First the info, an excellent post at Balloon Juice. The author brings her perspective as a lawyer and a campaign treasurer for a local candidate on the Rickett scheme (If you’re not sure, for now it’s a freshly killed zombie revolving around the Rev Wright and Obama). She framed this really well using multimedia, beginning with this conclusion:
The 54-page proposal was professionally bound and illustrated with color photographs, indicating that it is far beyond a mere discussion.It was also designed to flatter and stroke the billionaire. The plan is titled “The Ricketts Plan To End His Spending For Good”. The billionaire’s name is on it. He’d be forever credited with “bringing down Obama”, and while being a kingmaker is profitable in terms of access and raw lobbying clout, it’s also probably very ego-gratifying.
I’ve actually thought about this. The billionaires aren’t the only douche-bags, it’s the people cooking up these proposals. They’re sales pitches from salespeople who have gained access to a wealthy listener. The idea is to get his or her’s money. Some of these schemes are probably more legit than others. It’s conceivable the billionaire could even be swindled — not that that keeps me up at night. At the very least a whole new industry is emerging, it’s growing, and it’s not regulated at all.
Haven’t we had some recent setbacks with unregulated, growing side industries wreaking havoc? But I digress. The author is the one that got me to thinking about this today and she finishes up:
As unlimited money pours in, and the “campaign industrial complex” of lawyers, consultants and pollsters gets larger and larger and more and more entrenched, how likely is it that we’re ever going to get any campaign finance reform? What happens to this industry if we go to public financing of campaigns, or even limit or regulate PACS? What was the cut that was to go to the consultants and the pollsters and the rest who were involved in the proposal for the Obama smear? 15% of 10 million? Where is all this money going? Who (else) benefits from the piles of unregulated and unlimited cash that are pouring in, other than the millionaire and billionaire donors, I mean?
Excellent question. Now the cynicism, why can’t we have a pac or super pac? It doesn’t even have to be big. A few thousand dollars would do it for starters. Bottom being the bottom line: unless you are famous or inside the DC game, your single voice just doesn’t matter that much. Small donations are great and yes, please vote for the candidate, but those kinds of donations usually work through a website, you won’t likely talk to the person, or any person, much less make any kind of case to them.
We might, we could. It would cost either a bunch of people a little money or a few people a little more. Not that I want to run that, but I might know someone who can explain how it would work, if we FTB/skeptics ever had the inclination.