Remember when we told you last week that the radically-affiliated, anti-austerity group U.S. Uncut was planning "massive" grass-roots protests over this past tax weekend? Well it looks like they weren't that popular.
Scott's favorite blogger, "Zombie," attended one such rally in San Francisco. Guess what he found?
Well, actually not much. Zombie showed up and had a hard time finding the protesters, who apparently numbered at most about 45 people. But what Zombie did find were a few videos of the group protesting inside a local Bank of America:
"As you can see, the entire event is highly rehearsed," Zombie writes, "all the Uncutters have practiced their dance moves together ahead of time along with the marching band." He explains:
US Uncut advertised this as the true populist uprising rally, as a contrast to the phony astroturfed Tea Party. But if you invite the public to a rally beginning at 5pm and running to 6:30pm, and the organizers show up as a group early at the assigned place and then depart ten minutes before the public even has a chance to join in; and then go on a flash-mob march that features rehearsed choreographed dances; then it becomes completely obvious that this isn’t a mass movement, but rather just a small activist group doing political skits which they had practiced ahead of time, with no public involvement whatsoever.
As if that doesn't show enough, Zombie also found something else. Something he describes as showing the group is "busted:"
But wait — it gets much much worse. Another one of US Uncut’s official in-house videographers was also filming the day’s event, and put together a 13-minute video of the day’s entire protest. You can watch the whole thing here if you’re interested; but to save you time I took their own video and excerpted two crucial parts which reveal the utterly phony populism of the whole affair.
Now this will be interesting. Here's the video Zombie put together. See if you can catch it:
It's might not be completely obvious, so I'll let Zombie explain:
[T]he first minute shows the SF US Uncut troupe doing their rehearsed and choreographed dance routine. As you watch it, pay close attention and note one of their members wearing a light beige shirt, sunglasses hanging around his neck, with a balding pate and a five-o’clock shadow. You can’t miss him in the crowd. But then keep watching. The second minute shows US Uncut about 15 minutes later after they have exited the bank and are now walking down the street. The videographer asks the exact same guy, “Are you here for this demonstration?”, to which he replies, “No, I’m just wandering by, but I think all corporations should pay their taxes!” Not satisfied that the performance was believable, the videographer then asks him to repeat the lie so that she can get a better take. Busted!
So to recap, here's Zombie's argument: the "random" passerby was in the video from the beginning (and participated in the rehearsed dance), which seems to show either the group or at least the man felt the need to fake a populist gathering. In addition, there seems to be an "outtake" exchange between the videographer and the interviewee. That's hard to prove unequivocally, as maybe the woman really just didn't get a clear response. But, considering the video already shows the man was in on it from the beginning, it seems plausible.
You can watch the entire 13-minute video posted by "carolharveysf," who seems to either be a part of the group or sympathetic to its cause, as she posted several videos from the event:
Now, if an organized Tea Party group got caught interviewing one of their own members who falsely claimed to be just a random passerby who joined the protest on the spur of the moment, the left-leaning blogs and media would make it front page news, proof positive that Tea Party populism is fake and that it’s not really an authentic populist uprising.
Read Zombie's entire post here. You'll also be able to see more pictures and videos from the event.