The Garance Numbers

Garance Franke-Ruta has done some number-crunching on the Democrats’ second quarter fundraising, and it’s looking good for Barack:

Let’s do some back-of-the-envelope math here, shall we? Last quarter, Obama brought in $25.7 million from 104,000 donors. This time around, he is shooting for 250,000 donors (his campaign currently reports 245,272). Even assuming that all Obama’s second-quarter growth was from low-dollar donors (an assumption that’s almost certainly incorrect), I don’t see how this adds up to less than $37 million. The average online political donation tends to be around $80 per person. Multiply that by 150,000 and you get $12 million, which can be added to a presumed mix of high and low-dollar donations from the other 100,000 equalling $25 million, as was the case for Obama last quarter. Even if the number of high-dollar donors among the first 100,000 was lower this time, reducing his per-donor average among the first 100,000 from close to $250 to, say, $200, his minimum total for the 250,000 would be $32 million. And a per-donor average of just $160 for all 250,000 donors would still add up to $37.5 million. His per-donor average would have to fall to $140 or below for him to raise less than $35 million; last quarter his per donor average was nearly $250.

As Garance notes, the Clinton people have already stated that they’ve raised about $27 million, so unless they’re purposefully low-balling it seems like Obama has out-raised Hillary by $10 million. Considering what institutional and fund-raising juggernauts the Clintons are, that’s mighty impressive.

6 thoughts on “The Garance Numbers

  1. Honestly I think that a lot of this music takes itself too seriously. Most of the popular music that I like has an element of humor. There are a few exceptions, I suppose.
    E.g., “Smoke Two Joints” by the Toyes is funny every time, even though I have zero personal interest in marijuana. (The version by Sublime is not as good.)
    Okay, that’s an extreme example. But there are also more mainline examples (among music that I like), from “Short Skirt, Long Jacket” to “Industrial Disease”. Not taking this art form too seriously is key. You can’t mix pop music with Sophocles. (Unless you are Tom Lehrer, and that’s not really a counterexample.)

  2. Do you want me to repost them there? Anyway, response:
    I don’t know. I think that pop music has been innovative enough to be taken seriously. See Tago Mago by Can, Trans-Europe Express by Kraftwerk, Another Green World by Brian Eno, Nevermind the Bollocks by the Sex Pistols, the entire oeuvre of the Velvet Underground – those are real leaps forward, and even more derivative music, like Interpol’s (which borrows heavily from the Chameleons and Joy Division, both excellent bands) is good enough to be taken seriously.
    This isn’t to say that I don’t enjoy humorous music. One of my favorite Velvets songs is “I Can’t Stand It” from VU, which references “a purple dog that wears spats”, a surefire sign it’s not as serious as, say, “Heroin”. And even those frequent objects of derision, the Beatles, got into it sometimes. Listen to the lyrics of “Come Together” (which, interestingly, was originally written by John Lennon as Tim Leary’s gubernatorial campaign theme song; Leary was arrested before he could lose to Reagan). “He wear no shoeshine / He’s got toe jam football / He’s got monkey finger”?

  3. It’s your blog, so I have no strong preference, but it might seem logical to move the comments there.
    There is no question that the Beatles had (at times) a good sense of humor. In fact, that is why an EMI producer named George Martin plucked them out of the ranks of nobodies so that they had a chance of becoming famous. In his account, their musical ability was not the main priority, at least not at first.
    I agree that “Come Together” is sort-of funny; on the other hand, it is narcissistic and not all that musical. Actually light-heartedness is not quite the same as humor. For example “Penny Lane” and “Paperback Writer” have more of the right touch, for the purpose of being enjoyable silly music, than “Come Together”.
    Sadly John Lennon was eventually so consumed by celebrity narcissism that he became humorless. This transformation all but destroyed him as an artist, and as a human being. (But his assassination was a bizarre, unrelated accident.)

  4. Eh, I’m too lazy; let’s keep it here 🙂
    Wow, you’re really still pushing the “George Martin was the only reason the Beatles were the most important band in popular music history” theory? On the one hand, it does explain why America, Kenny Rogers, and Gary Glitter – three of Martin’s other clients – are such brilliant artists. On the other hand, it’s totally wrong, and you’re going to have a tough time convincing me otherwise. Martin was an interpreter. Giving him all the credit is like giving Constance Garnett all the credit for Doestoevsky’s brilliance.
    I agree that “Come Together” is sort-of funny; on the other hand, it is narcissistic and not all that musical.
    Are you serious? “Not all that muscial”? Have you listened to that bassline? That there’s a fantastic song.
    For example “Penny Lane” and “Paperback Writer” have more of the right touch, for the purpose of being enjoyable silly music, than “Come Together”.
    For one thing, “Paperback Writer” is actually one of the few bad songs the Beatles has written. It’s just not up to snuff with the rest of their material. And “Penny Lane” is great, but I prefer the economy of “Come Together” and the rest of Abbey Road. Then again, Abbey Road is the best musical work of the 20th century, so that isn’t saying a whole lot.
    Sadly John Lennon was eventually so consumed by celebrity narcissism that he became humorless. This transformation all but destroyed him as an artist, and as a human being. (But his assassination was a bizarre, unrelated accident.)
    I agree that Lennon retreated into solipsism, but listen to Plastic Ono Band. That’s one powerful album.

  5. Giving him all the credit is like giving Constance Garnett all the credit for Doestoevsky’s brilliance.
    Well, no, George Martin doesn’t deserve all of the credit, for a variety of reasons. The Beatles themselves definitely deserve some credit, even though other people could equally well have been the Beatles. By the same token, Martin had the benefit of industry access, just as the Beatles did; other people could have been George Martin.
    Certainly your analogy to Garnett and Doestoevsky doesn’t work. Doestoevsky was already famous in Russia without Constance Garnett. Whereas before they had an EMI contract, the Beatles sounded a lot like a hundred other British skiff bands.
    Maybe you’re going to tell me that Don Kirshner was just an interpreter for the Monkees? Or that Wernher von Braun was just a technical assistant of Neil Armstrong?
    Another example that’s food for thought was Anne Sullivan, interpreter for Helen Keller; and rather more than her interpreter.
    Have you listened to that bassline [of Come Together]?
    I have listened to it many, many times. Maybe that’s the problem. 🙂 But you are completely entitled to like this song, even if I’m tired of it.
    For one thing, “Paperback Writer” is actually one of the few bad songs the Beatles has written. It’s just not up to snuff with the rest of their material.
    Which is why it rocketed to #1 in about 10 countries? I don’t think that it’s so terrible; and it was certainly very good at what it was intended to be.

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