“I’M MAD AS HELL AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE!”
That angry message in bold typeface; the glaring face of a retiree named Jack Gargan; his Jeffersonian list of grievances against Congress — it was all so familiar as I unrolled the poster, a relic from my childhood and the tea party’s ancestry.
Twenty years ago, Gargan used a series of newspaper ads to start a grassroots movement: T.H.R.O., or Throw the Hypocritical Rascals Out. I remember the bumper sticker on my dad’s Buick LeSabre, the related parody from Fox 97’s Shower Stall Singers: “(Those Congress Checks Are Bouncing Like a) Red Rubber Ball.”
I came across a poster print of the ad while helping my parents move houses recently. Reading the list of indictments Gargan made against Washington, I could only reflect that the tea party came into being because so little has changed:
“I’M APPALLED,” he wrote, “that Congress continues to hock the future of our children and grandchildren. Our