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Reform Debate Shifts to Protesters' Tactics

By Ben Pershing
Just as the White House is increasing its focus on Web-based grass-roots activism in hopes of boosting support for health-care reform, the on-the-ground tactics of reform opponents have become a subject of heated debate.

As the congressional recess begins, liberal blogs and activists have been highlighting the disruptive behavior of protesters at Democrats' town-hall events on health care. ThinkProgress last week posted a leaked memo from a volunteer affiliated with the conservative group FreedomWorks urging activists to "rattle" and "yell out" at Democratic lawmakers, "not try to have an intelligent debate." Democrats call them ""angry mobs of rabid right-wing extremists," similar to the more controversial attendees at McCain-Palin campaign rallies last year. The DNC is spreading Web ads highlighting the protesters' most disruptive tactics.

Josh Marshall mocks the demonstrations, writing: "with all the antics and ferocity, let's be honest, it's hard to deny there's a certain 'Waiting for Guffman,' 'Best in Show' quality to the whole scene." Democratic members say they are prepared for the disruptions but don't plan to escalate tensions by fighting back aggressively, preferring to let the GOP tactics be judged on their own.

Continue reading at Political Browser »

By Ben Pershing  |  August 5, 2009; 8:24 AM ET
Categories:  The Rundown  
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Comments

This is not political protest. This is corporate protest. These people have no agenda for health care. There agenda is to stop democratic processes so that there sponsor will be able to continue their excessive profits.

Posted by: Gator-ron | August 5, 2009 7:08 PM | Report abuse

Line 1, paragraph 2 should read: So if the ANTI-Obamacare people . . .

Makes a difference

Posted by: danielhancock | August 5, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Town hall meetings have a checkered history. Often they are stacked with supporters of a candidate who ask softball questions. They are used by candidates of both parties to give the appearance of the candidate answering questions in a diverse forum when often the opposite is true.

So if the Obamacare people are using the same tactic in reverse then why is it any different than candidates or office holders stacking the meeting with their supporters?

Even if the anti-Obamacare people at these meetings are paid rabble rousers it does not diminish the fact that there is significant opposition to the proposed national health care plans submitted by Obama and others. Polls bear this out.

If Obamaites just dismiss this as kooks then they are sticking their heads in the sand.

Posted by: danielhancock | August 5, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

"Where was all this left outrage during the Code Pink demonstrations?

Posted by: JakeD"
------------
Code Pink doesn't try to pretend that they are just a bunch of ordinary citizens.

Posted by: JRM2 | August 5, 2009 1:04 PM | Report abuse

when your enemy is destroying himself, get out of the way.

Posted by: nodebris | August 5, 2009 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Where was all this left outrage during the Code Pink demonstrations?

Posted by: JakeD | August 5, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

HEALTH CARE RABBLE-ROUSERS: THE SPAWN OF AN AMERICAN GESTAPO

MSNBC's Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow got to the nub of these phony protests last night when they correctly connected the dots between the anti- health care zealots and the teabaggers, the 2000 election recount "Brooks Brothers" demonstrators, and other hard-right rabble-rousing.

Fact is, the foot soldiers in this phony, ginned-up street theater don't have to be paid by anybody; there is strong evidence that many, if not most, of them already are affiliated with, and thus subsidized by, FEDERALLY-FUNDED community volunteer organizations...

...the same GPS-activated stormtrooper vigilantes that comprise a highly organized American Gestapo that works covertly with a secretive executive branch "multi-agency coordinated action program" to violate the civil and human rights of unjustly "targeted" neighbors -- making a mockery of the rule of law.

And victims report that silent, high-tech microwave/laser "directed energy weapons" are being used to degrade the very lives of the unjustly targeted.

Read the story that the mainstream media cannot or will not tell:

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america

OR (if link is corrupted / disabled):

See "GESTAPO USA" at http://NowPublic.com/scrivener ("stream" or "stories" list).

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 5, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse

No need to worry about a "grassroots" anti-health care movement. These idiots are all paid for by conservative PAC's and directed to each town hall by extremist websites. Disgusting...

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | August 5, 2009 9:32 AM | Report abuse

No need to worry about a "grassroots" anti-health care movement. These idiots are all paid for by conservative PAC's and directed to each town hall by extremist websites. Disgusting...

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | August 5, 2009 9:30 AM | Report abuse

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