FINANCE REFORM #3
by Wendy Vapors, 2/4/00
DC: The hob-nobbing and fund raising have been going
on for many months, and vast war chests have been built up, but this
week the candidates for the presidential nomination in the Enough! Party
finally arrived at the point where their futures were being determined
by actual, live, not-very-wealthy Americans. And the policy of Extreme
Disclosure adopted by former Governor Dick Burstyn and Senator Sam Spleen
has made the process even more interesting. Wendy Vapors reports.
(sfx: small rally crowd)
Wendy: Tuesday night, when the results began to trickle in, Senator
Sam Spleen and his supporters were elated.
Spleen: (pa system) I am thrilled with the way things are going. We're
(sfx: crowd cheer)
Lunar Burgers' stock price is up ... it's sales are up ... the numbers
are all positive and encouraging ... it's a company on the move and
the man wearing their hat ... is a candidate on the move!
(sfx: crowd cheer)
(sfx: crummy band)
Wendy: Senator Spleen has been wearing the Lunar Burgers Logo and images
of their mascot, Larry Lunar, for weeks now, ever since he proposed
in a debate with Governor Dick Burstyn that the two of them engage in
Extreme Disclosure by displaying, on their clothing, the insignias of
the sources of their financial support.
Spleen also wears the logos of the Handsoap Manfacturer's Association,
Dizco, FossilOil, Ethical Cereals (makers of Oathies), Friendly Cola
and the Internet giant Dogoodco.com.
All did well on Tuesday night.
Political analyst Ted Sheffield.
Ted: The message is pretty clear, the people love Senator Spleen's brands
and associations. Friendly Cola is selling like gangbusters in all the
primary states. Dizco and Fossiloil are reporting huge profits, the
Handsoap Industry (which united behind Spleen over a year ago) is in
the midst of a renaissance, and even Dogoodco.com has not lost as much
money lately, since Sam Spleen had their Internet address tattooed on
Wendy: It's not a real tattoo ... is it?
Ted: He's a politician. What do you think?
Wendy: The news on Tuesday was not very good for Governor Burstyn. He
declined to appear at his own campaign rally that night, but was available
to reporters the next day.
Burstyn: (phone) Obviously we have some work to do. Our brands are struggling.
Sprawling Medical, one of my major funders, had a bad week. But luck
was part of it. Getting sued by the Justice Department AND having a
record number of patients die because of foolish human error was ...
an unfortunate coincidence.
Wendy: What about Intimida's sales figures being off so sharply?
Burstyn: The automotive business is a tough business. There are ups
and downs. And cycles. Things happening over and over.
Wendy: Are you talking about that expose' in Scumbusters Magazine where
they went on and on about Intimidas and their tendency to roll over?
Burstyn: My friends at Intimida say that sometimes rolling the car over
is a legitimate evasive move. And it doesn't have to be too fatal if
you're wearing your seatbelt.
Wendy: Have any of the companies that fund your campaign asked that
you STOP wearing their logos?
Burstyn: (uncomfortable) I do change them around for variety's sake.
But that's the only reason I might not wear one on a particular day.
Wendy: In fact, rumors have surfaced that some of Burstyn's major donors
have requested that he hide their financial relationship because they're
afraid his unpopularity is dragging down their stock prices, profits
and market shares.
Analyst Ted Sheffield.
Ted: Early on we thought Governor Burstyn had made the error of allying
himself with industries and brands that are not well loved. And they've
had their problems, but since he came on board things have become a
Wendy: But that's not how he sees it.
Ted: No ... he's got his own spin on it.
Burstyn: First of all, it's not the companies, really. Companies can't
directly finance political candidates. It's groups of their executives
who are contributing to my campaign. And not just the executives alone.
In many cases, their spouses and each and every one of their children
are giving me the most money a person can give, so I appreciate that
kind of enthusiastic support. I wear the name of ... Industrial Sludge
Producers Incorporated, for example ... as a way of saying "thank
you" to these loyal supporters. They don't pay me to do it. So
some days I might wear their insignia, and other days ... not.
Wendy: Are you gonna stop accepting their money?
Burstyn: A lot of them are in unpopular industries and groups that the
public is not sympathetic towards.
Wendy: Like the Drunken Boating Lobby?
Burstyn: The Boating and Beverage Association is a good example. Other
candidates (I'm not naming any names), refused to accept their support.
I thought that was unfair. It's a fundamental right for an American
group to be able to funnel large amounts of money to a political candidate
of their choice. I'm willing to take some heat so groups like the BABA
and Sprawling Medical and Gullible Reader's Clearinghouse can be involved
in the political process.
Wendy: Latest polling figures show Governor Burstyn is rapidly becoming
the most hated man in America. Political analysts say this is a case
of poor timing, as most successful candidates for president put off
becoming hated until AFTER they are elected. Politics is a game of give
and take, ebb and flow, and so forth and so on. Right now, Burstyn is
waning, while Spleen appears to be waxing, which is what he told his
supporters Tuesday night.
Spleen: We're gonna keep on disclosing where the money comes from ...
we're gonna wear our brands proudly ... our companies are gonna prosper
... and that will make it possible for them to funnel more money into
So remember ... Shop Spleen! Shop Spleen!
(sfx: crowd chant ... Shop Spleen, Shop Spleen, etc)
(over chanting) Yeah ... and you might as well vote too, while you're
Wendy: Presidential candidate Senator Sam Spleen of the Enough! Party,
who appears to be using his policy of Extreme Disclosure to ride the
crest of a wave of new credibility and fresh momentum ... perhaps to
victory in November.
I'm Wendy Vapors and I'm reporting.
Dale Connelly Reporting Home