The Top Ten Astroturfers of 2015. Astroturf, as in Fake Grassroots.
An informal, non-scientific survey recently cited the top ten astroturfers according to respondents.*
* The results are from 169 Twitter respondents answering a question either directly or through direct message.
You may ask, so just what is this Astroturf? Isn't that what Nancy Pelosi called the Tea Party grass roots movement? Notice she said "WE" call it astroturf. Yes the "WE" here means liberals, they invented modern astroturf though I'll bet it is a tactic they just took from nefarious practices of the pastand added it to their modern playbook which has nothing original in it.
As is so often the case liberals like Nancy Pelosi, extremely familiar with the deceptive practices of liberals, would have to jump to the conclusion a real grass roots movement (such as the Tea Party) is "Astroturf" because in their world they know there are no real "liberal" grassroots movements, they created the concept of astroturf, fake grass roots movements and have used it extensively to help promote their liberal agendas. So Pelosi, one of THE elitist of the Democrat cabal can't conceive of a real grassroots movement, it's all trickery to her and a tactic her friends have used for decades.
tells it like it is.
Who is Sharyl Attkisson?
She's only an Emmy award winning investigative journalist,who spent much of her career at CNN and CBS. Check her bio here.
She destroyed the Obama administration on Fast And Furious, and is the author of Stonewalled: My Fight for Truth Against the Forces of Obstruction, Intimidation and Harassment in Obama’s Washington
She was the target of surveillance and hacking while reporting in Washington DC and critiques the media and the disappearing role of investigative journalism in the world today.
A journalist for over 20 years she has covered controversies and exposed scandals under both Republican and Democratic administrations.
How do Astroturfers operate?
Astroturfers operate under disguise. They produce ads and publish blogs, send letters to the editor, open non-profits, use Facebook and/or Twitter accounts, edit Wikipedia information or simply comment online to trick you into thinking a grassroots or independent movement is talking. They have partners on blogs and in news media which they use in an attempt to lend an legitimacy and impartiality to their nefarious efforts.
The sneaky point of astroturf is to convince you that widespread support for or against an agenda exists when it doesn't. Their biggest achievement is when their propaganda crosses over into somewhat trusted news organizations that cite or copy it without question.
Look at the language. Propagandists, which is what astroturfers are use inflammatory terms such as: pseudo-science, anti, debunking, nutty, quack, crank, conspiracy theory, junk science and deniers. They may claim to “debunk myths” that aren’t myths at all. They will declare a debate over that is far from over. They will assert that “everybody agrees” when there is enormous disagreement. Thelir goal is to make you believe you’re an outlier when you’re anything but. And it works on the "masses" of uninformed, even informed but informed with propaganda.
All you have to do is pay attention to many here on hubpages whose writings, once you have been enlightened about astroturfers and who they are (like the top ten) are obviously either the activities of astroturfers or of those who have already been duped by their propaganda.
For example: Wayne LaPierre Stand and Fight - Propaganda Techniques whose author plugs: Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America a known astroturf organization. Does this author care? He could care less, he glams onto anything that supports his view instead of forming his view from the facts which is the type of people these astroturf organizations hope to affect, by keeping them from the facts.
Look for hubs citing groups related to Gun Safety Action Fund, Inc. a top Astroturf effort. Everytown, Everytown for Gun Safety, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, I’m a Gun Sense Voter, It’s Time for Gun Sense in America, Gun Sense, Gun Sense Voter, Moms Take the Hill and Stroller Jam all present themselves as grass roots organizations made of “moms survivors, mayors and everyday Americans” but they are astroturf spearheaded by Michael Bloomberg and X-PR professional/mother Shannon Watts announcing last year a $50 million campaign to try to counter the efforts of the gun rights lobby.
Astroturfers like to controversialize and attack news organizations, people and personalities associated with an issue while avoiding dwelling on the facts. They will attempt to censor and/or silence commentators and topics, attack the messengers of the truth, anything rather than allow a discussion of the facts. Above all, these propagandists save all their expressed doubt for the people who are exposing wrongdoing avoiding skepticism about any wrongdoers. In plain English, they cast dispersion on those who question authority, instead of actually questioning authority.
A top operator in the spread of astroturf/propaganda is left wing blog Media Matters for America who has stated a goal of waging “guerrilla warfare and sabotage” against FOX News. Media Matters is second to the gun control groups. More broadly, Media Matters has long been known to act on behalf of Hillary Clinton's and the Obama Administration's interests known to be in direct contact with Obama officials.
A close third to gun control is a cabal of blogs using words such as “science” & “skeptic” in their titles or their spin trying to paint an image of neutrality and logic although they are fighting established science as well as serving pro-pharmaceutical industry agendas.
And on and on it goes, jusat look at the top ten. Sometimes, astroturf is in the eye of the beholder. But no matter how you see it, there is no short supply.
What's your opinion?
Is Astroturf the creation of the left to promote agendas unwanted by the public?
So here we are, in the end having to sum up and perhaps answer the question what came first, grass roots movements or astroturf (organizations disguised as grassroots movements but created, sponsored and directed by a few wealthy individuals, people who need to disguise the truth in order to get people to buy into their personal agendas which are seldom in the public interest at all)?
Given what we know now about astroturf, thanks to investigative reporters like Sharyl Attkisson, who is a true journalist with a backbone (hard to find today) I'd question heartily if real grass roots movements came first. Knowing that there is and has never been anything new in the liberals' playbook, I'd venture to say if you went back in history as far as possible you'd find astroturf being spawned by deceitful and end justifies the means cabals since the beginning of time.
We can thank God for those movements that truly are grassroots because given the state of affairs in today's world we may soon never be able to tell the real thing from the fake, a goal I sadly confess it appears the astroturfers are accomplishing day by day, year by year, until the return of Christ.