To suggest that the Tea Party exists to express dissatisfaction with both major parties and the national security state, and that Obama's presidency just so happened to coincide with the rise of this movement, stretches even the most active imagination.
This week on FAIR TV: Is Syria Iraq all over again? Plus a look at the CNN "debate" over military strikes that didn't have much debate, and the Wall Street Journal sees a big Tea Party "comeback."
Here's something you don't see very often–a progressive person of color on a Sunday morning chat show. There was Van Jones on ABC's This Week on April 1. Also there? Right-wing firebrand Ann Coulter. Huh. But it was something that Jones said that caught my attention. Well, you know, I think that probably the majority of people who are in the Democratic Party, progressive independents or what I would call post-hope Democrats–we're Democrats, we did the vote and hope. And when we–what happened was, we sat back and we let the Tea Party crowd dominate the protests world in the […]
The Republican Party is in something of a bind. Many oppose White House efforts to extend–and perhaps increase–a Social Security payroll tax cut next year. This might sound strange, since if conservatives are supposed to be fond of anything, it's tax cuts. So they have some explaining to do. They're given a valuable assist when journalists, thanks to the conventions of corporate media, will print their words with little in the way of critical analysis. Take this from today's Washington Post (12/7/11) by Rosalind Helderman: A Republican Party that has for decades benefited from a commitment to lower taxes is […]
With the bad news we've been talking about on the public broadcasting front, it's worth pointing out a bright spot: On Monday (10/24/11), Charlie Rose featured a discussion of Occupy Wall Street with Chris Hedges and Amy Goodman. Goodman made an important point about media coverage of the protests: CHARLIE ROSE: Does it have anything in common with the Tea Party? AMY GOODMAN: Well, it's interesting you ask that. When the people gathered on September 16 and 17–what, 2000 people–hardly any coverage they got. If it was 2000 Tea Party activists who gathered on Wall Street, I would dare said […]
Michael Moore on the Rachel Maddow show on MSNBC (9/19/11): Or, if you prefer reading: But last week when Wolf Blitzer and CNN had that debate, the CNN/Tea Party Express debate, and Wolf sat there and called them his partners–I just thought, this was amazing, because would you ever see the CNN nurses union debate or the CNN teachers union debate? Because I think there are a few more teachers and nurses in this country than there are members of the Tea Party. But we'll never see that in the mainstream media. And liberal organizations which have many more members […]
The New York Times reported today (9/13/11) on the controversy, citing FAIR: But the CNN debate on Monday was the first event hosted jointly by a major news organization and a Tea Party group. And their partnership left some questioning whether the network had gone too far in reaching for centrist credibility. "Is there really a need for another national cable news channel devoted to promoting far-right elements within the Republican Party?" the liberal media watchdog group FAIR said Monday in an e-mail alert to its members in which it labeled the Tea Party "a controversial political group." Jeremy Peters […]
Send a message to CNN about the cable network's partnership with the Tea Party Express, a far-right group with a history of virulent racism, to produce a Republican presidential debate: See "CNN Throws a Tea Party," FAIR's latest Action Alert. Please post copies of your messages to CNN, or comments on this Action Alert, in the comments thread below.
Jesse Jackson had some tough criticism for the Tea Party movement at a Martin Luther King event on Thursday. USA Today's Melanie Eversley covered his remarks, getting a Tea Party activist to respond to his criticism. The piece then added this, presumably in order to add some context: The group has faced criticism of being a racist group, a claim made most visibly by former National Public Radio fundraiser Ron Schiller, who was caught on hidden camera calling the group racist and xenophobic, prompting his immediate resignation. In other words, lots of people seem to hurl accusations of racism at […]
Time's Michael Crowley deserves some credit for saying this about the Tea Party movement, in his piece about how they largely won the debt standoff: The Tea Party movement has proved not only that people can have their own facts but also that they can use them to vast tactical advantage, crashing through the taboos of political convention and changing the game along the way. But in explaining the political origins of the movement, he writes: It is an article of faith in Tea Party circles that Washington and Wall Street are in bed together, colluding for power and profit […]
"Tea Party Plans Its Own Debt Panel" reads a headline in today's New York Times (6/27/11), where reporter Kate Zernike described efforts by the well-financed right-wing lobbying group FreedomWorks to organize a debt commission that will come up with yet another right-wing fiscal blueprint. They don't have a plan yet–they're merely talking about having meetings that would produce a plan: "It aims to have proposals ready by January, when the presidential campaign will draw even more attention to economic proposals." Well, they're off to a good start in the Drawing Attention department. Remember, the People's Budget of the Congressional Progressive […]