Friday, February 05, 2010

Tea Time

Tom Tancredo, former Congressman from Colorado, opened the Tea Party convention by attacking not only the President, but the current system that allowed Barack Obama to be voted into office in the first place. Some choice quotes from his "speech":

“people who could not even spell the word ‘vote’, or say it in English, put a committed socialist ideologue in the White House. His name is Barack Hussein Obama.”

“the cult of multiculturalism, aided by leftists, liberals all over who don’t have the same idea about America as we do.”

“we do not have a civics, literacy test before people can vote in this country.”


This is the "keynote address" for the Tea Party convention. The Tea Party movement, which was started to protest the growth of the Federal Government and a perceived lack of response from elected officials, has devolved into a home for the disgruntled and disenchanted of all stripes. I would ask those who are asking for “their country back”, to define exactly what that means. I do believe that there are people who initially joined the TP movement out of a sincere concern for they viewed as a lack of response from leadership. The movement was quickly taken over by those who saw it as a great way to cover their “Fear of a Black Planet” (to quote Public Enemy). Tancredo is obviously making it perfectly clear what he means. In his America, those who don’t look like him are not welcome in the political discussion. In his America, the President will always be a White, protestant male. In his America, people of color know their place. Unfortunately for him (and fortunately for the rest of us), that country doesn’t exist anymore and we are all the better for it.

I honestly believe that there is reason to think that our elected officials have lost touch with the people they are supposed to represent. I believe that there is an argument to made about the size and scope of government as well. However belonging to an organization that is rapidly taken over by bigots looking for cover to attack the very diversity that has made this country what it is, does not seem like the best way to get a point across. As for Tancredo, people like him will always look for an audience to try and spread their particular brand of hate. We can only hope that as time goes on, the audience for this particular brand of “political speech” gets smaller and smaller.

22 comments:

TRUTH 101 said...

Tancredo's words prove what I say about the reactionary right. That it's base is bigots, homophobes and idiots. I forgot who was running a long time ago but the republican opponent called the Democrat a "practicing homosapien." These people have been making villains out of thin air for geneations. Despite all that I still am proud to say I'm a practicing, multicultural homosapien. I will not be intimidated.

Infidel753 said...

Well, the more this comes out, the better. As the racism grows more blatant it will drive a wedge between the worst and the not-quite-worst.

Remember, too, that the audience consisted of those able to shell out over $500 for a ticket, and still willing to do so even after all the stories about profiteering and people bailing on the convention. That's some pretty exotic flavors of teabag.

Sue said...

wow Mycue, this is unbelievable in the year 2010 in the US of A. This has to be a tiny minority of bigoted, hatefilled idiots. I keep hearing how the rethugs will take more than 25 seats in the House and also many seats in the Senate and it's mindboggling to me. Sure dems are pretty much sitting back letting the thugs run the show, but damn people get with it. How can we go back to rethug reign??? The people are so delusional I would not put it past the voters to go back to rethuggery.

Mycue23 said...

Truth,
I am also proud to be a multicultural homosapien.

Infidel,
I think that you're right on target here. The more people are exposed to the neanderthal attitudes coming out of people like Tancredo, the better. I have to believe that there are very few people who would welcome a return to the days when voting was not a right for every American. I have to believe that there are very few people who want to return to the good old days of Jim Crow. Not that there aren't some, but I'm assuming the great majority of people do not share those views.

Mycue23 said...

Sue,
The number of people who share the views of people like Tancredo are falling each year, but they do still exist. We have to be careful not to equate these views with those of the Republican party. There is no great movement in this country to overturn the voting rights act. However, if these sort of extreme views can be cheered (and they were), then I think that it's important that Americans be made aware of exactly what is being bandied about at this "convention". It's also important that those who count themselves as part of the Tea Party movement be made aware of what type of views are being championed in their name.

It is very possible that the Republicans will make significant gains in the mid term elections. It happened to Reagan, Clinton and Bush. As we have witnessed on many occasions in American history, the people do not always vote in their best interest. The American people also have very short memories. It's hard to believe that the majority of Americans are willing to buy the argument that all of our problmes are the result of the President, but Low Information Voters are easily swayed. GWB spent the first 8 years of this decade making the rich, richer and leaving to poor to fend for scraps. That fact has somehow been lost/ignored by those looking for someone to blame for the current mess. I still think that if Dems and independents, who propelled the President in '08, actually show up to the polls then it might not be as bad as expected. The problem is motivating and inspiring those people to get out and vote.

Sue said...

why do you say don't equate those tea party views and bigots with the repub party? They are republicans. Those who talk about the tea party people say they are mostly repubs or libertarians. They surely are not democrats. Those who carry the Hitler signs, the Obama is a socialist signs, we need to take back our country signs, and the tea baggers, bigots and racists, what party do you think they represent?

Mycue23 said...

Sue,
Indeed the majority of the tea party members are Republicans, but the most vocal and repulsive represent an exterme wing of the party. Dems and Repubs alike have extremists in their midst. There are certainly those under the Dem banner that are committed Socialists as there are those under the Repub banner that are committed Libertarians/segregationists,etc. I don't think that we should paint with too broad a brush when it comes to those extreme viewpoints. Some on the Right are certainly willing to ascribe Socialist beliefs to the President and anyone who would call themsevles a Democrat, but I don't think that we have to play that same game.

Those extreme views are repulsive, but I don't think that Tom Tancredo or those who cheered his racists comments last night would represent the views of the majority of the Republican party. Perhaps I'm giving them too much credit, but I'd like to think not.

tnlib said...

I lived in Denver when this guy first started his political career. I was amazed the first time he ran for the House. He is all the things everyone says he his - ignorant, obviously racist and not very ethical in money matters (which is why I suspect he didn't run the last time).

The city of Denver is very liberal and diverse. It is a city/county government and it is the growing suburbs that are so conservative.

Sue said...

I just viewed a youtube video from the convention. It is a FOX report with polls and they said equal numbers of the TP are not happy with either party, but those speaking at the convention say the TP members will be working to get conservatives elected. So, confusing? Yes. But I do think the teabaggers are a crazy fringe group even tho they didn't start out like that(as you said here also).

Mycue I have to admit the whole damn thing confuses me but I hope you are right and the republican party is not a party of crazies because we just might have to live with a repub president again in our lifetime.(I hope not though!)

Oso said...

Mycuc23,
Tancredo doesn't even make an attempt to disguise his racism. What's frustrating or maybe I should say frightening, is that a lot of teabaggers "filter" everything thru their ideology and honestly would not view that speech as the racist crap it is.
I would tend to agree with you that the teabaggers are a kind of sub-species of the Republican party and don't have majority buy-in.
I do fear though, that in the same way that a moderate police officer will side with extreme colleagues against the public so too would moderate Republicans side with teabaggers when the alternative is siding with a multi racial liberal crowd.

Jack Jodell said...

This Tea Party phenomenon is very curious, complex, and paradoxical. It is easy to understand their adherents' frustration with government, as so many of those in Washington are not really serving their constituents or the public interest, and are instead legislating for the benefit of their biggest campaign donors (most often corporate interests). And their concern with a gigantic national debt is also understandable for its future implications if it is allowed to go on indefinitely.

But what is most irrational and disturbing is what they view as solutions to these problems. To simply throw out all incumbents is a foolish idea. Some ARE true dedicated public servants, and others have necessary knowledge and experience to get things done properly. And, as the severe downturn which occured in 1937, in the middle of the Great Depression proves, cutting back on government spending during a downturn is the WORST course of action to take. These tea partiers are demanding quick and simple solutions for deep, long-lasting, and very complex problems. Their thought processes and actions are half-baked and immature. By simply scuttling everything and allowing laissez-faire to reign supreme, they would unwittingly be giving absolute power to the most oppressive of all entities, the modern corporation. They would be cutting their own throats.

But the most disturbing aspects of these activists are their unfocused malcontentedness, their racist and nativist undercurrents, and their intolerance and downright ignorance. They have faulty and poorly-thought-out aims. They are rebels with an uncertain and at times very misdirected cause. If allowed to gain operational control of this country, it will usher in a political Dark Ages the likes of which we have never seen.

Jack Jodell said...

Tom Tancredo and Sarah Palin are both perfect personnifications of this movement. Both are painfully unknowledgeable, shallow, nativist, and overly-simplistic. Exactly what this country does NOT need going forward!

Holte Ender said...

These buggers keep forgetting to wear their hoods, perhaps a good thing, we know who they are.

They see things as up, down, right, left, black white. It's obvious no serious thoughts ever enter their heads. We really do have to blow past these people, lets leave them struggling in the mire that is apartheid.

SJ said...

Amen.
-SJ

Vigilante said...

It's time to look at what's in the tea that these assholes are drinking.

Mycue23 said...

Jack,
Brilliant analysis. You said it ( the most disturbing aspects of these activists are their unfocused malcontentedness) certainly better than I could have.

Holte,
I think that some are certainly showing their true colors. It becomes harder for them to deny the racist elements among them when the keynote speaker at their "convention" spouts such hateful nonsense.

Vig,
The "convention" is devoid of alchohol. Perhaps they are also trying to return us to the days of prohibition. I'll be happy to tell them that they can have my liquor when they pry it from my cold dead hands.

Vigilante said...

Like Shackleton's Scotch? Now those hose were cold, dead hands!

Vigilante said...

"those"

MadMike said...

This "throw the bums out" mentality has been around for as long as I can remember and that is a long time. I am with Jack on this one. While tempting it does a great disservice to those who are truly dedicated to making this country great.

Secondly, the Baggers will get nowhere. It is a tiny pebble in a great big pond. There are some who compare their "movement" to the colonies against the King. There is no comparison and not enough motivation.

Manifesto Joe said...

These are serious dickheads. It's a question of whether they can organize well enough to market their dickheadedness to a larger audience. I fear that there are enough stupid people in the country now to be exploitable in large numbers. And these penis brains appear to have the courage of their cretinous convictions. Don't sell them short.

Beach Bum said...

I believe I may have mentioned this before but as an example of the ignorance of these Tea Baggers I have to look no further than my much abused co-workers.

At work my leadman, first line supervisor, heard about an impending long weekend trip down to Hilton Head, South Carolina. He let slip a snarky remark about Hilton Head being the location of Bill Clinton's Renaissance get together weekends. His view was that Hilton Head was some hotbed of liberalism. Being that getting even is a favorite pastime at my work I didn't say a word that Hilton Head is part of Joe Wilson's district and is about as whacked out conservative as the rest of this state.

Shattering his pseudo-intellectual notions is a little too risky.

TRUTH 101 said...

"Serious dickheads." Awesome.