Tea-party aligned FreedomWorks: “Bring it on” in 2014

Editor’s note: The tea-party aligned FreedomWorks, also aligned with Congressman Tom McClintock and other hard-right politicians, is gearing up for the new year, with this e-blast titled “Bring it on.” High on the agenda: Targeting Common Core and ObamaCare. Will this impact our local elections, in the schools and government? You bet. We’ve already seen the Common Core critics surface in our schools, as reported previously. The operating word is “polarizing.”

“Patriot,

“2013 is coming to a close, and you’ve made a difference. Laws to stop Common Core were introduced in 17 states, Obama’s War in Syria was stopped, ObamaCare Exchanges were defeated in 36 states. And we’ve exposed ObamaCare to all Americans. Today, 57% of Americans oppose ObamaCare!

“That’s what you did last year. That’s what YOU accomplished. I can’t wait for 2014. It’s the year we take our country back. …

“If we start working now, next year will be historic. 2014 will be the year we take our country back. We can do it. Look at what we accomplished last year! More Americans reject ObamaCare than ever before. And 36 states stopped ObamaCare exchanges. And Patriot, the fight against Common Core is going on in 17 states. Next year, we must double that. We can. But we need your help to do it!

“Hundreds of millions of dollars of TV ads didn’t accomplish that. Patriots like you did. That’s why we don’t need to match the Left dollar for dollar. And that’s why next year we can accomplish even more. We’re ten times more productive than they are!

“And right now, you can double your impact. You can DOUBLE your impact – because a few big donors have pledged to match every donation you make dollar for dollar! So please, donate $50, $35, or $15 right now!

“2013 was amazing. I can’t wait for 2014!

“In Liberty,

Matt Kibbe
President and CEO, FreedomWorks”

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 12 years, and he was a founding editor and Editor of CNET News for eight years, among other positions. Jeff has a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley and a master's from Northwestern University. His hobbies include sailing, swimming, and trout fishing in the Sierra.

16 thoughts on “Tea-party aligned FreedomWorks: “Bring it on” in 2014”

  1. Here you go Jeff;

    Here are ten Questions for Tea Partiers that they want or do not want to answer. I say it this way because people who call themselves Tea Partiers do not have the same view of politics, government, Big Business or the Constitution. Their opinions range from pure Libertarian to actively furthering the privileges of plutocracy. Their income and occupational background vary as well, though most seem to be middle-income and up.

    My guess is that most Tea Partiers come from the conservative wing of the Republican Party who are fed up with both the corporate Republicans like Bush and Cheney, as well as the Democrats like Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi.

    With the above in mind, the following questions can serve to go beyond abstractions and generalizations of indignation and get to some more specific responses.

    1. Can you be against Big Government and not press for reductions in the vast military budgets, fraught with bureaucratic and large contractors’ waste, fraud and abuse? Military spending now takes up half of the federal government’s operating budgets. The libertarian Cato Institute believes that to cut deficits, we have to also cut the defense budget.

    2. Can you believe in the free market and not condemn hundreds of billions of dollars of corporate welfare-bailouts, subsidies, handouts, and giveaways?

    3. Can you want to preserve the legitimate sovereignty of our country and not reject the trade agreements known as NAFTA and GATT (The World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland) that scholars have described as the greatest surrender of local, state and national sovereignty in our history?

    4. Can you be for law and order and not support a bigger and faster crackdown on the corporate crime wave, that needs more prosecutors and larger enforcement budgets to stop the stealing of taxpayers and consumer dollars so widely reported in the Wall Street Journal and Business Week? Law enforcement officials estimate that for every dollar for prosecution, seventeen to twenty dollars are returned.

    5. Can you be against invasions of privacy by government and business without rejecting the provisions of the Patriot Act that leave you defenseless to constant unlawful snooping, appropriation of personal information and even search of your home without notification until 72 hours later?

    6. Can you be against regulation of serious medical malpractice (over 100,000 lives lost a year, according to a study by Harvard physicians), unsafe drugs that have serious side effects or cause the very injury/illness they were sold to prevent, motor vehicles with defective brakes, tires and throttles, contaminated food from China, Mexico and domestic processors?

    7. Can you keep calling for Freedom and yet tolerate control of your credit and other economic rights by hidden and arbitrary credit ratings and credit scores? What Freedom do you have when you have to sign industry-wide fine print one-sided “contracts” with your banks, insurance companies, car dealers, and credit card companies? Many of these contracts even block your Constitutional access to the courthouse.

    8. Can you be for a new, clean system of politics and elections and still accept the Republican and Democratic Two Party dictatorship that is propped up by complex state laws, frivolous litigation and harassment to exclude from the ballot third parties and independent candidates who want reform, accountability, and stronger voices for the voters?

    9. If you want a return to our Constitution—its principles of limited and separation of power and its emphasis on “We the People” in its preamble—can you still support Washington’s wars that have not been declared by Congress (Article I Section 8) or giving corporations equal rights with humans plus special privileges and immunities. The word “corporation” or “company” never appears in the Constitution. How can you support eminent domain powers given by governments to corporations over homeowners, or massive week-end bailouts by the Federal Reserve and Treasury Department of businesses, even reckless foreign banks, without receiving the authority and the appropriations from the Congress, as the Constitution requires?

    10. You want less taxation and lower deficits. How can you succeed unless you stop big corporations from escaping their fair share of taxes by manipulating foreign jurisdictions against our tax laws, for example, or by letting trillions of dollars of speculation on Wall Street go without any sales tax, while you pay six, seven or eight percent sales tax on the necessities you buy in stores?

    Let’s hear from you Tea Partiers. Meanwhile, see the work of video-journalist, Steve Ference, who has interviewed and given voice to those among you in his new paperback “Voices of the Tea Party” published by Lulu.com on July 4, 2010. Contact VoicesoftheTeaParty@gmail.com.

    1. A few questions to add to the list (of the thousands that must exist!) that weren’t mentioned specifically:

      How can you be so ideologically opposed to any mention of ‘socialism’ while taking for granted the benefits of the already-socialized parts of our life? Police? Fire? Schools? Medicare? And on the bad side: socialized ill effects of burning fossil fuels? Of slave labor that creates our ability to buy cheap jeans made in Bangladesh? Of the boots-on-the-ground, guns-and-bullets violence around the world that is ‘needed’ to get and protect our ridiculously cheap energy supply chain? No arguments from the Right about that type of socialism… in fact they can’t get enough of it.

      Another massive form of socialized ill effects that got us all where we are today, quite literally, and have left us with civilization-ending liabilities that nobody wants to acknowledge or has any idea how to escape from: the history of water ‘reclamation’, especially in the US West. “Cadillac Desert” is an incredible read.

      Sadly, high word counts and long brilliant impactful essays probably don’t speak to the majority of voters on the Right. It’s a pyramid scheme – the majority of the voters on the Right, at the bottom of the pyramid, don’t have the time or desire, or in many cases, the ability to give any critical thought to these things. (Don’t forget that the Texas board of education voted to remove critical thinking skills from the curriculum last year – sorry, citation is lost in the fray) They just accept the word from those above as gospel. They’ve done a great job of pulling off a viral marketing campaign that would only work if those at the higher levels have no qualms about manipulating those below them. So, how does anyone who wants to promote critical thought undo all that work?

      Nader speaks quite nicely to those who take the time to read and analyze it. It’s definitely part of the overall strategy.

      (Comedy moment: answer to questions 1-9: “YES WE CAN”; compound questions make that grammar a bit dodgy in parts but you get the point. Answer to #10: “By buying votes.” Not as catchy but still within the three-word limit.)

  2. “Don’t need to match the Left dollar for dollar” – THAT’s good comedy! I just read about Donors Trust a bit yesterday. Anyone know more detail on that group? The whole ‘dark money’ topic is pretty interesting, in a Greek tragedy sort of way.

  3. On national news yesterday Karl Rove announced war on far right (including Tea Party). Should be fun to eatch Repubs eat those they birthed.

  4. Jeff you’re always calling people or groups “hard-right.” I don’t think you ever mention “hard-left,” but they’re the same thing…totalitarian controllers. In reality there are two schools of thought…”totalitarian bloated government” or “freedom with less government.” World history has proved it over and over. By the way, how do you like our drones killing civilians in other countries? I thought this was against international law. It definitely makes us look like the bad guys we historically condemned.

    1. Bonnie,
      You’re right. And I’m not fond of the “hard left” either, because I’m not a fan of extremism. Having said that, from my vantage point, the loud and nasty extremism is coming from the right in our community, not the left. I hear all the stories about the “Gang of Four” but I have never experienced it in my eight years here. In San Francisco, I was seen as a conservative. Here, I’m labeled a “local lefty” by the hard right. In fact, I’m in the middle. It’s a peaceful and productive place to be, at least from my experience. Happy New Years to your family. The website McGuire’s Place embodies many wonderful characteristics of our community.

  5. Bonnie and Jeff,
    We all know the political pendulum swings back and forth. At the moment the pendulum is as far right as it has been in living memory. What is considered hard left today would have been considered moderate right during 1940’s- 1970’s. Many of my positions on issues are called left but in reality they are very mainstream or in the majority of Americans.

    Check out the platform of the Republican Party 1956.
    At this point we had
    – tax rate of 91% on income over $400k ($3.5 million in 2013)
    – selective import tariffs protecting American manufacturing
    – 34% private sector unionized
    – massive expanding infrastructure

    I think Eisenhower would be considered a hard left in today’s political atmosphere.
    http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/?pid=25838

  6. What remains of the ‘hard left’ has become irrelevant and impotent. The late Sixties and early Seventies indeed had a news grabbing element of hard lefties that really had nothing in common with the mindset of today’s progressives. There is no real connection, though many of the right extremists continue to promote this false equivalency.

    I consider myself a moderate also. Doing so always draws angry rebuttals from both sides, indicating the lack of respect for the strategy of the founders that created this country and its Constitution: COMPROMISE!!

    And Bonnie, I would — and could — make a compelling argument that the vectors of power over the course of the world since the disciplines of History and historiography evolved would convincingly demonstrate that past realities of social grouping and action can not be simplified into only two schools of thought, such as you proclaimed and named.

    And is the answer to terminating use of our lethal drones a return to the type of people that initiated those programs. BTW, use of drones, IMO, was initiated by those now on the receiving end of mechanical drones. What is a suicide bomber or a planter of a car bomb but a human drone, killing more innocents more frequently than high tech drones. How is this modernization of assassination any worse than the assassinations regular ordered by “The Old Man of the Mountain, Rashid Al-Din Sinan” whom even frightened Salah ed-din, during the era of the Islamic Reconquista of Jerusalem or the fertile killing grounds of Christian nobility and The Knights Templars?

    I’m not a Christian, — although probably much more like Jesus’ idea of a Christian of his future that the loud, sanctimonious people calling themselves Christians, like the creatures of the Louisiana lagoons, the Duck killing dynasty — but do take notice when I learn of another ‘Human Drone’ attack aimed at Christians in Iraq or Sudan, or anywhere and the ensuing body count of innocent dead and maimed.

    Ideologically paralyzed political animals rarely benefit mankind, whether they plied their wars two millennia ago, or are jostling for power now, to enforce their vision of a government for ‘some of the people.

    Let’s hope that the ‘Better angles of our nature” enable all to have a happier new year.

  7. For the record, I consider myself on the left and am proud of it. It is safe to say I am a progressive/ populist. By today’s standards I am considered hard left when it isn’t even close. I have debated along side communists before and there is a huge difference. I do not trust government to do the correct thing unless we (people) push them to the correct thing. Get government to represent people over profits for big business and the need for Big Government goes away. It is being progressive.

    Liberals work within a corrupt system to make sure everybody can afford to live (program and service oriented)

    Progressives want to reform the corrupt system so everybody can afford to live on their own. (equality in access and opportunity)

  8. It’s a ploy by extremists to paint the other side, not them, as being the extreme ones. It’s interesting what’s going on in the GOP now, between the tea party and Karl Rove. Funny, since Rove was cheered at a Dan Logue fundraiser in 2010 by tea party supporters. This must be very confusing to them.

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