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Tea Party Poopers

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This week's poll from the Lester & Charlie Institute of Forward Thinking:

Gun sales have spiked since Obama's re-election. Petitions for secession have appeared in all 50 states. Sarah Palin is tweeting like crazy. Citizens with big guns are angry and they're itching for a fight. Is your government ready?

You'll be glad to know it is!

See, a "thought exercise" described in an article published by the non-profit Small Wars Journal (co-written by a retired Army colonel and a Civil War historian) tries to figure out what the federal government should do if, say, the frustrated Tea Party gets a little too caffeinated and forgets that their muskets and tricorne hats are supposed to be props.

What really scares the authors is the possibility that an armed teabagging rebellion wouldn't stand a chance of being dunked by local law enforcement -- because the locals would be too sympathetic to the rebels. Yes, it may sound paranoid. But it turns out that the U.S. Army's operating concept for 2016 to 2028 considers a threat by "radical U.S. citizens operating domestically and abroad" to be highly likely.

Conservatives were outraged that anyone was even considering such a scenario. The Washington Times called it "cartoonish" and "farcical."

We're not so sure. After all, just two years ago in her bid for the U.S. Senate, Nevada Republican Sharron Angle threatened that her criminally insane supporters would resort to "Second Amendment remedies" if the GOP didn't get its way. True, she lost. But not without getting 45 percent of the vote. And we're pretty sure that her 45 percent own a lot of guns.

Have we been watching too many episodes of Homeland? Maybe. But the Small Wars article is pretty startling, talking about how preparations must begin now if we're ever to deal with domestic insurrection -- detailing how carefully the U.S. military would have to tread to stay within the law. Any intel collected against the rebels would have to be destroyed within 90 days. Court orders would have to be obtained before any eavesdropping. This wouldn't be your regular kind of war. You know, the ones we just watch on TV and the soldiers come home, we toss and Oscar at Kathryn Bigelow and then pretend the whole thing never happened.

Still, we're wondering if the military isn't making a Tyrannosaurus out of a teapot. If the Tea Party takes up arms against the U.S. government, would it really require boots-on-the-ground warfare to control? What are they going to do -- misspell us to death? These are the folks who march around demanding that the government keeps its dirty hand off Medicare. How hard could it be to outsmart them?

Let's come up with a simple alternative. If conservatives take up arms against the federal government, what's the easiest way to stop them?

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