Posts Tagged ‘Tea Party’

[original post 10/29/2010]

Tea Party groups in New Jersey are outraged over ads that have mysteriously surfaced in support of a supposed Tea Party candidate.  The sponsored ads on Google are being served up all over the web, in places like BlogTalkRadio, in support of one Peter DeStefano, and direct viewers to the website of

The problem is, the NJ Tea Party Coalition, the owners of that website, did not purchase any such ads.

“I find this ad extremely troubling,” Brian Baldwin of the NJ Tea Party Coalition told local press. “We did not authorize this nor are we supporting Mr. DeStefano.”

What’s worse is that the group – and every Tea Party group in NJ that I’ve communicated with – has been denouncing DeStefano as a “fake” Tea Party candidate for months now.  They’ve all been complaining about this to the appropriate authorities for some time now.  After seeing these latest ads, Tea Party leaders in NJ are urging their members and other like-minded leaders to contact the local election officials and the Secretary of States’ office to look into DeStefano’s candidacy.


After hounding the press about their suspicions, some in the media had taken notice of the Tea Party’s claims in NJ.  And they agreed.



[original post 8/13/2010]

Congratulations, Tea Partiers!  You know you’ve become a genuine threat to the Progressive movement when they start making t-shirts about you.

The Agenda Project has launched “F*ck Tea”, an anti-Tea Party campaign that aims to “dismiss the tea party and promote the progressive cause.”  Check out their nifty little video promoting their positive cause:

As Agenda Project founder Erica Payne explained to Politico’s Ben Smith:

“We will be launching new products in the next several months to help people all over the country F*ck Tea.  Products like a Glenn Beck Bowl Buddy (Beck B Scrubbin) and others are perfect holiday gifts or just a great way to say, ‘I love you and our country’ to your spouse, friend or family.”

The website features a variety of t-shirts and mugs imprinted with the slogan “F*uck tea,” and Ms. Payne infers there will be more to come in the future.  It also splashes a host of unsourced “Tea Party Facts” across the left side of the page, in an attempt to demean and minimize those who belong to or support the Tea Party movement, and imply that those who don’t are somehow of superior intellect based solely upon said “facts.”  Meanwhile, the site dotingly highlights the word “progress” as “a movement toward a goal; advancement; growth; development; continuous improvement,” calling it “The Real American Party.”  Frankly, I see nothing “real” about this or about any of the progressive people involved in it.


Now, I’ll admit, I’m one conservative constitutionalist who embraces the “F” word as part of my regular vocabulary, as much of a shock as that may be to leftists who may have already stereotyped me otherwise.  But I was not aware that the word had become synonymous with positive development and improvement.  (What a relief!)  If brandishing the “F” word across my chest and gallivanting in public is a sign of intellect and the new symbol of the party of Barack Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, then I’m more than happy to save my $22.50, thanks.  (Besides, if one’s cause were so important that such a word absolutely had to be used, the Libertarian in me wonders, why not just spell it out?)  Also somewhat amusing about the entire venture  is that the very people railing against the tea parties and against capitalism are shelling out over $20 a shirt for someone’s concocted-idea-turned-business-venture.  It’s the very Capitalist tale that so many of the progressive left heartily opposes.


[original post 5/24/2010]

If you haven’t read by now all the headlines on this story, you’ll want to start at the beginning and read the first post, SEIU Storms Private Residence, Terrorizes Teenage Son of Bank of America Exec.  Because as each day passes, new facts are popping up.  The story seemed so outrageous at first.  After all, the thought of over 500 screaming and chanting protesters surrounding a Bank of America lawyer’s private residence while the man’s teenage son, home alone, hid frightened inside a bathroom – it’s just so extreme, even by SEIU’s standards.

I knew something was up when the following day, Fortune magazine editor Nina Easton, a neighbor of the targeted residence, published an account of the incident and was almost immediately attacked by what seemed like practically a coordinated dogpile of writers from several specific sources.

In almost mirror fashion to the Town Hall events last August, when both the Huffington Post and Media Matters seemingly tried to cover up and dismiss the violent acts that SEIU committed against Kenneth Gladney, the same players were again out in full force.  As our Larry O’Connor wrote, both outlets behaved less like journalists and more like arms of the SEIU press office, dismissing SEIU’s bad behavior and attacking an innocent party with fabricated conflicts of interest as a method of distraction and intimidation.

payne-podestaBob Borosage, Erica Payne, and John Podesta


And now we learn this:  Erica Payne, the guest who was invited to appear Friday on Megyn Kelley’s Fox News show and proceeded to blame the Tea Parties for the behavior of SEIU?  She was co-founder of Democracy Alliance, the very organization that spawned and is a donor to Media Matters.  SEIU Secretary-Treasurer Anna Burger is also the Vice-Chair of its Board.


[original post 5/21/2010]

Alinsky Rule #12: Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.

Nina Easton just became the left’s latest target.  Why?  So that SEIU can hide from the truth about its financial liabilities to Bank of America (more on that after the jump).


Easton, a Washington Editor for Fortune Magazine, wrote a column early morning Wednesday, addressing the outrageous protest organized by SEIU and National People’s Action, where 700 protesters stormed the front lawn of the private residence of Greg Baer, deputy general counsel for corporate law at Bank of America.

As I wrote in my post yesterday, “SEIU Storms Private Residence, Terrorizes Teenage Son of Bank of America Exec,” Easton is actually a neighbor of Baer.  When she was startled by the loud, screaming, bullhorn-rattling protesters, she called Baer’s teenage son to check on him.  Home alone, the frightened teenager had locked himself in the bathroom.  After witnessing the entire incident as it unfolded on her neighbor’s private property, Easton criticized the SEIU and left wing groups in her article for crossing the line this time.

Alinsky’s Rule # 12 states,

“Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions. (This is cruel, but very effective. Direct, personalized criticism and ridicule works.)”

In almost coordinated lock-step fashion, the 12th Rule was promptly and firmly applied.  As Larry O’Connor posted on Big Journalism yesterday, a series of several posts soon followed the publication of Nina Easton’s article:

  • Late Wednesday evening, John Vandeventer of SEIU posted “Nina Easton & the Bank Lobbyists: Too Close for Comfort” in response.  Conveniently, Vandeventer distracts readers by recounting the sob stories of foreclosure “victims”, then quickly focuses the attention on Easton and polarizes his target.  He proceeds to play a guilt by association game to tie her husband to Bank of America through Business Roundtable.  You can read my post from yesterday about that here.
  • Then came Arthur Delaney’s piece from the Huffington Post, with the headline: “Nina Easton, Fortune Columnist, Compares Bank Protesters To ‘God Hates Fags’ Group.”  He ends his piece with a link to an open letter to Easton penned by Al Marshall, SEIU Local 1021 shop steward in Oakland, CA.  Marshall begins his letter by mentioning that he flew out to DC for the protest  from CA because “Wall Street caused” his wife to lose her job, and then him and his wife to lose their house.  (I’d like to know how he could possibly afford those plane tickets, in that case).  The whole tenor of the post is undoubtedly less jovial than his prior day’s, when he gleefully bragged about the whole event.
  • And then, the much anticipated and expected Media Matters post: “Attacking SEIU, Nina Easton fails to disclose husband’s ties to Bank of America“.

Of all of the responses, not a single one of the posts actually addresses any of the issues. None will account for the fact that the protesters were on the private property of a private citizen, though Vandeventer tries to rationalize their actions as acceptable because the police supposedly followed the crowd to the location.  Then, he paints the picture that Baer is lurking in the crowd trying to blend in; rather, the man was trying to get to his front door without creating a scene so that he could get to his frightened son inside as quickly as possible.


[original post 5/20/2010]

By now, you’ve probably seen the mob-scene that developed on the front lawn of the private residence of Greg Baer, deputy general counsel for corporate law at Bank of America.  This was planned for some time by the SEIU as part of a larger national event, their Showdown on K Street, which was shared with National People’s Action and thousands of other activists from and other left-wing groups.

Prior to the main event on K Street in Washington DC, SEIU and company made a little pit stop.  According to Fortune magazine Washington editor Nina Easton, 14 busloads of riled up protesters unloaded on Baer’s private property and stormed up to his doorstep, while his teenage son was home alone.  Easton is a neighbor of Baer’s and had called to check on her neighbor’s son when she heard and saw all the commotion outside. Easton writes,

“Waving signs denouncing bank “greed,” hordes of invaders poured out of 14 school buses, up Baer’s steps, and onto his front porch. As bullhorns rattled with stories of debtor calls and foreclosed homes, Baer’s teenage son Jack — alone in the house — locked himself in the bathroom. “When are they going to leave?” Jack pleaded when I called to check on him.

Baer, on his way home from a Little League game, parked his car around the corner, called the police, and made a quick calculation to leave his younger son behind while he tried to rescue his increasingly distressed teen. He made his way through a din of barked demands and insults from the activists who proudly “outed” him, and slipped through his front door.

“Excuse me,” Baer told his accusers, “I need to get into the house. I have a child who is alone in there and frightened.”

Imagine what you would have done if your child were inside that house and that mob was on your front lawn as you tried to reach him.


[original post 4/8/2010]

I don’t know about you, but my benefits are shrinking and my wages have been reduced for 2010. And I certainly won’t be seeing any major increase in my salary this year.  My employer is struggling in this economy.  I know it, I see the sales and operating numbers.  Amazingly, no one in our company has complained once about the state of their salaries and benefits.  And after a recent round of layoffs, we’re all working two and three people’s jobs, too.  But we get it, we’re all a team, and together we have to do what we can to pitch in and help cut costs during a rough patch in time.  That’s just how business works.

Every single friend, family member, and neighbor I know is in the exact same position.

That’s why so many of us are appalled at the behavior of some of the union bosses these days.  Even some of the most ardent union defenders I know (the few people who typically argue with me over union policy) have had enough with all the headlines like this:

As National Bargaining for 100,000 Union Members at Kaiser Permanente Begins… SEIU-UHW Members Tell Kaiser: Keep Your Hands Off Our Healthcare Benefits

And they have also had enough of behavior like this:


[original post 2/14/2010]

It’s Not About the Recall, It’s About the First Amendment

Review of case briefs, case law research, and consultation with a number of attorneys, judges, and legal professionals contributed to the writing of this article.


Tea Party activists might be smarter than some would like to think.  And depending upon the outcome of a court case later this month, they might also play a role in setting legal precedent.

When New Jersey state election officials denied their submission to initiate a recall effort against U.S. Senator Robert Menendez, calling it unconstitutional, a grass-roots recall committee’s constitutional instincts kicked into full gear.  Attorneys for the committee, themselves Tea Party activists, filed to appeal the agency decision and began writing their supporting brief.

Meanwhile, seemingly everyone was now weighing in as a legal expert.  Some insist the decision is simple:  NJ has no constitutional authority to recall a US Senator; despite what its state constitution says, that authority is reserved for the federal government alone.  For weeks now, legal scholars, political pundits and the media have been chattering online about the case, now before the Appellate Division in the Superior Court of New Jersey, some treating it more like a sideshow and an outlet to take pot shots at Tea Partiers than a legitimate court proceeding with real constitutional significance.

But Dan Silberstein and Richard Luzzi, attorneys for the Committee to Recall Robert Menendez, a committee initiated by members of the Sussex County Tea Party, see this case in an entirely different light.  They insist this case is not about whether a recall order from the state is judicially enforceable against a United States Senator, rather, it’s all about protecting the first amendment right to free speech. And they are taking the matter very seriously.  Based upon recent developments in the case, apparently so are several others, including some high profile legal experts and the courts.


[original post 1/17/2010]

New Jersey’s State Constitution is unconstitutional.  That’s apparently what one New Jersey election official seems to think.

A committee seeking approval from the state to petition registered voters on whether to move forward with a special election to recall US Senator Robert Menendez was denied that request, in a letter on January 11th which stated that the US Constitution does not provide for such a proceeding.

But in 1993, the people of New Jersey overwhelmingly voted to reserve for themselves “the power to recall, after at least one year of service, any elected official in this State or representing this State in the United States Congress” (emphasis added), and in 1995 made this amendment to their state constitution under Article I, 2b.

This has left many New Jersey voters wondering why Secretary of State Nina Mitchell Wells, a member of the Executive Branch, not the Judicial Branch, would take it upon herself and her position to declare the NJ state Constitution unconstitutional.  After reviewing the committee’s preliminary appeal statement, a judge in the Superior Court of NJ Appellate Division has just issued an order allowing a motion to accelerate the appeal.