. The Patriot Act allows wiretapping without a warrant and so-called „sneak and peak“ search and seizures. The „sneak and peak“ searches allow the government to enter your home without a warrant, and also does not require that the F.B.I inform you that your home was searched. Until recently, the government had access to check what books you were borrowing from the library. One of the most terrifying aspects of the Patriot Act is that the term „terrorist“ is not defined. This allows the government to choose who they would like to be defined as a terrorist, which could mean anyone critical of the government or any political opponents.

The Tea Party never mentions the Patriot Act when discussing big government or anything relating to the war or the post-9/11 world.

To the Tea Party, big government is a term reserved for stimulus packages, health care, and gun control. Tea Party members are convinced that „big government“ are coming for their guns, when in reality, President Obama has never mentioned any plans to reform gun control. The claims of „big government“ cannot be taken seriously if they fail to mention one of the biggest attacks against our civil liberties, which was the Patriot Act of 2001.

Published in: on July 16, 2010 at 8:53 pm  Leave a Comment  

Fox News prefers Tea

Fox’s sympathy towards the Tea Party movement is by now common knowledge. Knowing this, it is no surprise that Fox has different feelings when it comes to the Coffee Party and CNN. In this article I found on the Fox News website Fox claims that CNN allegedly “salutes the Coffee Party” while ridiculing a movement of perhaps hundreds of thousands of peaceful Tea Party protestors”.

Greg Gutfeld compares CNN’s coverage of the Coffee Party with the coverage the Tea Party is getting. The results are shocking yet so appear so logical. CNN promotes the Tea Party as being “anti-government” and “anti-CNN since this is highly promoted by the right-wing conservative network Fox.” And Fox does them a favor by letting Gutfeld write this comment which underlines the argument of the Tea Party’s anti-CNN stance by claiming the things I just mentioned. So the battle between the Tea Party and the Coffee Party is not only a battle based on different political views but also used as playground for the major news networks to drag each other through the mire.

Published in: on July 15, 2010 at 8:56 am  Leave a Comment  

The Tea Party & Racism

One widely shared view among those who oppose the Tea Party movement, is that the group’s protests are not motivated by Obama’s plans, but by his race. One has to question the motives behind their protests, especially since protests did not exist during former President Bush’s tax cuts for the wealthy, or during the first stimulus package. At their protests for the stimulus packages, I did not hear any mention of the first stimulus package which was initiated by former President Bush in his last months in office.

The Tea Party movement blames Obama for the “higher taxes” they have been paying, but most middle class Americans have actually seen their taxes decrease this past year.”The only tax I think that has been put in place so far is an increase in the federal cigarette tax. I can’t think of another Obama tax that has gone in place so far,” said Chris Edwards, Director of Tax Policy Studies at the Cato Institute. “I would say that people are angry because big taxes are coming down the road because of the gigantic deficit built up under Bush.” In fact, the White House reported that President Obama supplied over $200 billion in tax relief for middle class families.

Recently, actress Janeane Garofalo spoke to MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann and stated, “Let’s be very honest about what this is about. This is not about bashing Democrats. It’s not about taxes. They have no idea what the Boston Tea party was about. They don’t know their history at all. It’s about hating a black man in the White House,” Garofalo then went on to say, “This is racism straight up and is nothing but a bunch of teabagging rednecks. There is no way around that.”

On the “New Rules” segment of Real Time with Bill Maher, Maher compares the Tea Party to a cult rather than a movement. Maher says, “I know that in their world “freedom” means “guns,” “diplomacy” means “weakness,” “elitist” means “reader,” and “socialist” means “black.”

 This idea is not only shared by these celebrities, but also by the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Just this week the NAACP has announced they will formally denounce the Tea Party as a racist group that is a dangerous threat to democracy. NAACP spokeswoman, Leila McDowell,stated that the Tea Party is “not just about higher taxes and limited government, but something that could evolve and become more dangerous”

Since the economic crisis and first stimulus package occurred under the previous president without any protest, I can’t help but share this widely shared opinion that the Tea Party is racist. Also, the extremely racist posters they hold up at their rallies, do not help to debunk this theory.  Bill Maher said it best in the clip from the previous blog that they are a “group of racist sore losers.”

Published in: on July 14, 2010 at 2:47 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Tea Party vs. Health Care Reform

Tea Party members, or “teabaggers” as they called themselves before they understood the double meaning, were wildly opposed to health care reform or “Obamacare.”  At this point, it just appeared that after the stimulus plans, they were opposed to anything that Obama would introduce.  It was during these anti-health reform rallies that the charge of socialism was thrown at Obama.  People began accusing Obama of constructing “death panels” where senior citizens would have to present themselves before a government panel, and the government would decided whether or not it was too costly to let them live. It’s hard to write that while keeping a straight face, shockingly, many people believed it.

The most annoying part of the anti-health reform movement is the other things these teabaggers should be protesting. Do they have any idea how much these endless wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are costing the taxpayers?  That the Pentagon receives a blank check to do this? These people probably don’t consider the cost of the detention centers and black sites. Do they know that we fund Israeli’s occupation of the Palestinian Territories, and produced the white phosphorus that was then dropped on schools? If they are mad about bailing out Wall Street, why don’t they protest the companies that accepted bailout money and then posted $3 BILLION dollar profits?  

The answer is simple, they can stomp their feet louder (and have the time to do so) than those who need to work 2-3 jobs just to feed their families and still live without healthcare. This is also why they oppose immigration. They wouldn’t win against the large corporations that outsource their labor, so they must go against those who have “stolen” their jobs instead of the men who sent their jobs elsewhere.

If you are not a lobbyist, you won’t see the change you want. They know they can’t beat AIG by standing outside and pouting, so they need to look at the people under them. They know that they cannot stop a recovery package from being passed because Wall Street has the resources to get the legislation they want passed. Therefore, the Tea Party must try to win against a weaker opponent, the sick and impoverished.  

Personally, I’d rather fund life than death.

Published in: on July 14, 2010 at 1:54 pm  Leave a Comment  

Does the Tea Party Represent the Mainstream?

Like most liberal Democrats, I am strongly opposed to the Tea Party Movement.  When tea party protests started occurring in my hometown, I thought it was a protest strictly confined to New York State and our unpopular governor David Paterson. At first, this protest movement excited me. I was thrilled that the people of Western New York were finally speaking out about the injustice of paying some of the highest state taxes in the entire country, and not seeing the results within our community. I soon read that these protests were popping up all over the country, and that they were protesting the agenda of President Obama.

Before looking at the facts and figures of the Tea Party and only relying on media coverage of this group, I automatically assumed that it was composed of lower middle class white men. I was shocked when I saw that according to a Gallup poll, Tea Party members fairly represent the population. While members are most likely to be male, they are less likely to come from a low-income background.  I was not shocked to see that Republicans and Independents make up nearly 92% of party members, and Democrats only 8%.

It will be interesting to see the Tea Party will split the Republican vote during mid-term elections since so many Republicans make up the Tea Party.

Published in: on July 14, 2010 at 1:06 pm  Leave a Comment  

Coffee Party Goals vs. Tea Party Patriots Mission Statement

I was looking for goals and core values on both official party websites and found the following:

Coffe Party Goals:

In general, the Coffee Party mission is to create an informed and involved citizenry. We aspire to create a community of people who care about facts, solutions, the sanctity of our democracy and one another. We continue to cultivate our values — civility, respect, personal responsibility and compassion — and integrate them into our actions, the Coffee Party methodology for social change.

And for the tea party:

Tea Party Patriots, Inc. as an organization believes in the Fiscal Responsibility, Constitutionally Limited Government, and Free Markets. […]. We hold that the United States is a republic conceived by its architects as a nation whose people were granted “unalienable rights” by our Creator. Chiefly among these are the rights to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” The Tea Party Patriots stand with our founders, as heirs to the republic, to claim our rights and duties which preserve their legacy and our own. We hold, as did the founders, that there exists an inherent benefit to our country when private property and prosperity are secured by natural law and the rights of the individual.

Sounds good, doesn’t it? The Coffee party focuses much more on commen sense and favors informed and involved citizens wishing to create a government which serves the people and not the economy. The Tea Party, however, bases all their beliefs and values on the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States and even supports a free market with less restrictions as you can see in the following quote:

Our current government’s interference distorts the free market and inhibits the pursuit of individual and economic liberty.

Seems like the financial crisis didn’t affect the Tea Party supporters at all if they even want to deregulate the economy further. After all it was the only-profit-counts ideology of the American banking sector which caused most of the banks and the enonomy to collapse.

Published in: on July 13, 2010 at 8:08 am  Leave a Comment  

Tea Party Vs. G20

While randomly looking at Glenn Beck’s website I came across an interesting video where Beck talks about how radical anarchist protesters are depicted in the New York Times. Beck critizes how much the Canadian government spent on the G20 security. Of course the all so friendly Tea Party protesters did not cause any trouble but the far left anarchists did. He quotes several passages from the New York Times, saying that the reports are trivializing the damage caused by the anarchist protesters, even critizing the police for being to harsh to the friendly demonstrators. To prove his point Beck shows us a merely three second video clip of a burning car and some hooded people fleeing from the police. There is no proof in the video that it actually shows footage of the recent G20 protests so we are just going to have to trust Glenn on this one (which we’ll gladly do of course). But still, how can a three second video clip be representative of a two day demonstration. Now I’m not saying that there were no violent excesses by several radicals during the protests, yet that is not a legitimate reason to condemn the New York Time’s coverage. Most of the protesters were  peacefully announcing their opinion and the small fraction of the violent protestors are used by Beck to denounce the whole left wing movement. It seems like Glenn forgot that there are probably just as much radical left activists as they are radical right activists and just because they did not show up at the G20 demonstration does not mean that they don’t exist.

[kyte.tv appKey=MarbachViewerEmbedded&uri=channels/338017&tbid=168707&p=1011&height=384&width=320]

Published in: on July 5, 2010 at 10:01 pm  Leave a Comment  

Tea Or Coffee?

The Tea Party is one of the most modern organisations in terms of using the latest technology. Its members comunicate with each other through networking sites such as Twitter, My Space and Facebook. Similarly, Annabel Park, a documentary film-maker, using facebook group established another group, which soon emerged as an organised party. On her facebook wall as an oposition to to conservative Tea Party she wrote:

“let’s start a coffee party . . . smoothie party. red bull party. anything but tea. geez. ooh how about cappuccino party? that would really piss ’em off bec it sounds elitist . . . let’s get together and drink cappuccino and have real political dialogue with substance and compassion.”

The Coffee Party, as it begun to be known as, uses the slogan “wake up and stand up.”  This movement is not as radical as the Tea Party. Many of its members were involved in the presidential campaign of Barrack Obama. What is more, in contrast to the Tea Party, the Coffee Party does not reject Obama’s reforms because, according to them, the federal government is not an enemy but it should meet the needs of all citizens. Thus, they encourage people to greater awareness of the situation in the country as well as involvement in politics. Thus, the Coffee Party, in comparison to the Tea Party, wants to have an impact on all politicians, not only on the Democrats.

Source: cnn.com, nytimes.com, coffeepartyusa.com, teapartypatriots.org

Published in: on June 28, 2010 at 10:37 pm  Comments (3)