Prior to their big convention in September, the Democrats running the show made a big to-do about not accepting any corporate donations to help put their main event together, since corporations don’t represent normal people but only evil, greedy fat cats, or something. In August, we learned that the ‘people’s convention’ wouldn’t be disclosing the sources of their donations until after the curtain dropped — and, shocker, now we know why. From Reuters:
The Democratic National Convention relied on at least $5 million in corporate donations, despite repeated pledges by top party officials only to use money raised from individuals.
Reports filed Wednesday with the Federal Election Commission show the convention’s host committee, Charlotte in 2012, raised $24 million, well short of its $36.7 million fundraising goal.
To help make up for the shortfall, committee officials spent $5 million raised directly from corporations to rent the cavernous basketball arena used as the convention hall. They spent nearly $8 million more from a line of credit provided by Charlotte-based Duke Energy Corp., the nation’s largest electricity provider. …
In addition to spending cash from corporate sponsors on direct convention expenses, records show much off the $24 million billed as being raised from individual donors came from special interest groups that employ lobbyists, corporate-funded foundations and the very wealthy.
And I quote:
“This convention will be different,” Wasserman Schultz said last year at the convention kickoff event in Charlotte. “We will make this the first convention in history that does not accept any funds from lobbyists, corporations or political action committees. This will be the first modern political convention funded by the grassroots, funded by the people.
I always wonder why politicians/parties/etcetera even bother making these types of promises (no corporate donations, “…then this is going to be a one-term proposition,” etcetera). It’s not so much that anybody actually cares that you used corporate profits (or that you’re running for a second term, cough cough), it’s that you promised you wouldn’t. You make a big deal out of it, and then the moment you’re in a pinch, you backtrack on your word.
I also wonder at the rampant hatred of corporations, just by virtue of them being corporations. Whether you’re reading this on a computer, a smartphone, or an iPad, that and the many other efficiencies and conveniences of modern-day life are brought to us by businesses seeking to make a profit by meeting our wants and needs through voluntary exchange, and succeeding at it while providing jobs and livelihoods to millions of ‘normal’ people along the way. Will the intellectually-empty populist appeals never cease?