Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Stark Reminder of How the Bush-Cheney Legacy Will Haunt Us For Decades

To say I was freaked out by Thursday’s Supreme Court decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission would be a gross understatement. I have literally lost sleep over it. Even President Obama said that he could not "think of anything more devastating to the public interest." Essentially the victors argued that corporations should be treated the same as "natural persons" thereby granting them first amendment rights. The conservative leaning Court, led by neo-con GWB appointee Chief Justice John Roberts joined together to invalidate a longtime ban on corporate money in federal elections by a margin of 5-4. I don’t see how this was a first amendment battle. Nobody has ever stopped corporations from voicing their opinions. This was about financially tilting the playing field to political hopefuls that are willing to do the corporations bidding. This court has made what is quite possibly the most radical “activist” decision ever by the Court. They ripped away 107 years of laws and previously upheld challenges. There is now no limit on how much any corporation can spend to support, or worse, to destroy a political opponent. I’m really truly afraid that this will eventually lead to one party rule and fascism. Think about this in the broadest sense of all; not just Democrats vs. Republicans although we know which party always puts big business ahead of the citizens. How many of these corporations here are wholly U.S. owned? How much foreign money will be coming in to influence our elections? Apparently Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg questioned opening the door to "mega-corporations" owned by foreign governments. Olson stated that Congress might be able to prohibit foreign corporations from making donations, but he thought any such restriction a bad idea! Now this is something the teabaggers should be upset about if they want their government to work for the people. Guess what? The night-time stars at Fox have not even mentioned it even though you know they're excited about the prospect of conservative fascism. Clearly they're not sure how their little teabagging flock will respond since the teabaggers "want their country back." Theoretically, this should unite progressives and teabaggers with a common interest towards untold corporate influence and abject greed. However, it won't because the teabag movements are just fake "grassroots" efforts led by far right organizers Dick Armey and David Koch. They aren't smart enough to realize the Democrats and the black guy aren't their biggest problem. Want a little bit of in your face irony? I recently lauded attorney Ted Olson for partnering with David Boies to challenge the Proposition 8 decision in California. He was the man who successfully argued the case for Citizens United. Talk about a slap in the face. Tara Malloy, attorney with the Campaign Legal Center of Washington D.C. says corporations will now have more rights than people. Only United States citizens may donate or influence campaigns, but a foreign government can, veiled behind a corporate treasury, dump money into ballot battles. Malloy also noted that under the law today, human-people, as opposed to corporate-people, may only give $2,300 to a presidential campaign. But hedge fund billionaires, for example, who typically operate through dozens of corporate vessels, may now give unlimited sums through each of these "unnatural" creatures. I would like to give a thumbs up to the four sane and just Justices: Justice John Paul Stevens, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Justice Stephen G. Breyer and Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Next I'll name the dark side of the Court, who appointed them and their age: John G. Roberts (GWB age 55), Samuel A. Alito, Jr. (GWB age 59), Clarence Thomas (GHWB age 61), Anthony Kennedy (Reagan age 73) and Antonin Scalia (Reagan age 73). Given that these are lifetime appointments, we're screwed.

I’m not generally a huge Ralph Nader fan, but I’d like to share his OpEd with anyone who hasn’t seen it. He obviously knows more than me and did give me a glimmer of hope that we might be able to at least contain this disaster. I’ll provide the first paragraph with a link to continue…
Yesterday's 5-4 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission shreds the fabric of our already weakened democracy by allowing corporations to more completely dominate our corrupted electoral process. It is outrageous that corporations already attempt to influence or bribe our political candidates through their political action committees (PACs), which solicit employees and shareholders for donations.
Read the entire article here: The Supreme Court decision further weakens our democracy

President Blasts Supreme Court Over Citizens United Decision with Weekly Radio Address

No comments:

Post a Comment