'Instant Tea Party' protests on tax day

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Tea Party movement advocates took to the streets on tax day last week, holding up signs toward drivers on East Commerce Street near the Post Office where income tax returns were being mailed.

"Taxed Enough Already?" is what the acronym Tea stands for and Lewisburg's best-known Tea Party advocate, Sherry Ferguson, dubbed Thursday's public exercise of free speech as an "Instant Tea Party," because it was assembled quickly.

"It's still Tea," said Wayne Coomes, master of ceremonies at Republican events, a former member of the city's Police Advisory Board, former chief of police and still a U.S. Marine at heart.

Anita Hulshof of Sheppard Branch Road was telling motorists, "If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention."

Big media and the prospect of a Value-Added Tax (VAT) were targets of Sally Evans' protest.

"I don't like VAT taxes," the Lake Hill Drive resident said.

VAT started in Europe. Depending on how it's applied, it might tax raw materials used by manufacturers. Or, VAT is charged on the increased value of raw materials made into something for sale. Clay baked, as bricks, bowls or figurines might be taxed on the greater value of clay after it's a retail product. There is no VAT in the U.S., but it was put "on the table" last year by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, according to Wikipedia, an Internet-based encyclopedia.

"Value Added Taxes are coming next," according to the Instant TEA Party campaign.

"If you're not on the computer (with Internet connection), you won't know what's going on," Evans replied when asked about her assertion: "The government is not listening to the people. The government isn't even informing the newspapers."

She named Nashville's morning daily paper and said, "There's too much government control."

Scott Stinson of Mariann Street spoke with the women who were waiving their signs in front of a building constructed as a gas station. Now, it's a used car lot across the street from a convenience store.

"It's kind of alarming," Stinson said that day.

Three days later, he commented about the small, legal and well-behaved demonstration and the Tea Party advocates' message.

"It's a good thing," Stinson said. "I'm proud that we have patriots who are willing to stand up."

They asked him to sign a petition, but he'd not done so, mainly because he "wasn't given contact information" about what to do next. Bit, he had read it "briefly" and concluded they want to audit congressmen.

The government should be audited "and we should stand up and demand to know what's going on," Stinson said.

An audit of the Federal Reserve Board was also advocated by the women at the Instant Tea Party.

The "Fed" is the institution to: be a clearinghouse for financial transactions between banks and governments; conduct America's monetary policy and credit conditions for jobs and control over inflation and interest rates; oversee banks' safety and financial stability; and maintain stability in the financial system.

Its creation was a response to the financial Panic of 1907. Its duties were increased after the Great Depression. "The Federal Reserve System is subject to the Administrative Procedure Act, and so is legally obligated to inform the public about its organization, procedures and rules," Wikipedia states.

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