If The Communist Party Held a Rally, Would Anyone Care?
April 16, 2009, 8:58 am
Filed under: Ian | Tags:

Jamison Foser is, of course, correct that the 100,000 people who apparently spent yesterday teabagging is a pretty pathetic turnout.  During the Bush Administration, a hundred thousand or more people would routinely show up at the same spot for a peace rally in Washington or New York or San Francisco, but the teabaggers only had to trip out their doors to find a teabagging session in their hometown.  Plus, I’ll note, the teabaggers had a pretty powerful ally on their side, FOX News, while the peace rally organizers never had a major media network working for them—their outreach was conducted the old fashioned way, through grassroots organizing.

Indeed, in a country of 300 million people, if a major media station makes it their mission to rally people to your cause, and you are they are still only able to gin up 100,000 people, that speaks more to just how far on the fringe you are.  I’m certain that, armed with that kind of coverage, the American Communist Party or the Flat Earth Society or NAMBLA could also scare up 100,000 supporters.  That doesn’t make them anything other than a group of radicals whose dangerousness is thankfully mitigated by the fact that their numbers are so small.

UPDATE: Nate Silver puts the number of teabaggers at closer to 250,000, which is probably more than NAMBLA could deliver, but less than the single-site attendance of many Bush-era antiwar protests.  Still a pretty pathetic turnout when you consider that FOX News was running the teabaggers’ outreach campaign.


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