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Friday, March 31, 2006

Full Disclosure

The GOP is about to put the kibosh on 527's just in time for the mid-term elections, trying to limit the influence of people like MoveOn.org. I think the whole idea of campaign finance reform is a waste of time - it was initiated after Watergate in order to "clean up" politics, and it has been about as effective as the War On Drugs.

I have a different approach - remove all limits on campaign financing but mandate full disclosure of all donations, direct or in-kind. Many politicians are in this pocket or that pocket anyway, I say let's be completely honest with the system. If labor wants their guy in Congress and they're willing to bankroll him for $100,000 then let them, and let his potential constituents know that labor is backing him. If his constituents object then they'll let him know at the poll, but if they're union members themselves then it will work to his advantage. If Goldman-Sachs wants their man in Congress then let them pony up whatever they want to invest in a Congressman - and let the voters know who is investing in their Congressman. If they object then they'll let him know at the polls, but if they're part of the banking and finance industry then that can work to his advantage.

Bottm line for me is this - these artificial rules presuppose an ignorant public that needs to be protected from itself. I believe the public should be dealt with honestly, that all the pertinent information should be presented to the public for their informed consent. If the public then chooses to make an ignorant decision then they will get the leadership that they deserve, but at least the process was honest. That's my objective and my thoughts, what about you?

Emancipated by Athanasius @ 7:25 AM

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