The presence of the words “tea party” in the title should tip you off that there is very little substance to be found in this post. Still, it’s good for a laugh.
So there’s this group called the Coffee Party. It’s pretty much the perfect antithesis to the Tea Party. It started on Facebook, so it really is grassroots. It celebrates diversity. It celebrates different viewpoints. It wants people to engage in discussion. It wants people to engage because they want to, not because they’re frightened into doing so. To me, it just sounds lovely, and hey, it’s only like a month old, so who knows how much it could grow? (I contemplated using “percolate” here, but decided my readers would resent the pun.)
Well, you can tell WorldNetDaily is PISSED. And more importantly, you can tell they are insecure. How far they go out of their way to put down the Coffee Party in their breaking news story is just ridiculous! I will share some excerpts from this story (with red highlights) juxtaposed with excerpts from the Coffee Party website (with blue highlights).
Leading up to today’s “National Coffee Party Day” – the countrywide launch of a leftwing movement meant as an answer to the tea parties – a CNN article asked, “Will the Coffee Party rise to the scale of the Tea Party movement? Saturday is the first big test.”
If “scale” is indeed the measure by which the Coffee Party will be graded, however, today’s cup-o’-Joe kickoff has earned a resounding “F.”
By the way, WND never links to CNN, even when they directly cite it. Here’s the article. It’s probably because they don’t want you to see the ironic juxtaposition of these two paragraphs:
“This Coffee Party looks like a weak attempt at satire or a manufactured response to a legitimate widespread grassroots movement,” says Brendan Steinhauser (no relation to this reporter), director of federal and state campaigns for FreedomWorks, a nonprofit conservative organization that helps train volunteer activists and has provided much of the organizational heft behind the Tea Party movement.
“It’s driven from the top down and it’s not a grass roots movement driven from the bottom up,” Jim Hoft of the St. Louis Tea Party tells CNN.
At any rate, the top of the Coffee Party webpage proudly announces that National Coffee Party Day was a huge success. For marketing purposes, they probably wouldn’t have said anything different regardless, but it doesn’t look that different from the original tiny Tea Party gatherings from back before last April’s rallies.
But WND doesn’t want you to remember that there were gatherings before April 15:
Last year, the fledgling tea party movement scheduled nearly 2,000 gatherings on April 15, Tax Day. Over the summer, tea partiers packed health-care town halls by the hundreds, overflowing venues and leading to lines running around the block. On Sept. 12, the crowd of tea partiers that flooded Washington, D.C., was estimated into the hundreds of thousands, possibly topping 1 million.
It sounds very David and Goliath, don’t you think? Goliath wants to remind you how much they’ve grown and just how intimidating they can be! And let’s not forget how wildly inflated the 9/12 rallies were, with fake aerial photos and massive lies, though would you expect any different from Michelle Malkin? Nate Silver reminds us there no more than 70,000 people at that rally, which is quite a different number from Malkin’s 2 million claim.
Here’s some coverage on CNN about the weekend’s event:
A statement released by the party said “today’s coffee houses have been a huge success — both for Coffee Party USA and for democracy. All across the U.S., Americans from all political sides sat down for civil conversation and, of course, coffee.”
Hmm… even if there were only about 350 Coffee Parties, they sound a lot more productive than any Tea Party event ever. Two astounding things happened: people actually discussed issues and people actually drank coffee! See, I think that’s so respectable. The Tea Party is built upon teabagging, not tea, while the Coffee Party is just about coffee, like you’d expect.
After listing as many small numbers as they could, WND makes this claim:
WND contacted The Coffee Party USA for more precise headcounts, but received no reply.
Riiiiight. I hope the Coffee Party chose the tactic of only talking with legitimate news organizations, like, oh, I don’t know, CNN!
“They will make an effort to project this as the voice of a new ‘grassroots’ and ‘bipartisan’ political coalition,” commented Barry Willoughby, one of the leaders of a loose confederation in Florida calling itself the Naples Tea Party, in a Naples News opinion piece. “Does one really think the coffee party will receive a grassroots/bipartisan mantel that has forever eluded the left?“
Does anyone on the right even know what “grassroots” means? The mocking quotes annoy me so much. Let’s see how this accusation reflects how the the Coffee Party actually describes itself:
Coffee Party USA aims to reinvigorate the public sphere, drawing from diverse backgrounds and diverse perspectives, with the goal of expanding the influence of the People in America’s political arena. We do not require nor adhere to any preexisting ideology. We encourage deliberation guided by reason amongst the many viewpoints held by our members. We see our diversity as a strength, not a weakness, because we believe that faithful deliberation from multiple vantage points is the best way to achieve the common good. It is in the responsible and reasonable practice of deliberation that we hope to contribute to society.
Gosh, even if it never takes off like the Tea Party, that’s still refreshing. So what now, Wiloughby from Naples? Got anything else to say? (The answer is no, but he can quote somebody else.)
Willoughby then quotes a comment made by Charles Martel on Red State: “The problem with this, and any other wannabe leftist tea party equivalent is this: The tea party began and has flourished because those involved felt – rightly – that they had no voice in our country today, that they were being ignored or outright mocked by government and the media. The tea party has given us back power and a voice.
“Any such group on the left is going to run into the very real problem that they already have a voice,” writes Martel. “The media, Hollywood, academia, basically the entire government – they’re all saying the same thing this Coffee Party will be saying. And the movement loses any motivation and drive right from the get go.”
Sorry, Martel, but you are still outright mocked. You’re just scarier now.
Well, I think WorldNetDaily has done everything they can to call the Coffee Party puny, for now. How about we end with more refreshing language from the Coffee Party??
We are 100% grassroots. No lobbyists here. No pundits. And no hyper-partisan strategists calling the shots in this movement. We are a spontaneous and collective expression of our desire to forge a culture of civic engagement that is solution-oriented, not blame-oriented.
To the Coffee Party, you have my kudos. Bringing people together to actually discuss issues is the foundation of effective democracy. As far as I’m concerned, every individual you bring to the conversation is worth at least 10 angry, racist, spelling-inept Tea Party drones. Keep up the good work!
(Just a reminder of how stupid the Tea Partiers are…)