Supreme Court says corporations can spend as much money as they want on election campaigns.
WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court has ruled that corporations may spend freely to support or oppose candidates for president and Congress, easing decades-old limits on their participation in federal campaigns.
By a 5-4 vote, the court on Thursday overturned a 20-year-old ruling that said corporations can be prohibited from using money from their general treasuries to pay for their own campaign ads. The decision, which almost certainly will also allow labor unions to participate more freely in campaigns, threatens similar limits imposed by 24 states.
The decision, written by Justice Anthony Kennedy, removes limits on independent expenditures that are not coordinated with candidates’ campaigns.
The full decision may be read here
Nice of the ‘librul’ Washington Post to throw in the bit about labour unions being able to spend more also but the unions of today don’t have near the excess cash of American corporations. This decision doesn’t even restrict foreign countries or companies from spending money on American campaigns – all they have to do is have some type of legal business registered in a US state.
and you thought politicians were ‘bought and paid for’ previously? Ha! Ordinary Americans of any stripe have just been relegated to the back row of the upper balcony in the theatre of modern American politics.
The entire concept of corporations as persons with equal rights to human beings goes back to a clerk inserting a phrase into a SCOTUS decision after the judges had ruled. The case was Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad Company. A brief explanation may be read here
A NYTimes editorial this past Sept concluded with these words
The drive to give corporations more rights is coming from the court’s conservative bloc — a curious position given their often-proclaimed devotion to the text of the Constitution.
The founders of this nation knew just what they were doing when they drew a line between legally created economic entities and living, breathing human beings.
This is very bad for all living, breathing American citizens. Those on the right with their teabagging party protests about socialism and those on the left worried about the environment – you are now inconsequential bits of fluff on the floor of the chamber that housed the political conversation. Your megaphones will not be heard over the roar of the media. In the worst of all possible outcomes, movie houses will only be showing escapist films with zero political content or propaganda films supported by the theatres owners. TV shows will also be either mindless entertainment or purely partisan in the way that FoxNews acts today – 3 of the potential Repub candidates already work for Fox, we can expect to see even more of their faces from now on. Opposition candidates, unsupported by a corporation will never be seen on your screens.
The Supreme Court of the United States has just killed democracy. Sure you can stand out in front of your house and shout at traffic, or join a Tea Party with a few thousand others but if the corporations don’t want to show your opinions on TV or print them in your local paper – eh, too bad. You still have freedom of speech but damn few people are going to ever be able to hear what you have to say.
Remember that “Fairness Doctrine” that Limpballs, Scammity and O’Really have been screaming about for years? It is really gone now. The Fairness Doctrine stipulated that all broadcast media had to provide equal time for opposing political views, often that meant the opposition was broadcast in the wee hours of the morning but at least they were sent out. With this decision, every word you read, every voice you hear during political campaigns will be from a corporate employee.
From this day forth, all political candidates will either be corporate lackeys or independently wealthy individuals whose wealth is not held in corporate shares and who then MAY listen to some of their constituents but really why should they bother?
The mindless bias of some Americans is exemplified by the following comment posted at 10:38AM on the NYTimes site
Doesn’t say how they voted but any bets the newest judge had something to do with it? Nothing like telling corporations and unions to do whatever they want to buy/steal/control an election and just in time for the Nov. elections after the Democrats get their heads handed to them in MA –
The words of a person so blinded by their personal beliefs that all the words written about the decision have convinced him that the exact opposite of reality has taken place. Newly-seated Justice Sotomayor voted against corporate/union funding but this individual is sure in that tiny thing he calls a brain that it was the ‘libruls’ who voted for it.