Is Racism the "Heart" of the Tea Party Movement?

When you look at this photo of a Texas-flag bedecked illiterate calling the president a "niggar" at a Tea Party rally, Rep. John Lewis's claim that he was mau-maued by racist health care protesters doesn't seem incredible. But after watching Keith Olbermann's spluttering on MSNBC last night ("If racism is not the whole of the Tea Party, it is in its heart"), reading columns by New York Times bores Bob Herbert and Paul Krugman about the Klan-like atmosphere in Washington (observed through RSS feeds on the Upper West Side), and noting the uncritical recitation of the charges from certain media outlets, I went in search of the inevitable YouTube video of the attack on Lewis.

The headline on McClatchy's dispatch eshewed the word "claim," instead declaring that "Tea party protesters scream 'nigger' at black congressman," citing Lewis as its source. Readers of the Sydney Morning Herald were told that black congressmen had to "run [a] gauntlet of racist slurs" on their way to the House. The AP accused protesters of shouting "racial epithets aimed at black members of Congress." And so on.

Again, to crib from President Obama, let me be clear: It wouldn't surprise me if an angry troglodyte shouted a racial insult at Lewis. Indeed, multiple witnesses confirm that Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) was called a "homo" by a Tea Partier, though Politico reports that he was quickly admonished by those standing nearby.

The problem, though, is that in a sea of video cameras no one caught the offending taunt. Some footage of protesters confronting Lewis can be viewed here and here. All this is rather strange considering Rep. Andre Carson's (D-Ind.) claim that the offending slur was shouted "at least 15 times." Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) heard "a chorus" of racism and claims he was spat upon. Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) one-upped Cleaver, claiming to "have heard things today that I have not heard since March 15, 1960, when I was marching to get off the back of the bus."

Perhaps it is my instinct to distrust politicians (an instinct the media typically avails themselves of—except in situations like these), and especially politicians trying to push through health care legislation, but these claims seem suspicious. It would be useful if those covering the story asked if the shouts were from just one jackass or it constituted a "chorus"? Was it really as bad as the desegregation battles of 1960's South Carolina? If someone did shout a racial slur at Lewis—and again, this seems entirely possible, though no one has corroborated it and the paucity of video evidence is curious—it is certainly deserving of strong condemnation, though hardly proves Olbermann's assertion that racism is at "the heart" of the Tea Party movement.

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  • ||

    In all seriousness, though, the only unforgivable bit is that they live on the Upper West Side...

    *barf

  • BS Flag||

    Raised!

  • ||

    "It wouldn't surprise me if an angry troglodyte shouted a racial insult at Lewis."

    I wouldn't either. I also wouldn't be surprised if some liberal mole showed up and did the same to discredit the rally.

  • Horselips||

    And I don't care who did it, or whether it even happened. Worrying about somebody getting their feelings hurt is somewhere below making sure the trash has been taken out on my list of priorities.

  • ||

    Exactly. Someone called Emmanuel Clever the N word. Therefore Obamacare must be a good idea. Yeah, that makes sense.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    The whole thing was a staged stunt by the Dems in the first place.

    The attempt was to create an equivalency between the creation of the new entitlement and civil rights.

  • sage||

    Well, I could see that. I know that when anyone without health care comes into my store I make them use separate but equal bathrooms.

  • ||

    Where is your store?

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Note that Cleaver decided to not press charges. Probably one of his constituents doing a false-flag maneuver.

  • ||

    There's something highly ironic that the people who spent the last year calling us "teabaggers" are oh-so-sensitive to namecalling. Indeed, namecalling so soft that none of the fifty-or-so videos caught it. Poor, poor snowflakes!

  • ||

    The impulse to deny the event in question at least recognizes it's socially condemned. That's a start.

  • marlok||

    It really doesn't matter whether it happened or not. The story got reported, will never be retracted (and it wouldn't matter if it did), and has served its purpose of discrediting the protest as a bunch of racist loons. That's all Krugman and co really care about.

  • Horselips||

    Discredited in whose eyes? I doubt it was discredited in the eyes of anyone who was ever actually a supporter.

  • Random Dude||

    Agreed,

    the problem the NY times folks people have is that *lots* of people showed up to these things.

    From the crowd at mine, it was veterans with their caps, flag waving grandmas, small business owners, and pissed-off young people. They all were extremely well behaved despite being enraged.

    What the NYTimes and their ilk forget is that these people (especially the small-business owners) have a much more disproportionate influence and visibility in the community than their union heavies or anti-globalization hippies.

    When everyone hears that these are a bunch of racist, ignorant hicks, many people can point to a well-regarded person that they personally know that attended these rallies as a counterexample.

    I hope they keep calling people racists. That way they will have already shot their wad when the language of "states rights" pops up. The race card is becoming not only old, but absolutely rank and toxic for those who use it.

  • Art-P.O.G.||

    Agreed.

  • ||

    the grandmas enjoy their medicare and social security; the veterans have good tricare & medical benefits; all these hypocrites should tear up their ss checks and benefits as they are so afraid of "socialism".In 1935 the Republicans called social security "the lash of the dictator"--

  • ||

    ROFLMAO--Ah yeah, those great Veteran bennies. I would gladly give my VA healthcare to any of the asswipes behind Obamacare. Go get a disability for your country and try to get help through the VA. Don't generalize vets opposed to Obamacare a hypocrites, quite the contrary--we ARE EXPERTS on how social healthcare DOESN'T WORK, brainiac.

  • ||

    Random Dude,

    I think that it is interesting that you mention anti-globalization hippies...

    Hmm ....let's see how does globalization which equals=outsourcing of American jobs sound patriotic? How does that help you and your tea party brothers and sisters??? I would love to hear...

    The funniest thing ever is middle class Republicans!! ha ha what an laugh!
    The Republicans support big business which supports jobs overseas you idiots!!! Your middle and lower middle class jobs!!

    Why don't you guys wake up and think about the real issues!! You can't take back America if you are supporting business that invests in jobs abroad!!!

    Wake up and educate yourselves!!

    Do you really think that the wealthy (including the politicians) really give a toot about you and the rest of the tea party idiots...they just care about protecting their money which most of by the way is kept abroad in offshore accounts to avoid taxes!!
    You people are hilarious!!:)

    Outsourcing baby ...outsourcing...you guys must just love supporting the ones who are making laws that ship our jobs abroad...!!!
    Woohoo! yay for globalization and the loss of the American middle class...

    Hilarious!!

  • ||

    Media Matters and Democratic Underground had several operatives there, posing as Tea Partiers. As for anyone shouting racial epithets, the police have confirmed that it's a lie.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Not surprising. Then again, it's okay when MM and DU and MooOn.bOrg do the astroturfing...

  • Ted||

    DAF, can you provide URL for "police have confirmed that it's a lie"? I very much want to see that.

  • Pink Cosmotarian||

    "Raaaaacist!!"

  • ||

    And Olberman is insane. So, it is not like he needs any corroboration to say something.

  • JB||

    It's way beyond calling wolf at this point.

    People are called racists for not wanting the US to become communist. We are 5% away (45% of GDP spending controlled by the government).

    At some point, more and more people are going to say: "Fine, I'm a racist, where can I pick up a noose?"

  • ||

    you are revolting. This is a great, centrist bill--many ideas in it came from Bob Dole, Richard Nixon--do you even know what a communist is? Americans will love this bill, just like they like social security and medicare.

  • André||

    I'm not sure if your comments are meant as a troll or sarcasm. Text is a terrible medium for picking up on subtleties of speech.

  • Thumbs up||

    Does Olberman have credibility anywhere... with anyone?

  • ||

    Olberman is the only voice from the left. Limbaugh, Beck et al rule the Airwaves from the right. Yes, Olberman is credible mostly.

  • WTF||

    Some of them deserve to be spat upon.

  • ||

    Further, this bill is really unpopular. I know it makes liberals feel better about themselves. But don't they realize that calling the majority of the country racists doesn't help them politically?

  • WTF||

    See, you're just too ignorant to recognize your own racism.

  • WTF||

    Oh, and - "mau-maued"? There's an obscure (these days) reference.

  • ||

    Is it? Hasn't been that long.

  • WTF||

    I dunno, but I'm thinking ask most people under 30 and they'll not have a clue and likely will never have heard the expression before.

  • Tom Wolfe||

    Damn know-nothing kids with their iPicks and their Facedbooks…

  • ||

    And their iFads.

  • ||

    I'm sure that's true, but the uprising happened before I was born, too.

  • Jeffersonian||

    Mau-mauing the tax suckers.

    (With all apologies to Tom Wolfe)

  • Andrew Ian Dodge||

    It shows that the tea party movement has truly arrived. They are trying to scare people off becoming involved. The fact that there is no evidence it happened does not seem to bother the MSM.

    I was disgusted to see the Republican Party speaking up about it despite their being no evidence it happened.

  • ||

    Well, it's actually good for the movement to forcefully repudiate anyone that does it, IMO.

  • Jim Treacher||

    And they should just assume that any accusation to that effect is based in fact?

  • Random Dude||

    I'd call it political "reflexing."

    If I were confronted with a question like that as a politician, and I also had no first-hand information about it, I'd probably do the same thing.

    I think we've become hyper-aware now to the point we see the "narrative" being crafted better than the politicians. The hyper-directionalized, shall we call it, vector journalism, has now allowed us to ascertain falsehoods through a type of comparative bullshitting sieve. These guys almost certainly are not "with it" enough in technology to expect that when all the MSM is lying to them, a great deal of the population is already-informed about it.

    Also, if you're actually Jim Treacher, I love your blog.

  • Jim Treacher||

    "Who would claim to be that... who was not?"

  • ||

    Cruelness towards someone with Parkinson's, hard to deny from videotape, suggests this problem is broader than racism, but an ethos of thoroughgoing bullying. Even smart leaders get bullied. 3rd graders are often more admirable.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    I'm convinced many people in power - politicians, high-powered attorneys, and other assorted vermin - had their heads stuck into toilets in grade school, and vowed to get revenge by becoming powerful.

    Some of them might have even gotten "swirlies" in college.

    Now, that's just one example. Maybe it's dated - who sticks a kid's head in a toilet these days? But you get the gist, I hope: Kid gets picked on, doesn't have what it takes to fight back (and nowadays, a kid who defends himself from the playground bully gets sent to the school shrink just as quick as the bully)... and grows up vowing to get back at those who tortured him by gaining control over peoples' lives.

    Dennis Kucinich comes to mind. Newt Gingrich, too.

  • ||

    I must say I was wondering "where's the video" when I was reading those reports too.

  • ||

    I think liberals know in the back of their heads they are going to get killed in November. To be a liberal is to make the political personal. Their entire world view and politics is based on their own quest for self actualization. They have to have myths to believe in. They can never believe they were wrong or made a mistake. Instead, any setback has to be the product of the malevolent forces they are fighting. And of course the greatest of those forces is "racism". These charges are just setting up the fairy tale that they passed this great healthcare bill only to see racist America punish them for it.

  • ||

    Prophetic. :)

  • ¢||

    It wouldn't surprise me if an angry troglodyte shouted a racial insult at Lewis.

    It should. No one does shit like that.

    And there aren't any fucking troglodytes. But it wouldn't surprise me if a cosmotarian were a crypto-nazi.

  • ||

    That is a good point. In my whole life I have never once heard a white man yell the N word at a black man. I mean never. I have heard white people use the word in private. And I have heard black people scream it at each other. But I have never once heard a white person hurl such a word loudly and in public. It just doesn't happen anymore. If something like that had happened, it would have been so shocking and so out of the ordinary everyone who heard it would remember hearing it and gasped.

    I call bullshit on the whole story.

  • ||

    Living in the deep south (as you can see by my screen name), I have heard it uttered in private. But never have I heard it screamed at someone in public (except, as you mention, by one black person speaking to another). Even down here it is frowned upon by the majority.

  • ||

    I agree. I have speant a great deal of time in LA (Grand Isle, Lake Bruin, Breaux Bridge, NO, etc.) and have heard it used often, but never shouted out.

  • ||

    I am from the Midwest and it is also frowned upon there. And that is not because people are not racist. It is just because that kind of shit just doesn't happen anymore outside of liberals' imagination.

  • ||

    I have been called a "fuckinghaole" (one word) multiple times in public in Hawaii by racists who don't consider themselves racist. I have never heard anyone who is not black shout the N-word in public.

    Anecdotal evidence, sure ...

  • Black Panther||

    Crackery-assed cracker muthafucka.

  • dude from AL||

    Same here. I've never heard it used in public. It would be.....rude, I guess.

  • ||

    I hear the N-word every day more times than I can count, but then I ride in and out of downtown everyday on the ghetto bus.

    So my question has always been, why can the use of a specific word be limited to a specific population? And don't tell me the "R" is not pronounced because that's just bullshit.

  • T||

    Damn, sheltered upbringings. I've seen it, and I'm not that old. Admittedly, I hang out with an unusually large concentration of offensive bastards, but still. It can't be that uncommon. Maybe y'all just hang out with a better class of degenerate than I do.

  • ||

    When and where have you seen it? Seriously, you have seen a white person yell nigger at a black person in public? Loudly? Where and when did this happen? And what was the fallout?

  • T||

    A representative example: It was '92, in Fayetteville, NC. Some guy had walked up the street to tell us to turn the music down (Ministry, making the bay window in the front of the house vibrate). About 6 of us were standing in the front lawn, very drunk. He, very politely, made the request and one of my roommates turned around, looked at him, and said "Fuck you, nigger. Go home." So, our neighbor stood there for a second and then went home.

    Admittedly, I haven't heard it used as an actual racial slur to a black person since I got out of the Army, but during the time I was in the Army? Oh, yes, indeedy. Mudshark was another good insult from back in the day.

    Hell, right after the election I saw a truck in the parking lot of Gander Mountain with a bumper sticker that said "Fuck Obama! Niggers!!!"

  • ||

    I couldn't imagine feeling anything other than wanting to crawl under a rock if one of my friends did that to somebody.

  • Sean Healy||

    1985, Long Island, in a public park on a summer night. My friends and I were listening to Run DMC and breakdancing (I know, I know). A middle aged guy shouted 'turn that fucking nigger music off' at us. Nobody challenged him, and the place was crowded. I'm white, so this isn't exactly the kind of example you're looking for. But I've got lots of examples of public racism from my childhood, and I grew up in the liberal northeast.

  • Vanilla Ice||

    "I'm white,"

    No, really?

  • ||

    But that was over twenty years ago...recently?

  • ||

    I think the mere fact that you remember these specific events proves they are rare indeed. If something is really common, it usually condenses into a blur. But if something is uncommon or rare, you would be more likely to remember it because of the "shock and awe" of hearing it. That being said, I did hear it during high school fights or whatever, along with Mexican slurs, which were more common in AZ. But it was rare and wasn't really a huge deal. The people who said it didn't have many friends to say the least.

  • ||

    If it makes you feel better, I've had "white boy" hollered at me from across the street I was walking down.

  • ||

    Going to high school in Delaware I heard white kids and men yelling racist things including the n-word at our black running back while we played football on a regular basis.

    HOWEVER
    It was recently reported that at the New Hampshire state house a bunch of white power people came out to support a Tea Party rally against the health mandate bill, yet somehow no one took a cell phone picture or video of this shocking event - it was simply reported by the major liberal interest groups in the state. I smell a rat.

  • ||

    In New Hampshire!!! That's crazy. I live in North Carolina, rural North Carolina and I've never seen anything like that. Supposively there is an active KKK group in the area but I've never seen them or heard about any meetings.

  • Maureen Dowd||

    The protesters shouted "Kill the Bill!", when Congress didn't. But, fair or not, what I heard was an unspoken word in the air: "Kill the nigger, Bill!"

    I only hope the Secret Service can find this "Bill" before it's too late.

  • ||

    I've been thinking the same thing. Me and my husband have been joking about how there must be a wormhole somewhere in D.C. to 1950's Alabama.

    I live in the South and even in private, saying the n-word is looked down on. I can't believe that people could be yelling it in public and not have the entire crowd freak out and harshly reprimand whoever was saying it.

    I'm generally not one for conspiracy theories but I've noticed that whenever a conservative group is decredited by the media (or even on blogs) the race card is always pulled out. Not just against social conservatives or Tea Parties, but at Libertarians in general and people like Ron and Rand Paul. I've seen it in too many different places for me to not suspect this is more than just isolated events.

  • MIchael Richards||

    You should come to one of my stand up comedy shows.

  • Zeb||

    "And there aren't any fucking troglodytes."

    Sure there are. I have seen people living in caves before.

  • ||

    agent provacatuer...that is standard operating procedure. White dudes don't shout the n word in public...nobody likes that shit.

  • ||

    At most, he ran a gantlet. Running a gauntlet of racial slurs is very improbable.

  • ||

    No worries, J Mann - "running a gauntlet of racial slurs" is acceptable, although "running a gauntlet of people hurling racial slurs" would have been both more accurate and less elegant.

    Running a section of overlapping railroad tracks, as you suggest, just won't do. No, it just won't.

  • ||

    If an Olbermann spouts nonsense and no one is watching MSNBC, does it make a sound?

  • Jeffersonian||

    Surely there are many, many instances we can check to answer this burning question.

  • wayne||

    Yes, it sounds like a tree falling in a deserted forest.

  • ||

    Only when it is reprinted here and my mind is allowed to give it a horrid life of its own.

  • Maurice||

    The Texas flag shirt guy in the photo you linked to is Dale Robertson who keeps telling the media that he is a a "founder" of the Tea Party movement and a "leader" etc, except that none of the Tea Party groups want anything to do with him.

    Google him, he is a fraud and a con man.

  • Megan ||

    I am pretty sure his sign is equating tax payers (ie. himself) to n-words and congress to slave owners... Not sure where you got the idea that he was calling the president an n-word.

  • SIV||

    Not sure where you got the idea that he was calling the president an n-word.

    You can't expect accuracy in a Michael Moynihan post.

  • ||

    Megan and SIV - Like what you folks said.

  • ||

    "When you look at this photo of a Texas-flag bedecked illiterate calling the president a "niggar" at a Tea Party rally..."

    I think that was a really stupid sign to make, but I think you're flat wrong about what that sign says.

    Just looking at the sign, it says...

    "Congress = Slave Owner
    Tax Payer = Niggar"

    So, it doesn't say what you're saying it says...

    He didn't call the president a "Niggar" there. He said Congress was treating the tax payers like their "Niggar".

    I would never use that word on a sign or anywhere else, but it just doesn't say what you're saying it says. And I think we can make the same point minus that distortion.

  • ||

    Moynihan's own literacy isn't quite up to snuff.

  • George Carlin||

    We're all Nixon's niggers now.

  • Andy||

    The sign says:
    "Congress = Slave Owner. Tax Payer = Niggar"
    Where did he call the President a Nigger?

  • Christopher Renner||

    Not to defend the guy in the linked photo, but his sign doesn't appear to call the president a "niggar", but the taxpayers.

  • ||

    A common tactic used by the Nazis when they were coming to power in the 1920s and early 30s was to send plants to opposing party rallies to do outrageous thing. One tactic involved having SA people blend into a crowd of opposing supporters and hurl a bottle or attack Nazi counter demonstrations thus giving the Nazis a ready made excuse to beat the shit out of the other party while propagandizing about the other side's thuggery.

    Feel free to Godwin me. But those are the facts. And I don't doubt for a moment that the SEIU is going to put pants in these rallies to do stupid things.

  • BakedPenguin||

    You think there's going to be a fire in the Capitol started by a mentally challenged Tea Partier?

  • ||

    I don't think they are that bad. But they are not above using the same tactics.

  • BakedPenguin||

    Given that it's a fast track way to discredit your opponents, it wouldn't surprise me at all if they had some provocateurs shouting crap like this.

    Even actual racists are generally well aware of the inflammatory nature and results of the "N" word. That they would use it so brazenly, in a situation where (the healthcare bill) there is no real racial component, strikes me as odd, to say the least.

    I can also add my anecdotal evidence to the others who haven't heard the word uttered publicly by whites in a long, long time. The last time I can remember was in 1990. I was called a "N-lover" for participating in a student protest at FSU to get the university to divest from South Africa, and some idiots shouted it from a moving car at night.

  • ||

    Even actual racists are generally well aware of the inflammatory nature and results of the "N" word. That they would use it so brazenly, in a situation where (the healthcare bill) there is no real racial component, strikes me as odd, to say the least.


    I agree with this. At least on anything more than an isolated scale. And in any isolated incident that person would get shouted down. And that's under the assumption that every last one of them was more racist than average (if such a determination can even exist).

    I don't think it means there were plants, and it's possible there was an isolated incident. It's possible a confirmation bias thing happened where something else was said and in the din it got misheard. I suppose it's possible that a mob mentality took over and the slurs came raining down, but then we would likely have more evidence of it. Lots of things are possible.

    All of it is besides the point. Every last one of them could be klansmen descended from Hitler and Goebbels and they could still be right about the health care bill.

    Judge arguments on their merits, not on the identities of the people making the argument.

  • Syd Henderson||

    And when you find some evidence of this, let us know. Until then, it's bullshit.

  • Syd Henderson||

    Referring to John's comment.

  • ||

    I would say the "Tea Party" candidate in Nevada that no one has ever heard of and no one will claim is evidence. I would also say the guy with the Texas flag who claims to be the "founder of the Tea Party movement' but again no one in the movement seems to know or claim is evidence of this. Where did these guys come from? And why is it that there seems to be people doing these things that have no past or connection to the movement?

  • ||

    I think the chances of these being plants are very high. It was a common tactic used by liberals in the 1960s. Why would they not do the same now?

  • ||

    left astroturd plant... acorn alinski tactic 101

  • ed||

    The AP accused protesters of shouting "racial epithets aimed at black members of Congress."

    Anyone else notice that at least half the national cable-news punditry has denounced the "tea-baggers" for their racial "epitaphs"? Freudian slips, maybe?

  • Z||

    The worst part of that photo, for me as a Christian, is that the Texan is wearing a "man of faith" hat. He should be ashamed for being such a bad witness for Christ.

  • Mike M.||

    Since when do members of Congress make a habit of walking directly through hostile crowds of protesters?

    Reality check time folks: we peon citizens don't get that close to a member of Congress any more unless he or she wants it to happen.

    I don't know for sure if someone in the crowd yelled out a racist epithet or not, but that is precisely what those members of the Congressional Black Caucus were hoping would happen.

  • ||

    Race whores, all.

  • ||

    My "liberal" friends eat up stuff like the lies Herbert repeated. Conservatives lap up unsupported claims by Hannity.

    Of course it is a perfect example of why I don't bother with news or especially editorial pages, nor do I bother with Reason articles without links to evidence.

    Sometimes I am quite sad at the lack of commitment to science and reason.

  • Flyover Country||

    Drink!

  • Andy||

    Will there be a retraction regarding the Texan?

  • Michael Ejercito||

    David Duke opposed the invasion of Iraq .

    Following Keith Olbermann's reasoning, racism is at the hart of the antiwar movement.

  • josey||

    "David Duke opposed the invasion of Iraq. So racism, Sir, is at the heart of the libertarian fringe wing of the antiwar movement."

    There ya go -- the KO logic you were pining for.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    If I had been there I would have called the dems something far more accurate:

    Communist Traitors.

  • Jeffersonian||

    That's merely descriptive.

  • ||

    (1) Without video evidence that a racial slur was shouted, I am highly skeptical that it occurred.

    (2) Without the identity of whoever might have shouted a slur, I am highly skeptical that it wasn't a plant.

    That is all.

  • ||

    the true colors of the tea baggers are coming out and their not red.white or blue

  • T||

    purple, green, and teal?

  • ||

    Shut up you fucking troll. The vote Sunday really brought you losers out. It is like an entire race of Steve Smith like man raping ape men has been let lose on Reason.

    And at least troll under one name there Sy.

  • ||

    Whose red, white, and blue is it, then?

  • Mikey||

    Grammar SLAM!!!

  • JSinAZ||

    Another mischosen homonym moron. Just cause spell check says OK, doesn't mean it's right, dickhead.

  • ||

    Man I love this place--it's such a rare combination of intellect and profanity! No, seriously, I love it! :)

  • Some Guy||

    I'll bet a dollar that Mr. Texan's sign originally said:

    Taxpayer = Moran

    Which is how I feel every day when I think about how we got into this mess. I'm sure that Congress and Obama agree that taxpayers are indeed morans. And since I mentioned Obama in a negative light and agree with some Tea Party stances, I am necessarily a racist.

  • OMG||

    Saw a bumper sticker today that said "Born in Freedom, Killed by Taxes"

  • JSinAZ||

    Maybe you meant "maroon"? That would work, and so would moron. Moran is that Va. congressman who may be be a moron but his name is not quite a synonym yet - but he's working on that as hard as he can.

  • ||

  • JSinAZ||

    Jeezus wept.

  • ||

    That's how it's pronounced in the Midwest. :)

  • ||

    What is needed is a serious beat down the next time it happens. I win whether the dude's a union thug or a TP discrediting racist.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Both, Mr. Ard. That's the answer.

  • Max||

    "Perhaps it is my instinct to distrust politicians..."

    No, fuckstick, it's your instinct to keep your ideological blinders on at all costs.

  • Warty||

    Oh, you'll be popular around here. Stick around.

  • ||

    STEVE SMITH HAVE CRUSH ON MAX. LOVES LITTLE ASSHOLES TO DEATH!

  • ||

    Am I missing something. Who's Steve Smith?

  • Warty||

    He's a rapist and a sasquatch. Check under your bed.

  • ||

    O_O

  • ||

    as opposed to putting your trust in politicians, really?

  • Jim Treacher||

    Max wants us to trust politicians. He's also a racist.

  • ||

    So speaketh the objective mind...

  • whatevehs||

    w/o evidence, I'm skeptical it WAS a plant. w/o video I'm skeptical teabaggers would post something self-detracting. "Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence."

  • sage||

    True, but if they make the claim it really is up to them to provide evidence. Burden of proof and all.

  • ||

    So the teapartiers are 'guilty till proven innocent', eh? Lord knows those congressmen haven't gotten any mileage or anything out of this story...

  • ||

    I was at the capitol during the rally. I came with a large group and we were spread out on all sides of the building. I didn't hear anything about this on the bus home and I'm sure I would have if someone had heard or seen anything like it.

    Until I see or hear some documentation, I don't believe it happened. If I do see documentation, I will still strongly suspect that it was a Nancy Pelosi plant in the crowd. That woman is smart and completely without a scruple.

    I am 45 years old and grew up down south and I have never, ever heard anyone shout out that word. I can't even remember the last time I heard it, other than on TV and spoken by a black person. If people still use it, they must only do it in private. Believe me, it is not socially acceptable.

    Just because we're Southern doesn't mean we're stupid rednecks. I do wonder what the world looks like from liberal eyes. Are they that bad themselves that they project it onto us or do they just really, really believe that we're all racists? Sad.

  • ||

    Here is a take from Joel Pollak, the Republican running in my district, on the issue.

    On the whole, I'd say Mr. Pollak's view is rather balanced.

    http://biggovernment.com/jpoll.....to-insult/

  • Colin||

    It seems very odd that someone would shout something like that -- even if he or she was a racist. I mean, they must realize that would demean the movement.

    That's why I think they were plants.

    It's even odder that there's no video. But it would be odder still if all those congressmen were lying about something like that.

    If I recall correctly, at one moment Yahoo was reporting racist taunts in its headlines Sunday. But then changed it to "angry taunts" or something another.

  • SIV||

    But it would be odder still if all those congressmen were lying about something like that.

    This is common in local politics. Mike Royko had a term for it (I can't find on the internet)using some alderman's name as a verb for the tactic of shooting out your own campaign headquarters windows.

    A US Congressman from GA , David Scott, most likely spray-painted his own local office with racist graffiti the night after an "unflattering" public meeting with constituents (Tea Party guy asked a health care question).

  • dennis||

    I don't know, after reading the comments in that thread about feminism, you'd think some libertarians would avoid trying to make us all look like sexists, but they go full steam ahead anyway. That said, I think it was most likely a plant, if the slur in question was shouted.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Nowadays, any criticism of a female liberal is "mysoginistic". Especially if it's valid criticism.

    Then again, to the liberals who eschew hate speech while calling about half of America racist, woman-hating terrorists, it's just SOP.

  • ||

    I really can't understand these people who get into this mindset that sees sexism and racism everywhere. On some level they must realize that it's all an elaborate illusion they've created as political propaganda, right? Does their self-esteem depend that heavily on belief in the mendacity of others?

  • JSinAZ||

    Yes. Yes it does. Sad, isn't it?

  • ||

    But it would be odder still if all those congressmen were lying

    Really, Colin?

  • ||

    My thoughts exactly.

  • Thought Criminal||

    I know, dude. I mean, I can see one Congressman lying. But a bunch of Congressmen getting together to agree to brazenly lie to everyone? Where have we ever seen that, outside of all the fucking time?

  • SIV||

    FWIW, my money is on NO epithet shouted.
    John Lewis did radio commercials, run on election day, saying if you didn't vote against a white republican running for the Fulton County Commission that crosses would be burnt and KKK night-riders would return.

  • ||

    I think its pretty messed up the Democrats are preying on the fears of African-Americans. John Lewis is suppose to be this great civil rights leader but I guess if perpetuating old racial divisions gets you re-elected, why not? That's pretty disgusting.

  • JSinAZ||

    Personally, I get off on judging him by the content of his character. Guilty motherfucker!

  • ||

    Welcome to American Politics. I personally love their "post-epithet" photos. Love the 'pound-puppy' faces they have on. Make up your mind--are you to be admired for your upstanding ethics, or should the cops get to beating those savage 'troglodytes' 'cause I pity you? One--not both. Be a fucking man.

  • ||

    Reason's not doing anyone any good furthering this bullshit. Even if one racist protester did say something stupid, nobody but a lefty would say that it makes the whole movement racist. Welch, please reign in your enablers.

  • ||

    I'm glad someone's questioning the MSM's story. Everywhere else it's like the racists are coming, hide your children! Its nice to know I'm not the only person skeptical of these events.

  • Sean Healy||

    Also, it has to be said that public and voluble use of the word 'nigger' isn't the only defining characteristic of a racist. I'm pretty sure the definition is more general than that. Something like: having a paranoid, unrelentingly negative attitude towards a group of people and attributing bad characteristics to them which they do not necessarily exhibit. Racism often expresses itself through proxies or code so as to make their attacks appear like social or political criticims. So anti-Semites have often attacked 'financiers', 'speculators' or 'parasites' rather than 'kikes'. In this respect, I think the Tea Party sign likening Obama to a slaveowner and the poor, long-suffering, taxpaying white folk as 'niggars' is telling. This inversion is precisely the terror the racist has to contain emotionally by attacking the object of his derision. That sign is saying, effectively, that Obama has upended the natural order of things, the natural order being (the implication is clear) that black people do not tell white people what to do. So, yeah, maybe a bit of racism is at the heart of this movement.

  • ||

    Go fuck yourself, Sean.

  • JSinAZ||

    Pithy and to the point. This was the sort of epithet I have contemplated launching if I were to see a dozen or so smug congresscreeps slithering their oleagenous way across the mall in my presence.

    "Go fuck yourself Nancy".

  • wayne||

    In this respect, I think the Tea Party sign likening Obama to a slaveowner and the poor, long-suffering, taxpaying white folk as 'niggars' is telling.

    Sean, what sign are you referring to

  • Vernon Dozier||

    The sign that Monyihan saw.

  • wayne||

    It can't be the photo of the sign that Moynihan linked to. Moynihan's sign link does not mention Obama or "white folk".

  • Vernon Dozier||

    It appears Moynihan and Wayne are illiterate as well...

  • wayne||

    Did you actually look at the photo, Vern?

  • Vernon Dozier||

    I meant to say "Moynihan and Sean." I'm apologize. I'm wandering out into the woods with a bottle and a cap gun...to make it sound real.

  • wayne||

    No biggie. Typos happen.

  • ||

    Something like: having a paranoid, unrelentingly negative attitude towards a group of people and attributing bad characteristics to them which they do not necessarily exhibit

    So you're saying that the media and the Democrats are racist towards the Tea Party protesters?

  • josey||

    That sentence was just jumping off the screen for you too, eh? I did laugh out loud.

    When you hear someone make a statement along the lines of 'look at that group of bigots, they all...', you should usually just turn away, lest your mind go into infinite recursion.

  • JSinAZ||

    The term would be bigoted. A racist is a specific type of bigot. Racists are a proper subset of bigots, you might say.

  • Stickeenotes||

    Are you referring to the congress which is overwhelmingly made up of old white males? So the natural order would be old white men being told what to do by taxpayers. Your line of reasoning = epic fail.

    I appreciate your attempt at spin, but you clearly have not mastered the art. However, the assumption contained within your spin, that the natural order is whites telling blacks what to do is interesting. How long have you been harboring racist tendencies?

  • Hank||

    Wow, I missed this one. I hate to sound like a bigot or racist here, Sean, but you are a fucking REtard!

    Listen, you imbecile, the revolt i.e. Tea Party started with the fucking TARP before our fucking white mother/ black father president was elected, you sick personality disordered liberal/progressive asshole.

  • alan||

    Sean, a straight razor, isopropyl alcohol, string, and some surgical sutures. A few more than you think you may need of the later in case your aim isn't quite precise. Go to your bathroom, hold on to your balls, stretch them out, tie the two ligaments holding your sack to the rest of your unit together. Tie this area very tightly.

    You should feel some discomfort in your diaphragm at this point. If you are not feeling it, you don't have the string on tight enough as of yet, and you need to adjust it until you do. Now, hold your balls once again and take a good wack at them with the straight razor.

    You will probably be in too much pain at this point to apply the sutures, so skip that step unless really necessary. Now, this is the really important part that you can't miss or mess up, or the human race is doomed. Dump your ball sack and the entire contents, especially your semen into the toilet and flush. Now, call 911.

    Could you do that for us? It is kind of important that you do.

  • I totally agree||

    "So anti-Semites have often attacked 'financiers', 'speculators' or 'parasites' rather than 'kikes'"

    Yeah, or "corporations". I mean, it's pretty obvious -- all the talk about them caring about nothing but making money (and showing no ethical restraint in their pursuit of same), their alleged manipulation of world governments, consolidation of the "corporate (read: Jewish) media", the call for us to give government greater power to protect us from their insidious influence.

    Granted, when you consider the typical leftist's thoughts on Muslim hate speech against Jews or their general opinions on the Israeli state, the illusion cracks a bit.

    Once you understand the code, it's pretty obvious: being a leftist is just being a more socially acceptable sort of neo-nazi.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Actually, Sean, the real point is government has become the plantation owners, and we are the slaves.

    Nothing wrong with pointing that out, even if the imagery is offensive. But then, there are people out there who would find something racist in the sentence "I'm going to the store to buy some milk" if they are really determined to do so.

    Besides, there are other kinds of racists besides the stereotypical white-supremacist Joo-hater asshole template. The New Black Panthers come to mind, for instance.

    Simply put, racism is fucking stupid, without regard to the stupid fuck spouting it.

    Or... what Mr. Ard says below.

  • ||

    Interesting...a case study of the left mind--or did you just skip an ASSLOAD of the above posts. You very 'educatedly' discuss the obvious, and well-discussed bumpkin, but failed to note things discrediting this man's authenticity as even being a member of the Tea Party Movement, including a link to the Texas chapter discussing this man in particular.

  • The Republican Heretic||

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    The same side of the aisle concerned with hate-speech codes... calls people hillbillies and slings the "racist" branding-iron around with impunity.

    "It's okay if WE do it"ism strikes once again.

  • wayne||

    excellent point.

  • Anonymous Backstabber||

    This video:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....r_embedded
    clearly shows one of the congressman's aides prominantly holding up what look like two camera phones to record the crowd. If the slur was real, surely it was caught by his cameras. Don't call me surely. Where's his tape?

  • sarainitaly||

    That is Jesse Jackson Jr.

    If the incident happened, Jackson would have it on tape. Why no tape?

    IF anyone did yell out the profanity, my money is on Keith Olbermann. He really needed new material to try and prove himself "right".

  • ||

    Racism often expresses itself through proxies or code

    See, also, "dog whistle".

    See, also, "You see what you're looking for".

  • ||

    Thank god *applauds* I think the voice of Reason has spoken here, and I can stop reading these posts.

    TY P Brooks

  • Ammonium||

    Totally fabricated stunt. Why else would the congresspersons take an outdoor detour through a protest on their way to the floor?

  • ||

    Good question. Have they ever done that before?

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    EXTREMELY good question.

    IMO, they *knew* there were Dem-friendly plants in the crowd, willing to shout racist epithets, knowing they wouldn't get arrested if one of their Dear Leaders gave the all-clear sign.

  • Jim Treacher||

    Denying an unfounded accusation of racism is racist.

  • ||

    Reason entertaining the question of weather or not the Tea Party is racist is really starting to piss me off.

  • ||

    Meh, you're all racists.

  • Jen Michaels||

    "WHAT A LOAD"....Trying asking my sister, who lives in the heart of Memphis, Tennessee how nice they are to her being a white minority, and come up with something better than this...Reverse Racism? Shall We?

    MySpace.com/Jen_Michaels

    Facebook.com/JenMichaelsInc

  • Hank||

    Fucking racist "tea baggers." The only thing I dislike more than the word "nigger" is "the N word." What a fucking retarded (the R word) country we live in! I had a friend from Chile that lived here for a year (she was superb, and hot

  • Hank||

    0
  • Hank||

    - sexist) that couldn't grasp how pervasive "nigger" was in the black community, how whites were forbidden to use the word under any circumstance, and how silly people sounded, especially on the tv, that instead said "the N word." I tried to explain as best I could and then I just told her that our country was overrun with political correctness (had to explain that) and ultimately our country was just fucking "the R word"ed.

    Those "tea baggers" should learn some civility such as this:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BDmRdfyAUio

  • Hank||

    not sure why that posted that way. maybe I'm retared. better than a "progressive" I guess.

  • OMG||

    Distinction without a difference

  • Hank||

    No, no. Progressivism is closer to FUCKING retarded. Not just plain ole retarded. Ask Rahm. Retarded people are way too intelligent to become progressives. They're more autonomous and self-reliant than progressives.

  • Cosmonaut||

    There are a lot of cosmotarians out there who would LOVE it if the story was true. They would be vindicate in their view that middle America is a bunch of racist rubes and need to be enlightened by the Orange Line cosmo mafia.

  • wayne||

    it is pretty telling that Moynihan sees the N-word on a sign and automatically thinks of Obama, despite the fact that the sign made no mention of Obama. Sean (above at 6:13PM) sees "taxpayer" and automatically (subconsciously) sees, "the poor, long-suffering, taxpaying white folk..."

    Who are the racists around here, really?

  • Stickeenotes||

    In no way am I defending the "Texas-flag bedecked illiterate," but his sign does not appear to be singling out the president with the "n" word. It appears that the sign says congress = slave owner, taxpayer = "n" word. This would seem to cover the president as a tax payer, but it hardly singles him out. This in no way excuses the stupidity of the choice of signs or the language involved, but the sentiment is different than what you described.

    Real racism should be condemned in the strongest terms possible, but the defamatory accusations of racism that are not backed up by evidence should be condemned as a sin against those who have suffered the genuine sting of racism. Keith Olbermann and others who besmirch the good names of decent tea party protesters are cut from the same cloth as those who label all anti-war protesters as unpatriotic. They are wretched creatures who should be disgusted by what they see in the mirror.

  • wayne||

    Moynihan, you really need to explain your interpretation of the photo.

  • Hugh Jass||

    Michael, you seem to be the illiterate one in this case.

    I have no idea who this Texan gentleman with the sign is, but if you actually read his sign, it says Congress is the Slave Owner and the Taxpayers are the Niggers.

  • wayne||

    No video, no audio. This is total bullshit perpetrated by a bunch of loathsome black congressmen acting as if they are the powerless ones. Tawana Brawley all over again.

  • JSinAZ||

    Excellent point. Bears repeating often.

  • ||

    ok you people lets get some perspective here. That is clearly a redneck caling people niggar in tha photo. Are you people trying to defend him? Michael and I are not into conspiracy theories so you can put your decoder ring and star charts down, we know what we see. That guy with the flag shirt is a total troglydyte racist. Dave Weigel, please back us up on this...tell all these conspiracy nuts that yes tea partiers are racists, we don't just make this stuff up.

  • josey||

    Cosmo -- damn close, but still a bit off, so just a couple of crits:

    1. the 'total' in 'total troglydyte racist' feels forced.
    2. the over-use of 'you people' is rather glaring.

    Overall though, not bad.

  • ||

    you people with your lawyerly technicalities. Listen up, this is how speech codes work, if you use a naughty word then you are bad...doesn't matter how you use the word.

  • JSinAZ||

    Good thing speech codes don't exist in the real world.

  • Chris||

    Though I am loathe to believe the story due to a lack of evidence and all that, I don't find it hard to believe it could have happened either. In fact I find it much more plausible to believe your average citizen to yell "nigger" than the equally unsupported claims here that it was likely a plant by the demotards. Though many simply refuse to believe it, racism is alive and well in America. I see it every day.

    That said, the sign itself is hyperbole to the max. That he means to suggest that we, the tax payers, are as bad off as the people he's comparing us to is ludicrous at minimum. It discredits him and his movement and it should. A little perspective is in order. Had he used the proper word for his context, "slave" rather than "niggar," his sign would have been able to make an impact, but the language used has WAY too much cultural baggage to be used legitimately in this context.

    I don't like HCR either. I'm not happy about it. We the people deserve better. But his "connection" is a sad attempt at being witty, and it's absolutely inflammatory.

  • josey||

    I think Rand made a similar mistake with her insistence on the use of 'selfish'. We don't get to dictate to our readers that they drop their preconceived notions, in order to inspect the issue as we intend them to, so trying to be cute just ends up being anti-productive. Specifically, such a strategy mainly ends up producing polarization: for those who are either amenable to, or open minded enough to grasp the substance, it is stimulating and can represent strong evidence for the argument; for those who start out being averse, or are unwilling to be as thoughtful as requested, it will most likely be made into the argument against that it appears to be at first look.

    That said, I think you're way off. I've been around the block, and have not observed the type of overt racism you are claiming. I'm not going to say I haven't heard black race jokes, but I've also heard my fair share of Norwegian jokes too. I can't think of any scenario where a person I've known would ever act according to a racist motivation, whether that means uttering a slur, engaging in violence, denying someone a job, or otherwise -- it's been pretty well drilled into the common moral fabric of society by now, at least according to my personal observation.

    Where I do see plenty of it though, is in the media...modern media is absolutely obsessed with race.

  • SIV||

    You're falling into the trap. It wasn't a crowd of racists chanting, it wasn't a lone yelled epithet, it wasn't even a Democrat plant. It didn't fucking happen!

    There is NO evidence, despite a thousand witnesses, including members of the media and electronic recordings. There is nothing but an accusation from known race-baiters but hey, it fits the narrative.If you oppose the nationalization of medical care "crosses will be burnt" and "night-riders will terrorize the people".

  • Chris||

    I'm speaking specifically about the sign linked in the blog entry. That did happen. And it is inflammatory.

  • ||

    What if it turned out that this man was a registered Democrat? Would that mean that all Dem's were racist? Nice try moron (note spelling:)). Point being that even if he were a card-toting member of the Tea Party, AND the D.C. curses were a reality--it still does not discredit the Tea Party movement. Biases work both ways sweet cheeks--you can't tell me Dems or Reps, or fucking Martians are perfect. The real deal here--beyond this story--is that a large group of people are saying fuck you CONGRESS--not OBAMA--and the media is always gonna flare up shit like this to get their attention. Just look at the attention THIS ARTICLE HAS. Get back to facts. No one called YOU a nigger--get over it. But there are people in Washington making Laws YOU WILL BE AFFECTED BY.

  • wayne||

    Had he used the proper word for his context, "slave" rather than "niggar," his sign would have been able to make an impact, but the language used has WAY too much cultural baggage to be used legitimately in this context.

    I agree.

    You say you see racism everyday. I would be curious to hear examples. I see no racism at all.

  • ||

    I don't see racism either.

    Can't remember the last time I heard anyone utter an obviously racist statement. Maybe some shock comedian in the late 80s.
    I don't even hear racist jokes anymore.

  • Chris||

    I live in a rural area of central Kentucky. As much as I love him, my next door neighbor and his circle of friends utter the "n" word as many times a day in completely inflammatory ways (I.e., when not even talking about black people) as I could count. In fact, the very first time we met after I moved here he said it as if everyone does all of the time, and that it's simply natural to look down on blacks.

    I don't mean to suggest that I see it screamed from the hill tops everyday. I don't (unless you count the effigy of Obama in a noose on my campus just prior to the election). I would have students at the University of Kentucky who would openly try and argue for racist practices as right (segregation is better because it saves blacks from being beat up by racists at school).

    But institutional racism is the worst, even in so called "liberal" institutions (universities). Despite having rising acceptance rates at our university during the middle part of the decade, we saw LOWER acceptance rates for black students.

    The list goes on.

  • Hank||

    Chris is right. I grew up in the South. In the 80's. I lived downtown and everyday I walked 10 blocks to school. Frankly, it was awful. My friends and I were regularly spit on, we had eggs thrown at us, constantly beaten up, shaken down for money,and after getting bicycles, had them sotlen frequently. My closest friend had his teeth kicked in. All because we were white. The list goes on.

    The racism I have EXPERIENCED ( this being the operative word) in my 37 years has been directed at me. But hey, there are assholes of all different variances of chromosomes. You ultimately judge people by the content of their character. Hence, my disdain for liberals.

    One of my oldest college buddies is negro, or African American for you politically correct fuckheads. We were discussing the Prof Gates incident. It got a little heated and he remarked that "You don't have to live with the legacy of slavery." My retort - "Yeah, what the fuck ever!"

    There will always be some sort of bigotry in the world. Live with it, you fucking pussies. For all of you whiney fucking "racist profilers," at some point - 9 or 10 generations from now - people won't know what the fuck to put on their census forms for ethnicity/race. And we'll all have free health care and biracial unicorns.

  • ||

    The guy with the sign is Dale Robertson and he got thrown out of the rally he was holding that sign at.

    He's called himself a founder of the tea party and the leader of the tea party, but as far as anybody can tell he represents a group of exactly one person.

    I have my share of differences with many of the tea party folk, this attention whore has nothing to do with it.

    He sure has gotten a lot of mileage out of it though, with appearances both in the newspapers and on TV. Can't imagine why...

  • Chad||

    Racism isn't the heart of the Tea Party.

    This is.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ik4f1dRbP8

    Admit it: You agree with these guys in substance, and only disagree with their tone (which, actually, I find refreshingly honest).

  • Serf||

    Of course, because if a few vicious assholes do it, everyone else must do it too. That said, us advocates of limited government, free markets and small taxes wouldn't dare give charity, that would show compassion, please. The behavior is inexcusable, that man's rights were obviously violated, but where is your big mother government to take care of him? Maybe if the government hadn't decades ago decided to tax the average person right out of the private charity market, this man wouldn't have to wade through tons of red tape (which he is in no condition to do from these images) to get some taxpayer backed bureaucratic care. Certainly people who actually care couldn't take better care of him now, could they?

  • Tony||

    What's preventing you from giving to charity in a world that offers basic services to everyone? If charity worked alone to achieve modern standards of civilization then there wouldn't be any problems to solve in the first place. You're not that oppressed. Supplement the government with your charity all you want, but if you're gonna be so whiny and entitled as to withhold that charity because government is ensuring universality then why should we expect you to pick up the slack if government were to recede? I don't trust your motives.

  • ||

    The nice thing is that I don't give a single squirt of piss whether you trust my motives.

    Fuck off. Get your guns out of my face and your hands out of my pockets. Leave me alone.

  • ||

    Bravo Serf
    *applauds*
    To explain to Tony, when Government makes charity MANDATORY, it ceases to be a VIRTUE. No matter how much fucking ganja you smoke, I just somehow don't think you would impress Buddha, Gandhi, Christ, or whomever you idolize other than a self-aggrandizing political expert that MANDATORY charity, instead of WILLFUL charity, is a virtue. No one will deny (well maybe a few would) to help a man in need--it's different when a man in Washington, in America 2010, in a suit I could never afford tells me to give HIM money--and that guy over there (with Cancer, MS, what have you) is gonna get it. Yeah right. Same for Bush, same for Obama. Our gov't is broke-dick, and this black vs. white, Dem vs. Rep, is just a WAY TOO FUCKING OLD STORY, pushed on by those that benefit--politicians and media. READ these goddamn laws, and please stopping 'rooting for the home team'--they don't give a shit about you.

  • josey||

    You posted that link before, and I'm still trying to figure out where you see a single cogent thought (i.e. agree in substance) expressed in that video; they're all over the board.

    1) "No free handout over here." -- the guy's an obvious douche, not thinking, and just trying to make a statement to those around him.

    2) "You have to work for everything you get." -- again, he's being a dismissive moron. It is not as simple a question as he'd apparently like it to be. But then, he might not be so hostile if his hard-earned wasn't routinely confiscated from him; admit it Chad, you have your part in creating idiots like him.

    3) "I'll pay for this guy. Start a pot. Here we go." -- no complaints here. That's how its supposed to work.

    4) "I'll decide when to give you money. Here, here's another one." -- and we're back to the resentment I alluded to in quote (2). What is he railing against here, Chad; does he just have an innate hatred for that poor guy, or is there more to the story?

    What you fail to understand is that the behavior you see there in that video is what you should expect to see when you insist on usurping the a person's impulse toward charity. You are forcibly disempowering people; how can you not expect this to manifest itself in resentment and hostility?

    I do not excuse that behavior -- civility should always trump emotion. But I do not get to dictate people's behavior.

    Not everything is as simple as the government-worshipers would like it to be. Not every charitable act is tax-deductible, and you may not understand how frustrating it is that that's the case. When I need to help my cousin with money for her bills and food, you know what -- I don't get to do that until Uncle Sam has taken his cut. That is positively infuriating.

    Then there are the mental distortions created and perpetuated by your system. When I want to help another friend of mine, a single mother, I'm completely unable to do so -- because she won't allow it. She has no problem using WIC and whatever other benefits she can get, but when it comes to direct personal charity, she will have none of it. She is of a mind that she'd be taking advantage; but your awesome system is never quite good enough. So she, and her daughter, who I adore, never have as much as I wish they did.

    And you can go to hell for that, Chad.

    But yeah, I understand part of what you see in that video. And, though I doubt the guys in it would be able to articulate, I sympathize with some of the reasons why they act that way. I don't excuse them as victims, because I don't happen to think that operating with your brain switched to the OFF position is an excuse for anything. But I understand where they're coming from.

    The question is: do you?

    Or, don't you have to? It's a hell of alot easier just to shove different people into all those neat little slots you've built for them in your mind.

  • The Libertarian Guy||

    Chad claims he hasn't always been a liberal douche, but I cast doubt on his supposed non-douchy past.

  • Hillary Clinton||

    I didn't leave the Republican Party, the Party left me.

  • alan||

    Five minutes of your life wasted justifying yourself to Chad?

    You might as well have been up on Bunker Hill and when you saw the white of his eyes blurted out, "Come here, Red Coat, I want to talk to ya."

  • ||

    Well I thought it was a nice read.

  • josey||

    So I'm a fast typist with a Luke Skywalker complex...I know, it's a bad combo.

  • alan||

    You did tell him to go to Hell, so I shouldn't really complain. It is just that when you justify yourself, it not only sounds like you may have done or thought something that needed justifying, but it suggest that such a scummy person as the chadtroll is somehow your equal. He sure as hell isn't.

    There I'm bitching again. Wished my girlfriend was here tonight so somebody could slap me.

  • josey||

    Sorry, but I don't really follow your 'justify myself' angle; I neither indicated that I agree with the guys in that video nor that I condone their behavior; quite the contrary. What I did do was to attempt to explore some of the possible causes for it. Such exercises interest me, as I do not believe people -- even really ugly ones -- to be the two-dimensional cardboard cutouts that we may initially assume them to be.

  • alan||

    Maybe I slipped into a little over analysis, and put too much emphasis on motivation. The gist of it is, it's Chad. In the years I have seen him on this board, I have never seen him take a thoughtful response like yours seriously, or acknowledge it effect or worth of reflection on his own thoughts. He goes about in blissful ignorance pretending that you don't exist. My point is, you would have had better luck engaging the Red Coat than Chad.

  • Chad||

    3) "I'll pay for this guy. Start a pot. Here we go." -- no complaints here. That's how its supposed to work.

    Exactly. This video is nothing but pure, unadulterated libertarianism, as expressed by an honest douchebag. Most of you don't have the balls to be this honest, and like closet racists, only express these ideas "politely" and behind the backs of the people who you are really affronting.

    Not everything is as simple as the government-worshipers would like it to be

    OMG. LOL! Where did I EVER say that. It is YOU morons who believe the world is simple, as you refuse to read past chapter one of your econ book, where it begins to discuss what happens when all of the assumptions of the basic theory begin to break down. You know, like they do in the real world. Reality is hard and complex, with no easy solutions.

    Not every charitable act is tax-deductible, and you may not understand how frustrating it is that that's the case

    Only douchebags TAKE the charitable deduction. Well, I might make an exception for someone who takes the deduction, and then immediately cuts a check for the amount of the deduction on behalf of another charity.

  • josey||

    "Exactly. This video is nothing but pure, unadulterated libertarianism, as expressed by an honest douchebag."

    More like, pure unadulterated Hannity-ism. If you think any one of those morons could come within a million miles of providing you a coherent definition of the word 'libertarian', you've got another thing coming.

    "Most of you don't have the balls to be this honest, and like closet racists, only express these ideas "politely" and behind the backs of the people who you are really affronting."

    So, what, are you saying that if I'm out with a group of friends, and we happen to encounter someone like the unfortunate fellow sitting on the ground in the video, that if I stop and say "Hey everybody -- pony up, let's see what we can do to help", that I'm somehow 'affronting' him? What, pray tell, would be the proper thing to do here, Chad? What should the guys in the video have done -- what specific action would have been acceptable to you?

    "OMG. LOL! Where did I EVER say that. It is YOU morons who believe the world is simple, as you refuse to read past chapter one of your econ book, where it begins to discuss what happens when all of the assumptions of the basic theory begin to break down. You know, like they do in the real world. Reality is hard and complex, with no easy solutions.

    You are deliberately taking me out of context -- if you spent a moment actually comprehending what I wrote, you'd see that what I am claiming is that you are looking at that video simplistically and regarding what you see with a dismissively arrogant attitude. You are not inspecting the personalities involved, instead regarding the people in it exactly as the caricatures that they've so conveniently made themselves into.

    In reference to your above non sequitur, I agree, the world is a complicated and dangerous place. We disagree on the efficacy of a coercive government, which is so obviously your easy solution, to alleviate that situation. Notice the subtle distinction I just made -- well, let's see if you can divine what it was.

    Only douchebags TAKE the charitable deduction. Well, I might make an exception for someone who takes the deduction, and then immediately cuts a check for the amount of the deduction on behalf of another charity."

    This is part of the point in reference to which I called you simple. We have a fundamental difference of opinion on the nature of property; I hold that a person must be allowed to own his property absolutely in order for society to function in the long run. You, by definition, do not. Therefore, we will have a differing opinion as well, as regards how a person disposes of said property, and arrive at different conclusions with respect to how the confiscation of such is likely to affect him psychologically.

    So I will ask again: do the morons in the video have an innate hatred for the guy sitting on the ground, or is there more to it? Are they just a piece of stock footage to you, or are they real actual human beings, with lives, children, wives, etc., living for years in a society, which has helped, for better or worse (obviously worse, in this case), to shape their way of thinking?

  • ||

    And here is confirmation of the above from those right wing shills over at Mother Jones:

    Wash Post Quotes Bogus Tea Party Leader. The guy needs to go away.

  • alan||

    Chad, a straight razor, isopropyl alcohol, string, and some surgical sutures. A few more than you think you may need of the later in case your aim isn't quite precise. Go to your bathroom, hold on to your balls, stretch them out, tie the two ligaments holding your sack to the rest of your unit together. Tie this area very tightly.

    You should feel some discomfort in your diaphragm at this point. If you are not feeling it, you don't have the string on tight enough as of yet, and you need to adjust it until you do. Now, hold your balls once again and take a good wack at them with the straight razor.

    You will probably be in too much pain at this point to apply the sutures, so skip that step unless really necessary. Now, this is the really important part that you can't miss or mess up, or the human race is doomed. Dump your ball sack and the entire contents, especially your semen into the toilet and flush. Now, call 911.

    Could you do that for us? It is kind of important that you do.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    No no no.

    THIS is the proper way to deal with the likes of Chad, Tony - and the entire Democratic Congressional contingent as well.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8W94XcbKjYU

    It would be FAR more satisfactory.

    And entertaining.

  • Tony||

    You guys have a really weird reaction to constantly being totally outmatched and your arguments totally demolished by the likes of Chad.

  • alan||

    Chad has never 'won' an argument. He has shared his view points with us but rarely do they begin with anything that is not a false premise.

  • alan||

    You got me there, Tony! I thought you were serious. God what a great kidder.

  • Chad||

    My premise isn't false. You AGREE with the guys in the video. That is YOUR ideology, expressed directly and honestly into the faces of one of the people whom it hurts most.

    And it is vile.

  • Gilbert Martin||

    Hurt the guy?

    Did anyone physically assault the man in that video?

    That is the only thing that would ever constitute hurting him.

  • ||

    *big sigh at the end of good long laugh*:)

  • Apostate Jew||

    "I see no racism at all."

    A small but fine demonstration of the incredible power of denial.

  • Chris||

    I'm not sure whether denial is the culprit, as much as it is the idea that unless we have some redneck in the street yelling "down with the niggers", it isn't racism.

    It's as alive as it was when lynching was a popular activity in many parts of the south, it just isn't as public and overt as it once was.

  • Mr. FIFY||

    Chris, you make it sound like we haven't made a bit of progress.

    Yes, there are still too many racists. On ALL sides. But this ain't the 1950s, and slavery will never happen again, so stop picking at the scabs.

  • alan||

    But this ain't the 1950s, and slavery will never happen again, so stop picking at the scabs.

    Society left (counter)progressives behind fifty years ago. Chris and those who think like he does that it is 'no better than when they were lynching in the South' are like a little old, senile lady. Tuck in her quilt around her arms and pass to her the scrap book of civil rights era mementos as there is nothing left for her in the here and now.

  • Tony||

    Some progress isn't necessarily all the progress that we need.

    Having a black president was bound to draw out the crazies and nobody should be surprised by it, including all you people pretending not to notice it.

  • Chris||

    "Having made progress" should not be confused with "still have a ways to go."

    I'm not saying that thing aren't better. I'm not even saying that racism isn't directed at all kinds of people by all kinds of people. But the idea that racism doesn't exist or that it doesn't matter is insane.

  • JSinAZ||

    You may have to provide more detail - just what is the proffered racism? If it takes incredible powers of denial to ignore it, then you should be actually able to point at some glaring example fairly easily.

  • Chris||

    http://www.smartpunters.com/obamaisanigger/

    I would say this is pretty glaring. And I found it in about .34 sec.

    Or the effigy of Obama hanging by a noose found at my university campus.

    Seriously? Are you so deluded as to think racism is so diminished that one have to look very hard to find it, or have it "proven" by someone else? I don't know what rock you live under, but it sure does shelter you a whole bunch.

  • ||

    These examples are pretty glaring. However, they have nothing to do with this article or the Tea Party, or Health Care Laws. If you wonder why I don't get more riled up about this sort of trash--I grew up a kid of the 80's--no race riots then--no--we had skinheads, and after you get into fights with them a few times (both the racists and unity (cause all of them were fuckin thugs))you soon realize you peel off one or two, and their pussies w/o their buffer of a group. Same with a pussy who pops up a website, as your first example. The effigy--well that just demonstrates the level of intellect admitted to your school--not the best thing to bring up, despite your noble intentions.

  • Peetsker||

    good grief, such a Moynihan thing to write about

  • alan||

    He is a little too curious about inside the belt way chatter, and has not enough curiosity about what happens next, but he is learning.

  • Tony||

    If you can't see the racism that absolutely saturates the tea party rallies then either you're a liar or you're not paying attention and shouldn't be speaking for them.

    What could be the problem is that, having so recently emerged from their caves after an 8 year hibernation, the right-wing fringe isn't aware of what is considered gauche and racist in modern society.

    But since 74% of tea partiers are Republicans or Republican sympathizers, it's a wonder libertarians even bother defending them.

  • Tony||

    That would be the same Republican party more than half of which questions the president's U.S. citizenship.

  • Campus Progressive||

    Everyone knows that 'balancing the budget' is a code word for racism.

  • Tony||

    No, that would be a bunch of johnny-come-lateleys suddenly discovering fiscal responsibility when Democrats are in charge and engaging in stimulus spending to fix the economic catastrophe that was caused by these newly reformed budget hawks.

    The movement itself, and a lot of the rhetoric, is really only about one thing: returning Republicans to power. The racists are just their core constituency.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    "...that would be a bunch of johnny-come-lateleys ..."

    Better late then never.

  • ||

    Man your fucking delusional! Yeah, Michael Steele's been hittin up clan rally's with a wad of cash sayin--"Hey crackers, I got a job for YOU!"

  • ||

    Shh--not everyone here is white!

  • alan||

    Tony, a straight razor, isopropyl alcohol . . . nah, the last thing I would want to see is my Tony buddy in pain. You shrieking on a 911 call, no way, a bit much.

  • Thought Criminal||

    "If you can't see the racism that absolutely saturates the tea party rallies then either you're a liar or you're not paying attention and shouldn't be speaking for them."

    So, that being the case, it shouldn't be too hard for you to put together a thorough set of evidence showing that not only is racism occasionally visible there, but that it is a dominant trend and a driving motivator.

  • Campus Progressive||

    Also, 'Kill the Bill!' is clearly a reference to Bill Cosby, who is not only a prominent black person, but also played a doctor on TV. Therefore the slogan obviously advocates killing black people. Racism is sometimes so subtle and unconscious. These Tea Baggers probably don't even know they are inciting genocide.

  • ||

    Ahh yes, and his Doctor Role relates to the black conspiracy to pass this health care plan!

    *applauds Campus Progressive's cognitive powers*

  • alan||

    Recall that the left has been making these cynical charges of racism since last Winter around this time, and certainly would have during the campaign to the extent they could get away with it if the ugliest bigot involved in those events was Obama's own minister, and what are the results of these periodic accusations? Backfire, is that the proper word? Yep, it is.

  • Tony||

    And the right's newfound racial sensitivity--in the form of claiming only white people are truly the victims of racism--isn't cynical at all?

  • alan||

    You doubt the sicerity of the tea partiers and their anger? Lol. Sure, go ahead and put your hand in that croc's mouth and see what happens.

  • alan||

    Spelling is worse than John's.

  • alan||

    I sure as Hell can't speak for white people, but if you don't think that the proletariat amongst them can't see how they are FUCKED by official policies, like affirmative action, which I have benefited from unfairly, to be honest, though I was unaware of it at the time, than you are mightily blind.

    Anytime it is brought up, Progressive's inner little hippie comes out and says, 'mend it, don't end it. Let's make it about class instead of race, happy, happy, blah, blah, blah', and you think that is the end of discussion because you have expressed such pretty little sentiments and no one is ever going to call you on it.

    I say this to you to give you time to clear out of the palace. You are looking more and more like Marie Antoinette to them with each passing day.

  • alan||

    The hilarious thing about this is when progressives picture the working class it is an antiquated tub of lard unionized 50's sitcom bus driver who is still on their side. LOL! Or maybe a stone faced, tee shirt and denim wearing bespectacled 'socially conscious' guy with long locks out of Lennon's 'Working Class Hero.'

    The last people on Earth they would picture are those who attend tea parties. No, that could mean, oh no, the working class are their enemies! How could that happen! When every two am grad student bull session would end with an affirmation towards equality, social justice and the working man getting his just due?

    That is why they so vehemently hate the tea partiers. The existence of the tea parties underlines their betrayal of the working class.

  • ||

    *applause for alan*

  • ||

    WTF are you reading Tony? Hitler Today?
    'the right's newfound racial sensitivity'

    Really? What's got you in touch with this vibe?

  • Prolefeed||

    Also, 'Kill the Bill!' is clearly a reference to Bill Cosby

    I'd say it is a reference to this

    Which doesn't appear racist.

  • Dan||

    Is Racism the "Heart" of the Tea Party Movement?

    I've never encountered racist behavior at one, and don't know any racists who attend them. Then again, the only racists I know are Democrats, so that's not surprising.

  • bohuminson||

    Shame on you Michael C. Moynihan

  • bohuminson||

    But at least the libertarians are showing their true colors.

  • ||

    "End the Fed" is really code for "Get Rid of All the Black People."

  • Randy Cowell||

    You know what's great about sports or even American Idol? It doesn't matter whether the athletes or singers are black, white, Asian, or whatever; they are trashed or praised merely because of their performance and no one screams racist no matter whether it's praise or blame. If only politics could be that pure.

  • ||

    The shame is that American politics IS that shallow, AND that American Idol is MORE democratic.

  • Vernon Dozier||

    Is this article going to be corrected?

  • ||

    I'm not a big fan of the so called Tea Party movement in as much as it has been co-opted by GOP slime balls, but there are still many libertarian types involved and I do identify with them. I'm at the point now where it's "Fine, I'm a racist." I'm actually not. I think the whole idea of "race" is false, idiotic and archaic so calling me a racist is meaningless to me. I think simply excepting the idea of race makes you racist. I don't accept that idea, but those calling other's racist do.

  • ||

    I would like to say that I am the real founder of the Tea Party, and that WE ARE RACIST. I AM the fat guy in the picture, AND I was in D.C. too. I did INDEED call the aforementioned representatives 'niggers', while they were sneaking what were obviously hookers and a 'cracked-out' Marion Barry into their offices through an alley, which I only caught due to my keen arian eyeballs, and hence no press were nearby to catch me confronting them.

  • ||

    My name is Dale Robertson, and I just felt that being brought up 1,000 times already had not been enough to convince you guys of the truth.

    http://motherjones.com/mojo/20.....rty-leader

GET REASON MAGAZINE

Get Reason's print or digital edition before it’s posted online

  • Video Game Nation: How gaming is making America freer – and more fun.
  • Matt Welch: How the left turned against free speech.
  • Nothing Left to Cut? Congress can’t live within their means.
  • And much more.

SUBSCRIBE

advertisement