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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

527s: As American as Apple Pie

JAY UPTON
JAY UPTON

527s really irritate me. I mean you outlaw “soft money” in 2002 and up pops this little loophole that truly drives me nuts.

What is a 527? It’s the IRS tax code for a non-profit organization (there’s more to it, but that will suffice for my purposes). In 2002 Congress passed a bill making unlimited contributions to political parties illegal, and opened the door for these little guys.

What do 527s do? They allow people to spend unlimited funds so as to “inadvertently” campaign for a candidate. I mean, come on, how can we, the American people, actually expect Bush and Kerry to run their campaigns on a mere quarter-of-a-billion dollar budget? Asking politicians to run campaigns with the equivalent of most third world countries’ GDP is just crazy talk. They need more money. If you can’t get your message out to voters with a $250 million budget then you might want to simplify your schtick a little more.

Who are these crazy little 527s? Moveon.org and Swift Boat Veterans for Truth are probably the two most prominent now. But they have nothing to do with John Kerry or George Bush.

About the whole “they’re not connected thing,” I don’t buy it. I’m sorry, I just don’t buy that a bunch of swift boat veterans got together out of hatred for John Kerry and put together this organization, under appropriate tax codes, to bash Kerry.

On the other hand, if Moveon.org got any more leftist they’d be going around wearing little hats with red stars and addressing each other as “comrade.”

So why not let them say whatever they want? It’s a free country (well, kinda). Why? Because they are being allowed to influence people in favor of a particular candidate. So instead of saying, “Well, here is what George is going to do, and here is what John is going do, now pick one,” you have organizations saying, “John’s a hero and George is a fraud,” and some others saying, “John lied and George is our savior.”

But what’s that you say? Isn’t that what our election system is, people just throwing crap at each other till a percentage of America votes in November? Yes, that’s what our election system is, but you know what? I can see enough crap in newspapers, I don’t need 527s giving me their opinions, especially because it’s so coincidently lined up with the candidates’ stances. Interesting, huh? Two-hundred-and-fifty million dollars still isn’t enough. They need more. 527s are just another way for money to sneak its way into politics. Isn’t that just what we need–more money in politics.

So believe it or not, the 527s are here, and they’re just another loophole for money to make its influence felt. That’s just what I wanted: more people to tell me what’s the “truth.” I want to know the truth, so as long as it’s not financially sponsored.