Citizens United

Who says the Right doesn’t dabble in a little Judicial Activism once in a while?

Citizens United vs. the FEC was a little, very narrow case about the right to broadcast a political documentary about Hillary Clinton on PPV right before a major set of primaries. While granted the Government’s argument against Citizens United was horrible, somehow the airing of that little documentary got turned into “If we do not allow the Corporations to be treated like people and have no independent spending limits on campaigns the government will clamp down on political bloggers and take away their Freedom of Speech!”

Having read the opinion (thank you SCOTUS Blog) I am left with a deep sense of buh. The judicial overreach is breathtaking. The logic eludes me. The Supreme Court did not overturn McCain-Feingold, but the Tillman Act of 1907 and opened the floodgates to flat out shameless purchasing of politicians by Corporations. For a SCOTUS that claims to be Constitutional Constructionists who Dislike Judicial Overreach, overturning a full century of precident gives way to the Big Lie. They are Constitutional Constructionists when it comes to poor people but highly Activist when it comes to rich people. The Roberts Court has never met a Corporation it didn’t want to vigorously hump.

Why bother with lobbyists when the Corporations can simply outright purchase a few politicians shamelessly? If Goldman Sachs, looking at its enormous profits for the year, decides they want to own the NY Attorney General, what stops them from writing a check for a couple of hundred million, using it to “inform” the voters what they want in a slick marketing campaign, taking the tax writeoff for the Capital Expediture, and then getting the NY Attorney General Brought To You By Goldman Sachs? In a way it’s cheaper than the current system of lobbyists and bribes but in the Great Recession do we want to put our Good Lobbyists out of work? Think of the unemployment numbers!

This is being spun as “good for the Middle Class” but I don’t see it unless it is the Elite Rich People Who Can Now Inform The Poor Dumb People of the United States What Is Good For Them. Perhaps the Smart Elite People can inform me who is a Dumb Engineer in the Upper Middle Class why this is Good for Me and I will say, “Thank you here is my credit card can I have another?” I don’t see how this is good for anyone except a handful of CEOs. The clock is being turned back to around 1870.

“And you know,” I say as I scratch a spot behind my ear, “this all comes at a time when the People love and adore Big Corporations like GM and AIG and General Electric and the Banks… as our Saviors and Masters…”

Obama promised a “forceful response” but he knows he has nothing — except maybe sign interesting and creative disclosure laws, which, sadly, will never happen because the Democrats in Congress are whiny, spineless, ball-less wimps who have their own Corporate Sponsors. If I was in Congress I would be writing the legistlation for Endorsement Laws. Sports stars do endorsements and disclose their sponsors. So should politicians. They should look like NASCAR:

“Mitch McConnell — brought to you by the fine people at ExxonMobil.”

Every time a politician on screen or in print they must disclose their corporate master. Corporate money paid for them. Corporations owned them. They should disclose their employer because it sure isn’t the People of the United States of America. Tell us the true owner!

But it won’t happen because the Democrats have nothing between the legs.

Anyway, in the wake of Citizens United, I have decided to form an LLC to purchase local politicians. Since I can now dump unlimited independent money into an election and say anything I want under the moniker of Free Speech I have decided to buy the Howard County Comptroller and claim the Republican in the race eats babies. Who is with me? Everyone is getting a politician this year — it is the Must Have Purchase of 2010!

  • If you believe this decision overturned the Tillman act, then you can simply form the LLC and donate directly. But you obviously know that it didn’t; your last paragraph proves it.

    This decision struck down a portion of a law written in 2002 and reversed a decision handed down in 1990. If we’re going to have a public debate on its merits, let’s at least be accurate in describing what it did.