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The Astro Turf is Always Greener on The Other Side of the Skeptic Tank August 5, 2009

blackmane-animation(500)How do groups of  normal mild mannered voters suddenly morph into angry, organized hate mobs?

What is the difference between  expressing a legitimate concern about the direction our country is moving in and “acting out” in fits of “phony outrage”?

I couldn’t tell you the answer to either of those questions.  What do I know, right?  Apparently the Obama administration is omniscient and only they know when voters are displaying genuine  anger towards government policies.

Accounts of Barack Obama’s first six months in office have shown us that his administration and followers possess a “if you are not with us, you must be racist right wing extremist and against us” mentality.

If the tea party protesters were all racist Republicans, then any opponent of Obama’s efforts at health care reform must be angry racists too.

Hmm, doesn’t look any different from an Obamabot “yes we can” rally with demon posters of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, or Sarah Palin Is A Cunt tee shirts.

AngryMob

The Boston Globe

Democrats deride ‘astroturf’ efforts by healthcare foes

by Foon Rhee, August 4, 2009

Democrats are striking back at conservative groups that are taking the credit for helping opponents show up at healthcare meetings around the country.

Town halls with constituents hosted over the weekend by Representative Lloyd Doggett in Texas and by Senator Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania were disrupted by opponents of the healthcare overhaul plans promoted by President Obama and congressional Democrats.

The Democratic National Committee and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee sent out missives today arguing that groups such as Conservatives for Patients’ Rights and FreedomWorks and are creating fake grassroots enthusiasm — “astroturf” in political circles — by stacking meetings with outside activists.

“The Republicans and their allied groups – desperate after losing two consecutive elections and every major policy fight on Capitol Hill – are inciting angry mobs of a small number of rabid right wing extremists funded by K Street lobbyists to disrupt thoughtful discussions about the future of health care in America taking place in congressional districts across the country,” DNC spokesman Brad Woodhouse said in a statement this afternoon.

“However, much like we saw at the McCain-Palin rallies last year where crowds were baited with cries of ‘socialist,’ ‘communist,’ and where the birthers movement was born – these mobs of extremists are not interested in having a thoughtful discussion about the issues – but like some Republican leaders have said – they are interested in ‘breaking’ the president and destroying his presidency,” Woodhouse added.

“These mobs are bussed in by well funded, highly organized groups run by Republican operatives and funded by the special interests who are desperately trying to stop the agenda for change the President was elected to bring to Washington. Despite the headline grabbing nature of these angry mobs and their disruptions of events, they are not reflective of where the American people are on the issues – or the hundreds of thousands of thoughtful discussions taking place around kitchen tables, water coolers and in homes. The right wing extremists’ use of things like devil horns on pictures of our elected officials, hanging members of Congress in effigy, breathlessly questioning the President’s citizenship and the use of Nazi SS symbols and the like just shows how outside of the mainstream the Republican Party and their allies are. This type of anger and discord did not serve Republicans well in 2008 – and it is bound to backfire again.”

Nazi SS symbols? Questioning Obama’s citizenship? What about just common non crazy people who are in opposition to this health care bill that remarkably has not been read by most congressional members, yet it is being forced down our throats?  In the microenviornment of Obamaland, no one is allowed to question “The One” and the media will let you know this.  Take Chris Matthews reporting of the Lloyd Doggett health care town hall meeting:

Chris Matthews refers to the events in Austin, Texas as “zaniness”. What is zany about voters expressing their concern over nationalized health care? How does Chris know that those chanting “Just Say No!!!” are all Republicans?  I am acquainted with several Obama supporters whose criticism of Obama did not begin in earnest until nationalized health care reform had risen to the forefront of political debate.   Are we to believe that there is no such animal as an Obama supporter who experiences a moment in their life during which they are not in complete orgasmic ecstasy with President Barack Obama and his policies?  Only Republicans protest against nationalized health care and of course any protesters are never grass roots but AstroTurf.


Last Saturday, I went to my pharmacist to refill my prescriptions. Failing to phone ahead meant I would wait for twenty minutes or so while the pharmacist prepared my request.  Although I normally wait by hanging out at the magazine rack, this time I remained at the counter because I was privy to an interesting but sad conversation between my pharmacist and another customer.

Pharmacist: Can I help you?

Customer: I need this prescription right away. (Handing pharmacist a piece of paper)

Pharmacist: (looks at paper, punches information in the computer. Hesitates) Sir who is this for? Are you Tash–?

Customer: No, it is for my wife. We have Medicare, Medicaid whatever it should be there in your machine.

Pharmacist: Yes, I know you have coverage but there is a problem…the insurer is no longer allowing payment for this medication because of your wife’s age.

Customer: What??!!

Pharmacist: They are not allowing this medication for your wife because she is over the age limit.

Customer:  (getting angry) What does that mean?

Pharmacist: It means they are not covering the medication. They will not pay for the medication. She is too old to receive it.

Customer: (hesitates, then smiles) Can I just pay for it?

Pharmacist: (shrugs) with your own money?

Customer: Yes (opens wallet shuffles through bills)

Pharmacist: Okay. (proceeds to complete prescription order)…That will be $247.00

Customer: (bug eyed) What did you say? $2.47?

Pharmacist: (shaking head, looking annoyed) No, two hundred forty-seven dollars. That is the cost of the medication without insurance coverage.

Customer: (silent for a while) Never mind. (walks away).

angry_mob-1In the process of eavesdropping, I once again thanked God for my health insurance. My co-pay was only $8 per prescription. $24 is a long way from $247.00.  What would the man and his wife do and why did Medicaid decide was she too old to receive the medication that was prescribed to her -obviously by her physician?

Notwithstanding the need for more health care coverage for more individuals, I  do believe that the execution of the any health care reform plan should address this growing fear among many of us that the government will become our primary health care decision maker by playing God. This group gets this medication while another can not have it because they are unfortunately, over 60 years of age.  No wonder many of the angry town hall meeting mobsters are senior citizens. Who cares if they are Republicans or Democrats?  President Barack Obama, the self-proclaimed “People’s President”  never seems to welcome skepticism from the voters. He does not have constituents, he has subjects.

The former community organizer no longer seems to dig community protest.  What ever happened that eloquent  “get in their faces” tactic?  With the political backing of Oprah Winfrey, The Kennedy clan, George Soros and other rich folk and lobbyist Obama is supposed to shun, the closest he has come to grassroots activism is orchestrating his tee off time at the golf course.  The DNC  is not the party that is down with the people. How could that be at all possible when they specialize in keeping the people down?

Soon it will become evident to all who voted for Obama that Obamabots check in, but they don’t check out.  I predict that there will be many unhappy hipsters lurking about the Co-OP stores looking to change shifts.  Poor things, I hope wheat grass shots come in Astro Turf?

Autographed Letter Signed,

AFROCITY

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28 Responses to “The Astro Turf is Always Greener on The Other Side of the Skeptic Tank”

  1. swanspirit Says:

    Brilliant post Afrocity !
    But don’t fret about the poor Obams .. they can escape the riff raff on vacay in elite Martha’s Vinyard , where the grassroots are salt grass and safely cordoned off from the hoi polloi . No one can get in THEIR faces there … while they ask americans to rat each other out on the internet …to keep the astroturf myth going …
    “If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to flag@whitehouse.gov. “

  2. Alice Paul Says:

    I am opposed to Obama’s health care plan precisely because it is NOT HR676! It is NOT single payer. It actually panders to the insurance companies and it WILL NOT WORK.

    I am a part of some prog groups who are livid at this sham of a health care plan. Not everyone against this plan is against it for the SAME reasons!

    Righties think it’s socialism. They needn’t fear…it’s not single payer universal health care though those buzz words are used to describe it over and over as fact just like in Dean’s echo chamber. I think the republicans on high know this isn’t single payer but, they don’t want it anyway so they keep using that “universal” language to rile up the troops.

    I don’t care who stops it as long as it does not pass. If it does pass there goes any chance of EVER getting single payer as a real plan in this country ever again. Obama you fuck up you!

    • ARESAY Says:

      If you don’t truly know that the plan is to start the ball rolling toward single payer health care go here and click on HEALH CARE link, http://aresay.blogspot.com/

    • Butters Says:

      GREAT SUMMATION OF THE FACTS AND SITUATION ALICE PAUL!

      Sorry for the all caps, but I’m read so much dis-information – especially on some PUMA sites – about this. (Some PUMAs seem to actually think it is a good thing to pass another un-read monstrosity if a bill, just like the government bail out of Wall Street’s brokers.)

  3. The propaganda surrounding these legitimate protests makes me heartsick. I cannot believe I am living in such a corrupt country.

    Let’s have the Senate and House try this plan out for 10 years–a pilot program, if you will. When they are all incapacitated or dead within 2 years, we can install real representatives.

    Who is with me?

    • Kei Says:

      I agree sonic,

      let’s make it a pilot program for only congress critters w/ no opt out, if they voted for it.

    • Butters Says:

      I’m with you Sonic.

      I asked my dentist last week where the bill left dental care.

      He didn’t know but stated (before I agreed I had been thinking the same) that Congress ought to be forced to have the SAME coverage as they want to force on the voters!

    • AfricanAgainstO Says:

      I am with you Ninja – isn’t amazing we have forgotten the meaning of a “pilot program” – things need to be tested before implimentation – everybody does this except this fools who don’t even read the bill, let alone have a pilot program.

  4. ARESAY Says:

    It’s easy to tell the difference. Conservative, hard working people don’t have time to protest frivolously. Liberal freeloaders have nothing but time to get on buses, and march around holding signs someone else made-up and hand to them. I’ve seen both sides of the fence first hand.

  5. Kei Says:

    Excellent post Afrocity,

    The opposition to Obama and his policies has been very bi partisan/non partisan as far as I can see, locally. As Congress proceeds on their merry way without regard to what he people are saying; I now am detecting a very strong anti incumbent/anti DC tone.

    Let the press continue to run cover for the president, it will lead to their own and the president’s down fall.

    I will never fall in line and I will continue to resist tyranny.

  6. manbearpig68 Says:

    It always kills me people think of him as the great uniter. Even today in his speech in IN, he targeted people who didn’t have the same beliefs as him and said they are playing political games for their own prosperity and don’t want the country to succeed. Then went on with his usual rhetoric of how this country was formed and what kind of ideals the founding fathers had. How can anybody stand and listen to this is beyond me. He is really committing treason against the founding ideals. Especially in Elkhart IN where he keeps making promises and Unemployment is 20%. People (especially Elkhart) need to wake up and listen to the protests and look at the direction we are heading. The pre-election predictions of Obama made by Conservatives have already proven true. Why doubt the protesters voice that keeps agitating the left when it is making more and more sense? Save the country from the Obama threat!!

  7. johninca Says:

    As a republican pol used to say, those Democrats are running like scalded dogs. If they try to ram this fascist health takeover through, they could lose sixty seats in the House (although I pray they lose a lot more).

  8. WMCB Says:

    We’ve been discussing this very thing over on TC. I pissed off an Obot yesterday who was whining about the astroturfing. I went all wide-eyed and said, “You mean…you mean….they are community organizing??? How horrible! What utterly disgusting tactics! Quick, pass a law saying only Chicago Democrats are allowed to read Alinsky!”

    Disagree with the Repubs on policy all you want, Dems. But this panty-twisting faux noble outrage over TACTICS is the saddest and funniest thing I’ve seen come down the political pike in years. The Democrats currently have a major case of can-dish-it-out-but-can’t-take-it-itis.

    I don’t at all deny that some bad nutty groups are leeching onto and seeing an advantage in driving these protests. Of course they are. Just as some very bizarre and radical groups that were everything from extreme communists to batshit anarchist/crypto-libertarians latched onto the anti-war protests and tried to further their agendas.

    But that sort of no-holds-barred activist element did not negate that there was a very real, broad-based opposition to the war among very normal middle-of-the-road people. It didn’t mean that people like Code Pink had somehow “manufactured” all that anger. They took advantage of it, but no, they did not create it.

    When I was protesting many of the Bush policies, as a centrist Democrat one of the things that frustrated me was the right-wings characterization of ME as part and parcel of the most moonbatty of the moonbats, the la-la crazies and America-haters that yes, DO exist in this country. It’s always an easy out to find the fringy-est of the fringe, and pronounce all who protest as of the same mindset as “those crazy people”.

    This townhall thing is no different. And people are not as stupid as the media thinks. They talk to their neighbors, their families, their coworkers, people they personally KNOW who have protested. And they are asking, “Did you go to that thing because you were “astro-turfed?” “Um, no, Bob, I went because I think the bill sucks, and the hurry to pass it unread and unfunded is alarming me.”

    Oh, and check out this voter eating Steny Hoyer’s lunch and calling him a liar at a town hall. He is a DEMOCRAT. This anger is real, and broad – it is not only the far-far right who are upset:

    • afrocity Says:

      That is a great video WMCB…LOL

    • What the HELL is hoyer talking about? The frikkin’ Erie Canal? he simply dodges and dodges and insults the people he’s supposed to represent.

    • kywrite Says:

      About the alleged astroturfing — dead on right. I’ve “radicalized” my mother and aunt by educating them on some of what Obama’s done — and these two totally politically-uninvolved ladies are going to tea parties and town halls and protests AND BRINGING FRIENDS. (Buwahahahahah! My evil astroturfing campaign has been a success!)

      I am certain this pattern has been echoed thousands of times all over the country. THAT’s where the protesters are coming from.

  9. John morris Says:

    I have one substantive recomendation for real reform.

    Since it seems almost nobody except for Ron Paul intends to every obey the Constitution, we at least need some form of personal liability for congress and administration officials.

    At this point they have almost no skin in the game at all. The worst that can happen to them short of eating an intern in office is getting kicked out of office.

    This has to change. Most of the laws protecting lawmakers from personal liability for their actions have to be repealed.

    Suppose lawmakers proposing major schemes had to pay up big bucks for failing to meet promised goals. A major failure- should cost at least 30% of pay.

    Liabilities for actions taken later found to be against the law or the Constitution (95% of Obama’s policies) should be much more severe.

    • Kei Says:

      John,

      In reflection . . . you make a good point. If the schlep can’t afford his “liability” bond he can’t run anymore. Puts a new twist on no pay, no play

    • wmcb Says:

      Hey, my husband’s a doc, and he doesn’t get a pass if he completely screws up people’s lives. Why should they?

  10. joanelle Says:

    The only way we’ll get what we need is if EVERY CITIZEN – that includes elected officials get the same health care package.

    I remember Hillary saying that voters should have the same kind of coverage they have on the hill.

  11. Peter Says:

    All I know is that if my going to gatherings and my writing in my, and other, blogs is paid for by the Republican Party or the insurance companies, my checks are late. Very late. Can Obama fix that?
    Oh, I know one other thing…a lot of, perhaps most, Americans are the children and grandchildren of people who risked everything they had, and left everyone they knew to come to Golden America. We fought the French and the Indians, we fought the Brits a couple of times and then we fought the Mexicans and the Indians some more, each other to end slavery, more fighting with the Indians, then the Spanish, the Germans, the Germans again plus the Japenese and the Italians,
    Then we fought the North Koreans and Chinese, then the Vietnamese, finally the Afghans and Iraqis, plus lots of assorted other Muslims who came to join in and get their virgins or raisins or whatever else a nutjob is supposed to get in nutjob heaven when he ties in to the Great Satan.
    And Obama thinks he can take our country down? Hmmph. Fat chance, Barry.

  12. John morris Says:

    I’m really serious about that idea. One of the biggest problems with all government actions is the extreme difficulty of holding anyone personally responsible for their actions.

    Imagine spending a trillion dollars in the private sector after not reading the “bill”, contract or whatever. It just don’t happen cause people have far too much on the line to do things like that.

    Of course, someone will bring up the financial crisis– which was to a great degree caused by government policies like “too big to fail and FDIC insurance that freed bankers and investors from risk.

    Real capitalism is means not just the private right to profit from success but also taste the bitter risk of failure.

  13. wmcb Says:

    You guys MUST go read this satire piece on the “mobsters”. It’s too hilarious! Love the comparison photos of how to recognize “grassroots” vs. “outside organizer” groups. LMAO!

    http://iowahawk.typepad.com/iowahawk/2009/08/know-your-town-hall-mob-agitators.html

    • AfricanAgainstO Says:

      Enjoyed it – even before I read the para below the pics I noticed the organized t-shirts uniforms and well printed signs of the pro health reform group vs the anti health reform groups crooked graphics and signs – surely they were paid by the Insurance/pharma groups who give away free posters, notepads, t-shirts, pens, medication …

      Need to check this from Weekely Standard that a friend sent me
      Think Progress, MSNBC ‘Manufacture’ a Story With Putative Smoking Gun ‘Mob’ Memo
      This is the guy they are blaming for the mob … wow he is so ACORN like – right!

      • John morris Says:

        It’s somewhat off the subject but I have a few thoughts. First is that this discussion was far more revealing and informative than 95% of press interviews. Second is that several of questioners like the woman who came up with the real liabilities of the U.S. government of close to or over $70 trillion know their facts.

        The subject of the debt and hidden liabilities points out the real mechanism by which we are being enslaved. (the same thing is happening at all levels of government) Lawmakers, unions, government employees and other special interests have been promising us things without attempting to honestly reveal the true costs of their promises.

        As far as I know all businesses are forced to use what is called accrual acounting which honestly tries to estimate both current income and outflow but also the real cost of all future assets and liabilities like benefits, pension costs and other promises. Of course this is not easily done and these estimates are often wrong. But, government at all levels makes absolutely no attempt to do this.

        In the private sector–this is called fraud!!

        Say for example, you had 5,000 in the bank but negative home equity, no other assets and a leaking roof requiring 40,000 in repairs. By accrual accounting, you are pretty insolvent. But by cash accounting you might say you are ok as long as you can pay your monthly bills.

        This is what’s happened at all levels of government. Why do governmet workers get such plush pension and healthcare benefits? Because, the government can hide their true future costs.

        What this means in reality is that current generations are enslaving their children and grandchildren against their will.

  14. John morris Says:

    Please, please help if you can.

    The few honest and hard working heros at The Institute For Truth In Accounting need the publics help in uncovering their state government’s real liabilities.

    That’s right folks–the state and local governments so eager to tell us how our eggs should be cooked and whether we can grow corn in city limits are not going to tell us the liabilities they have racked up. Most likely-they have no idea.

    “In the business world you can look at the audited financial statements to determine a corporation’s financial condition. Unfortunately, you can’t do that for state governments, because tens of billions of dollars are hidden off-balance-sheet.

    For example California’s most recent balance sheet reported that the state had net assets of $25 billion. Unfortunately, more than $70 billion of liabilities for employees’ pension and health care benefits are not reported on the balance-sheet. Yet the auditors correctly certified that the balance sheet was compiled using Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP).

    The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) who sets GAAP for governments, has issued an Invitation to Comment (ITC) on Pension Accounting and Financial Reporting. The ITC is intended to obtain feedback from constituents at an early stage of the Board’s reexamination of its pension accounting and financial reporting standards.

    The Institute for Truth in Accounting will be providing our comments to the Board, but all of our voices are needed.Please join us in demanding that the truth be presented accurately and clearly to the public.

    Below is GASB’s News Release regarding this invitation of comment on Pension Accounting and Financial Reporting.

    A five page overview of the issues involved can be found at: http://gasb.org/plain-language_documents/Pension_ITC_PLA.pdf The Board has also prepared a 35 page Plain Language Supplement, written using a minimum of technical terminology, that describes in more detail the issues involved and poses specific questions the Board is considering. This document can be found at: http://gasb.org/plain-language_documents/pensionaccountingandfinancialreporting_plain-language.pdf

    The full Invitation for Comments can be found at: http://gasb.org/exp/itc_pension_accounting_and_financial_reporting.pdf

    I know that this may be a great deal of documents for your organization to plow through, so I would like to offer our assistance. The Institute is available to help you and your organization in the formation and submission of your comments. Please contact us for assistance in this important matter.

    I urge you to provide some comments to GASB on this important issue.Billions of dollars are at stake. Your state’s survival is at stake. As Thomas Jefferson said, “An informed electorate is the basis for a sound democracy.” We believe that a large part of the states’ current financial troubles has resulted from a mis-informed electorate.

    See GASB’s Press Release

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