I’m not much for bandwagons, but if i was going to hop on one it would have to actually stand for something. So I’ll be skipping the whole anti-tax day for useful idiots – Celebrating the Joys of April 15
Somehow the government tax collectors have let the country get locked into the idea that April 15 is a day of sorrow and misery, the culmination of the dreaded filing of the income tax form.
But, in fact, most people who file get money back. (Cue the horns and balloons.)
And according to one much, much-quoted study by the Tax Policy Center, 47 percent of American households didn’t have to pay one cent of income tax for 2009. (Marching bands, confetti.)
Thanks to the tax credits in President Obama’s stimulus plan and other programs aimed at helping working families, couples with two kids making up to $50,000 were generally off the hook this year.
Naturally, anti-tax groups held rallies to thank the president for doing so much to reduce the burden on the half of the country least able to pay. Not.
Besides the fluoride there seems to be something in the nation’s drinking water that prevents a sizable chuck of the population from comprehending details. Fine details. Forget about it. There is a difference between these things: federal income tax and payroll taxes such as Medicare (which everyone including most conservatives/tea bags support). There is also a difference between federal withholding and state taxes and fees. Ya got a beef with your state’s taxes – well than the U.S. Capitol grounds are not the pace to hold your protest rally. I know that our Marxist Nazi Muslim socialist baby hating puppy kicking president is all powerful, but he cannot make your state lower state taxes or fees. A more thorough explanation of the Obama tax cuts and the middle-class workers they helped – Examining the Making Work Pay tax cut
The way I understand the zeitgeist of populist movements is that there has to be substantive motivations for them to start and for them to continue. They have to stand for something and be distinctive from a movement that already exists. Polling the Tea Party. Let’s forget for a moment the flawed Gallup Poll that found tea baggers about equally devided between collge and non-college educated. The NYT and Gallup do agree that economically the tea bags are doing fairly well. There is a name for people that are getting their share and whine anyway – brats. Though since the tea bags are dominated by older white males they’re just adults with a lot of misdirected anger over issues they are amazingly ignorant about. They agree the tea baggers are very similar to, surprise, the conservative movement. Not quite half want less government. A poll of a room full of liberals would probably say the same thing. The devil is in the details. Heard any tea bags complain about Halliburton or Blackwater(Xe). Anyone remember a tea bag protest against Bush when he passed that giant unfunded welfare program for big pharma called Medicare Part D. Of course there is no consistency here. Conservatives have always supported BIG government when they wrote the checks. As soon as they are on the back bench BIG government is evil. Except when you get to the specifics. Most tea nuts support Medicare and Social Security. No More Mister Nice Blog noted this from the main survey article – THREE ODD STATS FROM THAT TEA PARTY POLL — AND WHAT THEY MEAN FOR 2010
* Tea partiers are surprisingly satisfied with their own members of Congress. Among teabaggers, Congress has a whopping 1% approval rating — but when asked about their own members of Congress, the approval jumps to 40%. So obviously a lot of these people (though not quite a majority) are right-wingers in Republican districts who think their bum doesn’t need to be thrown out with all the others; they like their bum just fine.
This has been a political phenomenon forever. Everyone generally likes their Congressional rep, its the other ones that are evil. Just as people complain about pork. Bridges to nowhere in Alaska were fine with Alaskan politicians, but teachers in North Carolina who want smaller class sizes see such projects as the political pandering they are. This phenmenom is why its possible all the polls and general hand wringing about Republican gains in the mid-terms will not be the blow out so many seem to think. Congressional reps run their own races directed at their constituents. Democrats can cast and will face the biggest crop ever of extreme far Right opponents as being anti-Medicare, anti-payroll tax reduction, anti-Wall St reform, pro-lobbyists, pro back to doubling down on the polices of Bush 43 and a Republican Congress that pushed us into a war they put on the Chinese credit card and let financial institutions run wild. A good Democratic strategists could produce dozens of damning and true sound bites. The same strategist could point out the multiple surveys that show the tea baggers are guided more by anger and mysterious notions than thoughtful concerns based on facts. The Democrats could point out that as usual the Right has lots of complaints, but no concrete policy prescriptions for solving the nation’s problems. You’ve got the official leader of Senate Republicans fighting tooth and nail for Wall Str interests. You have Republicans/tea baggers being chest thumping proud that they would love to undo do the modest health care reform package and kill 45,000 American men, women and children because….because… well they just don’t like it. If Democrats lose as badly as Nate Silver and others project it will be because of two things: Democrats ran bad campaigns. Republicans and their sugar daddies overwhelmed the public with bullsh*t. More on the Fox-pushed Tea Party Express scam
I noted a few months back TPM Media’s report that the PAC that organized the Tea Party Express, a series of right-wing nationwide bus tours and rallies, had sent nearly two thirds of its spending during a recent reporting period right back to the GOP consulting firm that spawned it. Today, Politico’s Ken Vogel provides more details of the Tea Party Express’ operations, including the original memo from a consultant with the firm, Russo Marsh + Rogers, proposing its creation.
Vogel also reports that a substantial percentage of spending from the PAC, Our Country Deserves Better PAC, continues to flow directly into the coffers of Russo Marsh + Rogers. That appears to have been the intent from the beginning; Vogel reports that the firm’s operative, Joe Wierzbicki, stated in proposing the Express that it could “give a boost to our PAC and position us as a growing force/leading force as the 2010 elections come into focus.”
[ ]…In the memo, which Vogel reports was issued “just days after” last year’s April 15 tea parties, Wierzbicki lays out how the first Tea Party Express bus tour would operate, who would be invited to participate, and how they would build a fundraising campaign behind it. He also drops this little nugget (emphasis added):
The trick here is that once enough people are “buzzing” about this effort (the tour and campaign advertising, etc…) then we should hopefully start to get some mentions and possibly even promotion from conservative/pro- tea party bloggers, talk radio hosts, Fox News commentators, etc.
Republicans cannot win the mid-terms or the 2012 cycle with a plan or set of policies based on real world prescriptions and numbers. They plan to repeat the 2000 – 2004 cycle – win on repeating the same lies, distortions and weirdo conspiracy theories over and over again in an appeal to the same base beliefs that earned Glenn Beck an estimated $32 million dollars last year – the guy that admitted that anyone that listens to him is an idiot. Glenn’s income is proof that it is a mistake to underestimate idiots.