…so people will know who you are.
Via Think Progress we have the Right-Wing Harassment Strategy that the Republicans are planning to use—are already using—in Town Hall meetings in order to disrupt and derail legitimate discussions. Their plan is to stop health-care reform. From a memo leaked from Freedomworks:
- Artificially Inflate Your Numbers: “Spread out in the hall and try to be in the front half. The objective is to put the Rep on the defensive with your questions and follow-up. The Rep should be made to feel that a majority, and if not, a significant portion of at least the audience, opposes the socialist agenda of Washington.”
- Be Disruptive Early And Often: “You need to rock-the-boat early in the Rep’s presentation, Watch for an opportunity to yell out and challenge the Rep’s statements early.”
- Try To “Rattle Him,” Not Have An Intelligent Debate: “The goal is to rattle him, get him off his prepared script and agenda. If he says something outrageous, stand up and shout out and sit right back down. Look for these opportunities before he even takes questions.”
It’s nice of them to put this in writing.
This puts me in mind of nothing so much as the “Brooks Brothers Riot” that stopped the recount in Florida back in 2000. It’s the same astroturf right-wing-spin-machine paid lobby nonsense that brought us the “birthers” and the “teabaggers.”
And it’s the same set of tactics that brought us Nazi Germany.
You can watch video of these people following their memo:
Recently, for instance, Sen. Arlen Specter held a town hall meeting with Kathleen Sebelius, the Health and Human Services secretary. In attempting to answer questions, they were shouted down by folks more interested in venting than discussing.
On the conservative FreedomWorks Web site, the display was headlined “Specter Gets Schooled.” Above the video of the event, the site says “… this is a must watch and a must emulate at town halls across the country over the next month.”