There’s too much confusion in the world. If you agree with what I write, then follow my progress during this campaign, and vote for me in November, whether or not I’m listed on the New York State disenfranchisement ballot. The latter makes an independent run like mine a one primate circus affair, giving all advantage to the two established (and corruptible) party machines. My campaign, like much of my thinking, is alternative, perhaps radically naive, yet strongly creative, and that is how it must remain, because I am an artist, not a lawyer.
WRVO, our local public radio station, thinks there is a proper way to be a candidate for Congress in the 21st century. In an e-mail reply to my recent blacklisting protest, it’s representative used the word “legitimate” a couple times to establish reasons why my candidacy has been overlooked. Also, according to his thinking, without a press release, I must not be a serious campaigner. Even if it is news. Must follow protocol! We all know that the Oswego shooting victim was quick to send out her press release—that’s why WRVO reported on it, duh!
Here is how to become a legitimate candidate for Congress according to that quaint federal document which sets all present (in)stability in the United States:
No person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to the age of twenty five years, and been seven years a citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an inhabitant of that state in which he shall be chosen.
The FCC, the organization which licenses public radio, lays out its idea of a “legitimate” candidate too in its Statutes and Rules on Candidate Appearances and Advertising:
The term “substantial showing” of a bona fide candidacy as used in paragraphs (b), (d) and (e) of this section means evidence that the person claiming to be a candidate has engaged to a substantial degree in activities commonly associated (italics mine) with political campaigning. Such activities normally would include making campaign speeches, distributing campaign literature, issuing press releases, maintaining a campaign committee, and establishing campaign headquarters (even though the headquarters in some instances might be the residence of the candidate or his or her campaign manager). Not all of the listed activities are necessarily required in each case to demonstrate a substantial showing, and there may be activities not listed herein which would contribute to such a showing. (Italics mine again)
Well, on January 11th of this year I had a “coming out” art exhibition for Congress at the public library in Oswego, N.Y. You can read about that censorship here. I sent a link to several local news organizations about the public disservice I received by the head librarian, yet no further inquiries were made. I made several campaign speeches that evening, and although I do not have the backing of a political machine to fill a room with people and press, I have spoken freely about my campaign and national issues with many whom I have met. I also post regularly on my commercial blog, open to all and sundry, veritable press releases which I often Tweet to WRVO (59 after this post), and like organizations. Perhaps if our President never set precedent to the legitimacy of Twitter as a primary news source, then local news could ignore it. Unfortunately, that has not been the case, so I use Twitter to connect to potential constituents, mainly because it’s cheap and I am financially compromised. Saves on gas and paid for press releases from my manager at my campaign headquarters, who and which, by the way, are both me and my home.
I believe that I have had a “substantial showing” as outlined in the FCC rules of what makes a “legitimate” run for Congress, as stated above:
“Not all of the listed activities are necessarily required in each case to demonstrate a substantial showing.”
I don’t think either Dana Balter or John Katko exhibited 25 paintings and a memorial, the majority of which signified a specific issue of voter concern. Nor did either go into detail to the public about each issue with an essay, acrylic color, reasonable éclat, and free cookies.
Sure, they got their money to write up press releases. Oodles of them. John Katko has over a million dollars raised already. Impressive! However, I don’t see that as an FCC requirement to viability.
On the other hand, I have made every effort on my own dime, and I’m not even a hundredaire. Wow, imagine that WRVO! A candidate for Congress not allowing any donation to his campaign.
Sounds like a news story to me.
Let’s see if it has legs.
To end then, with a relevant quote that just never seems to work well on us pesky arteest types:
After having thus successively taken each member of the community in its powerful grasp and fashioned him at will, the supreme power then extends its arm over the whole community. It covers the surface of society with a network of small complicated rules, minute and uniform, through which the most original minds and the most energetic characters cannot penetrate, to rise above the crowd. The will of man is not shattered, but softened, bent, and guided; men are seldom forced by it to act, but they are constantly restrained from acting. Such a power does not destroy, but it prevents existence; it does not tyrannize, but it compresses, enervates, extinguishes, and stupefies a people, till each nation is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid and industrious animals, of which the government is the shepherd.