Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Do Big Campaign Donations Efficiently and/or Reliably Deliver the Votes in Heavily Contested Local Political Campaigns?

Two of the most thought-provocative articles we've ever seen yet, concerning the question of whether big campaign donations efficiently and/or reliably deliver the votes in heavily contested local political campaigns

We've left yesterday's 2011 Ogden City Municipal Primary Election Results page up at the top of the WCF Front Page up for most of the morning today (in order to squeeze out every last WCF reader comment possible.) Looks like that WCF article, the second most-read WCF article in over two years, seems to be finally "tapped out," comment-wise, however.

"Time marches on", as the old saying goes, so we now have some "chewy" new "political nuts-and-bolts" material to dwell on, submitted thusly via email by regular WCF contributor Dan Schroeder:
Hi Rudi,

I put a new article up on the Ogden Ethics Blog yesterday, and another quick one today. Care to highlight them on WCF?

Lo & Behold... Gentle Dan's wish is our command; and we accordingly provide links to each of these two new highly-cerebral and deeply analytical articles, set forth below in chronological order:
In the wake of yesterday's Ogden City Municipal Primary Election balloting, we're pleased to present a couple of the most thought-provocative articles we've ever seen yet (anywhere), concerning the oft-lightly considered, narrow question of whether big campaign donations efficiently and/or reliably deliver the votes in heavily contested local political campaigns.

Don't let the cat get yer tongues, O Gentle Ones.

So what say you about all this?


Althepal said...

I don't think you can just focus on the dollar figures.  Godfrey raised the most campaign money ever for his mayoral campaign in 2007, but he only beat a heavily underfunded Susan Van Hooser by about one percent that year.

Other important factors always figure into the mix. 

good_reader1 said...

With unlimited funds not accountable by name from companies and corporations the next elections will be interesting. Following the Koch brothers and their money donated to think tanks to come up bogus reports, who can we trust?

BlameJohnsonNotMe said...

Well, Ogdenites have chosen their medicine and it seems more of the same is clearly what they want and deserve, or did Ogden corporations get what they want? Mike Caldwell (Godfreyite) and Brandon Stephenson (Godfrey Sockpuppet), both heavily financed by Ogden area corporations and well meaning citizens have made it through. Watch and wait to see if one of these "soon to be mayors" appoints Mayor Godfrey to his administration, hires him as a consultant or keeps him around in some fashion. It would be great to see Mike finally share his views if he takes office. Keep a close eye on the golf course, the east bench and other "protected but under developed areas" in the community as he seems to be a real "tax, spend, develop and cut deals" kind of guy.

FYI. Mayor Godfrey was seen personally hustling in voters for Mike Caldwell on a busy street corner along with Dan McEntee, owner of Binghams Cyclery, a huge benefactor of the River Project which has gone bust since. This is the same Mayor Godfrey who was invited to a Critical Mass ride sponsored by Skyline Cyclery and Mayor Godfrey showed up for the ride in a Binghams Cyclery jersey. LOW CLASS! It also made the front page of the Standard Examiner, complete with a full frontal of the Binghams jersey! It also seems Roosters Restaurant and their owners Pete and Kym Buttschardt continually receive free marketing, free promotions and lots of perks for being FOM's. They are also recipients of lots of downtown Ogden perks, mentions and fanfare. Do all businesses fare this well in this fine city? Does your Ogden area business receive this kind of free advertising and financial considerations from the city administration? When the new mayor is put into office, it would behoove you to contact him and insure your business shares the limelight with the companies who financed his campaign.

BTW, a challenge to the companies and individuals who donated funds to the political campaigns of the two winners to donate the same amount to the Rescue Mission, Salvation Army or St. Annes Shelter just to prove to themselves that this was not politically motivated and they had nothing to gain from making the donation. $5,000 can feed a lot of people and in this economy and God knows they could use it!

Danny said...


Blame Johnson is dreaming.  Amazing that one of the most cynical but perceptive people here is still out in left field.

He refers to the campaign cash given to Godfrey or Caldwell as "donated" and then suggests they "donate" to a charity as well.

Let's give him the benefit of the doubt and suppose he was simply using parallel wording. 

But please, the massive sums given to Caldwell were not "donations", they were "advance payments" for services to be rendered.  They were "investments" that are expected to be paid at least 100 times over.

And Caldwell will pay them at least 100 times over.  Congratulations to all the fools who voted for that crony hack just because he cooled his heels a few nights sitting on Weber Pathways.  Suckers!  What a lesson this election was.  Naivete knows no bounds.  It is forever green, always new, always reborn.  Everybody wants to believe.  Everybody wants to imagine people are something they clearly are not.  Mike Caldwell is the messiah!  He is not a dull witted hireling of the establishment!  Why, I saw him at a Weber Pathways meeting!  Duuuuuuh! 

Dan's charts are great.  Money talks.

As far as yesterday being a day with large commentary on this blog, I note again that the Geigers, Rupert Hitzig, and those imbeciles were always good for generating traffic to this blog.  People always show up to laugh at a parade of clowns, and always will.

Bob Becker said...

In re: "Dan's charts are great.  Money talks."

Careful, Danny.  The charts show that Stephenson depended more heavily than any other major contender in the race on small contributions from many people rather than large contributions [the ones you call "massive"] from a few.  Does that make him the "candidate of the people" in the run off?  

Somehow, I don't think so.  

BlameJohnsonNotMe said...

Danny, I stand humbly corrected and three lashes should be sufficient to insure I do not make this type of blunder again.  Let the clown parade begin! 

Danny said...

You are a class act, BJ.

OneWhoKnows2 said...

Is Godfrey going to take his left-over campaign funds of $80K+ with him or donate them to charity?  What say you Matt?

Anonymousemployee said...

He's not going anywhere-both of these numbskulls will kick Johnson to the curb when elected, Matt has no future anywhere else.

Smaatguy said...

Look a little deeper into the cyclery down on the river....take a look at what they paid per SF for thier land in comparison to what they were trying to sell the piece to the west of it 4 years ago,....nearly believe Scottie Brown is one of the silent owners of that little setup....go figure

Googleboy said...

I have only one comment about the sudden surge of popularity of this Mike Caldwell, who was generally a political unknown until a few brief weeks ago.

Hey Everybody We're All Gonna Get Laid

thom said...

Dan, how would you interpret your two charts?  The folks who spent the most per vote didn't get many votes.  So what should we conclude from that?  Similarly, I'm not sure that the other chart is all that informative.  Yes, it tells us how many contributions of various sizes each candidate received, but absent some context for those contributions I'm not sure what we can make of this.  Not all contributions, even large ones are the same.  I could give a $1000 to a candidate simply because I want to see that person win -- I like her stance on issues that are important to me.  At the same time, someone else could give $1000 to the same candidate because he has a specific business interest in the city and is hoping this candidate will further that interest.  Two very different $1000 contributions. 

Dan S. said...

There's a lot of detailed information in the charts, so I won't try to give a simple verbal summary or explanation. Let the charts speak for themselves!

WCF Reader said...

So you ivory tower elitists "can't and won't" explain it to the unwashed masses in "common" terminology?

No surprises here at all, professer.

I'll make it a point to disregard all your ivory tower posts from here on.

BStalksWalks said...

"There's a lot of detailed information in the charts, so I won't try to
give a simple verbal summary or explanation. Let the charts speak for

What complete and utter BULLSHIT!

Dan S. said...

Please pardon the tone of my earlier comment. Although you may not be reading this one, let me try again:

The information contained in the charts is complex, and that's why I felt that the best way to present it was through charts. I did point out a few interesting aspects in the discussion that accompanies the charts, but I cannot find a simple way to summarize their full content in words. In fact, if I could have summarized it in words, I would have done that instead of making the charts.

Ooglerupe said...

If you all miss me so much, I will grant you a guest editorial on small town politics anytime you  ask. Just check out today's New York  Times about blogs that are nasty and destructive to the fabric of small town relationships. Maybe you could learn something.

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