Victory Speech

The import of the Supreme Court’s drastic over-reach in the Citizens United case is coming painfully clear. Tens of millions of dollars in anonymous campaign contributions are pouring in to groups free to spend on this election with absolutely no accountability for where the money came from. Groups with innocuous names like The American Future Fund are bankrolling attack ads, mostly against Democrats. Who is behind the AFF? according to todays’ New York Times, the group was started with seed money from one Bruce Rastetter, chief exec of one of the country’s largest ethanol companies. The fund’s targets? Primarily politicians on legislative committees with interests in ethanol subsidies. There is no way of knowing how much Rastetter and his colleagues in the industry have contributed, since AFF doesn’t have to report its funding sources. And AFF is just one of dozens of groups active in this year’s election.

Before someone jumps in and names George Soros and unions on the Democratic side, let me point out two things. One, I’m talking about the anonymity of contributions; I don’t care who is putting up the money; the lack of transparency is an outrage. Second, by all accounts, the largest portion of the money being spent this year is from conservative groups with, we assume, ties to corporate entities with vested interests in the outcome. As of the first of this month, the amount spend on Republican candidates totaled $74.6 million, compared to $39.7 for Democrats–almost twice as much. The activist Roberts Court certainly anticipated this outcome when it brazenly decided that corporations possess the same free speech rights as people. The Court knew that the Republican party would be the big winner, and the money is flowing like oil from the Deep Water Horizon spill–with no relief well in sight. It’s not just the money inequality that should disturb us, although that alone should trouble us all; it’s that so much of it is secret. Congress attempted to address this issue with the Disclose Act, but it was filibustered to death by–you guessed it–Republicans. How can we possibly know what we are really voting for when we don’t know who is bankrolling candidates? This is, in my humble opinion, nothing short of a disaster for free and fair democratic elections in this country.

7 thoughts on “Victory Speech”

  1. A corporation is considered the same as an individual under the law of the land.
    I think that both parties get greased by who ever needs a favor so why not have them spend some money to elect one of thier lackies.
    What you are saying is that YOU are afraid that the American people are such children that they can be bought and paid for in an election. What happened in the last Presidental election I think that the Demo’s had a lot more money then the Repub’s did to spend. That’s Life. It all will average out.
    The old saying “You can fool some of the people some of the time but you can’t fool all the people all the time” still rings true and keeps this country great.

    1. What law of the land, exactly, is that? None exists to my knowledge that specifically grants corporations, unions, and other chartered entities human rights. The Court simply granted them by edict. As for what I’m saying, I think I’m pretty clear. I trust the American people to make good choices only when we have the information available to do so. Let me take you back a few years. Most Americans supported invading Iraq, given the belief that Saddam possessed WMDs and was a threat to this country’s interests. That proved to be a lie promulgated by the government to justify an invasion. In other words, we didn’t have the information we needed to make an informed decision, and we made the wrong one. How can anyone presume that we can make correct electoral choices when we don’t know who is behind campaigns? There’s a reason people want their donations kept secret, and it isn’t because they’re shy.

  2. We elect people to make these choices for us we do not vote on going to war, Thank God. Some times we get it right WWII and sometimes we get it wrong Vietnam, again looking back is always easy to ask why. Our leaders have lied to the American people many times over our history and we have the choice to vote them out or impeach to force them out like Nixon. The mess we are in now costs less in lives , more in money which feeds the military industral complex, The last industry we have in America it apears. So maybe we as a people need to care more about who we elect and what they are doing rather than what party they belong to , we need to have people that have character not ego and greed as thier motivation to be in office. Tough to find one in a million maybe one in two million that are really leaders with character and class.

  3. YOUR CATOON, SMITH FOR CONGRESS, IS ALL ABOUT GEORGE SOROS AND HIS MINIONS SECRETLY FUNDING THE FUNDAMENTAL CHANGE OF AMERICA, RIGHT? OR ARE YOU AN OBEYME MINION YOURSELF??? ALL PISSED OFF THAT REPUBLICANS. HAVE MORE MONEY THAN GEORGE SOROS AND ALL THE OTHER POOR,DO NOTHING,LAY ABOUT WAITING FOR A GOVERNMENT HANDOUT. DEMOCRATS. NEVER TRUST A MAN WITH A PALINDROME IN HIS LAST NAME, HE’S A COMMUNIST. FOX NEWS FOREVER.

    1. You obviously didn’t read Ed’s commentary. Seeing your views, though, does kind of put everything in perspective.

      Jerry (Poor, do nothing Obeyme Minion waiting for a government handout) Brammer

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