Tea Party Was Created by Big Tobacco and Billionaire Koch Brothers (H/T – Ruf)

I know I have wrote about the formation of the Tea Party in the past and their connection to the Koch Brothers, but this is a new revelation. Birds of a feather, I guess;

A new academic study confirms that front groups with longstanding ties to the tobacco industry and the billionaire Koch brothers planned the formation of the Tea Partymovement more than a decade before it exploded onto the U.S. political scene.

Far from a genuine grassroots uprising, this astroturf effort was curated by wealthy industrialists years in advance. Many of the anti-science operatives who defended cigarettes are currently deploying their tobacco-inspired playbook internationally to evade accountability for the fossil fuel industry’s role in driving climate disruption.

The study, funded by the National Cancer Institute of the National Institute of Health, traces the roots of the Tea Party’s anti-tax movement back to the early 1980s when tobacco companies began to invest in third party groups to fight excise taxes on cigarettes, as well as health studies finding a link between cancer and secondhand cigarette smoke.



10 comments ↓

#1 pathloss on 02.15.13 at 11:41 am

There’s another party of Betty Paige fans. So far they only piss off the mayor once in awhile. They’ll gain strength when elephants fly from South Dakota.

#2 pathloss on 02.15.13 at 11:45 am

Need liquor and strippers. Smoke and ‘Koch’ is not enough for a good party.

#3 PrairieLady on 02.15.13 at 12:24 pm

Pathloss, If you had gone to their convention, you could have found an abundance of the liquor, strippers, and prostitutes. I am sure there were many good ol’ boys having a good party. (You are funny!)

#4 OleSlewFoot on 02.15.13 at 4:28 pm

I guess I wonder why the NCI/NIH sees fit to spend US taxpayer money at this time to study this historical fact that has no bearing on solving any smoking issues or our debt problem.

Back in the ’80’s the “Tea Party” was really a liberatarian based group and opposition to cigarette taxes and one’s freedom to smoke was part of a larger platform of libertairian based ideas of freedom. Koch ran on the Libertarian Party ticket back then.

It does not closely resemble the Tea Party of the 21st century.

#5 Winston on 02.15.13 at 4:39 pm

“Follow the smoke ….”

#6 rufusx on 02.16.13 at 2:52 am

Original TEA party (1770’s style) was in protest of tax breaks for coporations (East India Company) – which gave them an unfair advantage over small local businesses. They wanted tax increases on the wealthy coporations. What the heck does the current TEA party philosophy have to do with that? It is EXACTLY the opposite.

#7 OleSlewFoot on 02.16.13 at 9:01 am

@rufusx – EIC had a monopoly because of British government intervention and taxes/regulations to give them an advantage, which drove others out of business. The Boston Tea Party was a protest of British “taxation without representation”. I believe the modern tea party is also against more government regulations, taxes and intervention.

#8 Testor15 on 02.16.13 at 9:31 am

The difference between the 2 “tea party” movements stems from who organized and financed them.

#9 Detroit Lewis on 02.16.13 at 11:56 am

Like Winston said, “Follow the smoke”

#10 rufusx on 02.16.13 at 9:15 pm

Slew – the protest was against tax BREAKS for EIC that the smaller IMPORTERS of TEA in Boston didn’t get – which put THEM at a competitive disadvantage. Think BIG COAL/BIG OIL tax breaks that allow them to out compete the smaller alt. energy businesses. You migtht also tyink about the “Large Enterprise” incentive programs so favored by the likes of our esteemed Repub establishment government in SD that create unfair competitive advantages for out-of-state businesses vs. SD’s home-grown enterprises. The original TEA party protestors were opposed to CORPORATE FAVORITISM by government. It can’t be twisted from thsat into some “lower taxes for everybody – small government mularkey. NOT what it was all about.