Perhaps it's Ka-Ching.

In 2010, the Kangaroos on the Roberts Court ruled essentially that corporations spending money to influence elections and public officials is no longer corruption or influence peddling; it's freedom of speech.

Now in 2014, the same Kangaroos have just ruled that the current individual election cycle spending limit of $123,200-- including a $48,600 cap on total candidate contributions-- simply wasn't enough free speech. With the new ruling in MCCutcheon v. FEC, joint fundraising committees can now accept $3.7 million from a single individual in each election cycle.

Okay, now some of you may be worried about corruption. Well, don't be.

I mean, surely a wonderful person like former Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown didn't insert a special loophole for Wall Street banks into new regulatory measures for Wall Street banks, just because Wall Street banks had been stuffing his pockets with cash for weeks. Fuck no. That was just a coincidence.

If that doesn't reassure you, surely the profound, worldly, not-stupid wisdom of Chief Justice Roberts will:

"Spending large sums of money in connection with elections, but not in connection with an effort to control the exercise of an officeholder’s official duties, does not give rise to such quid pro quo corruption. Nor does the possibility that an individual who spends large sums may garner "influence over or access to" elected officials or political parties." - Chief Justice John Roberts, (p. 19) MCCUTCHEON v. FEDERAL ELECTION COMMISSION

See? There you have it, folks. Not only does spending large sums of money on campaign contributions NOT give rise to quid pro quo corruption, it's not even possible that individuals who do so will have any influence over elected officials. The Chief Kangaroo himself has ruled. It must be true!

I encourage you to read the entire ruling. If you do, set aside a couple of hours and at least one barf bag. A good deal of it reads like the passage above; a complete fool or a gifted liar twisting reality to ensure the outcome he wanted.

Tags: COMMISSION, ELECTION, FEDERAL, MCCUTCHEON, v.

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In Canada there is a very strict limit placed on how much an individual and organization can donate to political parties and an even lower limit on funding election campaigns. In the end the government compensates parties by giving them the equivalent of one dollar for every vote they receive. This results in a "relatively" reasonable amount of money spent on campaigns and also that alternative parties can get some financing that big companies would never give them.

The current conservative government would love to end all limits today though they aren't bold enough yet to do so. Their current agenda is to scrap the one dollar per vote (about ten million dollars every four years or how much the prime ministers office spends on first class flights).

Political donations are usually so dirty and toxic I don't know how any respectable judge could link them to "free speech".

Political donations are usually so dirty and toxic I don't know how any respectable judge could link them to "free speech".

You know how it goes. War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength. The lexicon has expanded in more recent times. Religion is history. Money is speech. That's the standard form of thought control in a democratic society: the paradox. Staple an issue to an unrelated right to nullify or support it.

Most likely, control over election campaign finances is about to be concentrated into the hands of a few thousand extremely rich Americans; they will decide party agendas. By two to one, the new oligarchy will be bankers.

That's the new face of "democracy": bankers, sitting on mountains of money, spending hills of money to buy politicians, so they can make bigger mountains of money.

It'll be interesting to see the fallout as more public scrutiny falls upon campaign finance, given how much the public loathes Wall Street.

(Note the image below was made before the McCutcheon ruling.)

The best way to practice democracy these days is by NOT voting. Sad but true. George Carlin says is better.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxsQ7jJJcEA

Actually, not voting is the best possible way to destroy our democracy.  By not voting, you are allowing the system to run your ass over.  But it's not the presidential vote that really matters, it is you local votes that matter.  If we allow these blood-sucking, totalitarian pieces of shit to rule out towns, counties and states, then of course we get shit for presidents.  The ONLY way that democracy even has a chance is if we all stand up for ourselves, if we demand that local politicians represent US and not the fucking banks and other big businesses. 

I agree. It's imperative that you vote, especially if you feel frustrated and powerless. That goes no matter which party you vote for. Get out there and vote.

---------------------

A friend I used to work with came to the United States from Zambia. One day when he was very young, soldiers drove into his small town, pointed machine guns at the people and announced (in so many words), "Tomorrow is the election. It'd be too bad if there was even ONE vote against So-and-so from this town. Then we'd have to come back and talk about it. So we know all you little fucks are going to vote for So-and-so tomorrow, right?"

The people (not being stupid) said, "Sure thing! We love So-and-so!"

The soldiers left. The next day, all of the people voted for So-and-so. Apparently, this was "campaigning" in Zambia in the 1970s.

I remind myself of that story whenever I start to feel like campaigning in the United States is getting too corrupt. That doesn't make me not care about corruption, but it does make me value the power we all have as voters, even as that power continues to diminish.

Isn't this the same Supreme Court you've told me (and others) we have to unquestioningly accept as correct, when it's something like civil rights law or Obamacare?  With a "now sit down and shut up" attitude?

This too is "settled law."  Suck it.

Isn't this the same Supreme Court you've told me (and others) we have to unquestioningly accept as correct,

Show me where I told you (and others) that the Roberts Supreme Court must be 'unquestioningly accepted as correct'. Find these instances. Link to them here.

It did not happen. You're lying.

when it's something like civil rights law or Obamacare? 

This thread is about the Supreme Court rulings that gutted restrictions on campaign finance. If you want to talk about Supreme Court rulings on Civil Rights law or ObamaCare start separate threads about them.

With a "now sit down and shut up" attitude?

I rather enjoy the idea that you experience me that way, Steve.

Our debates about politics on these boards-- all of which, to my recollection, end with you beaten and vexed-- must be extremely frustrating for you.

You typically can't support your position on merit, so you turn to fallacy, which here you have turned to already.

This too is "settled law."  Suck it.

I didn't say it's not settled law. I said it's a horrible decision that's harmful to democracy. This is about ramifications.

Unless, of course, you would care to defend Roberts' position-- this time without the strawman fabrication-- that rich people shoveling big money into election campaigns has no possibility of influencing politicians and political parties, or giving rise to corruption.

Go for it. I'm sure that would offer the usual entertainment value.

Show me where I told you (and others) that the Roberts Supreme Court must be 'unquestioningly accepted as correct'. Find these instances. Link to them here.

It did not happen. You're lying.

I didn't say you had asserted the Roberts Supreme Court must be, etc., etc.  You added the word "Roberts."  Of course this is merely a minor misquotation on your part, so I won't return the favor you just paid me and accuse you of lying.  Probably just a Freudian slip of some sort, on your part.

In any case I finally found the thread I was thinking of when I made this accusation and read through it carefully.

http://www.thinkatheist.com/forum/topics/same-sex-weddings-cakes-di...

Although some of your argumentation did appear to go to "the courts say so," (as Unseen pointed out) not all of it does (and the reasons for my initial confusion on this point would be OT, even for this digression), so I am going to withdraw that accusation and tender my apologies.

Steve: This too is "settled law."  Suck it.

Gallup:  I didn't say it's not settled law. I said it's a horrible decision that's harmful to democracy. This is about ramifications.

Good.  That could conceivably be an interesting conversation.  In any case since my "Suck it" was based on the same premise I found to be false before, I apologize for it as well.

Unless, of course, you would care to defend Roberts' position-- this time without the strawman fabrication-- that rich people shoveling big money into election campaigns has no possibility of influencing politicians and political parties, or giving rise to corruption.

I wasn't attempting to defend Roberts; he has proved in the past that he is capable of atrocious "reasoning" (though you would probably disagree on the instance I am thinking of--but you've already declared that off-topic for this thread.)  The statement you have quoted in the OP in isolation certainly seems to be another example of such, and I will say more about that below.

Steve: Isn't this the same Supreme Court you've told me (and others) we have to unquestioningly accept as correct,

Gallup: Show me where I told you (and others) that the Roberts Supreme Court must be 'unquestioningly accepted as correct'. Find these instances. Link to them here. It did not happen. You're lying.

Steve: I didn't say you had asserted the Roberts Supreme Court must be, etc., etc.  You added the word "Roberts."

You specifically said "isn't this the same Supreme Court" in response to my OP about the Roberts Court. The word this is deictic; indicative of an external frame of reference which specifically distinguishes one entity from another. 'This same Supreme Court', in the context you used it, is the Roberts Supreme Court.

Unless you're suggesting we are discussing a different Supreme Court-- the Rehnquist Court, the Warren Court, the Burger Court, the Supreme Court of Canada-- you do not get to shed the inherent specificity of 'this same Supreme Court' and credibly claim I've added a false meaning to your words that is not reasonably present in them. What other Supreme Court could I have been talking about?

Of course this is merely a minor misquotation on your part,

It's not a misquote. I quoted you exactly.

so I won't return the favor you just paid me and accuse you of lying. Probably just a Freudian slip of some sort, on your part.

You were lying Steve, in falsely attacking me for making hypocritical statements that I simply did not make. I'm glad you didn't compound that by falsely attacking me for lying as well.

In any case I finally found the thread I was thinking of when I made this accusation and read through it carefully.http://www.thinkatheist.com/forum/topics/same-sex-weddings-cakes-di...

Although some of your argumentation did appear to go to "the courts say so," (as Unseen pointed out) not all of it does (and the reasons for my initial confusion on this point would be OT, even for this digression),

The courts do say so. One may disagree with a ruling that establishes a right (as Unseen did in that thread and as I do in this one) but undeniably the ruling and the right is what the Court says. Pointing that out is light years from advocating for an absolutely correct, never-to-be-questioned Supreme Court (Roberts Court or otherwise). 

so I am going to withdraw that accusation and tender my apologies.

Apology accepted.

Steve: This too is "settled law."  Suck it.

Gallup:  I didn't say it's not settled law. I said it's a horrible decision that's harmful to democracy. This is about ramifications.

Steve: Good.  That could conceivably be an interesting conversation.  In any case since my "Suck it" was based on the same premise I found to be false before, I apologize for it as well.

Apology accepted.

I wasn't attempting to defend Roberts; he has proved in the past that he is capable of atrocious "reasoning" (though you would probably disagree on the instance I am thinking of--but you've already declared that off-topic for this thread.)  The statement you have quoted in the OP in isolation certainly seems to be another example of such, and I will say more about that below.

In the OP I encouraged everyone to read the entire ruling. It's obviously too expansive to include all of it here. I think the quoted statement I put in the OP is typical of its findings. It's just astonishing that the Court is making declarations like that one.

I think the worst part about this, like the fairly recent "revelations" that the government is actually spying on the US public, is the apathy that we're going to see about it.  "Oh, businesses and really rich people can buy an election?  How terrible.  I think I'll go take a nap."  And yet, I'm not even sure what route is the best way to go to fix this corruption problem :/

Government is force.  And the more we ask it to do, the more force we are asking it to use.  The more force is used, the more people will want to influence that.  Some will use it to get ahead, and others (their victims, oftentimes) will even be cornered to the point where it's sheer self preservation to do so.

People who want the government to do everything for them and to others don't realize that the inevitable consequence of getting what they want will be corruption.

Amen to that, brother.

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