Lately, I’ve been using the platform of Irregular Times to share information with you about the Mayday Super PAC, which asks Americans to give it big money to spend in elections in order to get big money out of politics. A reader has written in response, characterizing such sharing of information as “demonization.” I should hope it’s clear on its face to most people that sharing critical information is different from simple demonization; if you don’t think there’s a distinction, let me know and I’ll spell out my position. On top of that, some information I’ve shared actually casts the Mayday PAC in a positive light. For instance, a hallmark of the puppet organizations controlled by the shadowy Americans Elect/No Labels/Pete Peterson political octopus is a glaring overlap in contributors. But an analysis of contributions to the Mayday PAC indicates that its financial supporters appear mostly to hail from outside that insular, self-referential sphere.
Some other relatively positive traits of the Mayday PAC stand out in comparison to the organization its leaders were previously involved in, Americans Elect.
1. We know who’s giving Mayday PAC money, while some two years after Americans Elect shut down, we still don’t know exactly who was funding its privatized presidential election system. This is a big, important difference.
2. While Americans Elect sent out press releases promising that “the people” would choose its private U.S. presidential nominee, in reality it set up multiple processes and procedures so that the Americans Elect corporate board could overrule whatever decisions rank-and-file members made. In contrast, the Mayday PAC as been very clear about the delineation of privileges between its own corporate board and the American public. The place of the American public in the Mayday PAC system is to send money and maybe send a message with some suggestions; all decisions about what to actually do with the money are clearly under the control of the Mayday PAC leadership board. You may not like that, but at least the Mayday PAC isn’t trying to fake a democratic process. I admire the Mayday PAC’s honesty in that regard.
3. Americans Elect leaders repeatedly refused to communicate with people asking critical, probing questions. In contrast, Mayday PAC’s head honcho Lawrence Lessig and some staffers have been quite willing to communicate with me and with others regarding disputes and criticisms. I may not like all the answers, but any answer is worse than Americans Elect’s stone wall of silence.
I have a number of significant concerns regarding the Mayday PAC. I also admire some of the ways that the Mayday PAC has chosen to be more open than Americans Elect. There’s space enough for both kinds of judgment in our heads.