When these clowns Roberts and Alito came up for nomination for the Supreme Court under ultra-rightwing George Bush’s Administration, the few of us who are sane were saying all along that these guys were a nightmare in waiting. Almost none of my “liberal” friends believed me. After all, I’m Chicken Little. The Democratic Party completely caved in to the ultraright radicals that Bush nominated, saying in effect that they were just fine. Alito in particular was outrageous, lying for days on the stand.
Now we’ve come full circle and as usual, Chicken Little me was right and my liberal friends and the idiot Democratic Party were dead wrong. Perhaps you have heard of the Citizens United vs. FEC case (full court brief)that was decided on January 21, 2010. First of all, the case is the most egregious case of judicial activism. Based on in stare decesis, the Court is supposed to allow lower court rulings to stand, in this case an appellate court ruling. Further, the finding that the court ruled on was one that the plaintiffs had already agreed to drop in lower court.
In order to overrule the lower court, there must be a clear, present and immediate public need involved. What is the clear and present public need in overturning all of our campaign financing laws?
It’s much worse than that. We are now not allowed to put any limits whatsoever on campaign contributions by the corporations and the rich. Medical lobbies spent $1.5 million/day during the Heath Care Reform debate to kill progressive reform. There are now estimates that we could see lobbies spending up to 30-50 times as much as they are currently spending. That’s a tsunami of campaign cash.
Those of you who don’t live in the US don’t know what it’s like. Especially during election season, you are bombarded with an endless barrage of big-money and corporate commercials on the TV. Turn on the radio and it’s similar. Open your mailbox and and an avalanche of corporate brochures piles into your lap. Open a newspaper and there are huge big money and corporate full page ads all through our biggest papers.
Never mind that nearly all of the TV and radio stations, large newspapers and newsmagazines are already more or less exact mouthpieces of these same corporate and big money interests.
In every way that makes sense, America is now an oligarchy. Like similar oligarchical shitholes scattered all of over the ruined Third World, the class interests are foreordained. On my Maoist list, a Maoist recently said that it is the position of the moneyed classes everywhere on Earth to be ultraright.
This is their logical position. They can’t be blamed for it anymore than a shark can be blamed for attacking a swimmer. In the ruined Third World, the rich and the upper middle classes and sadly often the entire business class always lines up with the most ferociously reactionary wing of the oligarchy.
Tragically, much of the middle class often does the same. Recall that Marx said that the middle classes always ally themselves with the rich. In the US, typically once anyone gets any money at all, they usually move into this ultra-right position. This is particularly true if they make their fat cash working for a corporation.
So this is what we’ve become. A wealthy version of a Third World oligarchical ultra-right shithole. The stolen elections are already here. The oligarchs have a death grip on the media. Civil liberties are winding down. So what’s next?
In the event of any profound Left uprising, even unarmed such as Guatemala 1954, El Salvador 1980, Aristide in Haiti, Chavez in Venezuela, Allende in Chile, Morales in Bolivia, Correa in Ecuador, Dominican Republic 1965 or Brazil 1964, I would assume the US would quickly witness military coups, death squads and possibly even armed guerrillas on the Left as a response. If a Left regime came to power, we may well see armed contras, probably funded by the rich and the corporations.
The law shreds 100 years of laws by state and federal governments that attempted to limit campaign contributions. David Souter dourly noted this in his dissent.
The following is an interesting argument from a website I’m a member of suggesting that the decision was treason. Reason being that the court refused to say that foreigners could not also spend as much as they wanted to influence US issues and elections. This means that the only way to stop foreigners from flooding our political debates and campaigns with cash to buy their way to control over our nation is for the Congress to stop them by passing a law.
But such a law can never be passed because an openly treasonous party, the Republican Party, will never pass any law limiting foreigners right to spend whatever they can to influence our debates and elections. So we’re screwed.
Many are suggesting an Amendment of the Constitution. This will not work. We need 67 votes in the Senate, and we don’t have them. Then we need 75% of the states to pass and it ain’t happening. Even the reasonable Equal Rights Amendment has never been able to get through due to idiot rightwing opposition in the states.
By any fair legal definition, the decision yesterday by The Supreme Court 5 constitutes nothing less than an act of treason against the people of the United States. Having read and analyzed the entire 183 page decision and all of its concurring and dissenting opinions ourselves, we are fully prepared to support this accusatory conclusion.
Having so grossly abused its jurisdiction by presuming to decide a question expressly waived by the petitioner in the Court below (p 12), this rogue Supreme Court ruled for the first time that no corporation can be constrained from unlimited influence over our elections.
And even assuming that the Court intended the decision to only apply to American corporations, the Court expressly declined (pp 46-47) to reach the question of whether foreign ownership stakes in American corporations should likewise be given carte blanche to put their thumbs on the scales of our democracy.
Thus, until Congress further acts (and it must, though it could not have escaped the attention of The Supreme Court 5 that the current Republican minority has vowed to obstruct anything of consequence that Congress might try to pass), there is now nothing to constrain foreign nationals, even our most sworn enemies, from usurping what even the most die hard Tea Bagger takes as an article of faith, that the rights of citizenship of this country are only for Americans.
This must be construed, within the four corners of our Constitution, as deliberately and knowingly exposing the United States of America to harm in the interim, by giving “aid and comfort” to our enemies (Constitution Article 3, section 3), should our enemies now wish to take advantage of this unprecedented and rash decision. In simple constitutional terms . . . treason!!
The fact is that we now live in a world of giant transnational
corporations, with allegiance to no sovereign government, let alone our own, sworn only to exploit the most vulnerable and desperate workers they can find in any country of the world. How does The Supreme Court 5 propose parsing which of these extra-national legal artificialities should be allowed to corrupt our democratic election process? Apparently in their minds, all of them.
So what is it that we can and must do? The first and most prominent proposal we heard yesterday, and which we of course support, was to amend the Constitution to clarify that corporations have no such rights as people (which is to say U.S. citizens).
While this certainly could not hurt, and would obviously help (assuming such an proposed amendment could garner 67 votes in a Senate already stalemated by obstructionism, let alone be ratified by 3/4 of the states, including many “red” ones), what we must first assert is that there is nothing wrong with our Constitution, and demand that Congress do whatever it can to protect it.
Because just as importantly, we are on ominous and clear notice that there is no further outrage these 5 gangsters in black robes are not gleefully and arrogantly capable of. Indeed, in his dissenting opinion (that the majority did not go far enough), Clarence Thomas characterized the decision as only a “first step” (Thomas opinion p. 1).
It is worth nothing that the authorship of the majority opinion is claimed by Anthony M. Kennedy, heretofore generally considered the least wing nutty of the 5. Therefore, the immediate and unavoidably
necessary recourse must be impeachment for all five, treason already being a high crime, otherwise the horrors yet to issue from their treacherous minds is too terrible to contemplate.