- Internet-based group committed to exposing the Tea Party as a racist, violent entity
- Supports the anti-capitalist Occupy Wall Street movement
Established in late 2012 to defame and discredit the conservative Tea Party movement which had begun in 2009, Americans Against the Tea Party (AATP) is an Internet-based group “committed to exposing the Tea Party’s lies, violence, racism, ignorance, intolerance, bigotry, and corporatist fascist efforts to subvert our democratic process.” As part of that effort, AATP organizes to “defeat Tea Party/GOP candidates on [electoral] ballots everywhere.” The AATP website highlights the late Keynesian economist John Kenneth Galbraith’s assertion that “the modern conservative is engaged in one of man’s oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness.”
AATP avidly supports the anti-capitalist Occupy Wall Street movement and its crusade on behalf of “The 99%.” “The American People should come first in terms of policy and legislation,” says AATP, “especially the young, elderly, weak, sick, vulnerable, marginalized, and exploited.” Toward that end, the organization calls for greater “income equality and closing the gap between ultra-rich and poor.” “We believe in a strong social safety net,” AATP expands, “and oppose any cuts to social programs, or education—but rather, we wish to see them expanded and funded fully—BEFORE tax cuts are given to the wealthy and corporations.” (Emphasis in original.)
Explicitly rejecting “the idea of Trickle-Down and Austrian economics,” AATP calls for “all tax breaks for the ultra-rich to expire,” while demanding an end to “all government subsidies to corporations raking in record profits.”
Maintaining also that “corporations are not people,” AATP seeks to take “money out of politics.” The organization abjures the 2010 Citizens United Supreme Court decision which nullified—on grounds that the First Amendment prohibits Congress from censoring any entity’s right to engage in, or to fund, political speech—a federal regulation barring corporations and unions from paying for political ads made independently of candidate campaigns.
AATP routinely disparages Tea Party members and supporters as “Tea-Baggers” whose “hatred, division, virulent, unpredictable anger, violent threats and posturing … present a real danger to the lives of President Obama, his family, his administration, Congressional Democrats, and liberals and progressives of all stripes.” The group further depicts Tea Partiers as anti-intellectuals, to whom “education is anathema … since facts have no bearing at all on their decisions or claims.”
On a daily basis, AATP disingenuously distorts conservative messages regarding various policies and portrays them as expressions of bigotry, elitism, and heartlessness. Consider, for example, how AATP in March 2014 interpreted Fox News economic journalist Stuart Varney’s observation that lawmakers in some U.S. states had been exploiting a legal “loophole” which stipulated that any resident who received even $1 of government assistance for his home heating oil expenses, was also eligible to receive the maximum allowable amount of food stamps. “This almost entirely negates the [budget] cuts that Congress imposed,” said Varney, adding: “It shows you, once you’ve got a program, you can never get rid of it and it’s very difficult to cut.” But by AATP’s telling, Varney’s comments conveyed his “insensitivity toward people living in less fortunate circumstances”; revealed his preference for “abolishing the food stamp program altogether; and exposed him as someone who believed that “rather than digging deeper to the root of the problem and finding ways to help low-income families eat, it would be much easier to just let them die.”
AATP similarly distorted conservative political analyst Bill Kristol’s October 2013 assertion that the partial government shutdown—which caused many thousands of non-essential federal workers to be laid off (with full retroactive pay) for 15 days that month—was “not going to be the end of the world,” and that “even if you’re on nutrition assistance from the federal government … no one is going to starve in Arkansas because of the shutdown.” In reporting Kristol’s comments, AATP ran a headline stating: “Degenerate TEApublican Says Starvation ‘No Big Deal’ During Shutdown!”
In early 2014, when Republican congressman Louie Gohmert said that a minimum wage is “really not necessary in a true free market because people are going to be paid according to the value that they bring to the business,” AATP derided Gohmert as a “Tea Party Idiot.”
That same week, AATP characterized former Republican Vice President Dick Cheney as a “war criminal,” a “war profiteer,” a “torture enthusiast,” and a “bloodthirsty maniac.”
Further Reading: “About Us” (by AATTP.org); “Degenerate TEApublican Says Starvation ‘No Big Deal’ During Shutdown!” (by AATTP.org, 10-3-2013); “Fox’s Stuart Varney is Disgusted That All Poor People in America Haven’t Starved to Death Yet” (by AATTP.org, 3-12-2014); “Tea Party Idiot Louie Gohmert Says Minimum Wage is ‘Irrelevant’ to Income Inequality” (by AATTP.org, 3-11-2014).