Koch brothers raise 2016 election warchest that's bigger than either party's spend


#1

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#2

I still don’t understand what campaign funds actually do. It’s a public process and a government function which is going to happen anyway. What does spending nearly a billion $ on television ads even do? It seems useless! Do they bet on people doing what their televisions tell them to do? It boggles the mind.


#3

There are people that call 911 when a fast food joint is out of what they want. Some of them vote, chances are they vote for which politician had the ad with the most explosions in them.


#4

A billion dollars can pay to broadcast a lot of bullshit, slander, and FUD. It can also pay for a lot of private investigators to dig up marginal misdeeds on the opposition. It can also pay for people to go around firebombing the opposition if they feel like it. It’s not like the expenditures have any transparancy anyway.

PS, please don’t say money is bullshit. Money motivates people whether or not it has intrinsic value and wouldn’t exist in your anarcho-syndicalist utopia of non-coercion. I’m talking about the real world with people who do things for reasons other than increasing universal happiness.


#5

Ah, so we are dealing with people motivated by reason… I’ll need to look out for that, I thought for a moment that you were about to frame a “real world” which was based upon mass delusion, but was “real” because it was popular.


#6

Fine, I’ll posit to you that whether or not your definition of money actually exists or is provable, objectively extant human beings will do damn near anything to get it. And I can probably prove it too, if you give me all objects within your “realm of control” (since you seem to hate the idea or word “ownership”) that has such monetary value so I can sell it off as part of my study.


#7

Buying the victory. As simple as this.

Yes, but not your way.

Partially it is. Only partially, though. There are other, less visible and more efficient, ways. For that kind of money you can buy a lot of microtargeting. With enough tracking and profiling (Facebook, I am looking at YOU!), you can have political preferences of the population indexed down to the level of individuals. Part of the marketers’ effort is finding what the individuals are sensitive to, whether in listening to or being alienated by; the same product (soft drink, politician…) can then be sold in multiple ways - subtle, in-your-face, fun, serious, guilt-trippy or pride-inducing… - with the style tuned to the individual’s personality. That can get you a LOT of “conversion”.

Then there is the discrimination of targets into already yours (you can ignore these, they will vote for you even with no effort), staunchly anti-you (they won’t vote for you whatever you do, all you can do is alienating them entirely so they won’t vote at all), and undecided; after this presorting, you can invest all the money in this third group. That’s a formidable per-capita budget.

Remember the World War One. Much less sophisticated techniques were used to turn the entire nation from anti-war to pro-war sentiment in just couple months. And that was the early age of PR.

It’s not just the TV. But yes, they do. And it works.

It does.


#8

Let’s focus on word meaning and reporting for a moment, shall we?

Cory says, “The Kochs have raised $889M from conservative millionaires…”

The whole article is about how they intend to raise this money. It has not happened yet. Nor is it “larger than either party’s spend”: “it would put it on track to spend nearly as much as the campaigns of each party’s presidential nominee.”

If you’re going to summarize an article - don’t change the facts.


#9

To be honest, I don’t think that @popobawa4u is an anarcho-syndicalist. They are way too much of an individualist when contrasted with the anarcho-syndicalist ideal of voluntary collectives run by worker’s councils.


#10

I get that. But anarcho-sydacalism seems to be the closest named political philosophy that I could remember a name for. @popobawa4u is at least anacho-something-or-other as far as I can tell.


#11

I am definitely interested in anarcho-syndicalism, although perhaps not orthodox. My thinking is kind of synthesis of it with Agorism, in a techno-tribal sort of way. Although I prefer to think of it a Eutopia. Ultimately based upon creating culture directly through arts and sciences rather than commerce.

In any case, all rather foreign to the Kock-up brothers and probably any candidates anywhere!


#12

Welcome to Boing Boing.

Remember all those people who say both parties are exactly alike and voting doesn’t matter? The Koch brothers didn’t need to spend a dime to neuter them. If they can convince minorities to stay home, that’s all they need. If they can rile up their base, that might be enough too. They don’t need to convince the 90% who are already convinced.


#13

You know, talking to you stresses me out, and frankly I find it exhausting. Please take it as a compliment because I mean it as such. Because you always insist on bringing up points that make me question my assumptions and rile my pragmatism.

I usually agree in principle, but so often I fail to see a point in the discussion because I have no idea how your ideas could possibly be implemented in practice so I get annoyed on two fronts. Mainly it’s because you’re making me think uncomfortably much.


Think of it this way, talking with you feels like fighting a specter with a sword I’ve only just noticed is rusty and cracked. Which is how it felt to speak with my philosophy teacher in college.


#14

If this doesn’t show that Citizen’s United has to be overturned and chucked out in the street, then nothing else does.


#15

The Kochs will raise $889M from conservative millionaires and billionaires to spend in the 2016 election

Meanwhile, I’m sure the opposition is raising money from the lemonade stands of small children, wholesome bake sales, and the couches of little old ladies.


#16

Why do people think this system is “representative” or “correctable” at all anymore? People actually suggest “campaign finance reform” with seriousness after watching the previous “reforms?” It’s done. Put a fork in it. We have new technology; it’s time to try something with that rather than spinning our wheels on this old, broken bullshit of “democracy.”


#17

With money and influence the KockBros will buy an image of nice old farts that wouldn’t harm a fly…

These two sociopaths have done more damage to the USA then can be imagined, and that’s what we know of, the hidden debacles would scare the shit out’a you.


Huffing Boing Boing
#18

Koch is not only making their chosen candidates’ campaigns more likely to succeed, they are buying the candidates.


#19

Soooo let me get this straight. The Koch brothers have stated that they will, essentially, spare no expense in buying the upcoming election. Uh, shouldn’t that be illegal? It would be in any truly developed country. Apparently, we need to just “close our eyes and think of America” as our Democracy gets well and truly fucked, and turned into a 100% plutocratic corporatocracy.


#20

The law in its infinite majesty allows the poor as well as evil billionaire plutocrats to buy elections.

You should have worked harder to inherit billions if you wanted a say. You get no sympathy from me.

Personally, I reckon the amount of spending / donations allowed per person should in some way be related to minimum wage.