Obama’s Astroturf

Pollitics has hustlers popping up all the time.  Silver tongued devils, snake oil salesmen, those who wrap their arms around your shoulder and make you feel great populate the political world.  Then they stab you in the back. 

Today a certain Joe Anthony learned a life lesson in the “new politics”. 

For the past few weeks, the campaign decided it would be better if they just took control of the profile and we decided to try to come to some agreement. By this time, I didn’t have quite as much respect for the campaign guys, and frankly felt like I was just being used. They knew about this profile the entire time, and really just waited until it got enough media coverage and friends request so they could step in and bully me out of it.

The last few weeks were just insane. They kept scheduling phone conferences with me, I would wake up early that day after barely sleeping the night before, I’d take time off work, etc. and each after another would be postponed at the last minute. This went on for weeks.

It got to the point where I didn’t feel comfortable turning the profile over to the campaign unless they paid for it. This was largely symbolic. The same campaign that inspired me to work so hard to build this community, the same campaign whose underlying message stresses “the power of the individual to have an impact on politics”, was constantly downplaying my role in this, bullying me, and a couple of other things that were just rotten and dishonest (specifically in connection with Myspace, and the campaign quashing a recent NPR interview about the profile).

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