News today that big money Republican “donors” squandered most of their money is another sign of the weakening of hierarchies in a world that is increasingly horizontal. The GOP apparently can’t see this, which is one of the most telling lessons from election day 2012. Mike Flynn at Breitbart writes Rarely has so much been spent to so little effect:
Outside SuperPACs lost virtually every race they targeted, despite outspending the Democrats by wide margins in some cases. This election was an epic failure of DC’s consultant class.
“DC’s consultant class” is a product of our hierarchies. The election was an epic failure all right, an epic failure of the idea that you can influence culture from the top down, if only you have enough money.
Money can’t buy happiness, nor can it buy an election, apparently.
The top donors to super PACs in 2012 did not fare well — casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, the No. 1 super PAC contributor with more than $53 million in giving, backed eight losers at this writing.
Adelson was top backer of the pro-Mitt Romney Restore Our Future super PAC, with $20 million in donations. Romney lost to President Barack Obama. In addition, Adelson’s contributions to super PACs backing U.S. Senate candidates in Florida, Virginia and New Jersey were also for naught.
He was not the only conservative billionaire who had a bad night.
The shift to the horizontal in the West is something that will impact everyone sooner or later. Media companies count on the premise of buying influence; it’s the core of its value proposition, the purpose of the stage. Those who believe this will always be the way are blind to the disruptive nature of the horizontal, which, at least in part, explains events like Karl Rove’s on air, election night insistence that the numbers had to be wrong.
Or Mitt Romney being “shellshocked” by his loss.
Top-down isn’t going away completely, but it’s also not going to ever again be the reliable friend of the haves — especially not of those who have a lot.
It’s not surprising that President Obama used Twitter to notify his followers of his victory.