But no cents

Now this is hilarious. “Democracy Dollars,” they call ’em:

The answer to the disproportionate influence of big money is to give ordinary citizens the financial capacity to compete effectively in the political marketplace.

The place to begin is with a tax cut. Each American should get a refundable federal tax credit of $50 that they can use to make contributions to federal candidates during presidential years, and a suitably smaller sum during off-year federal elections.

“Big money,” they say. I figure, if the likes of ExxonMobil and SEIU want to piss away their treasuries in an effort to change my mind on something — which effort, incidentally, will not even come close to succeeding — let ’em.

In fact, I said so back in 1996:

No more restrictions on contributions, coupled with full disclosure of the list of contributors.

To pick an example entirely at random, if some neofascist newspaper publisher from some provincial backwater wants to pour his fortune into getting a kindred spirit into one of the seats of power, he ought to be able to — and the public should be able easily to identify the anointed one as “Mr _________’s lackey”.

Meanwhile, Rachel asks:

Didn’t whatshisname — you know the guy who took the hallowed Kennedy seat — raise a boatload of money from a boatload of little guys within hours of his debate appearance? And all of those people decided to make a contribution without first waiting for the government to give them their yearly campaign allowance. Imagine that.

You want to get “big money” out of campaigns? Get the government out of the business of granting favors.





5 comments

  1. fillyjonk »

    2 February 2010 · 10:46 am

    “Each American should get a refundable federal tax credit of $50 that they can use to make contributions to federal candidates during presidential years, and a suitably smaller sum during off-year federal elections. ”

    Only if we don’t HAVE to use it for that. Give me some of “my” money back, and then tell me I have to spend it on getting some guy elected? There’s something unappealingly circular about that.

    I’d rather take that $50 in quarters and throw them in fountains and make wishes…

  2. CGHill »

    2 February 2010 · 10:49 am

    You’d probably get better results, too.

  3. Brett »

    2 February 2010 · 11:56 am

    You want to get “big money” out of campaigns? Get the government out of the business of granting favors.

    BINGO!

  4. McGehee »

    2 February 2010 · 3:31 pm

    I ditto the bingo.

  5. Jeff Brokaw »

    2 February 2010 · 4:32 pm

    Same here. We need to get more people to understand that graft is what runs Washington, and screws us, the taxpayers.

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