The Tea Party Patriot Movement (TPPM) is getting a lot of
Big Press (corporate media) these days. They are portrayed by Big Press -- and
supporters -- as an innovative revolutionary, grassroots inspired movement.
It�s the �mad as hell and not going to take it anymore� movement that
spontaneously appeared out of nowhere. On the surface, that appears to be the
�Join the First
Brigade and Fight for Liberty!� say the revolutionaries at TPPM. It�s the �Regular
Folks United� versus a federal, state and local government machine out of
control. Worse, they both say, the Judeo-Christian ethos and the Western
Civilization Tradition is being overrun by illegal immigrants, gays, lesbians,
multiculturalism, immoral behavior, welfare, taxes, abortion, socialism,
communism, liberalism, religious fundamentalism, the Chinese, the Russians, and
on and on.
We�ve heard all of this before, of course, particularly in
the run up to and throughout Ronald Reagan�s presidency. There�s not much that
separates the core missions of 2010�s TPPM and the 1980s� Moral Majority.
But the demographics of the USA have changed (predicted by
scientist�s decades ago). Many Americans have married into other cultures. Many
of America�s cities, states and localities are nearly bankrupt and offloading
workers. US economic and diplomatic power is now on the decline. It was not
capable of negotiating an agreement on Iran�s nuclear fuel cycle (Turkey and
Brasil did that in May 2010) and Israel continues to mow down Palestinian
communities as it expands its territory in spite of the USA�s protestations.
The support Obama once enjoyed globally has waned as he has adopted much of the
prior administration�s national security policies and programs.
The world�s economy is not stable and unemployment in the
USA/Europe is far higher than official statistics. Americans decry illegal
immigration and green card workers but White Americans are not likely to be
found in great numbers picking fruit in California or potatoes in Maine.
Further, all signs point to an America that increasingly has to make its point
via the barrel of a gun or an Unmanned Arial Vehicle Hellfire missile rather
than conversation, debate and negotiation.
In every respect, it is a volatile time around the globe and
uncertainty is the norm in 2010.
Into this boiling stew, as history shows, comes right-wing
politics. Call it what you will: neoconservatism, nationalist/internationalist
conservatism, fascism with a human face, dictatorial capitalism, etc. It is
unsettled times like these in which TPPM and FW appear by design. It is not
hard to fan the flames of ignorance and blame in a population accustomed to
supremacy and only a few paychecks from barbarism. Even as US corporations
prosper in other countries and many Americans face bankruptcy, and as the
infrastructure crumbles and the US spends trillions on war and national
security, TPPM and FW proclaim, �It�s morning in America!�
Who is behind the
TPPM? Dick Armey, the 22-hour man
(FW) is a 501(c4) non-profit that sponsors/funds TPPM. Its stated goal is to
promote the economic well being of American consumers. Matt Kibbie is president
of FW and a former employee of Lee Atwater of the Republican National
Committee. Former Congressman Dick Army is the chairman of FW and for 22 hours
a week consulting throughout the year makes $300,000 (US). He also makes
$250,000 from other related organizations. All the data is available on FW�s
IRS Form 990. Not bad money to make in the fight for liberty. Steve Forbes of
Forbes Magazine is on FW�s Board of Directors as well.
Armey is also a senior advisor to the Center for Global Economic Growth (CGEG),
another FW entity which �working through
FreedomWorks, hosts free market grassroots training seminars for this elite
group. The leaders are specifically instructed on the necessary tactics
involved in grassroots issue advocacy and also on how to effectively organize
and lead a cohesive effort on behalf of a certain issue -- which empowers the
free market missionaries to truly put ideas into action.� Matt Kibbie is on
the staff of the Center for Global Economic Growth.
Other senior advisors for CGEG include Paolo Casaccia of Basinco Holdings
S.A.H. (Luxembourg); Matthias Kummer (Switzerland); Frank Sands, chairman, Sands Capital Management; and David Shaw, Sabrelance
Corp. Partners Ltd (UK).
It is worth noting some of the business interests of Basinco
Holdings SAH. �The company's principal
activity is the management of real estate and property development operations
on prestigious locations on the French Riviera. Through its affiliated
companies, which include Immoforce Sarl, Societe Autoriviera, Societe
Eze-Aighetta and Societe Les Pins d'Alep, the company has full ownership of
important real estate properties in the south of France and in Monaco.�
Another senior advisor to CGEG is Beverly Danielson. Her board
listing cites the Institute for World Politics (IWP). IWP�s education
philosophy, in part, is this: � . . . the
Institute's curriculum is based on recognition of the necessity for education
in natural law -- deriving from the Western, Greco-Roman, Judeo-Christian moral
tradition.� IWP has many ties to the American Enterprise Institute.
Danielson also appears on a board of director�s list for the
Center (CRC). CRC is a research center that, according to its IRS Form
990, monitors public interest and advocacy groups and labor organizations.
In short, it is a conservative-funded watchdog group. Terrance Scanlon runs
CRC. He is a former Reagan-era appointee and was the former vice president for
corporate relations at The Heritage Foundation. Edwin Meese, former attorney
general of the USA under Reagan, is listed as a member of CRC�s board.
I�m one of the
And what about that Regular Folks United (RFU) listed on
runs the show at RFU. According to Open Secrets, Roman held these positions at
the Department of Education during the administration of George W. Bush: former
chief of staff, Center for Faith-Based and Community Initiatives; director of
School Choice; and senior advisor on Family Educational Rights, Office of
Innovation and Improvement. She received her bachelor�s degree from the
University of Michigan and her master�s from Central Michigan University.
Roman hardly qualifies as a �regular.� In fact, many of
these groups have operating budgets in the millions of dollars.
In the end, it�s the same standard template for both
conservatives/liberals and Republicans/Democrats out of power. Create/join a
non-profit, maybe create another non-profit. Create ideological and
organization boxes within boxes. Get the old school and new school ideologues
to join your non-profit board. Get some senators and congressmen to join your
board. Make sure to solicit the wealthy for funds. .Hold some conferences,
publish some white papers and get the Big Press thinking it�s a �new thing� in
America. Stir up the masses, have them join your group (give �em a hat for
their donation) and get them to argue on your behalf. And then watch the
It�s a rerun worth avoiding.
John Stanton is a Virginia-based writer specializing
in national security matters. Reach him at email@example.com.