San Marcos Mercury | Local News from San Marcos and Hays County, Texas
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April 22nd, 2009
Letter to the Editor: We stood up on tax day

To the Editor:

Every April 15, we the people pay taxes, and the Federal Reserve, which prints our money, does not submit itself to a similar audit.

On April 15 of this year, over 150 people, actually citizens, protested this inequity, and the out of control spending that has gone unchallenged for multiple administrations, both Democratic and Republican.

It was not paid for by any organization, and the 100 DVDs that were passed out came from my own earnings from two food service jobs.

This was a grassroots protest that crossed aisles and ideology. We the people expressed out anger and our desire for accountability. Time will tell if our leadership in Washington D.C. has heard our cries.

Stephen Sheffall
San Marcos

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0 thoughts on “Letter to the Editor: We stood up on tax day

  1. Thank you Stephan for your help in working with these many people who came to the TEA party on the square.

    These are REAL grassroots people who are getting active in their community for a POSITIVE CHANGE.

    The county was afraid of people exercising their first amendment rights, and many people came to the rally in DEFENSE of these groups. The County Commissioners court has now tasked the attorney with preparing new guidelines for all groups. I am sure our founding fathers, as well as Jack Hays, would not have stood for Liability Insurance getting in the way of responsible citizens speaking their mind in a public square.

    I hope some of the citizens in the community will join in your Letters for Liberty Campaign, and write to our local elected officials, thanking them for adressing the issues that were raised on the day of the TEA party with auditing where the bailout money has gone, and allowing public speech at the Courthouse.

  2. I hesitate to support these events due to the big business interests in the organizing think tanks like FreedomWorks (formally Citizens for a Sound Economy), the CATO institute, and the Koch family.
    When I first was informed of their lobbying politicians and talk show hosts, and creating web sites for the “unplanned simultaneous tea party events,” I was concerned because of something CSE did a while back. The current Chairman of FreedomWorks began CSE and is responsible for financing a seemingly (through effort similar to the tea party tactic) grassroots campaign against Everglades restoration with $700,000 from Florida’s three biggest sugar growers and also waging a (seemingly) grassroots campaign against higher cigarette taxes with more than a million dollars from Philip Morris. Because it’s a 501(c)3 they aren’t required to publish the names of donators, but Exxon and GM have also been closely linked to the company. The right-wing, corporate-backed CATO institute (co-founded by Charles Koch) has recently been tied to organizing, providing information and web design. One of the major funders of these thinktanks is the Koch family. Charles and David Koch are head of the the largest private corporation (Koch Industries) in America whose only philanthropic donations are to right-wing thinktanks. They were behind much of the thinktank support for the pro-free trade, anti-tax NAFTA passage after having purchased 9,271 miles of natural gas pipelines to Mexico.

    Now, all of these things are not shocking, and not even necessarily inappropriate. All movements, whether it’s for free healthcare or against abortion are usually supported by corporate entities or wealthy citizens. You said you paid for the materials for your tea party, and that’s fantastic. That spirit of activism is vital to a functioning republic. However, with so much interest from (and the above is hardly a complete glimpse into corporate contributions) corporations who rarely act in the interest of the citizens, other than provide minimum wage jobs to the majority, I’m still not convinced of the “for the people” aspect of these tea party events. Even though you don’t have political affiliation, the consequences of waging a “grassroots” battle that has so much profit interest for corporations are never in favor of the average person.

  3. Exactly! These so-called tea parties would not have happened without the organizations that were behind them. I’m okay with people believing in whatever they want, but I get worried when they are in denial about how these events came about. It just seems a bit like brainwashing… repeat it often enough, and it becomes truth. No. It doesn’t. Facts are facts.

    No doubt the websites are now telling people to follow-up with a letter writing campaign as suggested by Roark and executed by Sheffall.

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