The Nation's Christopher Hayes has a curious piece up. This excerpt just about covers the narrative arc:
Last September, I was at some off-the-record Washington dinner and happened to be at the table of a Democratic Congressman. He'd just gotten back from recess in his district, where he'd been subjected to the full Tea Party treatment. As he described the rage he'd witnessed, it was clear he was spooked. I remember thinking he was more scared of voting for the healthcare bill than he was of voting against it, and that was going to be a problem.
I thought about that Congressman this past Sunday as I watched more than 700 protesters from National People's Action gather on the front lawn at the home of Gregory Baer, deputy counsel for the Bank Regulatory and Public Policy Group at Bank of America. […]
I'm dispositionally inclined to cringe at actions like this: I don't like conflict; I feel bad for the dude who's having his Sunday ruined. But I got over that real quick when Trenda Kennedy of Springfield, Illinois, took the bullhorn on Baer's steps. "In America, every seven seconds one of our homes goes into foreclosure," she said. "My home is one of those!" […]
All of this is part of a nationwide series of direct actions called "Showdown in America," spearheaded by NPA, the People Improving Communities through Organizing (PICO) network and the Service Employees International (SEIU). The campaign aims to dismantle the entire Wall Street–Washington corporatist axis, which gave us the financial crisis, the bailouts and 7 million foreclosures since 2008, a million of which have ended in repossession.
It's about damn time. We have witnessed the greatest implosion of American capitalism in nearly a century, and the only grassroots movement the cataclysm seems to have birthed is a right-wing populist backlash. […]
If we're going to get reform on the scale we need, bank lobbyists and members of Congress alike have to be confronted with the terrifying thought that the system from which they profit might just be run over—that 700 angry protesters might show up on their lawn any given Sunday.
The role of police in escorting those protesters to Baer's house (or not) is under dispute.
*UPDATE: Hayes Tweets to me: "never called anyone 'spooky.' Point was that tea party protests at August town halls were effective organizing."