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Since the tea party tsunami of 2010 inundated the Republican Party with a wave of ideological purists, we have seen political groups and government entities become less and less tolerant of any type of opinions that conflict with their own.

I have written about the Davis County Republican Executive Committee conspiring to remove the party secretary because she dared exercise her constitutional rights of expression by signing a petition they didn't like.

The excuse was that the party had passed a resolution supporting the current caucus/convention system of candidate nominations and denouncing the Count My Vote petition to change it.

Therefore, the conspirators reasoned, the party secretary was going against the official stance of the party and was disloyal.

The whole exercise seemed reminiscent of the passages in George Orwell's "Animal Farm" where the pigs, taking control of the farm after ousting the humans in a revolution, would accuse some of the farm animals of disloyalty, force confessions and then orchestrate a public execution of the animals that would be slaughtered on the spot by the dogs, which were the designated enforcers.

That was just an out-of-control political party organization.

The intolerance from elected tea party acolytes is now popping up in governmental settings in which one not suitably regimented to the cause is ceremoniously silenced.

We saw that recently with the City Council of South Jordan, an ultra-conservative enclave where Democrats are publicly nonexistent and the tea party anthem is sung like a church hymn.

Conservative Republican Councilman Steve Barnes was banned from attending council meetings by his conservative Republican colleagues because of a perceived conflict of interest.

At least that was the excuse.

The council was deciding which development consultant to hire to research options for the 67-acre city-owned golf course, driving range and mini-golf center known as Mulligans, which also serves as a scenic open space for birds and wildlife along the Jordan River.

One of the bidders was developer Kem Gardner, who is Barnes' uncle.

But Barnes said he would abstain from discussions of the bidders and would recuse himself from any votes on the project.

That wasn't good enough. The City Council's majority voted to ban him from the entire meetings in which the bids would be discussed. Barnes complained that one-fifth of the city that he represents would have no voice in any party of city business discussed at the meeting.

It raised enough concern from Rep. Rich Cunningham, R-South Jordan, that he is contemplating legislation in the next session that would outlaw city councils from banning elected members.

Barnes was allowed back into the meetings after the council voted to give the contract to the Boyer Co. instead of Gardner.

The irony is that city officials were hoping to woo the Hale Theatre to the newly constructed Mulligans site. But after the city chose Boyer, the Hale Theatre announced it would move to Sandy and then had a meeting with Sandy Mayor Tom Dolan and Gardner, who is known as an adept fundraiser.

And while the official line on Barnes' banning was the conflict of interest excuse, there may have been a more Animal-Farm like scenario going on.

Many constituents had complained about the proposed new development of Mulligans and wanted to preserve the open space.

Before he was shunned by his colleagues, Barnes had two meetings with those constituents pushing for the open space preservation and explained what legal options they could pursue in their quest.

That, reportedly, earned the ire of some council members and city officials who took umbrage that one of their members had strayed from the fold and cavorted with the enemy.

So he needed to be punished. After all, in tea party land, no deviation from Big Brother's commands is allowed.