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Politics => Vox Populi => Topic started by: michaelintp on April 14, 2010, 09:44:44 am

Title: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 14, 2010, 09:44:44 am
I wonder if this was reported on MSNBC?  These tactics are exactly what I am talking about, regarding the ugliness of what is transpiring today in politics.  Do anything, anything, anything, other than address the real issues. Do whatever you can to discredit "the enemy" by way of lying, cheating, misrepresenting, outright fraud, impersonation, whatever.  The end justifies the means.

Foes of tea party movement to infiltrate rallies

By VALERIE BAUMAN, Associated Press Mon Apr 12, 6:30 pm ET

ALBANY, N.Y. Opponents of the fiscally conservative tea party movement say they plan to infiltrate and dismantle the political group by trying to make its members appear to be racist, homophobic and moronic.

Jason Levin, creator of http://www.crashtheteaparty.org, said Monday the group has 65 leaders in major cities across the country who are trying to recruit members to infiltrate tea party events for April 15 tax filing day, when tea party groups across the country are planning to gather and protest high taxes.


I'm out of town right now, so have had the luxury of watching cable news (which I don't have at home). Been switching between Fox and MSNBC. It is absolutely insane. The networks are describing two very different worlds. When I go from one to another, I feel I am being transported between disparate parallel universes.

I've actually spent more time watching MSNBC that Fox, because I find it so bizarre. What interests me is the degree the commentary is snippy and disparaging, more focused on ad homonym attack and character assassination than addressing issues. For example, it was reported that McCain said something negative about Obama's nuclear conference, as sidetracking the American Public from the real issues - particularly involving Iran, North Korea, and ... and also the economy.  Agree or disagree (and of course they all disagreed), the idiot panelists (some from respectable "mainstream" newspapers) refused to address the substance of McCain's comments, and instead all start disparagingly psychoanalyzing him as an angry man, a bitter man, etc ...  It was absolutely asinine.  Not one touched on the substance of his comments. And I won't even go to how that network portrays Sarah Palin. Geeze! I feel I'm wading in a sea of condescending sh*t.

At any event, with the continued infiltrations of the Tea Party Rallies by Leftist impostors, no doubt the Media will have the opportunity to disseminate more photos of outlandish signs and videos of offensive conduct.  I wonder ... did MSNBC tell you about this?  (Fox did).  Or will the comrades there just happily carry on?

Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 14, 2010, 08:33:12 pm
My purposes in posting the above, by the way, was not to get into a debate over the Tea Party Protesters or John McCain or Sarah Palin. The purpose of this tidbit was twofold:

1.  Do any of you think it is fine, or do any of you find it disgusting, for Left-wing activists to pretend to be "Tea Party Protesters" with intentionally misspelled signs or offensive messages, to try to create fabricated material for the Media to vilify the Tea Party Movement?

2.  Did any of you even hear about this from MSNBC?  Because, during my time out of town, while in a hotel with cable, I sure didn't hear anything about it from MSNBC.  Hmmm ... I wonder why not?  Maybe I missed it.  Or maybe MSNBC chose not to mention it.   ;)

These are the questions that I'm curious about.  I think both of these questions bear on the issue of political honesty and integrity.  I really am interested in reactions to these two questions.

Well, I guess lucky for me, I'm going home tomorrow night.  This "monitoring" of the cable news media is way tooooooo time consuming. and I would way toooooo easily become addicted to it.  It is a trip, however, to have the chance to peek at it, a few times each year, when on business trips.  But these few peeks do reinforce why I chose not to get cable back in the 1980s when we moved to our present home. 
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Francisco on April 15, 2010, 09:11:46 am
Is this for real? LOL. What about dumbest plan ever.
Hey everybody I'm going to infiltrate the tea party to destroy it from inside and my first step is to tell everyone what I'm about to do. ::)
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 15, 2010, 09:56:44 am
Is this for real? LOL. What about dumbest plan ever.
Hey everybody I'm going to infiltrate the tea party to destroy it from inside and my first step is to tell everyone what I'm about to do. ::)

Ha ha, who was it who said that people on the Left are more intelligent and sophisticated than people on the Right?  One might want to re-think that stereotype, haha.  The point you make is pretty funny, I agree.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Emperorjones on April 18, 2010, 02:41:22 pm
Somehow I'm finding myself unable to summon the outrage or righteous indignation. I think it is more telling, and perhaps more disturbing, that FOX News has actively promoted and continues to promote the Tea Party movement. Of course this blatant support doesn't mean it skewers or slants its coverage, right? Same with a lot of conservative media. It's also funny to me that many conservatives will tell African Americans and others that they are suffering from victimology and to get over it, when conservatives can be some of the biggest whiners and paranoiacs out there.

With FOX as the number one cable news outlet and papers like the Wall Street Journal that don't seem to be going out of business anytime soon, how exactly is the media overwhelmingly liberal and conservative viewpoints not being heard? Not to mention other conservative publications like the Weekly Standard, papers like the Washington Times or the NY Post, talk radio, think tanks like the Heritage Foundation, etc., etc, so this is not conservative media? What about the Ann Coulter, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, and various other right wing tomes that top the New York Times (the dreaded NYT) best seller lists? These viewpoints are not reaching people?

There is a whole apparatus of right-wing institutions promoting right wing views. The word liberal has become so toxic that most Democrats in office won't even call themselves that anymore, yet somehow these liberals are running wild and controlling the media, academia, etc. And poor conservatives are being targeted and pilloried for their courageous stand for freedom and individual liberty and rights. Unless of course you're a Muslim, gay, and to a large extent a non-white person who doesn't hew to the conservative line, all the people who might not fit under the definition of a 'real' American.

This conservative victimology is all about playing on people (generally white) people's fears, of turning debate into an us v. them strategy to garner votes from the remnants of Nixon's "Silent Majority" or Reagan's "Reagan Democrats". The 'forgotten' white lower, working, and middle classes, the hard working Americans who have to 'pay' the price of integration, immigration, and whose culture and values are being 'assaulted' by homosexuality and multiculturalism.

You're asking for honesty like there is an equal playing field to begin with; when FOX News had been right-wing from jump. And you're equating the actions, the telegraphed actions, of a few people, with some real or alleged violent behavior and hate speech from people aligned with the Tea Party. It sounds like its nothing more than being overblown to give the Tea Party cover when one of their followers finally does go too far off the deep end. Then the conservative spinmeisters can point to this story and say, "See, it wasn't us, it was those liberal infiltrators." Without really exploring the root of this anger and admitting that some of it, not all, is racially inspired.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 18, 2010, 09:04:38 pm
So EmperorJones, do you believe that these tactics of infiltration are justified under the circumstances?
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Emperorjones on April 19, 2010, 02:53:25 am
So EmperorJones, do you believe that these tactics of infiltration are justified under the circumstances?

Michael,

Personally I could care less. I don't think this is a wide-spread issue or that it will warp the Tea Party's message. IMO, the Tea Party is being fueled already by a warped message and/or misdirected anger. I'm speculating that a significant number of Tea Party supporters were also "Birthers" who questioned President Obama's citizenship and there was a recent poll about some 20% of conservative leaning people who believed Obama was the Anti-Christ. And it is a good number of Tea Party supporters who declare Obama is a socialist, Hitler, a tyrant, a cult leader, etc., instead of debating the issues rationally and respectfully. Instead, some put on their Paul Revere hats and Betsy Ross dresses and declare they are 'patriots', which implies to me that anyone who doesn't agree with them, is not. And of course FOX News last year with their terrorist fist bump, their Obama-Osama 'mix up', calling Michelle Obama a 'baby mama', and harping on William Ayres, all have helped seed this kind of anger that can make wacky ideas sound plausible. And the more you try to debate or combat that wackiness, some people get defensive and burrow in like ticks.


Furthermore I think 'media bias' is a two-way street, but conservatives are the only ones, and skillfully let me add, that are turning this issue into something to rally their supporters. MSNBC trends left, big surprise. But they don't lie about it, unlike FOX which doesn't know the first thing about being 'fair and balanced'. CNN tries to be in the middle, IMO, or I can concede maybe left-of-center. But the idea that the conservatives are these little lambs being torn from pillar to post by a rabid liberal media is absurd. Conservative media is ascendant, and has been for at least the last 20 years. Liberal Air America has bitten the dust but unfortunately right wing radio is still blossoming. Conservative pundits/analysts have opinion columns in every newspaper in the country, if not having sway on the editorial boards or the owners of the paper, and there are straight up conservative newspapers, not to mention FOX News. Even 'ultra-liberal' MSNBC has Joe Scarborough on in the morning, with a weak 'liberal' co-host. And Pat Buchanan gets to pretty much say what he wants, with little push back, on that network.

Once again, liberals are so afraid to call themselves that they've taken to calling themselves progressives. That's how much the right has won the message war since the 70s-80s. And with Glenn Beck now going whole hog against progressivism, the liberals will probably search for a new name sometime soon.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Reginald Hudlin on April 19, 2010, 06:36:11 am
I agree with Francisco's comment that not only is this "plan" dumb, I don't see how it is executable.  How do you make fun of the Tea Party?  How do you make them appear more outrageous or more absurd than they are? 

But to answer your second question, I have not heard of this story anywhere but here. And I don't think it's because of some vast left wing media conspiracy. 
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Curtis Metcalf on April 19, 2010, 07:01:29 am
So EmperorJones, do you believe that these tactics of infiltration are justified under the circumstances?

Michael,

Personally I could care less. I don't think this is a wide-spread issue or that it will warp the Tea Party's message. IMO, the Tea Party is being fueled already by a warped message and/or misdirected anger. I'm speculating that a significant number of Tea Party supporters were also "Birthers" who questioned President Obama's citizenship and there was a recent poll about some 20% of conservative leaning people who believed Obama was the Anti-Christ. And it is a good number of Tea Party supporters who declare Obama is a socialist, Hitler, a tyrant, a cult leader, etc., instead of debating the issues rationally and respectfully. Instead, some put on their Paul Revere hats and Betsy Ross dresses and declare they are 'patriots', which implies to me that anyone who doesn't agree with them, is not. And of course FOX News last year with their terrorist fist bump, their Obama-Osama 'mix up', calling Michelle Obama a 'baby mama', and harping on William Ayres, all have helped seed this kind of anger that can make wacky ideas sound plausible. And the more you try to debate or combat that wackiness, some people get defensive and burrow in like ticks.


Furthermore I think 'media bias' is a two-way street, but conservatives are the only ones, and skillfully let me add, that are turning this issue into something to rally their supporters. MSNBC trends left, big surprise. But they don't lie about it, unlike FOX which doesn't know the first thing about being 'fair and balanced'. CNN tries to be in the middle, IMO, or I can concede maybe left-of-center. But the idea that the conservatives are these little lambs being torn from pillar to post by a rabid liberal media is absurd. Conservative media is ascendant, and has been for at least the last 20 years. Liberal Air America has bitten the dust but unfortunately right wing radio is still blossoming. Conservative pundits/analysts have opinion columns in every newspaper in the country, if not having sway on the editorial boards or the owners of the paper, and there are straight up conservative newspapers, not to mention FOX News. Even 'ultra-liberal' MSNBC has Joe Scarborough on in the morning, with a weak 'liberal' co-host. And Pat Buchanan gets to pretty much say what he wants, with little push back, on that network.

Once again, liberals are so afraid to call themselves that they've taken to calling themselves progressives. That's how much the right has won the message war since the 70s-80s. And with Glenn Beck now going whole hog against progressivism, the liberals will probably search for a new name sometime soon.

Great post, EJ.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 19, 2010, 07:25:43 am
EmperorJones, thanks for your thoughts. If I am understanding you correctly, you could care less if Left-wingers infiltrate Tea Party Rallies to impersonate Tea Party Protesters, in order to create offensive incidents. Clearly some Progressive activists do think it is a fine tactic.

Also, the use of the label "Progressive" is used by folk who are more to the Left of Liberals. Progressives mocked Liberals in the 1960s. They bashed men like LBJ and Hubert Humphrey. So I don't think you can point the finger at Conservatives for turning "Liberal" into a term of disparagement. That honor goes to the folk on the Left as much as it goes to folk on the Right.

On the Media point:  I believe you overstate the "power" of Conservatives in the Mainstream Media. During the last election, even SNL mocked the Mainstream Media for its fawning over Barack Obama. Now, are you saying that Saturday Night Live is also hotbed of Conservative Radicalism?  Or did the writers at SNL have a point?  

But, also, it may be (no doubt is) that when I watch MSNBC (which clearly chose not report the "Leftist infiltration of Tea Party Rallies" story, given their ideological bias) the behavior of the anchors strikes me as absurd. This may be a sensitivity to people expressing points of view that one disagrees with, in the same way that when a "Progressive" watches Fox News, they have a similar reaction. Though when I was switching between the two stations, it sure seemed to me that more "news stories" were being covered by Fox, while more outright opinion/commentary was being offered on MSNBC.  May have just been a fluke, and while part of it may have been my subjective perception, my own "bias" doesn't explain all of it. Did strike me as odd when, on the morning MSNBC news show, the host and guests (all journalists) started psychoanalyzing John McCain as "angry" and "bitter," instead of addressing the substance of his criticism of the nuclear summet.

Reginald, depending on what news sources you regularly rely on, I am not surprised that you had not heard of this story. As I say, MSNBC clearly chose not to run it. Which, given the agenda of that network, is not surprising. Choosing not to cover certain stories, as well as choosing to cover others, is one way that the Media exercise its bias.

Reginald, while I understand you think the infiltration is pointless, are you troubled by it as a tactic?  I think I could guess your answer, but I don't wish to speak for you.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Reginald Hudlin on April 19, 2010, 08:33:29 am
I actually don't watch MSNBC as much as you think.  I have to take a break from all the news cycles regardless of source because at the end of the day, IT'S ALL SHOW BUSINESS no matter what end of the political spectrum you're on.  Their job is to create enough crisis that you keep watching, which skews the news that they are reporting.  CNN, Fox, MSNBC are all guilty of this.  It's as if the Weather Channel said "it's a disaster outside!  Stay in and KEEP WATCHING!".

As for this "infiltration" thing, it's so minor and bush league I can't muster up enough energy to care about it.  If someone was flying a plane into the RNC that would be one thing, or if armed men were standing around threatening to kill Michael Steele, or people were spitting on Republican members of Congress, I guess I would care more. 
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Battle on April 19, 2010, 09:26:59 am
I agree with Francisco's comment that not only is this "plan" dumb, I don't see how it is executable.  How do you make fun of the Tea Party?  How do you make them appear more outrageous or more absurd than they are?  




(http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/hh196/LaseerbeakReformatted/icetea.jpg)
When stuck with lemons, make lemonade...

When stuck with the tea party, make Ice Tea.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 20, 2010, 07:17:58 am
As for this "infiltration" thing, it's so minor and bush league I can't muster up enough energy to care about it.  If someone was flying a plane into the RNC that would be one thing, or if armed men were standing around threatening to kill Michael Steele, or people were spitting on Republican members of Congress, I guess I would care more. 

Hmmm ... not the answer I would have expected. I wasn't really asking you about the depth of your emotion on the topic, just whether or not you condemn such conduct. Sounds like, while you think such tactics are bush league, you don't really care, and maybe even give the perpetrators a pass.  No matter how dishonest their conduct is. I understand that some folk believe that their goals are so noble that any means used to realize them are justified.  But really ... do you actually refuse to condemn folk who engage in that kind of conduct, impersonating their opponents to create Media incidents?
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Vic Vega on April 20, 2010, 07:44:44 am
How many Tea Party rallies were there?

Assuming 100 man rallies at every city/town (and that's what the New York rally looked like to me-I've seen bigger student rallies and union strikes) you'd have to have to send nearly your entire 65 man crew to make a visible dent in any one of them. 

You would have to be damn near retarded to think that that would do any good. And considering the high risk of personal injury, you would have to be worse than retarded to carry it out.

This has hoax written all over it.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Reginald Hudlin on April 20, 2010, 09:53:48 am
I don't get your point, Mike.  Exactly what were these protestors doing or saying to make the Tea Party people look stupid? 
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Emperorjones on April 20, 2010, 05:58:05 pm
Michael,

I agree with RH and Fransisco in the sense that there is little any liberal infiltrators can do to make the antics of the Tea Party more absurd. As I said previously I think the story is overblown and is a deflection tactic to take attention away from some of the behavior Tea Party, or likely supporters have done or will do in the future. Long before this story, right wingers were crashing health care town halls and turning them into spectacles. Of course when white males get angry they are merely being patriots and the anger has to have a legitimate cause. If you're black or brown, then you're a thug or have a chip on your shoulder.

As for the usage of the terms progressive or liberal, I don't agree with you. I know that the term progressive has been used at least since the turn of the 20th century, and even Teddy Roosevelt ran on a Progressive Bull Moose platform in 1912.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progressive_movement

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bull_Moose_Party

The modern liberalism I assume you are talking it emerged more during the New Deal era and was at its height from the 1930s-1960s. Perhaps the progressivism you are referring to is what some called the New Left. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Left

Today, I think more liberals are calling themselves progressives because the GOP has effectively turned liberalism into a dirty word. I don't think it was merely the clash of the Old v. New Left. There has been a relentless assault on liberalism at least since the Nixon Administration and the Great Society programs since Reagan. The conservatives used a network of think tanks, corporate funding, media, churches, and to be fair electoral victories under girded by time tested appeals to white resentment and solidarity to shift the political culture in this country. With each electoral victory it made the Democratic party and its ideals seem even more passe. So, you had Bill Clinton and others counter with the ,moderate Democratic Leadership Council. I would argue that Jimmy Carter was something of an antecedent to Clinton and the DLC, in terms of being a bit more in the center than some of the Dems he had to deal with in Congress, like Ted Kennedy. With the DLC, it was all about winning and finding ways to moderate the ideals and ideas of the Democrats. To me, they tacitly accepted the GOP contention that liberalism was no longer viable and then tried to concoct ways to dance around what they really were, which made them look weak and/or phony and turned off voters even more. Only the most skillful of dancers like Bill Clinton could get elected. More liberal candidates like McGovern and Mondale got completely trounced because their brand of liberalism had been effectively de-legitimized and the less skillful moderates like Carter, Dukakis, Gore, and Kerry all took L's as well because why go for a pale, mushy imitation when you can have a bonafide conservative?

To be honest, I just think you can't see the power of the conservative media because it conforms to your views. As I've said before, look at the bestselling books, the radio programs that have millions of listeners each day, FOX News, the op-ed columns, the fact that even MSNBC and CNN have conservative commentators who don't roll over like FOX's 'liberals' do. SNL was supporting Hillary Clinton. And they were going with her contention that she wasn't getting a fair shake in the media and Obama was getting an easy ride.

Tina Fey pretty much declared her support for Hillary. I remember when she proclaimed "Bitch is the new Black" during a segment on the show. To which Tracy Morgan later replied, "Bitch might be the new Black, but Black is the new President, Bitch." I also think SNL and a lot of the 'liberal' media pretty much caved into conservative complaints that they were drinking Obama's 'kool aid' or 'were in the tank' for him and so decided to be 'fair' by trying to find something to criticize him about. And they did criticize him. I read countless articles from 'liberal' papers talking about his lack of substance during the debates, and totally ignored the plans and ideas he talked about in the debates. Hillary explained herself better, she was more concise, but Obama just wasn't sitting there blinking his eyes. If anything this shows that 'liberal' journalists are at least concerned with the appearance of impartiality.

I think you're also ignoring the mostly glowing coverage FOX News gave to President Bush, Dick Cheney, and now Sarah Palin. How much were they challenged or taken to the carpet in any FOX interview? Not like when that dude Brett Bart? recently barely let President Obama get a word in edgewise. I think right wingers are hot because people weren't buying the product they kept trying to sell, so they accuse liberals of doing a lot of the same things they did with Bush.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 20, 2010, 11:07:34 pm
I don't get your point, Mike.  Exactly what were these protesters doing or saying to make the Tea Party people look stupid? 

My question to you was whether you find it objectionable that Left-wing opponents of the Tea Party Movement would attend rallies pretending to be Tea Party Protesters, bringing misspelled or offensive signs, racist signs, yelling racist slurs and comments, making racist or offensive statements to representatives of the Media, and engaging in similar activity to convey the impression that Tea Party Protesters as "racist, homophobic, and moronic."

Are these Progressive Activists "bush league" for even considering this tactic, or "bush league" only because they were outed by not being sufficiently discrete in their implementation?

Also, it is worth noting that 65 people could accomplish a great deal, spread out in different major venues where the Media was sure to be present.  After all, in the incident in DC with the spitting and slurs, how many people actually spat and yelled comments?  A handful at most.

As to whether this was I hoax, I did an Internet search and found no indication that it was one.  Were it a hoax, someone on the Internet or in the Media would have been quick to disclose that fact.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Reginald Hudlin on April 20, 2010, 11:51:36 pm
I can't even understand what these guys were supposed to be doing, because if their goal was to make tea baggers look intolerant and stupid that would be gilding the lily.  So I guess my overwhelming reaction is either story is not real, or if it is real these guys are morons.  I know you keep fishing around for a "denouncing", but I can't even understand what they are doing enough to form an opinion.  That's why I keep asking you what did they do?  I mean literally, what did they do?  Did they have signs and t-shirts comparing the President of the United States to Curious George?  Because T-baggers have been doing stuff like that since the before the election.  Are these guys the ones responsible for all the mispelled signs brandished in Tea Party crowds?  Or all those done by actual tea party members?
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Emperorjones on April 21, 2010, 02:38:53 am
Michael,

I don't agree with the idea of infiltration though I do support having strong counter protests and demonstrations. I think progressives/liberals, whatever, need to stand up for what they believe and let the right wingers know that it's their country too and that we are all patriots. But once again, I think conservatives are using this story to excuse the real actions or words of authentic Tea Party activists. So 65 people are supposed to spread all over the country and attend all of these rallies? What about the earlier rallies, like RH said? What about during the Palin-McCain campaign? Did the Democrats seed people among those rallies to call Obama socialist, communist, or Muslim? Did they also create the birther movement too?

Another issue I have with some conservatives is they talk about personal responsibility when it comes to blacks especially, but they are never willing to accept personal responsibility for their own actions. There are racist and homophobes in the Tea Party movement. Not all Tea Party activists or supporters are racist or homophobic, but are you telling me that there are none period, unless they are these liberal infiltrators?
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 22, 2010, 05:54:25 am
Michael,
I don't agree with the idea of infiltration though I do support having strong counter protests and demonstrations. ...


I'm glad to hear the expression of your principled statement.  As an American, you also have the right to express your point of view in a public forum.  Of course, this does not rise to the level of attempting to create confrontational incidents in an effort to effectively censor the right of others to speak though the "heckler's veto" (as we have seen on some college campuses). I've heard of incidents where counter-protesters have tried to provoke incidents, and the Tea Partiers just smiled at them and applauded, celebrating the counter-protesters' right under the First Amendment to express a contrary point of view. 

As to taking personal responsibility, a concept that is applied to ALL people, I don't think anyone is saying there are no racists involved in the Tea Party Movement, any more than I would expect a person of the Left to claim there are no bigots involved with the "Progressive" Movement. (Well, I might expect some on the Left to claim this, actually, given the way some on the Left view reality and whitewash themselves, but they would be wrong). What is more relevant, however, is to get a sense of what really happens at Tea Party rallies, not from a few photos spread over the internet (often repeated again and again) of an offensive sign here and there, or offensive conduct by a handful of people, but by the behavior of the vast majority of those who are attending these rallies. Of course I, and other principled Conservatives, condemn racism and bigotry.

I strongly urge you to read the article on the "Black Tea Partier" thread, written by the guy from CNN who has been covering Tea Party Rallies in several cities as part of the embedded team of journalists: Reporter's notebook: What really happens at Tea Party rallies By Shannon Travis, CNN Political Producer.  What he has discovered is something very different from the grossly distorted picture painted by Reginald here and by others in the Media and on the Internet. 

In my view, the broad brush attempt to demonize the Tea Party Movement as "racist" is nothing but the Left's lame-ass attempt to intimidate and discredit the opposition by playing the race card.  It is a tactic that has had some success, from time to time, in other contexts, but I really don't think it will work this time.  Because under no circumstances would it NOT be played in response to Conservatives opposing the Administration's policies. I think a lot of people are getting sick of it, because it is a gross distortion. A lotta people would rather hear the opponents respond to the substantive issues raised by the Tea Partiers.  I understand that many on the Left desperately want the Tea Party Movement to be a racist movement, but, sadly for them, it is in fact not.  Again, see the CNN article on the other thread: http://hudlinentertainment.com/smf/index.php?topic=5817.75

As to the discrediting of "Liberals" and the abandonment of that label, of course Conservatives also expressed criticism of Liberals.  But I was there in the 1960s and 1970s, and I can tell you that the folk I knew back then, who called themselves "Progressive" were of the New Left, very very Left-wing in terms of the economics and geopolitics that they embraced.  They were not members of Teddy Roosevelt's Bull Moose Party, haha. Indeed, in a couple of instances, their parents had been active Communist Party members. The label "Progressive" was donned by many of them because it frankly sold better than "Communist" or "Socialist" given the climate in the the country at that time. At the time they too were very outspoken in demeaning "Liberals" whom they viewed as members of the Establishment. So the attacks against "Liberals" were coming from both the Left and the Right. No wonder the "Liberals" felt squeezed and started adopting the "Progressive" label as well. Still, it is fair to say that the New Left Progressives, as they have grown up, have played an increasingly active role in the Democratic Party.

As to Media bias, everyone runs their studies to show that the Media is biased against them.  We've had those conversations in the past on the Forum. 
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Emperorjones on April 24, 2010, 08:04:52 am
Michael,

It was not liberal 'infiltrators' who where shouting down Congresspeople at town hall hearings last summer. It was right wing people, probably allied with or supportive of the Tea Party movement. They were using this heckler's veto and strong arm tactics, which you don't seem all that concerned with, yet you summon outrage about this infiltration scheme that, to my knowledge, hasn't gained much traction. Has any of these infiltrators even done anything yet or been exposed? Once again, you didn't have an answer about the inflammatory signs and behavior from the Tea Partiers months before this story came to light.

I checked out the CNN article and it even pointed out that there were a 'few' signs that 'could be seen as' offensive to African Americans. Now this is coming from an article that is trying to paint a different picture of the Tea Party. Bang up job it did.

Living in the DC area, I've encountered quite a few Tea Party people on the Metro, particularly during their first big rally late last year. The ones I met were personally gracious and respectful-perhaps they thought I was going to rob them-and I was in turn respectful to them. But out on the Mall that day, I saw some had inflammatory signs (not racially offensive, but the kind using heated rhetoric) as they walked around the Mall from the Capitol. I didn't see the rally so I don't know what the mood of that was like.

Beyond that, I think you wish us to believe that the Tea Party is a multi-racial, harmonious movement, which I don't believe. The leadership is overwhelmingly white, and the ideology is right wing. So what you find a few black people to co-sign something. There have always been black people co-signing things that might be harmful to the larger black community. There are quite a few noted black conservatives but can I honestly say they have significant sway in the black community? No, they don't. Just like the few black Tea Party people out there. In fact, they are probably mostly one and the same.

As I've said before I think race does play a role in the Tea Party. I think it is being fueled by white male anger and resentment, but I don't think race is the sole thing driving the Tea Party. However, Obama's race turn actions a Tea Party sympathizer might disagree with into something sinister and anti-American. I did some volunteer work for a GOP congressional office back in 2000 and I took a call or two calling Hillary and Bill socialists. So that charge has been out there, but even in the 90s that kind of talk and thinking was on the right wing fringe. But when Obama came into office the fringe started becoming mainstream and responsible GOP leaders, bereft of ideas and vision, decided to go with the flow instead of challenging the anger and resentment into something less toxic.

Some conservatives had issues with Bush's bank bailout, but there wasn't a massive, uprising against it. Some conservatives just didn't vote for McCain. Now, with Obama in office there is this urgency to take 'our' country back. And there was the hue and cry about Obama when he wanted to talk to school children. What is he going to say? Is he going to indoctrinate 'our' children? Or that Obama isn't a US citizen or that he's the Anti-Christ. Or GOP officials referring to Michelle Obama as a monkey. Or bloggers making racial comments about the Obama children during a trip they took to Italy. None of this has to do with race? And fear of the "Other" plays no role in the hardened feelings, the lack of trust and respect some Tea Partiers feel for the President?

The GOP has actively and successfully tarred the liberal label. I've watched a lot of election coverage over the years where Republicans will hurl the label like an epithet and Democrats will dance around it. Yet, Republicans have no problem telling the world they are conservatives. When is the last time you saw liberal beneath a Democrats name in a commercial or on a billboard? You shouldn't be denying this, you should be happy that the success of this campaign. It's helped shift this nation to the right. In 1964, Americans overwhelmingly rejected the Goldwater vision of America that Reagan helped to bring into fruition in 1980, roughly a generation later. I think the GOP is scared as hell that Obama has the potential to shift the country in the other direction and they are willing to let loose or play with some of our national demons in order to prevent it.

IMO, you are willfully oblivious to just about anything right wingers do. You would rather point to a proposed infiltration plan than the real language and actions thus far of the Tea Party. How could this proposed plan even work if there wasn't already smoke there for the infiltrators to try to turn into a fire? If the Tea Party was as harmonious and inclusive as I think you believe, these disruptive infiltrators wouldn't be able to blend it all. It would be like me at a Klan rally. I'm going to stick out.

You also talk about media bias as if there are no conservative outlets out there. It's like your in full ideological mode and can't come up for air or even honestly consider the other side. Some people aren't hurling around the racist charge at the Tea Party because it will score political points, some people see echoes of lynch mobs, or hear the echoes of 1963 George Wallace, and they don't want to go back there. The obtuseness of many in the Tea Party to this shows how little they have been able to look beyond their own rage, their own self-interests. I think many see this as a zero sum game, any gain for a non-white is a loss for them. They don't see that everyone is hurting right now or that all cultures and religions have value, not just white American culture(s) and Christianity. I think you're assuming that just because you might not have negative intent or malice, that your fellow travelers are the same way. That's not always the case.

You have yet to focus on the actions and behavior of the Tea Party members itself. You instinctively hit back about liberals this or liberals that. Once again, not willing to address some of the negative behavior or actions of the Tea Parties and their supporters. Where's the personal responsibility?
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Reginald Hudlin on April 25, 2010, 09:04:42 am
Michael, you keep asking about this "infiltrator" story, but you still haven't said what they did. 
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 25, 2010, 09:20:54 am
Michael, you keep asking about this "infiltrator" story, but you still haven't said what they did. 

I know what one group was planning to do, and may have done to some extent.  I have already described the tactics, above.  I don't know what others may have done, but this one group of Lefties is not the only one motivated to engage in those sorts of tactics to serve their ideological ends.  My purpose in raising the matter was not to suggest that all or even most outright racist signs or conduct engaged in by a very very very small minority at the Tea Party rallies are Leftist infiltrators.  A few may have been, but most (of those few folk) were undoubtedly not.  My point in posting the original article, from the AP (not some right-wing source) was to just find out if members of the forum thought such tactics to be justified under the circumstances of the present ideological "struggle," or whether they find such conduct to be offensive and dishonest.  Because it is clear that this was NOT a hoax. 

Reginald, I honestly found your response to be rather evasive. I still don't clearly know what you think about such plans, whether or not implemented, or whether or not detected if to some extent implemented by this group or others.  Other than that you think them lame (though part of their "lameness" was that they got caught and how they got caught).  Which is not the same thing as saying you believe such conduct to be right or wrong.  One can view a tactic to be unnecessary, while not thinking it wrong in principle.  That was why I specifically asked you for your judgement of that aspect of the matter.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 25, 2010, 09:22:47 am
Emperorjones, my purpose in raising the "infiltrator" matter, something not made up by the Right, but reported by AP as well as other Media outlets, was to get a sense what folks on the forum think about such tactics.

As to the Town Hall Meetings you mention: The purpose of a town hall meeting is for people to express their viewpoints and ask hard questions and respond negatively if the answer is bullsh*t.  They are not just PR opportunities for Members of Congress.  By the same token, real journalistic interviews of politicians are not a series of softball questions followed by opportunities for the politician to rattle off talking points and evasive answers.  Real journalists keep asking the question, or keep the politician on topic, when the politician is being evasive.  This goes for all politicians, including the President.

If at all, I will discuss the article written by CNN Political Producer Shannon Travis on the other thread, where I posted that article.  Though some reference to it will no doubt come out here.

You point out that the Tea Party Protesters you met on the Metro were, in fact, "personally gracious and respectful."  I appreciate your honestly in pointing that out. Why can't you just leave it at that?  Why must you throw in "perhaps they thought I was going to rob them."  This reveals exactly the attitude that Travis is talking about -- the adherence to prejudiced stereotypes.

The Tea Party Movement does have members of all races participate, though the fact that black participation is smaller than that in the general population only establishes that the overwhelming number of African-Americans support Obama.  Which is not surprising, given that he is the first black President of the United States.  On top of that, black Conservatives are ostracized, vilified, called vile names, by many black activists and so-called "black leaders," as you well know, making it an act of courage for them to participate in Tea Party Rallies (and perhaps discouraging some from participating; of course most white Conservatives don't actually participate in the rallies either, because it is just hard to get busy people to go to public rallies).  Look at the snapshots taken at the rally in L.A. that my son attended, as an example.

I find it amusing that whenever people on the Left express strong opinions, they are described as "passionate" or "outraged" or "expressing solidarity" etc ... but whenever Conservatives express strong opinions, the Media simply describes them as "angry."  A line you parrot here.  The line MSNBC parroted about John McCain, that he was an "angry man, a bitter man."  Why angry?  All because he expressed criticism of President Obama's nuclear summit.  "Angry."  Might this reflect bias in the Mainstream Media?

I've never denied that some involved with the Tea Party movement might in part be motivated by race.  But not most. Were Obama doing the same things, but were he white, I believe we would see the outgrowth of a grassroots movement like the Tea Party Movement. Obama's election proved the value of a strong grassroots movement.  The Tea Party Movement is not a movement focused on race.  It is not, as Keith Olberman describes it, the "Tea Klux Klan."  It is focused on the size and self-destructive unprecedented growth of Government, at the national, state, and local levels, that augers disastrous consequences in the future for our nation.  Growth advocated by Barack Obama, as a man of the Left, who very much wishes to push America in that direction of greater government economic domination.  It is not fueled by "white male anger" but rather by serious concern, indeed fear, that our country is being economically destroyed, with unsustainable mountains of debt and irremediable deficits, that over the long term will hamper economic development and military preparedness. That the lives of our children and their children will be far far worse off as a result, and that the world will be a far worse place as a result.  I believe all these concerns are well founded.

As to your comments directed at me:  I have objected to any expressions of racism.  Now, some comments or signs that are critical of Obama or are presented as parody, may be "offensive" to some African-Americans, even though they are no more offensive than similar portrayals of George W. Bush by the Left at their rallies, but some African-Americans may take special offense because they so strongly support Barack Obama and may be particularly sensitive because he is black.  That said, statements or signs that contain clear racial slurs are outright wrong.  I cannot state that more clearly.  You must realize, however, that the Tea Party Movement is a grassroots movement and that most in that movement strongly support the First Amendment and the Constitution as a whole.  Thus, my understanding is that people prepare their own signs.  On a Tea Party websight that suggests text of signs, I saw no reference to race whatsoever. All the references were to Obamacare, Socialism, the Size of Government, etc.  But some folk make up their own text, and a minute fraction may be objectionable by any standard. We don't know if anything has been said to someone with a really stupid-ass sign, by someone else at a rally (but be that as it may, my understanding is that there is no "central authority" that is empowered to censor signs at these rallies). Those few truly offensive signs are the ones that are replayed and redisplayed over and over and over again on the Internet, creating false impressions that Shannon Travis says are reinforcing prejudiced stereotypes against the vast majority of folk who participate in Tea Party Rallies (and for that matter, against Conservatives as a whole).  Your comments, and insistent negative spin, reflect this prejudice as well.  Which, I believe is, for all on the Left, in part politically motivated.  A clear tactic to divert people from the real issues, in an attempt to marginalize the vast majority of folk who are raising legitimate concerns at these rallies.  

I'm still waiting for folk on the Left to take responsibility for their conduct over the past decade, up to the present time. Haha, well, I'm really not.  ;)
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Reginald Hudlin on April 26, 2010, 12:38:42 am
Michael, I've stated what I think pretty clearly, considering I don't know who these people are or what they did.  I keep asking you, and you don't know what they've done either.  Or if they did anything.  In the absence of actual facts to talk about, my interest wavers.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 26, 2010, 07:28:55 am
Yes Reginald, I understand that if someone is caught conspiring to commit murder it is not as interesting as if they actually succeeded in committing murder.  However, I don't think most folk would have a problem making the simple statement that they find murder to be objectionable.  I don't think you would be so hesitant in that context to pass a moral judgement.

The facts here are (at a minimum) that a group of Progressives had infiltrated Tea Party Rallies, passing themselves off as Right Wing Extremists, to gather intelligence. They planned (if to some extent not done already) to bring misspelled signs, racist signs, offensive signs, and when the Media appeared, to loudly regurgitate racist slurs and the like, to create Media incidents that would be recorded and rebroadcast over and over again and to be displayed over and over again on the Internet.

Morally objectionable, or not?

I say the facts as stated above are at a minimum, for we don't know to what extent some of the co-conspirators already engaged in this conduct, or whether similar, more discrete Leftists, already have done so. I'm not raising this for the purpose of whitewashing any racists who are involved in the Tea Party Movement.  I am raising this to find out if you, and others on the forum, find these kind of tactics to be immoral or, and a minimum, dishonest and objectionable.  Or, on the other hand, do you believe that all tactics, including these, are fine in the war of politics?

Why in the world are you having such difficulty answering the question?  It is a "yes, objectionable" or "no, not objectionable."
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Francisco on April 26, 2010, 07:45:44 am
I get what you're saying Michael. From now one every time a tea partier does something wrong we would chalk it down as a left winger infiltrator.  ::)
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 26, 2010, 08:45:31 am
I get what you're saying Michael. From now one every time a tea partier does something wrong we would chalk it down as a left winger infiltrator.  ::)

Did you even read what I wrote to Reginald in the post immediately prior to yours?  Why is the question I am asking so hard to answer?
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Curtis Metcalf on April 26, 2010, 08:58:06 am
I get what you're saying Michael. From now one every time a tea partier does something wrong we would chalk it down as a left winger infiltrator.  ::)


Did you even read what I wrote to Reginald in the post immediately prior to yours?  Why is the question I am asking so hard to answer?


Well, it could be that folks don't accept the underlying assumptions of your question or the manner in which you have framed it and are thus reluctant to participate. It does strike me as a potentially loaded question (http://www.fallacyfiles.org/loadques.html) (e.g. "When did you stop beating your wife?). Some may be distrustful of your motives for asking such a question.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: moor on April 26, 2010, 09:29:11 am
I don't get this question - if youre asking someone if they would find it morally abrasive to engage in dishonesty for some fuzzy political goal, I'd gather  9 out of 10 people would agree.

Infiltrating a political party just to spread or disseminate slanderous and libelous subject matter about its members would/should strike anyone as "wrong". 

Is it any more wrong than walking into the office of a local community group with a hidden camcorder and essentially committing repeated instances of morally repugnant behaviour until eventually catching/entrapping a decidely minute sampling of employees in providing unethical advice?

Or would I be comparing apples to oranges?
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 26, 2010, 11:29:28 am
Curtis, there is no nefarious intent underlying my question.  My question is not a "loaded question" in the least. It is a very straightforward question.  I've framed the facts accurately, based on the news story.  Once answered, my intent was not to then go "Ah-haa, gotcha, then X."  

Are people on the Forum so terrified of agreeing with michaelintp on anything, for fear that they will be tainted forever, that whenever I pose a question they'll do anything they can to evade responding or not respond at all?  Anything, to avoid the taint of agreeing with michaelintp! :o  (Hahahahahaha!).  

I am just sincerely curious what the view of Forum members is on this kind of tactic.  Because the truth is, from my past experience working with some very extreme Leftists on some issues (yes, we did work hand in hand on some issues), I am certain that some of them would have no moral reservations in posing as Conservatives and creating phony racist incidents for the Media, if they deemed that doing so would serve their cause. For them, I know, the end justifies the means. On the other hand, like you, I would assume that most folk, including most folk on the Forum, do find this tactic objectionable. That is the response I expected, from you and others on the Forum, including Reginald Hudlin, and with one exception (Emperorjones), I did not get.  Emperorjones exemplified the kind of principled approach that I applaud, to honesty express his counter-views, clearly revealing who he is and what he stands for. Not pretending be a member of a group that he is not, in order create (as an impostor) racial incidents for the Media or (by acting as an impostor) portraying his opponents as retards for the Media.

Moor, as to the ACORN situation, the actors did not pretend to be ACORN workers or activists, and then (for the Media) proclaim that as ACORN representatives their goal is to assist in illegal prostitution, child prostitute smuggling, and the like. That would be the precise parallel to what we are talking about here.  Instead, they just acted out a hypothetical question to see how the actual ACORN workers would respond, and the ACORN workers spoke for themselves.  The workers could have just as easily said, "Get your ass out of here."
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: Emperorjones on April 26, 2010, 03:59:14 pm
Michael,

Let me say something about black conservatives. To be respected, you've got to give respect, and that's something that many black conservatives have not done in regards to the black community. Supported by white right wing institutions, be it the Heritage Foundation, Manhattan Institute, newspapers, FOX News, or other right wing organs many black conservatives lambaste the black community largely for the benefit of their white patrons instead of honestly trying to build bridges in the black community or using conservative solutions to address continuing community problems. Browbeating the group you say you want to convince to join your side is not the best approach.

So, what you call vilification, I call telling it like it is. Don't get me wrong, many liberal blacks are also supported by white patrons too, but at least the Democratic party has made symbolic gestures and thrown the occasional policy bone in the black community's direction. They have made an effort to at least speak the language of the community, if not fully understand its heart, respect its mind, or acknowledge, and value its soul. What has the GOP done, or the black conservatives, in particular, to garner the black vote? Merely called the GOP the party of Lincoln and that's that. They don't even talk about enterprise zones anymore, their one major urban initiative that seemed at least heartfelt though its effectiveness was doubtful. To be honest, I don't think a majority of white GOP politicos want black votes. They've had too much success playing of white fears about black people to really want black votes. Almost any attempt at outreach is to allay the concerns of some white independents about the GOP's specious racial past.

A few years ago I would've contended that the GOP would also feel Latino voters were more desired than black votes, because they could still use a modified Southern Strategy with Latinos to keep them separated from blacks, but with this hue and cry about immigration, I'm not sure that's the case anymore. Well, with the moderate, corporate side of the GOP I could see more interest in securing Latino votes because they are thinking long term. But the GOP moderates are receding into the background and allowing the louder, angrier, nativists among the GOP to emerge.

It's funny that many black conservatives and their white allies will say these people are being victims for being 'independent' and 'bold' bu turn a blind eye to any talk about the root causes of poverty or the idea that racism didn't end in 1965. The only black people who are victims are black conservatives. And for many white right wingers, IMO, the only true victims today are white folks. Now some might say its white working class folks, but I believe a lot of the GOP elite believe the white middle class and the white elite are the true victims. The white poor and working class are just chess pieces they move on a board.

And now with McConnell and Barbour and the Confederate veterans issue, it just shows how tone deaf the GOP continues to be regarding black people, and how some appear to be gleeful in dismissing black people-either their history or their concerns. Black support is strong for Obama because he is the first black president, but also because of his campaign positions, and the historical relationship the Democratic party has developed with the black community since the 1960s. Despite what Rush Limbaugh and others infer, blacks aren't mindless drones who vote based on race alone. Douglass Wilder, Carol Moseley Braun, and Al Sharpton didn't get much black support in the Democratic primaries at all, and black people didn't bolt from the party when Jesse Jackson was passed over even for a VP nod in 84 and more importantly in 88. And Alan Keyes probably got zero to negative black support during his presidential runs. Who Obama was, what he represented, and what he seems to embody, inspired many African Americans to support him in record numbers. But they also gave strong support to Kerry, Gore, and Clinton before Obama.

I find it funny that some whites can easily see how blacks are always racially motivated, but can never fathom if they themselves are in turn, when it comes to politics or anything else. Some whites are quick to charge blacks or other non-whites with playing the race card, but never believe that whites could play this 'card'. Personally I've never liked the terminology because it reduces real pain and loss caused by discrimination into some type of cynical game that non-whites inflict on hapless, innocent whites, which is bullsh*t IMO. If there is a race card, some elite whites centuries ago created the card, heck, they created the whole deck.

One more thing....about the town halls. I think you glossed over the fact that many of the people causing a commotion at the town halls weren't simply their to talk about their concerns or state a case, they were there to hurl insults at Congresspeople and accuse them of being communists, socialists, or Nazis. Of course they have the First Amendment right to do so, but let's be real and call it like it is. I don't have a problem with people expressing their displeasure in a public forum, but at the same time, some of these people were out there just to cause a disturbance and prevent other citizens from speaking, expressing their views, or allowing the Congressperson to explain health care legislation.

It's not about soft balling people or not talking hard questions, of course you're totally oblivious to the warm and fuzzies Hannity gave Dick Cheney during the Bush years or the T-ball games he played with Sarah Palin. And I'm sure you got steamed about how the leftist media mistreated poor Sarah Palin. But you're not so sanguine in terms of seeing skewered treatment of President Obama. It's about being respectful and acting like a responsible citizen, which I felt many who participated in the health care forums did not do. And I feel that some who participate in the Tea Party rallies also do not do.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 26, 2010, 10:33:18 pm
Emperorjones, I moved my response to your post to the "Black Tea Partier" thread, which is where I think that discussion really belongs.

Focusing on the topic of this thread: It is bizarre that people on this Forum, with the exception of you, have been unwilling to answer my simple question regarding what they think of those who would conspire to infiltrate the Tea Party Movement in order to create racist or embarrassing incidents for the Media.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: moor on April 28, 2010, 09:56:34 am
Emperorjones, I moved my response to your post to the "Black Tea Partier" thread, which is where I think that discussion really belongs.

Focusing on the topic of this thread: It is bizarre that people on this Forum, with the exception of you, have been unwilling to answer my simple question regarding what they think of those who would conspire to infiltrate the Tea Party Movement in order to create racist or embarrassing incidents for the Media.

Aside from splitting hairs over what "role" the deceivers attempted to play - the intent was to elicit a particular response/negative action on behalf of the targeted group - Substitute ACORN for TPM, and you probably would have had more responses.  Regardless, I told you what I thought.  For me - the two scenarios were/are analagous.. if not precisely parallel... and heinous.   Infiltration, Entrapment---tomatoe, tomato
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 28, 2010, 10:49:48 am
So I take it, Moor, that you find highly objectionable the tactics advocated, and conspired, to impersonate Tea Party activists to behave in racist, stupid or offensive ways, for purposes of created fabricated incidents for Media coverage.  Yes?

I don't see a parallel to the ACORN situation, other than they happen to have the common aspect of impersonation.  But critical is that the actors who posed the hypothetical question to ACORN workers did so to see how the ACORN workers would really respond, and their efforts proved to be revealing.  They did NOT pretend to be ACORN workers, and then as ACORN worker impersonators, advocate the support of illegal conduct to the Media.  The real ACORN workers did this very effectively, on their own.  I'm sorry, but yes, I do see this as apples and oranges.
Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: moor on April 28, 2010, 02:02:22 pm
So I take it, Moor, that you find highly objectionable the tactics advocated, and conspired, to impersonate Tea Party activists to behave in racist, stupid or offensive ways, for purposes of created fabricated incidents for Media coverage.  Yes?

I don't see a parallel to the ACORN situation, other than they happen to have the common aspect of impersonation.  But critical is that the actors who posed the hypothetical question to ACORN workers did so to see how the ACORN workers would really respond, and their efforts proved to be revealing.  They did NOT pretend to be ACORN workers, and then as ACORN worker impersonators, advocate the support of illegal conduct to the Media.  The real ACORN workers did this very effectively, on their own.  I'm sorry, but yes, I do see this as apples and oranges.


"Tea party crashers should use misspelled protest signs, make wild claims during interviews or other actions that would damage public opinion of the party, the Web site encouraged."


I guess this bears repeating for the third time -  I'm not condoning... in fact, I find it downright sad that this guy couldn't find enough fundamentally wrong with the idea of grown adults so intellectually and emotionally stunted that they can't engage in spirited and thoughtful discussion with their peers and have retreated to some misguided sense of "patriotism" and jaded notion of neo-colonialism masquerading as nationalism that he had to resort to -- the same intellectually and emotionally stunted type of behavior in kind.   :-[

But I'm sorry, Michael, I just don't possibly see how you can reasonably say that one set of tactics is less reprehensible than the other.  Apples to Oranges, arguably - both still rotten.   Mr. O'Keefe purposefully misrepresented himself as a potential client to a ACORN, an organization whose everyday function was to take walk-in clients off the street, and asked questions solely designed for the express purpose of eliciting responses that would discredit the organization.  Although noone from ACORN actually filled out paperwork for him or made representations on his behalf, one employee was found to have answered his "hypothetical" questions.  In comparison, Mr. Levin advocated persons unknown going out and joining the TPM for the express purpose of misrepresenting themselves as bigots, illiterates and racists solely to discredit the organization.

Inalagous??  We'll just have to agree to disagree here, I'm afraid.

I'm a bit more bothered by the moral high ground that you've taken with respect to the aggrieved TPM (although as far as I can tell - there has been no real injury here.  It's all hypothetical)  I think, for starters, you've adopted a very unwarranted, dismissive attitude toward the like-minded tactics employed by Mr. OKeefe against ACORN last summer- if I'm not mistaken, he tried several times rather unsuccessfully to spring his ruse upon ACORN offices up and down the East Coast until he found 1 employee in the Baltimore office who he was succesfully able to solicit.. and that person was later fired by ACORN officials.  Do you think that isolated, aberrance is justification for demonizing an entire organization? 

By the logic you've displayed in arguing for objective examination of the TPM it would not, since the damning actions of such bad seeds can't necessarily be imparted upon the whole.. 

Now, some Oregonian junior-high school teacher wanted to rally people to join the TPM and deliberately sow discontent by misspelling signs, and acting like fools on TV.  By your own logic and argument, wouldn't such behavior be frowned upon by right-minded (no pun) members of this movement almost immediately?  Wouldn't someone...anyone... in the crowd have the gall to say, "Heeeyyy wait a minute, buddy!  That's not what we are about!"     Such actors would (righfully) be ostracized as anathema to the movement, yes? 

But what if nothing was said?  What if no one moved to condemn such actions in a public setting?  Wouldn't such silence in the face of such stupidity have been tantamount to an adoption of such behavior or viewpoints?  Would it substantiate some of the closely-held criticisms by the majority of people in this country that something about the TPM just seems a bit... off?

Since the site has been taken down, and none of the solicitations of this individual have bore any fruit, this discussion is probably academic, but perhaps people find your argument disingenuous due to the fact that the TPM was already associated with misspelled, racist signs and bad behaviour BEFORE this guy even suggest it in his blog?  Similar to Mr. Okeefe - don't you think it's possible, dare I say, reasonable to bet Mr. Levin was trying to fan flames of bad behavior that many believed were already smoldering?  I notice he never advocated going out and spitting on Congressmen, calling them at home, or threatening them directly.


Title: Re: Skumbag Leftist Foes of Tea Party Movment Infiltrate Rallies, Skew Media
Post by: michaelintp on April 28, 2010, 02:17:53 pm
My understanding is that no participant at a Tea Party rally has the authority to require that another participant tear up his sign.  It is a grassroots movement, without one central "authority" to mandate what can, and cannot, be expressed.

As to ACORN, more than one office was implicated.

But I'm glad you don't condone the tactics advocated by the Tea Party Impostor group.

Finally, I am NEVER disingenuous on the HEF. What would my purpose be? Do you think I really believe I'm going to change anyone's mind on any issue?  If, as a fluke, great, but I'm not holding my breath.