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September 28, 2021


The Floodgates are Open


This week I listened to one of the right-wing sock puppets yammer on about what a victory for freedom the most recent campaign finance court decision was. Honestly. The guy was more about “free and dumb” than freedom.

The court, in yet another 5-4 decision, basically created eBay for elections. What we didn’t need was more stinking money in our election process but the five say otherwise. Freedom of speech is now equated with how much money you have and are willing to spend. Of course, the reverse doesn’t work. You can’t walk into a store and purchase items with your words. It’s insane. If money is speech, most of us are mute.

Justice Stephen Breyer, in his dissent said, “If the court in Citizens United opened a door, today’s decision may well open a floodgate.”

Oh, great.

My dear Alaskans, it’s going to get much worse. There’s a lot up for grabs in Alaska, and not a lot of voters to persuade. There are cities with more votes for mayor than Alaska has for top slots in Washington, D.C.

The election process is already a few sump pumps short of a democracy — and sinking. The last hundred years or so the U.S. Supreme Court has systematically transferred to corporations the rights of actual citizens.

You hear about how immigrants are coming to our shores and taking services and how we need to build a fence but you don’t hear remotely comparable bitching and moaning about foreign corporations coming here, getting subsidized, using resources and dodging taxes. Heck, they can kill American workers in industrial accidents without being considered foreign terrorists. Since the court seems nothing if not predictably misguided, I expect next they’ll decide corporations are entitled to impose their “religious beliefs” on their workers. The Hobby Lobby case will determine if a corporation can deny its employees health care benefits its owners don’t like — like birth control.

The whole concept is wrong-headed. More rights for corporations and fewer rights for individual Americans, with no end in sight.

Get ready to pledge allegiance to the United Corporations of America. Picture a flag with 50 corporate logos instead of stars. No more voting hassles, just an endless public auction of politicians. As they say, the one with the gold rules.

The part that really chaps me is we fought a revolutionary war as much to throw off the power of the East India Trading Company as to dump England’s royal parasites. You know, the original tea party.

Once our nation was founded, our leaders were specific in their desire to control corporations. A charter had to be granted by a state. Corporations could deal in one commodity and were only permitted to exist for several decades. They were only allowed to own their own stocks. What property they owned had to be for the purposes of business goals, not for investment. Oh, here’s a kicker: Our founders, who knew a thing or two about bad government, had laws on the books making “any political contribution by corporations a criminal offense.”

In 1816, Thomas Jefferson said, “I hope that we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations, which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country.”

Sorry, T.J., we didn’t crush them. We feed and water them at the expense of the neediest among us, and our highest court scurries to hand them the inalienable rights that were supposed to belong to the people.

In 1864, President Abraham Lincoln suspected corporations were profiting from both sides of the Civil War:

“I see in the near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. As a result of war, corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands, and the Republic is destroyed. I feel at this moment more anxiety for the safety of my country than ever before, even in the midst of war. God grant that my suspicions may prove groundless.”

Sorry, Abe, you had it right. Or maybe it’s worse than you feared.

If only our leaders and the court could channel President Theodore Roosevelt:

“We can do nothing of good in the way of regulating and supervising these corporations until we fix clearly in our minds that we are not attacking the corporations, but endeavoring to do away with any evil in them. We are not hostile to them; we are merely determined that they shall be so handled as to serve the public good. We draw the line against misconduct, not against wealth.”

This article is cross-posted at The Anchorage Daily News



26 Responses to “The Floodgates are Open”
  1. mike from iowa says:

    Nearly 80 degrees yesterday and today near white-out conditions. Dirty racker fracker mother nature!

  2. mike from iowa says:

    Mississippi State Senator Chris McDaniel is a Tea Party guy so that puts him at direct opposition against another Republican branch – the Libertarians.

    A Libertarian is just a Tea Party member with a bong.

  3. mike from iowa says:

    Breaking News Flash Extra Drop What You Are Doing And Pay Achtung,Baby: Bristol, The heir to the Palin tiara, just graduated from Primrose something something in Arizona and is heading back to Alaska to work for a dermatologist. First order of bidness is to help Ma grow scales to protect her pasty white,thin hide from us commoners.Besides,Bristol misses her truck. Apparently they don’t have trucks in Arizona.

  4. mike from iowa says:

    South Carolina lege wants to extend stand your ground protection to fetii,so watch out Planned Parenthood and OBGYNs who want to practice their love with female patients,as dumb bass dubya so eloquently mangled it.

  5. mike from iowa says:

    OT Here is a shiny new toy for depraved white,male pervert,pols to play with so they’ll leave women’s lady parts alone.

  6. mike from iowa says:

    In a once in a blue moon happening,Texas wingnuts in the lege voted with Libs to pass an equal pay for equal work bill which Guv. GoodHair promptly vetoed,saying Macy’s and Kroger’s asked him to veto it. Flood gates are open ,even in water-challenged Texas. The flood is corrupt money and it flows up to Perry.

  7. Alaska Pi says:

    I hope you are doing some long distance listening
    Two women, Densham and Anahita from Ester, brought something special to the Festival tonight

    There’s a link to a youtube video of
    Flame into Grace .

    Gonna take me a coupla days to get past that one.

  8. mike from iowa says:

    Beware the Kochlai Kahn Bros and their howling Mogul Whordes take umbrage when mere mortals disparage holy owned Kochlai Kahn Bros subsidiaries such as the Scotus. 🙂

  9. mike from iowa says:

    I hope Dems all across ‘murrica are fed up and ready to fight for our country. Wingnuts everywhere and the activist Scotus have prevericated real Americans far more than it took to get dumb bass dubya to invade a sovereign nation(Iraq). What are we,as upstanding citizens gonna do about it? We gonna fight back or curl into the fetal position and surrender to the elitists? One good sock to the nose and they’ll be snorting gore and tears and will be meek as lambs. Let’s do it!!.

  10. St.Elias says:

    Watch out Shannyn, as Chuckie Koch already had his feelings hurt the other day. Courtesy of the Wall Street Journal and his minions in the US Congress his temper tantrum received broad exposure. It is most interesting to see just how thin-skinned the ultra-ultra rich really are. In part, Here is what he said:

    “Instead of encouraging free and open debate, collectivists strive to discredit and intimidate opponents. They engage in character assassination. (I should know, as the almost daily target of their attacks.) This is the approach that Arthur Schopenhauer described in the 19th century, that Saul Alinsky famously advocated in the 20th, and that so many despots have infamously practiced. Such tactics are the antithesis of what is required for a free society—and a telltale sign that the collectivists do not have good answers.”

    Listening to this dude one would believe those who engage in cooperative enterprise or aggregate grouping (collectivists) are the only ones guilty of character assassination. Wow, he’s saying Faux News and the The Wall Street Journal would never do that as liberals are absolutely never subjected to personal attack from the right.

    “Truth is that saying the Koch brothers are using their wealth to promote a political agenda that will make them even wealthier is a substantive claim, not character assassination; it’s not at all the same as, say, suggesting that President Obama is a Terrorist Muslim.”

    But the Kochs and their billionaire ilk act as if this kind of thing is an utterly despicable attack on their liberty. What we constantly hear from Koch lackeys and right wingers is that the great unwashed, liberals, progressives, ect have no standing to ridicule billionaires. Why they say this? Well “the sheer wealth of the 0.1 percent has a kind of gravitational attraction, pulling people into their orbit and their worldview.” Sadly, this very real conflict between what’s good for oligarchs and what’s good for the economy is indirectly having a powerful effect in distorting 237 years of cultural and economic evolution of within our nation.

    So, America’s poor embattled billionaires are demanding this, maybe as their birthright, something that is much more important for them, not freedom for us all but freedom from criticism of them. Chuckie Boy in effect says: Anybody saying anything negative about me is just like a Nazis, or maybe Stalin.

    • mike from iowa says:

      Good work. Thanks to unfettered wealth, ‘murrica is now free to be sold to the highest bidder.

    • Alaska Pi says:

      St Elias- like 10K times!!!

      • Alaska Pi says:

        oops. Forgot to say- doesn’t this Mr Koch doof understand that representative democracy is a form of horizontal collectivism? 🙂

        • St.Elias says:

          Yes, true, one of the problems I have with the new gilded age aristocracy and some of these Koch lackey trolls you find, like over on Shannyn’s ADN columns, is that they don’t understand the historical economic benefits organized labor has provided for our US society at large and simply don’t know the difference between “Capitalism” and “Laissez-Faire Capitalism”.

          • Alaska Pi says:

            And I’m sick to pieces of the increasing social costs of corporate welfare and the like that those yahoos ignore.

  11. mike from iowa says:

    Excellent work as usual,Ms Moore. The Scotus should be paid in free speech since they equate free speech with money. I’m afraid if Obie or the next Dem Potus gets to appoint any justices for the Scotus,every nominee will be filibustered and I hope Dems pay wingnuts back in kind. Until the right comes back towards the middle bi-partisanship is dead.

  12. Alaska Pi says:

    I’ve been having a rough time with this decision too. Read too many oh-but-the-unions-can-do-it-too opinions which seem to rely on the idea that there will be “equality in voice” because non-right leaning organizations can engage in the same crap. Why, even the Dems can go after moneybags donors with a will.Yeah, right. Yahoo. Just what we need. Pffft!

    The biggest deal for me is that the medium of exchange, currency, has supplanted actual voice. That the products it buys are considered speech in law.

    Folks a lot smarter and more articulate than me have deconstructed this crap, Shannyn does well here, but it’s not getting us anywhere at this point.
    How are we everyday people going to change the effect these “products” have on elections?
    This particular Court is not going to help reel it in, so how are we going to do it?

    How do we break the stranglehold carefully crafted political products filling out radio ads, TV screens, and print media have on actual political discourse?
    How do we draw a firm line between the way we organize ourselves in business transactions and the way we organize ourselves politically?

    • mike from iowa says:

      Snow is gone and I’m out of moderation,even though three posts yesterday disappeared. Ex MIL has cancer and enters hospice today. Love her to death,it is her family I can’t put up with. Not a big enough person to put personal animosities aside. Think I’ll go mow last year’s asparagus stalks . Loved your reply to Kate at other page. My forever inspiratin! 🙂

      • Alaska Pi says:

        I’m sure sorry about your beloved MIL.
        Just watched a whopper avalanche off the mountain about a half mile away. Spring here has the roar of ‘lanches , hooters hooting, and the chitter of eagles rising on thermals as its musical accompaniment 🙂

    • JHypers says:

      “How are we everyday people going to change the effect these “products” have on elections?”

      Don’t buy the products. And by that, I mean disconnect the cable or satellite, cancel the newspaper and magazine subscriptions, and turn the radio off.

      “How do we break the stranglehold carefully crafted political products filling out radio ads, TV screens, and print media have on actual political discourse?”

      Again, don’t buy it by listening to or reading it…and by that I mean refuse to even be exposed to it. Understand that, in this paradigm, you are not a citizen, but a consumer. Your lone advantage remains choice, and you can still choose to not be exposed to this stuff. Corporations hate bad investments, so do your part to make it one.

      “How do we draw a firm line between the way we organize ourselves in business transactions and the way we organize ourselves politically?”

      How about a firm separation of state and economy? Kind of like the whole religion bit: people have their own thoughts and beliefs, but business/financial/corporate/general money interests remain completely out of the government/political process…while at the same time, government removes itself from the economic equation to the greatest extent possible. You might think that would result in a libertarian dystopian nightmare, but I simply don’t see how that could be possible if money cannot control state power…and state power cannot control money.

      The way I see it, this corporatist trend is just a continuation of what began during Clinton’s reign in 1996, when media regulations were slashed allowing moguls like Murdoc and Turner to buy up the airwaves and print outlets en masse.

  13. mike from iwa says:

    Excellent as always,Ms Moore. Money is speech,pay Robert’s salary with speech. I believe Roberts hisownself said money doesn’t buy influence. I can attest to that. All the piddling monies I could gather wouldn’t interes any pol,therefore money doesn’t buy access or influence. Free speech in massive,copious amounts does buy access and politician’s souls and votes. The activist wingnut Scotus is a wholly owned subsidiary of korpo-rot amerika.

  14. Zyxomma says:

    Well said, Shannyn. I’m having some difficulty controlling my temper on this one, although with the Roberts court, egregiousness follows upon evil.

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