Remember Sam Bulte, the Canadian Liberal Member of Parliament who lost her seat after her voters figured out that she was raising money from the entertainment industry and then delivering pro-entertainment-industry laws that creamed the public to line the pockets of her buddies?
Well, Elections Canada has just published her campaign finance details, and it's pretty grim. As JA says, "Her individual contributors file is a short list of entertainment industry lawyers. Her corporations list includes the usual suspects – the music multinationals, HMV, and royalties collector SOCAN."
More disturbing is the contributors she didn't disclose. Canadian law requires her to disclose all donations over $200, but her files (delivered late by the Bulte campaign, which claimed that the computer ate its homework) don't fully account for the attendees to her notorious $250 entertainment-industry love-in at Toronto's Drake Hotel, which was chock-a-block with industry donors hoping to buy some special consideration from their favorite minister.
Luckily, Michael Geist has sleuthed out what he can about it, doing some back-of-the-envelope math that calculates that about half of Bulte's campaign finance came from that fundraiser, which was long on entertainment industry ticks who suck the blood out of artists, but short on artists themselves.
Fifty-one tickets were sold, six of which were purchased by Stan Tyminski, a longtime Bulte supporter. Of the remaining 45 tickets, purchasers included:
* the hosts (CMPDA, Entertainment Software Association, Jacqueline Husion (listed twice)
* the lobbyists and marketers (David Dyer of Capitol Hill Group, Sussex Strategy Group, Partners and Edell, Wellington Strategy Group)
* the collectives (Canadian Music Publishers (listed twice)
* the lawyers (McCarthys, Cassels Brock, Goodman & Carr, Heenan Blaikie)
* the record industry (Warner Music (four tickets), Sony BMG (three tickets), Universal Music (two tickets), True North Records, Maplecore, HMV)
* publishing interests (Kim McArthur, Christopher Moore)
This kind of shenanigans cost Bulte her seat, but her successor, the Tory Minister Bev Oda, was also on the take, netting big bucks from the Canadian Association of Broadcasters, Canadian Motion Picture Distributors, Canadian Music Publishers' Association, Entertainment Software Association, Universal Music and other anti-Internet groups who are about to get their reward when Oda tries to steamroller Canada's version of the DMCA through Parliament.