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Teabaggers' dirty tricks at town halls. CongressCritters need to COUNT 'baggers & NOT give in.

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UTUSN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 10:43 AM
Original message
Teabaggers' dirty tricks at town halls. CongressCritters need to COUNT 'baggers & NOT give in.
My region encompasses three congressional districts, within a large Democratic third of a Rethug state. So two of the congresscritters are Dems, but of the weasley, chicken variety, and the third is a semi-Blue Dog, but also weasley-chicken. How the three end up with the same descriptive is how they respond to the local radio talkshow wingnuts: The two Dems run and hide from tough venues, while the Blue Dog appears weekly on the phone with the wingnuts and submits to being slapped around by them.

So the two wingnuts have been rabid in the Teabagging and during the recess hounded the critters to hold supposed "town halls." Two weeks after the initial, national town hall furor, the two Dems scheduled theirs, one in September(!1) and the other, immediately THAT DAY(!1)--by phone. O.K., fine. The Blue Dog scheduled one, but he is the tool for the 'baggers, so he won't catch that much flak, but I expect that he will "go back" to D.C. having "listened" and will use this as an excuse to vote against whatever.

So the Teabaggers did their Brooks Brothers thing and HELD THEIR OWN, but got the media to report that "The two most important invited guests----Critter 1 and Critter 2---DID NOT SHOW UP!1" And the t.v. camera panned from what looked like a small and silent crowd, or rather GROUP, to the empty dais with two empty chairs and two HUMONGOUS, professionally printed "place cards" with the names of the two critters on them.

I called the t.v. newsroom and the newspaper to complain about how the so-called reporting bought into the Teabaggers' line, how this event was THEIR event, purposely set up to embarrass the Critters, how ANYBODY can announce out of the blue that they are having a "town hall" then announce to the media that so-and-so/whoever "was too chicken to show up." The newspaper person was totally a 'bagger and tried to talk over me and said she had ASKED some of the attendees whether they were "members" of the Teabaggers (are there official "members"?), and yelled at me, "Are you saying people DON'T HAVE A RIGHT TO MEET AND SPEAK THEIR MINDS?!1"

What is galling is that Critters 1&2 really are so cowardly that they don't even DEFEND themselves.

****************

Now, ISSUES AND QUESTIONS FOR THE CONGRESS CRITTERS, that they shouldn't use EXCUSES:

1) Exactly HOW MANY of the disruptors were at the meetings they personally held? What percentage were the attendees ACTUALLY MEMBERS of the DISTRICT's voters, broken down by protesting-attendees and supporting-attendees?

2) Actually, who knows whether the disruptors ARE ACTUALLY MEMBERS of the District?!1

3) Media needs to ask, NOT JUST RANDOM ATTENDEES, but the ORGANIZERS of the 'baggers' events, WHO actually made the arrangements, rented (or borrowed the free library space)---Are YOU a 'bagger? Who PAID for the printed place cards and other expenses?


The bottom line is that cowardly Congress Critters should not be allowed to "go back to D.C. having LISTENED to my constituents and will vote AGAINST this or that" without providing a NUMBERED COUNT of the actual dissenting voters IN THEIR DISTRICT.


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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 11:04 AM
Response to Original message
1. Absolutely on the right track here. The first questions out of our mouths should be about how input
is evaluated. On the phone, in email, in person, by letter, we should begin by striving to find out IF and HOW they use the feedback and opinions and lobbying that comes at them:

Is astroturf weighed more or less than individual communications?
How do you identify astroturf? What about lying? - which is extremely common
Who gets a tally-mark on some scratch paper and who gets their input transcribed word for word?
How is all of this input classified? Who defines the classifications?
How long is it kept?
How is it reported into your organization?
What is it used for?

We have another HUGE battle coming at us about Dirty Coal. We MUST get a grip on what is happening to all of the citizen input that we are working to build.

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zbdent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 11:16 AM
Response to Original message
2. I remember when George W. Bush came to Richfield, Ohio ... one of the RWers attending
said that all of the protesters were bussed in ... (hmm ... must have been that there were some non-whites there ... apparently, the RWer didn't know that Richfield also has blacks in residence ...)

I just had to wonder ... how many of the attending RWers who were carefully screened were actually from Richfield? I'm pretty sure the company which was hosting the event (right on the border, barely within Richfield) wasn't comprised entirely of people who lived in Richfield ... and that there were plenty of "out-of-towners" (non-Richfield residents) who were in the crowd.

Oh, btw ... attendees' parking for the event was limited to about a mile or so away, so the attendees were actually bussed in using a shuttle bus, so ... weren't the RWers bussed in, too?
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UTUSN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Aug-23-09 12:13 PM
Response to Original message
3. My Letter to the Editor::
Edited on Sun Aug-23-09 12:14 PM by UTUSN
The newspaper editorialized on Sunday August 23 that our local Congressmen must participate in the health care town halls because frank, honest discussions are necessary. Fine.

But who gets to define frank and honest discussions? The editorial itself is sprinkled with Right Wing phrases: socialized health care ... countrys founders (channeled this or that) ... public forum held Tuesday, neither (Congressman) attended ...

So the day of that public forum, the radio screamers scoffingly informed that both congressmen had scheduled town halls, one for September, the other for the same day as (City), by teleconference.

Yet, both t.v. and your sister newspaper reported with the spin that "the two invited guests didnt attend" the (City) town hall. Anybody (I) can claim to be having a town hall and that anybody who didnt go was too chicken to attend.

Probably all three Congressmen will go back to D.C. claiming to have heard and listened to their constituents and will be so intimidated by the screamers that they will be wallflowers or outright against the health care plan.

Well, here are some questions news reporters should be asking:

1) What is the actual number of each town halls attendees, how many for and against, and what percentage of the Districts voters?

2) Who organized this public forum, or any other?

3) Not just random attendees, but the organizers: What organized political groups do you belong to? Same thing with the supporters.

4) Are you (the screamers) VOTERS, residents, in the Congressional District of whatever town hall?

5) Who PAID for the professionally printed place cards and other expenses for the (City) public forum?

6) Why did the one Medicare recipient interviewed say to media that she is afraid of the government running health care? She LIKES Medicare, doesn't she?
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