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$ 150 million worth of speech

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5 Responses

  1. TRE says:

    Note that they don’t specificly which average they are talking about.

  2. A.W. says:

    Um… or here is possibility #2… a substantial part of those small donations are actually larger donations broken into little chunks.

    Which only demonstrates how completely wrongheaded all this campaign finance reform is, anyway. You can’t take money out of politics without squelching freedom in general.

    If you limit direct donations, then the big money guys will just give to 527s.

    If you limit 527s, and limit speech to established channels, then interests will buy their own network (see, e.g. Air America and NRA’s cable channel).

    And then from there the only way to control that money is to control the channels themselves.

    And so on.

    We are halfway down that fascist road and it is time to stop going further down it, back up and restore freedom.

    I think philosophically the mistake we have been making here is thinking of this in terms of speech, and not press. But even though TV and radio are spoken words, both TV, Radio and the press represent mass media. In the case of the freedom of the press, there is no question that an infrastructure is needed and thus you can violate freedom of the press by controlling their infrastructure.

    The numerous cases reducing liablity for defamation of public figures was a classic example of this recognition. Lawsuits cost money and thus it was recognized that lawsuits were a mortal threat to freedom of the press, thus the courts curtailed the suits. It is hard to see how the outflow of money threatens the freedom of expression, but not the reduction of the inflow of money.

  3. bill says:

    @A.W.:

    “a substantial part of those small donations are actually larger donations broken into little chunks”

    Remember, that the campaign claims – and even Fox News reports — over 630,000 new contributors in Sept., not 630,000 different contributions. If you have proof of some kind of chicanery, cite it. Otherwise, you’re just casting out unsourced sleaze.

    http://elections.foxnews.com/2008/10/20/obama-raises-record-breaking-m/

  4. A.W. says:

    Bill

    You should also check out NRO’s The Corner. They have been covering how obama’s website intentionally removed measures to protect against fraud in their online donation process so that people can donate to him with names like Kim Jung Il, and so on.