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Last year's corporately funded town hall riots a huge factor in toxic political climate.

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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 06:36 PM
Original message
Last year's corporately funded town hall riots a huge factor in toxic political climate.
The kind of climate in which the right wing radio just keeps on pumping words that are meant to anger the rest of us. The atmosphere is just as poisonous now as it was before the Arizona shooting. An Arizona tea party co-founder even blamed Gabrielle Gifford for getting shot because she did not have security.

The same ones who steadily built up this atmosphere of anger, one that is filled with contempt for the left....are now playing the victims. They actually have the nerve to paint themselves as victims of the left.

There should be a lot of looking back to 2009 and remembering how the town hall riot atmosphere began last year. Democrats could not have a peaceful gathering to answer questions because the corporately funded right wing groups bused in groups of people to purposely disrupt.

They were even given talking points, how to stand up and shout, how to keep the politician from getting any points across.

From 2009...time to remember some of those events which set the stage for violence.

Right-Wing Harassment Strategy Against Dems Detailed In Memo: Yell, Stand Up And Shout Out, Rattle Him

It was as deliberate as it could be. Planned disruption meant to harass and anger.

A leaked memo from Bob MacGuffie, a volunteer with the FreedomWorks website Tea Party Patriots, details how members should be infiltrating town halls and harassing Democratic members of Congress:


Tea Bagger Memo

It was called Rocking the Town Halls..Best Practices.

The memo read like this.

We here in Fairfield County, CT, conducted an action at Congressman Jim Hine's town hall meeting in May 2009. We believe there are some best practices which emerged from our event and our experience, which could be useful to activists in just about any district where their Congressperson has supported the socialist agenda of the Democrat leadership in Washington.

Artificially Inflate Your Numbers: Spread out in the hall and try to be in the front half. The objective is to put the Rep on the defensive with your questions and follow-up. The Rep should be made to feel that a majority, and if not, a significant portion of at least the audience, opposes the socialist agenda of Washington.

Be Disruptive Early And Often: You need to rock-the-boat early in the Reps presentation, Watch for an opportunity to yell out and challenge the Reps statements early.


Watch for an opportunity to yell out? Intentional baiting of Democratic politicians.

Try To Rattle Him, Not Have An Intelligent Debate: The goal is to rattle him, get him off his prepared script and agenda. If he says something outrageous, stand up and shout out and sit right back down. Look for these opportunities before he even takes questions.


Another example of this intention to purposefully disrupt and anger.

Town halls gone wild

Screaming constituents, protesters dragged out by the cops, congressmen fearful for their safety welcome to the new town-hall-style meeting, the once-staid forum that is rapidly turning into a house of horrors for members of Congress.

On the eve of the August recess, members are reporting meetings that have gone terribly awry, marked by angry, sign-carrying mobs and disruptive behavior. In at least one case, a congressman has stopped holding town hall events because the situation has spiraled so far out of control.

I had felt they would be pointless, Rep. Tim Bishop (D-N.Y.) told POLITICO, referring to his recent decision to temporarily suspend the events in his Long Island district. There is no point in meeting with my constituents and listen to them and have them listen to you if what is basically an unruly mob prevents you from having an intelligent conversation.


Building an atmosphere of anger and hate and fear.

More from Talking Points memo about who funded all this stuff.

FreedomWorks' Long History Of Teabagging

Who first proposed holding tea party events? When did major conservative organizations get involved? And how much support have they gained along the way?

The answer to the first question is "FreedomWorks." The answer to the second question is "right from the start." And the answer to the last question is "less than you'd expect, given the months of hype."

The first tea-partyish events occurred in February in Seattle, WA, Denver, CO, and Mesa, AZ around the time President Obama signed the stimulus bill into law, but they didn't have an explicitly tea-based theme. If they had a theme of any kind it was "pork" and government waste. Conservative blogger Michelle Malkin wrote a post about the Seattle protest called "From the Boston Tea Party to your neighborhood pork protest." And in Denver, protesters shouted, "No more pork!" By and large, though, the events lacked a unifying issue.

That all changed on February 19, when CNBC commentator Rick Santelli erupted in anger on the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade, and proposed a "Chicago Tea Party" for traders to protest the government's plan to provide mortgage assistance to distressed homeowners.
The idea took hold and on February 27, a handful of cities across the country hosted gatherings that involved genuine tea (or at least the use of the word "tea"). One of those tea parties occurred from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. on Friday February 27, in Tampa, FL, organized according to the website Tampa Bay Online, by "John Hendricks, a Tampa-based consultant."


There was a lot more from Think Progress blog in April of last year about the funding.

RADICAL RIGHT Tea Baggers Against Obama

There are many links inserted at the website within this one paragraph.

SPONTANEOUS UPRISING?:

Although spokesmen of the tea parties have made significant efforts to portray the protests as organic uprisings of like-minded citizens, corporate lobbyists have engineered much of the planning and execution of the events. The corporate front group FreedomWorks, run by lobbyist and former House Majority Leader Dick Armey (R-TX), had its staff organize the very first tea party on Feb. 27 in Tampa, FL, following CNBC's Rick Santelli's call for a Boston Tea Party-like upheaval to protest Obama's housing plan. Soon after, FreedomWorks began planning nationwide tea party protests and had their operatives help coordinate logistics, call conservative activists, and provide activists with everything from organizing tips to sign ideas. Americans for Prosperity, a front group run by corporate lobbyist Tim Phillips (a former partner to Ralph Reed), assisted with the effort, drawing upon its extensive field staff to plan events, write press releases, and distribute talking points for people on the ground. Newt Gingrich's American Solutions for Winning the Future -- which is funded by polluters and helped orchestrated the "Drill Here, Drill Now" campaign last summer -- has also signed on to support the protests.


Santelli mentioned again. I don't see a single left wing group listed among the funders.

And Fox News to the rescue, helping them publicize their attempts to raise anger at the town halls, to purposefully disrupt.

FOX NEWS MEGAPHONE: Both Fox News and Fox Business have run back-to-back promotions explicitly encouraging viewers to attend the tea parties. The Fox broadcasts are in turn being used by the tea party organizers to promote their protests. Promising "fair and balanced" coverage, Fox News hosts such as Glenn Beck, Neil Cavuto, and Sean Hannity are all planning to broadcast live from the events. The segments for the tea parties are replete with enthusiastic endorsements, like the recent announcement of one Fox pundit that it's "time to party like it's 1773!" In their drive to promote the protests, Fox is fueling paranoia by making unsubstantiated, conspiratorial claims that the Obama administration may send "spies" to the tea parties. Another claim Fox asserts to justify its nonstop promotional coverage is that the network provided similar coverage for the Million Man March in 1995. However, Fox News didn't launch until 1996.


None of these articles mention Florida's new governor, Rick Scott. So I will. He helped fund these riots at the town halls in his role as head of Conservatives for Patients' Rights.

If youre wondering who is primarily responsible for organizing the barbaric efforts to sabotage the Democratic town halls across the nation, wonder no longer. The mans name is Rick Scott, and he is in charge of the Web site Conservatives For Patients Rights. He is a multimillionaire ex-hospital CEO whose company was charged with the largest case of financial fraud committed against the government in United States history.


The political atmosphere this year was not accidental. It's been planned for a long time. It especially came to light at the town halls last year.

They can try to shift the blame for the atmosphere, but it is not going to work in the long run. Years ago this wing of the Republican party, I guess you would call it the extremist wing.....said in writing that they would maintain a constant barrage of criticism against the left. It became their goal.

"We will maintain a constant barrage of criticism against the Left. We will attack the very legitimacy of the Left. We will not give them a moment's rest. We will endeavor to prove that the Left does not deserve to hold sway over the heart and mind of a single American. We will offer constant reminders that there is an alternative, there is a better way. When people have had enough of the sickness and decay of todays American culture, they will be embraced by and welcomed into the New Traditionalist movement. The rejection of the existing society by the people will thus be accomplished by pushing them and pulling them simultaneously."

"We must create a countervailing force that is just as adept as the Left at intimidating people and institutions that are used as tools of left-wing activism but are not ideologically committed, such as Hollywood celebrities, multinational corporations, and university administrators. We must be feared, so that they will think twice before opening their mouths..."


They have succeeded in many ways. Our Democratic leaders are fearful, mostly because they don't want to lose. Since our side doesn't have the vast noise machine their side does....they cower rather than speak out strongly against the hate-filled rhetoric.

As Florida's Allen West said recently....he urged his supporters to make "the fellow afraid to come out of his house".

West encouraged his supporters to use violence in suppressing the votes of opponents, saying, "You've got to make the fellow scared to come out of his house."

PFAW's ten scariest Republicans


The atmosphere that is so ugly was not created by the left. It was deliberately and on purpose created by those on the right. And it is time our side took stronger stands against it.
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bluethruandthru Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 06:51 PM
Response to Original message
1. Well the media certainly fell for it.
We've all known that the right (I don't differentiate between teabaggers and other R's) is well organized and single minded. We've known that they get their marching orders and then carry them out with no questions asked.

The media totally fell for all their crap. The tea party movement is minuscule but watching TV, reading the papers or magazines, you'd think that half the country was in lockstep with them. This group was created by dick armey and others the media unwittingly (or maybe not) gave them legitimacy in the minds of most Americans.
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RagAss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 06:54 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. The media didn't fall for anything....They facilitated it !!
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bluethruandthru Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:03 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. Yeah, I think you're right. Makes the whole situation seem
even more hopeless.

The statement that makes me laugh the most that I hear from right wing acquaintances is "Liberal Media". HA!
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BobbyBoring Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 06:52 PM
Response to Reply #2
35. Yes
The main stream left leaning libural media strikes again! What a fucking crock~
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Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:31 PM
Response to Reply #1
10. No, the MSM was part of the deception.
The MSM MANUFACTURES reality, it does not report it.
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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 10:10 AM
Response to Reply #10
16. +1
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Hannah Bell Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 06:56 PM
Response to Original message
3. kr
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gratuitous Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:06 PM
Response to Original message
5. Oh sure, you libruls!
Use the Tea Baggers' and their bankrollers' own words and actions against them. Is there no depth to which you will not sink? Now that some lunatic has acted out in conformance with their rhetoric, it's time to say "Both sides are to blame," cluck over the victims, and vow that we'll all do better to tone down the rhetoric, especially you bloodthirsty, traitorous libruls!

Geez, follow the script, cancha?
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theoldman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:13 PM
Response to Original message
6. If you read about the history of Germany you will understand the present situation in the US
I am not saying that Palin is like Hitler or that the Republicans are Nazis. I will say however that there is a similarity on how Hitler got in power.
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 11:32 PM
Response to Reply #6
11. I would like to get this book sometime...
Edited on Mon Jan-17-11 11:43 PM by madfloridian
We have posted about it here before. If I ordered it online would probably have the FBI after me. Odd how stuff like that happens nowadays.

""What no one seemed to notice. . . was the ever widening gap. . .between the government and the people. . . And it became always wider. . . the whole process of its coming into being, was above all diverting, it provided an excuse not to think for people who did not want to think anyway . . . (it) gave us some dreadful, fundamental things to think about . . .and kept us so busy with continuous changes and 'crises' and so fascinated . . . by the machinations of the 'national enemies,' without and within, that we had no time to think about these dreadful things that were growing, little by little, all around us. . .

Each step was so small, so inconsequential, so well explained or, on occasion, 'regretted,' that unless one understood what the whole thing was in principle, what all these 'little measures'. . . must some day lead to, one no more saw it developing from day to day than a farmer in his field sees the corn growing. . . .Each act. . . is worse than the last, but only a little worse. You wait for the next and the next. You wait for one great shocking occasion, thinking that others, when such a shock comes, will join you in resisting somehow.

You don't want to act, or even talk, alone. . . you don't want to 'go out of your way to make trouble.' . . .But the one great shocking occasion, when tens or hundreds or thousands will join with you, never comes. That's the difficulty. The forms are all there, all untouched, all reassuring, the houses, the shops, the jobs, the mealtimes, the visits, the concerts, the cinema, the holidays. But the spirit, which you never noticed because you made the lifelong mistake of identifying it with the forms, is changed. Now you live in a world of hate and fear, and the people who hate and fear do not even know it themselves, when everyone is transformed, no one is transformed. . . .You have accepted things you would not have accepted five years ago, a year ago, things your father. . . could never have imagined.":

From Milton Mayer, They Thought They Were Free, The Germans, 1938-45 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1955)"

I have some more excerpts somewhere on this computer.

Here's a little more, this part is heartbreakingly powerful.

"Suddenly it all comes down, all at once. You see what you are, what you have done, or, more accurately, what you havent done (for that was all that was required of most of us: that we did nothing). You remember those early meetings of your department in the university when, if one had stood, others would have stood, perhaps, but no one stood. A small matter, a matter of hiring this man or that, and you hired this one rather than that. You remember everything now, and your heart breaks. Too late. You are compromised beyond repair." (171)"

http://www.quaker.org/quest/issue-8-milton-mayer-2.htm
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catzies Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 01:22 PM
Response to Reply #11
25. Thanks for reposting that, I first learned of that right here at DU during the Dark Ages (2001-2009)
I'm sure I have archived threads referencing it on my hard drive at home.
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quaker bill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:15 PM
Response to Original message
7. Yes, but it started
with the "brooks brothers riot" in Miami Dade during the 2000 recount. Once they saw that faux prime time aggressive stupidity works, all bets have been off.
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BobbyBoring Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 06:57 PM
Response to Reply #7
36. That was
Our equivalent of The Beer Hall Putsch. And 9/11 was our Reich stag Fire. The parallels between our "Empire", the 3rd Reich and Rome should be a screaming robot. Danger Will Robinson, Danger
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molly77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-19-11 12:17 AM
Response to Reply #7
40. Yep, The Brooks Brothers suits coup
It is amazing how that was pulled off. Tom Hanks said if the American people didn't riot in the streets in 2000, they will accept anything. I feel differently. Think with a little help from WikiLeaks, people aren't going to sit around with our govt wanting to undercut social security and see that corporations and banks aren't paying taxes.We are in two wars that we have really never been given a reason for being in.This year will probably be bumpy.
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msongs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 07:20 PM
Response to Original message
8. we are supposed to be bipartisan and reach across the aisle according to one famous dem nt
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 08:27 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. Ah yes. That is true.
I never want to hear the word "bipartisan" again. I did not work and donate to get folks elected so they could be "bipartisan".
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Bluenorthwest Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 07:03 AM
Response to Reply #8
13. Yes, but that guy sat in silence through the whole town hall thing
He never spoke out, never said a word, never made clear his intentions with 'reform', seemed to be out of the loop, the whole time. Someone shot at DeFazio's office, Obama chided DeFazio, never said a thing about the crazed crowds he had to meet, all on his own.
The executive branch left those Representatives dangling in the breeze, without facts, without assistance, and the Right Wing hammered them. I recall Obama going to Hawaii during that time. I remember thinking he had lost his voice and betrayed us all. He was in hiding during the most intense part of the debate.
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leftstreet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-17-11 11:35 PM
Response to Original message
12. Interesting there weren't any Wall Street Bailout Town Halls
Only when it came time for something that benefits the serfs...
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malaise Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 07:12 AM
Response to Original message
14. And M$Greedia loved it
They ran it down the way drug addicts seek their fix for both profits and because they too oppose many of Obama's policies.

They fooled no one.
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newtothegame Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 09:18 AM
Response to Original message
15. No matter how disruptive the town halls were, we're kidding ourselves...
if we assume they were ever intended for 'discussion' or education on reform. Hell, most congress critters themselves didn't even read the reform bill. Do u think they really wanted us to? :shrug:
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defendandprotect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 10:47 AM
Response to Reply #15
19. Exactly -- the T-BAGGERS were created to inject a new higher level of violence into
the political arena --

the pattern is always the same --

and trust everyone here is familiar with the rise of the Third Reich --

'cause imo that's what we're watching -- the rise of the Fourth Reich -- !!

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defendandprotect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 10:43 AM
Response to Original message
17. This has been planned since the end days of the Third Reich .....
This is the handiwork of the far right wing which can only succeed based on violence --

well -- okay, stolen elections and lies. And wealth.

Reminiscent of the rise of the Third Reich, funded by our wealthy elites here in America

and around the world. Didn't succeed entirely? Simply try again -- but this time take

down everyone at the same time.

Thanks, Mad -- for the constant education!


:)
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defendandprotect Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 10:45 AM
Response to Original message
18. And did we fail to notice, absolutely no response by our government to the Town Hall violence ...!!!
Even when they were spitting on our elected officials!!

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Raine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 07:34 PM
Response to Reply #18
37. Exactly, as usual our side did absolutely ... NOTHING! nt
:grr:
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tooeyeten Donating Member (441 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 11:09 AM
Response to Original message
20. without hate
what would they be?
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wiggs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 11:13 AM
Response to Original message
21. wouldn't replaying some of the verbally abusive videos along with the
RW harassment video have been on point and pertinent during some of the discussion this last week? In a normal world, wouldn't some of this stuff been on Meet the Press or CNN? At the very least, we should have seen it on MSNBC...but didn't.
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molly77 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-19-11 12:20 AM
Response to Reply #21
41. As Amy Goodman says, "What would be the difference if we had state media?"
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 12:45 PM
Response to Original message
22. An article and video about one of the worst riots in Tampa. Kathy Castor.
http://gawker.com/5332163/this-is-what-the-great-americ...

"Reports the St. Petersburg Times:

"Tyranny! Tyranny! Tyranny!" dozens of people shouted as U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Tampa, struggled to talk about health insurance reforms under consideration in Washington, D.C.

"There is more consensus than there is disagreement when you get right down to it,'' Castor offered, immediately drowned out by groans and boos.

She pressed on, mostly unheard among screams from the audience estimated by Tampa police to be about 1,500.

"Tell the truth! Tell the truth!" "Read the bill!" "Forty-million illegals! Forty million illegals!"

So who were these unhinged animals? Where did they come from? Who inspired them? We'll give you one guess.

Hundreds of vocal critics turned out, many of them saying they had been spurred on through the Tampa 912 activist group promoted by conservative radio and television personality Glenn Beck. Others had received e-mails from the Hillsborough Republican Party that urged people to speak out against the plan and offered talking points"
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 12:48 PM
Response to Original message
23. Who was the shithead who came up with the town hall idea in the first place?
Those things seemed designed to hinder the legislative process.
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madrchsod Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 01:02 PM
Response to Original message
24. let`s not forget the "riot" during the recount in florida.
that was an organized intimidation of the electoral process.
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 01:40 PM
Response to Reply #24
28. Here's the picture so we never forget.
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hapkidogal Donating Member (32 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 01:26 PM
Response to Original message
26. Off topic but you'll want to read this
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somone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 01:29 PM
Response to Original message
27. Recommended
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hootinholler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 02:27 PM
Response to Original message
29. Threads like this
Make me nostalgic for DU during the darkness.

It's so hard to settle for twilight after that.

On a lighter note, what should we expect when dealing with a Dick Armey?

-Hoot
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madfloridian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #29
30. I know what you mean.
It was a haven here during the Iraq war build-up. We could not believe our country was going to invade another country on lies. Now seems like we so easily accept things that once we would have gotten very upset about.
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patrice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 02:36 PM
Response to Original message
31. K&R
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Kurovski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 03:50 PM
Response to Original message
32. K&R. (nt)
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russspeakeasy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 04:13 PM
Response to Original message
33. madfloridian...thanks for your work...great post.
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barbtries Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 05:58 PM
Response to Original message
34. thank you madfloridian
connecting the dots.
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Jefferson23 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 11:10 PM
Response to Original message
38. K&R, excellent . n/t
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Dappleganger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-18-11 11:14 PM
Response to Original message
39. Happy to K&R--they have declared war on our democracy!
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