/tagged/Politics/page/2

Republicans Court Female Voters By Carefully Explaining That Women Are Wrong

mumblingsage:

mswyrr:

quietandsarcastic:

Oh yeah, you gotta read this. 

Yesterday, Politico published a leaked report commissioned by two Republican lobbying groups on how the party can better attract female voters. The report, based on a recent poll of 800 female registered voters as well as a series of focus groups, is titled “Republicans and Women Voters: Huge Challenges, Real Opportunities.” The central challenge facing the Republican party is that women—particularly single women and women who have graduated from college—are “barely receptive” to its policies, and are likely to consider the party “intolerant,” “lacking in compassion,” and “stuck in the past.”

Here’s where the “real opportunity” comes in: If only the Republicans could explain to these women that they are wrong, their votes would come flooding in. The report says that it is a “lack of understanding” between women and Republicans that “closes many minds to Republican policy solutions.” Republicans can attract the female vote by attacking the Democratic claim that GOP policies do not promote “fairness” for women and dealing “honestly with any disagreement on abortion” before moving on to “other issues.”

Today, R.R. Reno, editor of First Things (a journal that promotes “economic freedom” and a “morally serious culture”), published a very helpful essay illustrating how this fresh new strategy might work in practice. Reno begins his piece with a richly-drawn portrait of a hypothetical female Democratic voter: She is a “single, 35-year-old McKinsey consultant living in suburban Chicago who thinks of herself as vulnerable and votes for enhanced social programs designed to protect against the dangers and uncertainties of life.” (Reno does not specify the number of cats she owns, but for the purposes of this discussion, let’s assume the answer is “several.”) Reno speculates that this woman (whom he has invented and preprogrammed with opinions) feels “judged” by a Republican platform that opposes gay marriage, because “she intuitively senses that being pro-traditional marriage involves asserting male-female marriage as the norm—and therefore that her life isn’t on the right path.” So she votes for the Democrat, who does not appear to be “intolerant” of her lifestyle.

Here comes the part of the exercise where Reno carefully instructs this fantasy lady liberal that she has chosen poorly, and that the Republican party is the logical choice for a woman in her circumstance. This woman is suffering from “various kinds of personal unhappiness related to the lack of clear norms for how to live,” Reno writes. She secretly “wants to get married and feels vulnerable because she isn’t and vulnerable because she’s not confident she can.” And so, actually, she should support the party that wants to force people into traditional marriages, thus improving her chances of getting married herself. (Perhaps she can marry a gay man?) If only our hypothetical cat lady could get on board, she would get a husband, the Republicans would get another married woman to add to their key demographic, and gay people would get totally screwed. (Yay?)

In short, Republicans understand women plenty—it’s women who don’t understand themselves. Sounds like a promising strategy that will work with many, many sad single ladies that Republicans have invented in their brains. Next step: Finally granting imaginary women the right to vote.

A woman can’t object to legally mandating “traditional marriage” because it’s a homophobic, misogynistic airless room from hell and/or she’s queer, no, it must be that she hasn’t had the right dicking yet/found the right man. It’s not possible for a woman to have an actual, like, ideological objection to anything.

Please ignore the long history of intellectual and ideological work done by women throughout history and all the thoughtful women talking about their diverse needs and advocating for themselves today. That’s all just hysteria!

Women are only capable of being bitter, sad, Miss Havishams with a hole in their soul only marriage to a man can fill.

Right.

Suddenly I understand very clearly how Republicans can think same-sex marriage is a threat to traditional marriage. I mean, if traditional marriage is something women have to get lured into and might break away from at any instant…’cause they’re hysterical, of course…

(via laughterkey)

This fist-shaking of everyone’s racial agenda distracts America from the larger issue that the targets of police overreaction are based less on skin color and more on an even worse Ebola-level affliction: being poor. Of course, to many in America, being a person of color is synonymous with being poor, and being poor is synonymous with being a criminal. Ironically, this misperception is true even among the poor.

And that’s how the status quo wants it.

The U.S. Census Report finds that 50 million Americans are poor. Fifty million voters is a powerful block if they ever organized in an effort to pursue their common economic goals. So, it’s crucial that those in the wealthiest One Percent keep the poor fractured by distracting them with emotional issues like immigration, abortion and gun control so they never stop to wonder how they got so screwed over for so long.

The 2014 midterm election is on track to break dark money records. The very wealthiest Americans are enjoying even more options to influence elections this year, thanks to a recent Supreme Court decision striking down aggregate contribution limits. All this is too much for campaign finance reform activist and Harvard Law professor Lawrence Lessig, who announced Thursday he’s starting a new Super PAC to end all Super PACs — the Mayday PAC.
Lessig vows that 100 percent of the money will go to candidates who want to reform campaign finance, and all overhead costs will be paid by the directors. Lessig hopes to use the maritime and aeronautical distress signal, “mayday”, as a call to action to end the growing influence that the 1 percent holds over American politics. “Our democracy is held hostage by the funders of campaigns. We’re going to pay the ransom, and get it back,” Lessig said in the launch video. “We want to build a Super PAC big enough to end all Super PACs.”
Recent studies have found that wealthy Americans’ influence over politics has grown significantly over the past few decades. Just a few hours after the launch, the Super PAC had raised nearly $50,000 — 5 percent of its $1 million goal.
Mayday PAC is not Lessig’s first venture into campaign finance reform. In 2008 he founded Change Congress, a grassroots campaign finance reform movement that is now a part of United Republic, an advocacy group in Washington, D.C. that supports anti-corruption laws. Lessig was also an avid supporter of the Occupy movement, saying it was “striking at the root” of the problems in our representative democracy. Post-occupation, Lessig is apparently now looking to bring down the system by working within it.
The 2012 election broke records for outside spending on elections, with over $300 million spent by outside groups that do not have to disclose donor information. The 2014 election is likely to surpass even that sum. On 2014 Senate elections alone, advertising spending is already 45 percent higher than the previous cycle — and nearly 60 percent of ads are funded by outside groups, according to an analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project. Over two-thirds of ads supporting Republican candidates were bankrolled by outside groups. Democrats are not far behind, with outside groups funding almost half of pro-Democrat ads.
It is worth noting that Mayday PAC is not the first Super PAC formed to take on dark money in elections. It joins America’s Super PAC For The Permanent Elimination of America’s Super PACs (ASPFTPEASP) and Friends of Democracy in playing the big money game in order to end the influence of big money.

How Egypt Can Turn the Tide on Sexual Assault

(Source: humanrightswatch)

harperperennial:

optimistsdaughter:

My chronic pain has finally eased off after a couple of bad months so now I can… sit and read in the evening for more than five minutes? How strange.

Zinn is so worth your six+ minutes.

I read The People’s History of the United States on the Metro going to work on Capitol Hill for the first 2 months of my first congressional job. It was illuminating.

harperperennial:

optimistsdaughter:

My chronic pain has finally eased off after a couple of bad months so now I can… sit and read in the evening for more than five minutes? How strange.

Zinn is so worth your six+ minutes.

I read The People’s History of the United States on the Metro going to work on Capitol Hill for the first 2 months of my first congressional job.

It was illuminating.

fuckyeahsouthasia:

perugu—-annam:

Hopefully this makes the Indian elections a little easier to understand. (x)

(via punkinchulatte)

theatlantic:

7 Million Afghans Just Dealt a Blow to the Taliban

In a nation more associated with calamity than consensus, the initial results of Saturday’s Afghan presidential election are startling.
Despite Taliban threats to attack polling stations nationwide, the same percentage of Afghans turned out to vote—roughly 58 percent, or 7 million out of 12 million eligible voters—as did Americans in the 2012 U.S. presidential race. Instead of collapsing, Afghan security forces effectively secured the vote. And a leading candidate to replace Hamid Karzai is Ashraf Ghani, a former World Bank technocrat who has a Ph.D. in cultural anthropology from Columbia University, a Lebanese Christian wife, and an acclaimed book and TED talk entitled “Fixing Failed States.”
"Relative to what we were expecting, it’s very hard to not conclude that this was a real defeat for the Taliban," Andrew Wilder, an American expert on Afghanistan, said in a telephone interview from Kabul on Monday. "And a very good day for the Afghan people."
Two forces that have long destabilized the country—its political elite and its neighbors—could easily squander the initial success. Evidence of large-scale fraud could undermine the legitimacy of the election and exacerbate long-running ethnic divides. And outside powers could continue to fund and arm the Taliban and disgruntled Afghan warlords, as they have for decades.
Read more. [Image: Tim Wimborne/Reuters]


THIS IS AWESOME.

theatlantic:

7 Million Afghans Just Dealt a Blow to the Taliban

In a nation more associated with calamity than consensus, the initial results of Saturday’s Afghan presidential election are startling.

Despite Taliban threats to attack polling stations nationwide, the same percentage of Afghans turned out to vote—roughly 58 percent, or 7 million out of 12 million eligible voters—as did Americans in the 2012 U.S. presidential race. Instead of collapsing, Afghan security forces effectively secured the vote. And a leading candidate to replace Hamid Karzai is Ashraf Ghani, a former World Bank technocrat who has a Ph.D. in cultural anthropology from Columbia University, a Lebanese Christian wife, and an acclaimed book and TED talk entitled “Fixing Failed States.”

"Relative to what we were expecting, it’s very hard to not conclude that this was a real defeat for the Taliban," Andrew Wilder, an American expert on Afghanistan, said in a telephone interview from Kabul on Monday. "And a very good day for the Afghan people."

Two forces that have long destabilized the country—its political elite and its neighbors—could easily squander the initial success. Evidence of large-scale fraud could undermine the legitimacy of the election and exacerbate long-running ethnic divides. And outside powers could continue to fund and arm the Taliban and disgruntled Afghan warlords, as they have for decades.

Read more. [Image: Tim Wimborne/Reuters]

THIS IS AWESOME.

Community Post: 7 How I Met Your Mother GIFs That Perfectly Explain The U.S. Budget Process

*Shockingly* this does nothing to actually explain the budget process. 

BUT.

But it does reinforce the idea that Republicans think physical altercations/abuse/slapping around/dare I say “torture”, is the way to go to get your way.

That’s how I found myself working a retail job at a sporting goods store—the only steady job I could find after six months of unemployment in a down economy and a news industry in upheaval. In a matter of months, I was broke, depressed, and living on food stamps. I had lost my apartment, and ended up living out of a suitcase in a guest bedroom of an extraordinarily generous family I barely knew. My cash flow consisted of coins from my piggybank and modest sums earned from odd jobs: freelance copy-editing, public relations, coordinating funerals, mowing lawns.

“Hi, I’m right here”: An open letter to Paul Ryan about poverty and empathy

Republicans Are Setting Up Fake Websites for Democratic Candidates - The Wire

wilwheaton:

The National Republican Congressional Committee appears to have set up at least 16 websites meant to appear like the official websites of Democratic candidates, spurring a debate over fair campaign tactics.

The websites appear at first glance as an official webpage for the candidate. But actually reading the text—which is more of a rarity online than you might think—reveals a different reality. On Arizona Democratic candidate Ann Kirkpatrick’s fake page, the site reads, “Kirkpatrick is a huge embarrassment to Arizona.” For Montana Democratic candidate John Lewis, the fake site flat-out says, “John Lewis is bad for Montana.”

Both sites, as well as others, have disclaimers that they are funded by the NRCC at the bottom—not technically buried, but certainly not appearing before the big donate button that users can click to send money to the NRCC.

They can’t win elections by convincing voters they have a good plan for America, so they resort to voter suppression, and dirty tricks like this.

No one is surprised.

(via laughterkey)

Liz Cheney Quits Wyoming Senate Race

shortformblog:

Cheney tried to primary Sen. Mike Enzi, but even before the current situation, it was not going well. She was polling very poorly against the incumbent.

globalvoices:

Here are three conditions that civil societies in these war-torn countries have identified in order to start the reconstruction of their political systems.
3 Suggestions for Good Governance in the Central African Republic, Madagascar and Mali

globalvoices:

Here are three conditions that civil societies in these war-torn countries have identified in order to start the reconstruction of their political systems.

3 Suggestions for Good Governance in the Central African Republic, Madagascar and Mali

Republicans Court Female Voters By Carefully Explaining That Women Are Wrong

mumblingsage:

mswyrr:

quietandsarcastic:

Oh yeah, you gotta read this. 

Yesterday, Politico published a leaked report commissioned by two Republican lobbying groups on how the party can better attract female voters. The report, based on a recent poll of 800 female registered voters as well as a series of focus groups, is titled “Republicans and Women Voters: Huge Challenges, Real Opportunities.” The central challenge facing the Republican party is that women—particularly single women and women who have graduated from college—are “barely receptive” to its policies, and are likely to consider the party “intolerant,” “lacking in compassion,” and “stuck in the past.”

Here’s where the “real opportunity” comes in: If only the Republicans could explain to these women that they are wrong, their votes would come flooding in. The report says that it is a “lack of understanding” between women and Republicans that “closes many minds to Republican policy solutions.” Republicans can attract the female vote by attacking the Democratic claim that GOP policies do not promote “fairness” for women and dealing “honestly with any disagreement on abortion” before moving on to “other issues.”

Today, R.R. Reno, editor of First Things (a journal that promotes “economic freedom” and a “morally serious culture”), published a very helpful essay illustrating how this fresh new strategy might work in practice. Reno begins his piece with a richly-drawn portrait of a hypothetical female Democratic voter: She is a “single, 35-year-old McKinsey consultant living in suburban Chicago who thinks of herself as vulnerable and votes for enhanced social programs designed to protect against the dangers and uncertainties of life.” (Reno does not specify the number of cats she owns, but for the purposes of this discussion, let’s assume the answer is “several.”) Reno speculates that this woman (whom he has invented and preprogrammed with opinions) feels “judged” by a Republican platform that opposes gay marriage, because “she intuitively senses that being pro-traditional marriage involves asserting male-female marriage as the norm—and therefore that her life isn’t on the right path.” So she votes for the Democrat, who does not appear to be “intolerant” of her lifestyle.

Here comes the part of the exercise where Reno carefully instructs this fantasy lady liberal that she has chosen poorly, and that the Republican party is the logical choice for a woman in her circumstance. This woman is suffering from “various kinds of personal unhappiness related to the lack of clear norms for how to live,” Reno writes. She secretly “wants to get married and feels vulnerable because she isn’t and vulnerable because she’s not confident she can.” And so, actually, she should support the party that wants to force people into traditional marriages, thus improving her chances of getting married herself. (Perhaps she can marry a gay man?) If only our hypothetical cat lady could get on board, she would get a husband, the Republicans would get another married woman to add to their key demographic, and gay people would get totally screwed. (Yay?)

In short, Republicans understand women plenty—it’s women who don’t understand themselves. Sounds like a promising strategy that will work with many, many sad single ladies that Republicans have invented in their brains. Next step: Finally granting imaginary women the right to vote.

A woman can’t object to legally mandating “traditional marriage” because it’s a homophobic, misogynistic airless room from hell and/or she’s queer, no, it must be that she hasn’t had the right dicking yet/found the right man. It’s not possible for a woman to have an actual, like, ideological objection to anything.

Please ignore the long history of intellectual and ideological work done by women throughout history and all the thoughtful women talking about their diverse needs and advocating for themselves today. That’s all just hysteria!

Women are only capable of being bitter, sad, Miss Havishams with a hole in their soul only marriage to a man can fill.

Right.

Suddenly I understand very clearly how Republicans can think same-sex marriage is a threat to traditional marriage. I mean, if traditional marriage is something women have to get lured into and might break away from at any instant…’cause they’re hysterical, of course…

(via laughterkey)

This fist-shaking of everyone’s racial agenda distracts America from the larger issue that the targets of police overreaction are based less on skin color and more on an even worse Ebola-level affliction: being poor. Of course, to many in America, being a person of color is synonymous with being poor, and being poor is synonymous with being a criminal. Ironically, this misperception is true even among the poor.

And that’s how the status quo wants it.

The U.S. Census Report finds that 50 million Americans are poor. Fifty million voters is a powerful block if they ever organized in an effort to pursue their common economic goals. So, it’s crucial that those in the wealthiest One Percent keep the poor fractured by distracting them with emotional issues like immigration, abortion and gun control so they never stop to wonder how they got so screwed over for so long.

The 2014 midterm election is on track to break dark money records. The very wealthiest Americans are enjoying even more options to influence elections this year, thanks to a recent Supreme Court decision striking down aggregate contribution limits. All this is too much for campaign finance reform activist and Harvard Law professor Lawrence Lessig, who announced Thursday he’s starting a new Super PAC to end all Super PACs — the Mayday PAC.
Lessig vows that 100 percent of the money will go to candidates who want to reform campaign finance, and all overhead costs will be paid by the directors. Lessig hopes to use the maritime and aeronautical distress signal, “mayday”, as a call to action to end the growing influence that the 1 percent holds over American politics. “Our democracy is held hostage by the funders of campaigns. We’re going to pay the ransom, and get it back,” Lessig said in the launch video. “We want to build a Super PAC big enough to end all Super PACs.”
Recent studies have found that wealthy Americans’ influence over politics has grown significantly over the past few decades. Just a few hours after the launch, the Super PAC had raised nearly $50,000 — 5 percent of its $1 million goal.
Mayday PAC is not Lessig’s first venture into campaign finance reform. In 2008 he founded Change Congress, a grassroots campaign finance reform movement that is now a part of United Republic, an advocacy group in Washington, D.C. that supports anti-corruption laws. Lessig was also an avid supporter of the Occupy movement, saying it was “striking at the root” of the problems in our representative democracy. Post-occupation, Lessig is apparently now looking to bring down the system by working within it.
The 2012 election broke records for outside spending on elections, with over $300 million spent by outside groups that do not have to disclose donor information. The 2014 election is likely to surpass even that sum. On 2014 Senate elections alone, advertising spending is already 45 percent higher than the previous cycle — and nearly 60 percent of ads are funded by outside groups, according to an analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project. Over two-thirds of ads supporting Republican candidates were bankrolled by outside groups. Democrats are not far behind, with outside groups funding almost half of pro-Democrat ads.
It is worth noting that Mayday PAC is not the first Super PAC formed to take on dark money in elections. It joins America’s Super PAC For The Permanent Elimination of America’s Super PACs (ASPFTPEASP) and Friends of Democracy in playing the big money game in order to end the influence of big money.

(Source: sandandglass, via upworthy)

How Egypt Can Turn the Tide on Sexual Assault

(Source: humanrightswatch)

harperperennial:

optimistsdaughter:

My chronic pain has finally eased off after a couple of bad months so now I can… sit and read in the evening for more than five minutes? How strange.

Zinn is so worth your six+ minutes.

I read The People’s History of the United States on the Metro going to work on Capitol Hill for the first 2 months of my first congressional job. It was illuminating.

harperperennial:

optimistsdaughter:

My chronic pain has finally eased off after a couple of bad months so now I can… sit and read in the evening for more than five minutes? How strange.

Zinn is so worth your six+ minutes.

I read The People’s History of the United States on the Metro going to work on Capitol Hill for the first 2 months of my first congressional job.

It was illuminating.

fuckyeahsouthasia:

perugu—-annam:

Hopefully this makes the Indian elections a little easier to understand. (x)

(via punkinchulatte)

theatlantic:

7 Million Afghans Just Dealt a Blow to the Taliban

In a nation more associated with calamity than consensus, the initial results of Saturday’s Afghan presidential election are startling.
Despite Taliban threats to attack polling stations nationwide, the same percentage of Afghans turned out to vote—roughly 58 percent, or 7 million out of 12 million eligible voters—as did Americans in the 2012 U.S. presidential race. Instead of collapsing, Afghan security forces effectively secured the vote. And a leading candidate to replace Hamid Karzai is Ashraf Ghani, a former World Bank technocrat who has a Ph.D. in cultural anthropology from Columbia University, a Lebanese Christian wife, and an acclaimed book and TED talk entitled “Fixing Failed States.”
"Relative to what we were expecting, it’s very hard to not conclude that this was a real defeat for the Taliban," Andrew Wilder, an American expert on Afghanistan, said in a telephone interview from Kabul on Monday. "And a very good day for the Afghan people."
Two forces that have long destabilized the country—its political elite and its neighbors—could easily squander the initial success. Evidence of large-scale fraud could undermine the legitimacy of the election and exacerbate long-running ethnic divides. And outside powers could continue to fund and arm the Taliban and disgruntled Afghan warlords, as they have for decades.
Read more. [Image: Tim Wimborne/Reuters]


THIS IS AWESOME.

theatlantic:

7 Million Afghans Just Dealt a Blow to the Taliban

In a nation more associated with calamity than consensus, the initial results of Saturday’s Afghan presidential election are startling.

Despite Taliban threats to attack polling stations nationwide, the same percentage of Afghans turned out to vote—roughly 58 percent, or 7 million out of 12 million eligible voters—as did Americans in the 2012 U.S. presidential race. Instead of collapsing, Afghan security forces effectively secured the vote. And a leading candidate to replace Hamid Karzai is Ashraf Ghani, a former World Bank technocrat who has a Ph.D. in cultural anthropology from Columbia University, a Lebanese Christian wife, and an acclaimed book and TED talk entitled “Fixing Failed States.”

"Relative to what we were expecting, it’s very hard to not conclude that this was a real defeat for the Taliban," Andrew Wilder, an American expert on Afghanistan, said in a telephone interview from Kabul on Monday. "And a very good day for the Afghan people."

Two forces that have long destabilized the country—its political elite and its neighbors—could easily squander the initial success. Evidence of large-scale fraud could undermine the legitimacy of the election and exacerbate long-running ethnic divides. And outside powers could continue to fund and arm the Taliban and disgruntled Afghan warlords, as they have for decades.

Read more. [Image: Tim Wimborne/Reuters]

THIS IS AWESOME.

Community Post: 7 How I Met Your Mother GIFs That Perfectly Explain The U.S. Budget Process

*Shockingly* this does nothing to actually explain the budget process. 

BUT.

But it does reinforce the idea that Republicans think physical altercations/abuse/slapping around/dare I say “torture”, is the way to go to get your way.

That’s how I found myself working a retail job at a sporting goods store—the only steady job I could find after six months of unemployment in a down economy and a news industry in upheaval. In a matter of months, I was broke, depressed, and living on food stamps. I had lost my apartment, and ended up living out of a suitcase in a guest bedroom of an extraordinarily generous family I barely knew. My cash flow consisted of coins from my piggybank and modest sums earned from odd jobs: freelance copy-editing, public relations, coordinating funerals, mowing lawns.

“Hi, I’m right here”: An open letter to Paul Ryan about poverty and empathy

Republicans Are Setting Up Fake Websites for Democratic Candidates - The Wire

wilwheaton:

The National Republican Congressional Committee appears to have set up at least 16 websites meant to appear like the official websites of Democratic candidates, spurring a debate over fair campaign tactics.

The websites appear at first glance as an official webpage for the candidate. But actually reading the text—which is more of a rarity online than you might think—reveals a different reality. On Arizona Democratic candidate Ann Kirkpatrick’s fake page, the site reads, “Kirkpatrick is a huge embarrassment to Arizona.” For Montana Democratic candidate John Lewis, the fake site flat-out says, “John Lewis is bad for Montana.”

Both sites, as well as others, have disclaimers that they are funded by the NRCC at the bottom—not technically buried, but certainly not appearing before the big donate button that users can click to send money to the NRCC.

They can’t win elections by convincing voters they have a good plan for America, so they resort to voter suppression, and dirty tricks like this.

No one is surprised.

(via laughterkey)

Liz Cheney Quits Wyoming Senate Race

shortformblog:

Cheney tried to primary Sen. Mike Enzi, but even before the current situation, it was not going well. She was polling very poorly against the incumbent.

globalvoices:

Here are three conditions that civil societies in these war-torn countries have identified in order to start the reconstruction of their political systems.
3 Suggestions for Good Governance in the Central African Republic, Madagascar and Mali

globalvoices:

Here are three conditions that civil societies in these war-torn countries have identified in order to start the reconstruction of their political systems.

3 Suggestions for Good Governance in the Central African Republic, Madagascar and Mali

"

This fist-shaking of everyone’s racial agenda distracts America from the larger issue that the targets of police overreaction are based less on skin color and more on an even worse Ebola-level affliction: being poor. Of course, to many in America, being a person of color is synonymous with being poor, and being poor is synonymous with being a criminal. Ironically, this misperception is true even among the poor.

And that’s how the status quo wants it.

The U.S. Census Report finds that 50 million Americans are poor. Fifty million voters is a powerful block if they ever organized in an effort to pursue their common economic goals. So, it’s crucial that those in the wealthiest One Percent keep the poor fractured by distracting them with emotional issues like immigration, abortion and gun control so they never stop to wonder how they got so screwed over for so long.

"
"The 2014 midterm election is on track to break dark money records. The very wealthiest Americans are enjoying even more options to influence elections this year, thanks to a recent Supreme Court decision striking down aggregate contribution limits. All this is too much for campaign finance reform activist and Harvard Law professor Lawrence Lessig, who announced Thursday he’s starting a new Super PAC to end all Super PACs — the Mayday PAC.
Lessig vows that 100 percent of the money will go to candidates who want to reform campaign finance, and all overhead costs will be paid by the directors. Lessig hopes to use the maritime and aeronautical distress signal, “mayday”, as a call to action to end the growing influence that the 1 percent holds over American politics. “Our democracy is held hostage by the funders of campaigns. We’re going to pay the ransom, and get it back,” Lessig said in the launch video. “We want to build a Super PAC big enough to end all Super PACs.”
Recent studies have found that wealthy Americans’ influence over politics has grown significantly over the past few decades. Just a few hours after the launch, the Super PAC had raised nearly $50,000 — 5 percent of its $1 million goal.
Mayday PAC is not Lessig’s first venture into campaign finance reform. In 2008 he founded Change Congress, a grassroots campaign finance reform movement that is now a part of United Republic, an advocacy group in Washington, D.C. that supports anti-corruption laws. Lessig was also an avid supporter of the Occupy movement, saying it was “striking at the root” of the problems in our representative democracy. Post-occupation, Lessig is apparently now looking to bring down the system by working within it.
The 2012 election broke records for outside spending on elections, with over $300 million spent by outside groups that do not have to disclose donor information. The 2014 election is likely to surpass even that sum. On 2014 Senate elections alone, advertising spending is already 45 percent higher than the previous cycle — and nearly 60 percent of ads are funded by outside groups, according to an analysis by the Wesleyan Media Project. Over two-thirds of ads supporting Republican candidates were bankrolled by outside groups. Democrats are not far behind, with outside groups funding almost half of pro-Democrat ads.
It is worth noting that Mayday PAC is not the first Super PAC formed to take on dark money in elections. It joins America’s Super PAC For The Permanent Elimination of America’s Super PACs (ASPFTPEASP) and Friends of Democracy in playing the big money game in order to end the influence of big money."
"That’s how I found myself working a retail job at a sporting goods store—the only steady job I could find after six months of unemployment in a down economy and a news industry in upheaval. In a matter of months, I was broke, depressed, and living on food stamps. I had lost my apartment, and ended up living out of a suitcase in a guest bedroom of an extraordinarily generous family I barely knew. My cash flow consisted of coins from my piggybank and modest sums earned from odd jobs: freelance copy-editing, public relations, coordinating funerals, mowing lawns."

About:

I read. I write. I spend all together too much time on the internet. I talk incessantly about books, TV and movies. I have written for Hello Giggles, Huffington Post, The Mary Sue, Buzzfeed, and am currently writing for Nerdist. I tweet frequently as Bookoisseur. I also have a blog at Bookoisseur Writes.

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