Angry renters ranting on AngryRenters.com? I think not! The WSJ explains the latest astroturfing campaign with its genesis ITB. (They just don’t “get it,” do they?):
Angry they may be, but the people behind AngryRenter.com are certainly not renters. Though it purports to be a spontaneous uprising, AngryRenter.com is actually a product of an inside-the-Beltway conservative advocacy organization led by Dick Armey, the former House majority leader, and publishing magnate Steve Forbes, a fellow Republican. It’s a fake grass-roots effort — what politicos call an AstroTurf campaign — that provides a window into the sleight-of-hand ways of Washington.
The housing crisis has sparked broad financial and economic distress. The House of Representatives responded last week by passing a bill that would provide up to $300 billion in federal insurance to help refinance troubled mortgages. President Bush has threatened to veto it, calling the measure a reward for speculators. On Thursday, key Senate Democrats and Republicans reached an agreement in principle on a compromise housing-rescue bill.
This week, officials from FreedomWorks, the organization behind the site, delivered to Senate leaders antibailout petitions signed by 44,500 people who clicked their agreement on AngryRenter.com, at least some of whom thought its grass was real.
Full story here.