The Tea Party Is Dead… It’s REALLY Official Now…. Long Live The Social Conservatives!!!!

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I wrote this on my blog way back in 2009:

“””I was afraid of this. I am seeing more and more non-fiscal issues getting pushed into the TP agenda. From a link I provided in the previous post, a quote from one of the Tea Party organizers in Madera confirms that the message of fiscal responsibility is slowly being pushed to the side by those with other agendas:

—- The “Tea Parties” initially started as a tax protest movement after Democrats swept the White House and Congress. Rogers wants the “Did You Know” section on the handout to let the public know their movement like the Declaration of Independence isn’t just about taxes. “If people don’t wake up concerning our freedoms, we’re going to find ourselves completely stifled and unable to be a free people anymore.” —-

I haven’t seen the “DYK” part of the handout yet, but…..

Dammit People. Just stick to fiscal stuff. Leave the rest to others!!!!

I have been at odds with my blog-pals over at Gay Patriot, in stating that the reason the Republicans lost their way was because after the Republicans won on the “Contract With America”, fiscal conservatism took a back seat to social conservatism. Sorry Dan, but sooner or later you’re just going to have to admit I’m right on this.””””

In early 2010, I showed how the “Tea Party” was not for fiscal responsibility here:

It became clear early on that the Bush administration was not going to make any effort what-so-ever to address that issue, and instead showed themselves to be more of the same as usual type administration as far as spending is concerned. I didn’t vote for either Bush or Kerry in 2004, and I was so ticked at the economic stupidity on display for the 2008 choices, I wrote in Paris Hilton for President. I figured it couldn’t have been much worse.

You would think I would be a prime candidate for the Tea Party recruiters…. Nope.

I liked the idea, but it quickly became obvious that the weakened Republican party was laying the groundwork for massive infiltration. Running on the ideal of “smaller government” and “less taxes” is fine, but my question is always this: “What are you going to cut?”.

I usually get a response such as: “Well, entitlements are a huge reason why we’re going broke!”

“OK. So how much of the medicare and social security benefits are you going to cut?”.

“Well, we won’t know until we have our guys in office”.

Note that’s not really an answer, and I know I won’t get one. So I go to a different topic – George W Bush. He is universally derided for he spending policies. So I pose this question: “We both know that Bush spent way too much and was a “big government” President. Which of the Bush big government add-ons are you proposing we cut? Medicare-D? No Child Left Behind? Department of Homeland Security?”

I never get an answer.

The fact that the Republicans scored political points against ObamaCare by opposing cuts in medicare is all you need to know about how serious they are about reducing spending.

By September, it was clear that the Social Conservatives had taken over the Tea Party… OK, they had started taking over well before that, but that is when I wrote this concerning the nomination of several “somewhat Christian” candidates:

…political propaganda wise, the nomination of O’Donnell s a Delaware Democrat’s wet dream come true! I’m sure this is just the tip of the tragic iceberg as far as campaign ad fodder goes. The Tea Party has nominated Messianic Sharron Angle, and now the uber-religious O’Donnell. Is the Tea Party now the new Moral Majority? Stay tuned.

And this concerning Social Conservative…. Er, I mean the Tea Party gubernatorial candidate for New York Carl Paladino, who said this about icky gays:

“That’s not how God created us, and that’s not the example that we should be showing our children.”….

At that, I asked:

Someone again please try to convince me that the Tea Party is only concerned about fiscal issues.

Love it when I’m right!!!!!

The “The Faith & Freedom Coalition’s “Road to Majority” Conference“, which featured every prominent person in the republican Party, including many who might run for the Presidency in 2016, just wrapped up their sermon a few days ago. And today, the supposed “Tea Party” Fiscal Conservatives, having realized they’ve failed to pass their fiscal agenda, have reverted back to the more dominant Social Conservative agenda and passed an abortion bill that they know will never stand a chance to become law. It’s just more show to prove their religious bonafides. Can everyone please PLEASE stop pretending now that the Tea Party is nothing but a thin shell surrounding the smoldering inner core of the Social Conservative majority that is the Republican party?

PS. Remember, it is very clear that had only one or two Social Conservatives run for the 2012 Republican nomination instead of the five that split the vote between each other in the early primaries, we very well may have had a Michelle Bachmann or Herman Cain as the Republican nominee instead of Mitt Romney.

PPS. Oh, and one more thing.

A few weeks ago, a guest on the local Chris Daniel radio show (Daniel is a really cool cat, I like his show a lot BTW) was trying to disown Todd “women can’t get pregnant if it’s rape rape” Akin from the Tea Party by saying that Akin was never a Tea Party candidate in the first place.

This is what I wrote on the radio host’s Facebook page:

Chris… Just caught a snippet of your radio show. On the comment that Todd Akin was not a “Tea Party” candidate… Your guest was not being forthcoming. His branch of the Tea Party might not have endorsed Akin, but others certainly did.

Before the scandal broke, there was a lot of press that said flat out he was a Tea Party candidate. From FOX News Aug 8, 2012:

“”Score another win for the Tea Party.

Missouri Rep. Todd Akin broke out of a three-way GOP primary fight Tuesday and won the nomination to take on Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill in the fall. Akin had played up his Tea Party credentials, in an unusual primary race in which all three candidates claimed conservative, outsider appeal.

The results send yet another Tea Party-backed candidate into the general election, with the McCaskill face-off considered one of the most closely watched Senate races of the year. “”

Tea Party Caucus founder Michell Bachmann threw her support to him when he first entered the race.

Here is more support, even after the rape comment went viral. On Aug 24, Reuters reporter Nick Carey wrote:

“”Akin has real Tea Party credentials,” said Bill Hennessy, founder of the St. Louis Tea Party, who lives in Akin’s district and has voted for him since 2000.

Hennessy recalled Akin was the only politician who showed up at the group’s April 15, 2009, “Tax Day” rally in downtown St. Louis and adhered to an order not to do any politicking.

Akin’s ability to straddle America’s two main brands of conservatism — fiscal and social — enabled him to garner enough support from Christian conservatives and Tea Party adherents in the Aug. 7 Republican Senate primary to win by 6 points.

Anyone who thinks the congressman may yet exit the race does not know Akin, said John Putnam, Missouri state coordinator for the national Tea Party Patriots group and chairman of the Jasper County Republican Party, who has known Akin since 1984.””

I just wanted you to be aware of these facts. politics is a strange brutal game. It can be fun, but, if you want to survive, you have to have the commitment not to trust anyone, even someone from your own side.

Changing Minds… My Thoughts On FISA Seven Years Ago

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I find it interesting how people change their minds and views on things. I thought that I’d always been against this program, but I’m wrong in that recollection. That’s the cool thing about blogging and commenting on other blogs. Having the ability to search and find old comments on topics is kind of cool…. An sometimes annoying, as I was all prepared to call out the hypocrites where for the FISA program back in the day, and it looks like I’m one of them!!!! 🙂

This is what I wrote in a comment at Gay Patriot back when the original story broke about the FISA wiretaps at the end of 2005:

  1. At the beginning of the new era, 9/12, many started asking why we Americans aren’t sacrificing more. This was usually couched as a method of furthering a political agenda, as shone here. Well, the NSA wire tapping revelation is an example of the sacrifices that must be made if we are serious about preventing another attack on our soil. And no, this is not like Watergate. In this case, several key members of congress, including Jay Rockerfeller, were briefed periodically about the operation. Each of those members had ample time to express their doubts behind closed doors, and if their doubts were valid, the operation would have probably been shut down. So it’s not as if there were no checks or balances in this case. Also, Bush did not just wake up one day and decide “Hey! I’d be cool to wiretap people without court approval”. This action was set into motion with the approval of the DoJ.

    As for the legalities, I’ll leave that up to the lawyers to decide. But I’d rather have a president who is willing to push the edge of the envelope to try and protect against a future attack, rather than one who wont step over a line or two and thus leaving us more vulnerable to attack.

    Just my thoughts

    Comment by sonicfrog — December 22, 2005 @ 7:29 pm – December 22, 2005

Now I am against them. Unlike many who have changed their minds based on the “D” in front of the name of the current resident of the White House, my change of heart was not due to the events of the last week and changed long ago. I think I’ll have to credit the years of listening to podcaster / history buff Dan Carlin for bringing me around. Government abuse of power has been a constant theme on his “Common Sense” podcast… In fact, he has a brand spanking new podcast out right now covering this topic.

I’ve been looking to see if I had blogged or commented on another blog on the FISA topic between 2006 and now, but so far I haven’t been able to turn anything up. Looking back though, I think this commenter at Gay Patriot expressed the right balance of approval coupled with caution that I wished I would have written or thought at the time.

This is one of these issues that leaves me scratching my head. Even though I’m liberal, I support the government working to do things like, say….stopping terrorists from attacking us again. Using wiretaps on cel phones is clearly something that is helping to accomplish this goal, along with other modern forms of electronic surveillance.

Why is it though that the members of the Bush administration want to sidestep an established court order process for performing these wiretaps. From what I’ve read (and tell me if I’m wrong), the laws as written allow for both secret issuance of court orders and for court orders “after the fact” if it’s deemed necessary to perform a wiretap in a timely manner.

Allowing a goverment to do something completely in secret, may sound good if the initial goals are agreed upon. However, the old saying goes that absolute power corrupts absolutely. If these acts can be used against bona-fide suspected terrorists, what’s to stop someone in position of power in the government from using these against his/her own enemies, perceived or real? Let’s not forget Nixon….his downfall stemmed from the fact that he used what he thought was the power of the presidency to work secretly against his “enemies”.

Comment by Kevin — January 20, 2006 @ 8:20 pm – January 20, 2006

With the revelation of the PRISM program, I think it is safe to say things have gone way too far.

Why I Hold Certain Conservative In Distain.

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I was going to title this post “Why Do I Seem To Pick On Conservatives More Than Liberals????”, but that didn’t seem quite right. Yes, it’s a rant on the “True Conservative”, something that I note I’ve done a lot more of lately than I have to Liberals. This is not a rant against the average Conservative. Many dear friends of mine fit in this category.  I love them dearly and have respect for them even on the occasions when our political views differ.

Oh crap…. I was going to type “To Be Perfectly Clear…” before the next sentence, but it’s come to my attention that President Obama uses that phrase a lot and the next thing he says that follows that is often murky at best….

But…

Never-the-less…

Let me be perfectly clear! 🙂

I hold the rabid members of both groups in great disdain, and won’t hesitate to prick the bubble of a Liberal who I see as behaving badly. I don’t mind having strong disagreements with those either side, and have indeed had plenty from both.  At the end of the day, most of my debating foes are still friends who just disagree.

But there is a line drawn when someone uses ad-homs, lies about me, completely distorts my positions, and uses the tactics that are often found on talk radio. When I say talk radio, I’m not just talking about the obvious kings of the airwaves. In the brief period of time that  Air America existed, most of the content fell into the same patterns and strategies as those used by the more successful right wing demagogs.

Blogs, especially the commenters, too often fall into the same pattern. I don’t go to Althouse much any more because of it.  One blog that is especially bad is Gay Patriot. I used to like going there, and since they started blogging at about the same time I did, I have always felt a bit of kinship, even though we’ve disagreed on matters. Proprietor Dan Blatt, someone I consider a friend,  has posted a number of my blog posts on GP in years past.  But I bowed out last summer because I got sick of the constant derogatory, fallacious, and flat out vile tone of a number of the commenters.

I do go there from time to time just to see what they are talking about. As the PRISM story has been making the rounds, I found that some of the commenters and I do for a change agree on the wrongness of this spying in principle. It was nice to have some agreement with some who don’t normally see eye to eye.  Here is what I wrote, preceded by a comment that I agree with:

  • Try to imagine the Framers saying, “Of course the Post Office should keep a ledger for the government to study, of every person you mail a letter to, plus the weight and thickness of the letter. The Fourth Amendment only protects the content of letters and not information on the date, sender, addressee, weight or thickness, etc. And it’s perfectly normal that the government would want to know about every letter mailed by every citizen and would track them. What, have you got something to hide?”

Comment by ILoveCapitalism — June 7, 2013 @ 10:29 am – June 7, 2013

That.

And the Verizon (and AT&T and T-Mobile and Sprint no doubt) thing is not the worst…

Dan… Strange that you don’t seen to be aware of the much bigger story. Google PRISM, which is the far more damning story that broke yesterday.

Of course, when you do that, the NSA will have not only have the record of you doing that, but also the search parameters, because they are tapped into Google servers, along with Microsoft, YaHoo, Facebook, Apple, Skype, HotMail, etc., and are not just reading “metadata”, but the data itself.

But, I suppose that is also making a mountain out of a molehill, and Hey! We’re all safe now!

As I wrote yesterday on my blog, how difficult is it for the Government to connect the Verizon (AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint) phone number of customer X to all of that persons ENTIRE internet activities?

Not very.

And this can all be done in secret because idiot politician like Chambliss and Feinstein supported, and continue to support, the Patriot Act, which as we all now see, gave the US Government open and complete access to virtually ALL our online activities! And remember, the agencies are now encouraged to share intel with each other.

How did we go from “They might spy on your library records” to this in just one decade?

The former USSR and Stalin would be proud!

PS. Oh… And just think of what they’ll do next now that their precious PRISM program failed to pick up the Boston Marathon plot!

And it can and will be done in secret, because the Patriot Act gives them the cover to do so!

PPS. Good link Live…. Gonna use that to update my blogpost from yesterday…

Comment by Sonicfrog — June 7, 2013 @ 12:48 pm – June 7, 2013

So, all is well….  Until:

  • PS. Oh… And just think of what they’ll do next now that their precious PRISM program failed to pick up the Boston Marathon plot!

    Comment by Sonicfrog — June 7, 2013 @ 12:48 pm – June 7, 2013

    Actually, given the descriptions so far, I find it highly improbable that PRISM failed to pick up the Boston Marathon plot, given that the Tsarnevs were known to multiple government agencies as potential terrorists, with that information having been shared directly to the State Department by the Russians.

    I think it far more probable that the information was deliberately ignored.

    The nicer reason would be that the Tsarnevs, being immigrants, on welfare, located in a blue city, and attending a liberal college, were extended protections from scrutiny or action that would not be similarly applied to US citizens with jobs in a red state.

    The more sinister reason is that Obama wants a Reichstag fire. Given how quickly the Obama Party, the Obama media, and Obama-controlled liberal groups started blaming the Tea Party and conservatives following the bombing, I believe the latter.

    One must remember that Barack Obama, at every level in his political career, has demonstrated that he can and will use private and confidential government information to smear and destroy his opponents. It is the one consistency throughout his political career.

    With that in mind, I would say PRISM is less about keeping us safe than it is about ensuring a permanent Obama Party majority and governmental control. The Obama Party and Barack Obama machine are using this information and this access, with the collusion of the large technology companies, to destroy all opposition to their rule.

    One more point: This was more than obvious to all of us in 2008.

    So at this point, I have ZERO mercy for any supporters of Barack Obama. You can either admit that you are ignorant, greedy racists who voted for Obama based on black skin and the promise of free slop at other peoples’ expense, or you can acknowledge that you are malicious, hypocritical liars who deliberately and knowingly set out to destroy George W. Bush and the Republican Party based on standards that you yourself had no intention of keeping.

    Comment by North Dallas Thirty — June 7, 2013 @ 1:49 pm – June 7, 2013

“standards that you yourself had no intention of keeping.”…. WTF????

I don’t even know what he’s talking about here. But that’s not unusual.

I did not vote for Barrack Obama in either 2008 or 2012, and do not support much of his agenda. I have gone after the current President on many occations. I  have also defended the former President  here on Sonicfrog and elsewhere when I feel that is warranted. I am a registered libertarian, but I’m not sure if that is the right place for me. I am neither Conservative OR Liberal.. I am something… Different!  I have made these facts very clear to all on the GP site, especially to NDT because he always says these weird, nonsensical, and false things about me. But it doesn’t matter. He for years has now has grouped me into this category he calls “an Obama voter”, as if that is some horrible slur.

The above nasty and unprovoked reply / attack / weirdness, what ever you want to call it, is quite tame compared to other stuff he’s regurgitated over and over toward me and other who do not tow the party line….

Hell… We’re actually somewhat in agreement, and he STILL goes all Looney Tunes on me!!!!

Thing is, when I’ve gone to liberal sites, or had conversations with very VERY left wing individuals on Facebook for instance… Sometimes things do get bad, but often it gets worked out, or we agree to disagree.

There has been far far less willingness to step back and just have a normal conversation for many on the Conservative side. But I recognize that the modern Conservative has learned the art of argument from the radio Gods of Limbaugh, Hannity, and Levin, where the ad-hom and insult equals winning an argument.

Yes, it does happen with some left wingers too, but not nearly as prevalent as it does on the right side of things.

The radio icons have taught a generation of Conservatives some very bad manners and mannerisms.

But I’m OK with it. The wholesale adoption of these tactics will sooner or later completely backfire at the pols. And then maybe some form of sanity will return to the GOP.

For now though, I won’t hold my breath.

Connecting The Dots… LIARS!

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So…. The good folks in Washington DC are trying to defend the revelation that the Government has been data mining Verizon communications.  Here’s their defense:

Responding to the disclosure, Senator Dianne Feinstein of California and Senator Saxby Chambliss of Georgia said on Thursday that the order appeared to be a routine reauthorization as part of a broader program that lawmakers have long known about.

“As far as I know, this is an exact three-month renewal of what has been the case for the past seven years,” said Ms. Feinstein, the top Democrat on the Intelligence Committee. It was carried out by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court “under the business records section of the Patriot Act,” she said. “Therefore, it is lawful. It has been briefed to Congress.”

The program appears to warehouse and analyze calling “metadata” — time and number logs showing when communications have been made, but not their content or the name of any subscriber — that the government analyzes to try to identify terrorists. Mr. Chambliss, the intelligence panel’s top Republican, said that under the rules of the program, when a computer program flags a number as suspicious, the authorities return to the national security court for permission to scrutinize that person more closely.

It’s metadata only and it’s what we call minimized,” Mr. Chambliss said. “All of these numbers are basically ferreted out by a computer, but if there’s a number that matches a terrorist number that has been dialed by a U.S. number or dialed from a terrorist to a U.S. number, then that may be flagged. And they may or may not seek a court order to go further on that particular instance. But that’s the only time that this information is ever used in any kind of substantive way.”

Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina, told reporters on Thursday that he did not have a problem with the surveillance program because it was imperative in the war on terror.

“If we don’t do it,” Mr. Graham said, “we’re crazy.”

Representative Mike Rogers, Republican of Michigan and the chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, said in a news conference Thursday that the National Security Agency program helped stop a significant domestic terrorist attack in the United States in the last few years. He did not give more information on the possible nature of the attack.

Mr. Rogers (I’m so mad right now, that doesn’t even make me smile a little) show us some proof that this is indeed true.

In another report, Feinstein indicates there have been multiple foiled attacks:

Sen. Dianne Feinstein did not specify how many attempted attacks had been prevented, or the nature of the threats, but the California Democrat said there had been more than one.

OK. So which is it? IS it “one”, or is it “many”, or does this require another interesting “it all depends on what the definition of ‘is’ is” moment?
I noted that Sxby Chambliss says this:

It’s metadata only and it’s what we call minimized,” Mr. Chambliss said. “All of these numbers are basically ferreted out by a computer, but if there’s a number that matches a terrorist number that has been dialed by a U.S. number or dialed from a terrorist to a U.S. number, then that may be flagged. And they may or may not seek a court order to go further on that particular instance. But that’s the only time that this information is ever used in any kind of substantive way.”

Well, except that isn’t the only data you guys are collecting, is it? In a separate story that just broke:

The National Security Agency has obtained direct access to the systems of Google, Facebook, Apple and other US internet giants, according to a top secret document obtained by the Guardian.

The NSA access is part of a previously undisclosed program called PRISM, which allows officials to collect material including search history, the content of emails, file transfers and live chats, the document says.

Oops!

Chambliss, you are a liar. They are NOT just collecting “metadata”… They are going for the whole shebang!

I ask you, how difficult is it for the Government to connect the Verizon (AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint) phone number of customer X to all of that persons ENTIRE internet activities?

Not very.

And this can all be done in secret because idiot politician like Chambliss and Feinstein supported, and continue to support, the Patriot Act, which as we all now see, gave the US Government open and complete access to virtually ALL our online activities! And remember, the agencies are now encouraged to share intel with each other.

How did we go from “They might spy on your library records” to this in just one decade?

The former USSR and Stalin would be proud!

PS. Oh… And just think of what they’ll do next now that their precious PRISM program failed to pick up the Boston Marathon plot!

And it can and will be done in secret, because the Patriot Act gives them the cover to do so!