Mainstream Media Pushing Hard to Defeat the Tea Party, Raise Taxes

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    Aug 26, 2011 9:28 PM GMT
    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2011/08/26/mainstream-media-pushing-hard-to-defeat-tea-party-raise-taxes/

    By Dan Gainor, August 26, 2011, Foxnews.com

    The Politico headline read: “Conservative elites pine for 2012 hero.” They could have shortened that sentence to “Elites pine” or more likely to “Elites freak the heck out.” Because it’s not just the conservative cognoscenti, it’s all of them. The folks in charge of the mainstream media equation miss the good old days when they ran everything and ordinary American voters and taxpayers did as they were told.

    Those days are gone and the in-crowd is afraid it is on the way out, too. Congress’s favorability rating is down to 13 percent and even the lefties at Mother Jones are whining that both political parties are canceling town hall meetings to hide from angry voters.

    The era when elite Washington – of all three major parties: Republicans, Democrats and the Media – could just raise our taxes or cut deals behind closed doors has gone bye-bye. And the Powers That Be are determined to turn back the clock.

    They blame the Tea Party and rightly so. A combination of a grassroots movement and a sophisticated technology now able to actually inform Americans has successfully taken away some power from politicians and the media. The logical solution would be for both groups to reflect more what the public actually wants from them – a saner, more affordable government and a media that is fair to someone other than just liberals.

    Instead, the elites have declared war on the Tea Party.

    That in itself is nothing new. Since the first spot of tea a couple years ago, anti-tax, anti-Big Government protesters have been called bigots, violent and a dangerous fringe element. The recent debt battle took it to a far worse level as those in power sought to blame Tea Partiers on our nation’s unwillingness to spend itself into the grave.

    The result of that battle was, seemingly, a toss-up. The debt ceiling was raised and a super committee established to discuss ways to solve the budget crunch. But the design of the committee makes tax hikes likely. The deck is stacked as everyone from President Obama and Vice President Biden to Speaker Boehner and almost every generic pundit is now pushing to do just that. And the clock is ticking as a Dec. 23 deadline looms.

    At least a few admit they want to use the chance to raise taxes. Obama, most Dems and even loud-mouthed billionaire Warren Buffett are begging for a tax hike.

    On Sunday, Aug. 21, the major media chimed in. The Washington Post ran two huge pieces skewering the Tea Party on the economy and more. Columnist Allan Sloan led off the business section claiming “the Tea Party types bear primary responsibility.” Over in the opinion section (as if the first piece wasn’t opinion), they ran a pro-spending, pro-Keynsian economics piece complaining that critics of such policies “almost surely have it wrong.” The critics are, of course, the Tea Party and politicians who are friendly toward it like Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann and Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

    The very same day, The New York Times produced an editorial urging “business leaders to change the minds of the Tea Party lawmakers” and back a “grand bargain that cut spending and raised tax revenue.”

    The push to raise taxes is near universal across the media for two reasons. First, it boosts the size of the burgeoning Nanny State. The journalistic elite always support more government. Even when politicians trim the size of growth in government, reporters bemoan such “draconian” cuts. Journalists have never met a draconian increase in the size of government that they didn't like, but taxpayers sure have.

    Secondly, a tax hike would require squashing the Tea Party. And the elites have joined in the hunt.

    Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne Jr. has claimed GOP politicians are “subservient” to the Tea Party. Dionne's columnist at the Post, Richard Cohen, concurs and said Perry “occupies the cultural and intellectually empty heartland of the Republican Party” because he “vows to diminish Washington’s influence.” Cohen calls that a “moronic policy,” instead claiming “what America desperately needs is more, not less, Washington.”

    The network news shows use the same strategy with just a dash more subtlety. When local Tea Party leaders confronted Obama in Iowa, they were put down on air. On NBC, Chuck Todd noted the “bitter taste of the energy and confrontational style of the Tea Party” and their “in-your-face tactics.” ABC’s Jake Tapper referred to it the “unruly Tea Party style.”

    Politicians took the same view. “Former Republican Senator Alan Simpson, who co-chaired the deficit commission, said the American people are rightly disgusted, and he’s personally bothered by Republicans undermining any chance of Speaker Boehner compromising,” explained Tapper July 12. That’s a Republican argument supporting Obama’s “shared sacrifice” plan where the elites control more of your money.

    They were mirroring the elitist anti-Tea Party talking points, such as the one from Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod who called the downgrade of U.S. debt “a Tea Party downgrade.” That, despite the fact that Tea Partiers were the only ones willing to cut enough government to prevent the downgrade in the first place.

    Wherever you look, elites are moving to crush resistance.

    The West does it the democratic way of course. In Syria and Libya, they use tanks and guns and SCUD missiles. Here in America, elites use the more dangerous weapon of the media to hang on to power over everything we do. Their bosses envy the power of their counterparts elsewhere. France , for example, just “announced $16 billion in new taxes to ensure it reaches its deficit-reduction targets,” rather than cut its massive welfare state.

    In the U.S., Democrats and Republicans alike embrace the tax-and-spend approach, so the Tea Party threatens them all.

    Naturally, it must be stopped. Rep. Frederica Wilson, (D-Fla.), made it all clear in a recent speech. “Let us all remember who the real enemy is. The real enemy is the Tea Party – the Tea Party holds the Congress hostage.”

    Like most politicians, she’s wrong. If the Tea Party really had that much sway in Congress, our economy and our nation would be in much better shape.
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    Aug 26, 2011 9:38 PM GMT
    jprichva saidThe media isn't leading the way. The latest poll shows that the Tea Party has only 28% favorability, and over 40% unfavorable (high 40s, IIRC).

    It is a hallmark of the conservative psyche to have wild paranoid fantasies about the media, but they don't actually "run" anything.

    The simple truth is that the Tea Party is about as popular as Bush was in his final year in office----and with exactly the same people. Ho hum.

    Is there a possible correlation between the media efforts and the poll numbers? BTW - the opponent in 2012 will not be the Tea Party, but a real candidate.
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    Aug 26, 2011 11:37 PM GMT
    One of Goebbels' tactics was to fan a feeling of aggrieved victimhood, and blame their political opponents. He knew exactly what he was doing, and was quite willing to call it what it was: The Big Lie.

    (as I vaguely recall the quote, it went: 'When you lie. Make it a big one, and repeat it often. They will believe.'


    this article is just more of that drumbeat: "the elites " are against you and they will enslave you all!icon_rolleyes.gif



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    Aug 27, 2011 12:16 AM GMT
    Surely this guy jests !!!! The writer nor Socal can actually be serious about complaining that the mainstream media is trying to bring down the TBaggers, Surely not ? Its the Mainstream media that gave the TBaggers undue attention in the first place that brought them what little level of clout they attained, and even that wasn't deserved.

    The Baggers should be thanking the 'elite' Media that they even exist. Most of us have been amazed that this assbackward Bagger bunch of religious nut cases keep getting attention, Well acting out, or doing extreme things always does get more attention. Maybe now the media is seeing that they awakened a monster and will starve the beast of the attention its so needs to survive. We can only hope. With baggers in prominence in the Repub party, there goes the bagger Palins "American Exceptionalism", its more like an American embarassment because of what we've come to with this group.
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    Aug 27, 2011 5:22 AM GMT
    Upper_Canadian saidOne of Goebbels' tactics was to fan a feeling of aggrieved victimhood, and blame their political opponents. He knew exactly what he was doing, and was quite willing to call it what it was: The Big Lie.

    (as I vaguely recall the quote, it went: 'When you lie. Make it a big one, and repeat it often. They will believe.'


    this article is just more of that drumbeat: "the elites " are against you and they will enslave you all!icon_rolleyes.gif


    Guess which political party/groups almost always and consistently claim victimhood? Tea partiers on the other hand, other than generally being employed - have a consistent message of empowerment - that reducing the power of government and placing responsibility on individuals results in better economic opportunity for all. Instead of whining of conspiracies, they instead have disintermediated much of mainstream media through social networks.

    Where I think the opponents of tea partiers have had success is in attacking them for their socially conservative views and being taken off focus by some self declared leaders in what has been a distributed and decentralized movement. So while polling shows that the "Tea Party" (which still does not exist), has fallen in popularity, their economic aims have been consistently receiving high levels of support across the political spectrum.

    That said, that the traditional media has consistently sneered at the tea partiers isn't news and the proof is not only plentiful as noted in the OP it is even rarely denied by journalists themselves who self identify largely as liberals.
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    Aug 27, 2011 6:33 AM GMT
    riddler78 said
    Upper_Canadian saidOne of Goebbels' tactics was to fan a feeling of aggrieved victimhood, and blame their political opponents. He knew exactly what he was doing, and was quite willing to call it what it was: The Big Lie.

    (as I vaguely recall the quote, it went: 'When you lie. Make it a big one, and repeat it often. They will believe.'


    this article is just more of that drumbeat: "the elites " are against you and they will enslave you all!icon_rolleyes.gif


    Guess which political party/groups almost always and consistently claim victimhood? Tea partiers on the other hand, other than generally being employed - have a consistent message of empowerment - that reducing the power of government and placing responsibility on individuals results in better economic opportunity for all. Instead of whining of conspiracies, they instead have disintermediated much of mainstream media through social networks.

    Where I think the opponents of tea partiers have had success is in attacking them for their socially conservative views and being taken off focus by some self declared leaders in what has been a distributed and decentralized movement. So while polling shows that the "Tea Party" (which still does not exist), has fallen in popularity, their economic aims have been consistently receiving high levels of support across the political spectrum.

    That said, that the traditional media has consistently sneered at the tea partiers isn't news and the proof is not only plentiful as noted in the OP it is even rarely denied by journalists themselves who self identify largely as liberals.





    Total bullshit.

    Poll after poll has shown that the American people disagree with the Tea Party's "economic aims".

    In fact - a majority of Americans support a balanced package of spending cuts and tax increases - JUST LIKE PRESIDENT OBAMA AND THE DEMOCRATS ADVOCATE.

    If you think the American people support the Tea Party's rigid inflexible ideological view that debt reduction must not include any tax increases at all - and that the Repubs have the right to force through a my-way-or-the-highway bill rather than a bipartisan bill - you're living in a Fox News fantasy.

    Just like Socal!
    As we can see from the link he posted in the OP, Socal gets his "news" straight from the Fox pro-right-wing propaganda channel.
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Aug 27, 2011 10:47 AM GMT
    images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSFvjl1nvtEk5NsR-UcpoG

    Nah .... it's just FOX News doing what's known as it's business model
    Shoring up the republican party - tea party
    and defending the progressively unpopular Bush Tax cuts icon_wink.gif

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    Aug 27, 2011 1:37 PM GMT
    riddler78 said
    Upper_Canadian saidOne of Goebbels' tactics was to fan a feeling of aggrieved victimhood, and blame their political opponents. He knew exactly what he was doing, and was quite willing to call it what it was: The Big Lie.

    (as I vaguely recall the quote, it went: 'When you lie. Make it a big one, and repeat it often. They will believe.'


    this article is just more of that drumbeat: "the elites " are against you and they will enslave you all!icon_rolleyes.gif


    Guess which political party/groups almost always and consistently claim victimhood? Tea partiers on the other hand, other than generally being employed - have a consistent message of empowerment - that reducing the power of government and placing responsibility on individuals results in better economic opportunity for all. Instead of whining of conspiracies, they instead have disintermediated much of mainstream media through social networks.

    Where I think the opponents of tea partiers have had success is in attacking them for their socially conservative views and being taken off focus by some self declared leaders in what has been a distributed and decentralized movement. So while polling shows that the "Tea Party" (which still does not exist), has fallen in popularity, their economic aims have been consistently receiving high levels of support across the political spectrum.

    That said, that the traditional media has consistently sneered at the tea partiers isn't news and the proof is not only plentiful as noted in the OP it is even rarely denied by journalists themselves who self identify largely as liberals.



    Hey wow. i agree with your first paragraph completely but I don;t get what you are saying in the rest. So put that one aside for a moment to focus onthe first one.

    We do agree on that - let's talk about that for a second. icon_biggrin.gif


    I note that same message of empowerment (the "take control" message is well focussed and clear.

    With that goes the tacit implication that someone else has subverted it, though. So the victim role is assumed, but not stated, no?
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    Aug 27, 2011 1:47 PM GMT
    OK I think I got what riddler is saying. in paras 2 & 3.


    Where I think the opponents of tea partiers have had success is in attacking them for their socially conservative views and being taken off focus by some self declared leaders in what has been a distributed and decentralized movement. "

    I agree with this up to the distributed and decentralized movement part. The roots of the movement are astroturf built by the Koch Brothers. Thery built the stadium and started the game - people joined in, but it was still an orchestrated beginning.



    "So while polling shows that the "Tea Party" (which still does not exist), has fallen in popularity, their economic aims have been consistently receiving high levels of support across the political spectrum."


    This I dispute, for reasons others have already noted (with links).


    "That said, that the traditional media has consistently sneered at the tea partiers isn't news and the proof is not only plentiful as noted in the OP it is even rarely denied by journalists themselves who self identify largely as liberals. "

    It is not the Tea Partiers who get sneered at, but their antics, costumes, and unrealistic math and expectations that are derided without mercy.

    The ones in Congress are sneered at for their obstructionism and inexperience with realpolitik.





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    Aug 27, 2011 2:34 PM GMT
    I think there's a difference between the victimhood espoused by many groups and the fight to "take back" power. I don't think those who are part of the movement - at least none that I know, see themselves as victims - but rather at least in part responsible for not being more politically active. These are after all, in large part people who have not considered themselves political in the past.

    Don't have much time today - but briefly, here's a remarkably fair overview of the history of the Tea Party considering the source -



    I think there are a few points to make here, while the Koch brothers may have funded parts of the movement, but it's like advertising, it was a message that resonated heavily with a lot of people and continues to do so (not the socially conservative message espoused by some self proclaimed leaders but the messages of economic freedoms). It's important to consider the history of the tea party movement particularly given the rather different birth of movements like the coffee party which has also received funding from traditional left wing sources but have largely fizzled out. I would also point out that the Koch brothers are avowed libertarians who argue for such things as gay marriage and were opposed to the Iraq war.

    The movement however was not orchestrated. Much of the local leadership rose up spontaneously and then were funded and given training. It's a movement that is remarkably new - which is why you got such gaffes as the Slate video points to. Further, Rick Santelli's epic rant was spontaneous and it was only after this rant that the movement bloomed (a movement which really had roots in porkbusters that started in opposition to frivolous domestic spending under Bush - and instrumental to pushing Trent Lott out - a big proponent of entitlements).

    As for the ridicule of the tea partiers who are as the NYT points out, tend to be more educated and wealthier than the general population - and yes, also whiter, there is a wholesale rejection of the message by liberals because it is one that does reject realpolitik and also rejects the massive growth in government interventions. If it weren't for the tea party for instance, we wouldn't have the massive reduction in entitlement spending which in turn has controlled some spending and continued to put pressure on additional reductions. As Santelli points out, if it weren't for the tea party movement the US might well have a much lower credit rating.