I want to talk, today, about a problem that’s occurring across the country. I hear it in academia, in the media, pop culture, and especially in politics – and we find it at the local, state and especially the federal level. At times you could attribute it to being accidental, maybe they don’t really understand – but more times than not, its purposeful.
I spent time with Bill Whittle at the Americans For Prosperity Defending The Dream Summit in Orlando, FL at Universal Studios where we discussed several areas where the tea party and grassroots groups are making a mistake.
On Tuesday, May 28, 2013, I was honored to be invited as a guest on "On The Record" with Greta Van Susteren to talk about the DHS visiting and intimidating Tea Party events last week.
I mentioned during the interview that I believe there are multiple agencies involved just as Brandon Darby wrote in Breitbart.com on Catherine Engelbrecht's experiences with True The Vote as well as her personal family business. In the video below, she discusses what she's experienced on the Mike Huckabee show.
In addition, here is Representative Kevin Brady of Texas during the House Ways & Means Committee's time with Steven Miller of the IRS.
FOX 35 News Orlando For an agency of the federal government with over 100,000 agents tasked with enforcing over 70,000+ pages of confusing tax code, with an operating procedure that proclaims you're guilty until you prove your own innocence -- for them to profile and target organizations and individuals based on political ideology should disturb everyone!
With this scandal in mind, we should all be concerned about what will happen in 2014 when 17,000 more agents are hired to enforce the ObamaCare mandate.
Profiling & Targeting:
Unaware this new IRS policy was implemented throughout the country, a few of us in central Florida started an organization during the Fall of 2011. We correctly filed our Articles of Incorporation and sent our application to the IRS seeking 501(c)4 tax exempt status.
On July 27, 2012 we received a letter asking very detailed and peculiar questions.
On August 6, 2012, the gentleman listed as Chairman of the organization received notice from the IRS of an upcoming audit of his personal tax returns.
Due to the ongoing audit and the privacy of the other board members, I will not be sharing the name of the organization nor the other names of those involved at this time. Moods and approaches to this issue may change, however, so please stay tuned for updates.
On the letter dated July 27, 2012, each question, in and of itself, didn't seem too over-burdensome. For me, it was the level of detail they requested as well as the nature of the questions that raised suspicion. For the Waco Tea Party, however, who published their letter from the IRS on Foxnews.com, the sheer volume was a bully tactic which typifies the well-earned connotation, "Chicago-style thug politics".
Question #1 on our letter was very strange as they provided printed copies of our website that was in development and not even available on our official domain. Our web host placed the website's input template on a development server for updating with a very long and purposefully confusing address. Again, we had not moved this site to our official public domain address, nor used the site for any public purposes. The IRS found our development site, printed it and included it in our file.
In addition, they provided printed copies of a website that I used for a radio show 3 years prior that had nothing to do with this new organization.
Feel free to take a moment and re-read the previous sentence.
Notice their approach with the first question on our IRS letter. "If they are not yours, please explain". Again, this is the standard operating procedure. The IRS requires you to prove something is not the case as opposed to the burden of proof being on the "prosecutor". Question #5 asked why I was chosen as the Executive Director, who made the decision and what other candidates were considered. They also asked for meeting minutes for all the discussions.
What business is it of the IRS to know how decisions are made and what options our organization faced at the time? Again, this is an absolute abuse of power. Unfortunately, due to the high cost of compliance, we ended our efforts to form this organization.
Additional News Stories:
We have met with our Congressman, Dan Webster, and provided him copies of the IRS letter and he is looking to get involved. http://www.myfoxorlando.com/story/22240874/fla-congressman-to-press-irs-for-answers-over-targeting-tea-party-groups
Stay tuned, however, as we've now learned this was a coordinated policy of the IRS across the country. As a result, our resolve has strengthened. Please subscribe HERE for updates to our efforts.
On Saturday, April 21, 2012, I featured Ron McCoy and Clyde Fabretti as local "Hero's of the Tea Party" as they, along with Laura McCoy (Ron's wonderful wife) started the West Orlando Tea Party.
Last week, the House of Representatives and Senate passed the 2011 Budget "Out of" Control "Debt" Act, in another seemingly disappointing act by Congress to kick the can down the road in order to "fight another day", as they say. Personally, I'm confused as to why the following illustration is difficult to understand:
Let's say I earn a salary of $40,000 per year. One would think that my annual budget, as a result, is $40,000. Instead, however, I follow our federal government's example and plan to spend $70,000 per year--resulting in an annual deficit of $30,000. After doing this several years in a row, I realize this path is completely unsustainable and now I'm determined to cut spending. As a result, as I earn a salary of $40,000 once again and I "make the tough choice" and use a "balanced approach" to cut my budget to $69,000 instead of $70,000. All is good in the world and my credit rating should be just fine.
Congress calls this a savings of $1,000 and expects to get re-elected.
I'm not an extremist, I just use extreme common sense.
As we know, there were quite a few representatives in this debate, unfortunately, that surprisingly supported increasing our National Debt one more time and in a big way. One of them was Congressman Allen West from Florida who has done an outstanding job taking on the progressive left. His direct dealings with Congresswoman Debbie WasserName Schultz (who also voted with West in increasing our national debt) has certainly been inspirational in a town overflowing with political correctness.
As several tea party leaders turned on Allen West this past week for his disappointing vote, many were quick to defend him. In a statement by one leader in Florida, he was concerned that we appeared "inconsistent". At one point, he argued, we loved Governor Rick Scott's stances on Florida's budget but we were quick to point out our frustration with his refusal or inability to block SunRail. We expressed appreciation for Allen West's commanding rhetoric in speeches but many jumped on him for his vote to increase our nation's debt. To this particular tea party leader, we seemed inconsistent. To me, it's a question of where our loyalties lie.
Below are excerpts from an email I sent to several tea party leaders around the country following the disappointing vote that lead to our national debt increasing and our AAA rating being downgraded:
IMHO, we have to remember where our loyalties lie. We are loyal to our principles and values and with that comes consistency that cannot be shaken. We are not “yes men” to any politician and we cannot appear to sway with the blowing wind of the votes of politicians.
It’s always dangerous to fully attach ourselves to Humans. We are flawed beasts!!
“We’re Jeffersonians!”. Uh, he owned slaves. “We’re Reaganites!”. Uh, he approved amnesty. Damn! “We believe in Liberty!” Well, how can you argue with that without supporting Tyranny?
Is Allen West a breath of fresh air in a town that reeks with hypocrisy and wickedness? Absolutely!
Are we proud to call him friend when he stands up for our principles and values and takes it right to our progressive enemies like WasserName?? You know it!!
Does that mean we turn a blind eye when for whatever strategic reason he doesn’t stand up to “leadership” and falls for and delivers manufactured talking points like “deadline” and “default” and “crisis” and “equal cuts for every dollar increase in the debt” (which we know is a farce) and takes a vote that sinks us further and further into debt without standing up to leadership for taking us down such an unnecessary path? No. We don’t turn a blind eye.
Yes, I agree, we shouldn’t “eat our own”, but he needs to know that we’re disappointed. He needs to know that we appreciate it when he stands up and uses his platform to advance our principles and values, but when he gets in line and doesn’t stand up, he needs to know we’re hurt by that.
We cannot fall for the rhetoric they’ve put forth in this “debate”! We demand better! It’s an insult to our intelligence to try and sell this pile by talking about 10 year budgets. We know the truth! We know how this works now. We need them to ratchet up the “truth” meter and ease up on the ignorant-electorate rhetoric and start talking seriously. I had the same conversation with Congressman Webster and Adams this weekend and again last night. We The People are ready for the painful truth of what’s really going on and while we’re out there educating the electorate on the real numbers, on the real impact of mountains of debt, we expect our politicians to just do the right thing.
We didn’t hire these people last year to play it safe and wade it out and just make sure they don’t shake things up too much so they can get re-elected next year. We hired them to do the right thing right now, take a bullet for the cause, make tough choices, face the painful truth and WE will worry about who gets elected next year.
We can’t just kick the can down the road. We can’t just hope for some day one day maybe there will be a perfect scenario when we have the right number of people in the right spots in government and finally on the right day we’ll then begin dismantling the beast and eventually start doing what’s right. THAT’s the mentality we’ve been fighting. There is no perfect day. There is not a perfect utopian time to start doing the right thing. It’s right now, it’s every single day and it happens with every single vote. Our beloved country doesn’t have time to wait for that day!!
So, does any of that mean we threaten them with a primary challenger? Of course not. It just means we need to talk to them about getting real with the American people, about leaving the tired talking points behind and just telling us the truth. Sandy explained to me her strategic reasons and fear last night about why she voted the way she did. To her, it made sense. I believe she’s in line with our principles and values, but she had some concerns that others didn’t seem to have. Does that mean we’re going to primary her? No, and I told her that. It did take me a while with her to let her know that we’re not falling for the rhetoric of 10 year budgets and “crisis” and “a dollar cut for every dollar increased in debt” and I told her my concerns with this version of the BBA and especially my concerns with “leadership” negotiating away any teeth it has. I told her we’ve had enough of the rhetoric and talking points and she understands. I completely appreciated her being direct and spending so much time explaining her reasoning and I told her that I wish she was louder and stood up to leadership with the path they took everyone down. Nevertheless, we’ll be setting up a meeting with grassroots leaders later this week with her when she gets back.
Bottom line, we must remain loyal to our principles and values and not turn a blind eye when someone disappoints us. That doesn’t mean we get emotional like many have and threaten this or that. It just means we need to let them know we’re disappointed and we expect a greater level of honesty and direct discussion. No more fluffy talking points. We demand Honesty and the Painful truth. And doing the right thing must occur every day.
So when you're voting with Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid in opposition to Senator's Rand Paul, Mike Lee, Jim DeMint and Marco Rubio--who is being inconsistent and on what side do your loyalties lie?
On February 27th, 2011, the nationwide Tea Party movement was born. As most of us recall, Rick Santelli ranted on Thursday, February 19th, 2009 from the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange about the latest bailout. That weekend, a handful of patriots gathered on a conference call arranged by Christina Botteri and Michael Patrick Leahy (TCOT Founder), to begin planning simultaneous tea parties in cities across the country.
On Tuesday, February 15th, 2011, I was invited as the keynote speaker at the newly formed Eastern Orlando Tea Party kickoff meeting. Many of the volunteers that have been engaged in the tea party movement for some time decided to form a group on the east side of Orlando and I could not be more proud of them.
Florida Governor Rick Scott announced he'll be hosting a Twitter Town Hall on Thursday, January 20th, 2010 at 7pm, as tweeted from his twitter account Wednesday evening:
Join me for a Twitter Town Hall tomorrow night at 7pm. Send Q's to @FLGovScott, use #flgov. I will answer as many Q's as I can.
Today I'm working with great patriots around the state of Florida that are members of the Florida Liberty Alliance and the Sons & Daughters of Liberty group that's comprised of tea party, 9/12 and patriot group leaders in ensuring we're able to drive the discussion during the town hall.
To monitor the townhall discussion, search for the hashtag #flgov or use this link: http://twitter.com/#!/search/%23flgov