Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

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Ezra Lb.
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Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Ezra Lb. » Sat Aug 28, 2010 6:49 am

KNOW YOUR ENEMY as that old psychopathic Chinese sage, Chairman Mao said. So in that spirit I am about to head down to the Mall to attend the RESTORING HONOR rally at the Lincoln Memorial where Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin said

"We are 12 hours away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America," Beck said, according to the Post. "It has nothing to do with this city or politics. It has everything to do with God almighty."

"This is the beginning of the great awakening of America ... We must give voice to what God says we must do," he added. "My message to you tonight is stand where He wants you to stand and trust in the Lord. If He tells you to do it, do it. If you can't figure it out, He will. Just do it."


"What else do we have, at the end of the day," beyond faith in God, Palin said, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported.

Indeed, what else?

From the rally FAQ on Beck’s website

Prohibited Items
DO NOT BRING ANY SORT OF WEAPON, INCLUDING A POCKET KNIFE
• Tents/canopies/structures
• Glass containers
• Alcoholic beverages
• Firearms (real or simulated)
• Ammunition
• Explosives or incendiary devices of any kind (including fireworks)
• Knives, blades, or sharp objects of any length
• No staking of grounds
• No digging or trenching
• No attachments to existing landscaping
• No firearms or explosive devices, no open fires

We request that you not bring the following:
• Signs political or otherwise
• Aerosols
• Laser pointers
• Mace and/or pepper spray
• Helium balloons
• Sticks or poles
• Pocket or hand tools, such as “leatherman”
• Packages, large bags, duffle bags, suitcases
• Animals other than service/guide dogs


Know thy audience! No firearms or power tools.

Well if I don't come back tell Mother I'll see her in gloryland. If I do maybe I'll have some stories to tell.
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby FinderDoug » Sat Aug 28, 2010 7:11 am

I see they had to reinforce "No firearms" by listing it twice. So they're aware of the crowd they've created.

I hear Al Sharpton is also in the house. That should make for a fun time.

I have friends who recently moved to Gaithersburg, and they have family in town this weekend, and were going to do museums today. I suggested tomorrow. They asked if I was going. I said, "Not even if I'm allowed to bring a flame thrower." And I see I'm not anyway.

So if I understand Glenn, if God tells me to smite Glenn with a brick, then Glenn won't press charges? (It doesn't expressly prohibit masonry supplies).

And now, let us close with a prayer from the Book of Saint Francis of San Diego:

Listen, we can't really be dumb if we're just following god's orders
After all, he wrote this book here and in the book it says, "He made us all to be just like him"
So, if we're dumb, then god is dumb and maybe even a little ugly on the side

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FrankChurch
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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby FrankChurch » Sat Aug 28, 2010 11:10 am

Ezra, are you going down?

Glenn is being more restrictive than the government he hates so much.

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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Lori Koonce » Sat Aug 28, 2010 11:22 am

Doug

He's not exactly in the same neighborhood, but close enough.

You know for the most part I think Sharpton is an idiot in ministers clothing, but what I heard the AM on NPR had me almost in tears. Sharpton said words to the affect that how can he be honoring King when he seeks to destroy the government than King himself tired to make better.

I am seriously thinking about gathering up all the Webderlanders who want to come with me and starting a commune somewhere in Canada....

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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby FrankChurch » Sat Aug 28, 2010 1:07 pm

Al Sharpton was on Washington Journal this morning.

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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Gwyneth M905 » Sat Aug 28, 2010 10:03 pm

Ezra?
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Ezra Lb.
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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Ezra Lb. » Sun Aug 29, 2010 7:54 am

You're next! You're next!

Actually I had a great time but I what I don't have is time right now to write about it. A busy Sunday looms.

More, later...
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
-Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Moderator » Sun Aug 29, 2010 8:55 am

Ezra Lb. wrote:You're next! You're next!



Isn't that the closing line from Invasion of the Body Snatchers?
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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby FrankChurch » Sun Aug 29, 2010 11:52 am

Anybody know how big the turnout was?

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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Moderator » Sun Aug 29, 2010 11:57 am

Park Service officials have stopped giving crowd counts after previous controversies. But an estimate commissioned by CBS News, using aerial photography, put attendance at between 78,000 and 96,000. ABC News reported more than 100,000, while Fox -- and Beck -- estimated it at above half a million.
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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby FinderDoug » Sun Aug 29, 2010 8:55 pm

while Fox -- and Beck -- estimated it at above half a million.


Well, the counted everyone in, around, near, or who may have passed beneath the mall by metro train. Technically, they were "there".

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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Ezra Lb. » Mon Aug 30, 2010 9:18 am

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0heL2Czeraw

She is…America!

When the first Tea-Party rally was held last summer down at the Mall I couldn’t attend because of work responsibilities so when I heard about Glenn Beck’s RESTORE AMERICA’S HONOR rally I was determined not to miss it.

Why go?

Like most of you I had certain preconceived notions about the Tea-Party, who they are, what they want. Let’s just say I’m mistrustful of second hand opinions or received wisdom. People can surprise you and I don’t like talking about subjects I don’t know anything about.

Who are these people?

Overwhelmingly white. Overwhelmingly middle-class. Overwhelmingly conservatively religious skewing hard towards fundamentalism. Overwhelmingly conservative politically obviously but be aware that there is little or no distinction made between the politics and religion here.

These folks are not Nazis. Sure there’s whiff of the lunatic fringe occasionally but all populist movements feed on resentment and that brings out the frenzied folks in droves. And if you were a news reporter who would you aim the camera at?

I was raised by these people. Most of my family and hometown friends are these people. The South and the Midwest are full of these people. They pay most of the taxes and fight all the wars. If they perceived you in need they would give you the shirt off their back but if you were perceived as an enemy they would sit quietly while you were locked up without a trial. But this gets into the inner contradictions in the movement and more about that later.

The Rally

It was billed as a non-political rally to celebrate “our” faith in god and to honor our country and its veterans. It was almost completely religious in tone. Its program followed the theme of the Christian virtues in the Apostle Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, “Faith, Hope and Charity”. Beck functioned as emcee and host and presenter. He was in full mega-church pastor mode. Interspersed among the keynote speakers were several veterans and sport figures, most of whom did not speak but when introduced walked out and just stood there, embodying the spirit of the virtues I suppose and of course allowing the lesser lights to perhaps absorb some of their mojo.

Beck claimed it was coincidence that the date of the rally fell on the anniversary of MLK’s speech but that’s bullshit because they name-checked MLK all during the rally even playing a prerecorded video about MLK. We were continually invited to consider this rally as an extension of MLK’s vision. Of course that vision seems to have been confined to “letting freedom ring”. Little was said about racial injustice or poverty and nothing at all about the fact that MLK was agitating for more government involvement in social policy, not less.

Mostly though we were admonished to help restore America’s lost honor although we were never told exactly how or when America actually lost its honor. I suppose if you don’t already know the answers to those questions it means you’re not a Tea-Party person. All three “virtues” were represented by either veterans or sports figures, even Charity. Warfare and football as acts of love? (Now that I think about it wasn’t it J G Ballard who named one of his books, “Love and Napalm: Export USA”?)

This production had big bucks behind it. They had a multi-media presentation (video screens, etc) and a PA worthy of Pink Floyd. Ever since the Park Service got into deep shit by having the temerity to point out that there weren’t a million men at the Million Man march they’ve refrained from estimating crowd sizes. You are hearing various estimates but I asked one of the park police and he said he thought about 125 - 150,000. That was about my guess. One of the local news-copter reporters said 80 – 90,000. Beck was claiming half a million but then he would wouldn’t he?

GLENN and SARA

Glenn Beck is Elmer Gantry. A natural performer. Apparently he’s a Mormon but who knows what he actually believes? Or to put it another way, I’m sure he believes what he’s saying while he’s saying it. All good actors do. (NOTE: I said Beck was Elmer Gantry, not that he was Burt Lancaster. Read the book.)

Sarah Palin has problems. She’s an appalling public speaker when she has a prepared speech. Of course that didn’t seem to hurt Bush but Palin really wants to just stand there and beam and when she tries to damp it down and make the text sound off the cuff it grates. At every applause line she would pause and look up as if to cue the crowd that it was time to clap. Her fans take this as a sign of her folksy charm and love her for it. Many pundits see her as the front runner for the 2012 Republican nomination. This scares the Republican establishment shitless. It ought to.

What did we learn from this experience?

Although this movement will do much mischief in the short term and may even elect a few wingnuts here and there, let me tell you why I think it will ultimately fizzle out. It will simply strangle on its own inner contradictions.

First of all, “getting back to god” is not a serious policy proposal. The Tea-Party is the party of grievance and resentment. They can go all day telling you what they’re against. Never mind “restoring our lost honor”. What about the economy? What about the war? The nation must turn back to god. Leaving aside the question of exactly what that means, just ask, how likely is that to happen?

The Tea-Party folks perceive of themselves as being put upon by titanic powers out of their control. I was interested to find that there is in the movement a strong anti-corporate and anti-Wall Street flavor as well as being anti-big government. But the only way to reign in the excesses of the corporations and Wall Street is to monitor and regulate their activities. And who is going to do that besides the government? But they can’t be for regulation because they’re against “big” government. These folks inhabit a strange loop where they undermine the very people who could protect them and let loose the very forces that caused the financial collapse in the first place.

There was a real effort in this Rally to damp down the more frenzied aspects of the movement. The guidelines for participants specifically asked that no posters be brought to the rally! The guidelines also asked three times (!) that no firearms be brought. Signs that say “Obama is a Socialist Muslim Negro” being held by someone with an M16 slung over his shoulder might not look good on television. The young lady in the video sings “I am America!” but she doesn’t mean “I am a part of America”, she means “I am the real America”.

I saw a slight smattering of Hispanics at the rally. Of course they could have been tourists. I saw no African Americans other than the (very) few on stage and ones there as part of news crews. The message says one thing but the reality is, this is an exclusionary movement. Gotta look like us and think like us. For the party to be successful it would have to mainstream and perhaps this rally was an attempt to do that. But what drives and energizes the party is its sense of resentment and victimization. If you damp that down what will you have left?

Finally, it’s easy to sneer at these folks and what they represent. They do live in a fantasy world of a lost Eden when people knew their place under god. They are seriously misguided and pin their hopes on schemers and demagogues. But hey 100,000 middle-aged white folks stood out in a field in the hot sun for three hours listening to speeches. Where were the 100,000 for the Health Care bill? Where are the 100,000 anti-war folks?

It’s a shame we couldn’t have an educated Tea-Party who knew where their real interests are and who organized and acted accordingly. That’s the liberal fantasy world I suppose.
“We must not always talk in the marketplace,” Hester Prynne said, “of what happens to us in the forest.”
-Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Moderator » Mon Aug 30, 2010 9:48 am

It’s a shame we couldn’t have an educated Tea-Party who knew where their real interests are and who organized and acted accordingly. That’s the liberal fantasy world I suppose.


Thank you for the report, Ezra. Fascinating and well composed. This ought to be posted on the Pav, as I believe some non-board regulars might be intrigued by your thoughts.

I find the above quote to be significant. I have never vilified the Tea Party regulars other than to point out that they are being mislead and used, and if they would take the time to read on issues they could certainly have a more...*ahem*...informed opinion. I don't have problems with people who disagree with me, as long as they aren't frothing dittoheads who simply repeat the sound bytes. Cris and I do not see the New York community center in the same way, but hers is an informed opinion, honestly arrived at. We disagree. Too many in the Tea Party believe that a strong assertion of "don't you thinks" and "but how can you disputes" followed by a carefully worded sound byte, are unassailable gospel and they cannot be argued with. It's a carefully honed debating style. "But do you support the destruction of America?" -- of course the only possible response is "no", which they then parade about as if they've won some sort of victory of their opinion over your own.

My issue is with the TP leadership. The hypocrisies you mention are a major part of it. That they don't seem to grasp that they are contradictory or underinformed is another. (Palin's assertion of Dr Laura's First Amendment rights is a prime example. Dr Laura had no issues with the FA, but I would expect that a candidate for the VP slot in a national election would have a better comprehension of what the Amendment actually guarantees. I'm rather demanding that way.

(Further, the FCC dramatically enhanced fines for broadcast obscenties under the Bush Administration -- which comes uncomfortably close to governmental censorship in my book. But no one on the right seems to see the nuance for what it is.)

The leadership -- those people who are put in the position of "understanding" what the masses need, and fighting for it on the masses' behalf -- ought to be held to a standard of comprehension in basic government rights and sociology of this nation. Without that understanding you geth the demands for Constitutional reform that could seriously damage our existing way of life. The 14th Amendment is about a LOT more than simply letting foregin children born here have citizenship, but you would never know it from the rhetoric. It's that hypocrisy I cannot fathom and must take issue with.

Lastly, and this might seem pithy to some of you, I wonder how many of those "good Christians" have, in the past, attacked Mormonism as a cult religion. I personally think it's hunky dory and have several friends who are followers, but have heard enough vilification of their church to understand that "Christians" don't think it's a Christian religion (it is). So is Catholicism, BTW. But I wonder why it is that such arch-conservative fundamentalists feel free to condemn someone else's faith one day, then show up to a rally for God by a practioner of that very same faith. Gabriel is going to have a field day with them at the Pearly Gates.

As I asked in the Pav the other day: "Do ardent Second Amendment agitators support the right of Muslims to own a gun?" Or, in this case, "Would good Christians allow that there are multiple varieties of Christianity and agree to find value in all of them?" (Or any religious belief, frankly. Or lack thereof.)

I understand the anger. I understand that several TP positions are valid. But they seem to want lower taxes, smaller government (except where it impinges upon their own rights and privileges); a strong Constitution (except when it protects people they don't like); God in their schools and government (except when it's not their particular form of God); a return to American values (their values, as they define them, not everyone's); civil rights for white people (and a retrenching of them for people who aren't); and an invocation of the Founding Fathers as a pantheon of modern American gods (as long as we listen to these guys, and not those guys).

Again, thank you for that terrific write-up, Ez. I would repeat that you should post it in the Pav.
- I love to find adventure. All I need is a change of clothes, my Nikon, an open mind and a strong cup of coffee.

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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Chuck Messer » Mon Aug 30, 2010 2:57 pm

Very interesting, Ezra. Thanks for doing this. It's nice to get a non-sensationalist, fog-free point of view on the rally.

The Nativist American party, aka, the Know-Nothings fell apart for the same reasons. There was no real unifying political principal, only fear and resentment of German and Irish Catholic immigrants coming to the USA at the time. It was when they were obliged to make some sort of statement on the institution of slavery that the party was shown to be just a bunch of scared, pissed-off people with nothing really to say, that the part disintegrated. At it's height, they did get Millard Fillmore elected president.

Chuck Messer, whose ancestors were probably among those villified by the Nativists when they came here in the 19th century.
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Re: Gone to Glenn & Sarah's for lunch

Postby Gwyneth M905 » Mon Aug 30, 2010 8:00 pm

Barber wrote:[snips]

As I asked in the Pav the other day: "Do ardent Second Amendment agitators support the right of Muslims to own a gun?" Or, in this case, "Would good Christians allow that there are multiple varieties of Christianity and agree to find value in all of them?" (Or any religious belief, frankly. Or lack thereof.).


ACT-tu-ally Steve...sit down for a second. If you're drinking something put it down. Unless it's alcohol. You may need a slug after reading this:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/05/05/bloomberg-terror-gap-argu_n_564733.html

Now, as I've pointed out on my FB page, only 6% of all terrorist acts committed 1980-2005 according to the FBI database were committed by Islamic groups. Muslims are not responsible for the majority of terrorist acts in the United States (according to the FBI).

I read a quote from an NRA member who stated that "nobody knows how you get on this terrorist list, or how you get off it". This quote about the terrorist list is true. So, yes, the NRA is standing up for terrorists to bear arms, they just can get tortured, detained without habeas corpus, and not Mirandized.
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