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#ResistTrump today by learning from the Tea Party how to put politicians on the defensive

The Tea Party: Some of their tactics are worth emulating. Their signs, not so much

The Tea Party movement, which rose up in the early years of the Obama presidency to oppose pretty much everything he stood for, was a reactionary, often-embarrassing political spectacle.

But as reactionary, often-embarrassing political spectacles go, it was a pretty effective one. Tea Partiers may have had trouble spelling their slogans correctly, but they managed to block a lot of Obama’s progressive agenda.

Now a group of former congressional staffers with years of experience fighting against the Tea Party are urging fellow progressives to adopt some of that group’s most effective tactics to thwart the incoming Trump regime. In an already much-discussed document called Indivisible: A Practical Guide for Resisting the Trump Agenda, these activists urge Trump opponents to

stand indivisibly opposed to Trump and the members of Congress (MoCs) who would do his bidding. Together, we have the power to resist — and we have the power to win.

We know this because we’ve seen it before. The authors of this guide are former congressional staffers who witnessed the rise of the Tea Party. We saw these activists take on a popular president with a mandate for change and a supermajority in Congress. We saw them organize locally and convince their own MoCs to reject President Obama’s agenda. Their ideas were wrong, cruel, and tinged with racism— and they won.

We believe that protecting our values, our neighbors, and ourselves will require mounting a similar resistance to the Trump agenda — but a resistance built on the values of inclusion, tolerance, and fairness. Trump is not popular. He does not have a mandate. He does not have large congressional majorities. If a small minority in the Tea Party can stop President Obama, then we the majority can stop a petty tyrant named Trump.

One of the great strengths of the Tea Party, the Indivisible authors note, is that it offered unified opposition to virtually everything Obama and his allies stood for — and punished those Republicans who wavered in the anti-Obama crusade.

The Tea Party focused on saying NO to Members of Congress (MoCs) on their home turf. While the Tea Party activists were united by a core set of shared beliefs, they actively avoided developing their own policy agenda. Instead, they had an extraordinary clarity of purpose, united in opposition to President Obama. They didn’t accept concessions and treated weak Republicans as traitors.

Local Tea Party groups focused their attention on their local representatives in Congress, and made life uncomfortable for those Republicans who weren’t willing to be “their voice of opposition on Capitol Hill.” In doing so, they garnered political influence out of proportion to their relatively small numbers.

By adopting a similar strategy, Indivisible argues, the anti-Trump movement could

Stall the Trump agenda by forcing [MoCs] to redirect energy away from their priorities. Congressional offices have limited time and limited people. A day that they spend worrying about you is a day that they’re not ending Medicare, privatizing public schools, or preparing a Muslim registry.

Sap Representatives’ will to support or drive reactionary change. If you do this right, you will have an outsized impact. Every time your MoC signs on to a bill, takes a position, or makes a statement, a little part of his or her mind will be thinking: “How am I going to explain this to the angry constituents who keep showing up at my events and demanding answers?”

Reaffirm the illegitimacy of the Trump agenda. The hard truth is that Trump, McConnell, and Ryan will have the votes to cause some damage. But by objecting as loudly and powerfully as possible, and by centering the voices of those who are most affected by their agenda, you can ensure that people understand exactly how bad these laws are from the very start – priming the ground for the 2018 midterms and their repeal when Democrats retake power.

Indivisible runs through these lessons from the Tea Party fairly quickly, and follows them up with a good deal of very practical advice on how to best get the attention of local MoC’s — from organized phone calling to office sit-ins.

The guide is free. I think it will prove invaluable to anti-Trump activists over the next several years.

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Schnookums Von Fancypants, Purveyor of Misandrist Klondike Bars
Schnookums Von Fancypants, Purveyor of Misandrist Klondike Bars
3 years ago

@WWTH

If it wasn’t for Rarity, this generation might have never learned what a fainting couch is. MLP: FiM is fun AND educational!

Michael Brew
Michael Brew
3 years ago

I could honestly point to favorite traits in all of them. I agree that Rarity is awesome because she’s a feminine character that is treated as competent, in universe (and I hate it when my fellow Bronies do characterize her as a stuck up bimbo because I know they see femininity paired with confidence and that’s just the first character trope that pops up). As an artist I also identify with her a lot, though I’m definitely a nerdy bookworm like Twilight. RD used to be my fave, but that’s probably because I’m personally attracted to masculine personalities in women. I do like Pinkie for her jokes, of course, and I can relate to Flutters’ social anxiety (but mine is still probably more like Rarity’s and Rainbow’s). As far as nonpony main characters, I do like Spike a lot, too, when he’s written more like his Season 1&2 self rather than the weird one-episode personality changes he comes down with in recent seasons.

Also sorry/not sorry for derailing this into a pony thread.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

Pony derailing happens a lot here. In fact, it was the WHTM hive mind that caused me to even start watching the show this year.

Moocow
3 years ago

@WWTH

Not that there’s anything wrong with being a tomboy!

In the same vein I should specify that I find nothing wrong with a character who adheres to gender stereotypes!

Whilst I don’t identify with her as much as Pinkie Pie, I absolutely love her character for the reasons you just described. So often, stereotypically ‘feminine’ characters are just self-absorbed and shallow (in other words, written mostly by men).

Also, her fainting couch never gets old.

http://orig00.deviantart.net/0ced/f/2011/313/1/d/1dd5fe1813e9b6034bf78c6551465fa9-d4fmyop.jpg

Sorry, fainting chaise longue!

After just playing Pokemon Sun/Moon (WARNING: PLOT SPOILERS), I feel similarly about Lillie. Maybe not as good of a portrayal (she does get captured by the antagonists), but she’s a very stereotypical ‘girly’ character. Despite traveling with a Pokemon, she’s a more interested in fashion and is a pacifist and hates seeing Pokemon get hurt and couldn’t even watch Pokemon fight. None of those things are considered ‘bad’; just who she is. As she develops over the course of the game, at no point does she ‘suddenly decide to become a trainer’ or abandon her beliefs and the friends she meets along her journey respect her for her choosing her own path. By the end she’s still a pacifist who hates seeing Pokemon get hurt and still has no interest in being a trainer (good god, I’ve never felt so teary-eyed while receiving the game’s legendary) but is now capable of standing up for herself!

Michael Brew
Michael Brew
3 years ago

Ah, ah, chaise longue. Must be proper about this.

Falconer
Falconer
3 years ago

I foresee a lot of ponies in my future. My kids haven’t yet found Dora though, so it’ll be a while before they fall to arguing over who is best pony.

We’ve been trying them on various movies, and we discovered that S just does not like tension. Like, there’s the whole menacing sequence in Disney’s Cinderella where Lady Tremaine climbs the tower steps and locks Cinderella in her room. S flat-out refuses to watch that, or the cat chase the mice.

Also, she does not like Totoros at all.

Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
3 years ago

@Preux

I think that particular tactic might be too divisive and actively harmful towards those who are most affected by Trump’s policies

comment image
Those least able to put in the work are always the ones most expected to do so. Every time. We need to resist that tooth and nail

Also, that gif applies to the whole rest of both comments too 🙂

Tovius
Tovius
3 years ago

@ Michael Brew

Wow, you got a post stuck to the bottom three pages in a row. The Mammoth gods must really hate you.

Handsome (Punkle Stan) Jack

Rainbow Dash is awesome. I always have a fondness for characters that exhibit traits or do activities that are stereotypically considered “the other gender”; it’s refreshing and helps break down oppressive societal assumptions about gender. She’s fierce, competitive and extremely determined.

Yes.

And it’s funny that you mention her in the same breath as Pinkie Pie because my favorite pony is Pinkie Pie

Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash are best ponies.

That’s often the only time it’s socially acceptable for men to like a female character that isn’t there to be a sex object. I like that Rarity has a lot of female coded traits but isn’t treated like a bimbo or a bitch.

I do like Rarity too…it’s just, you know, people are always on about Fluttershy or Rarity. People LIKE Rainbow Dash and Pinkie Pie, but they never seem to be a favorite.

(Also I was gonna say “they’re all ponies, none of them are sex objects” but then I remembered this is the internet.)

Paradoxical Intention - Resident Cheeseburger Slut

Handsome (Punkle Stan) Jack | December 30, 2016 at 4:06 pm
Why is it always Fluttershy or Rarity? Why never Rainbow Dash and Pinkie Pie?

Because they’re on all the merchandise and the other ponies need some love, Hasbro.

I ain’t even joking, I can hardly find any Rarity merchandise to save my life, but PINKIE PIES AND RAINBOW DASHES EVERYWHERE ON EVERYTHING.

As for Rarity (the best pony): Art of the Dress and A Dog and Pony Show were what made her my favorite.

Art of the Dress because I related so hard to that as a designer (and it’s hella catchy), and A Dog and Pony Show because it really subverted the Damsel in Distress trope and rather than have it to where Rarity overpowered her captors, she just outsmarted them in her own way by exaggerating her own traits.

Ooglyboggles
Ooglyboggles
3 years ago

Edit: Sun Moon
Honestly when Lillie was able to stand up to her mother, that was the moment that made me say “yep this is the best pokemon story in the games.”

On a light/dark note if you ever become masochistic enough to try the battle tree, you’re going to find a bit of dark humor in it.

“When I’m tired and go home, only pokeon make me welcome in that dark room.” After you beat said trainer “I’m pokemon dependent. But even so, it’s better than being alone.”

PaganReader
3 years ago

Did you insult the Mammoth God’s mother or something, Micheal? You’re drifting on this page too. Dang.

Kat
Kat
3 years ago

More ammunition against Trump

Donald Trump Is Unpopular, and So Is the GOP’s Agenda
How can Democrats capitalize?

Trump is historically unpopular for an incoming president and shows no signs of improving. This, coupled with his substantial loss in the national popular vote, is a potent vulnerability. Democrats can credibly say that Trump lacks the “will of the people.” They can rebuff charges of obstructionism, and they can say, with little exaggeration, that the public is on their side.

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/politics/2016/12/donald_trump_is_unpopular_and_so_is_the_gop_agenda.html

Moocow
3 years ago

@Pony derail

It’s hardly the first time and it certainly won’t be the last. Ultimately I also can see traits in each character that I enjoy or empathize with. Each pony has clear strengths and weaknesses but are too complex to fit into a single stereotype (Pinkie Pie isn’t just an overenthusiastic spaz, Fluttershy isn’t just a shy wallflower). If there’s one pony who gets overshadowed by the rest I think it would be Applejack, I hear about her the less (and she gets kinda upstaged by Applebloom)

Overall, I just love that Lauren Faust is an incredible writer, proving to Hasbro and the world that a giiiiiiiirly show can be awesome and loved by all.

@Ooglyboggles

Honestly when Lillie was able to stand up to her mother, that was the moment that made me say “yep this is the best pokemon story in the games.”

(WARNING: Pokemon Sun/Moon spoilers continue)

“we’re not objects for you to own!” OMG yes, Lillie’s greatest moment… until she decides to part ways with Nebby. Oh god, that was beautiful. Pokemon is at it’s best when depicting that the love between humans and Pokemon. I was blown away by this experience and was legitimately sad when it was over. Every character is well justified, nobody is ‘evil for the sake of evil’, there are some great twists.

On a light/dark note if you ever become masochistic enough to try the battle tree, you’re going to find a bit of dark humor in it.

Hehe, I got myself plenty acquainted there… I needed 48 BP for the Destiny Knot. I think my best streak was 9 before I lost to a goddamn trick room team! My most successful team was Stealth Rock Lycanroc, Sword Dance Leafeon and Alolan Marowak (I eventually got enough and now I have my first perfect 6 IV Pokemon! A lovely Impish Skarmory!)

the dialog is pretty funny (preschooler declares “magical girl here to punish you!”) but I didn’t ever see this one:

“When I’m tired and go home, only pokeon make me welcome in that dark room.” After you beat said trainer “I’m pokemon dependent. But even so, it’s better than being alone.”

Dang. Seems they really put a lot of effort in the post-game!

Original Pokemon Blue was the game that made me fall in love with video games, and here I am 20 years later still amazed by the series can do.

Michael Brew
Michael Brew
3 years ago

Ah, Blue was my first. Lost it on the train but Grandma Suki totes delivered with a Gameboy Color and Pokémon Yellow. Also got Silver when it came out. Got all the way to fighting Red, but didn’t play again until I got Black before I deployed to the ‘Stan. Sun &a Moon definitely sound fresh, though, and my nostalgic self is screaming at me to finally break down for a 3DS and buy the game.

As far as the Mane 6 go, I remember early on making a general chart of how to categorize them. The basic breakdown was masculine/androgynous/feminine and extrovert/introvert. Each one could basically be matched to a different coordinate with RD – PP – Ra in E from M to F and then AJ – TS – FS for I. Also had fun figuring out how literally every member was a foil for the other in some way, being similar in one way but expressing opposite traits in another. Guess that’s why I ended up writing more MLP fanfic while in a literal war zone than when I was a 13 year old Ranma 1/2 fanboy.