“Companies want to be able to quietly push for their political agendas without being held accountable for it by their customers. I think the 501(c)(4)’s are likely to outweigh super PAC spending, because so many donors want to remain anonymous.”
~Melanie Sloan, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington
From my perspective – the IRS should go after these 501 c4 groups that are clearly manipulating the tax code to ensure zero transparency of their donors. They are raising hundreds of millions of dollars to defeat our president to further deregulation, privatization and other laissez-faire economic models. This will be the first time probably in history that an incumbent President has less money than his challenger. They’re trying to buy our democracy.
Now – I’ve said this before but I don’t think you can say this too much. There are only two sides in this affair; you’re either with the billionaires and large corporations or you’re with the 99%. There is no middle ground here. The vast majority of money from billionaires and corporations is going to ONE side. The VAST majority. If you’re not intellectually agile enough to pick up on this … and you’re still apathetic – then you’re acting like a dead weight for the rest of us.
I want you to understand that these billionaires and their paid for politicians subscribe to and believe in only one economic model; it’s called “Horse and Sparrow”.
If you don’t know what “Horse and Sparrow” is – you need to read that HERE. Seriously.
The NY Times explains how these 3rd party groups like Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS are skirting the laws HERE:
Some of the biggest recipients of corporate money are organized under Section 501(c)(4) of the tax code, the federal designation for “social welfare” groups dedicated to advancing broad community interests. Because they are not technically political organizations, they do not have to register with or disclose their donors to the Federal Election Commission, potentially shielding corporate contributors from shareholders or others unhappy with their political positions.
Because social welfare groups are prohibited from devoting themselves primarily to political activity, many spend the bulk of their money on issue advertisements that purport to be educational, not political, in nature. In May, for example, Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies, a group co-founded by the Republican strategist Karl Rove, began a $25 million advertising campaign, carefully shaped with focus groups of undecided voters, that attacks Mr. Obama for increasing the federal deficit and urges him to cut spending.
The Internal Revenue Service has no clear test for determining what constitutes excessive political activity by a social welfare group. And tax-exempt groups are permitted to begin raising and spending money even before the I.R.S. formally recognizes them. Two years after helping Republicans win control of the House with millions of dollars in issue advertising, Crossroads GPS’s application for tax-exempt status is still pending.
All of these companies and their billions of anonymous donations are TAX EXEMPT.
Some examples of giving from corporations to Republican leaning 3rd party groups from the NY Times article:
American Electric Power – $1 million
Aetna – $7.5 million
Prudential – $1.6 million
Merck – $500k +
Dow Chemical – $1.6 million
Chevron – $500k +
MetLife – $500k +
If you want to see a list of the top 10 companies that have donated to candidates in 2012 click HERE. One thing I always hear is just how much Wall Street owns President Obama. In 2008 – they gave him a lot of money … and they didn’t get much for it. Tons of regulations later – they’re pissed. You’ll often hear that Obama is Goldman Sachs boy … but let’s go over the facts. Out of those top 10 companies – Goldman Sachs ranks 2nd overall in total contributions behind only Las Vegas Sands Corp i.e. Sheldon Adelson. How much does Goldman love Obama?> Total contributions (2012-ongoing):
Goldman political donations: $4,769,994
> Donations to Democratic Party: 29%
> Donations to Republican Party: 71%
> Spending on lobbying (2012-ongoing): $1,380,000
> Industry: Diversified Investments
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