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Forum Post: Campaign funding miniscule compared to government budget

Posted 2 years ago on May 19, 2012, 9:51 p.m. EST by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

As of May 18, 2012, 545 groups organized as Super PACs have reported total receipts of $204,716,872 and total independent expenditures of $111,588,684 in the 2012 cycle.

http://www.opensecrets.org/pacs/superpacs.php

the US budget is about 3.7 trillion dollars

so

205e+6 / 3.7e+12 = 5.54054054 × 10-5

Super PACs will spend about .0055% of the budget to get their hands of the government pie

that's insignificant money by comparison


further

I would suggest that publicity has more to do with news station coverage than campaign spending

one might argue that those well financed usually win but the campaign may be well financed due to news publicity

38 Comments

38 Comments


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[-] 1 points by flip (6878) 1 year ago

this is from - you can get the whole thing at znet. The Election, Economy, War, and Peace


By Noam Chomsky......It could be argued that no party speaking for the public would be viable in a society that is business-run to an unusual extent. Evidence for that is substantial. At a very general level, evidence is provided by the predictive success of political economist Thomas Ferguson’s “investment theory” of politics, which holds that policies tend to reflect the wishes of the powerful blocs that invest every four years to control the state. More specific illustrations are numerous. To mention just one, for 60 years the US has failed to ratify the core principle of international labor law, which guarantees freedom of association. Legal analysts call it “the untouchable treaty in American politics,” and observe that there has never even been any debate about the matter. And many have noted Washington’s dismissal of conventions of the International Labor Organization as contrasted with the intense dedication to enforcement of monopoly pricing rights for corporations (“intellectual property rights”). There is much to explore here, but this is not the place.

The two candidates in the Democratic primary were a woman and an African-American. That too was historic. It would have been unimaginable forty years ago. The fact that the country has become civilized enough to accept this outcome is a considerable tribute to the activism of the 1960s and its aftermath.

In some ways the election followed familiar patterns. The McCain campaign was honest enough to announce clearly that the election wouldn’t be about issues. Sarah Palin’s hairdresser received twice the salary of McCain’s foreign policy adviser, the Financial Times reported, probably an accurate reflection of significance for the campaign. Obama’s message of “hope” and “change” offered a blank slate on which supporters could write their wishes. One could search websites for position papers, but correlation of these to policies is hardly spectacular, and in any event, what enters into voters’ choices is what the campaign places front and center, as party managers know well.

The Obama campaign greatly impressed the public relations industry, which named Obama “Advertising Age's marketer of the year for 2008,” easily beating out Apple. The industry’s prime task is to ensure that uninformed consumers make irrational choices, thus undermining market theories. And it recognizes the benefits of undermining democracy the same way.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 1 year ago

Obama’s message of “hope” and “change” offered a blank slate on which supporters could write their wishes

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

here are the lyrics I changed to "What's Up"


25 years and the ivy league still

Owns presidency on capitol hill

Harvard men

Destine for Election

.

I realize now that we don't have a choice

gotta elect a fraternity voice

that is part of aristocracy

.

and they make there contacts in the college years

with the rich families and financiers

and I start to suspect

a little collusion

.

and they sift selection in the primaries

allow only choices from the ivy league

and I see at the top of the list

"What's Going ON!"

.

O ba ma's from Harvard

Romney's from Harvard

so is Gore

and Bush aswell

.

O ba ma's from Harvard

Romney's from Harvard

so is Gore

Clinton's from Yale

.

and I try,

oh my god how I try

I try everyday in this institution

.

and I see

oh it obvious to me

that choice is an illusion

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

vote Harvey Dent for President

Bush, Obama. Romney are Harvard Alumni

Auld Lang Syne the most sung song in the World

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

fraternities contact their buddies from college for help, jobs and deals

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

Harvard hires(scholarship) many of the brightest from the population

the rest are the elite 1%

I'm sure Harvard's labs and Libraries are well funded

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

they say politics happens behind closed doors

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago
[-] 3 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

6e+9/3.7e+12=0.16 % spent on campaign compared to the US budget

[-] 1 points by jimmycrackerson (940) from Blackfoot, ID 2 years ago

What does 'e' mean? is that still equal to MC squared?

[-] 3 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

in this case for scientific notation,

e denotes the number of 10s a number is multiplied by

6e+9 means 6,000,000,000 or 6 billion

3.7e+12 means 3,700,000,000,000 or 3.7 trillion

[-] 1 points by jimmycrackerson (940) from Blackfoot, ID 2 years ago

Thanks.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

no problem

I think people have trouble with scale

after all, 1 million dollars is a lot of money for one person

[-] 1 points by jimmycrackerson (940) from Blackfoot, ID 2 years ago

1 thousand dollars is a lot of money for one person in some countries.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

true

I can't say why US currency has more or less value in other countries

[-] 0 points by DKAtoday (27701) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Yeah well it is not a whole lot in this country ( USA ).

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

my monthly salary

[-] -3 points by DKAtoday (27701) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

That sucks.

No one should " bring home " less than 1600.00 a month.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

I'd say $5,000 I do live in san diego

maybe I might want children

[-] -2 points by DKAtoday (27701) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Location location location. Yeah I get your point.

Get this last time I was in Denver Colorado.

Cashiers for supermarkets made 12.00 an hour ( union )

Plumbers and carpenters and electricians were making minimum wage around 6.00 an hour at the time - unless they could get a gig in a resort town in the mountains.

Now a rundown 2 bedroom rambler ( house ) was selling for over 150,000.00.

[-] 1 points by jimmycrackerson (940) from Blackfoot, ID 2 years ago

You're right. One can make more than a thousand dollars a month and still be considered impoverished. Especially when you add a spouse and children to the equation.

[+] -4 points by factsrfun (6763) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

damn english majors design these things? you would of thought these guys would of been more friendly to math, anyway this was funny.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

the government funding of the primaries is supporting the two party system which receives all the coverage

and that is indeed that needs addressing

[-] -3 points by factsrfun (6763) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

What about geographical selection?

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

I've been mauling over my voters pamphlet

primaries in CA are June 5, Tuesday

I wish it were a state holiday so people would be voting

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

the articular is a bit confusing

it talks about the cost of elections (the process) and than includes party donations (political ads?)

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

I think it includes all money spent directly and indirectly in electing president and congress in 2012. Spending 0.16% of GDP is still a tiny faction considering the return on investment.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

be hard to scrape even 1 million dollars for most people

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 2 years ago

Sheldon Adelson and his wife donated $10 million to Gingrichs superpac. That is equivalent to 100,000 people each donating $100. Opensecrets is a great source of campaign finance information. I could spend days just skimming through the numbers. Also try:

http://maplight.org/

[-] -1 points by factsrfun (6763) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

On a national level even at $5 limit would not be too high a mark I think.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

us population 312 million is 312e+6 also is 3,12e+8

312x5=1,560 million or 1.560 billion

that quick calculation included the children

[-] 1 points by factsrfun (6763) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

not sure your point here I was just saying that getting 200,000 to kick in $5 each to show you got some support, seems reasonable, but I may have step into something I'm not up on

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

I don't think we should attach money to a vote of support

[-] -1 points by factsrfun (6763) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

By the end it will be four to five times that so more like .02%, doesn't really affect your point though. I support public funding for elections, but it is only part of the problem. Taking back the language is the bigger cause, but I am no longer sure that there are those in OWS that remember the 99%, listening for a bit.

If your point being that affecting news coverage outweighs money in an election, then yes you are correct.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

the government primaries run several election before the national elections.

This means that

one of the two primary parties gets major government paid elections

with free news coverage over several months

while resounding it's opposition of the other major party.

[-] -1 points by factsrfun (6763) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

they both do right?

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

both get to run primaries

the party currently out of office gets more news coverage

because incumbents are rarely challenged within their own party

I may be voting for Kucinich

[-] -1 points by factsrfun (6763) from Phoenix, AZ 2 years ago

true, some balance on that as some of it about beating up on each other, I agree system supports system, however the two party system exsited long before networks so more is at play than just that.