As discussed on the tea parties page, the teapartiers could have pushed their same aberrant ideology using much more effective and much more civil tactics. Instead, they chose to act like a childish caricature of the far-left: throwing tantrums at public meetings, standing on street corners waving loopy signs, engaging in cheap stunts, playing dress-up games, smearing and lying, and on and on. Teaparty leaders like Glenn Reynolds think mockery is more effective than trying to make an argument, and following the "rules for radicals" of the far-left Saul Alinsky has been a cornerstone of their movement since the start. See several examples at both those links.
Now, some teapartiers are getting their tactics used against them by one of their own stringpullers, FreedomWorks. Don't expect them to learn their lesson and use better tactics, since thinking isn't exactly their forte.
From "Tea Party Finds Power Leads to Policy Splits" by Kate Zernike, nytimes.com/2011/06/29/us/politics/29teaparty.html:
FreedomWorks has paid for robocalls and newspaper and television campaigns against several conservative Republican legislators who oppose the (Pennsylvania bill regarding school vouchers). And Tea Party activists complain that the group has treated them with contempt. At a meeting in April, the president of FreedomWorks, Matt Kibbe, called opponents of the bill “bed-wetters,” prompting an angry confrontation with Tea Party members. The Republican who sponsored the bill, Senator Jeffrey E. Piccola, accused its critics of racism.
“They took far too seriously their own Saul Alinsky training,” Ms. Stefano said. “It’s one thing to go against the left, but this is taking it up against your own family, the people who stood side by side with you. The whole reason the Tea Party came up is that we were tired of people coming in and telling us what to do. Now they’re coming in here and trampling on the very people they take credit for creating.”
Wed, 06/29/2011 - 11:15 · Importance: 4