No doubt -- I'm away from the TV but I have no doubt -- there's much excitement in the conservative punditsphere over the apparent populist uprising taking place against taxes, which the conservative punditsphere doesn't bother to differentiate from "big" (i.e., wasteful) government. I'm with MSNBC on this little family dispute:
[CNBC's tantrum-throwing NYSE floor reporter Rick Santelli] also said despite the claims from others in the media, including people at CNBC’s sister network MSNBC, calling the movement “Astroturf,” Santelli declared it a grassroots movement.
“I think from a grassroots standpoint, I’m sure some of the media out there is not going to peg it that way, but isn’t it about as American as it gets – for people to roll their strollers and make their signs and go voice their opinion about the direction of the country?” Santelli said. “Good, bad or indifferent – that’s a great thing. There’s not a lot of countries, of course, that afford their people that, that type of right. It’s a great thing.”
Yes, why on earth would 'some media out there' not call this 'grassroots' effort grassroots? Because, quite simply, 'Astroturf' is what this is:
The tea parties were promoted by FreedomWorks, a conservative nonprofit advocacy group based in Washington and led by former Republican House Majority Leader Dick Armey of Texas, a lobbyist whose corporate clients including Verizon, Raytheon, liquor maker Diageo, CarMax and drug company Sanofi Pasteur.
That, people, is not a grassroots, populist uprising. That is an uprising brought to you and underwritten by big business and big government. That is not the peasants sharpening their pitchforks, it's pawns being played in the game. It's simulacrum. Well, and to be fair, it's very effective politics. The slick political insiders convinced the peasants to do the insiders' bidding while convincing the peasants that it was their own idea; and that it is for their own good. Deceptive, but incredibly effective. Or in other words, the usual old-guard Republican game.