Thursday, March 10, 2011

Who is buying influence

Spartikus at The Exile provided graphic presentations of political donations published at Sacha Peter's Election 2013. The data informs of the divergent boundary inexorably cleaving the privileged class of citizens from commoners in this province.

BC Liberals thrive with generous financial support of business. Additionally, they use public funds to reward supporters and punish critics by politically directed spending. Broadcasters and publishers, with eyes on government and provincial agency ad revenues, remain in tight supporting ranks. NGOs, worried about grants from gaming funds, are intimidated into silence about social issues. Big time cash providers are rewarded with tax and royalty cuts, no-bid contracts, self-regulation schemes to minimize environmental commitments and instant access to the corridors of power. Everyone wins except ordinary citizens and future generations.

In 2008 and 2009, BC Liberals took in contributions of $20 million. Individuals annually donating under $250 provided 4.6%. More than 95% of BC Liberal party funds came from larger donors, 75% of it from corporations, many in five and six figure amounts.

In 2008 and 2009, BC NDP took in contributions of $9.6 million. Individuals annually donating under $250 provided 31%. Under 70% of NDP funds came from larger donors, 28% of it from labor unions.
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  1. Norm,
    I have been keeping an eye on this post today.
    To see these graphs should send shrills up everyone's backs. Kind of explains to me where we are and also the reason.
    Where are everyone's thoughts??

  2. Random thoughts:

    -I think in the public's mind corporate power and union power in BC politics cancel each other out. That is clearly not the reality.

    -I was surprised at the role played by individual donations play in both party. By the small % in the BC Libs, and the large % in the BC NDP

    -The almost invisible role played by non-profits, which illustrates the utter emptiness of the arguments of Vivian Krause and her continuing series of op-eds in the National Post/Vancouver Sun.

    I don't think the difference b/w the 2 parties could be more starker.

  3. I don't understand how these donations translate into votes...shouldn't the higher numbers of individual donations equal more votes? Just wishful thinking perhaps...

  4. When you start out well behind your competition, you need to get the maximum bang for the bucks! Recent NDP election campaigns have been absolutely pathetic wastes of money, most of the resources going into counter productive negative TV advertising. These ads do more to drive away potential supporters than anything the Greed Coalition can do. We need to start using the real wealth of the party, its members and activists, who can act at the community level as well as provincially.

    Recent NDP attempts to engage this potential army of volunteers are encouraging; let's hope the new leader understands our supporters are mostly not driven by the same forces as the Libs' and will respond negatively to negative campaigning!

    I suggest all NDP supporters with writing skills be active in the online debates taking place in the MSM as well as alternative media. Lately I have noted a majority of responses to some of the Sun and Province articles are coming from sources unfriendly to the Greed Coalition, and tend to be more rational than those from GC supporters.

    Open line shows offer an alternative for those who would rather speak than write, and often provide opportunities to put Liberals and there supporters on the spot.

    These tactics have worked well over the years in Cariboo, where we have elected NDP members in 4 of the past 6 elections, in a region not known for being a hotbed of support for the party!

  5. Hmmmm, it seems the participant who mentioned "We need to start using the real wealth of the party, its members and activists, who can act at the community level as well as provincially." hasn't been around many local offices to see the grinding work being done by members and executives, in communities all the time, not just during elections.



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