Tag Archives: Election

Please explain how participatory democracy is bad, again

The Washington Post has an article on some folks complaining about millions of Americans donating little sums of money to their preferred political candidate.

Sen. Barack Obama‘s record-breaking $150 million fundraising performance in September has for the first time prompted questions about whether presidential candidates should be permitted to collect huge sums of money through faceless credit card transactions over the Internet.

I don’t know how the credit card transactions can be so faceless. When I try to use a credit card online, the name and mailing address I provide is supposed to be the same as the one on the credit card company’s record, or they won’t process the transaction. Makes it very difficult for a “Mickey Mouse” to anonymously donate to anyone.  Of course, I suppose that a donor can request to be listed as “Mickey Mouse”, for whatever reason, maybe to avoid donation caps, but the campaign has the legal name of the donor in its records and should be able to refund anyone who has exceeded the cap. More than likely, someone doesn’t want to known publicly as supporting a candidate. If the campaign publishes its list of donors with the name on the credit card and not some pseudonym then there is some immediate transparency.Or maybe list the real names of donors that exceed a certain limit in order to protect the donor that doesn’t want to be publicly associated with a candidate.

This is democracy in action – 3 million citizens donating $50 each to the candidate of their choice. It is poetry in democracy.

I would think a bigger issue would be the folks that are donating large chunks of cash in person to campaign reps, but that sounds like the way it has been done in the past and will continue in the future. We keep track of those donations, don’t we guys?

Me thinks that the party that couldn’t raise a pittance online is going to be a whining pain, until they figure out how to game the system, or what online means.