Everyone’s been asking me if I’m supporting the so-called Clean Money Proposition 89 given my past views on political reform, and experience in campaign finance. I always say, without skipping a beat, that I support this proposition with no reservations at all.
Now that’s the “loud: part. The “quiet” part is “But not for the reasons the authors and supporters intend, since I just want a full employment act for political hacks.” Waitaminit! Did I say the loud part quiet and the quiet part loud? D’oh!
No really, listen! Now, of course the inevitable fight between Sort Of Funded Good People and the representatives of the Forces of Doom With More Money will wage some sort of battle. The state’s Big Important Paper will weigh in, as will its fine columnists on the relative merits. And they’ll all be as fun to read about as that whole debate over the Paint Drying On A Hot Day initiative.
That is, if the public is even reading. (No one seems to realize Stargate SG-1 is back on the air, and Lost and Battlestar Galactica and a ton of movies are coming out this fall. Do Cylons dream of electric political reform bills?)
Whee! Now, the funny thing about these kinds of initiatives is that they’re taking a hybrid idea from other states (Maine, Arizona, Massachusetts) and declaring that Their Way Is The Only Way to “clean up” politics. As I’ve said time and again, these reform efforts usually have more to do with gutting The Other Guys’ say in politics, coupled with a naive hope that the outcome of the people’s votes can be gamed to favor Their Guys. (IRV Minions, I’m looking at you….)
But let’s put aside the many Unintended Consequences we’ll be paving the Road to Hell with, and find out why I’m supporting this wild proposition. It’s simple – any time you have a system of matching funds, public funding, whatever, you change the marketplace for political products. Instead of lopsided spending by The Guy With All The Support and The Guy With No Money or Hope In Hell, thus creating a single marketplace in a given district for product, suddenly we’ll have more customers for the same products!
Think about it. Every robocall vendor, every direct mail vendor, heck every button-maker and tchotchke maker from Yreka to the Mexican Border will suddenly have lots of new people to sell stuff too. Every political hack that wants to avoid law school for another year can instead take a year off and work on the campaign of any Joe Sixpack or Sally Hempcoat running for office anywhere in the state – no matter how hopeless it is for a hippie socialist to win in “The OC” or a right wing neo-fascist to win in Berkeley, CA!
JobCorps, SchmobCorps, if politicians want to create more jobs right away, they’ll jump on board. It’s easy, and the taxpayers foot the bill!
Sure, there’s that whole issue with that pesky Constitution of the United States, and sure there’s also no guarantee that experienced people who do things as they’re done now will suddenly lose and give way to the wide-eyed hopeful dreamers who want to pass that whole “No Kitten Left Behind” bill that gets stalled in committee by the special interests, but I say, who cares?
There are a lot of robocalls and brochures I need to sell if I’m ever going to get enough money to go into real estate or the olive oil business. So quit your bitchin’ and say “Yes” to Proposition 89. I am sure my future kids will thank you when they’re getting braces, iPods, and Harvard educations. I know I will!
Pardon the gap in postings. Unlike professional bloggers who sideline as consultants, I, as a consultant who sidelines as a blogger, sometimes have to do real work during an election! More fun is coming soon though. Really!
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