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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Friday, October 26, 2012

$2,000,000,000

Imagine what we could do with the billions being dropped on the presidential campaign and the host of elections across the nation?

Yep, billions. The New York Times is reporting the candidates have or will raise $1 billion each on the 2012 campaign. That doesn't even count the millions more raised and being spent by the super PACs or by candidates like Elizabeth Warren and Scott Brown.

How many teachers could be hired with that cash flowing into attacks ads? How many hungry people could be fed? How many doctor visits could be paid for?

With the nation mired in an economic malaise caused by reckless behavior in our financial industry, that community's response has been to funnel millions into the campaign of candidates like Mitt Romney and Scott Brown, who they firmly believe have their backs in their effort to rollback the regulations designed from allowing it to happen again.

It's not enough to blame Citizens United, the horrific Supreme Court decision that equates cash with free speech. Barack Obama raised and spent $740 million in 2008 before the decision opened the spigots for the secretive funds, many of which don't need to reveal their contributors.

But the decision did allow the super rich to open their checkbooks to push for their interests. The classic case may be that of Las Vegas mogul Sheldon Adelson, who may spend as much as $100 million on candidates ranging from Newt Gingrich to Mitt Romney in an effort to influence the vote.

In Adelson's case, the payoff may be as high as a $2 billion tax cut. In his mind, it's probably a wise investment, knowing you have to spend money to make money.

What's even more sobering is the $2 billion in this campaign is chump change compared to what industries have dropped on influencing legislators and legislation over the last 14 years.

What we could do with this money -- as individuals or as a nation -- is mind-boggling. But not anywhere near as depressing as the realization of how we are squandering our wealth on legalized corruption.

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1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

People who have it, don't even miss it when they give it away. If they did't give it to the campaign, they'd buy another house out of the country, $200,000 foreign cars, $900 dresses, boats, airplanes, paintings etc. None of which trickles down. They have theirs...too bad about you. It's an attitude that has existed from the beginning of time.

November 05, 2012 8:17 PM  

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