Oregon, USA
December 01
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Editor’s Pick
APRIL 15, 2009 8:30PM

GOP: Send Tea Bags to Obama

Rate: 15 Flag

Eugene Weekly 

This AP news release reports that House Republican leader John Boehner has gotten wind of the fact that Homeland Security is monitoring the rising right-wing rebellion groups for possible recruitment of veterans for violent extremism as a risk to national security. Proving that scoundrels often hide behind the flag, Boehner said that the intelligence assessment had insulted our veterans because it had identified that returning veterans were at risk of being recruited by these groups or might commit violent acts on their own. 

As harsh as it may sound, this particular war has produced an inordinately large number of returning veterans with mental disorders such as PTSD and organic disorders like Traumatic Brain Injury.  Assimilation back into society can be very difficult under these circumstances.

The report also cites the downturn in the economy and the election of the first black president as possible impetus to national security threats. How long after the end of the Civil War did it take for the Ku Klux Klan to organize? I don’t want to have that again in my country.

I am wondering why the GOP House Leader didn’t raise a cry when Homeland Security targeted a couple of Oregon forest dwellers who wanted the state to stop spraying herbicides in the ditches near their woodland home and children's schools. These two and a few friends show up at parades, hold signs, and ask people to sign petitions.

Calling themselves the Pitchfork Rebellion, Van Omum and his wife caught the eye of the Bush administration’s Homeland Security which identified them as nascent domestic terrorists. HS was on the job during the Eugene Celebration, and the result is still in the courts. (In short, HS agents called Van Omum, who was walking in the parade, over to the sidewalk where they took him down and began tasering him. A young bystander, who had gotten his Eagle Scout badge just a few years before, knew a bad thing when he saw it and knocked the agent off Omum. Like I said, it’s still in the courts.)

So, it’s not just radical right wing groups that have attracted the attention of Homeland Security that has so outraged the Repubicans. Is this woodland-loving Oregonian couple dangerous?  I doubt it, but then it’s not my job to decide. However, I do know that the rise in the rebellious rallies coupled with the rise in gun purchases cannot mean anything good. If these two forest folk can be monitored, so can the Tea Parties.

The GOP errs when they encourage the Tea Party groups as Michael Steele confirmed by emailing me today that I should send a virtual tea bag to Obama I suppose they see it as courting their base; however, they should look at the parallels between how their encouragement looks a lot like radicalism. They use our most cherished moments in history, like the Boston Tea Party, to fool good Americans into fighting for the right of the wealthy to pay little taxes so they can pay more. It is shameful.

I am glad that Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano has a clear vision of her mission which she stated unequivocally in response:

“Let me be very clear — we monitor the risks of violent extremism taking root here in the United States," Napolitano said in a statement. "We don't have the luxury of focusing our efforts on one group; we must protect the country from terrorism whether foreign or homegrown, and regardless of the ideology that motivates its violence."


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Great post .. Very scary when it all boil down..Just the thought of what could really happen..
I hope every single "tea party' participant has a good, long case of diarrhea. Unbelievable.
Yeah, it's what they do best. When chaos is a friend, you don't care if it spirals out of control.

Hi fireeyes,
Pretty scary and I'm glad that they have a handle on it.

Truly. And tea is such a soothing drink...such a shame.
Stupidity can turn scary. This is getting out of control...
It must be hell to be on the sharp end of the very stick you whittled.

There'd be a hell a lot of irony in the conservative behavior and feelings if it weren't so infuriating!
I want your sentence embroidered on a pillow! It's perfect!

"It must be hell to be on the sharp end of the very stick you whittled."

Dr. Spudman,
Hey guy. Yeah, just when I thought strange things like sarah palin were over.
I find it so ironic that when the government keeps its eye on violent right-wing extremism, the Republican base and their cheerleaders at F*cked News immediately jump up and identify themselves as the targets, why are these guys so eager to associate themselves with Timothy McVeigh, Eric Rudolph, etc?
Good morning, Roy!
Yes, they do seem eager to identify with the maddening crowd. To embrace madness and hatred says volumes about what they really stand for, doesn't it? The dumb vote is still out there.
Remember during the election when their stirring the racist pot got out of their control? That is true madness.
Boehner has tanning radiation sickness. I grew up during the red scare days. It sure feels like Santayana wrote - condemned to repeat and all.
They're getting the Tim McVeighs of America all riled and nothing good is to come from this. Great post Steph. I'd say Boehner had a cup or two of tea himself yesterday.
I'm still wondering who's protesting. I just started making about $30 more per paycheck, and was pretty happy about it. It helps. Since most middle class people are having their taxes cut, who's protesting? CEOs?
On John Stewart last night, he was pointing out the hypocricy of Fox News. FOX was claiming that they are not "sponsoring any Tea Parties" yet Stewart highlighted the wording on their own backdrop as saying "FOX News Tea Parties." The network had four different correspondants in the field at different parties around the country. Each person was imploring viewers to "come out and join us! Let your voice be heard!" I don't believe that any "party" got more than a few hundred folks to turn up, thankfully.

Can you imagine the buzz it would have created if CNN at some point in time would have organized an "anti-war" party during the Bush administration and encouraged folks to "come out and join us!"

Since when are our public news networks in the practice of CREATING news rather than just reporting it?
The right has spent years learning how to ratchet up the fear factor in order to control. Then out of frustration with the economy (yes thats right! frustration with the economy!) people voted for a Democrat. Now the Gingrich/Delay arm of the right is whipping up the same lunies who attended Sarah Palin rallys to scream about the government being taken away by facist socialist gunhating commie coddling gay loving Obama. Give me a break!!!!

Yet there isnt anything wrong with a little caution. These rallies could easily be turned into an American Krystalnacht. We already have the Gov of TX openly advocating treason - however they joined the Union, the right of seccession was settled at Appomatox Court House some 150 years ago. Limbaugh is coddling pirates and Beck is foaming at the mouth about guns and pretending Obama will pour gasoline on Americans while he begins a comedy show ripping off Thomas Paine. There are real live certifiable nuts out there, and they are dangerous.
Funny... Yeah, more of the same repugnican tactics by labeling and defining it for those who won't look for themselves. Like Noahvose says, you'd think they could at least look at their checks.

Hey, Kinda,
Yep, getting them all stirred up. MSNBC reported last night that there are so many issues that they are actually thinly veiled anti_Obama rallies.

Hello Heron!
Fox is a news SHOW that is subject to ratings. And, like I said above, they know their target audience and what they want to hear. Truly awful.

It is scary to see it winding up. I haven't watch the news footage about it. It's all the old bad things.
"...regardless of the ideology..."
Its about time!

Great article o'steph!
Thanks for this O'S. Rated.
Janet N is a breath of fresh air---because all the damage that needs to be undone is pretty overwhelming---excellent piece Steph
I think we need to start really talking about this problem is just this way, very openly. Because that's the only way to defuse it, to open it up. To clearly state nationally that conservatives are baiting their crazier constituents to do something wrong. Good post.
O'K, Thanks. Yes, regardless of how the repugnicans like these particular domestic terrorists...

Thanks for all you do as well.

Thanks, guy.

So right! I can barely stand those emails I get from Michael Steele but feel I need to know what particular poison they are peddling this week. With Cheney admitting to breaking international law, things are bound to get pretty interesting.

I cross posted this on wordpress to see how that goes. I'm trying to get over to John Zogby's blog but have not quite figured it out yet.