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Truthfully, I think a lot of people are frustrated and fed up and scared, and they're looking to rail against anything. Ask a hundred people who took part in the rallies today what they were supposed to be about, and I'd be surprised if 10 of them could give the correct answer.

I figure we should be happy these people are looking to take out their frustrations in such a frivolous way. There are far more dangerous means of expression that some demagogue might have whipped them up into a frenzy over. Thankfully, the self-appointed spokesman for the movement is Newt Gingrich, who's no Huey Long.

And my favorite double entendre refers to how the GOP swooped in and co-opted this event from the Libertarian Party: "If you plan to tea bag across the country, you'll really need a Dick Armey."

Jeff Mariotte

Having now seen the coverage (including some on Fox, painful as it was), I think you're right--it was so unfocused as to be essentially meaningless. Essentially, people seemed to be upset about the fact that someone is now trying to do something about the economy, when probably they should have been upset at the Bush administration for the long term damage it did. The deficit? Talk to Bush. Out of control spending? Talk to Bush. But instead they're blaming "Maobama" for taking the absolutely necessary steps to turn things around. And of course, Fox and Dick Armey and Newt are stoking it, for their own aggrandizement, and supported by various billionaires like Scaife who desperately want to keep the top rate at Bush levels.

One has to wonder if it even occurred to the teabaggers that they were holding their events, for the most part, in public parks paid for with taxes, to which they traveled on roads built and maintained with taxes, under the watchful eye of police officers paid for with taxes.

The dangerous part of all this--which some out there seem to be pushing--is what came after the Boston Tea Party, which was armed revolution. These people are clearly in the minority, but a desperate minority can be like a cornered tiger. When one of them goes out with a gun after whoever he thinks is holding him back, they'll all disavow it, but it'll be the fault of Newt and Dick and Rupert and Scaife and everyone else who ginned up these people for their own selfish reasons.

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