Say the words "Tea Party" and the image in our minds is not Boston harbor in 1775. Nor should it be the image of Simon Legree chasing Eliza across the ice. As a matter of fact, there are some things about the good ol' TP some of us Kossacks can get behind and this is the reason for this diary. You see, Tea Party fundies have been screaming for some time about government gifts to the big banks and their semi-reluctance to prosecute some of the more egregious abuse of the taxpayer in the name of capitalism, which, although most Tea Partiers heartily support, some recognize ain't exactly what it used to be. The outrage about our outrageously tilted tax code has also been featured in Tea Party rhetoric as well as support for the famous, if ignored, 99%. The point of departure between the TP and progressives has been our demand for government enforcement of equality instead of leaving it to the "invisible hand" of the market.
Enter the IRS. Never widely known for common sense, coherence or subtlety, this prince of government agencies let slip that the Tea Party had been mysteriously "targeted" for special attention when it came to tax-exempt status. The Right went balistic, as well as those progresives who remembered the "enemies list" of that great defender of liberty, Richard "I am not a crook" Nixon. Especially joyful were the Beck/Limbaugh crowd, who descended like a pair of vultures on the beleaguered Obama Administration with self-righteous cries of "foul!" Of course, they were right, but they didn't know whose side they were coming down on.
As the smoke cleared a bit, we saw something else. It wasn't only the Tea Party which was on the IRS' s-list. We got words like "occupy" and "progressive" on the alert for auditors- hardly words associated with "conservative." So what could be the explanation for this? I have an hypothesis:
If the IRS had wanted to target conservative groups, why not call them 'conservative?" Maybe because most conservative groups aren't opposed to the kind of corporate robbery that goes by the name of free enterpeise these days. Maybe hitting the Tea Party, the progresssives and the Occupy people in the pocketbook could get rid of a number of gadflies annoying the folks who are busy at the moment buying the Congress with billion-dollar campaign financing gifts. In other words, perhaps the boys at the IRS aren't working so much for Mr. Obama as for the Chamber of Commerce.
This hypothesis rings a little truer when you look at the number of former CEOs or lesser emplyees of banks, hedge fund companies and other billion-buck outfits who are now part and parcel of our government, making or pushing laws to create a more profitable lifestyle for the Fortune 500. Add the number of new "regulators" we're expecting in the near future and the IRS' actions fit in rather well.
I realize this sounds like an unllikely conspiracy theory, but I think it makes a lot more sense than some of the others I've heard.......