Kurt Nimmo
June 13, 2013

Own a water pipe? In Florida, you’ll go to prison for five years.

It’s another sign that the Tea Party meme is an excuse to institute more statist coercion. Florida Governor Rick Scott has signed legislation that will make possession of a pipe a third degree felony beginning July 1. A third degree felony in Florida could result in a five year prison term, a loss of the right to vote (for career politicos like Scott), and a lifelong criminal stigma.

Back in 2010 the Tea Party rallied around Scott and it was acknowledged that the party was largely responsible for his election victory.

In all fairness, the honeymoon ended soon thereafter when Scott showed his real colors, most recently when he had a Second Amendment supporting sheriff, Nick Finch, arrested.

The Florida Tea Party support for Republican Scott is simply another example of how politically naïve Tea Party members are. That naivety resulted in the near effortless takeover of the Tea Party by Republican operatives who scoured it of any original libertarian influence or connection to Ron Paul. It was quickly reduced to a cheering section for the establishment.

Rick Scott is “really the Benedict Arnold of the tea party/patriot movement in Florida. Most conservatives feel betrayed by him and members have been calling me and saying they want him fired,” Everett Wilkinson of the South Florida Tea Party told the Associated Press.

Scott is a tax-and-spend Republican who exploited a sophomoric Tea Party to get elected. He is a true blue lover of the state and believes in the divine right of government to rule over the individual and use violence against him. Due to this, Scott thinks he has the right to put people in corporate-run prison for possessing the following:

(a) Metal, acrylic, glass, stone, plastic, or ceramic smoking pipes, with or without screens, permanent screens, or punctured metal bowls.
(b) Water pipes.
(c) Carburetion tubes and devices.
(d) Chamber pipes.
(e) Carburetor pipes.
(f) Electric pipes.
(g) Air-driven pipes.
(h) Chillums.
(i) Bongs.
(j) Ice pipes or chillers.

The Tea Party needs to get with the program or face irrelevance. It needs to get out of the establishment Republican Party and return to its roots, if that is even possible.

The Tea Party began as the Boston Tea Party in 2006. It was founded by a group of former Libertarian Party members who criticized the party for its “abdication of political responsibilities,” declaring that “Americans deserve and desperately need a pro-freedom party that forcefully advocates libertarian solutions to the issues of today.” The Boston Tea Party opposed statism at all levels. “The Boston Tea Party supports reducing the size scope and power of government at all levels and on all issues, and opposes increasing the size, scope and power of government at any level, for any purpose.”

It needs to return to these values. But probably never will. Instead, we can expect basically good-hearted folks to be fooled over and over ad infinitum by the establishment.

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