A book review by Greg Palast for Firedoglake Book Salon
Using money to influence—ie. purchase—elections began when Thug gave Ugg a big, sharp rock in return for his vote for cave leader. It’s an ugly scene—and it has never stopped.
But with the advent of formalized democracy, purchasing a vote has gone through a psychological shift. With money, you can buy a voter’s neurons, board the brain like a pirate, and steal the booty—some poor schmuck’s “choice” made in a voting booth.
If political ads, balloons dropped at conventions, phone banks and all that detritus that makes for a US electoral campaign really can change a vote – and we know they can—then the candidate with the biggest pile of this partisan dreck, this mind-wrecking machine, has the best chance of winning. And as all this stuff costs money, the guy with the biggest pile is likely to have the I-just-won smile.
So this is what Tom Paine’s and Tom Jefferson’s democracy has come down to: sucking up bucks like a reverse ATM gone wild and spitting out (Show me more...)