April 27, 2016 at 6:40 pm #19629missing_kskdParticipant
A timeline on the PAC’s website says that it plans to form local search committees to recruit organizers and candidates who are new to politics. (Sanders, for his part, has served in Congress for 26 years.) The PAC says it will codify various progressive policies in a platform that its slate of candidates must support.
Zack Exley, one of the PAC’s founding organizers and a senior Sanders adviser until a few weeks ago, said Brand New Congress can accomplish its goals because Sanders has shown that grassroots candidates who weren’t taken seriously in the past can recruit thousands of volunteers and raise tens of millions of dollars online.
Politics is going to change people.April 27, 2016 at 7:39 pm #19632VitalogyParticipant
Unfortunately it won’t.
We’ve heard this sales pitch before and it’s nothing more than promises that have no chance of coming to fruition.April 28, 2016 at 5:17 pm #19646LurkingGrendelParticipant
Until Citizens United is overturned, along with a host of other troubling political decisions going back decades that are run by serious money, nothing at all is going to change.
Idealism is fine; right up until the point it begins to damage reality.April 28, 2016 at 6:28 pm #19650missing_kskdParticipant
I’m not so sure of that.
Past efforts tapped into what I will call traditional money. We’ve seen ’em flash up and fail. I share the skepticism expressed by Vitalogy above.
I honestly do not hold high hopes for CU to be overturned anytime soon. We’ve got efforts like WolfPAC chipping away at the problem. And I’m in on those. Never hurts to have multiple ways to get around the problem.
Does anyone know how this recent SCOTUS nominee would rule on such a thing?
In any case, SCOTUS is important, and ongoing activism to get it changed, raise awareness, etc… is all important. Won’t happen, unless the efforts all continue.
As for damaging reality…
That’s a very interesting observation. Given the law of the land right now, directly funding better politics is actually normal and expected. If we don’t like our choices when we vote, we fund better ones. Simple as that.
We’ve got the usual, traditional money funding choices, and now we’ve got ordinary people funding other choices.
Not a bad thing, from where I stand.
Let’s say this effort gains traction. There are several million of us willing to fund politics. I’m perfectly willing to do that. Setup a recurring, and let it go. They can have some amount for as long as they need it actually.
A handful of millions of people doing that could fund a lot of contests! They could win a lot of them too. it won’t cost anyone involved much at all.
The people behind this are looking hard at that model. In the past, getting dollars from people hasn’t proved out. This time, given a compelling message, it definitely has proved out nicely. It may be that people money works for those willing to align with the people.
The Sanders campaign is on par with any campaign, and it’s on small donations too. The cap on all of that is in the billions. More than enough to pay, given people will stay in it on a small, recurring basis. For most, it’s like a Netflix subscription. Not even a second thought. Why not?
Here’s the interesting thing for me:
Yup. Corporations have tossed billions into government and have gotten back trillions in returns. That’s quite a nice investment.
If people toss in money, the cost of doing all of that goes up. From an investment standpoint, the corporations would easily double up on their spends. The returns are still off the charts great in most cases.
But… those returns are predicated on the idea of legislators being chained to fundraising, promises, and in general, keeping their seat safe, and all the usual stuff nobody likes very much.
However, is there a ceiling? Say the money does double up. Would it work? Where is the saturation point, and how does that compare to direct, people to people communications and activism?
Honestly, they could run wall to wall ADS on TV and completely miss me and a ton of people under 35. Might as well waste it, and that’s increasingly true as demographics change. Incoming people aren’t using traditional media like we do.
A ton of the organizing and outreach in the Bernie campaign has been Internet: Facebook, Vine, Reddit, Twitter, etc… There are some new tools in development too. Those could branch away from the defaults used today. Lists, etc… don’t really have to be centralized, shared…
Then there is how the legisator values their time. You all saw the John Oliver thing I put here right?
Most of them drop 2-4 hours per day, sitting at a grim desk, getting taps on their shoulder from their “minder”, who is there to keep their dollars / minute metrics up. I’m appalled, and had no real idea prior to Oliver doing his piece on how all that really works.
Say people money frees one from that call center. Just don’t do it, or do it just enough to pay party dues, and such. That’s a mere fraction of the time! Could be lots of days with no call time required at all! What does that look like for them? Maybe they can read legislation now, or actually hold a town hall, or do other things that would be meaningful governance.
Or… say they do vote on something that ends up impacting a lot of people. When those people spend hard against them, perhaps running a challenger early, they get doomed to even more time in that call center. The grim gets more grim.
There seems to be some limits on this stuff. While the available money for politics seems infinite. In practical terms, there are likely saturation points. And if that’s true, then people funded candidates that win their contests hold a basic advantage over their peers and would be free to do the public service of government where competing interests are far more balanced than they are today.
I’m going to watch it and see what they do and what they have learned from the Sanders campaign.
As for damaging reality. Nah. There simply is reality. A lot of the world lives in very different realities, some better than ours, some a lot worse.
It’s entirely possible for the US to do much better for labor and the middle class than it currently does. That is a reality.
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