Tea Party History Lesson

Published on Wednesday, April 15, 2009 by CommonDreams.org

The Real Boston Tea Party was an Anti-Corporate Revolt

Tax Day Protester - Santa Ana, CA

Tax Day Protester - Santa Ana, CA

by Thom Hartmann

CNBC Correspondent Rick Santelli called for a “Chicago Tea Party” on Feb 19th in protesting President Obama’s plan to help homeowners in trouble. Santelli’s call was answered by the right-wing group FreedomWorks, which funds campaigns promoting big business interests, and is the opposite of what the real Boston Tea Party was. FreedomWorks was funded in 2004 by Dick Armey (former Republican House Majority leader & lobbyist); consolidated Citizens for a Sound Economy, funded by the Koch family; and Empower America, a lobbying firm, that had fought against healthcare and minimum-wage efforts while hailing deregulation.

Anti-tax “tea party” organizers are delivering one million tea bags to a Washington, D.C., park Wednesday morning – to promote protests across the country by people they say are fed up with high taxes and excess spending.

The Lone OC Counter-Protester

The Lone OC Counter-Protester

The real Boston Tea Party was a protest against huge corporate tax cuts for the British East India Company, the largest trans-national corporation then in existence. This corporate tax cut threatened to decimate small Colonial businesses by helping the BEIC pull a Wal-Mart against small entrepreneurial tea shops, and individuals began a revolt that kicked-off a series of events that ended in the creation of The United States of America.

Read the rest HERE.

  1 comment for “Tea Party History Lesson

  1. Dan
    April 18, 2009 at 11:01 am

    Hi Thom, or is it Chris?
    Interesting perspective but I would encourage you to research the history a bit further. While most of the people at the modern “Tea Parties” had no understanding of the original Boston Tea Party the idea that it was a “protest against corporate tax cuts” is a complete fiction recently published by the NY Indypendant. The issue in 1773 was government taking powers that they did not have. The British government wanted the Colonist to accept their new taxes (yes, that were passed without representation) and they saw an opportunity. They believed that if the (illegally) taxed tea was cheaper than the untaxed tea people would buy it, thereby accepting the right of the government to tax them without representation. The tea was just bait.
    If you want to argue that the “Tax Day Tea Party” had little connection to the Boston Tea Party you could certainly make that argument but I don’t think you would want to promote a fiction to do so.
    I wish I could have met your “Lone counter protestor” He was right to ask where these people were when Bush was spending. I would add “Where were you when Congress abdicated its authority to declare war to the President(Iraq/Afghanistan)?” and “Where were you when Presidential Directive 20 51 was signed?” but sometimes it takes people a while to recognize threats to liberty. Both sides in the political debate seem to have trouble with that when they are in power.
    Best wishes to you, Dan

    PS I’m the guy with the Tea Box.

Comments are closed.