Connecticut Tea Party – Update

UPDATE: I am an idiot. The credit for this protest, if it were not made plain, lies with the RVO chat room and most especially, I think, Rick from West Hartford. I say I think because I really am not the force behind this today. Rick is and his com-padres who put this together. Without notice, and much organizing help they pulled quite a crowd and that should be a good indicator of how angry people are. Stay fired up folks. 2010 is a year and a half away. Congrats Rick.

Note: This event occurred on Feb. 27.

Plus if you are looking for what others did today go here and go here. Plus read this from Instapundit.

Here are some of the pictures of today’s tax protest. (Taken with my swell iPhone which I did not buy with stimulus money, or tax redistribution money)

The “push back” against confiscation for pet liberal projects (honey bees, community organizers, grape genetics, bullying and tattoo removal) began today in Hartford, and it was a grassroots effort. The stimulus package stimulates nothing but federal and state governments, while the people who produce the tax revenue were ignored.

Without much publicity up to 250 people came and joined the Connecticut Tea Party rally in front of the state capital. This is just the beginning, the first of a number of rallies the Tea Party plans on holding around the state up until election day. Movements destined for the trash heap start big and fizzle. I can assure you, even in a blue state, today they planted the acorn. To see a lot more go to the gallery.

Or watch the ones below as a slide show in your browser … easier to see.








30 replies
  1. davis
    davis says:

    I wonder who the federal and state government are. Are they not populated by humans? Don't they pay taxes too? The more of them you have, the more tax revenue you get, yes? Are you going to pick and choose which ones are worth having and which ones you don't need?

    • Steve McGough
      Steve McGough says:

      Maybe we should start with the Yellow Pages. If there is a business out there that provides a service, the government does not need to be involved in providing that service.

      Then we look at education, certainly private institutions do an excellent job teaching our kids, why not let them take care of everyone? … and no more complaints about Calhoun's salary either.

      Certainly many of the teachers, administrators and other employees working for the government would be absorbed by the private sector. But that certainly would be scary for them, since they would need to compete and perform.

      In your world, the thousands of people who made buggy whips would have the right to that job wouldn't they? Or the government would be responsible to train them and provide another job correct?

      Then we can look at the benefits that government employees have. I'm not talking about salaries, I'm talking benefits. How do they compare to similar positions in the private sector? All those benefits that are "off the table" since they are contractual need to be put back on the table.

      You're comment indicates that more people should work for the government and we should have more of them since they pay taxes. Brilliant.

      Your philosophy is similar to the "stimulus" plan which takes water from the deep end of the pool and dumps it into the shallow end of the pool expecting the shallow end to get deeper.

      Good luck with that. Sorry for my rant…

  2. Anne-EH
    Anne-EH says:

    Jim, THANK-YOU for coming and energizing the protest crowd. I too, also THANK Rick for his hard work on a short time's notice. 150-200 people showing up, that is not BAD at all. Shows the growing anger over this stimulus plan with all the PORKIES in it. To all those politicos who are for all this PORK, be it in Washington D.C. or up in Hartford, REMEMBER 2010 is coming and yous will HEAR from US. 

      • Darlene
        Darlene says:

        Jason, It seems you have a medium to communicate, so instead of complaining about the turnout how about doing something about it.  Plan a rally, we will come.  Make it your responsibility to get more people there next time.  The more of us who pass the word the more will attend.  Believe me, for everyone there on Friday, there are many others who would have liked to be there had they known.  There are many more out there who feel the way we do, even many who now regret voting for Obama. 

      • Jason
        Jason says:


        I tried my best to make people aware of the event.  Sorry my comments may have offended you a bit, but I was just being honest.  It was dishearening to get all fired up, go to the Tea Party, and find only a handful of people there.  I NEED A SIGN OF HOPE!  Believe me, I'll keep fighting the left-ward thrust with everything I'm worth.

        As far as organizing an event, you are just as capable as I am of doing that!  In all honesty, I'm probably better as a behind the scenes/pen mightier than the sword kind of guy.  I'm not a public speaker-cheerleader type.  I'll do my best to spread the word through my blog.   

  3. Rick-WH
    Rick-WH says:

    Thank you to all who contributed to making this event so successful.

    Many individuals from across the state working both independently and together to make the event possible.  Those who came took  some of the very first steps towards educating the people of our state and nation about what is going on both in Hartford and in Washington.

    Our ancestors fought hard and died for all that we have in this country.  Over the past several decades, we have seen much of what they fought for slowly slip away.  In recent times, the pace has quickened considerably – and much is being done to push through a lot of "reforms" quickly – during this difficult economic period.

    It is time to peacefully "push back" and save our country. 

    Remember this, without the freedom of the airwaves (i.e. talk radio) and the Internet, none of this would be possible. 

    Special thanks to Jim Vicevich for appearing today, making such inspiring comments – and for helping to educate and motivate us to go on another day.

  4. davis
    davis says:

    Nice rant Steve. However, I did not write the following:"The stimulus package stimulates nothing but federal and state governments, while the people who produce the tax revenue were ignored.". Those words are from Jim Vicevich. I think those words are dumb and I responded. Who are these tax revenue producing people? Just the Conservatives?

    As to the Yellow Pages do you really consult these days? Mine have been propping up a rickety table for years. As to the sainted Coach Calhoun, he should check the facts before he mouths off on how much dough he brings to UCONN. Is he cut out of the same "free market" mold as those slimeballs in Wall Street who have screwed us so well in the last couple of years?

  5. davis
    davis says:

    Jim said, look above: " The stimulus package stimulates nothing but the federal and state governments, while the people who produce tax revenue are ignored". That was pretty shallow. Either write something that makes sense (and does not ignore the obvious) or give some of us a break. The rant was "nice" but misplaced, and don't worry about my "getting it".

  6. davis
    davis says:

    Steve, do I detect a bit of "envy" at the benefits that state employees get? Have you checked  the benefits the GM, Ford etc. employees get? They in the "private sector"? How about definite plan pensions in the private sector? And what about Coach Calhoun,  a state employee whose benefits dwarf anything I can imagine. But, oops, can't talk about Calhoun, because as Jim and others reminded us:" He gets it"!

  7. Steve McGough
    Steve McGough says:

    Envy? Are you kidding? If you owned a percentage of stock in a company that was paying unsustainable wages and/or benefits would you be envious of those employees? I certainly would not.

    Let's see… GM – failing, Ford – having big issues… Honda, Toyota and Nissan paying wages and benefits that are market rates without union bullying … not having as many issues.

  8. davis
    davis says:

    Great dodge, Steve. We were talking employees, not shareholders. And I am sure that you would readily give up your benefits without having a gun to your head. And a dodge on the great coach as well.

  9. Steve McGough
    Steve McGough says:

    I never commented on what Calhoun said. I stated a FACT that we would not be having the discussion about Calhoun if the education system was private instead of government run.

    You're not getting my analogies. I'm a shareholder in the government since I pay taxes. Employees who work for the state – in my opinion – get too much in benefits, those payments are unsustainable since there is not enough tax revenue to cover the costs. On top of that, we get crappy service from the government including pretty bad results in education.

  10. davis
    davis says:

    You are right Steve. I do not get your analogies because you do not state what they refer to and how they apply. You did not state any FACT about Coach Calhoun, you simply let your words hang in the air (read them over, I did more than once).

    As to the benefits that state employees get, don't blame them for getting them, somebody gave them to them (join them maybe you might like them too?). The same for the "legacy" guys at GM et al.

    And as I said before, Jim posted the statement I responded to, and it is still off-the-wall.

  11. Bruce
    Bruce says:

    davis – I have to say that I think Steve has the big picture correct and you seem to be needlessly parsing the discussion (employees vs shareholders, you didn't mention Calhoun, etc.)

    The bottom line is simple if you are willing to consider it and it all comes down to "total compensation" – salary, benefits and retirement.  In the private sector (unionized or not) an employer must come up with the capital to cover the cost of all compensation in a fixed time frame (usually the fiscal year).  The employer must manage cash flow, manufacturaing, sales, etc. to ensure that the cash is available.  If total compensation is too high, the product price must be hiked threatening sales and customers or costs must be reduced by trimming dead wood or finding other efficiencies.  It's a delicate balance and if a CEO is good at maintaining the balance, then he or she should be compensated accordingly.

    The government sector is completely skewed from private sector.  Compensation is split into different buckets: negotiated, non-merit raises; health benefits on a separate line item; and retirement contributions can often be "deferred" to the future.  When a government's cash is short, they raise their "price" i.e. the tax and use the force of govenment to insist that the consumer keep buying the product.  When taxpayers revolt, contract mechanisms are often in place to prevent real reform (finding deadwood and efficiencies do to merit) and often genuine and useful services are cut serving as a punishment to the taxpayer.

    So davis, on one side we have a free market private sector that relies upon creating goods and services that people are freely willing to pay for and talented individuals who can balance the forces and on the other side we have a government sector steeped in protectionism that provide services that the public may or may not desire but are forced to fund under penaly of law and encarceration.  Are they really the same?

  12. PaulCT
    PaulCT says:

    Not sure who to call or contact to make your state representatives aware of your concerns?

    Enter your complete zip code plus four (look on any piece of mail) and VoteSmart provides elected official details.  Let your officials know the Connecticut Tea Party has your interest and should have their attention.

  13. davis
    davis says:

    Bruce, Steve et al. Thanks for the fine explanations. Since I have worked in the private sector all my life, and in management positions as well, I know how the system works. And it really does not quite work according to the fine theory above. Just look how the CEOs of companies going belly up have taken care of themselves and fired a lot of competent people, no doubt.

    My issue is that in the case of these postings by Jim etc. is that they are more like red meat being thrown out than some cogent arguments. And that Conservatives are starting to present themselves as victims of the bad-bad government that takes away their hard earned money. That victimization line is fed to one and all by Rush and Jim when they rant against the Liberals. Ironic, yes?

    • Bruce
      Bruce says:

      davis – I would suggest that just because there are instances of abusive CEOs (and I don't doubt that they exist) that this invalidates the bigger picture in any way.  Any comments on the substance of the observations themselves?

      It's interesting that you bring up victimhood.  There is an important distinction between being victimized and being a victim.  You cannot control being victimized just as you cannot unilaterally stop war; someone attacks you, the government takes more of your earnings, you are frivolously sued because you have a successful business.  Your choice is whether to become a victim in your own mind or not.  If you fight back, then you are not a victim, you are a combatant defending yourself.

      Traditional America and conservatives who appreciate and defend the founding principles of small government and individual freedom are victimized daily in the press, by bureaucracies, by politicians and by judges.  But we are not victims because we don't accept it, we fight back.  That is probably why some  progressives and liberals dislike Jim's show because it clearly demonstrates who the aggressor is – the Left.

  14. davis
    davis says:

    Once again thanks for the "lesson" in how things are. My observation as stated above, is that you explanations are a "nice theory". The practice of which is a rather different affair, both in the private and public sector. As to the issue of being a victim or being victimized, I am glad you have a neat explanation too. Naturally only conservatives fight back when they are victims/victimized. It sets up your final statement which is the identification of the aggressors. It goes without saying that the aggressors are of one flavor only: I beg to differ, they come in all flavors and political leanings. And Jim's show is not the only supplier of the truth, in spite of the disclaimers that he only reports and lets people decide.

    • Bruce
      Bruce says:

      davis – Ok, so I realize that this is not supposed to be a discussion forum (apologies to Steve and Jim), but a place to sound-off on the posted topic.  I engaged you because you engaged other posters when they express their opinions.  So at the risk of belaboring this…

      I have offered details to specific "theories" that I believe accurately describe big picture of private/public sector economics and political vicitmization.  The measure of a theory is how well it reflects and predicts future behavior and how well it can be reproduced and verified by others. 

      You say that the practice [of economics] is a rather different affair.   Can you offer some specific details that eclipse or invalidate the big picture observations that I offered?  Can you offer credible details of Traditional America or conservatives victimizing liberals? (I'm sure some blogs will help, but remember, you have to be in a position of power to victimize)

      I feel like I'm debating my little brother.  I used to form arguments based on facts and he would simply say "no".  When I finally asked if his plan was to keep saying "no" until I gave up, he smiled and said "yes".  If you are going to comment on other's opinion it would be nice to provide some real details rather than saying the equivalent of "no".  Otherwise, perhaps you can keep your opinions to yourself.

  15. davis
    davis says:

    Bruce, here are some of my opinions; you need not agree other than to the notion that I am entitled to them. My tenet is that “he who rules makes the rules”. That applies to the private and the public sector.

    In the private sector it shows up, among other places, in the compensation. Executives, all the guys who have a C… defining their role, aided and abetted by the Boards (made up of executives or former executives from other companies) decide how to compensate themselves. They make sure that whether the company soars or tanks, the compensation is as generous as they dare make it. Everybody else gets something else: if the company tanks, people get laid-off. That is not the neat balancing act in your model. The executives might leave, but they simply go to another company and start the cycle again. This can be validated by checking what the likes of Ken Lay, Thain, all the AIG guys and a list too long to type.

    A similar situation takes place in the public sector, the pseudo-executives, the politicians also decide how to compensate themselves and everybody else gets something else. The main goal of the politician is to get re-elected. He spends most of his time on this activity; the staff does most of the work, writes and reads the bills (that is why the politicians can truthfully say they never have read the bills). If they are rejected by their party of affiliation, they change the rule (see Sen. Lieberman) and get re-elected by the opposition.

    As to victimization/victim, I say it come in all flavors without distinction of party affiliation. No political party has cornered this market.

    Finally, I am not your little brother.

    • Bruce
      Bruce says:

      davis – you may be surprised to find out that I don't disagree with these points at all.  I used to play softball for a (Democrat) Congressman's team in D.C. in the 90s and was good friends with the Legislative Assistants and aides who did most of the heavy lifting for the Congressman.  Whereas I can believe that politicians can honestly say that they haven't read the bill, unless their staffs are incompetent, I cannot believe that they are unaware of the political ramifications of either the main body or any hidden, poison pills.  But pretending not to know what is in the bill by truthfully saying that he or she didn't read it is in itself a deception.

      As to the private sector, executive malfeasance is not surprising.  As a matter of fact, there are a handful of professions where participants can "earn" incredible salaries simply because they are in the middle of large flows of money and they skim their commissions off the top.  Personally, I do not hold these professions in the same high regard as I would an entrepreneur who develops a new products that people choose to purchase and thereby becomes wealthy. 

      Private sector sharks and public sector powermongers will always exist.  The question is choice and freedom.  Whenever government (with good intentions) tries to clamp down on those that it perceives as predators, they inevitably impact the freedoms of those playing by the rules (gun control is an easy example).  But growing government gives the powermongers more power, who use this new found control to do what they personally want (redistribute wealth, solidify their seat, pander to get votes) and because they have the force of government to impose their will there is nothing to stop the tide once it starts to rise.

      Nothing I can do will change the hearts of people content to be sharks or powermongers.  But I will err on the side of personal freedom and small government because this is the only way that an individual entrepreneur or employee can choose a path to wealth.  The government will never make an individual wealthy and government growth is a one-way street.  Thanks for not being my little brother. 🙂

      • davis
        davis says:

        I agree that the government will not make me wealthy, I also note every day that the private sector can take a lot of my wealth away. I am glad that there was enough wisdom somewhere not to privatize Social Security. I don't  hear a peep from the Conservatives on the issue these days.

  16. comanchepilot
    comanchepilot says:

    When and where is the link to the April 15, 2009 Tea Party?

    Who is setting it up? 

    And hey -= about privatizing Social Security-  if you got to keep 100% ofthe tax, even with a 50% haircut in stock prices you STILL would get to keep more money that if the feds take  it and then redistribute it.  Its not what you make, its what you get to keep thats important.

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