The entire Tea Party Convention is a profit-seeking affair charging $560 a ticket — plus the cost of a room at the Opryland Hotel. Among the convention’s eight listed sponsors is Tea Party Emporium, which gives as its contact address 444 Madison Avenue in New York, also home to the high-fashion brand Burberry. This emporium’s Web site offers a bejeweled tea bag at $89.99 for those furious at “a government hell bent on the largest redistribution of wealth in history.” This is almost as shameless as Glenn Beck, whose own tea party profiteering has included hawking gold coins merchandised by a sponsor of his radio show.
Last week a prominent right-wing blogger, Erick Erickson of RedState.com, finally figured out that the Tea Party Convention “smells scammy,” likening it to one of those Nigerian e-mails promising untold millions. Such rumbling about the movement’s being co-opted by hucksters may explain why Palin used her first paid appearance at Fox last Tuesday to tell Bill O’Reilly that she would recycle her own tea party profits in political contributions. But Erickson had it right: the tea party movement is being exploited — and not just by marketers, lobbyists, political consultants and corporate interests but by the Republican Party, as exemplified by Palin and Steele, its most prominent leaders.
However, this part is:
Tea partiers hate the G.O.P. establishment and its Wall Street allies, starting with the Bushies who created TARP, almost as much as they do Obama and his Wall Street pals.
It almost sounds like real populism, the same populism I saw at Freedom Rallies during the George W. Bush years. The difference is that during the Bush years, Republicans were ashamed of tax protestors, militiamen, Liberty Dollar supporters, and anti-Federal Reserve “Tyranny Response Team” members. Those nutjobs were spoiling the party, said the Republicans. They didn’t want to associate with anyone who would criticize The High Holy Bush as if he were just another flack for satanic central government.
Liberals dismissed the “right wing nuts” then and focused instead on the supposedly fascist tendencies of George W. Bush. Now that a Democrat is president, the liberals are once again noticing right wing radicals:
American history is dotted with moments like this, when, as the Princeton historian Sean Wilentz says, “panic and vitriol come to the fore,” occasioning a temporary realignment of political interests.
But the Loser Party is warming up to their populist buddies only up to a point:
When Steele and Palin pay lip service to the movement, they are happy to glom on to its anti-tax, anti-Obama, anti-government, anti-big-bank vitriol. But they don’t call for any actual action against the bailed-out perpetrators of the financial crisis.
Yeah, there is only so much of that thin veneer of respectability that the hypocritical, money-grubbing, lying Republicans are willing to grant to populists.
For example, they aren’t doing anything for the hardworking “Monetary Architect” behind the Liberty Dollar, Bernard von Nothaus, who is still being railroaded by the FBI (that’s the organization now known as Obama’s Secret Stasi Gestapo Bullies, formerly affectionately called Bush’s Happy Puppy Rainbow Helpers).
The whining, unprincipled political animals of the Republican Party may be on a roll finally, after getting Scott Brown elected to the senate. Personally, I would rather see them struggle for a couple more years and pander to the right-wing populists.