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Dutchess_III's avatar

What is the "Tea Party Express"?

Asked by Dutchess_III (26838 points ) July 18th, 2010

I don’t really know much about the “tea party,” so I don’t understand this article. Were there those who actually stood behind this guy for writing such a disgustingly racist fictional letter?

Maybe I should start with “Who is the Tea Party?” My dim understanding is it’s comprised of those insanely rabid republicans, but that’s all I know. What is their goal? How does that horrible letter fit in with what they’re doing?

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25 Answers

ItsAHabit's avatar

According to its website, the Tea Party Express refers to a series of rallies across the country.

Dutchess_III's avatar

From the article above I got the impression that the Tea Party Express was a specific faction of the Tea Party. Go look at the link. It’s a quick read, but does that express the views of all the Tea Party participants to greater or lesser degrees?

Lightlyseared's avatar

Is it a train where tea baggers get together to do some tea bagging?

filmfann's avatar

Since much of this party is a train wreck, calling it the express seems fitting.

Mamradpivo's avatar

It’s a bunch of racists and angry old folks in an RV with an American flag painted on the side.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Mamradpivo and @filmfann That’s my impression too. What is their purpose in being?

Mamradpivo's avatar

@Dutchess_III My understanding is that they hold a bunch of rallies and occasionally endorse candidates. They’re one of many subgroups within the roster of the current Republican Party.

ETpro's avatar

The original Tea Party may or may not have been an astroturfed effort of Republican PR firms and lobbyists, but the Tea Party Patriots and the Tea Party Express bus tour they organized is pure astroturfing. It is the brain child of longtime Republican legislator/lobyist/PR man Dick Armey’s Freedomworks, the same outfit that organized the massive town hall disruptions early in the Healthacare debate. and has enjoyed almost round-the clock free advertising in the form of faux “news” opn Fox News and in other Murdoch owned media.

All these efforts are funded largely by the arch conservative coal magnate, David Koch of Koch Industries.

ItsAHabit's avatar

ETpro When people enjoy their Constitutional rights and hold peaceful rallies they’re “disruptions”? Mao, Stalin, Mussolini and a host of other dictators would agree and prohibit them. Indeed, they did and many tyrants around the world still do.

I proudly and very strongly defend the Constitutional right of free speech and the right of assembly of everyone, not just those with whom I disagree.

ETpro's avatar

@ItsAHabit When people go to political town hall meetings where our elected leaders hope to have an open discussion with their constituents, but these people go in large, organized groups with pre-written instructions on how to disport the meeting, bellow over any discussion, shake their fasts and express phony outrage about lies like death panels and massive government takeovers of healthcare, yes, that is like tyranny. That sort of Brownshirt behavior is how Adolph Hitler grabbed power in Germany without ever being able to win at the ballot box.

I am for the right of free speech as well, and I am going to use it to call out the phony astroturfing and the Brownshirt tactics. They have no place in democracy. THey are the tools of those who seek perpetual one-party rule.

filmfann's avatar

@ETpro How appropriate is a name like Dick Armey?

ETpro's avatar

@filmfann Ha! The man has certainly tried to live up to the name—or should I say down to it.

ItsAHabit's avatar

Mao, Stalin, Mussolini, Castro and a host of other dictators used, and still use, excuses to silence those who legitimately oppose their actions. People in the U.S. thankfully still have the right to organize, prepare questions ahead of time, and express what tyrants may consider “phony outrage” at government actions.

The Constitution clearly intended to protect dissent against those who argue that “They have no place in a democracy.” Delegitimizing opposition is still widely used to silence opposition by Castro and others who are intolerant and of human freedom and citizen rights.

Without citizens who courageously speak out and defend those who promote views with which they disagree, none of us will have any freedoms to defend. Then tyrants, no matter how well intentioned, will rule and the Constitution will be a meaningless document.

ETpro's avatar

@ItsAHabit Seems like we just had this conversation here. All the brutal dictators you like to site used thuggery and intimidation of dissent to grab power. You’re quite right we have free speech here. I am very, very glad we do. Because I will use my right to speak out to denounce Brownshirt tactics every single time they rear their ugly head. I did so back when Joe McCarthy was using his vicious demagoguery to build himself up as a GREAT LEADER and I will do so as well when demagogues like Dick Armey organize a gang of thugs to shout down public meetings, crush open debate and create the false appearance they are a huge and angry majority when, in fact, they are a very small percentage of the electorate.

Nobody that I know of has argued that dissenters have no place in a democracy. The claim I made is that Brownshirt tactics have no place in a democracy. Attend town halls. Speak up in turn. lay out your arguments for what you believe we should do. But bellowing out to shut up all other voices has no place in democracy. Holding rallys with sidearms on to discuss second amendment “remedies” if you can’t win at the ballot box has no place in democracy. Citing duly elected leaders and saying we’ve got them in our cross hairs and its time to “take them out” has no place in democracy.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I’m all for freedom of speech, no matter what they have to say. I just they could be halfway civil about it.

ETpro's avatar

What if instead of Town Hall meetings, I organized hundreds of people to go with me to movie theaters adn, as soon as the movie gets interesting, stand up and start bellowing at the screen. Surely disrupting movies is covered by free speech, no? Hardly. I’d be carted off to jail with all my compadres. But of course, interrupting something as pointless as trying to fix our broken healthcare system before it bankrupts the nation is far less important than interfering with people trying to hear a movie.

mattbrowne's avatar

Express stupidity is still stupidity. Maybe those folks should take a History 101 textbook and Democracy 101 textbook with them. I say, good education should be available for everyone.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Lightlyseared Reading the link. Saw ”.....armed with AK-47s, assorted handguns, and ammunition” Did that really happen?

ETpro's avatar

@Dutchess_III It happened on the anniversary of the Muir Federal Building bombing by Timmothy McVeigh. That’s a banner day to the government haters—those that are all for the US Constitution except the part about electing senators, and freedom for their opponents to speak, and the establishment clause, and the primacy clause, and ruling against Nulification. Oh, let’s just say they are for the 2nd amendment. Not to hunt, or defend themselves. They have in mind “2nd Amendment Remedies” (As Tea Party candidate Sharon Angle of Nevada said) if they can’t win at the ballot box. They seem convinced that if we could just get rid of all government and thus all taxes, everything would run itself perfectly.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@ETpro I can’t believe they have any sort of power. I can’t believe anyone listens to their refudiated crap.

ETpro's avatar

@Dutchess_III Wasn’t there a time when most Germans thought the same of the Nazi Brownshirts?

Dutchess_III's avatar

@ETpro Ohhhhhhhhhhh! You know, you just answered the question I asked you in the Palin/refudiate thread. They’re brainwashing themselves….

ETpro's avatar

@Dutchess_III Ha! Maybe the John Birchers were right about their water fluoridation conspiracy, but it just backfired and made a crop of RWNJs instead of an obedient flock of communist zombies.

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