Money in Political Campaigns

Any individual who has poked even a finger into the current of campaign politics has discovered an inundation of fund-raising emails, letters and phone calls from the NATIONAL COMMITTEE (RNC, DNC) of each party. One assumes that this cash contribution is a voter’s right. However, the real campaign cash balance is maintained by special interests like corporations and investors who are the real source of hundreds of millions in donations to campaign financing.

One of the more benign exposures of this plutocracy is when the email says, “We’ve found a 600 percent match for your donation!” Who among us can match six times a national fund-raising effort? To mariner, this is just a way for candidates to hide big money that otherwise would be openly contributed from Political Action Committees (PACs) and corporations – in other words, a favor or policy expectation is the real purpose – not just a citizen vote.

Mariner has challenged the concept of national fund-raising many times on the blog. Consequently, he will not go into elaborate philosophical and pragmatic explanations of why special interest fund raising is destructive to democracy. Simply, this is what must be done to improve democracy as a tool to manage the peoples’ governments:

  • Federal, nationwide election campaigns are funded only by Federal tax dollars; the Federal Government pays for all Federal election campaigns. This includes constraints on private and local fund-raising for nationwide offices.
  • State, district, county and local campaigns may be funded only by entities within the jurisdiction of the specific office to be elected.
  • All elections, Federal, state and local, are limited to a six month time limit. Except within this time limit, no funds may be used for any purpose associated with elections including television, postal mail, shipping, telephone or any other source of communication.
  • Voting should allow electronic voting authorized by an algorithm based on identifiers within driver’s license, passport and personal banking. While this may seem unfair to those who live on the bottom fringe of society, their abuse is a separate issue that would be addressed in an effort for everyone to participate equally in today’s Internet world – including electronic voting.

So, if the reader is of like mind, send donations to . . .

Ancient Mariner


2016 – A Signal Election

In the last post about lawless gun ownership, the mariner suggested that 2016 was a signal election where serious change may be possible. This perception is still true. However, attacking the gun issue will require more than a compromised registration solution. The real issue is that money is awash in elections at all levels of campaigning. A quick and simple way to disrupt the control of money is to limit a candidate’s funds to the region for which they would be responsible if elected. We would live in a fantasy world if campaign funds were required to be net zero balances – that is no funds can be carried over to the next campaign, making campaigning a fair activity that may improve turnover in legislative bodies.

If a Senator was campaigning for office in Ohio, fund raising would be limited to Ohio; similarly, a state legislator campaigning for state office could only receive funding from his or her district. If such legislation were passed, candidates would not be able to depend on arbitrary corporations like the NRA. Wherever NRA headquarters is located, the NRA could contribute only to that district’s campaigns. For a set of issues that can easily be remedied in 2016, search mariner’s archives for a January 17 2014 post titled “The Big Picture.”

Ancient Mariner