It’s now 6 days and counting before the billionaire-funded Americans for Prosperity holds its “grassroots movement” rally against worker unions in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Americans for Prosperity says that it has 117,000 activists in the state “taking action every day.” How likely is it that 117,000 activists will show up in Harrisburg on June 4?
If actual empirical trends are any indication, the “grassroots” claim by “Americans for Prosperity” is more hype than reality. Over the last 24 hours, only one person has responded to AFP’s request for its followers to spread the word on Twitter. Absolutely nobody has signed up to go on AFP’s facebook event page. Only 3 people have even bothered to like Americans for Prosperity’s Facebook posts promoting the rally. Only 28 people are listed as “talking about this” on the AFP Facebook page, meaning that only 28 people have liked, shared or commented on the group’s many posts over the last 7 days.
What this means, looking forward to the rally that’s happening in less than a week’s time, is that there is no viral excitement about the event. People aren’t talking about it. People aren’t spreading the word. No one’s signed up for the event online and hardly anyone has even “liked” the announcements that have been made. If there really were 117,000 activists for Americans for Prosperity “taking action every day,” this is not what we’d see. If a small group appears at this fake-grassroots “rally” with a screen-printed t-shirt and a professionally-made sign, reporters shouldn’t credulously record their words for rebroadcast. Reporters should ask them how much they got paid to show up, or who they’re interning for.