Framing the Dialogue

Sesame Street T.E.A. Party Failure

Sesame Street premiered in 1969 and is the longest running series nearing its fortieth anniversary.  Growing up in the city and long before cable, the PBS broadcast did not really reach my family so Sesame Street was not a big part of my formative years.  I do, however, remember watching the show with my children as they grew up. 

One of my favorite characters is Count von Count or The Count.  If you are not familiar with the show The Count Loves to count.  Think of Bela Lugosi made out of felt and, of course, less scary and counting every chance he gets.  Many of our nation’s young folk learned to count with The County, but I noticed a rather glaring error in many main stream (drive by) media outlets when they gave estimates of the number of anti-tax protesters that converged on Washington D.C. this past Saturday.

The 9/12 Project started by Glen Beck and others has been brewing for many months culminating in this planned march on Washington.  The following are some of the media estimates of the size of the crowds attending:

  • The Washington Times: “Tens of thousands of conservative “tea party” protesters brought their angry grass-roots movement to the steps of the Capitol on Saturday in a muscular political demonstration against big government spending, budget deficits, taxes and President Obama’s sweeping health care plan.”  [the use of muscular was interesting]
  • CBS News [Associated Press Story]: “Tens of thousands of protesters fed up with government spending marched to the U.S. Capitol on Saturday, showing their disdain for the president’s health care plan with slogans such as “Obamacare makes me sick” and “I’m not your ATM.”
  • ABC News“ reported an approximate figure of 60,000 to 70,000 protesters, attributed to the Washington, D.C., fire department. In its reports, ABC News Radio described the crowd as “tens of thousands.”  [the story was how ABC was falsely accused of using the higher figure]

The “tens of thousand” was the general drift of the American media, though mistrust of MSM estimates of conservative events is common.  Some estimates by organizers put the number at over a million participants.  The best number may have come from…Britain.  UK Telegraph put attendance at 75,000 or higher. 

"One, two, three...there are tens of thousands of protesters.

One, two, three...there are tens of thousands of protesters.

For some reason, D.C. officials did not provide an official estimate.  My guess not having been there and only seeing images on the Internet, I would WAG (Wild A** Guess) would be at over 100 thousand people.  The basis of my estimate that the highly Democrat area of Pittsburgh managed to send 30 buses to the festivities.  At forty souls per bus, that is nearly 1000 from one city.

This does not explain the MSM estimates.  My theory is that they all use the same source for their information and all got the same memo from the same person who obviously learned to count from television.  Rather than learning from Count von Count I believe that this person learned to count from the Tootsie Roll Owl and could not count past three.
It is just a theory at this point.  It will be interesting to see the estimates of the protesters who converge on Pittsburgh for the G20 Summit next week.
912 tea party

View more photographs at this link.

Update September 21, 2009:  As the weeks pass since the Septbember 12, 2009 T.E.A. party protests in Washington D.C. others have compiled more comprehensive accounting of the number of people attending.  It has become apparent that the main stream media has perpetrated a fraud in vastly underestimating the number of peaceful protesters converging on Washington a little over a week ago.   One has to ask why?

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