Sunday, March 01, 2009
Rick Santelli: Man of the (Rich) People
That's an article in Playboy (I swear I only go there for the articles!) about the curious connections between CNBC's Rick Santelli and various right-wing faux grassroots organizations. It also discusses those groups' links to the multibillionaire Koch family:
What hasn’t been reported until now is evidence linking Santelli’s “tea party” rant with some very familiar names in the Republican rightwing machine, from PR operatives who specialize in imitation-grassroots PR campaigns (called “astroturfing”) to bigwig politicians and notorious billionaire funders. As veteran Russia reporters, both of us spent years watching the Kremlin use fake grassroots movements to influence and control the political landscape. To us, the uncanny speed and direction the movement took and the players involved in promoting it had a strangely forced quality to it. If it seemed scripted, that's because it was.
See? If you can get Joe Sixpack to think your multibillionaire interests are his interests, you can spark a "movement." With websites that were pre-registered months ago, PR specialists who have scrubbed their contacts with you from their websites, and a willing media that asks no questions. Scary that it took guys with experience in RUSSIAN POLITICS to uncover this in America.