Eden Hill Journal

Comments, dreams, stories, and rantings from a middle-aged native of Maine living on a shoestring and a prayer in the woods of Maine. My portion of the family farm is to be known as Eden Hill Farm just because I want to call it that and because that's the closest thing to the truth that I could come up with. If you enjoy what I write, email me or make a comment. If you enjoy Eden Hill, come visit.

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Location: Maine, United States

Friday, April 07, 2006

Buying Elections

There's something bugging me about all this talk of campaign finance reform. The latest proposal for campaign finance reform is that the Republicans will have a huge financial advantage in the upcoming elections, this year and in 2008. Senator McCain himself, campaign finance reform architect, could gain from that advantage if he wins the 2008 primary for president.
What bugs me is that the Democrats are crying in their beer about this instead of celebrating it. The reason they're crying is because of the underlying assumption that the voters in America are bought with campaign spending. While that may well be the case now that so much money is spent on TV ads and so many voters rely only on advertising for name recognition at the polls, should Democrats assume that this is the only way to win elections? Isn't that an insult to voters and to democracy itself?
Isn't there another way to run a campaign?
I mean, for instance, suppose the entire Democratic Party did the right thing. Suppose they limited campaign contributions in such a way that every Democrat who got elected owed nobody any favors. That IS the right way, is it not? So suppose they actually ran their campaigns that way. Nobody can contribute more than $5,000 to any one candidate and no candidate is to accept any campaign contributions that have strings attached.
Republicans can't run campaigns that way. Republicans don't have grass-roots support. They depend on campaign contributions with strings attached.
So if the Democrats actually ran their campaigns the right way, the ethical way, they could turn on Republicans and say, "Look at all the money they are spending on TV ads making them look so clean and us look so dirty. Where did they get all that money?"
Then Democrats could actually get out and stump for votes. Go out and meet the people in person and have those people they meet go out and go to people's homes and meeting places and talk truth about the candidates and the issues. Run clean campaigns and let the Republicans try to win by being filthy.
Then let the voters decide what kind of people they want representing them, independent or corrupt.
Of course TV networks that aren't getting bribed by Democrat advertising would mutilate those candidates. But isn't it time the American people understood that's how the TV networks operate?

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