Following the Money

Photograph by Peter Hapak for TIME

Money in politics is not inherently bad--or good. It's all in how it's used. If the billions of dollars that will be raised this year were spent on public-service announcements explaining the limited powers of the three branches of government, you'd probably say that was a good thing. But of course we know that's not the case. The lion's share of money in the 2012 presidential campaign will be spent on negative ads, which are effective though not edifying. And the fact that a new legal landscape has given the green light to more undisclosed money than ever before is not...

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