the Net: US Elections
FRANCISCO, 30 September 2000- "Bringing Capitalism and
Democracy Closer Together", reads the tagline on voteauction.com,
where the two meet in a grisly head-on collision that subverts both
thorougly. James Baumgartner, an American graduate student in art at
Rensselaer Polytechnic, builds the voteauction.com site as a sardonic
swipe at these two legs of the American ideological stool, then sells it
to Austrian businessman Hans Bernhard, who moves it to Bulgaria and
means to run it for a profit (and it's irony, more than modern
democracy, that collapses as those two legs give way).
or individuals can bid on individual votes or blocks of votes up for
sale The site lacks the polish of a properly slick campaign web site,
and the business model is shaky - legal niceties aside, how can a
campaign or supporter be sure that a vote, once purchased, is delivered?
- but for a quick trip into the hyper-real of the early 21st century,
it's worth a quick look, and possibly more of an attention-getter than
all the hypocritical wind from both quarters over campaign finance
reform this year.
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