Saturday, June 16, 2007

There Is Not Enough Money In Politics

Under the current system, $2,000 donors are basically worth 80 donors who will give $25 each. It does make the system tilt towards the people who have more money. This rationale is changing some with bundling on the internet, but corporate donors often get their phone calls returned first.

Our politics could be transformed, drastically in this country if ever a movement to organize the small donors in a massive way would be brought to fruition. If 1,000,000 people committed during an election cycle to bundling $2 a day together for a political action committee, the power would be ground shaking in scope. This is less than a cup of starbucks coffee as many people know. There are 1,000,000 people who could afford this.

It would be ActBlue on Acid. $7,000,000 a week to 2 different campaigns. Candidates would have to convince the members of the group that they were worthy of the coinage, and the members would agree to vote, and donate to the candidates that they choose. They are of course free to give to other candidates as well.

208 candidates in one cycle deeply in debt to such a grass roots group would feel beholden to them. This would be one of the most powerful political forces in the nation. Individually, it would be relatively cheap. It would also make people feel like they were part of something larger. Giving your $7 to a candidate knowing it is part of $7,000,000 satisfies much more than another $200 individual campaign check that you right for a candidate you believe in. That $7 will go much further in getting your values addressed than any amount you can give under the individual limit as well.

Splinter internet groups could form to do the same for movies, books, tv. If one million people committed to seeing a progressive movie each month, that movie would generate more buzz. In some weeks, 50,000 people buying a book will make it the NY Times #1 best seller. One million people watching Keith Olbermann every night, calling and writing MSNBC continually promising to support a progressive in the time slot after him, might change the programming direction.

The internet has changed politics in the past few years. It's greatest potential has yet to be tapped.