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9/13/2009
DEBATE OVER TEA PARTY PROTEST NUMBERS MASKS THE REAL HISTORY MADE

I penned a special column for PJ Media on the 9/12 protests yesterday, pointing out the historical significance of the event; that it represents the first truly mass movement of conservatives in American history.

A sample that will no doubt bring the wrath of the right down on my head:

It is definitely an opposition movement, however. Certainly there is mass unhappiness with President Obama and his policies. And there is opposition to the Democrats in Congress. But does this really translate into electoral strength for Republicans? I am going to go out on a limb and say no. The anger here is a reaction (reactionary?) against a growing government, higher taxes, and the sense that the country that they grew up in is slipping away right before their eyes.

This is all fed, of course, by the pop conservatives on talk radio who have ginned up outrage against Obama and the Democrats. I say “ginned up” because what the president and his party have already done doesn’t need the added fear mongering being promoted by Beck, Hannity, Rush, and Savage in order for conservatives to rally. Raised taxes, cap and trade, health care reform, bailouts and takeovers, and other liberal agenda items should be sufficient to outrage anyone on the right and motivate them to protest these horrific policies. It is unnecessary to brand Obama a “communist” or even a “socialist” to realize that his policies spell disaster for individual liberty and the free market economy.

Getting caught up trying to guess the number of attendees at Saturday’s protests (as I and many others are doing today and will continue to do) is irrelevant. This is history in the making, something the United States has never seen: a genuine grass-roots conservative mass movement, activated by the new technologies, communicating effectively using the new software and hardware — and it is growing.

I received an email from a long time reader yesterday who was concerned I couldn’t see that the protests were, at bottom, “anti-American, racist, and dangerous…” There’s nothing “anti-American” about protesting anything. We are, after all, a nation born out of protest, nurtured in the bosom of contrarianism, and defining progress by going against the grain in order to right significant wrongs in our society. This is not “dangerous” by any stretch of the imagination - except to the comfort of the elites who always believe it dangerous when the hoi polloi become restless and disagree that only they in their superior wisdom are fit to tell the rest of us what to do.

As for the charge of the protest being “racist,” well, that’s nonsense. If you’re going to tar an entire movement with that epitaph based on the beliefs of a tiny fraction, then you should have no trouble referring to the civil rights movement of the 1960’s as a “Communist” movement since the CPUSA played a prominent role in the SCLC and other civil rights organizations. The same holds true for the anti-war movement where you couldn’t attend a protest without tripping over a Communist or two.

This protest movement encompasses the right in all its contradictions, it’s factions, and its various conceits. From far right nullification supporters to Rand Objectivists, conservatism in all its glory was on display. The dominant theme as it appeared to me was “Don’t Tread on Me” - the words emblazoned on the iconic Gaddsen Flag. This is both a warning and a statement of fact. The truth is, whether due to agitation by talk radio hosts or the very real belief held by millions that President Obama is going too far, too fast, in his quest to “remake” America, there is a sizable segment of the population who has stood up and said “enough.”

In their struggle to define what it is they don’t like about the direction Obama and the Democrats are taking the country, I believe they mis-identify their concerns as fighting “socialism” or “Communism.” But at bottom, I believe above all else, that they wish to “conserve” their own vision of what America is and what it should aspire to be. This vision is no more invalid than that of the presidents’ despite attempts on the left to delegitimize it. It is Burkean in its roots, and has to do with classic conservative values that have been at the root of conservative thought for as long as the republic has endured.

Change is coming to America. Change always comes to America because we are a dynamic society that stands still for no one. But the value of conservatism has always been that, in Bill Buckley’s words, conservatives “stand athwart history yelling Stop!” It is always better to manage change, to channel the revolutionary nature of our society into acceptable, and accepted paths that lead to consensual change. Any other path leads to blood and revolution. Just ask the French.

President Obama and the Democrats are moving too far, too fast. They have exceeded the comfort level for change that many Americans - perhaps most - believe is right and proper. You can argue the merits of the president’s agenda. That’s politics. But the pace of change is structural in our society. We aren’t set up for the kind of rapid, dizzying alterations that Obama and the Democrats are proposing. This is especially true because some of what the president advocates would change the fundamental relationship citizens have with the government.

“Small moves, Ellie. Small moves…” was the advice that Elenore Arroway’s dad gave to the youngster as she fiddled with the dial of her ham radio in the film Contact. By moving the dial in small increments, she was much more likely to be rewarded by making contact with another ham radio enthusiast.

Hundreds of thousands of people at the Capitol yesterday gave President Obama the same message.

By: Rick Moran at 6:30 am
34 Responses to “DEBATE OVER TEA PARTY PROTEST NUMBERS MASKS THE REAL HISTORY MADE”
  1. 1
    Charles Johnson’s Done « POWIP Pinged With:
    7:10 am 

    [...] line and sinker the view that resistance to the policies of The One is prima facie evidence of racism, a canard voiced by pothead pseudo-intellectual Bill Maher, for which he’s receiving kudos [...]

  2. 2
    Potter Said:
    7:31 am 

    World expert at counting crowds on video. He talks about Million Man March and Obama’s inaugaration estimates.

    http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=109628

    “In 1995 Magaly Koch, a Cambridge resident and member of Cambridge Community Television, was one the scientists who participated in a project by Boston University’s Center for Remote Sensing that involved estimating the crowd size of the Million Man March in Washington, D.C.

    At the time, there was a huge controversy surrounding the actual number of people who had attended the event organized by the Nation of Islam. The National Park Service claimed the number to be well below one million whereas the organizers estimated a figure above one million people. Dr. Farouk El-Baz, who is the director of the Center for Remote Sensing, was approached back then to provide a scientifically more accurate number that would help settle the dispute. Ever since, he has become the nation’s leading expert in counting crowds.

    So with the historic event of President Barack Obama’s inauguration approaching, Dr. El-Baz has been bombarded with telephone calls from the news media. Everybody wants to know how many people can fill the Washington Mall. Check out this conversation between Farouk and Magaly reminiscing about the Million Man March crowd counting project and discussing the number of people who can be expected to fill the National Mall in Washington, D.C. on January 20th, 2009.”

  3. 3
    SSG Christopher Whitaker Said:
    8:03 am 

    Sir,

    You are correct that a message has been sent, but the real question is whether the Administration will hear or even pay attention to it. This Administration has shown that not only is it beholden to its ideology, regardless of facts and contradictions, but that it has no interest in anything that proves it wrong or mistaken.

    Despite many reports of 1 million plus attendees, it would not surprise me if the Administration and its MSM sycophants suppress (to the extent it can) or misrepresent the numbers, just as was done with so many of the anti-war protests and the “Million-Man March.”

  4. 4
    Darrell Sikes Said:
    8:45 am 

    I agree with you that this is the largest gathering of conservatives in history. After reading Liberal Facism and The Forgotten Man I think our country is getting more conservative not less. All we need do is go to our roots and let the chains of our Constitution bind our government and leaders.

  5. 5
    Mike Said:
    9:09 am 

    So your point is that this movement is primarily an emotional reaction (reactionary?) to the last election? Thus it is basically non-rational? Must be why Charles Johnson seems to be disgusted with it. But Little Green Footballs seems to be on any true conservative’s shit list now as can be seen in comment #1. If Charles Johnson is to be purged, how far behind are you Rick?

  6. 6
    Chuck Tucson Said:
    9:27 am 

    I hope you’ve all been watching the ‘protester’ interviews on almost all major news outlets. It’s like watching old episodes of Jaywalking on the Tonight Show.

    Please tell me that the news organizations are intentionally picking these people to produce an intelligence bias in viewers. Tell me it’s a liberal conspiracy, because wow.

  7. 7
    kitchener Said:
    10:04 am 

    I read your columns at AT on a regular basis and generaly agree,but there is some truth to the accusations that talk radio can be racist and dangerous.
    Obama is a deluded fool and poseur but he won the election and in a democracy , you get the goverment you deserve…Obama has the potential to be the most hated president since Lincoln and we all know what happened to him …don’t we !!
    There is an evil leitmotif running through American History of political assassinations and the conspiracy theory wingnuts are well armed and dangerous , the same fetted swamp of the mind that produced Mccviegh….God help us!! …anything but that

  8. 8
    SSG Christopher Whitaker Said:
    10:30 am 

    Mr. Tucson,

    While I do believe that the…how shall I say, less intelligent (?)…members of our group are the ones that tend to be chosen, I hardly want to make out like it is some kind of conspiracy. I would argue that the kinds of folks that like to plaster their faces all over the television are usually not the sharpest knives in the drawer. But remember also that in a large group like this, even if only 10% is intellectually limited, you are still going to find plenty of dunces. There are plenty of persons who understand the stakes, understand what is involved and would be able to communicate those ideas quite clearly. After all, they probably sound better than the majority of people I have heard at “anti-war” rallies, where you can’t get much more than the same tired, old slogans and talking points like “No Blood for Oil” and so on.

  9. 9
    KEC Said:
    11:08 am 

    The twenty somethings are starting to catch on that mandatory health insurance is a massive tax on youth. They will be goosestepped into paying for health care coverage they do not feel they need and that, as a group, they do not use.

    The over 40s recognize instantly Obama’s socialist/Marxist roots (nationalized banks, automobile companies, the politics of envy), recall the horror and cruelty that arose from 20th Century authoritarian governments and their programs, and viscerally reject plans to do that to them and theirs. That the enforcement will come in the form of stringent reporting requirements to an IRS that is incapable of understanding the existing tax code should fill all Americans with horror. That current Federal budgets funnel $8 Billion to the ACORN voter fraud and intimidation machine also vividly connects with this generation.

    The over 60’s understand all of that and that they are being shoved onto the ice floe as medicare is “reformed” into a classic government rationing board mentality. All to free up a few more Federal dollars to rejuvenate the great Democrat quid pro quo machine.

  10. 10
    Surabaya Stew Said:
    11:15 am 

    Oh, this will have an impact allright. I predict the Tea Party Protesters will have the same impact on Obama’s decision making as the Anti-War protesters in 2003 had on Bush Jr.’s decision making.

  11. 11
    John Burke Said:
    11:53 am 

    Rick is right. It’s historic. It’s plainly the first time — certainly in modern American history — that conservatives, however defined, have mounted “direct action” protests on a large scale (some anti-abortion demos over 25 years have been fair-sized and newsworthy but never on this scale).

    B ut I think he’s off base to try to decoupke the protest from talk radio, Fox News, etc. I think it improbable that any of this would happen without them — and without the now-highly-influential blogosphere.

  12. 12
    mannning Said:
    12:38 pm 

    You castigate Limbaugh, Hannity, Beck, Savage, et al, over and over, as if your voice could reach their audiences to deflect the messages, or at least to influence your own audience against their so-called “pop” and inflammatory commentary.

    I suggest that the conservative movement needs a bit of inflaming and enthusiasm to get some real motion going in preparation for the elections next year. There has been far too much passivism, wringing of hands and intellectual congestion, if not misdirection, of late.

    Not all members of the movement have the insight, information or analytical abilities seen here, and those people do not read your blog either. They do listen by the millions to Limbaugh and company, and follow the leads they hear: witness the turnout in DC.

    Calling these commentators out is not exactly a smart maneuver on your part, but, then, it seems that you are trying to plow new, more centrist, intellectual, and secular conservative ground anyway, and the idea of trying to build a more cohesive, right-of-center and religious conservative thrust seems to be, and is, anathema to that direction.

    I further suggest that more simple, accurate, and direct messages of opposition to Obama, his apologetic foreign policies, his czar-ridden administration, ACORN, the Democratic-controlled Congress and their profligate programs is what brings out the most voters to the side of conservatism.

    The simplest message of all is:”Throw the liberal bums out!”

  13. 13
    retire05 Said:
    2:07 pm 

    When the Tea Party movement first started, it was ignored by the Progressive (MSM) Media as being just a bunch of nuts and kooks who were mad because a black man had been elected President. “This will never go anywhere and the kook movement is doomed” they shouted.

    But there are a few things that most do not want to pay attention to.

    When average Americans showed up at the recent town hall meetings with their elected representatives, they came with Congressional bills in hand. They had gone on line and read the bills, and although they were not Constitutional lawyers, they were smart enough to know that this was not just a way to help the uninsured, it was a total revamping of our entire health care system. They had gone on line and had read TARP and the “cap and trade” bill and they knew what was in them. Again, these ordinary Americans, who had never protested in any way, were showing up telling Congress critters “Enough is enough.”

    Take a look at the signs you saw yesterday. And look at the people. You did not see mass produced signs being carried by throngs of people all wearing the same [purple] t-shirts. What you saw were home made signs and Americans in normal street clothes. You saw 30-something Americans who have recently bothered to read the Constitution for the first time since they tried to skim through it in high school civics class. Only this time, they REALLY read it. You saw Americans who understood that they have a responsibility to leave the America they love, and grew up in, to the next generation.

    They have been called Nazis, racists, kooks, birthers, radical right-wingers and every name that is possible for the media and the DNC to throw at them. They have been dismissed, discounted and yes, abused by those who placed no importance on them. They have been labeled “insurance company” shills yet the media, and the DNC has never provided any proof that any protester has been paid by any insurance company. But they spent their own money, hired their own buses, and loaded up for D.C. with no one but some neighbor organizing them. So for as much as the media tries to dismiss the marchers yesterday by only showing the worst of the placards (Obama as Hitler by a LaRouche supporter) and none of the ones slamming the entire Congress, it will only anger more Americans who feel they are not being represented honestly in an industry that has clearly sold out to their own 1970’s standards.

    NEWS FLASH TO THE MEDIA AND THE DEMOCRATS:

    If you want someone to work against you, continue to insult them.

    Surabaya Stew, to equate this to the Code Pink protesters during the Bush administration is wrong. This is a movement in numbers that can only be equated to the late 60’s-early 70’s anti-war protesters and to think that they should be dismissed is to not understand that protests CAN change the policies of the government, for had not young university students, backed by the CPA, taken to the streets with speakers like Jane Fonda and John Kerry, we would not have withdrawn from Vietnam when we did.

    Why now, the left askes. Why not during the Bush administration? The answer is simple. Everything has a breaking point, a saturation point. A point where the bucket is full to the brim and the handle can’t hold the weight of the water.

    There is a change coming in America, but it is not the change that the current administration counted on. As Americans realize that they can no longer rely on the media for accurate information, they are turning to blogs, such as this one, to present them will a little honesty. And blame talk radio as you will, you do so at your peril for you see, Americans are not stupid and will listen only to make their own decisions on what is happening. Remember to old adage “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink”.

    For an administration that seems to be so “tech” saavy, you would think it would realize that the internet can also be its enemy as it tries to shove down the throats of Americans policies that are non-typical of our American system.

    You see, some of us have also read Alinsky and know that we can use the same tactics against the left as the left has used Alinsky’s tactics against conservatives.

  14. 14
    Chuck Tucson Said:
    2:40 pm 

    retire05 said:

    Again, these ordinary Americans, who had never protested in any way, were showing up telling Congress critters “Enough is enough.”

    I guess you’ve gotta start some time.

  15. 15
    funny man Said:
    3:35 pm 

    Sometimes I really wonder if the message is not lost by constantly looking at things that don’t matter like how many people were there, how did the media present the protests, are the characterizations fair are we ‘better’ protesters than the left. This really doesn’t matter. When the civil right marchers were active in the sixties they were also ridiculed, ignored etc. However, they had a clear message and they fortunately prevailed because of their dedication and persistence. Just my 2 cents.

  16. 16
    funny man Said:
    4:48 pm 

    retire 05,
    a lot of what you say makes sense. However, why always bring up the media and Alinsky. Just a bit predictable for my taste. Some on the left distort the right and vice versa; nothing to get exited about. My eyes just glaze over when I go to a right wing blog and I see this Alinsky fellow all the time. Never read him but I just don’t see why he should be so important. Is he so much more convincing than Machiavelli?

  17. 17
    sota Said:
    5:57 pm 

    “I guess you’ve gotta start some time.”

    (I don’t know that Chuck was making this point directly, but it’s as good of a place to start as any.)

    The “why weren’t you protesting when Bush was spending like a madman?” theme is a tired one. It’s a reasonable point to make if you’re on the left, but it’s a blip on the radar at best. To discount ideology entirely in the protests/demonstrations would be lunacy. There would still be outrage if Bush was spending the way Obama is proposing (and has done), but of course there’d be much more equivocating by the right. And there would definitely be much more leeway given (and excuses made).

    But that is no reason to diminish the merit of the complaints entirely. The demonstrators have a beef with Obama that is partly ideological and partly principled. A small number have been consistently voicing opposition while Bush was spending madly, but not in the numbers we’re seeing now. To dismiss the complaint simply because many of these same people weren’t voicing them during the Bush years is misguided.

    It no more diminishes the argument being made now than it does the Bush years’ anti-war movement that has largely vanished from the headlines now that Obama is in office. That movement may resurrect itself if Obama decides to increase troop levels even further in Afghanistan, but the numbers will be much smaller. Those will be the principled few who don’t care what ideology you are.

    Argue the point. Don’t dismiss it simply because someone is late to the party or ideologically driven to the debate.

    Being a hypocrite makes you certain things, but it doesn’t necessarily make you wrong.

  18. 18
    Moltenorb Said:
    7:07 pm 

    Rick said:

    “…the historical significance of the event; that it represents the first truly mass movement of conservatives in American history.”

    Then Rick said:

    “This is not “dangerous” by any stretch of the imagination”

    I say:

    If it’s “the first” time this has happened…How do you know for sure that it’s not dangerous??

    War protesters vandalized property on a regular basis…but you guys have the guns…and you have no problem toting them around at events like this..

    I’m not saying it will, but anything can happen…especially with Beck, Hannity, Rush and Savage at the helm..

    What happens if health care reform passes?

    God forbid we get a public option…the T-partiers would go apeshit..

  19. 19
    Mike Said:
    7:32 pm 

    I was very skeptical of the Tea Party stuff when it first started. But you know what? Good for them for getting involved. I volunteered for Obama and it felt good to get involved. If we can all tone down the anger we might actually have a good dialog about these super-important issues facing the country.

  20. 20
    Doug King Said:
    9:17 pm 

    Mike,

    “If we can all tone down the anger we might actually have a good dialog about these super-important issues facting the country.” What a radical idea! How about we start by not using hate words to characterize our opposition?

    Given differing political visions, I’m convinced America must be governed from somewhere in the middle. We would do well to come down from our holy mountain of principle and explore the middle ground. But the very idea of compromise is repugnant to partisans.

  21. 21
    Travis Monitor Said:
    10:15 pm 

    “I received an email from a long time reader yesterday who was concerned I couldn’t see that the protests were, at bottom, “anti-American, racist, and dangerous…””

    How did this person pick that up? Too many American flags? The coal miner who spoke in a hard-hat? The playing of “God Bless America”?

    If the numbers cracked 100,000 it was the largest taxpayer protest in American history and has as much significance as the Boston Tea Party, which was much smaller… and yes - WAS anti-authority and ‘dangerous’.

    “I predict the Tea Party Protesters will have the same impact on Obama’s decision making as the Anti-War protesters in 2003 had on Bush Jr.’s decision making.”

    Obama is the New Bush, they share that trait of stubbornness … CALL BHO GEORGE THE THIRD.

  22. 22
    Travis Monitor Said:
    10:22 pm 

    “If Charles Johnson is to be purged”
    LGF has been crapping on conservatives of various stripes for a while now, its a sort of Palin derangement syndrome.
    It was bad enough when his crowd was calling a GOP congressman a ‘birther’ on the basis of said congressman (who is NOT a birther) being polite to a constituent who was.

    But the day I decided to not bother with his stie anymore was saturday, when this amazing rally was reported by him to have ‘too many obama=hitler signs’. Bashing the Tea Partiers as kooks. Yet on no real pics did I see any such sign, AND I saw a sea of “Dont tread on me” (a libertarian favorite flag) and American flags. And many other smart, funny, to-the-point yet decent and respectable homemade signs.

    In short, he’s been reduced to parroting the kind of lame talking points found on dKos. This kind of wee-weeing (as BHO would put it) on the extreme right is done with a lot more class by Frum and Co. Big yawn.

  23. 23
    Travis Monitor Said:
    10:23 pm 

    “Given differing political visions, I’m convinced America must be governed from somewhere in the middle. ”

    Ah yes, bipartisanship. Given the choice between going port or starboard to avoid the iceberg in front of the ship of state, we compromise and go full straight ahead!

  24. 24
    Aaron Said:
    10:58 pm 

    You know it’s one thing when people protested Bush with “he’s not MY president” and were against the war in Iraq. Obama has not started 2 wars, or given away the treasury to Wall Street (Bush’s doing) - yet he is taking more than political heat for it. When the tea baggers are armed with guns and signs that say “Obama = Hitler” and protesters say “We are losing our country, we think the Muslims are moving in and taking over.” and quoting Tim McVey’s favorite “Blood of tyrants” line. And they have about a dozen Conservative radio hosts and a TV network all daring these people to take the country back “by any means necessary” I am waiting for Glenn Beck to openly advocate assassination - he’s not far from it.

  25. 25
    Surabaya Stew Said:
    12:40 am 

    Surabaya Stew, to equate this to the Code Pink protesters during the Bush administration is wrong. This is a movement in numbers that can only be equated to the late 60’s-early 70’s anti-war protesters and to think that they should be dismissed is to not understand that protests CAN change the policies of the government, for had not young university students, backed by the CPA, taken to the streets with speakers like Jane Fonda and John Kerry, we would not have withdrawn from Vietnam when we did.

    retire05: You and I must have different sets of facts when it comes to the Iraq War protests, as I seem to recall a large number of hundred thousand plus demonstrations and barely seem to recall Code Pink at all. At any rate, comparing the Tea Party movement to the Anti-Iraq War movement seems pretty relevant when comparing Obama with Bush Jr.

    To be sure, I was born after the Vietnam war so I can’t personally compare Saturdays protest to the John and Jane show…but didn’t those demonstrations take YEARS to have an effect on national policy? (And haven’t a number of historians concluded that the protests actually caused more deaths by encouraging Johnson and Nixon to intensify the bombing campaign?) Every president gets a number of opportunities to impose his platform upon the nation and Obama is just carrying out what he promised to do, protests be damned. I understand the anger behind much of this, because once Obamacare passes it won’t ever be repealed…but the Iraq War can’t be undone either!

  26. 26
    Edward Will Said:
    5:58 am 

    As one of the protesters marching on the Capitol Saturday, I can tell you that this grass-roots action is real and will have an impact on the current health care debate as well as other sweeping changes this Administration and its far left supporters are proposing. We came in two buses from Missouri, not knowing one another, with no real organization other than using emails, and virtually none of us with any experience in such a protest. For many, it was the first trip to Washington D.C. We made our own signs, expressing our various sentiments. Some of us wore t-shirts with Missouri Mob on the back, printed up in just a past week. If there was any one theme, it was a deep concern for the reckless spending by Congress and its impact on our nation’s future, the disregard for the U.S. Constitution, and the contempt our politicians have for the voice of the people they are supposed to be representing. Speaking only for myself, if we ever have to go back to D.C., it will be with two Constitutional Amendments in hand: Term Limits and Balanced Budget.

  27. 27
    Art Said:
    8:24 am 

    I penned a special column for PJ Media on the 9/12 protests yesterday, pointing out the historical significance of the event; that it represents the first truly mass movement of conservatives in American history.

  28. 28
    Art Said:
    8:27 am 

    “I penned a special column for PJ Media on the 9/12 protests yesterday, pointing out the historical significance of the event; that it represents the first truly mass movement of conservatives in American history.”

    AT LEAST NOT SINCE THE CIVIL WAR!!!

    This is about a party of ME against a party of WE - WE will alway win.

  29. 29
    Kay B. Day Said:
    9:17 am 

    Many of the seniors are there because of the impact of HR 3200 on Medicare. If you actually read the legislation (as well as language in the “Recovery” bill), it’s obvious where many of the cost-savings will originate. That’s already happening btw–some items previously covered by Medicare are no longer covered, according to one individual who called me. The side rub: you can’t collect social security unless you enroll in Medicare, a restriction I believe is unconstitutional.

    I agree with you about the GOP. Based on what is happening in Florida, I’ve come to the conclusion of many. GOP leadership is rendering the party dem-lite. I do not believe the protests indicate support for a GOP platform because at the moment I do not see a GOP platform or a clear statesman/stateswoman speaking for the party.

    Frankly I believe the current political climate provides great opportunity for the Libertarians.

  30. 30
    HyperIon Said:
    12:27 pm 

    So numbers aren’t important but then at the end you slip in a number:

    Hundreds of thousands of people at the Capitol…

    When did you pull that number from?
    Can’t be ABC. So..who says hundreds of thousands?

  31. 31
    Richard bottoms Said:
    1:21 pm 

    “Small moves, Ellie. Small moves…” was the advice that Elenore Arroway’s dad gave to the youngster as she fiddled with the dial of her ham radio in the film Contact. By moving the dial in small increments, she was much more likely to be rewarded by making contact with another ham radio enthusiast.

    Hundreds of thousands of people at the Capitol yesterday gave President Obama the same message.

    To take you movie analogy further, in Contact we were faced with a radio message, an historic even and one that required a response of some nuance and precision with some question as to the worth of the final result.

    Unfortunately the movie that Obama found himself in upon taking office was Armageddon, with a giant financial asteroid heading towards the Earth and not much time to respond. (Lehman collapse, AIG)

    During the time the scientists worked on their solution smaller, quite devastating impacts were felt. (GM collapse)

    Failing to stop the rock was not an option, so the government threw the most outlandish and highly expensive solution they could at the problem, and it worked.

    There’s still a big mess to clean up from the other collisions (Foreclosure mess), but it appears the worst has been avoided.

    And that was what happened in movie terms.

    It’s unclear whether the second half of this double feature is Land of the Lost or Iron Man 2.

    Time will tell.

  32. 32
    Vins Nash Said:
    12:22 pm 

    ‘ There’s nothing ‘anti-American’ about protesting anything. We are, after all, a nation born out of protest, nurtured in the bosom of contrarianism, and defining progress by going against the grain in order to right significant wrongs in our society.

    Hmmm, were you saying that about protest in 1968 - 1972? Or maybe you were just too young.

    Heh - I was saying back then how grand it was to protest the war. I was a radical lefty until the age of 23. Then I grew up.

    ed.

  33. 33
    James Said:
    2:33 pm 

    Still clinging to the “hundreds of thousands” lie.

    There were less than 80,000 people there. Period. That’s a lot of people, but you just can’t lie it higher.

  34. 34
    Political Blog Weekly: 18 September 2009 | U.S. Common Sense Pinged With:
    4:09 pm 

    [...] New?" A Soldier’s Perspective - "Tea Party Post Show" Right Wing Nut House - "Debate Over Tea Party Protest Numbers Masks the Real History Made" Disillusioned Words - "Conservatives Make Me Smile" Chicagoray’s Views and News - [...]

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