Since 1985, the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights (FTCR) has been the bane of insurance companies, energy utilities, politicians and other entities that the Santa Monica-based consumer group considers corrupt fat cats.
The feisty consumer advocates, notorious for staging attention-grabbing stunts to publicize causes, now have a less unwieldy, more descriptive name: Consumer Watchdog.
President Jamie Court and other staff celebrated last week by launching a redesigned web site and reminiscing about past exploits.
Take the time supporters paraded a roast suckling pig outside a state regulatory hearing in downtown Los Angeles in 2004 to protest the sale of then-Thousand Oaks-based WellPoint Health Networks to an out-of-state rival. The sale was approved, but with several conditions that sought to hold down rate hikes.
"Public opinion is our bludgeon," said Court.
Daniel Miller can be reached at [email protected]