BUT DON’T CALL IT “ASTROTURF:” L.A. Times: Wanted: Obama healthcare reform volunteers willing to be paid $15 an hour. “It seems that, despite all the media attention lavished on e-mail appeals to his supporters, not everyone pushing for President Obama’s embattled healthcare reform plan these warm August days is an idealistic volunteer in it for the sake of helping move the country forward and gaining medical attention for millions of uninsured Americans. . . . It’s a web ad on Craigslist: ‘You can work for change. Join motivated staff around the country working to make change happen. You can make great friends and money along the way. Earn $400-$600 a week.'”

Okay, actually, you can call it astroturf if you like.

UPDATE: “I can smell the sulphurous stench of a PIRG come-on three thousand miles away.” Plus this: “It would be interesting to know who is paying them. It would be even more interesting to know what these volunteers will be saying to their victims targets over the next month. But perhaps the most interesting question is: why now? Canvasses are mostly summer operations for several good reasons: weather, and a ready supply of students with time on their hands. I suppose weather’s not a real issue in LA, and there are probably a fair number of unemployed college grads wandering around who would be happy to make $15 an hour. But with school starting, there will be a lot fewer homeowners with time to listen.”