We already know the Republican Party (or should I say, the Party formerly known as Republican) doesn't want to be identified with the Tea Party but is busy in the shadows whipping up fear and paranoia.
But locally the Republicans aren't doing a very good job of hiding their involvement. Lynn Carpenter, Republican PCO and former city of Bellingham finance director is in the midst of organizing the Bellingham Tea Party events and Charlie Crabtree, Whatcom Republicans state committeeman is working overtime to promote the event.
Here's another bit of evidence that this whole Tea Party thing is astro-turf. Who's supplying meeting space for 'Tea Party' organizing? Why none other than the BIAWC, those lobbyists for the ultra-rightwing.
Thursday, June 25, 2009So, as we get a further peak behind the curtain, we see more proof that the 'Tea Party' is nothing but a front for the same old bunch of rightwingers.
Tea Party Planning Meeting Tonight
by Karl Uppiano
Reminder, the final meeting before the July 4th Tea Party will be this evening from 5:15 to 6:30 at the Building Industry Association of Whatcom County.
It's struck me that some readers might not be aware of the shadier side of the Building Industry Association, so here's a little history:
The right wing's big gorilla
The Building Industry Association of Washington is an organization that not only is ruthless to the point of consciencelessness, it also has become an extraordinarily significant player in Washington state politics. They are, in fact, one of the most powerful funders of the conservative movement's agenda here.
And, perhaps unsurprisingly, they also boast a history of dalliances with (and underwriting of) right-wing extremism, particularly the Patriot/militia movement of the 1990s. ...
A dark history
If you go back even farther, though, you can find an even darker side to the BIAW. As Jay Taber at Skookumgeoduck has explained at some length, the BIAW has been involved in some of the ugliest political organizing in Washington state, including the formation of militias back in the early 1990s.
During this time, Taber also worked with my old friend Paul deArmond, who compiled an exhaustive record of this activity at his Public Good Special Reports site. DeArmond was recording in detail many of the same events I was observing and reporting on as a newspaper reporter back then.
What we saw happening was, in response to the state's passage of a Growth Management Act in 1990, a bevy of so-called "grass-roots" reactionary movements who were actually being underwritten and organized by a network of industry organizations, with the BIAW in a lead role. These movements ran the gamut from "property rights" groups to county-secession efforts to antitax agitation to anti-New World Order militia organizing, all under the larger umbrella of "Wise Use." ...