Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Extreme Americans: Report from the Harrisburg Tea Party

By Audrie Zettick Schaller, Brain-Jockey

It may have rained--even poured--but it didn't seem to dampen spirits at the Tax Day Tea Party on the Capitol steps in Harrisburg. I was there and agree with other sources that there were at least 1,000 people in attendance. (Addendum 4/16: some official accounts say 2,000 were there). Many more who were less willing to get chilled to the bone repeatedly drove by in their cars, taking photos, shouting in agreement...but we're not counting those. Imagine if the weather had been clearer.

Here's a quickly-produced YouTube video of the event.

Notice all the extreme Americans present, engaged in behavior that is downright threatening:

  • Chanting inciteful slogans (USA, USA).
  • Spontaneously breaking into song (God Bless America).
  • Bringing food and personal items to donate to The Bethesda Mission. Voluntarily. The way we like it.

Proud to be among these great folks.

By the way, that's me and my daughter in the still photo with the signs. We were interviewed by the ABC affiliate in Harrisburg. This was her first protest. Aren't we "Smart Girls." And Extreme Americans.


Anonymous said...

This was a manufactured event by the same people who got us into this mess to begin with. Shame on you for not realizing this, and casting off the yoke of big money which have you and your ilk firmly in their grip.

Where were you over the last eight years as trillions were sucked from our economy? Where were you while members of our military were electrocuted while taking showers in a war forced upon us by liars looking to enrich their "friends"?

How can you be morally opposed to deficit spending, and big business when that embodies the Republican party since Reagan? Seriously, you folks can not possibly be this bloody naive?

I'm sorry, but once again a few thousand just showed millions of us how absolutely clueless the conservative base is.


Natalie said...

It looks like you had a great event in Harrisburg! Thank you for sharing with us, and for taking on the role of "citizen reporter." It's quite a shame that we were put in that position by the media, but in the great tradition of this country, when we're needed, we just get things done.

To your anonymous poster--and don't you love the anonymity of the internet--it really is sad that the MSM has fooled you so. You are certainly right that most of us were not vocal before now, but that does not make the message we bring any less valid. Should we have stood together sooner? Most Definitely! But, surely you can see the way we're being dismissed by the liberal media and realize that, in the face of such contempt, it takes a lot to stand up and insist on being heard. We're not claiming to have behaved perfectly in the past. But we are demanding that our politicians get their acts together now--Democrat AND Republican--Fed all the way down to the local elected officials. Enough is enough.

I think your post does beg the question though: What part, exactly, did you play that enabled you to determine that our events were "manufactured?" I was in Texarkana, TX and can assure you that the only ones manufacturing anything were the 5 or so women standing with me to manufacture an understanding of starting a political rally and gathering up our like-minded townspeople. Unless you're a politician, we're not here to change your mind. We realize very clearly that many do support the direction this nation is headed. But we are convinced that enough of us didn't stand up against that direction in the past, and we are committed to doing so now, and in the future. I think we're all ready for CHANGE, to borrow a word from our President.

vlos said...

Well anonymous sounds as uniformed as the rest of the left...too bad the left didn't have their own tea parties to protest spending the last eight years. Oh, I forgot, they want spending as long as it is for funding abortions around the world, paying people to buy homes they don't qualify for and can't repay; any spending as long as it pays for their "pet" project.

If there is any hypocrisy it is the left...listen to their leaders on MSNBC, NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN...the ones who made vulgar jokes about American citizens exercising their rights to protest, just like the students who recently rioted at the University of North Carolina...they had the right to voice their opinions and they were violent...but I forget they are members of the "elite" left and it is ok for them to protest and be violent.

The Americans protesting on April 15th, 2009 joined together in peaceful events across America showing their concern and fears of what is to come if the out of control Federal Government is not reigned in and soon. This is not a Republican/Democratic/Independent movement....this is an American movement...what a novel idea...Americans standing up for freedom from the Federal Government.

Anonymous needs to form her own protest and maybe she/he wouldn't feel left out.

JoyFull said...

Good Reporting! And thank you for sharing. This was grassroots all the manufacturing or concerted organizing. Most of the tea partys were started 1-2 weeks ago, maybe more around the table visiting, word of mouth and the general disgust at how out of touch and out of control the government has become. The theme that seemed to prevail at the 2 events I attended in Mobile and Fairhope Alabama was the total disregard for our Constitution!! This administration seems to act as if there is no Constitution...this is tryanny!
I too have to ask Anonymous what have you activley done to help stop the economic woes?

Brain-Jockey: Audrie Schaller said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brain-Jockey: Audrie Schaller said...

To anonymous: Actually over the past 20 years, I've:

--Run for Congress, sometimes opposing my own party.
---Run for and gotten elected to countywide office, where I eliminated an unnecessary job, improved office performance, staff training, interdepartment cooperation and collections of fees from criminals to help underwrite our office activities and lessen reliance on taxpayer $$.
--Raised "Smart" kids who can think for themselves and who are involved in the community. We have written to injured vets, my scout troop has sent about 30 Cartons of cookies to Iraq and elsewhere. They also read and watch a variety of media, to learn all perspectives.
--Written letters to the editor on numerous issues. And more.

I must have been missing something, as no big business or "BIG MONEY" paid me to be there at the tea party. And ONE OF THE MAIN REASONS many us oppose the bailout (yes, that was started under BUSH, and we opposed it then) is because it amounts to CORPORATE WELFARE. So it seems we agree on something---"big money" needs to stay out of politics. I think that every time I'm at an event and some big money group--shall we name some--has bused in people who don't even know why they are there. You can check my personal blog for my article on card check for info on that.

So, what have you been doing the past 8-20 years?

BTW--Thanks for reading. Any well-reasoned comments always welcome. The more we learn how the other side views things, the better we can make our arguments. I prefer no name-calling. So I'm not going to use the same terminology that you did. I'm a Smart Girl.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your responses, however, what exactly are you protesting?

Where I live the protest was a solidarity meeting between hate groups, with a few people standing around confused at what they were seeing. I guess the folks here didn't get that memo from Stormfront.

Ostensibly, the protest I suppose was about taxes, taxes I might add that were lowered for 95% of Americans and increased to Clinton levels for the wealthiest amongst us. Which begs the question, what exactly were you protesting against?

Perhaps you are protesting the billions that we are pumping into failed businesses such as AIG. The Republicans did this in secrecy with No strings attached. Obama on the other hand continues to push for full disclosure and recent efforts by congress for nasty repercussions with regards to people taking the money have these same businesses scrambling to give it back.

But speaking of billion dollar giveaways, where is your ire over Haliburton and a plethora of other no bid contracts worth billions in Iraq? Where is your ire for free land grants to Big Oil corporations under the Bush administration (drill baby drill with no strings attached is a recipe for disaster in a world market).

The Stimulus Plan was a necessity born out of the current crisis, and if any of you would read up on the Great Depression you would find your same arguments presented by the Republicans during that era. But do you learn from their efforts, nope.

Finally, we have Fox heavily promoting this event for a "grassroots" movement that was begun last August. August of 2008? How in the heck is that not a staged event? And if it is, who in the heck staged it? Who has the most to lose?

Big money. Congratulations on being duped once again, which is a shame, because many of you seem like good hard working people.

Rick Beagle <-- my apologies for not signing the earlier post, but I have been here long enough, well I just assumed you knew who it was.

Kathy E. said...

Thanks for the news from my former hometown. My friend and I attended the Monroe, NC Tea Party with our teenage sons. I drove our mini-van and no one paid us to be there. The crowd was small, (200 to 300), but then Monroe is a small town. The attendees couldn’t have been more well-behaved.
I read anonymous/Rick Beagle’s posts with interest, then amusement. His posts contain many fallacies of distraction that even my daughter’s high school logic class could easily identify.
As far as the history of the Great Depression is concerned, FDR chose to implement his agenda rather than implement policies that would actually stimulate the economy. In September 1931, the national unemployment rate was 17.4% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 140 (down 200 points from the year before). By January 1938, after years of government expansion and increased spending, unemployment was still 17.4% and the DOW – 121. So much for government solutions.
Anyway, judging from the reaction of many on the left, including Paul Begala, on Imus, and Janine Garafalo, on NBC News, it seems the left isn’t interested in a serious discussion, only in attacking hard-working average Americans by making unsubstantiated allegations and engaging in hate mongering. So much for tolerance.

Anonymous said...

Kathy E.,

So what exactly were you protesting Kathy E.? Why exactly were you there?

Were you protesting the tax cuts received by 95% of the population or the "increase" in the tax rates that the wealthiest just received?

Were you perhaps concerned about our deficit spending? Perhaps a trip over to (look at the debt vs GDP chart) might help clear that up for you.

As to FDR's policies, you really ought to read a book authored by a nonpartisan writer. Your views aren't even remotely close to being true.

"So much for tolerance"? You just attended a rally (with a child!) heavily promoted and attended by racist organizations and you lecture us on tolerance?


Rick Beagle

Kathy E. said...


Would you mind telling me exactly what "raciest organization" sponsored and promoted the Monroe, NC Tea Party? I'm sure the African-American gentlemen who spoke so eloquently, and the other African-American and Hispanic attendees would like to know.

Since we're swapping reading lists, I'd like to suggest a book on logic. It will strengthen your arguments.

Anonymous said...

Stormfront amongst others, promoted these events heavily. You can do a search on You Tube for video from these events and plainly see the racist elements. If you can not find any, please do not hesitate to ask.

If you genuinely did not know, then my sincere apologies to you, you and your child were used. Next time read more than just one source.

But despite your comments on logic, you failed to answer any of the questions I posed? Perhaps you are confusing your lack of reading comprehension skills with deficiencies in logic. Or perhaps I am assuming you are actually aware of that which is referred and you really are just ignorant?

Maybe we need to spend a little less on defense(>32%) and a little more on public education(<2%)?

Rick Beagle

Anonymous said...

I actually feel poorly in my treatment of Kathy E. It occurs to me that she might actually be unaware, so let me apologize for my harsh treatment.

As stated, Stormfront and other racial organizations were heavily involved, as were a number of very deep pocketed Republican special interest groups for which Fox news in their mouth piece. Fox News hosted a few of these parties with popular personalities in hopes of driving up attendance, and promoted them heavily on their show. That cost a great deal more money than most grassroots organizations have, so.....

On economic issues, I tend to defer to well respected economist Paul Krugman. You can find his article on the tea partieshere. If you back up a few spaces you will find a ton of information on the economy.

Finally, if you are interested at all in some of the criminal activities of the previous administration feel free to check out Salon, Politico, Fox News, Washington Post, the New York Times, or pretty much any news organization.

Rick Beagle

commoncents said...

I like your blog! Would you like a Link Exchange with mine, COMMON CENTS?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Rick Beagle,

It is not the Federal Government's job to oversee, or fund education. That is up to the States.

It is also not up to the Federal Government to send funds oversees for ANYTHING, much less a abortion.

The only thing I want my Federal Gov't to do is protect me from foreign threat. That is all they are authorzed to do under the Constitution.

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