Last month, President Obama held a conference call with a small group of liberal bloggers, asking them to keep pressure on Congress in the health care fight. Now those same bloggers are part of an orchestrated effort by the Democratic Party and the White House to portray protests against their health care legislation as, well,
John Amato of Crooks and Liars was on last month's conference call with Obama. Yesterday, Amato asked, "How long will it take the traditional media to expose the corporations that are running this con and even mention the word 'astrotufing' in a serious way?" In the same post, he praised Robert Gibbs for accusing the protesters of being phony.
David Dayen of the blog D-Day was on the call. Yesterday, he wrote a post titled, "Top-Level Democrats Assault The Extremist Astroturfers." It began, "The White House took the lead on this, publicly calling the teabagger disruptions an example of astroturfing and citing conservative industry-backed groups taking credit for activating the rioters. Now other elements of the Democratic Party are taking up the baton. Dick Durbin and Chuck Schumer blasted the clown show today..."
Joan McCarter of Daily Kos was also on the call. Yesterday, she wrote of the protesters, "It's kind of sad, isn't it? They think they're part of a real populist movement, but the freedom they're fighting for is the freedom of corporations to make even more money off of them. It's that cynicism of this astroturf campaign that's particularly disturbing, because it's not about the rights of citizens to freely express their dissent."
You know what? I don't much care if these bloggers want to help the White House sell Obamacare. It's a free country. Should you take their complaints about the nefarious forces on the Right seriously? Your mileage may vary, but I surely don't.