3 Billion Dollars by Dana Williams


Three billion dollars. That's what this amazing election cost. That's quite a bit of money. And as Mark Weisbrot correctly notes in "Three Billion Dollar Campaign Ends in Gridlock" most of the bill was fronted by rich people and corporations (or is that corporations and *their* rich people?)

That number is pretty damn huge. With that number you could give 50 cents to every living and breathing human being on this planet. You could buy all of them a nice, candy bar. Right now I wish I had a candy bar instead of this immense campaign-hang-over-headache brought on by oodles and oodles of stupidity (by the politicians and their lap dogs in the media).

If you take that $3 billion and spread it among just those living in the US (maybe 276 million or so), each person could receive a check in the mail for eleven dollars. That's a not-too-shabby meal out at a not-too-shabby restruant. I sure wish Phillip-Morris and United Airlines had bought me a nice meal-- that would've been a lot kinder of them.

Some would argue that such an amount is well worth it for working people-- it's a great bargain for democracy!! Sure, I guess it would be, huh? Too bad that we've elected another rich, Ivy-League educated, straight, white male to the highest office in the land. This in a day and age when 51% of the population is female. 82 percent of the population may still be "white", but where's the rest of our diversity? Where's all the blue-collar, non-straight, non-protestant, high-school educated (maybe "some college") types? Why don't they ever "get" to represent this country by holding public office?

Quite honestly, people aren't getting a lot of results for their 11 bucks. The gap between rich and poor is growing, millions of children are going to bed hungry every night, two million people are homeless, another two million are locked up in jail (an increasing number for drug crimes), and although the economy is "booming", real wages (adjusted for inflation) have declined steadily for quite awhile.

Maybe it's a good thing I didn't eat that fancy 11 dollar meal, after all... I feel sick.


Stand Not Run