Sunday, April 15, 2007

Fascinating But Creepy

The title of this post could be the motto for the web in general, but this one is especially so:

So, anybody who has even given money to a campaign knows that you have to provide your name, address, and employer when you do. Makes sense. Keeps Kim Jong-Il or al-Qaeda from donating to campaigns ("Thanks for the new Iraqi training camp! Kisses, ObL."). But since that's now computerized and since political reporters are on the horserace aspects of this election like fake tan on LA flesh, the New York Times has already set up a searchable database for donations (mostly over $200). You can search by candidate, by zip code, even by donor name.

So I already know to whom some of my former professors and employers gave and how much they gave. Illustrative tidbits: Steven Spielberg ("self-employed, Universal City, CA") has given Clinton, Obama, and Edwards the maximum $2,300 each). And some guy named John Edwards in California has given $2,300 to Mit Romney.

There's now a push-button method to find out how your friends, family, neighbors, and enemies donate. This could get ugly.

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