At Last Something Most Agree On

Discussion in 'Politics' started by b.c., Feb 17, 2010.

  1. b.c.

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    Perhaps there's hope yet...

    Left and right united in opposition to controversial SCOTUS decision - Yahoo! News

    Also of interest in recent polls (which include a 52% disapproval rating of President Obama) are numbers that show voters would can two thirds of Congress. Maybe this in part is why:

    "The findings of the poll are a bit surprising considering the fact that the case split the Supreme Court, with the five conservative justices in favor and the four more liberal justices against it. The decision was almost universally hailed by Republicans in Washington, who saw it as a victory for the free speech provided for under the Constitution, while President Obama and prominent Democrats in Washington almost universally derided it as a dark day for American democracy."
     
    #1 b.c., Feb 17, 2010
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2010
  2. Flashy

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    i can't agree on it...i think we should can 85% of congress...not merely 2/3rds of them

    :smile:
     
  3. maxcok

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    Well, whadduyah know . . . . we agree. Maybe the most important thing we could agree on. I hope this is true. This was the worst SCOTUS decision ever, and a serious threat to democracy. I can only hope Congress can do something, and fast, to counteract it. It'll be interesting to see who, if anybody, shows up here in support of it.
     
  4. unabear09

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    Worst......Ruling.......EVER
     
  5. maxcok

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    The 5-4 conservative majority decision in Citizens United vs. the Federal Election Commission that struck many decades of law and precedent will likely go down in history as one of the Supreme Court's most egregious exercises of judicial activism. . . The decision makes a mockery of Chief Justice Roberts' pious statements during his confirmation hearing that he embraced judicial modesty and constitutional avoidance. . . A radical conservative Supreme Court majority cavalierly decided to redress an alleged shortage of corporate political speech in American democracy. If, as I suspect, most Americans are bewildered and dismayed by that decision, their best recourse is to use their numbers and organizing energies to ensure that individual speech is not drowned by the trillions of dollars of corporate assets. - Thomas Mann - Brookings Institution

    Campaign Finance - Brookings Institution

    Last month, I was saddened to witness a conservative Supreme Court majority overturn more than a century of Republican-led limits on special interest money in our elections. That such a rash and immoderate ruling could come from a chief justice once publicly committed to respecting precedent, and win praise from leaders of my party, is beyond my power to comprehend. As a concerned citizen and former member of Congress, I fear the long-term consequences of this ill-conceived ruling in Citizens United v. FEC on our republic. - Warren Rudman, Former Senator NH (R) and Chair of the bipartisan citizen initiative Americans for Campaign Reform

    Warren Rudman: Public, not corporations, should finance campaigns‎

    Congressional Democrats proposed a plan Thursday to place new restrictions on spending for political campaigns, a move intended to blunt the impact of a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling that made it easier for corporations, unions and other groups to spend heavily on campaign advertisements. . . Van Hollen, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, said that if nothing is done to mitigate the impact of the Supreme Court ruling, "the floodgates to big corporate money that can drown out the voices of American citizens" will open wide. "We have to move quickly," said Charles Schumer, chairman of the Senate Rules Committee. "If not, the court ruling will have a disastrous, immediate effect (on) the 2010 elections." . . Whether the modest plan would pass Congress — or be effective, if passed — is questionable, according to some campaign-finance experts.

    Democrats try to blunt Supreme Court's campaign-finance ruling
     
    #5 maxcok, Feb 18, 2010
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2010
  6. B_starinvestor

    B_starinvestor New Member

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    I don't like the outcome of this decision either. Perhaps we should have some discussion about how the decision relates to freedom of speech? Was the supreme court correct in its interpretation?
     
  7. Pitbull

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    I would like to see exactly how the question was phrased when it was asked in the poll.

    I would guess most of those polled don't really have a good understanding of the issue.

    Having free speech means that free speech extends to those who are saying things we disagree with and don't like.

    And that means Corporations, Labor Unions and other organizations.

    The problem with this legislation is that if is OK to silence one....
     
  8. maxcok

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    Like you, for instance, judging by the rest of your post.
     
  9. tripod

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    Labor unions = worker's rights

    corporations = unlimited wealth for the shareholders.

    Labor unions were created in the name of justice and fairness

    Corporations were created in the name of greed

    They are not equal despite the anti-union propaganda that will no doubt be slinged here after I type this.

    One is rooted in humanity and one is rooted in craving and insatiableness.

    They are not equal in a just world.
     
  10. maxcok

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    They are also not equal in the amount of cash they can throw into an election. Corporations have a huge advantage here. Another reason this is so insidious.
     
  11. B_starinvestor

    B_starinvestor New Member

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    Tri!! You're killing me here:biggrin1:

    Over the last ten years there was no shareholder wealth created at all. The S&P 500 averaged -1% for the entire decade.

    Arghhhhh! Corporations were created so that people with little/no money could start a business, multiple people could have access to ownership, and potential growth and expansion would provide jobs, benefits, innovation, etc., etc., etc.

    I believe unions are important and critical - and have been very effective; but when they became too powerful, they are harmful and can be a big barrier to productivity and progress.
     
  12. maxcok

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    #12 maxcok, Feb 19, 2010
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2010
  13. tripod

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    I have no idea what you are talking about. How the hell did the top 1% gain so much fucking wealth in the last ten years then? They have doubled their wealth in the last fifteen years while the common man has seen his wealth actually drop when inflation is figured in. They certainly didn't earn it by waking up at 4:30am and putting on a pair of steel toed boots before they went to their job ,where they worked ahard day's work. The top 1% have never even had a fucking job that wasn't given to them.

    I corrected your statement for ya.

    "Corporations were created so that people with little/no money could get rich, multiple people could have access to ownership (and the profits), and potential growth and expansion would provide great wealth for a select few."

    Look Star, if you have a business and are incorporated, that's totally cool. Many corporations are nothing more than tiny businesses that are structured so that they owners won't lose any of their personal wealth if the business fails. Who could have any problem with that? Hell, my parent's business should be incorporated some day (I work for my family).

    If the corporations were so concerned with providing jobs, why are they making everything in China and have stopped providing jobs for Americans? There are no jobs in the U.S. because the corporations don't give a fuck whether we starve to death or not. The only innovation that they are after, is the kind that puts tons of money in their pockets.

    It's like you are staring me bold in the face and telling me that greed doesn't exist. I don't appreciate being lied to.

    What is disgusting about labor unions is how the mafia got involved with them. I don't think there is a labor union with any real power here in America anymore. Conservatives feel that they should be able to get labor for nothing and that is why labor unions need to check their greed.

    Of course, the search for almost zero cost labor has sent our jobs to China. The corporations owe their allegiance not to America, but to the almighty dollar.

    We are debating the equality of labor unions to corporations which has everything to do with the decision.
     
    #13 tripod, Feb 19, 2010
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2010
  14. B_starinvestor

    B_starinvestor New Member

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    Who were 'my boys?' You must be referring to the Democratically-controlled Congress - where laws are written. BTW, Pelosi is a female and probably wouldn't appreciate being called one of the 'boys.'

    Actually, Maxcock - its middle America that needs the stock market more than anybody. If it weren't for the returns provided by stocks, middle America couldn't ever retire. Those that sock money into equity mutual funds over the long-term are able to build enough of a nest egg that they can retire. So - you can rail against publicly traded stocks all you want; but they are an essential tool for paying for retirement, college education and a host of other expenses in life.



    this thread has been sitting dormant for a couple days. But please - grace us with your overview of the SCOTUS decision.

    And stop being so grouchy and cynical.
     
  15. maxcok

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    Actually, star was waxing on about the value and necessity of corporations, which is beside the point. The fact that labor unions represent workers who are voters, i.e. actual people, is relevant. I submit that labor unions do not have the resources to compete with corporations in financing political campaigns, which is also quite relevant to the discussion. Nevertheless, I'll respond to star's tangent, but then I'm moving on:

    Probably true, but kinda sad it's come to that, IMHO. Course if we weren't such a disposable society hellbent on overconsumption and paying on credit we might have more of a 'nest egg' too.

    Less than 24 hrs. As usual you exaggerate. What that is relevant to I can't imagine.

    My views on the SCOTUS decision are well documented here and in numerous other threads. I've also provided links to analysts who support my views. Please stop trying to pick fights for the hell of it.

    I'm not grouchy. I may be cynical about some things. I would call myself pessimistic on this one. There's not much hope if people don't get up and demand action.
     
    #15 maxcok, Feb 19, 2010
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2010
  16. D_Tully Tunnelrat

    D_Tully Tunnelrat New Member

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    There's not doubt this was a lousy SCOTUS decision, but the complete lack of limits, and discernment on the part of this court will, undoubtedly, not be the last word. In fact, the utter laissez faire attitude of the court is the legal equivalent of the right wing's propounding the merits of the efficient, self-regulating markets thesis. Given the loss of $75T in wealth globally, that thesis has been proven indisputably wrong, as I imagine ultimately will be the legal consensus on CU vs. FEC.

    What's interesting to note is that despite all the briefs, the majority, and dissenting opinions, the decision was made without regard to the intent of the originating entity, and/or funding source. In this case, Citizens United was merely acting as a frontman for Lawrence Kadish's money. Kadish is a right wing likud type in NY, who amassed great wealth from his real estate investments, and never met a law suit he did not like. Kadish, like the Mellons, Sciafe, and Coors clans has been a long time big bucks funding sugar daddy to conservative causes, and PACs.

    What's dishonest about the court's decision is their calling all corporations equal. In 1791, when the 1st Amendment was written, no corporation was formed for the purposes of solely espousing a political point of view. In the case of Citizens United, that is their only intent. This is completely different than the intent of a legitimate news corporation, like the ABC, NBC, etc., so how can freedom of speech be applied equally to corporations of differing intents? In point of fact, CU's "free speech" was bought and paid for by Kadish with a single purpose: to destroy Hilary Clinton's presidential candidacy. This was not an exercise in free speech, it was a personal grudge, played out in a legal, but unprofessional and infantile manner, and yet has been sanctioned by the court, who debated it's intent and effects only in the abstract.

    If "Hilary - the Movie" had been produced by Kadish, the individual, he would have been held to liable, and slander laws, since the movie made no attempt to even allege facts, but simply engages in a character assassination of Hilary Clinton. However, since Kadish hid behind Citizens United's non-profit status, he did not have direct liability. Furthermore CU is "more free" to make undocumented assertions, because they are not held to the liable standards of a news source, as they are "merely" espousing a political point of view, which, so far, they able to maintain is free speech.

    This is very different from extending freedom of speech to legitimate news entities, newspapers, etc., which are also corporations. Although news corporations do exist to make money, they are not designed, as is Citizens, to espouse a specific political point of view. Even Fox, which many (and virtually all here) say leans far to the right, describes itself as "fair and balanced." This is highly debatable to those who will only accept multiple, and/or primary sources for their news, but nonetheless is vital for Fox to maintain they practice, as otherwise they would be written off as merely a single point of view mouth piece, which, in fact, is what CU is. This acceptance of myopic media slopism further lowers the bar, as to what is, or is not news, and why freedom of speech should only extend to entities who actually further the discourse, and public edification by allowing multiple points of view.

    I certainly don't have the answers, but am groping for the distinctions that will render the current courts simplistic opinion bare for the lazy, and dangerous thinking it represents, as it needs to be reconsidered in context of intent, level of funding, and in the case of political candidates: legislative access. All I do know is that when Kadish's, Chevron's, or GE's "free speech" costs the same as mine, then the First Amendment will have been correctly interpreted. That has not been the case for over 30 years, and now it's officially so.
     
  17. maxcok

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    Wow! That was impressive as all get out. There you go star.

    How bout I just sign off on the above. Rebuttal?
     
    #17 maxcok, Feb 19, 2010
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2010
  18. Pitbull

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    Tossing childish insults around without any substance to support your assertions again.

    Try reading this:

    Bill of Rights Transcript

    Specifically
    Amendment I Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
     
  19. b.c.

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    "Abridging the freedom of speech" can be readily tossed about as an argument for or against many laws.

    For example one might argue that laws that govern the publishing of pornographic material or its availability may "abridge" a publisher's freedom of speech. One might argue certain laws and legal recourse for libel and slander may "abridge" someone's freedom of speech to engage in such.

    The fact that the Bill of Rights exist is acknowledgement that our laws are ever evolving instruments by which our courts are continuously charged with their just and proper interpretation... presumably for the "common good".

    Therefore one may argue that giving corporations and big business the means to pour unlimited financial resources into support of a candidate or a cause can in fact result in the abridgement of the freedom of speech of those with less financial resources, because they will be significantly disadvantaged in their ability to get their message out, to counter, or to garner political support.

    In essence, those with the most financial influence will be in the position to buy their "freedom of speech". And that's fucked.
     
  20. faceking

    faceking Well-Known Member

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    Oh my god... are you like.... 12 yrs old?

    In the words of Walter Sobchatk... you have no frame of reference, Tripod. You are like a child who wanders into the middle of a movie and wants to know...
     
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