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I am old enough to remember when dissent was patriotic – the candidate I was supporting, Wesley Clark used that as a slogan.

Now that the hope and change times are upon us, that notion about dissent has….well, changed.

Take for instance the tea parties. Mind you, I would not march in those, as my beef with Obama has nothing to do with taxation. Still, they are a legitimate form of dissent, which ironically, gets the silence of the media that our anti-war protests once did.

But this gets more. I am not happy to use Michelle Malkin as a source but what she uncovered is relevant.

Remember when bloggers where whining about not being funded sufficiently by the party, its organizations? And deviation from propaganda getting retribution?

Someone picks up a phone, calls a big donor, and the next thing you know…the money is gone. It’s already happened.  Because that’s the way Rahm plays.

Well, it looks likethe Orange Cheeto at least is taling no risks. They are using the same underhanded methods now as they used on Hillary supporters during the primaries. Some Cheetozens brag about pretending to be  a news crew and

We’re going to ask open ended questions that seem to have a slight conservative bent to (hopefully) get them to open up and just start ranting. Then, we take any examples of racism, hatred, ignorance, and stupidity that we catch on camera and make a little movie out of it. Probably a YouTube special.

Who would have thunk it? Accusations of racism!

Fishing for them! How…deja vu! DeadHorse2.gif picture by Robbedvoter And other set-ups?

More commentary on this at the Widdershins

It looks like they are trying to reinforce the image that these people are right wing, white supremacist, terrorists.  How is that any different from what George W. Bush did to those of us who opposed the war in Iraq?  Instead of calling us racist extremists, they painted us as America hating traitors who wanted the terrorists to win.

Code Pink OTOH, is using their funding to organize counter-protests with the right message

Let’s show up with a better message: STOP funding wars and Wall Street, and start funding the needs of the people– health care, education, and a green economy. Join us as we crash their party.

It’s a more honorable response, but considering the pathetic earlier attempts, too reminiscent of the porta-potties pro-war lame attempts freepers. In intention (react to the other side) and result (be irrelevant).

Maybe Code Pink should protest the sheltering of the Bush torture administration from the responsibility demanded by Spain.

Of course, the sheltering is done by the champion of change they helped bring – and with a giggle as Gibbs got cute about his non-response to the torture question

if six former Bush administration officials—including ex-Attorney General Alberto Gonzales—ought to be indicted for having sanctioned torture at Guantanamo. So I thought I’d ask White House press secretary Robert Gibbs about the matter.

Gibbs made his non-response the running gag of the press conference

when a reporter asked Gibbs if Obama had any reaction to the conservative groups organizing “tea parties” of protest on tax day, he replied, “I’ve never monitored them nor spoken with the Spanish about them.” People in the room laughed.

And nothing is more intoxicating to a stand-up comedian than success, he took it a step further:

the dog has also not talked to the Spanish about impending torture cases.” More laughter.

I mean, let’s face it, who can think “torture” in the same sentence with “puppy”?

David Corn eventually started to wonder

But I wondered, had the press secretary just made a joke about a torture investigation? Gibbs, like other press secretaries, uses humor to disarm, deflect, or dodge. But was this untoward?

Dear David – you pushed for these people. But, yeah, wonder no more:

Ha!ha! – torture!

And speaking of the dog, the namesake didn’t escape the fawning press, but they got it all wrong. Here’s a headline

Bo-bama: First dog has ‘star quality’

No, sillies! It’s the four legged B0. Interesting that the mysterious people who returned the dog gave him a better name: Amigo’s New Hope .

Now, it’s the dog that ate torture questions…

Update

WaPo has an editorial on the tea parties in which they’re tellingly wondering

How the events play out will be a telling barometer. If these tea parties go off without a hitch and are well-attended (and, as importantly, well covered by the media) then Republicans have something on which to build. If the coverage shows a serious of sparsely attended events or covers controversial statements made by attendees, the tea parties might backfire.

Now, while it’s perfectly legit to use attendance as a measuring stick, media coverage is another story all together. W already know what the Boblogers plan. And we know from the election season that they are only the shriller version of Obama media. So, what WaPo is basically declaring here is:

If we are successful at ignoring and ridiculing those protests we can turn them into a liability.

As an anti-war protester from the Bush era I am perfectly familiar with the procedure.

Not Your Sweetie