“But They Are Terrorists…”

I think that Coyote sums it up nicely:

There won’t be any direct order found telling the IRS to go hassle Conservative groups.  That’s not the way it works.  Obama’s style is to “other” groups he does not like, to impugn their motives, and to cast them as pariahs beyond the bounds of civil society.  Such and such group, he will say, opposes me not because they have reasonable differences of opinion but because they have nefarious motives.  Once a group is labelled and accepted (at least by your political followers) as such, you don’t have to order people to harass them. They just do it, because they see it as the right thing to do to harass evil people.  When Joe Nocera writes this in support of Obama in no less a platform as the NY Times, orders are superfluous

You know what they say: Never negotiate with terrorists. It only encourages them.

These last few months, much of the country has watched in horror as the Tea Party Republicans have waged jihad on the American people. Their intransigent demands for deep spending cuts, coupled with their almost gleeful willingness to destroy one of America’s most invaluable assets, its full faith and credit, were incredibly irresponsible. But they didn’t care. Their goal, they believed, was worth blowing up the country for, if that’s what it took…

He concludes by saying

For now, the Tea Party Republicans can put aside their suicide vests. But rest assured: They’ll have them on again soon enough. After all, they’ve gotten so much encouragement.

There are probably some deeply confused people in the IRS right now — after all they were denying tax exempt status to terrorists, to enemies of America.  They should be treated like heroes, and now they are getting all this criticism.  So unfair.

Jay Carney mentioned the other day that the White House and Barack Obama is responsible for setting “tone.”

I think that Obama has been clear that the Tea Party is the bad guy.  That’s the tone.

18 responses to ““But They Are Terrorists…”

  1. This is some tin foil hat stuff, Pino. Joe Nocera calls the Tea Party terrorists and supports Obama. Therefore, the IRS didn’t need an order to go after them, because….what, they all read Nocera and understand that he speaks for the President? I suppose now that the President has spoken out against the IRS, it doesn’t matter, because all true liberals heard a dog whistle in his condemnation that instructs us to keep on persecuting the Tea Party?

    There is no evidence of a conspiracy reaching to the White House because….wait for it…there was no conspiracy reaching to the White House. To assume there is one because of an NYTimes op-ed is pretty weak.

    • There is no evidence of a conspiracy reaching to the White House because….wait for it…there was no conspiracy reaching to the White House.

      I think that’s what Coyote is saying. There is no evidence because there was no direct order.

      That’s the point.

      When the enemy has been defined, it’s easy to protect the good guys from the bad guys.

      Check the remaining quote Coyote presents:

      But Obama, in his most candid moments, acknowledged that race was still a problem. In May 2010, he told guests at a private White House dinner that race was probably a key component in the rising opposition to his presidency from conservatives, especially right-wing activists in the anti-incumbent “Tea Party” movement that was then surging across the country.

  2. I think that some IRS agents noted the proliferation of these new political groups and justifiably worried that they were evading tax law. They then did not follow the proper rules in how they investigated them. No orders from the top, no “tone” that bureaucrats feel bound to follow (indeed, that’s the opposite of how bureaucracies work). But evidence is pretty strong that a lot of these groups were violating tax law – and when that happens, I want the IRS to be watching!

    • You nailed it here, I’ve been so caught up in deciding whether or not the IRS was doing something horrible or not, and admittedly their way of investigating the groups went way too far and should be policed in the future, that it wasn’t until today that I realized how absurd it was for the Tea Party to be getting these c4 exemptions. Social welfare? I’m waiting to see any example.

      • it wasn’t until today that I realized how absurd it was for the Tea Party to be getting these c4 exemptions. Social welfare? I’m waiting to see any example.

        From wikipedia, granted, but still:

        “civics and civics issues…”

        This includes employees of corporations for recreational purposes.

        And it specifically allows for the participation of political campaigns and elections.

        The contributions are not tax exempt to the donor, they are only exempt to the organization.

        Which part of the code has you concerned of abuse?

        How is a Tea Party group running afoul of the law while the “Elm Street Tennis Club”, complete with its political outreach arm, isn’t?

        And remember, while you may not agree with the concept, the idea that property first belongs to the individual and not the state seems to be both an educational issue and a civic issue.

        501(c)(4) organizations are generally civic leagues and other corporations operated exclusively for the promotion of “social welfare”, such as civics and civics issues, or local associations of employees with membership limited to a designated company or people in a particular municipality or neighborhood, and with net earnings devoted exclusively to charitable, educational, or recreational purposes.[35] An organization is operated exclusively for the promotion of social welfare if it is primarily engaged in promoting the common good and general welfare of the people of the community.[36]

        501(c)(4) organizations may inform the public on controversial subjects and attempt to influence legislation relevant to its program[37] and, unlike 501(c)(3) organizations, they may also participate in political campaigns and elections, as long as its primary activity is the promotion of social welfare.[38] The tax exemption for 501(c)(4) organizations applies to most of their operations, but contributions may be subject to gift tax, and income spent on political activities – generally the advocacy of a particular candidate in an election – is taxable.[39] 501(c)(4) organizations are not permitted direct or indirect participation or intervention in political campaigns on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.[36]

        Contributions to 501(c)(4) organizations are usually not deductible as charitable contributions for U.S. federal income tax, with a few exceptions.[40] 501(c)(4) organizations are not required to disclose their donors publicly.[41]

        • The tax exemption for 501(c)(4) organizations applies to most of their operations, but contributions may be subject to gift tax, and income spent on political activities – generally the advocacy of a particular candidate in an election – is taxable.[39] 501(c)(4) organizations are not permitted direct or indirect participation or intervention in political campaigns on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office.[36]

          This is the part of interest. Sure, a group that advocates for civic causes (helping the homeless, medical marijuana, funding church youth groups, what have you) is also allowed to participate in some political areas, but (1) politics can’t be their primary interest, it has to be supplemental, and (2) they can’t advocate specifically for or against a candidate.

          Looking at the Tea Party Patriots website from 2012, for example, their core mission is inherently political: “The Tea Party Patriots’ mission is to restore America’s founding principles of Fiscal Responsibility, Constitutionally Limited Government and Free Markets.” That’s political, not civic. Furthermore, the Tea Party was often advocating for the defeat of certain candidates (for example, Obama featured largely in most Tea Party protests). I’d wager that most of all Tea Party groups’ expenses were related to politics.

          What I was asking for was any evidence that there are Tea Party groups whose primary purpose is NOT political. You’re right that they can be political to a degree, but if their primary purpose is political then they can’t be 501(c)(4).

  3. Pino, the argument Coyote makes is absurd on its face. By that logic, any action done against any group the President criticizes can be traced back to the President, even if there is no evidence. It doesn’t take a logician to see the massive logical fallacy in such a claim. Look, the tea party groups seem to have been engaged in dubious tax evasion. The IRS was worried about that, legitimately, but didn’t follow procedures. Occam’s razor, that’s much more believable than to think these bureaucrats were seeking signals from above (remember, IRS agents serve under Republicans and Democrats, they aren’t political appointees) on who to go after. The former would fit what they do, the latter requires a bizarre conspiracy theory.

  4. All through 2012 Tea Party groups complained about the IRS. Tell me why nobody thinks it strange when the IRS asks whether any of your family members are thinking about running for office? Why the IRS, in violation of it’s own policy, asks for a list of your donors? Why does no one think it strange that confidential information collected on right wing groups is then leaked by ( somebody ) to their political enemies on the left?( Karl Rove’s Group ) .

    I know it was just a coincidence that an evil rich donor to Mitt Romney, like Mr. Vandersloot is suddenly audited and runs up $ 80,000 in legal fees to defend himself from that and another audit by the Dept of Labor.

    Yesseree Bob, nothing to see. There is nothing there, there. Some low level employees in Cincinnati thought it all up and did it on their own. Occam’s Razor? Yup, no need to look further.

    • Oh yes, Frank Vandersloot, who is the only person to have any awareness of these audits. I’ve never seen anyone else claim to have seen these IRS letters he received, despite the fact that he was plastered all over Breitbart and Fox News. I think you need a better source for your paranoid delusions, alan.

  5. nickgb,

    Vandersloot has told his story for what, a year now? Not just on O’Reilly, but also in the WSJ. I have not found retractions from them, but I suppose you have better sources than me.

    Have no fear, the man you voted for will easily survive these issues. 50% of Obama voters couldn’t care less about the four Americans he abandoned in Benghazi. The other 50% can’t spell IRS. From Fast N Furious to the AP scandal, nothing matters.

    Even the fact that the gap between rich and poor has widened under this President does not matter. Apathy is the President’s bestest friend.

    • Yes, Vandersloot has told his story for a year now without anyone contradicting him, because the IRS won’t comment on a person’s individual tax situation for privacy concerns, and not a single person on those shows has asked for proof. We have a single anecdote by a man who has a clear political agenda, being pushed by a propaganda machine that doesn’t provide any evidence to back him up.

      Remember Bill Pullman’s character in True Lies? He tells women he’s a spy because it’s a story they’ll never be able to falsify. The fact that he did so for years didn’t actually make him a spy, though. Vandersloot is claiming persecution from an agency he knows won’t be able to refute his claims because they can’t talk publicly about it, and meanwhile he has full possession of the evidence but won’t let anyone see it.

      I’m ignoring what you said about how we don’t care that Americans died, because you’re a troll and I understand that trolls gotta troll. As someone with family members in the military and many friends in the diplomatic corps, I’d tell you to take comments like that outside so we can discuss it properly, but then you’d have to leave whatever bridge you live under when you comment. We could all throw around national body counts and whose party is to blame, which is probably a good thing to do because no President should ever put Americans in danger without cause, but you’ll find yourself on the losing end of yet another argument there.

      • I believe it was Bill Paxton in True Lies, not Bill Pullman. I don’t know about your political facts but your movie facts need some work! 😉

        • I am so incredibly embarrassed right now… The worst part is that I had my mental image perfect but simply reversed the names… No one should ever get away with confusing Bill “Game over, man” Paxton with Bill “Independence Day” Pullman, however. Thank you for setting the record straight!

  6. nickgb,

    It is the cover up and lies that our Government engaged in regarding Benghazi that is the problem. If they just acknowledged they had screwed up, but they built lie on top of lie to cover it up.

    The days and days of the video stories. Blaming the talking points on the CIA. Then punishing Mr. Hicks for speaking the truth when he could no longer stand the lies. For someone with friends in the diplomatic corps, why aren’t you breathing fire over that?

    • I’m pissed as hell that we don’t have better security overseas, but the State Dept. has been underfunded over and over again (which is a bipartisan Congressional shame). It’s hard to blame the White House.

      I wanted an investigation, and they gave us one. Then Issa goes out and grandstands, puts up people like Hicks who end up contradicted by the evidence. Someone (possibly Cornyn’s staff) leaks selectively edited emails to ABC News, and they turn out to be misleading. There is certainly some Orwellian truth-control going on, but you’ve got the wrong side.

      This need for the President to come out and definitively call something terrorism when we aren’t sure if it’s terrorism is simply mind-boggling. All I can gather is that terrorism=evil, and thus by not calling it that he wasn’t recognizing the true nature of the act or something. If he had said “terrorism” immediately, what would have changed in the American response?

      (I can tell you the Libyans would’ve suddenly gotten a lot more nervous about letting Americans on their soil, having seen what happens to any country where AQ shows up)

      • This need for the President to come out and definitively call something terrorism when we aren’t sure if it’s terrorism is simply mind-boggling. All I can gather is that terrorism=evil, and thus by not calling it that he wasn’t recognizing the true nature of the act or something. If he had said “terrorism” immediately, what would have changed in the American response?

        The thing is, Obama continued to use the video story for weeks. He knew it was terrorism the very day.

        So why lie?

      • nickgb,

        Since you mentioned it, I assume that you are at least hinting that budget cuts contributed to the Benghazi murders? Please allow me to correct you. Charlene Lamb who is Deputy Assistant Secretary of State – Diplomatic Security told a Congressional Committee that budget concerns had nothing to do with the insufficient security.

        The basic facts remain that in the months before the murders, security for the Benghazi Consulate was deteriorating while the threats to it were increasing. The State Department cannot say they were not warned. After the fact, somebody deliberately concocted this ridiculous fable about a video to cover some collective behinds. Everyone trying to get to the truth is smeared. Grandstanding? Show me where ? When Issa is constantly blocked and delayed by the State Department and the White House, it ain’t grandstanding as he tries to get the truth.

        All of the scandals have one thing in common. Everybody is Sargent Schultz. They see nothing, hear nothing, know nothing.

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