HomeEconomyFair Taxes and Tea Parties

I’m going to start this post off with a documentary created in 1982 by People for the American Way. It is 28 minutes long and is narrated by Burt Lancaster and documents the founding of the religious right, which, despite the election of President Obama, still controls political dialogue in this country. Pay particular attention to the words of Paul Weyrich, to whom I will return later in this post.

Now, what does this documentary have to do with the Fair Tax and Tea Parties? Everything. The prominent themes in the video center around individual freedom, liberty, and a rejection of the idea that government has a role in society. Government and liberals are evil and the enemy. And that is the whole thrust of the Tea Party movement. It is about straying from what Tea Party participants believe to be the “founding principles” of this country: a free, capitalist society where the government’s only job is to protect individual rights. I write this with considerable restraint, for any reasonably informed person knows that the Boston Tea Party was not about taxation without representation but about the efforts of a rising capitalist class in the colonies to secede from the British Empire. The Boston Tea Party was organized and led by Samuel Adams, a professional politician, and John Hancock, a wealthy businessman. Both were signers of the Declaration of Independence. For more information on the origins of the Boston Tea Party, consult the website of the Boston Tea Party Historical Society.

The main supporters of the Tax Day Tea Parties were FreedomWorks, don’tGo, and Americans for Prosperity. The Tea Parties were far from a “grass-roots” protest – they were organized and funded by corporate America, though tracing those connections is difficult. But SourceWatch is doing an admirable job of exposing the truth.

The Fair Tax, as I’ve noted in a previous post, is opposed by many Libertarian groups, who have never met a tax that they liked, and by many mainstream conservative groups, who support the present tax system because of the support it gives to Corporate America. O.K., so you can understand why the Fair Tax would be opposed by Libertarian groups, but why would conservatives, who benefit from the present system, also be opposed to the Fair Tax? Fair question. The answer, at least as far as I can determine, is that the conservatives are pragmatic, if nothing else, and see no possibility that the Fair Tax will ever be enacted. More importantly, they support the larger agenda of the Tax Day Tea Party movement, because by doing so, they are strengthening the regressive, anti-government movement in this country. A government that supports deregulation, such as we have experienced for the last 30 years, plays right into the hands of Corporate America and the financial manipulators on Wall Street that have ruined the financial futures of hundreds of millions of people across the world.

At the beginning of this post, I asked you to pay attention to the words of Paul Weyrich in the video. If you will read Corporate America’s Trojan Horse, from ALECWatch, which provides information about the American Legislative Exchange Council, you will understand better how Paul Weyrich and others harnessed the religious right to support the agenda of corporate America. It was a cynical ploy but it was wildly successful. Only now, after the events of last fall, has the alliance between the religious right and corporate America come into question. But never fear, corporate America is not done with us. They haven’t finished running this once great country into the ground for their benefit. The Tax Day Tea Parties are only the latest manifestation of their continuing agenda to enrich themselves at the expense of everyone else in this country.

So march right out there and shoot yourselves in the feet a few more times, Tax Day Tea Partiers! Call the liberals the evil menace, the very people who are trying to re-establish a modicum of balance in American society. Call President Obama a socialist, when he is far from one and when you don’t even know the meaning of the word socialist. Confuse Hitler’s National Socialism with democratic socialism and continue to support social Darwinism. Go ahead. Continue to spend 37 cents out of each tax dollar murdering innocents across the world in support of the agenda of the multi-national corporations. Suffer because the health system in the United States is broken. Be proud of the fact that the United States, with 5% of the world’s population, has 25% of the world’s prisoners. Endorse torture. Call for an end to the Federal Reserve System and demand that the IRS be abolished. Call for the enactment of a Fair Tax that is anything but fair. Focus on everything but closing the loopholes awarded to the wealthy by the current tax system. Rail against the re-distribution of wealth. Listen to every word that Joe the Plumber has to say. After all, he is vastly more educated than all those elitist holders of Ph.D degrees, right? While you are at it, keep undermining the educational system in this country. We don’t need no stinkin’ education! We learn everything we need to know from Joe the Plumber and Rush Limbaugh, right? Do everything except focus on the agenda of the power elite and corporate America. Keep those guns blazing and accuse immigrants, homosexuals, liberals, scientists, environmentalists, Muslims, atheists, secular humanists and anyone else you perceive as elitists of being your enemies. Do not, under any circumstances, question anything that your leaders tell you.

Am I bitter? Yes, and rightfully so. I just cannot, for the life of me, understand how so many Americans are so blind to the ways that they are manipulated by the power elite. Why do you continue to support those who are screwing you??


Fair Taxes and Tea Parties — 2 Comments

  1. Hi Jeff,

    I’ve been working my way forward from your post “A Proposal for Tea Party Attendees” to here. Thought you might want some perspective from someone involved in the “Austrian Economics” crowd.

    I believe you’re correct about a lot of the corporate/establishment involvement you saw with the Tea Parties, but the cause and effect is wrong. I think there is a grass-roots movement of people who hold the “small-government” philosophy to which the Republicans give lip-service. But the Bush administration has proven conclusively to them that the Republican leaders are only interested in manipulating the grass-roots so they can run the empire. The leaders are trying to herd these disenchanted supporters back into the old, comfortable political machine they can control.

    That’s why Fox is throwing money behind the Tea Parties and encouraging Glenn Beck to play to the radical audience and letting the Ron Paul supporters have their own (web only: freedomwatchonfox.com) show. Fox sees a parade and are trying to jump in front of it. The Republican leadership are trying to do the same thing–trying to gauge exactly how much power they have to give up so they can still hold onto something.

    At the same time, the left-oriented media are trying to dismiss the rebellion as just more corporate manipulation so that their followers don’t ask questions.

    But, for those of us (if I can characterize you and I both that way) that like to ask questions, this is a chance to re-examine everything. In this last year, I’ve seen fundamental Christians speak out against the drug war, I’ve seen Iraqi War Veterans defending Code Pink protesters from horseback police, and I’ve heard Naomi Wolfe and Lew Rockwell surprising each other with the views they share.

    I see that we already read some of the same blogs–Global Guerillas and P2P Foundation (you should also check out openfarmtech.org). I often think that what is happening in a larger sense is that our culture is changing from the broadcast oriented structure I grew up with (three TV news networks and one government run ‘alternative’) to a peer-to-peer structure where people can communicate and cooperate directly without having their opinions shaped and filtered through centralized control.

    Keep well–I look forward to meeting you one day.

  2. Is it the gang mentality Jeff? They feel safer in their group? Like a bunch of sheep. They’re brainwashed. There is comfort and protection in following along. And the leaders, many religious leaders on TV or the radio, are very fatherly. People who question or disagree are ousted and therefore at risk. That’s why I’m afraid to speak up where I live in “radical right wing world.” But I will. I’m no follower. My mother always told me, “Be a leader, not a follower.” I have a brain and so I use it. And as we know, I might not be liked sometimes because of my politics or religion. Some people are too weak or brainwashed to buck the system.

    That is so true–deregulation plays right into the hands of corporate America and the manipulators of Wall Street. I’m as frustrated as you are. A bunch of sheep voting against themselves.


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