Well, I think the "gang of thugs" may have arrived here in our time., especially if you listen to how MSNBC and CNN describe the Tea Parties. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not in love with Fox news either, but the tea parties are mainly people that actually care and want their elected representatives to listen and be a voice for THEM, the people. It's not a political party, and in fact it's quite varied. Dems and Independents make up close to half of it.
As to the UK understanding, very interresting. We have two UK amphib ships in town here, and I was hobnobbing with some Royal Marines and Royal Navy types over at the local VFW the other night, and their take on it was the "thug thing", Especially Adams and Revere up in Boston. They were at war with the French and others at the time, and couldn't devote much to our "feeble" attempt to break loose, and believe that it was the politics of Ben Franklin, over in France that enticed the French to come over (LaFayette) to kind of trap and box the English in. Their view was that the French actually forced submission for us.
And yes, bring on the thugs.
Well I would urge you to take a step back and look at this objectively. Verify what is being said with independent sources.
For the most part the tea parties are very misguided, hyperbolic and just generally don't know what they are talking about. Many of them also use propaganda techniques in their rhetoric. One main faction of the tea party are the Sarah Palin followers, who are very authoritarian, but fairly conservative as well. They are the worst for sure. They are a nationalist group, and their "us vs them" nonthinking leads to dehumanization and sometimes even demonization of out-groups. Don't fall for that divisive idiocy.
Then there are the more conservative and much less authoritarian tea parties that tend to be big Ron Paul fans. Not everything they say is poorly thought-out and misguided like the other group. This group actually has a point sometimes. Particularly when they rail on the authoritarian policies of the 2 main parties or the other tea party faction.
If you tend to be conservative, listen to the ideas of people who describe themselves as "Barry Goldwater conservatives". Those people actually have much better thought out ideas by far than anything that people who identify with tea parties do. Or learn about Barry Goldwater. He was the foremost conservative and really came up with a lot of the best ideas. He was a self described conservative, but is actually a lot closer to libertarianism than Ron Paul and those sorts of people.