Saturday, January 23, 2010

Corporations are people, too

I can't seem to wrap my head around the Supreme Court's decision Thursday in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission that essentially removes all bans on corporate political spending. I'm flabbergasted, frankly. While I've read numerous defenses of the 5-4 decision that overturned not one but two long-standing precedents, it just seems everyone is skirting around the issue with a lot of feel good First Amendment prattle. Corporations, in the area of speech at least, are people apparently. I just see this as the opening of the purse strings to allow HUGE sums of money to influence voters. You might be thinking: Wait? Can't they just form PACs? Yes. But as it is explained in the Court's opinion, PACs are burdensome and regulated. They require a level of transparency that is just, well, too much. We don't want pesky regulation getting in the way of free speech that is bought and paid for by ginormous corporations that want to convince you to vote against your own interests. Of no surprise is the way the vote split along ideological lines.


What a fucking farce.

At least dissenting Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens brought some much-needed hilarity to this rather sad moment in judicial history:
"Under the majority's rule, I suppose it may be a First Amendment problem that corporations are not permitted to vote, given that voting is, among other things, a form of speech."

1 comment:

Robert Huffman said...

I really wish Justice Stevens wouldn't give those crazies any bright ideas.