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THE TEA PARTY’S BUSY BREW

The tea party is preparing to celebrate its 5th anniversary, eager to recall and celebrate the day when a singular rant by CNBC correspondent Rick Santelli on Feb. 19, 2009, went up from the floor of the Chicago Board of Trade. At the height of President Obama’s mortgage bailout, he called for the formation of a new tea-party style revolution.

The Tea Party Patriots in fact, are planning a substantial gathering in the nation’s capital on Feb. 27, advising that the details are to come. The nation’s largest grass-roots collection of tea party groups is sure about their message, however.

“In five years, the tea party has transformed the public dialogue from a politically correct, complacent citizenry to a fierce fight for a return to limited government and our natural rights,” the organizers advise.

They plan to highlight successes, “orchestrated by ordinary citizens fighting for their right to be free,” and suggest that there are lawmakers waiting in the wings to make an appearance.

“We want to show our gratitude for both the grass-roots activists and strong elected representatives and let them know we have their backs,” the Patriots add.

WEEKEND REAL ESTATE

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SNOWDEN’S NOODLES

Little stray facts continue to emerge about NSA leaker Edward Snowden, most recently from one of his key advisers. That would be Ben Wizner, director of the ACLU’s speech, privacy and technology project. In an interview with RT America host Larry King on Thursday night, Mr. Wizner clarified the whistle blower’s cryptic, oft quoted “mission accomplished” phrase of recent days.

“What he meant by that is that his job is done. His job was to bring the public into the debate; to take these secret programs and bring them into the light of day. It’s our job to decide what we do with that information,” Mr. Wizner said. “He didn’t have any grandiose notion that he, himself, could change our society. What he wanted to do was put us in a position where we could decide what the consequences should be of these disclosures, that’s what he meant by ‘mission accomplished.’”

And a personal note: “Wherever he is in the world he is a citizen of the Internet, he is someone who doesn’t need much more than a laptop and some dry ramen noodles that you can buy at the store, and he’ll be fine whatever country he is in,” Mr. Wizner added.

POLL DU JOUR

74 percent of U.S. voters are dissatisfied with the way things are going in the nation today; 88 percent of Republicans and 50 percent of Democrats agree.

55 percent say that the Obama administration has not been competent in running the government; 86 percent of Republicans and 17 percent of Democrat agree.

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