Friday, February 5, 2016

If it acts like a crook and talks like a crook....

This is what politicians would look like if they had to wear campaign donor logos the way NASCAR drivers do.

Money drives politics, fact.  My giving $5 or $50 or even $1,000 isn't a problem.  The problem comes when someone, or some special interest, gives $1,000,000.  If I call the office of the POTUS and say "Lowandslow here, a $100 campaign contributor, and I need to speak to the President", do you think they would put my call through?   

Now if someone representing Goldman Sachs or Monsanto or Exxon Mobil called and asked for the President's ear, what do you think their chances of getting connected might be?

Popular wisdom is that big business supports Republicans, and trial lawyers and labor unions support Democrats.  That is mostly, but not entirely, true.  Most special interests wisely (?) contribute to BOTH political parties, just in case their preferred candidate/party loses.  It's called hedging your bets.

There is another problem with how our current political process is funded:  We don't know who is giving or how much they are giving.  Individual contributors to candidates are listed and the amount they can contribute is limited and must be made public.  But contributions to groups who advertise for a candidate (by 527 tax-exempt organizations....that means you and I are subsidizing their political views), are kept secret from the public.  We don't know who they are or how much they are giving.  The process is about as clear as mud, by design.  

Likewise for money donated to either PARTY.  The party does not have to divulge who they received donations from or how much they gave, yet the party can forward funds to any candidate they want, in whatever amount they want, and it is completely NON-transparent.  Do you see where there might be some room for abuse?

I've been watching the Clinton/Sanders debate I recorded last night and I heard Hillary Clinton say something that made my jaw drop.  She said she has never been swayed by campaign contributions she has received from special interests.  (In fairness, probably all candidates from both parties will say the same, except maybe Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders, who don't rely on big special interest donations.)

Wha...wha...WHAT?

Really?  You can call Goldman Sachs or Monsanto or Exxon Mobil or any of the rest of them a lot of things, but STUPID is not one of them!  No special interest is going to give millions of dollars to a candidate without having a reasonable expectation of getting something in return.  

Do politicians think we're really dumb enough to believe that? 

S




12 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. I suppose you're right....they keep taking the bribes...er..."contributions", and we keep sending them back to Washington. "Pull my finger"

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  2. Well plenty of special interests have given money to Jeb Bush's campaign. They have to be feeling pretty stupid right now. Someone did the match to figure that Jeb(!) paid about $5,000 per vote he received in Iowa with how much he paid on TV ads, etc. Money well spent.

    As far as the Democrats go, Hillary Clinton is like one of those Hollywood superhero movies funded by loans and bonds from big banks while Bernie Sanders is an indie movie paid for by Kickstarter. And right now Kickstarter is winning.

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    1. I suspect the big money contributed to JEB! was done long ago when it was expected he would be the likely nominee. They may have jumped the gun.

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    2. They have to have some serious buyer's remorse. But it's probably tax deductible. Meanwhile he's using that money to fly on private jets and go to swanky hotels to ask people to please clap.

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  3. Scott, Scott, Scott. Approximately 1 percent of the delegates have been chosen for any candidate to receive the nomination. Give it some time. And if the Supreme Court screwed up so badly on campaign finance reform what makes you think you can solve it? Just sayin'.

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    1. I/we can't. I'm not sure it's fixable. It would take a majority of Congress to vote to fix it, which would mean the end of their political careers....ain't gonna happen!

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  4. Approving Citizens United was the worst decision the Supreme Court ever made.

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    Replies
    1. Amen, amen and amen Stephen.

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    2. Can you take another Amen, brethren? Amen...

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