When every year is election year – 2012 Elections – Salon.com

12 Dec

The Presidential election season has become 4 years long. These numbers are insane! And the system is broken.

On money, the sky’s the limit. In 2000, the total federal election season cost $3 billion; in 2008, more than $5 billion, of which an estimated $2.4 billion went into the presidential campaign. With the Supreme Court having made it easier for outside money to pour in, thanks to its Citizens United decision, funding for campaign 2012 is expected to pass $6 billion and could even top $7 billion. The Obama campaign, which raised $760 million in 2008, is expected to pass the billion-dollar mark this time around (with money already pouring in from the financial and banking sector on which candidate Mitt Romney is also heavily reliant). …

It’s true that, on November 6, 2012, Americans will enter voting booths and choose a candidate for president, and that makes this an “election.” But thinking of it that way won’t get you far. It’s also true, that, on January 20, 2013, a newly elected president will step into the Oval Office. What any of this has to do with democracy, as opposed to spectacle, influence, corruption, the power of the incredibly wealthy to pay for and craft messages, and the power of media owners to enhance their profits is certainly an open question. Think, at least, how literally the old phrase “money talks” is being updated every time you hear the candidates, or see their ads, or get a robocall from one of them, or receive a geo-targeted mobile ad of theirs on your iPhone or Android.

via When every year is election year – 2012 Elections – Salon.com.

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