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Illustration of dirty money
Money still doesn't trump people.
David Nir wrote earlier about the millions of dollars the Kochs have wasted in Michigan this cycle:
Remarkably, despite all that heavy ad spending (and Obamacare lies exposed as b.s.) from Americans for Prosperity, [Democratic Senate candidate Gary] Peters' favorables have barely budged, from 21-22 late last year to 26-27 now.
As of the end of March, AFP had spent just over $2 million attacking Peters, and they just announced another $1.5 million buy. Given that the first $2 million bought them absolutely zero advantage in Peters' favor abilities (from a minus one to minus one), do they really think that hammering the same ineffective message will bear better results?

But a better example is Ohio's 2012 Senate election. Republicans dumped $40 million against then-freshman Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown. He was one of the most liberal senators in a 50-50 swing state, giving conservatives plenty of ammunition to work with. Yet what did all that spending net them? Not much. I ran the numbers:

[B]y the time Election Day rolled around, Brown had faced a crazy $40 million spent against him: $31 million on the air, $2 million in polling, $7 million in direct mail, and staff, billboards, and other expenses.

Remember, negative attacks serve one purpose—to make the target so radioactively unpopular, that malaria could defeat him or her at the polls.

In October of 2011, PPP had Brown's job approval ratings at 40-35. In late January he was at 42-34. On Election Day, he clocked in at 48-43.

In other words, all those attack ads moved Brown from a 5-point net-positive approval rating late last year, to ... a 5-point net-positive approval rating on Election eve.

What about the head-to-head? In September 2011, the TPM polling aggregate had Brown leading 48.6 to 35.7 percent. Brown won the election 50.7 to 44.7 percent. Again, $40 million spent to damage Brown was completely wasted. His favorabilities remained unchanged. His share of supporters actually increased.

None of this is to say that money has no impact in politics. It does, particularly at lower levels of government. It's pernicious, corrosive, and must be restrained. But money isn't determinate. Billionaires may be trying, but they still don't have the ability to outright buy elections. We still have a say in the matter. The biggest say, in fact.

So don't be discouraged by big money, be pissed. It's a much more productive emotion, and has the benefit of being the truly appropriate response.

Originally posted to kos on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 01:37 PM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Lovely Image of the Shroud of Wichita (20+ / 0-)

    If you squint you can see the visage of Adam Smith.

    But it's a midterm election, they're almost certain to get more for their money this time than they did in 12 and 08.

    If only we can find a way to translate that into pissed off energized Dem constituencies we'll have something.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 01:44:42 PM PDT

    •  Perhaps. (12+ / 0-)

      A small amount of Koch/Art Pope money bought a lot of Republican legislators in NC in 2010.

      But there was nothing on our side fighting back.  I know, I was very lonely working the election in 2010.

      This year is a lot different.  All you have to do to get them working their tails off is remind them about 2010.

      And volunteer boots on the ground is worth a lot more that Koch brothers $$$.  And there seems to be enough Democratic money this time around.

      The highest form of spiritual practice is self observation with compassion.

      by NCJim on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 01:52:10 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Didn't work for Meg Whitman, the classic case (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      duhban, Onomastic, tgrshark13

      CA elects it's governors in non-presidential years.  Money spent on TV ads especially in statewide or presidential races is largely wasted.  People just tune the ads out or quit watching TV until the election is over, if they watch at all.  GOTV is best done by technology and committed volunteers, not mercenaries.  The Kochs are wasting their money, and fortunately there is a limitless class of consultants willing to help them.

      We need a bumper sticker that says "We have the numbers.  VOTE!!".  Or maybe "All we have is the numbers.  VOTE!!". That is the key to 2014, and if we survive with little damage, then we are well set up for 2016.  But that is a big if.

      Don't bet your future on 97% of climate scientists being wrong. Take action on climate now!

      by Mimikatz on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 05:04:07 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  When commercials come on (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Creosote

        That's time to do things you don't want to do when you're watching a program, You know, use the John, get something from the refrigerator, make a quick phone call, channel surf, etc.  

        Never be afraid to voice your opinion and fight for it . Corporations aren't people, they're Republicans (Rev Al Sharpton 10/7/2011) Voting is a louder voice than a bullhorn but sometimes you need that bullhorn to retain your vote.

        by Rosalie907 on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 09:28:27 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  So few people are consuming those ads. (12+ / 0-)

    TV ads are too short to really have an impact.

    People now are conditioned to treat them as poor sources of information.

    Dailykos, MSNBC, FOX News (unfortunately) are a better media to change an election because a more complete picture can be created and then the people who absorb that message are capable of having influential conversations with their family, friends, workmates and neighbors.

    I have had lots of people come up to me to talk about things they have seen on Fox News or Dailykos, but I don't remember anyone talking to me about a TV ad except maybe to laugh about how bad it was.

    The highest form of spiritual practice is self observation with compassion.

    by NCJim on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 01:46:57 PM PDT

    •  I'm sick, sick, sick of that woman from Grand... (6+ / 0-)

      Rapids (allegedly) whining about Obamacare.  The ads are running constantly on CNN.  I have the mute button at the ready when her "poor me" face appears yet again on the screen.

    •  No one under 50 watches television (10+ / 0-)

      no one watches the ads.  The indentured goobers who vote GOP are choking on the Koch fueled money flood.  

      Once there is too much of anything, the pendulum starts heading in the other direction.  That includes money.  

      The web offers a means of communicating without the television/marketing gatekeepers.  

      Live chat, blogs, videos- the campaign tools of the masses.  

      Demand that candidates have an on-line presence.  Make them go full Takai (oh, myyy) and splatter all over the web.

      Not an auto-answer 'web page.'   Sit your 'I want a cushy elected job' butt in front of a keyboard and start typing.  Or Skype.  Or no vote for you.

      See?   Big Bucks marketing campaigns become obsolete.  McCutcheon  is neutered.  If we try, by 2016, we can cut out the advertising and get to the meat.

      Think of it as a literacy test to hold office.

      Joy shared is doubled. Pain shared is halved. Spider Robinson

      by nolagrl on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:54:44 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Actually, the money spent attacking Sherrod (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Creosote, Onomastic, TKO333

      may have turned out to be a plus for Democrats this year. His opponent, Josh "The Empty Suit" Mandel saw his negatives skyrocket during this campaign, and they remain the highest of any statewide officeholder running for reelection in Ohio (he's state treasurer, at least in name, although he could give a shit about doing the job). This makes his reelection campaign harder because he basically has only two things to run on: attacks and "I was a Marine." He's running against state rep. Connie Pillich who was an Air Force captain and has a reputation for something Joshie hates with a passion: hard work. Maybe the Koch Brothers will have a job for Joshie when he loses. I hear he's really really good at brown-nosing rich people!

      Ed FitzGerald for governor Of Ohio. Women's lives depend on it. http://www.edfitzgeraldforohio.com/

      by anastasia p on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 07:45:57 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'm hoping that one day, all that money (14+ / 0-)

    boomerangs.  

    People need to look at the non-stop ads attacking and supporting and decide to support the candidate with less money to spend on ads.  Being billionaire-supported needs to become as negative on a political resume as corruption.

    There already is class warfare in America. Unfortunately, the rich are winning.

    by Puddytat on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 01:47:36 PM PDT

  •  My only objection to your reasoning is... (5+ / 0-)

    ...what would their favorables have been without the negative ad barrage?  Maybe the ads are holding them down, and without them there would have been some improvement to a more lopsided win?

    It would be interesting to compare the before-and-after averages for all candidates who had to weather these outside money negative campaigns, to those candidates who did not.

    •  Fair speculation (5+ / 0-)

      We obviously can't know what things might've been without that ad barrage.

      But ultimately, negative ads are designed to make their targets unpopular, and in 2012, they failed at that. So far in 2014, early evidence doesn't look good for Republicans either.

      Public opinion has swung more heavily because of real-world events, like the Healthcare.gov rollout flub, or the GOP's government shutdown, or Obama's blown promise that people wouldn't see their policies cancelled, than from any ad barrage.

    •  We don't need no stinkin' 'favorables.' (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      duhban, CA Nana

      We need to replace television with the web as the main campaigning platform.  Money isn't the problem - marketing politicians as products is.

      Joy shared is doubled. Pain shared is halved. Spider Robinson

      by nolagrl on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 03:05:29 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  it's good for the economy, keeping GOP flaks (7+ / 0-)

    employed rather than putting them in FEMA camps

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013 (@eState4Column5).

    by annieli on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 01:55:23 PM PDT

  •  The interesting thing about Michigan (8+ / 0-)

    is that the major papers and news outlets have pushed back on the Obamacare is evil ads. At a certain point they don't have the influence that they had during the first ad.

  •  Kochtopian Stinkburgers definitely need more ad$ (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ericlewis0, elwior, JeffW
  •  why is 2012 relevant? no comparable GOTV in Nov (0+ / 0-)

    I do not see why any particular experience in 2012 would be relevant to the November 2014 election.  In November 2014 in not one state will the Dems have a comparable GOTV operation as we had in the targeted swing states in 2012.

  •  They've got couches all over America (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    elwior, JeffW, The Marti, nolagrl, duhban

    With more spare change like that $3.5 million just laying untouched between the cushions. At least they're creating jobs with it, I guess...

    Gonna find my baby, gonna hold her tight, gonna grab some afternoon delight. My motto's always been; when it's right, it's right. Why wait until the middle of a cold dark night? - Louisiana Congressman Vance McAllister (R)

    by Fordmandalay on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:05:36 PM PDT

    •  I was looking at the top of the 2013 and 2014 (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Fordmandalay, Creosote

      Forbes list
      Each brother increased by 4 billion dollars
      If you were making $40k a year and spent $ 300 in that state, you'd be spending a comparable amount
      Now think about disposable income levels
      Their 3.9 billion vrs your what 2k?

      The really scary thing is they have demonstrated a disgusting aptitude for the long game, so, are we sure we understand their true goals?

  •  Thank you Kos. Now we can go back to (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SteelerGrrl, emobile, The Marti, duhban

    focusing on GOTV instead of whining about the Kochs buying elections. In 2016, when HRC spends north of $1 billion and groups advocating for her matches that, will we complain? We'll see.

    New Republic: So are the left-wing blogs as bad as the Tea Party ones in this case? -------------------------Chuck Schumer: Left-wing blogs are the mirror image. They just have less credibility and less clout.

    by AlexDrew on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:08:37 PM PDT

  •  Hope they change millions to billions. LOL n/t (0+ / 0-)

    "Really nice, but also very serious about his job." Jackie Evancho on President Obama 6/7/12

    by BarackStarObama on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:09:37 PM PDT

  •  Wish they would piss away billions (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, The Marti, fumie, nolagrl

    I would love to see them spend billions and it not work to buy our government and have them end up homeless.

  •  They not only lose, but we (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, The Marti, nolagrl

    rob them of their precious Gollum millions too.

    Know that $20 I owe you? Well, since money equals speech, then speech, of course, must equal money. C'mere and I'll read you the Tao Te Ching.

    by thenekkidtruth on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:18:56 PM PDT

  •  The more they spend, the more people tune out (7+ / 0-)

    It actually has real backfire potential if the Dems leverage correctly, and it seems they might be doing just that (see Harry Reid).

    Imagine the most profound idea ever conceptualized occupying this space. Now expect exactly the opposite. You'll never be disappointed.

    by Gurnt on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:20:23 PM PDT

  •  So, Kochs fired their 2012 consultants, (7+ / 0-)

    due to abysmal electoral results ("please proceed, Governor"; Dems unexpectedly hold Senate.)

    Now they have hired a whole new 2014 crop, and have placed all their eggs in the "repeal Obamacare" basket.

    OK, I'm sure these Koch guys, with their MIT degrees, are pretty damned smart.

    But their ability to use their ideology, fueled by lotso bucks and channeled through a secretive network to control the narrative, is far from clear.

    Got to say, sometimes they seem pretty amateurish.
    (No offense to amateurs intended.)

    I can't help it. I love the state of Texas. It's a harmless perversion. - Molly Ivins

    by rsmpdx on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:27:32 PM PDT

    •  If you have a degree in some engineering... (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Marti, fumie, nolagrl, SteelerGrrl

      ...or science discipline, but were brought up in a silver-spoon environment, and you really don't use it much, your intellect will suffer. Same might be said for law students, looking at the Koch Bros. and Romney. They're smart, but not wise.

      Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

      by JeffW on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:39:26 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  the old adage (6+ / 0-)

    that we don't need as much money, we just need enough to get our message out. but the kochs seem to enjoy providing welfare for advertising and media firms.

    The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

    by Laurence Lewis on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:29:07 PM PDT

  •  Millions on media (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SteelerGrrl, JeffW

    that is pretty well dead to the post Baby Boomer demographic.  Another couple million on polling which is spun or ignored to keep the echo chamber intact.

    Flush

    •  Good point and social media is FREE (0+ / 0-)

      The civil rights, gay rights and women's movements, designed to allow others to reach for power previously grasped only by white men, have made a real difference, and the outlines of 21st century America have emerged. -- Paul West of LA Times

      by LiberalLady on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 04:34:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Well, maybe they could try something... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The Marti, SteelerGrrl

    ...different to spread all that money around!

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:42:52 PM PDT

  •  The airwaves are saturated (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The Marti, Iberian, fumie, JeffW, Creosote

    with these ads here in NC. It's literally nothing but attack ads and pharmaceuticals. I work in a hospital where there are TVs everywhere and they run all day long ... it's mind numbing.

    No one seems to pay any attention to them, except to say how annoying they are or laugh at them. However, the kissing congressman video was a big hit in the lunchroom today :)

    Visit my new blog, Little Lotte Studio, to see what I'm growing and making this spring!

    by SteelerGrrl on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:43:36 PM PDT

  •  No Time To Vote (2+ / 1-)
    Recommended by:
    AlexDrew, Anne Elk
    Hidden by:
    Bethesda 1971

    It is a non Presidential election year and Democrats love staying at home ... will be paying for the 2010 apathy for a long time.  And Obama has been a huge disappointment -- clearly, he was not ready for the job.

    President Obama needs to be more liberal.

    by jimgilliamv2 on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:43:56 PM PDT

    •  Why the HR? (0+ / 0-)

      It's matter of opinion. Grow up!!!

      New Republic: So are the left-wing blogs as bad as the Tea Party ones in this case? -------------------------Chuck Schumer: Left-wing blogs are the mirror image. They just have less credibility and less clout.

      by AlexDrew on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 03:01:30 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  People at this site keep saying this, (0+ / 0-)

    yet they remain in control of things as firmly as ever, if not more so.

    •  We have the Senate and the White House. (0+ / 0-)

      We have a lock on the electoral map and have good shot of holding on to the big house in 2016.

      New Republic: So are the left-wing blogs as bad as the Tea Party ones in this case? -------------------------Chuck Schumer: Left-wing blogs are the mirror image. They just have less credibility and less clout.

      by AlexDrew on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 03:03:18 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The big money is spent on TV, however... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The Marti, Creosote

    AFP is also buying adds on the internet at an alarming rate.  I live in CO and the anti-Obamacare, anti-Udall adds are crazy.  They even creep into my sons Lego and Skylander channels on Youtube.  One of the adds is a 30 second spot that you can't fast forward!  Yes, pissed is the correct emotion!

  •  They'd rather pay millions to ad agencies to... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    The Marti, JeffW

    ...try to prevent people in need from getting health care--or food, to keep from paying millions to help needy people eat or stay healthy.  Sick buggers, and evil too.

  •  The very real downside of this is: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Creosote

    Anyone who benefits from this spending(big media), on this scale, will fight tooth and nail against real election reform. Corporations are not people , my friend, they are a legal fiction intended to limit personal liability.

    "Remember, Republican economic policies quadrupled the debt before I took office and doubled it after I left. We simply can't afford to double-down on trickle-down." Bill Clinton

    by irate on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:51:21 PM PDT

  •  That maybe so (0+ / 0-)

    for state wide races that get the attention of the media. In state elections for judges, senates and congress, and many other public offices they have a really good record.

    We'll see in this cycle we are not going to be in a presidential election and people who watch more tv and listen to radio will be overrepresented.

  •  Money still counts (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW

    if you use it wisely. But these idiots have swallowed all their own nonsense on Obamacare, so in the end they will indeed piss away millions of dollars spouting obvious bullshit.

    "Milton Friedman's misfortune is that his policies have been tried."

    by el fuego on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:56:50 PM PDT

  •  Piss away money? Don't be absurd . . . . (0+ / 0-)

    we taxpayers will recompense the Koch assholes for the $$ they use to pervert our government.

    Fiat justitia ruat caelum "Let justice be done though the heavens fall."

    by bobdevo on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 02:56:51 PM PDT

  •  Great Post. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LakeSuperior, duhban

    This is vintage Kos. Excellent stuff. This picked me up a bit, Thanks!

    "Microscopes are prudent in an emergency." -- Emily Dickinson

    by godotnut on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 03:03:53 PM PDT

  •  I wonder if they affecting Scott's race (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW

    as I saw he was ahead of Crist.  
    I wonder how good those Kochs check out things... We should advocate for several million and promise teabaggery and then spend it on our guys.

    We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

    by Vetwife on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 03:08:58 PM PDT

  •  Well said... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LakeSuperior, JeffW, duhban, Creosote

    And let's be honest: the TV advertisements on which AFP and the other right-wing cash incinerators spend most of their money are utter shit.  It's amazing how these groups just keep recycling the same tired middle-class-white-family-frets-over-the-tax-bill (and candidate so and so wants to raise them!), the-deficit-is-going-to-eat-your-children (and candidate X is a big spender!) ads year after year after year.  I guess we can add Obamacare-vaguely-makes-me-mad! to the mix now.  But have you ever seen an AFP/Club for Growth/whatever ad that you thought was any good?  I see these in Illinois all the time, and they are televised spam.  Are persuadable voters really going to be influenced by effectively the same run ad year after year?  

    The main effect so far of Citizens United has been to separate hard right billionaires from their money.

  •  DELETE MY FRACKIN' KOCH MILLIONS, KOS!!! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW

    May the Kochs piss away every last cent they have, and then some.

  •  I like it when Markos pays attention to Michigan. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    duhban, Creosote

    Michigan Democrats need all of the help we can get because this will be such a critical election for both the trajectory of our state and of the Michigan Democratic Party (and particularly Michigan progressives).

  •  I'm going to have to call this post out as (0+ / 0-)

    BS Kos. You're absolutely right, money is definitely not determinative, if you are defining that as 100% success for the higher congressional spender.

    But in 2010 the candidate that spent the most money won
    85% of the time in the House
    and 83% in the senate

    in 2008:
    93% house
    86% sennate

    2006
    94% house
    73% senate

    2004
    98% house
    88% senate

    For a grand average of 87.5% of the time between 2004 and 2010.

    But sure 9 out of 10 means nothing when you can site two anecdotal examples.

    There is no way to justify the bribery and corruption that is our elections process.

    "The Earth is my country and Science my religion" Christiaan Huygens. The gold standard ended on August 15, 1971, its time we start acting like it. If we can afford full employment killing Germans, we can afford full employment during peace-time.

    by Auburn Parks on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 03:39:20 PM PDT

    •  link (0+ / 0-)

      "The Earth is my country and Science my religion" Christiaan Huygens. The gold standard ended on August 15, 1971, its time we start acting like it. If we can afford full employment killing Germans, we can afford full employment during peace-time.

      by Auburn Parks on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 03:39:53 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Those numbers are misleading (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      duhban

      How many House races are really competitive?

      Most donors will back candidates if they think there is a chance of winning.  If a district usually votes 60% to the Republican candidate, no one is going to waste money trying to elect a Democrat there.

      You have to look at competitive races in swing districts to see how much money really affects elections.

      •  No you're right all is well and good having (0+ / 0-)

        bribery be our political process.

        "The Earth is my country and Science my religion" Christiaan Huygens. The gold standard ended on August 15, 1971, its time we start acting like it. If we can afford full employment killing Germans, we can afford full employment during peace-time.

        by Auburn Parks on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 05:38:18 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Well, that possibly reflects the fact (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      duhban

      that incumbents get pretty good at raising dough and there is a huge inertia in the electorate. Incumbents are favored because, absent any rationale to the contrary, if you voted the incumbent last time, you're likely to assume that your judgment is still pretty keen and rather than tell yourself you were wrong last time, you vote for the incumbent again. So showing that correlation doesn't necessarily prove anything. A more telling test, IMO, would be open elections without an incumbent running. If your thesis were correct, the candidate with more money would win 85% of the time. So what's the data say?

      Voting is the means by which the public is distracted from the realities of power and its exercise.

      by Anne Elk on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 05:32:39 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Are you trying to make an argument that having (0+ / 0-)

        politicans beg rich people for donations is OK?

        Because it sounds like to me you are rationalizing what I pointed out.

        Is money determinative?

        Is bribery a good elections policy for society?

        I don't really care about the numbers for or against the first because the second is far more important.

        "The Earth is my country and Science my religion" Christiaan Huygens. The gold standard ended on August 15, 1971, its time we start acting like it. If we can afford full employment killing Germans, we can afford full employment during peace-time.

        by Auburn Parks on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 05:41:18 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I have no argument with your sentiments (0+ / 0-)

          but with your assertion of causality based on your quotation of some numbers about re-election. Correlation is not cause. There's no point in blustering about it.

          Voting is the means by which the public is distracted from the realities of power and its exercise.

          by Anne Elk on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 10:20:08 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Its simply a data point. It is true that since2004 (0+ / 0-)

            87.5% of all candidates who spent more money have won. So what are you blustering on about?

            You seem to think that data point is either irrelevant or misleading.

            "The Earth is my country and Science my religion" Christiaan Huygens. The gold standard ended on August 15, 1971, its time we start acting like it. If we can afford full employment killing Germans, we can afford full employment during peace-time.

            by Auburn Parks on Wed Apr 09, 2014 at 05:30:17 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  In California, we get saturated with TV ads (0+ / 0-)

    because of the size of the state, it's usually the only way to get the message out there.

    Regardless of which side of the fence you're on, trust me, this bombardment of TV ads quickly becomes background noise - nobody pays attention.  Read a magazine, mute the TV, go to the kitchen, change channels, whatever, it just gets so old so quick that I can't imagine it doing anything at all.

    Once in a while, a "Devil Sheep" ad comes on and gets you rolling on the floor.

    The most violent element in society is ignorance.

    by Mr MadAsHell on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 03:48:28 PM PDT

  •  Wishful thinking? (0+ / 0-)

    Still waiting for the Republican implosion people have been talking about for years.

    "In Congressional races, 95 percent of the time the person with more money wins. It doesn't matter if they are a Republican or Democrat, conservative or liberal. It doesn't matter what their ideas are or what their ideology is. It doesn't matter what they think at all. You have more money and you will win 19 out of 20 times."
    Pretending otherwise is dangerous.

    I suggest giving Wolf PAC serious consideration, because I know for certain we are not going to vote our way out of the government auction system.

    Trust, but verify. - Reagan
    Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

    When the rich have tripled their share of the income and wealth yet again, Republicans will still blame the poor and 3rd Way Democrats will still negotiate.

    by Words In Action on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 04:13:10 PM PDT

    •  have you not been following (0+ / 0-)

      the ongoing antics of Bush vs others vs Christie?

      Der Weg ist das Ziel

      by duhban on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 05:56:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Of course. (0+ / 0-)

        But the Party hasn't imploded. We still have our backs against the wall.

        Gooserock says he's been hearing about the impending collapse of the Republican Party since the 60s.

        Trust, but verify. - Reagan
        Vote, but Occupy. - commonmass

        When the rich have tripled their share of the income and wealth yet again, Republicans will still blame the poor and 3rd Way Democrats will still negotiate.

        by Words In Action on Wed Apr 09, 2014 at 01:10:37 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Thanks for diary (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    duhban

    I was getting seriously depressed with McCutcheon and all of the opinion pieces that broke down what it means. But, as you say, it's true that money doesn't always win.  It didn't work for Romney.  And some ads that are paid for by big donors are horrible -- so extreme they don't work or turn independent voters off.  

    Conservatives may celebrate McCutcheon but time will tell if it helps them, or if they continue to funnel their money to the wrong candidates and the wrong message.  

    The civil rights, gay rights and women's movements, designed to allow others to reach for power previously grasped only by white men, have made a real difference, and the outlines of 21st century America have emerged. -- Paul West of LA Times

    by LiberalLady on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 04:16:58 PM PDT

  •  Hey Kochs!!! (0+ / 0-)

    I have a surefire way for the R's to win ALL the elections.

    To find out how

    Send $10M to Da Rock...........

    It's worth a try......

    Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. Frank Zappa

    by Da Rock on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 04:38:25 PM PDT

  •  We are at a pivotal moment (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    duhban

    Thanks to TiVO, NetFlix and online viewing, more and more of the electorate choose what they want to see, when they want to see it and so they don't see political ads.

    On the other hand, the most consistently, reliable voters in midterms--seniors--still watch the tube.

    We are at a Johnny Carson vs. Jimmy Fallon shift in the way people watch television--appointment television vs. viral videos at one's leisure. Major media vs. social media.

    It will be interesting to see how Big Money adapts to an electorate that is increasingly unhooked to TV and therefore unaware of their ads.

    "I am not interested in picking up crumbs of compassion thrown from the table of someone who considers himself my master. I want the full menu of rights." (From "You Said a Mouthful" by Bishop Desmond Tutu - South African bishop & activist, b.1931)

    by FiredUpInCA on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 05:18:22 PM PDT

    •  agreed (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FiredUpInCA

      I'm honestly surprised Nelson has managed to fool people this long into thinking their ratings still mean much of anything. I 'time shift' (dvr) everything I watch. Yes it means that often I'm a day or more behind but the pay off is I can not honestly remember the last time I watched a commercial outside of the Super Bowl (which I watch more because of the ads) and the stray one I catch every now and than.

      My vote is big money doesn't adapt very fast given that people still like to pretend 'Sweeps' means something or that the Nelson ratings means what it used to mean.

      Der Weg ist das Ziel

      by duhban on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 06:00:22 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Then why are we worrying about campaign (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    StevenWells

    finance again? Isn't the reality more that, if you nominate a shitty candidate and run a bad campaign, you are likely to lose the election, no matter how much money you have? Moreover, once a certain amount has been spent on a campaign, more money doesn't generate more positive results, because telling a voter the same thing 20 times is no more effective than telling them 10 times.

    I am reminded of the Meg Whitman campaign a few years ago. The more voters saw of her, the less they liked her. So the bottom line is for Democrats to nominate strong, compelling candidates and go straight at the opposition, Koch money be damned.

    Voting is the means by which the public is distracted from the realities of power and its exercise.

    by Anne Elk on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 05:21:13 PM PDT

  •  Clearly, (0+ / 0-)

    They see the millions as a small investment in future political policy that nets them billions.

    "In a country well governed, poverty is something to be ashamed of. In a country badly governed, wealth is something to be ashamed of.” -Confucius

    by pierre9045 on Tue Apr 08, 2014 at 06:46:03 PM PDT

  •  T&R'd, bookmarked for community edu! (0+ / 0-)

    Something good and bracing to show to others who are depressed by all the money matters in politics...

    Poverty is not an accident. Like slavery and apartheid, it is man-made and can be removed by the actions of human beings. —Nelson Mandela

    by kaliope on Wed Apr 09, 2014 at 01:13:45 AM PDT

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