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Libertarian Candidate Excluded From Debate For Refusing Corporate Donations

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the have-you-tried-turning-it-off-and-then-on-again dept.

Government 627

fishdan writes "I'm a long time Slashdot member with excellent karma. I am also the Libertarian candidate for U.S. Congress in the Massachusetts 6th District. I am on the ballot. I polled 7% in the only poll that included me, which was taken six weeks ago, before I had done any advertising, been in any debates or been on television. In the most recent debate, the general consensus was that I moved a very partisan crowd in my favor. In the two days since that debate, donations and page views are up significantly. Yesterday I received a stunning email from the local ABC affiliate telling me they were going to exclude me from their televised debate because I did not have $50,000 in campaign contributions, even though during my entire campaign I have pointedly and publicly refused corporate donations. They cited several other trumped up reasons, including polling at 10%, but there has not been a poll that included me since the one six weeks ago — and I meet their other requirements."

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627 comments

Why? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634931)

Because fuck third parties, that's why.

Re:Why? (4, Insightful)

PaulBu (473180) | about 2 years ago | (#41634957)

I would say, f*ck the first two! Or, do you have a very strong preference between R and D?

Paul B.

P.S. I'll wait a little bit more until changing my .signature...

Re:Why? (3, Interesting)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 2 years ago | (#41635455)

Out of curiosity, what made you run third party rather than trying to fix things from within? There are obstacles either way of course, was there something that made you convinced whichever party you were closer to ideologically was irreparably damaged? Did you consider, or did you run in a republican or democratic party?

Re:Why? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634977)

More like fuck the voting system that fucks the third parties.

Re:Why? (1, Insightful)

NatasRevol (731260) | about 2 years ago | (#41635469)

Uh, he's on the ballot. That kind of makes it not the voting system's fault.

I sincerely hope you win (1)

phil_aychio (2438214) | about 2 years ago | (#41634943)

despite the local ABC affiliate's biased efforts

And your point is? (5, Insightful)

kav2k (1545689) | about 2 years ago | (#41634947)

Not asking a question, not suggesting to act.
So what is it, just a story to tell?

Re:And your point is? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634959)

Free advertising from the Slashdot crowd.

Re:And your point is? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635011)

It is called Streisand effect, I believe. It could be put to good use. The networks cannot pull these stunts when the public knows about these.

Get someone else to report this (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634951)

With the author of the article being simultaneously the allegedly wronged party, this just sounds like whinging.

Re:Get someone else to report this (0)

fhuglegads (1334505) | about 2 years ago | (#41635425)

Since you used the word whinging I will assume you are British and have no idea how broken our political system is and are used to a parliamentary system which represents people in a weighted way. The US has a winner take all system that only allows 2 people to compete and they only get to compete if they are what the media and the corporations say is ok.

Business owns government. Government owns business (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634963)

These socio-economic forces work hand in hand with the same agenda. Sadly the American public thinks that there are really two controlling parties and business is on the outside of this circle of power except to write checks. The truth is that they're all one and the same.

Slashdotter in congress (4, Funny)

AwesomeMcgee (2437070) | about 2 years ago | (#41634979)

I'm not sure if I should be terrified or elated.

One things for sure, he's got my vote just to see how a slashdotter's trolling skills stand up in the big leagues.

Re:Slashdotter in congress (5, Funny)

cje (33931) | about 2 years ago | (#41635119)

"Mr. Speaker, I move that we... pour a bowl of hot grits down our pants!"

ok, I'll bite (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634985)

That's fucked up, How can we help?

I think we can help with one of these things.... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41634995)

Can we get a Slashdot poll for this guy? I'm sure he'll hit at least 10%.

Re:I think we can help with one of these things... (3, Funny)

SQLGuru (980662) | about 2 years ago | (#41635051)

But he wouldn't win against Cowboy Neal.

Re:I think we can help with one of these things... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635191)

You're too pessimistic. Hell, I'm sure he'd hit at least 8%!

Well, that was your mistake. (5, Insightful)

tekrat (242117) | about 2 years ago | (#41635003)

You should have accepted those donations. That doesn't means you have to listen to whoever is giving you money. In fact, if I was you, I'd take their check, and then do the exact opposite of whatever they are asking for.

Re:Well, that was your mistake. (4, Insightful)

Applekid (993327) | about 2 years ago | (#41635101)

Even if he did, the debates would have found some other reason to exclude him. This isn't actually about money at all, or, at least, his campaign money.

Re:Well, that was your mistake. (4, Funny)

Ichijo (607641) | about 2 years ago | (#41635463)

In fact, if I was you, I'd take their check, and then do the exact opposite of whatever they are asking for.

Unless they knew you were going to do the opposite of what they ask for, in which case they would ask the opposite of what they want you to do. "So I clearly can not choose the wine in front of me."

Re:Well, that was your mistake. (5, Insightful)

SomePgmr (2021234) | about 2 years ago | (#41635475)

It doesn't say anything about who has to make the contributions. By the sound of things it could be people from his neighborhood. It doesn't have to be Halliburton.

And really, I'd bet it's more of a "If you don't have $50k, you don't actually have a serious campaign" type of requirement, in their opinion. I don't think it's a conspiracy to make sure you have corporate overlords, it's to make sure they don't have 500 whackjobs on stage preaching about all manner of insanity.

Well Boo hoo.. (-1, Troll)

DeTech (2589785) | about 2 years ago | (#41635009)

Please go cry some where else. Requirements are there to be met, and you're not winning over any friends by crying corporate greed every time you don't get your way.

Re:Well Boo hoo.. (2, Insightful)

ae1294 (1547521) | about 2 years ago | (#41635399)

Please go cry some where else. Requirements are there to be met, and you're not winning over any friends by crying corporate greed every time you don't get your way.

Wow way to be a total dick. Someone should kick you squarely in the balls...

Question (4, Insightful)

SomePgmr (2021234) | about 2 years ago | (#41635017)

Too little information here.

What are the criteria for being included in these independent polls? Does one normally request inclusion?

Have you asked ABC about these requirements?

Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (4, Insightful)

realmolo (574068) | about 2 years ago | (#41635019)

I mean, the ABC affiliate doesn't even NEED a reason to exclude you, right? It's their station. You want to be on TV, buy your own affiliate. Right? Isn't that the "free market" at work? Are you saying they should be FORCED to let you into the debate?

Libertarians are nothing but Republicans that are upset they aren't rich/powerful enough to fuck people in the ass. They want it to be easier to get into the "Fuck you, I've got mine" club.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (1)

kwerle (39371) | about 2 years ago | (#41635071)

Dude (or dudette). I have mod points, but I'm split between Insightful, Funny, and Flame bait.

You had me with the first paragraph. There was no need for the second.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635093)

No, ABC is part of a government enforced oligopoly. Stop thinking the US has a free market--it doesn't. It had one a hundred years ago, but the descent into fascism has been swift since that time, and it is getting swifter. And it is all because people like you think we just don't have the "right" government, and fail to realize that the system is set up in such a way that only the corrupt can win.

Also, thanks for judging a bunch of people who you clearly know nothing about. We are tired, and poor, and long to be free. I guess we aren't welcome here any more.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (2, Interesting)

afidel (530433) | about 2 years ago | (#41635409)

So how do tv stations work in your utopian libertarian pipe dream? Does the person with the most money just buy the most powerful transmitter to drown out everyone elses signal?

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (4, Funny)

tekrat (242117) | about 2 years ago | (#41635095)

Don't be silly. According to Romney, you can borrow money from your parents. Or roll down the window on a airplane, I forget which.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635111)

>I mean, the ABC affiliate doesn't even NEED a reason to exclude you, right? It's their station. You want to be on TV, buy your own affiliate. Right?

Yes, although buying your own affiliate sounds really like a really dumb way of doing things. Instead just broadcast.

>Isn't that the "free market" at work?

Yes.

>Are you saying they should be FORCED to let you into the debate?

I hope he isn't. Hopefully, he is instead exercising his right to tell others why ABS sucks ass. A right libertarians would DEFINITELY let you keep. I see nothing on his page that says he wants to use government laws to force them to do anything. Instead he wants to use their market against them. A completely legitimate tactic for a libertarian, and the one that is usually suggested by most libertarians after "Don't buy their service" if they're the only game in town.

>Libertarians are nothing but Republicans that are upset they aren't rich/powerful enough to fuck people in the ass.

Stefan Molyneux. Need I say more about why you're wrong?

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (1)

desdinova 216 (2000908) | about 2 years ago | (#41635411)

I thought he was asking why there are requirements other than being on the ballot for the debate.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 2 years ago | (#41635133)

I mean, the ABC affiliate doesn't even NEED a reason to exclude you, right?

Except that this is about elections. Unless Libertarians don't believe in the democratic process, including the public debate, saying that people and institutions in democratic states should have the right to twist the election process is like saying that Wahhabis should be allowed to do whatever they want because of our freedom of religion and tolerance.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41635401)

Twist the election? They guy has no chance of winning. If he did he could have easily met their requirements for being part of the roundtable debate.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635211)

I thought they were Republicans who want to legalize weed.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (2)

Infernal Device (865066) | about 2 years ago | (#41635319)

I thought they were Republicans who want to legalize weed.

These days the Libertarians sound less crazy than the Republicans, thanks to the Teabaggers.

It hasn't always been that way.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (5, Insightful)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 2 years ago | (#41635309)

You see, you're playing the same game the 2 party system wants you to. You lump everything into "republican" or "democrat" and then, once you've placed a person, idea or proposal into it's basked you pick the most extreme ideas in that party and make a strait line from A to B. He's libertarian, which is the same as republican, which is conservative... Nazis... HE WANTS TO KILL THE JEWS!!!!

Well fuck... you're wrong. Libertarians are not republicans. Libertarians just have some ideas that are more congruent with the republican party than the democratic party. On many issues libertarians are much more liberal than Democrats will ever be. Gay marriage for example... Libertarians don't even think marriage should be something the government has anything to do with. Mary a goat for all they care. That's between you and your religion.

Then you get into this nonsense about the station should have free speech. Sure, they should. But so does this fellow. They can exclude him from the debate, and then he has the right to make a big stink about it and make them look like shills for the 2 major parties, which in fact, they are. It's not like he's suing them. And even if he were to... there's no 100% right way to be a libertarian. He can have his own views, and be as Libertarian as he wants to be. Just because you're libertarian doesn't mean you want to shut down public schools and start selling missile launchers at the local walmart tomorrow. There's plenty of middle ground.

Climb out of our political parties sand trap and start think for yourself for a change.

Re:Isn't this what Libertarians WANT? (1)

gbear711 (1321149) | about 2 years ago | (#41635461)

In an ideal world, yes it should be the stations choice. But the station is fulfilling a licensing obligation to public service isn't it? As such they should only host the event and let a third party do the inviting.

A couple problems (4, Insightful)

MyLongNickName (822545) | about 2 years ago | (#41635023)

There are a couple problems with your story

1. $50,000 is not a high amount and doesn't require corporate donations. I've seen missionaires collect more money from friends and family than that.
2. Why are you posting to Slashdot about this? I may not like ABC's position, but have no control over it.
3. Why did Slashdot accept this? They aren't even close to their mission statement on this

Re:A couple problems (2, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about 2 years ago | (#41635149)

1. You are correct
2. Even more correct.
3. Because we have a cadre of resident ayn rand nutters. They love anything that means they get to feel superior and blaming their problems on others. They hate being responsible for anything, even more so another human being. They like to talk about personal responsibility, but have no real interest in it. They will forgo insurance and rip me and you off by getting free care at the ER. They talk about how being forced to get car insurance is a moral outrage, but would still drive with no way to cover any costs incurred in an accident.

Re:A couple problems (1)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | about 2 years ago | (#41635299)

There are a couple problems with your story

1. $50,000 is not a high amount and doesn't require corporate donations. I've seen missionaires collect more money from friends and family than that.
2. Why are you posting to Slashdot about this? I may not like ABC's position, but have no control over it.
3. Why did Slashdot accept this? They aren't even close to their mission statement on this

1. Why should there be any minimum amount? Isn't setting a financial threshold just affirming we're only interested in politicians that are good at raising capital? Is that what we want?
2. Because we have an opportunity to do something about this ridiculous policy but letting this ABC affiliate know how stupid this policy is. Or not, it's your choice.
3. This falls under "stuff that matters". At least it does to me.

Re:A couple problems (1)

afidel (530433) | about 2 years ago | (#41635451)

My guess is since it's a tv station they set the limit for a "legitimate" candidate (ie one who can afford to buy advertising time on their station).

Re:A couple problems (1)

omegadot (2751565) | about 2 years ago | (#41635365)

This and I'm rather suspicious when someone generalizes "trumped up reasons" then follows that by something that is pretty damn relevant to a TV show. This seems like a bit of a stunt to me... I'm always happy to see more contributions to the public forum and I hope you meet with success or at least make some contribution, but this isn't it.

Re:A couple problems (3, Insightful)

AwesomeMcgee (2437070) | about 2 years ago | (#41635419)

I'm sorry but; 50g's is a lot of money. Missionaries collecting that just from family and friends? I take it you live in Manhattan? I come from a fairly intelligent professional family, but none of my family members *own* a home more less have thousands of dollars burning holes in their pockets. Any extra cash laying around from my family and friends is in their rainy day fund because they need one or being slowly saved to get something a little pleasant, think 50 dollars a month until they can afford a nice big screen tv after a full year. Not the kind of money that would ever amount to 50 grand.

People with means are apparantly clueless about what the average household revenue and costs are just to stay afloat.

Re:A couple problems (1)

larry bagina (561269) | about 2 years ago | (#41635489)

Not only that, the OP has no understanding whatsoever about corporate donations. Corporations are limited to $2500 per candidate, same as a person. PACs and party committees can give $5,000 so being libertarian puts him at a disadvantage there.

Maybe he means Citizens United. Those aren't donations, they're independent expenditures and aren't counted as a donation (and you as an individual aren't limited, either).

Huh (4, Insightful)

kamapuaa (555446) | about 2 years ago | (#41635025)

This is ABC's decision. As a Libertarian surely you wouldn't want to interfere with the choice that a private company made.

With a 0% chance of winning, basically you would be wasting people's time. Similarly, Jill Stein isn't a part of the presidential debate.

Re:Huh (2)

jdastrup (1075795) | about 2 years ago | (#41635129)

I agree with your first statement about not interfering with the private company's choice. But, I disagree about wasting people's time. I would bet that many people, especially conservatives that only vote Republican because that's what they think conservatives are supposed to do, would be surprised and possibly learn that there are other options besides the Republicans. In some ways, that's what the Tea Party was all about, unfortunately it had no real leadership.

Re:Huh (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635169)

All the debates are 100% waste of time.
What's your point?

Re:Huh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635179)

As a Libertarian surely you wouldn't want to interfere with the choice that a private company made.

Libertarians are only against violent interference.

Re:Huh (5, Insightful)

Omnifarious (11933) | about 2 years ago | (#41635187)

This is ABC's decision. As a Libertarian surely you wouldn't want to interfere with the choice that a private company made.

Ahh, yes, that old trotted out stupid fallacy. If you don't want a government to interfere in a decision, that must mean you think every decision made by a corporate entity should be met with a tub full of KY-jelly and a re-enactment of the scene from goatse.

For your information, it is possible to object to a decision, or even something someone said, without asking a government to back up your objection with violence. It's even possible to arrange a boycott, or a protest outside a studio, or any number of other private or popular actions in protest of a decision you don't like, yet none of those require the invocation of coercive force.

Not that I'm really much of a liberatarian in many ways. But this stupidity always really irritates me.

Re:Huh (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635229)

It shouldn't be ABC's decision. In my opinion, debates with more than 50,000 expected viewers "should" have top six requirements. That is, from the last election, the top six parties and/or independents will automatically get ballot access this time around. I said should, as in we should make a bill to make that so. But, that's beside the point. Those top six should also get automatic debate access. HOW ARE THOSE THIRD PARTIES GOING TO GAIN IN THE POLLS IF THEY CAN'T DEBATE WITH THE MORE POPULAR PARTIES?!?!

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I'm low in the polls because no one knows who I am.
No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
I can't get into the debate bcause I'm low in the polls.
I'm low in the polls because no one knows who I am.
No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
I can't get into the debate bcause I'm low in the polls.
I'm low in the polls because no one knows who I am.
No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
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No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
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I'm low in the polls because no one knows who I am.
No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
I can't get into the debate bcause I'm low in the polls.
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I can't get into the debate bcause I'm low in the polls.
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No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
I can't get into the debate bcause I'm low in the polls.
I'm low in the polls because no one knows who I am.
No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
I can't get into the debate bcause I'm low in the polls.
I'm low in the polls because no one knows who I am.
No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
I can't get into the debate bcause I'm low in the polls.
I'm low in the polls because no one knows who I am.
No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
I can't get into the debate bcause I'm low in the polls.
I'm low in the polls because no one knows who I am.
No one knows who I am because I can't get into the debate to get better known.
I can't get into the debate bcause I'm low in the polls.
I'm low in the polls because no one knows who I am.

misleading title (2)

danlip (737336) | about 2 years ago | (#41635027)

You shouldn't need corporate donations to reach the $50,000 mark. You could do it with $5000 people donating $10 each. That's 0.076% of the Massachusetts population. I think it is a fairly reasonable concept that if you can't do that you are not a serious candidate.

Re:misleading title (2)

Talderas (1212466) | about 2 years ago | (#41635079)

Hmmm.... where can I get some $5000 people. I would like to breed them for $5000 babies to sell.

Re:misleading title (1)

Antipater (2053064) | about 2 years ago | (#41635407)

They're don't exist yet. We're only what, three generations removed from the $6,000,000 man? The gene pool needs more time for the value to spread around.

Re:misleading title (1)

AwesomeMcgee (2437070) | about 2 years ago | (#41635471)

Whether or not your post had a point, I like reading it as though it didn't and you were just interjecting a non-sequitor, for which it is a magnificent one.

That sucks! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635031)

Sounds like you're trying to walk the straight and narrow. ABC can go fuck themselves.

Good luck dude!

ABC is a private business? (0)

Bookwyrm (3535) | about 2 years ago | (#41635037)

I rather thought ABC is a private business, so from a Libertarian point of view, I would think they could decide whatever they want as far as who to include on their own debate?

Or, if you are not accepting corporate donations, why are you interested in going on a debate that is essentially sponsored by a corporation -- i.e. ABC -- and their advertisers?

Unless there is something else here, this sounds a bit petulant.

Re:ABC is a private business? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635189)

Yawn, why are strawmen arguments being up modded?

Libertarians would be against the government regulating private decisions. They do not have a problem with citizens pressuring private companies who have made decisions they don't like. And even this is a gross simplification, because libertarians are not against all regulation.

Re:ABC is a private business? (4, Insightful)

ThatsMyNick (2004126) | about 2 years ago | (#41635255)

I rather thought ABC is a private business, so from a Libertarian point of view, I would think they could decide whatever they want as far as who to include on their own debate?

As a libertarian he would not support government intervention (though laws, FCC mandates, etc) in these debates, but as far I can see that is not what he is asking for.

Or, if you are not accepting corporate donations, why are you interested in going on a debate that is essentially sponsored by a corporation -- i.e. ABC -- and their advertisers?

He doesnt hate corporations (atleast thats my opinion of what he believes in). He hates corporate money in politics. There is a difference between the two.

Re:ABC is a private business? (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41635449)

That's great, but there requirement just said $50,000 in donations. It neither said nor implied that he needed to take corporate money. If he can't get $50,000 from people to donate to his campaign or get more than 10% in the polls he has no chance to win.

Re:ABC is a private business? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | about 2 years ago | (#41635359)

I rather thought ABC is a private business, so from a Libertarian point of view, I would think they could decide whatever they want as far as who to include on their own debate?

Or, if you are not accepting corporate donations, why are you interested in going on a debate that is essentially sponsored by a corporation -- i.e. ABC -- and their advertisers?

Unless there is something else here, this sounds a bit petulant.

Creating legislation forcing ABC to permit his participation in the debate would be against Libertarian principals. Applying public pressure to revise their policy is not. I don't think you really understand Libertarian principals at all.

Re:ABC is a private business? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635431)

From a Libertarian point of view, he could set up his own radio transmitter and broadcast. But the airwaves are a government regulated monopoly.

Broadcast yourself? (4, Interesting)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 2 years ago | (#41635055)

Make your own video. Post it on Youtube. Make it viral.

Re:Broadcast yourself? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635123)

ya, edit a video and insert yourself answering the questions, as if you are part of the debate. you'll have to somehow avoid the copyright trolls, but I think it could be fair use...

Two Party System (3, Insightful)

Shagg (99693) | about 2 years ago | (#41635059)

Unfortunately, I'm not surprised. It's a two party system, and the game is rigged to keep it that way.

How many parties were represented in the recent president/vice-president debates?

Re:Two Party System (2)

Anonymous Psychopath (18031) | about 2 years ago | (#41635383)

Unfortunately, I'm not surprised. It's a two party system, and the game is rigged to keep it that way.

How many parties were represented in the recent president/vice-president debates?

And the only time I've ever heard of a third-party candidate being included in a Presidential debate was Ross Perot. And what did he have that got him there? A shitload of money.

Ahh the American way.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635081)

Its simple really, unless you get on the corporate bribe, I mean DONATION, bandwagon you cant get into politics.

Imagine the chaos if corporations didn't rule government?

Meh... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635091)

You have an insignificant or non-existent war-chest, and your polling numbers are virtually nil. It's no surprise that they would reserve their air time for serious candidates; that's why the rules are there, and have been there, almost certainly to your knowledge, for a very long time. You knew that you would be excluded before you even put your name in the hat... but there's no publicity like victimization, amirite?

Great you're not taking corporate donations, but (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635097)

but that does not seem to be the issue. A "serious" candidate with support for US Congress in a populous state should be able to raise a low minimum $50k amount. You are excluded only for that reason, so shame on you for blaming it on something else.

When your solo pity party is over, I wish you luck.

That's so cute... (1)

Ginger_Chris (1068390) | about 2 years ago | (#41635117)

...that you actually thought democracy was about getting the best people with policies that would actually improve the country into the right roles. I'm only 27 and I realised that this whole democracy thing is a massive joke (especially in the UK where both parties are effectively exactly the same and the differences are superficial).

Until the system is changed to promote policies based on long term improvement (which may be unpopular) rather than policies which produce short term boosts to popularity, there's very little point in having you're voice heard. (BTW I do vote, but usually for ideals such as the green party who'd I'd probably not want fully in power but would like to see some of their ideas incorporated into current policy more often)

Hard to radically change the system from within... (1)

macraig (621737) | about 2 years ago | (#41635121)

... when said system is so rigged that an outsider can barely manage to get on a ballot, but then also get equal time and wide enough exposure to actually get elected? Not likely.

Let the revolution begin. Hopefully it's one that would make Ghandi proud, but that may not be possible.

and? (1)

dmitrygr (736758) | about 2 years ago | (#41635125)

And you're surprised because .... ?

Legal? (-1, Flamebait)

puddingebola (2036796) | about 2 years ago | (#41635131)

Will you make it legal for me to smoke crack and fire my 12 gague remmington shotgun through the sun roof of my car while I drive my automoblie free of government regulation?

this doesnt make much sense. (4, Insightful)

nimbius (983462) | about 2 years ago | (#41635147)

you arent being kicked out for refusing corporate donations. you are being refused because you havent even raised 50K and are polling at less than 15%.
 
hate to say it but if I were an ABC affiliate trying to configure the program schedule around the advertising revenue im supposed to be selling, id probably try to keep the forums brief and ensure key folks who pay me for ads get a seat. republicans and democrats will pay me for ad space, but they might not pay me much if i include 40 other no-name candidates willing to bother their candidates with actual debate.

if you're a libertarian bitching about capitalism, you might not be running under the correct ticket.

Bottom line (1)

Lucas123 (935744) | about 2 years ago | (#41635151)

Campaign finance reform should be at the top of every voter's decision list in voting for a candidate. Campaign finance laws currently allow all of the corruption we see above water in politics. If getting rid of corporate donations it's not on a politicians agenda, don't vote for them.

Welcome to free enterprise (1)

sugarbomb (22289) | about 2 years ago | (#41635153)

ABC is a private company that can do what they want, practicing exactly the policy that the Libertarian party promotes. So I guess this candidate is afraid to practice what the party preaches?

Moved a partisan crowd? (4, Informative)

tomhath (637240) | about 2 years ago | (#41635157)

The only thing I see to support your claim that you "moved a very partisan crowd in my favor" is a single sentence:

Fishman, perhaps sensing that many in the room were swayed, told voters to consider him, despite his long odds.

That said I wish you luck, it sounds like the other two candidates are both complete jerks: "Don't vote for him because he's a REPUBLICAN"..."Oh yea? Well don't vote for him because he's a DEMOCRAT". Yup, that's how I evaluate a candidate.

Plus this is completely off topic and doesn't belong on slashdot in the first place.

Bad headline (1, Informative)

Spy Handler (822350) | about 2 years ago | (#41635163)

he wasn't excluded from the debate for refusing corporate donations. He was excluded because he didn't have enough donation period. Which he could've easily remedied by taking personal donations from family, friends and other individual donors. And honestly, 50k is peanuts. If you don't have 50k in donations while running for US congress in this day and age, you are not a serious candidate.

Re:Bad headline (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635225)

Exactly. This is some candidate who has no chance of winning trying to act like he's being oppressed.

Re:Bad headline (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635415)

Yeah, lets get back to letting the serious candidates that only have a chance for exposure due to large donations debate, they are the only ones capable of guiding us and are worthy of our ears.

Check with the fcc, the laws may not allow it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635173)

There is something called a equal time rule...

Re:Check with the fcc, the laws may not allow it (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41635361)

Yeah, but it has no bearing on this. This is a roundtable debate that is part of a show that would easily fall under "bona fide news interview" exemption to that rule.

Fairness Doctorine (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635435)

died in 1987 during the Reagan administration.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fairness_Doctrine [wikipedia.org]

I'm not sure what you're asking here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635199)

You're a Libertarian, right? That means you believe that private corporations like ABC should have the right to do whatever they like. So.. so this is fine with you. So... what's the issue?

Also, why did you refuse corporate campaign donations if you're a Libertarian? It would be un-Libertarian of you to think there's any problem with corporations making unlimited donations, or with candidates accepting them. So if you don't have a moral problem with it... what, were you just too lazy? Did you just not feel like it? Why did you even mention this?

So you see, I'm not sure what you're asking here.

The two party system is so very wrong (2)

Omnifarious (11933) | about 2 years ago | (#41635281)

The media doesn't want to upset the applecart, especially by putting on one of those dirty 'libertarians'. Heck, even in this Slashdot article you have people erecting strawman arguments and then asking why you're upset.

But really, what it is is that the media loves the advertising money from the candidates. It's in their best interests to promulgate the idea that advertising and money wins elections, because that money is spent on them. So they go out of their way to avoid providing free advertising to any candidate who hasn't paid them for enough paid advertising.

And the two party system is a great source of the kind of fake controversy over irrelevant issues that is the bread and butter of mass media. So they don't really want that to go away either. Too much money tied up in keeping things just as they are.

Huh? (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41635283)

You say there requirement is:

*Campaign contributions of at least $50,000

In what way does that say or imply you needed to take corporate donations? You seem to have invented that out of whole cloth. Also there other reasons aren't "trumped up". They can choose who they do or do not want in their debate and it seems perfectly reasonably to only give the limited time to candidates that have even a modicum of a chance of winning.

Idealogical contradiction? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635313)

A Libertarian not accepting corporate donations? Why the hell not?

I'm a Libertarian and believe in the free market (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635317)

I understand that guidelines are put in place so that everybody that registers to run for office can't make a mockery of the system but only registering to disrupt the process negatively. Debates are not the domain of business, they are public events that are sponsored by private and public parties but they are not the domain of business. Frankly I'd be interested to see what the criteria was previous to this. Does anybody know? A shifting of the goal posts would show a definite attempt to suppress the candidate.

Why bother? (0, Troll)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | about 2 years ago | (#41635321)

Unless you're a spoiler in this race, given your polling numbers, you're a no-op. Let the big boys who actually have a chance to win take the time to answer the moderator's questions in a sane (i.e., non-Libertarian) manner. All you'd do is waste time - sort of like a jester at the court.

Re:Why bother? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635477)

Dont you see... the debate is incidental, what he really needs is for us to give him $50k. I belive the technical term is slashvertisement.

Libertarians Personal Rights. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635357)

I thought Libertarians as opposed to Republicans means that property rights do not exceed personal rights. That all rights come out of the sovereignty of the individual. I think all the Libertarian haters are confusing Republicans with Libertarians to discredit Libertarians. Now a Republican would agree that his property rights can exceed your personal rights. Take big corporations banning smoking on the premisses for you own good or charging more for insurance due to a personal choice. That would go against a Libertarians personal rights to force a belief on someone on your property via coercion. A election is not a money making enterprise and all persons on the ballot should be in all debates. Other wise it is a sham as not all the people on the ballot get equal debate time. Cronyism runs so deep through the American psyche mind that most people cannot see the trees through the forest.

Superheros for office (3, Funny)

Time_Ngler (564671) | about 2 years ago | (#41635377)

His 7% of the poll can be explained pretty easily. If I didn't know any of the candidates, and I saw "Fishman", I'd vote for him just on principle.

Libertarian Question (1, Interesting)

AK Marc (707885) | about 2 years ago | (#41635417)

Maybe you are actually reading this and can answer a question about Libertarians.

I keep hearing "whoever initiates force is wrong" and the point of the government is to be a framework to resolve contract disputes, as well as step in after someone initiates force against someone else. Skipping the fact there is a large private industry around dispute resolution the Libertarians fail to address, I'm unclear who initiates force in a very large number of situations. I'll give one here, and hopefully you can explain it in a way that I can understand. Usually I get the answer that goes back to "the person owning the land you are standing on has rights, you have none at all" which conflicts with the "initiate force" rules.

A Black man, Bob, is walking down the street. He sees a cafe named "Joe's Cafe" with a big "open" sign in the window and on the door. Feeling like a bite and feeling invited in, he walks in. The sign on the podium when he walks in says "please seat yourself". He walks to a booth and sits down. Joe, the owner, walks up and informs him that his type is not served there, and he must leave. Bob says "I'm not leaving until I get a meal." Joe calls the police and requests he be arrested for trespass.

The Libertarian explanation is that force is initiated by Bob for not leaving when forced to by Joe. Logic indicates that Joe invited the public (including Bob) in, and throwing him out is the initiation of force. And the Libertarian stance always seems to come down to the owner of the land has rights, and nobody else on that land does. Though, when I word it that way, I get yelled at, but never corrected with anything that doesn't directly lead back to the same conclusion. Though one person did send me a link to a youtube video that explains that you can't have personal freedom without property, and it's the personal freedom that is the basis of property, but no explanation of why it works out that personal freedom on someone else's property is determined, in part, but the owner of that property. That circularly comes back to the freedom coming not from personal freedom, but from the property itself.

I personally think of myself as a libertarian, but I've never met a Libertarian who was a libertarian, though most get offended when I say that.

Corporate Money (2)

thewiz (24994) | about 2 years ago | (#41635429)

Here's an idea:
1. Take the money from the companies
2. Deposit it in a bank
3. Take out money to donate (anonymously) to people and groups that are fighting against the companies that are trying to grease your hand
4. Feel good about yourself and keep on sticking it to the companies

They should pass a law (5, Funny)

myth24601 (893486) | about 2 years ago | (#41635439)

They should pass a law that mandates that anyone who broadcasts a debate must include Libertarians.

annoyed, supportive (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635441)

It's kinda weird that you're posting on Slashdot, which is, like, a technology forum, and your beef is about...politics? And your post reads as a bit whine-y. I'm also somewhat surprised that Slashdot would publish your post. That said, I'm libertarian-leaning and live and vote in Massachusetts. If you were on my ballot, I'd probably vote for you anyway.

That's simply misleading (1)

argStyopa (232550) | about 2 years ago | (#41635459)

Hey, I enjoy 3rd party candidates as much as the next guy, and enjoy seeing them succeed.

However, the REASONABLE standard of requiring $50k in donations to prove you're a credible candidate makes sense.

This is NOT that "they refused me because I refused corporate donations". This is "I'm too small a candidate to be considered serious by their metric".

(I'd say if you polled 7%, you should be included somehow, but honestly, their standard is MORE fair than poll numbers; as you say, you and presumably other minor candidates weren't even included in some of the polling, so the cash-metric is much more universal.)

Misleading summary (1)

davidwr (791652) | about 2 years ago | (#41635467)

He wasn't excluded for refusing corporate donations, he was excluded for not getting $50K in donations.

Now, is that fair? Maybe not. But unless it's a practical impossibility to get $50,000 in non-corporate donations (it's not) then the article title is misleading at best.

A better title would be:

Libertarian Candidate Who Refused Corporate Money Excluded From Debate For Not Raising Enough Donations

Try local NBC, CBS, and FOX affiliates (2)

Culture20 (968837) | about 2 years ago | (#41635483)

I'm sure they'd love to report on this. Also local newspapers and radio.

Contributions Pay the Media (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41635495)

Campaign contributions are spent on television advertising. So, it makes sense that any media company, in this case ABC (Disney), would want to know you are feeding their bank accounts. This is another "green over palms" test (for USA money anyway).

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