Friday, June 16, 2006

The Friday Furo Questus

Questus Furore - Paved With Good Intentions

Campaign finance reform. Everybody's favorite bad idea.

As the editors at NRO relate today in "Free Kirby Wilbur," well-intentioned campaign finance law ends up colliding with the First Amendment provision for free speech.

And don't expect it to stop with talk radio hosts who have an opinion and decide to do something about it. There have been calls to enforce the provisions of McCain-Feingold on the Internet, as well. And no one really knows how that could play out.

Here's Tyler's position on campaign finance regulation: none. No limits, no restrictions on who can say what when. The only regulation I would support is one that demands the complete and accurate reporting of funds donated to a candidate, and that those reports be made public. That way, it's clear who's supporting who.

If a company dumps a bunch of money into a campaign, the press would be free to notice and report it. And if a newspaper editor starts unfairly going after a candidate, that candidate would be free to raise funds and purchase advertising to counter the claims.

Money cannot be removed from politics - McCain-Feingold proved that. The money just found new loopholes to work through. The only way to get private money out is to replace it with public money - and don't you think that will invite worse corruption? Not to mention favoring incumbents over challengers even more.

Money cannot be removed from politics - so make it easier to trace, and then get out of the way. And let the system work.

Recommended Reading

The Editors of National Review Online, "Free Kirby Wilbur."

VDH, "Betting on Defeat?"

Jonah Goldberg, "Winning Is Not An Option."

Michael Ledeen, "Nonsense."

And check this out: the Saddam Dossier, detailing Saddam's links to terror organizations.

Thought of the Week
“Creating smoking holes gives our lives meaning and enhances our manliness.”
Lt. Colonel at a counter-terrorism conference
The Stupid Shall Be Punished.

Churchill Quote of the Week
"It was the nation and the race dwelling all round the globe that had the lion's heart. I had the luck to be called upon to give the roar."
Winston Churchill

And he did.




At 10:37 AM, Blogger j.m. said...

So you're saying apply free market principles to campaign finance? Hrm. Interesting idea. In theory, free markets are pretty efficient...

At 8:52 AM, Blogger Reach Upward said...

For the free market campaign finance thing to work, it not only needs to be completely transparent; it needs to be immediate. For example, any donation has to be posted on a publicly accessible (easily navigable) web page within one business day. And there needs to be some regulation about fronts that disguise the actual contributors.


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