Monday, October 9, 2017

Follow The Money And Stray No More

There's an old saw that seems to be truer every year: if you want answers, follow the money. More than ever, We, the People are confronted by paper trails that are green. 

I'm not gonna list the different trails....just pick one, any one and you'll get the idea. Unless you are running for town council in a town with a population under 100, you are out there raising money. Your friends are donating, they're asking their friends, so forth and so on. But anything bigger than a small-town council is gonna take more money that most people have lying around in coffee cans under the front porch. It takes outside donors, sponsors like the kind that sponsor THE PRICE IS RIGHT. It means making your candidate appear to someone with a cheque book. 

Whose cheque book is important. Really important. The hand that is writing that cheque is not doing it as a cursive exercise; they are writing that cheque because something is in it for them. This is about quid pro quo; you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours. Folks, this is true whether you are Bernie Sanders or Donald Duck. 

Some is paying for those "Paid By..." ads running on radio and television. It's infinitely easier to follow that money than the bucks shelled out for Twitter and Facebook stuff. Our own Senator, St. Amy of Klobuchar sent out an email today:
Advertisers spent $1.4 billion on online political ads in the 2016 election. But there’s currently very little scrutiny for buyers of online ads. With the news that Russia paid for a number of online ads targeted at U.S. voters (including purchases in rubles!), isn't it time we had a system of accountability for online ads that matches the one we have for TV and radio ads?
She's right, y'know. If we haven't learned anything from the Russian extravaganza, then we are fools. At the very least we should be acting on what we do know to make social media giants behave responsibly when accepting ads. Other media has to live by rules; social media should be no exception.

No matter which candidate you are supporting for whatever race, whether it be Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, or Pastafarian, make sure you know who is writing those big cheques and make damn sure you're okay with the sources. If you are uncomfortable with any source of income for your candidate of choice, go shopping for another candidate. Every single voter in this country should be paying attention to the bucko-factor as closely as he/she watches the bank balance. If you don't pay attention to that number, you have other, more pressing problems.

For the record, I am actively supporting Angie Craig in the MN 2nd District Congressional rest. I like Angie. I've gotten to know her a bit, and I like the person who sat at my kitchen table explaining why I should support her campaign. But trust me to the Nth when I tell you I will be watching her donor list like a hawk. There is nothing worse than a donation from someone who has an agenda abhorrent to me. 

So as we head into the midterm cycle, I just wanna do a public service announcement today: 

On that note, I am shutting down for the night. Monday is going to be a crazy day. Many of you will read this a bit earlier than usual, but not to worry, I am not changing any of my late-night bad habits. On the contrary, by the time you read this, I will be off on a bona fide adventure. I'll be writing about it, but right now, it's Monday morning, 1:30 a.m. 

Wifely Person's Tip o'the Week
Keep your eyes on New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. 
This is the guy who will ultimately know where the money came from 
and where it went.