The Fat Cats Love Politicians

Money corrupts politics? Who gets what from whom?
Top all time donors
Top individual fat cat donors
Biggest contributions
Top PACs
Diverting money from one candidate to another (Sort of what Delay is accused of doing?)
Small versus big donors
Lawyers

Surprised by who the fat cats love best?

Posted by Jack at February 18, 2006 1:23 AM
Comments
Comment #126797

No suprises here. Of course the Democrats will claim that those charts are inaccurate at best and phony a worst. They aint going to admitt that ‘The party of the people’ is really the party of the fat cats and special intrest.
Fact is neither party represents the people. And haven’t forever.

Posted by: Ron Brown at February 18, 2006 2:17 AM
Comment #126863

Yes, it seems the Dems forgot about their ENORMOUS union and trial lawyer endorsemements …

I’m sure the money they took from them was all on the up and up and it still allowed the democratic congressmen to only vote the integrity of their conscience.

And pigs fly at Mach 3 using stealth technology …

Posted by: Ken Cooper at February 18, 2006 5:44 AM
Comment #126868

Quite right, Jack. The incumbents of both parties sustain and maintain this corruption for their own benefit at election time. That is precisely why the only way to end corruption is putting these incumbents on notice, the anti-incumbency movement is taking off and they have a choice, clean it up or get swept out with the rest of the corruption of our political process and government. Vote Out Incumbents for Democracy.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 18, 2006 6:13 AM
Comment #126870

David:

You’ve spoken out on behalf of VOID for a while now—-is there any indication how the message is progressing?

Would it be acceptable to view campaign term limits as a means of accomplishing what VOID wants? If the goal of VOID is to put incumbents on notice, and remove a lot of them as part of the message, it seems like term limits would do that.

To all:

It’s going to be interesting and fun reading all the comments that are sure to come about how these numbers are faked, how opensecrets.org is a Republican oriented site, and how its all a right wing conspiracy. Bring em on—- I need some humor.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at February 18, 2006 6:20 AM
Comment #126880

Jack

This post belongs in the blog Hall of Fame.

As a matter of fact,I think I just started one and you are the first inductee.

This post should be sent to our friends at Fox.

Wasn’s it former justice Brandeis who said “Sunlight is the best disenfectent?”?

I think I will archive this post for future”reference”

Any comments,Paul Seigal,AP,Andre,AldousStephen Daughtery,Burt,Adreinne?

Posted by: sicilianeagle at February 18, 2006 6:54 AM
Comment #126885

WHY ISN’T ANYONE ADDRESSING THE REAL ISSUE HERE!!!!

Just like a republican to try and redirect from the real issue.

Posted by: black&pissed at February 18, 2006 7:09 AM
Comment #126886
Surprised by who the fat cats love best?

Nope. Don’t really care who’s getting who’s either. Let’s call a spade a spade: it’s pretty evident that most everyone is raking in scads of cash from special interests, and who’s getting more or less at the moment is rather immaterial. David is right. One way or another, this system of campaign bribery has gotta go.

Posted by: Amani at February 18, 2006 7:14 AM
Comment #126909

b&p-

What is the “real issue”? It looks to me like the real issue is an unveiling of the hypocrisy of the Democratic Party in saying that the Republican Party is the “party of corruption”. From what I saw on the referenced sites, there is room at the table for both sides, unless of course the Dems are pure as the driven snow in connection with their fund raising.

Posted by: John Back at February 18, 2006 8:35 AM
Comment #126923

As a union member it makes me sick to see where my money is really going. While they are cutting our benifits. Sure would be nice to see them put that money in our health care fund. Well it least i get my monthly news letter bashing Bush.Money well spent???

Posted by: nathan h at February 18, 2006 9:07 AM
Comment #126950

If Abramoff’s lawyer works this right he will turn out to be a ‘hero’.
He will be the man who brought down the corrupted in our government.

Am I reading those numbers correctly? The Republicans - though they have this huge scandal - are the party of ‘the people’?

Nathan,

All and all, how do you really feel about your union?
I have talked to more and more people lately who think that their own unions are doing them more harm than good in the longrun.

Posted by: dawn at February 18, 2006 10:36 AM
Comment #126971

Yeah Nathan, you should quit your union since you are so disgusted with it, and opt out of social security too. Those are totally commie programs. Go work at Walmart where unions are discouraged.

It’s obvious that corporations and rich fat cats give all their money to Republicans to save their butts. That’s where money is being given disproportionately.

Posted by: Max at February 18, 2006 11:22 AM
Comment #126974

One of us is dyslexic.

Posted by: dawn at February 18, 2006 11:30 AM
Comment #127008

Max

I was having a similar problem on the other side where that data show that pollution has been reduced, but the partisans insist on arguing their spin.

I think we have a serious problem in this country with lack of ability to understand information. That is probably why liberals do as well as they do.

Posted by: Jack at February 18, 2006 12:41 PM
Comment #127009

While the charts show the Democrats getting the lions share of money, I noticed that the Republicans are getting their share. Neither side is innocent.
Campaign finance reform is long overdue. And I’m going to be asking any canidate that wants my vote what they intend to do about it. I’m also going to insist that they show me where their money is comming from. The less from Fat Cats and PACs the better.
Then if I vote for them, they had better be making a serious effort to reform campaign financing. If they don’t the next time around they lose my vote.

Posted by: Ron Brown at February 18, 2006 12:43 PM
Comment #127017

I just glanced at the charts and figures on all
of those links, and yet it was apparent to me
that the average American has spoken. They give
more money to the GOP because they represent
middle Americas mainstream values. Not the
“values” of the looney leftist liberals who are
dragging this country into the gutter. There
should be no surprise that unions, lawyers and
Emily’s List support Dems. But some corporations,
who you’d think would be GOP supporters, obviously
don’t care if they’re regulated out of business
by the Dems. I guess the fat cats now believe
the party with no ideas will make them fatter.

Posted by: Dale G. at February 18, 2006 12:55 PM
Comment #127018

max,nathan,said as a MEMBER of a union! he has a right to free speach,as a MEMBER of a union myself, it is quite upsetting, to see them give the democrats, 12 million dollars a year,when 55% of the MEMBERS are republicans.and max the MEMBERS of the union,put there trust in a few people in the union to run it properly,and fairly, max our daddys were not rich like yours,so we cant just quit! after 26 years of service as a MEMBER of a union,i find your sarcastic,respone quite sick,and i would hope you would act like a adult, someday! instead of a rich baby! with a silver spoon in your mouth! r brown

Posted by: r brown at February 18, 2006 12:56 PM
Comment #127040

r brown,

Free speech cuts both ways. Saying that if someone doesn’t like unions or social security they should opt to dump it is hardly controversial. Also, sorry no rich daddy, so I don’t fit into your stereotype that way. Just educated.

Posted by: Max at February 18, 2006 2:13 PM
Comment #127052

Well, at least Big-Beer is in the GOP Camp. I think I will help support the party today.

Posted by: Scott at February 18, 2006 2:46 PM
Comment #127059

Yeah, I know this data well.

Another person misinterpreted the whole thing as well: Mona Charen. She claimed in her column that somehow Democrats got most of their money from millionaires, while Republicans mostly got it from people contributing less than $200. Also the percentages she were using were a bowlderized, misleading version of what was actually true: the percentages represented share of a particular bracket, not the fraction of the party’s receipts coming in by these means. It’s a populist fantasy, since most of both party’s receipts come in from the $200+ donors.

In fact, if you look at donations coming in at over two hundred dollars, you will find there is around 38 million dollars more going to the Republicans than the Democrats. At the $1000 plus level, the Republicans enjoy a slight lead.

You ask, why does this matter? Because as much as the Republicans would like to pretend that thousand dollar checks typically come from the downtrodden masses, they’re really coming from the people lobbying them, and benefiting from their elitist policies.

Earlier, some of you tried to tar Harry Reid with the brush of Abramoff’s money. Unfortunately, there again the GOP talking points do a disservice to their constituents.

First, many people likely did business with Abramoff, or came into contact with him, who were not corrupt. Second, Abramoff never gave money to Reid, or any other Democrat. He gave money exclusively to Republicans. As for his associates, it’s legitimate to ask, but one must review the circumstances with care. Why?

Because the clincher here is that the position that Greenburg Taurig was expecting Reid to take wasn’t the one he actually took. The issue here is whether there is a quid pro quo at work, a “this for that” arrangement. It should not be illegal to lobby congress, to petition our government officials as assembled groups.

It should be, and in fact is illegal, though, to receive something as a governing official for doing something. That is the problem of lobbying today: quid pro quo arrangements between the politicians and business groups that cuts public interest out of the equation. To the extent that Republicans or Democrat officials are like that we should give them a choice: shape up or ship out. It may be incovenient for a conservative politician to be caught like this, but its embarrassing for us liberals, given what our party’s supposed to stand for.

As for your assertion, Jack, that DeLay’s crime was the diversion of money, that is patently false. What DeLay did was purposefully put the money through a process designed to coverup the true origins of the money. That deception as to the source of the funds is the crime, not the transfers. Drug Lords launder money through investments and bonds and other financial instruments. These instruments aren’t illegal, but using them to circumvent financial laws, and hide the nature of ill-gotten gains is.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 18, 2006 3:07 PM
Comment #127071

Stephen

Did I mention Abramoff or Reid taking money directly from him? He did well by the Abramoff’s clients, BTW, but that wasn’t what I said.

This is a lot like you guys trying to say 4.7% unemployment is a bad number. Or like the tortuous analysis currently being done on the thread on the other side where your side is trying to prove that a 29% reduction in sulfur dioxide pollution is an increase. Bury the facts in verbiage.

I will give you the simple reason why these figures are what they are. It isn’t really that Dems are bad; they are just bimodal. When you think Democrat two images come to mind: the rich liberal and the poor recipient of public assistance. If you account for public employee union members there is much truth to this.

Dems draw disproportionately from the poor and the rich. The Republicans are better off in the middle. Since laws limit the amount an individual can give, a middle class guy can donate as much as Teddy Kennedy or Ted Tuner. This works to the advantage of Republicans because we have a bigger base of medium size donors.

Dems depend on rich guys and organized groups and it shows.

Posted by: Jack at February 18, 2006 3:30 PM
Comment #127120

I’m not for voting out ALL incumbents. Only the ones that have been in for more than 3 terms. I think that if there is enough of a clamor for REAL change in government it should be for term-limits for congressional representatives. How about 6 terms for House members and 2 for Senators. That would mean that they’re only around 2 more years than a President could POSSIBLY be in office (10). At least then, if a President serves his “normal” two terms (8 years), they would still have 4 years to turn it around (assuming they’re re-elected). The big way to improve our system is to make SURE that incumbents had to run against someone in the primaries. This might be a rather moot point in MANY occasions, but at least it would get people thinking. I don’t know that you could change elections laws to require it or anything…but it would help. My thoughts. I’m sure David will only like PART of it.

Posted by: Robert at February 18, 2006 4:54 PM
Comment #127121

So, let me get this straight: if the Sierra Club and the Nature Conservancy and others contribute to a PAC urging action on Global Warming, they are no different from Exxon when it contributes to a PAC opposed to action; that morally and politically they are the same? They are both ‘fat cats’?

When environmental groups address climate change by donating primarily to Democrats, they are indistinguishable from Exxon when it donates to Republicans who block action on climate change?

And anti-incumbency proponents believe it is more important to ‘throw the bums out’ than to support the Democrat’s & environmentalist efforts to address climate change, or oppose Republican & Exxon efforts to prevent actions?

Posted by: phx8 at February 18, 2006 4:54 PM
Comment #127122

Probably the biggest problem however is the fact that after a congressman is voted out, they are required by law to be a lobbyist for a year! How could that possibly help with the government b/c just what we don’t need is the likes of Ted Kennedy or a John Ashcroft-type being lobbyists!!

Posted by: Robert at February 18, 2006 4:56 PM
Comment #127127

Jack-
I know the numbers. Yes, most of the donors giving over a million dollars are Democrats. But only twenty-three donors qualify, and collectively, they provided only about $48 Million dollars out of the $402 million the Democrats raised. Significant, but not anywhere near a controlling amount.

I think our readers should know the source I speak from. I would direct our readers then to look at the columns where the bulk of the money is coming in.

In both those columns, the $1000+ and the $10,000+ donation brackets, we do not see any strong favorite on either side. Not only that, but in the bracket with the most people involved, the $1000+ bracket, the Republicans actually have a slight advantage.

All this is old news though. We’re working off of donations to the 2002 campaign.

Let’s look at the totals of money raised for the 2004 campaing, then, in this other document.

If we can suppose that taking more PAC money is catering to special interests, then the Republican party wins the blue ribbon. For the house it was $130 to 103 million in their favor. In the Senate it was $37 million to about 31. For the president himself, it was $2.9 million to Kerry’s $784 thousand. That’s right, thousands.

Looking at the President’s Demographics for the last election, we see a difference in the level of fundraising at different levels of income. Where Kerry beats Bush contributor wise at the $200+ level, Bush has more than twice the contributors at the $1000+ level. More significantly, Bush relies on people at that level for nearly half the hard money donations he will get, while Kerry only gets about a third of his donations there.

Remember what I said about populist fantasies, though? The reality is, contributor are by and large economically well-off. Look at the data at the top of that page about just how many people actually contribute. That portion is dwarfed by teh people who never contribute anything. Political contributions are a luxury, often times.

I think your conclusions are unfounded, and the preceding evidence I’ve given you is my basis for that opinion.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 18, 2006 5:06 PM
Comment #127166

$696,520,320

That is the total spent for all candidates, both Democrats and Republicans, for the 2004 election.

To put it into perspective, here is the amount ‘lost’ by the CPA.

$8,800,000,000

The Republican Party refuses to investigate.

Here is how much we spend on Iraq in an average week:

$1,400,000,000

That’s right. We spend twice as much in one week in Iraq as we spend for an entire US election campaign.

Finally, here is how much Exxon made in profit last year, with the amount of the 2004 election underneath:

$36,000,000,000
$696,520,320

Makes Global Warming seem almost worth it, doesn’t it? Kind of brings a tear to the eye. Thanks, Exxon.
Thanks, Republicans.

Posted by: phx8 at February 18, 2006 6:48 PM
Comment #127181

Stephen

I don’t see how that changes the calculus.

Republicans have more people in median quintiles, where people have more money to donate.

Anyway, there is no honor in being poor. Presumably nobody wants to be poor. I think it is interesting that people try to show that they represent the poor. I am more interested in representing Americans. In the last election cycle, more people voted for Republicans than Democrats. That means they represent more voters. That is all that really counts.

The other key point is that Republicans get more money from individual donors, while the Dems get more of theirs from organized interest groups.


All this doesn’t necessarily say anything bad about the Dems. It only means that they have no moral authority to accuse the Republicans of doing what they do.

Phx8

Right - Iraq bad, Exxon bad, global warming bad. That sums it up from the Dem point of view, but it doesn’t apply here.

Posted by: Jack at February 18, 2006 7:35 PM
Comment #127199

Jack,
You’re pretending that equivalent amounts of money coming from different sources means the sources must have the same potential to be corrupting.

For example, let’s say Greenpeace could somehow give as much to Democrats as Exxon gives to Republicans. Does that mean both Greenpeace and Exxon are “fat cats”? After all, it was the same amount of money. And does that mean “money corrupts politics” on an equal basis regardless of the source, regardless of whether the money comes from Greenpeace or Exxon?

I’d be more interested in seeing the total net worth of the donors, the contracts they receive from the government, indications of the clout behind the donation. I’d be much more interested in seeing the legislation passed, and whether it represents a quid pro quo.

In the case of energy policy, in 2004 Exxon specifically recommended the US delegate to a recent climate change conference, Harlan Watson, and the Bush administration appointed him. Watson did everything in his power to prevent international cooperation on climate change.

“In briefing papers given before meetings to the US under-secretary of state, Paula Dobriansky, between 2001 and 2004, the administration is found thanking Exxon executives for the company’s “active involvement” in helping to determine climate change policy, and also seeking its advice on what climate change policies the company might find acceptable.”
Guardian, 2004

At some point a moral judgment becomes imperative. Is Iraq bad? Obviously. Is Global Warming bad? It’s much, much worse than you think. Is Exxon bad? The appropriate word is ‘evil.’

Posted by: phx8 at February 18, 2006 8:50 PM
Comment #127203

Jack-
Oh, it changes the calculus. It also changes the arithmetic.

Only in the congressional races did the Republicans beat the Democrats in individual fundraising in 2004, $217 to 176 million. At the same time, though, they also accepted more money from PACs. Proportionately, they accepted about the same ratio of PAC to Individual donors. Check it out with a calculator, if you will.

In the senate races, The Republicans got almost $7 million more from PACs, while Democrats got over 12 million more from individuals.

Of the $3.7 million in PAC money contributed in the 2004 presidential campaign, 2.9 million went to Bush, and the rest to Kerry. By contrast, for individual donations, Kerry got a total of $80 million dollars more in individual donations.

So when you say:

The other key point is that Republicans get more money from individual donors, while the Dems get more of theirs from organized interest groups.

All I have to say is that the numbers don’t justify your broad claim. In fact, it mostly invalidates it.

As for median quintile political spending, I strongly doubt that the contributors who provide the most money, those in the $1000+ range fall in that range. Maybe some of the upper middle class might feel comfortable giving $200 to $999 dollars away, but most Americans don’t even contribute, really. The average American is not the average contributor.

The percentage of people giving money in the Republican’s strongest range ($200-999) falls short of even being a quarter of a percent of the population. Put another way, for every campaign contributor at that level in 2002, there are more than 400 other Americans from the total population who did not contribute, or did not contribute enough to require official attention under campaign finance laws.

What I describe here profoundly affects the point you are trying to make. Even if campaign contributors were common in the population, and part of the middle class in general, it still would seem in the last election that two out of three times your generalization of where Democrats got their support. Being mostly wrong should have some effect on your calculus, if its describing anything real. That’s the time to recheck your math.

As for moral authority, maybe the politicians in Washington don’t have it, but I’d like to think the Democrats and others who despise the current crop of leaders out there have some. Seeing as how the people run this country, I don’t see how your relativism affects our personal feelings on the subject.

Regardless of what sins the Democratic leadership may have committed (and which the Republicans have often exaggerated), what the Republicans are doing now in terms of the K Street project, the cronyism in the Bush Administration, and other abuses are simply wrong. Now you can bring up as many of our leaders’ failings as you want to, but that does not cleanse or purify your leaders of their guilt or Washington of their corruption.

As for Exxon, the oil Companies? I can tell you on general principle I don’t object to big business, or big oil. I’ve had quite a few family members work for them, and my city was built on it in many ways.

But that appreciation for what they do does not relieve them of the obligation to act as good corporate citizens. Corporations are legally obligated to turn a profit, but that’s not the only legal obligation they have or should have.

As for Global Warming, the real problem isn’t necessarily that things are going to turn out like they did in that Kevin Costner movie. No, the trouble is, the effect of being wrong on this will be both inescapable, and impossible to anticipate. I think it’s better to change our behavior now, while we have a chance to reverse some of the damage, than wait till later, and likely get a stronger dose of bad news for our intellectual and political laziness.

The Public’s best interests cannot and should not be held hostage to the bottom lines of big business. The economy should not be the reason we let our society fall to pieces, nor the reason we allow short term corruption with dangerous long term consequences.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 18, 2006 8:56 PM
Comment #127206

max,free speach cuts both ways, as long as you dont tell someone what to do,as you clearly stated. you most blatantly imposed your own veiws, on nathan! your reference about your so called education, is unfounded as you did not learn how to read. were did i or nathan state we hated the union! so max dont put words in other peoples mouths!by the way you clearly sterotyped nathan, but i guess you have that right because, of your education. that you paid for, r brown

Posted by: r brown at February 18, 2006 9:02 PM
Comment #127215

I thought the break-down was very interesting. Seems most of the wealthy/rich - Banks, lawyers, doctors, etc. want to keep things their way, while the workers and Laborers want a change.

Posted by: Linda H. at February 18, 2006 9:51 PM
Comment #127226

Stephen,
I’m intentionally using Exxon as an example of a corporation which is acting in an evil manner, to the detriment of nearly every living being on the planet. Exxon supports the Republican party, not the Democrats; Exxon plays a major role in writing Bush administration energy policy; and this corrupt relationship is harmful far beyond the sum donated to the Republican party.

To suggest Exxon’s donations are no more or no less important than others is obscene and immoral. It’s an intentional effort to obfuscate the issue.

Does this mean all oil companies are evil, or all Big Business contributors to Republican causes? No, of course not. Well, maybe. :-) But the collusion of the Republican party, the Bush administraton, and Exxon is an evil act, and harmful to every one of us.

For example, the Global Climate Coalition united several large corporations in an effort to undermine addressing the issue of climate change. To their credit, once the evidence became overwhelming, large corporations withdrew. To its credit, BP was the first Big Oil participant to recognize a need to address climate change.

And so, I am being pretty vocal about the need to recognize the differences involved in seemingly equal political campaign donations. The same amounts of money from different organizations do not reflect equally influential results.

Posted by: phx8 at February 18, 2006 10:21 PM
Comment #127246

Stephen

Republicans get more total money because they have a larger donor base. I don’t deny that nor do I feel it is a bad thing. My income is better than average, but I am not rich. Nevertheless, I have contributed to Republicans even when I made less than the medina income. It creates (and created) a bit of a hardship, but I consider it my duty to put some of my money and time behind what I believe. If similarly situated Democrats don’t want to do this, it is their problem and I feel no sympathy.

The tables from the non partisan Open Secret data base speak for themselves. Why do we need to spin it? They don’t say anything particularly bad about either party, nothing particularly good either. It does pop some of the Dem feeling of virtue, but that’s life.

Phx8

I saw George Soros give a speech in 2004. He was talking about the evils of money in politics, and then he told the audience that he was going to spend millions to try to defeat George Bush. Somebody asked him if that wasn’t a contradiction. He said (I paraphrase) that he deployed his money only for good. I thought he was joking and laughed politely. He was serious. Evidently he thought it was bad for rich guys to use their millions to influence politics, except if it was him.

It is good to be sure that you are on the side of truth, justice and the American way, but curious that you can maintain that absolute certainty when more than half of your fellow voters have the bad habit of voting for the wrong guys.

Cassandra had a rough time of it and so do those who think they are.

I am not saying you should not put your time, energy and passion into doing what you think is right. That is the duty and satisfaction of every good person. But in our pluralistic society you have to entertain the theoretical possibility that other people might be doing the same thing on the other side and they may not always be wrong.

BTW - As I mentioned above, I sometimes work and contribute to politics. I have never received any personal benefit beyond an occassional free pizza. I try to do it strategically and I try to ensure that my resources are used where they do the most good. To the extent that I am right, my results will be more influential and leveraged than the Dems. This is part of the process. I expect you to do the same on your side. I won’t complain if you are more clever than I am and I expect the same from you.

Posted by: Jack at February 18, 2006 11:34 PM
Comment #127247

max, just take a look,at the demography of the last election, bush vs kerry, ok now open up your mind, bush won do we agree on that?ok now back to demography, in the map of the united states, the republican party craved a 80% peice of the pie. you with me? the democrats carved out 20%, but what blows your idology that the republicans are the rich fat cats, is the area the democrats carried in that election, a strip starting at maine 60 miles wide all the way around the country, max ie from the ocean then go 60 miles inland, in that little bitty area is 70% the wealth in this country!and it went to the democrats! another myth put to bed. just look at the senate. the democrats, have 70% of the personal wealth there!more facts. now it is ok to be very wealthy if your a democrat,now on the other hand if your wealthy and a republican. you have to be evil, dirty, a cheat, take food away from children,ect,ect, the democrats are slowly losing there base! that had them in power for forty years, there motto to the masses FEAR,hate and false hope. r brown

Posted by: r brown at February 18, 2006 11:53 PM
Comment #127252

Dawn. I am not real happy with the direction of my union at all. They say they are there to help me? I guess cutting my benfits while the agents drive 65,000 dollar Cadillac trucks is helping me. And what really makes me sick is the fact that i half to be a member to work. (no right to work here in Michigan). I am thankful for my health care and my hourly wage as they both are good, but if you subtrac what i pay them to be a forced member its not worth it. In my line of work i could make good money anywhere.

Posted by: NathanH at February 19, 2006 12:11 AM
Comment #127255

I’m guessing the “r” in r brown does NOT stand
for Reading, wRiting or gRammer. I’m so glad that
the NEA spends so much of their money on future
Democrats edumacation! Speaking of which, I
looked up the definition of “fixate”. Part of the
psychological definition states…”a preoccupation
or obsession, an arrested excessive attachment,
the blocking of further development/hindering
maturity, sometimes leading to psychoses or
psychoneuroses”. Sound like anyone we know?

Posted by: Dale G. at February 19, 2006 12:17 AM
Comment #127259

max, just take a look,at the demography of the last election, bush vs kerry, ok now open up your mind, bush won do we agree on that?ok now back to demography, in the map of the united states, the republican party craved a 80% peice of the pie. you with me? the democrats carved out 20%, but what blows your ideology that the republicans are the rich fat cats, is the area the democrats carried in that election, a strip starting at maine 60 miles wide all the way around the country, max ie from the ocean then go 60 miles inland, in that little bitty area is 70% the wealth in this country!and it went to the democrats! another myth put to bed. just look at the senate. the democrats, have 70% of the personal wealth there!more facts. now it is ok to be very wealthy if your a democrat,now on the other hand if your wealthy and a republican. you have to be evil, dirty, a cheat, take food away from children,ect,ect, the democrats are slowly losing there base! that had them in power for forty years, there motto to the masses FEAR,hate and false hope. r brown

Posted by: r brown at February 19, 2006 12:27 AM
Comment #127261

Dale,
Don’t take my word for it. Cassandra never had so much company. The largest meeting of Christian churches in a decade just took place. They apologized to other nations for “the violence, degradation and poverty our nation has sown.”
They “also warned the United States was pushing the world toward environmental catastrophe with a “culture of consumption” and its refusal to back international accords seeking to battle global warming. “We lament with special anguish the war in Iraq, launched in deception and violating global norms of justice and human rights,” said the statement from representatives of the 34 U.S. members of World Council of Churches. “We mourn all who have died or been injured in this war. We acknowledge with shame abuses carried out in our name.”

The World Council of Churches includes more than 350 mainstream Protestant, Anglican and Orthodox churches; the Roman Catholic Church is not a member. The U.S. groups in the WCC include the Episcopal Church, the Presbyterian Church (USA), the United Methodist Church, several Orthodox churches and Baptist denominations, among others.”

Jack,
If I recall, Cassandra was right. It’s not necessarily a matter of moral righteousness. Climate change is supported by scientific research. The actions of Exxon are motivated, not by fact, and not by what is right, but by what is profitable in the short-term. The Republicans are taking Exxon’s money, and they are complicit in furthering its agenda.

There is a very real and important difference between Republicans and Democrats. The latter favor fighting factors contributing to climate change.

Jack, I’m pretty sure you side with the Democrats on this one.

For the rest of you-

What’s your excuse?

Posted by: phx8 at February 19, 2006 12:38 AM
Comment #127263

dale,sounds like i hit a nerve! now just settle down, whats the old saying a fox smells its own hole first! now if you want to debate my last blog fell free! nope you just rather play the i am smarter than you game, just like i said in my last blog, dems plant that fear, hate,and false hope, weres your substance! just like kerry vs bush debates, were was kerrys substance.dale there is some hope for you, anger management, and of course lots of drug therapy. hang in there! r brown

Posted by: r brown at February 19, 2006 12:48 AM
Comment #127270

phx8,

does this mean you’re all for the UNIFICATION
of Church and State? Segments of the WCC are more
liberal than they are mainstream.

r brown,

we don’t totally disagree. And I’m not saying
you’re stupid. You can be book smart with a high
IQ, but have NO common sense. Some people can
have a lot of common sense, but ignorant in many
subjects. I’m just saying you might want to
brush up on your English grammer skills if you
want your valid opinions carry more weight in
certain circles…like here.

Posted by: Dale G. at February 19, 2006 1:28 AM
Comment #127280

dale, sorry about some of my grammer i will try to do a better job, the MS has done me no favors. but i try not to use it for an excuse,it is there, but sometimes well it flys past me. wish you the best! r brown.

Posted by: r brown at February 19, 2006 2:04 AM
Comment #127286

dale sorry about this. but did you mean opinions to carry more,,,, to. r brown,

Posted by: r brown at February 19, 2006 2:27 AM
Comment #127358

Did I speak about total money? That particular figure is more less an abstraction. No, I referred you to a number of pertinent pieces of specific information. Why did I do this? To put your claims about campaign finance to the test. Instead of taking your word for things, I looked for myself and found information that directly contradicted your points.

Spin is untestable interpretation, designed to subtly reframe and revise an uncomfortable truth for a political group. That’s not been my approach. My approach has been to see what’s true and what’s not. Your claim that Democrats were relying more on organized money (i.e., PACs) in their contributions was a testable one, one which failed the test when I discovered that in the Senate and Presidential races, the truth was actually the reverse. In the case of the presidency, the difference could not have been more plain: of $3.7 million in PAC money, Bush got about $3 million, and Kerry got about $0.7 million. In terms of individually raised money, Kerry won by a total of $80 million. The Senate races had the Democrats gain $12 million more in individual contributions, while the Republicans made $7 million more from the PACs.

Your intepretation, which says that the GOP is better at raising individual donations has to deal with the fact that the Democrats beat them in that in two out of three of those categories, including the presidential one.

Maybe for the GOP, that’s subject to interpretation and reinterpretation, but those are the facts, and by themselves what they say is that you’re wrong.

R. Brown-
Or maybe it’s that city populations tend to be more liberal, and the East is among the most urban regions in the country…

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 19, 2006 8:25 AM
Comment #127411

Stephen

Trying to go with your figures from 2004.

When I did the total percentages of Republican and Dem money from PACs, they both get about a third of their money.

Anyway, I disagree that PAC money is necessarily bad and surprised you do, since many of the biggest PACs involve NGO environmental organizations or labor unions.

The other problem with using this table is that it is not about Bush and Kerry. Fifteen Dem candidates are included. They were in primary battles.

If we go to Kerry/Bush we see that Bush got 32% and Kerry 31% from small donors. Getting from small donors means not much, when you consider that nutty Dennis Kucinich got 71% of his money from small donors. Maybe if these guys were smart enough not to vote for Kucinich they would have more money. I am glad they couldn’t give more.

You are right about the invidual donor idea. It was not part of my original post and I was taking off on another comment.

I am not really sure what you are trying to prove, however.

I don’t think that poor people are more virtuous than rich people. As I have aquired more money, there are many things that I can do that I couldn’t do before, including give money to political candidates. So what? If I was unemployed, I might have more time to contibute than money. When I retire, I might have both. That is why old people have so much clout. What would you do about these inbalances?


Posted by: Jack at February 19, 2006 12:27 PM
Comment #127426

r brown,

you got me. I usually try TO edit my writings
pretty thoroughly before I post. But I guess
we all can screw up from time TO time. Have a
good day.

Posted by: Dale G. at February 19, 2006 1:02 PM
Comment #127564

OK, I can’t sit back any longer and not say SOMETHING….

Is it just me, or does it appear that a certain “messenger” is being attacked, rather than the “message” at hand being discussed in a civilized ADULT manner? I mean for real, is it necessary to beat the dog that’s not even barking? I haven’t read anything from Max that comes across as even remotely rude and certainly not presumptuous, so how is he putting words in the the mouth of anyone? I think maybe it would be a good time for some to take a deep breath, enjoy a smoke, drink some coffee…do something besides make false accusations and pick fights with someone that isn’t even doing anything “wrong”.

I am completely neutral as far as the people on this site-I haven’t been around long enough to “get to know” any of you. So please don’t feel as if I’m just picking on specific people-I’m really not! Certainly I have my own views on politics, that’s why I’m here! ISn’t that why we’re all here?

And my last comment DOES specifically go out to one person:

R. Brown-I’m sorry to hear about your disease and I really do wish you the best from the bottom of my heart, but PLEASE do not use Multiple Sclerosis as your excuse for poor spelling and grammar. #1 they do have such a thing as spell check, and #2 my mother AND my grandmother have MS and they both have exemplary communication skills! We all make type-o’s, no big deal-and not all of us are as proficient as others, but for pete’s sake, don’t blame your grammar issues on your disease! That would be like saying I can’t accurately figure algebra because I’m a survivor of ovarian cancer. Also, I really think you’re being a little too hard on Max-I have read and re-read his posts and I really don’t see where he was out of line. Even so, he’s just as entitled to speak his mind as you are yours-and as long as noone is personally “attacking” each other, then what’s the harm? I have my own issues with unions, but I’ll keep them to myself cause I don’t want to be the next recipient of one of your bum-reaming posts! (that’s a joke, really!) Hey, if you wanna see out of line, go to the Tractor-By-Net website and see how Kubota lovers speak about John Deere in the JD forum! *grins*

Posted by: Tanya at February 19, 2006 9:26 PM
Comment #127566

R&P wrote: WHY ISN’T ANYONE ADDRESSING THE REAL ISSUE HERE!!!! Just like a republican to try and redirect from the real issue.

I’m sorry, did I miss something? I thought the “issue” here were the articles in reference to the “fat cats”? In that case, we ARE addressing the “real issue here”, are we not? So why make a derogatory comment referencing one’s political affiliation? I’m certain no Dems have ever “redirected from the real issue”. Course in the case of John Kerry, he could never make up his mind one way or the other….

Posted by: Tanya at February 19, 2006 9:35 PM
Comment #127567

Dawn wrote: One of us is dyslexic.

Kerry’s here???? *grins*

Posted by: Tanya at February 19, 2006 9:37 PM
Comment #127597

tanya,i am glad you know what ms is, so you happened to like what max said, hey thats your bag, i did not. yes i did get angry at him and said some things i should have thought about before i said them. as i said i dont try to use it for a excuse, but tanya your a very mean spirted person, and to beat on a person with a health problem, shows you have no heart at all.and my response to dale, debate me on the substance, same for max, substance, same for you tanya substance, i think me and dale are ok now but you tanya have crossed way over the line, i fell sorry for you that you would have to resort to such cheap shots just to make yourself feel good, the only thing i could say is i wish you were in this body for a year! rod brown.

Posted by: r brown at February 19, 2006 11:03 PM
Comment #127694

R Brown: In regards to your statements that I “beat on a person with a health problem”, shows that I “have no heart at all” and “i wish you were in this body for a year” Here’s a deal for ya-how about if you take my ovarian cancer in exchange for your MS? Heck you can gladly have my arthritis, 4 herniated lumbar discs, hemmorrhoids, migraines and IBS to add to the mix for that year! Here’s a quote from you “i dont try to use it for a excuse” but then in the same breath you imply that it’s the reason for your errors? Well if that’s the case, then with all of my current (and past) medical conditions I shouldn’t be able to type at all! Furthermore, I didn’t say that I liked or didn’t like what Max had to say, what I said was that he didn’t say anything remotely out of line and that I felt you were critiquing the messenger rather than the message, which it’s my understanding, is NOT the goal of this forum. I didn’t take a “cheap shot” at you, I simply asked that you not use your illness as your excuse because I know for a FACT that people (such as my mom, g’ma and Montel Williams, just to name a few of the MANY), can use correct spellin and grammar, therefore you must have other reasons for making SO MANY errors. SHEESH! Rather than point fingers at me saying I’m trying to make myself “feel good”, perhaps you should look in the mirror and see that you are trying to make others feel pity for you? As far as “cheap shots” go, wasn’t it you who, in the other thread, proposed that I know nothing of medicine other than how to give birth and wanted to know when I got my degree in Psychology, while you are the know all of medicine because you’re an optician? (Funny I don’t see an MD next to YOUR name either!) Well as I told you in there, I am a licensed Paramedic, work fire/rescue as well as in the process of completing a dual Bachelor’s degree in Business (minor in Psychology) and Masters degree in Psych., so I DO just so happen to know a wee bit more about medicine than you had presumed. What I’m wondering is why it is that I wasn’t the only one that commented on the fact that you need to proofread your comments prior to posting them, yet I’m the one you feel compelled to lash out at? Perhaps you should re-read the part where I tried to lighten things up in hopes to avoid this kind of animosity, but apparently MS must make it difficult for you to see ANY good in me at all (other than making babies, that is….).

My sincere apologies to our fellow readers-I never would have guessed that a comment about gross grammatical errors would lead to such bitterness! And is it any wonder why I was hesitant to post anything about my Republican preferences? Sheesh! (Ironically, I began perusing this site because it’s SUPPOSED to be a “Republicans and Conservatives” site, not an ANTI-Bush one) Anyhoo…. I can assure you all that this will NOT continue to be an issue, not from my end anyway. I will forego the forum completely before I’ll engage in any further back and forth bull with Mr. Brown on this matter…

Posted by: Tanya at February 20, 2006 5:00 AM
Comment #127806

FYI,
Heres a suggestion instead of a criticism.
This has nothing to do with the topic, however, may I suggest that those who have problems with spelling (such as myself) you might try to cut and paste your comments into your e-mail program, run a spell check and then post it. That’s what I do. While it’s not perfect it tends to work for me.

Posted by: Linda H at February 20, 2006 1:07 PM
Comment #127816

It’s obvious that corporations and rich fat cats give all their money to Republicans to save their butts. That’s where money is being given disproportionately.


All politicians do it and unfortunately it’s been like that for quite awhile. And what Nate was trying to say is the union that is supposed to be the “champion of the individual worker” has as little oversight in their spending as the government does. We complain about how our government spends money, I think it is perfectly fine for him to question how these funds are donated to political campaigns, instead of helping to pay for benefits, safer working conditions, contract negotiations, etc.

No, political campaigns definately more important

Posted by: OU812 at February 20, 2006 1:36 PM
Comment #128031

Jack-
Your main point was emphasizing the counterintuitive notion that the Democrats, traditionally the party of the people, where more in bed with the Fat Cats than we were.

My point, in each case has been to present you with flaws in critical parts of that argument. First flaw is in assuming that the average campaign donor is of average means. Second flaw is in the old Mona Charen argument about us having most of the million dollar donors- true, but misleading as to where most of our money and the GOP’s money is coming from. 3rd flaw is in the one that implies individual donations are lower amongst the Democrats and higher among the Republicans, and vice versa for the PAC donations. As you can see, I haven’t objected randomly at all.

Tanya-
Have you considered that he might not have the dexterity to bounce all over the keyboard, given his neurological tissue damage?

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at February 20, 2006 10:59 PM
Comment #128059

tanya every comment, i made to you was ,in response to your attack the messenger and not the message, and yes stephen not quite as fast as i was fifteen years ago. i would say this in my defense, go back to all the messages, and read them and see for yourself. who started the attacks on me first,i clearly responded to the attacks, and that is a right that the framers gave to all of us .i did not cry on anyones shoulder, i did not try to make allies with other peoples. i took it on the chin then fired back i understand ones passion to debate the substance, but dam it i am not going to back down, from attacks, on me and my character, and i am sure you all feel the same way about yourselfs. and i respect that. stephen i believe you said your grandfather was in ww2 that was a very noble thing .my father went from normandy to germany. and my grandfather fought in ww1, i also was in the service.and i really take my hat off to the kids today in iraq i pray for them, and hope for there very speedy return back home by the way stephan ive been billing those gd insurance companys most of the day for services i provided, the big laugh is when they pay, and how much they pay! ohy it hurts me.rodney brown

Posted by: rodney brown at February 21, 2006 12:27 AM
Comment #128083

ou812 yes thanks for your insight about the unions.i said some things to max about his union bashing. hey max no hard feelings. but i could also relate to nate i understood his frustration because of my 26 years in a union. i dont care to hear the word wallmart! i have seen many mom and pop businesses close in this country. good hard working people who had to shut down because of wallmart. talk about money how much is that family worth and all off the backs of there workers excuse me part time team members! come on waltons spread some of the wealth, be fair. rodney brown.

Posted by: rodney brown at February 21, 2006 2:06 AM
Comment #128101

tanya for the sake of prosperity i offer a olive branch,my mom raised me to be a gentleman. and sadly i have been lacking in that area.i really did not want to come across as a whine bag. but i also am very outspoken.dalt! as you have seen! also if you want you can partly blame my daughter holly for this new xp computer. also one of the greatist persons i will ever know and love my mother passed away january 28th sorry for the sob story. but first the shock wore off now it is reality. my daughter has been such a great support. if i was insensitive please accept my apologies. by the way i am very moderate. and you will see me swimg both ways!as you continue to blog on! yikes i better get to bed. your friend i hope rodney brown.

Posted by: rodney brown at February 21, 2006 3:22 AM
Comment #128183

JBOD said: “Would it be acceptable to view campaign term limits as a means of accomplishing what VOID wants? If the goal of VOID is to put incumbents on notice, and remove a lot of them as part of the message, it seems like term limits would do that.”

VOID has supporters who support term limits. VOID has supporters who don’t support term limits.

My view: term limits is just another gimmick to let the public off the hook of having to pay attention and cast an informed vote.

In addition, term limits supplant the free exercise of the vote by limiting a voter’s choices. Every voter should be free to vote for any person who meets the minimum Constitutional qualifications in my opinion.

THE VOID site has a steady stream of daily visitors and our page reads are consistently between 2 and 3 per visit, meaning the folks who visit are definitely interested in What we have to say and What we are about.

There will be several important news items coming over the next several weeks at Vote Out Incumbents for Democracy, or VOID.

We are about to surface from a protracted period of analyzing the 510(c) and 527 IRS Codes for tax exemption and incumbent restrictions in addition to the FEC reg’s. The Board is about to make a decision in the next week.

Posted by: David R. Remer at February 21, 2006 11:07 AM
Comment #128221

ph8:

“For example, let’s say Greenpeace could somehow give as much to Democrats as Exxon gives to Republicans. Does that mean both Greenpeace and Exxon are “fat cats”? After all, it was the same amount of money. And does that mean “money corrupts politics” on an equal basis regardless of the source, regardless of whether the money comes from Greenpeace or Exxon?”

Perhaps you should consider that all Americans don’t concur with your assumption that certain PACs and their goals are acceptable. Many environmental PACs have engaged in activities that I consider reprehensible and I would not choose to support their agendas.

As I have stated on other threads, I feel that while there is evidence of global warming, there is not sufficient evidence of causality linking greenhouse gas with the warming. One theory of global climactic change posits that these changes are natural cycles which are too long to be accurately analyized with the data that we have collected. Some experts, and I, think that a reduction of greenhouse gas would not have a significant effect on the current rate of change.

Given that these are my beliefs, then I feel that PAC donations to solicit kyoto type limitations on US industry are exactly the same as any other PAC, attempts to influence policy through the donation of wealth. Similiar arguments could be made by persons who object to environmental policies regarding land usage in wetlands or commercial development for timber production.

Everyone doesn’t see environmental lobbyists as soldiers fighting the good fight for everyone’s benefit, so it is unfair to say that their efforts to influence policy are “good” while other lobbyist actions are “evil”.

Posted by: goodkingned at February 21, 2006 1:49 PM
Comment #128222

Tanya and all the rest of the secretarial pool:

Criticizing people for their typing skills is kind of like criticizing someone’s ideas because you don’t like their shirt.

Posted by: goodkingned at February 21, 2006 1:53 PM
Comment #128291

goodkingned,

soooo you’re saying that good English skills
are right up there in importance… with fashion?
You wouldn’t happen to be a “gay” public school
teacher would you?

Posted by: Dale G. at February 21, 2006 5:45 PM
Comment #128413

Goodking wrote: “Tanya and all the rest of the secretarial pool:

Criticizing people for their typing skills is kind of like criticizing someone’s ideas because you don’t like their shirt.”

Well….if the shirt fits….

Posted by: Tanya at February 22, 2006 1:19 AM
Comment #128418

Tanya and Dale:

Go ahead and be yourself. But I’m not going to sit next to you at recess.

Posted by: goodkingned at February 22, 2006 1:31 AM
Comment #128419

Goodking wrote: “Tanya and Dale: Go ahead and be yourself. But I’m not going to sit next to you at recess.”

Aww, that’s just cause you’ll be in detention! *grins*

You know its fun to debate, admit it! ;-)

Posted by: Tanya at February 22, 2006 1:34 AM
Comment #128421

Rodney said: “if i was insensitive please accept my apologies. by the way i am very moderate. and you will see me swimg both ways!as you continue to blog on! yikes i better get to bed. your friend i hope”

I, too, offer my apologies….and bid you a good night.

Tanya

Posted by: Tanya at February 22, 2006 1:38 AM
Comment #128426

Tanya:

No apologies needed. I’ll pick you first at softball.

Goodnite.

Posted by: goodkingned at February 22, 2006 2:17 AM
Comment #129226

tanya when i said i swimg both ways,(swing) i did not mean both ways in that way, ha ha!!!!!! have a good one. dale g.a gay public school teacher!. thats cool! it is a free country! ie dry humor!! goodkingned , shus up ! i still can run those bases! rodney brown.

Posted by: rodney brown at February 24, 2006 4:41 PM
Comment #129272

Numbers by themselves do not always tell the whole story. It isn’t a math problem, per se… I do not believe that America has a science or a math problem… it has a logic, history and civics problem. There are lies, damn lies and statistics. People need to be critical consumers of information, regardless of where it comes from.

What we need to look at are the underlying picture of what numbers tell us. I am not a big fan of multiple links… I do not want to spend half my time looking up and reading what I hope will be summarized in a statement with supporting links if I want to verify the veracity of the claims.

The one I did look at was the listing of the top 20 contributors to both parties. Why was I not surprised? The Democrats have always been the party of the working class… thus the support from labor unions does not surprise me.

What are their concerns? A decent wage for the workers. Workplace safety. Workers benefits such as retirement and health. Should they support the Republicans who are traditionally the party of the business estabilshment? Maybe they are concerned that we have lost 2% of our wages after adjusting for inflation in the past couple of years while the rich are getting richer? That companies are eliminating retirement benefits while posting record profits? That the oil companies posted a record $10 Billion profit while “not soaking” us consumers. That the Republicans gave the HMOs a $22 Billion gift in a republican only closed meeting!

They have everyone watching the one hand (someone poor getting a bit more than you think they should from the taxpayer while the give away billions!!! Talk about penny wise and pound foolish!

Note now… this was only the Top 20 List. Without clearly understanding that, it makes it look like the Dems are getting so much more money than the Republicans.

Now, there are thousands and thousands of companies out there. Some contribute individually, some through trade orgainzations and personal contributions… so look at the total number of contributors and the total contributed. There are fewer unions than companies, so I would see that they are contributing more….

It only makes sense, a few unions representing workers across a wide spectrum of industries, thus a larger donation because there are fewer unions than companies.

Of course people want to make aspersions about trial lawyers. Would these same people not get a lawyer if charged with a crime? If they lost a loved on to a poorly designed appliance or lost their money to a corrupt company? What if their doctor cut of the wrong limb? Dispensed the wrong medicine?

People want to throw out the baby with the bath water when they complain about some granny and a hot cup of coffee. Or idiots who want to sue MacDonalds because they are fat.

Posted by: Darren7160 at February 24, 2006 8:12 PM
Post a comment