The Washington Post is calling it an "invisible primary" - the lead-up to the 2008 presidential race in which the competitive candidates will be chosen on the basis of how much early money they can bring in from a small, elite circle of wealthy power players. You can't write a check for $2,000 and promise 100 friends who can do the same? Then your opinion means nothing.
Sure, voters get a say...sort of. They can vote in the primary, and they can vote in the general election - but beyond that, does the general public get a say in who actually runs? Without a huge money machine behind them a candidate won't get taken seriously. The article acknowledges that this process - perfected by President Bush - "there are no voters, elections or overt campaigning -- just the wooing of fabulously rich people with the rewards of insider status, complete with fancy titles."
So two years out, a wealthy group of individuals is sitting down to steak dinners to decide the course of the election - no worries, I'm sure they have only our best interests at heart.