Is Mark Meckler good p.r. for our county?

Not too many folks around here nowadays wind up being written about or quoted in the national or out-of-town media. We’re known more for our scenic beauty and history than anything else.

An exception, when it comes to drawing media attention, is Mark Meckler, the Nevada County attorney who is a national leader of the Tea Party Patriots. He’s been in the media a lot lately.

Some examples:

*”Meckler psyched up the crowd–which grew to around 60 people as members trickled into Senate offices–by giving bigger and bigger estimates of the 9/12 march’s attendance.” – “Mark Meckler revs up the ‘die-in’ crowd” from Washington Independent

*”Mr. Meckler appeals to his Tea Party kindred to make the Christmastime ‘sacrifice’ to come out and feign sickness and death, noting that ‘throughout history American Patriots have made far greater sacrifices than this to protect our liberty.'” – “Protesters to die in the Senate” from New York Times

*”At a Capitol Hill rally today, the Tea Party Patriots’ Mark Meckler claimed that a Lieberman staffer threatened to have the right-wing activist arrested.” – Alternet

*”‘We are a leaderless movement and that’s a good thing. I don’t think you’re going to see a unified movement yet,’ said Mark Meckler, a Grass Valley (Nevada County) attorney who is a national coordinator for the Tea Party Patriots, which claims to reach 15 million people nationwide.” – “Tea Party Radicals Gear up for 2010 Elections” from the San Francisco Chronicle.

*In the Canadian Post’s account of the “die in” in Washington this month, Meckler also was quoted. The same article included this detail: “Alongside the protest being held on stage, a disturbing anti-abortion protest took place nearby.

“A man dressed as the Grim Reaper pretended to whip three individuals dressed as Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and Barack Obama, all covered in fake blood. It appeared to be the same protesters who held a similar protest on the Hill in October.”

We’re a diverse group of people here, in terms of talents, experience, background and politics. People who read these articles might be surprised to learn our county voted for Charlie Brown, not Tom McClintock, for Congress.

I often wonder what others think about our county when they read all this, including some of the more sensational details of the protests.

If the Tea Party politics has legs in getting members elected to office in 2010, perhaps we’ll be “trailblazers.” If it fails, we might just be perceived as a little more backwater and “rednecky.”

In the meantime, our county’s population continues to decline. What kind of p.r., if any, will help reinvigorate us?

Author: jeffpelline

Jeff Pelline is a veteran editor and award-winning journalist - in print and online. He is publisher of Sierra FoodWineArt magazine and its website SierraCulture.com. Jeff covered business and technology for The San Francisco Chronicle for years, was a founding editor and Editor of CNET News, and was Editor of The Union, a 145-year-old newspaper in Grass Valley. Jeff has a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley and a master's from Northwestern University. His hobbies include sailing and trout fishing.

8 thoughts on “Is Mark Meckler good p.r. for our county?”

  1. Sad… a very, very small group of folks that show who clueless some folks are. The silent majority, no way, just a small clan of haters.

  2. Although Stan Meckler has informed me I am no friend of the Tea Party Patriots, I have to say that (IMO) “are they good PR for the county” isn’t the best way to frame things. Is that how we should be leading our lives?

    Yes they make us something of a joke, as do some other local folks; but so?

    (As a national microcosm we seem to be getting better and better, though – what else do we need? besides, say, honest discourse between people who disagree…)

  3. Re health care reform, BTW, the best short summary I’ve seen of the Republican positions and objections thereto is on TNR starting here (link), about halfway down – “Finally, there is health care….For numerous well-documented reasons, the market for health care does not work like the market for normal goods. …” and continuing on succeeding pages.

  4. Jeff,
    I am sure your article on the Mekklers will not go unnoticed and without repercussions from the right. I wonder if they are making headway considering the utter failure of our government in most arenas. Please keep us posted on your future contacts with the Tea Baggers

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