We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
What is amazing to me is that there were any votes on the Supremes opposed. Why would anybody in America want to squelch voices and opinions? Unless they have contempt for the peoples' opinions?
It's a sickness, and it has a foothold, but not quite a majority, on the Court. We The People need all points of view, and we have the duty to apply our BS Detectors and biases as best we can. Seems to me that politicians are the biggest purveyors of self-interested BS, but their expensive speech cannot be outlawed.
A 5 - 4 deision! We dodged a bullet... THIS time. The government's next big target is the internet. The feds want to decide what is OK to blog about, and what isn't. Real government censorship is on the horizon.
The article's last sentence is right on the money: "Just more evidence, if any were needed, that the stakes in this November’s elections could not be higher." And Breyer should be impeached.
With Obama simply issuing Royal decrees to pass laws whenever Congress isn't being cooperative, and simply handing out hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars to shady foreign groups and organizations without any enabling legislation, and likewise handing taxpayer money to his cronies at Solyndra [note that not one person is in jail, despite a missing half-billion dollars]; and Obama's arbitrarily replacing half of the legitimately elected GM Board of Directors, and the elected CEO of GM, and with half the country's GM dealerships then arbitrarily shut down by another Obama decree [specifically, the Republican dealership owners]; and with the nation's top cop flagrantly obstructing justice and being an accessory to murder, I fear all is lost.
Dr. Everett V. Scott
so the case falls into line with Citizens United, the result was foreseeable.
money is the mother's milk of politics according to Jesse Unruh. that means as more institutional money flows into elections, the voice of the average citizen dwindles.
I'm one of those average guys - I have a family, a mortgage, a dog and wore a uniform when I was younger. but my interests aren't represented by unions or corporations, or any other institution or PAC or superPAC or bundler, and the chances of my having any real influence in how my representative or senator votes or what bills he writes is slim to none and slim is leaving the building.
we're not talking about viewpoints and opinions, we're talking about the campaign contributions as the price of buying access to lawmakers, we're talking about who gets access and which special interests write I mean propose the language that makes up bills and regulations -- language which apparently no politician bothers reading.
and this isn't about freedom of speech either, although that's the guise it wears. its possible that someone involved in political campaigning at that level thinks this is about ensuring that different viewpoints get aired, or the marketplace of ideas works. but I doubt it.
unless your pockets are deep enough so that a politician's chief of staff returns your call (they have to be deeper before he takes your call), you don't have much influence either.
who wouldn't be in favor of free speech if you always have the loudest megaphone on the block?
there probably was a time when you could watch Capra's paen to the individual in Mr Smith Goes to Washington or admire Rockwell's Freedom of Speech, or read up on Jeffersonian democracy without rolling your eyes, but those days are passing if they're not already gone.
opinion here: American Tradition Partnership, Inc. v. Bullock
Are you equally unhappy with the unions ability to spend huge amounts of money to "buy" access? Is any level of "buying" access acceptable? That is do you only think that corporations have no right to political speech or do you apply the same standard to anyone and everyone who contributes money or labor to a political organization? Why should teachers or policemen be allowed to "buy" access but the guy who owns an ice cream store not be allowed?
I will offer a very simple change that would reduce the corruption involved in political donations: Require that all donations be made by individuals directly (no bundling or collections or coercion) and all donations must be after tax money (no tax deductions and no tax exempt organizations can contribute). And all donations must be made public within 24 hours, that is no secret donations.
I'm equally unhappy with institutional campaign contributions from left or right.
you use quotes around "buy" as if you have some doubts. who do you think writes the words that get codified in the U.S. Code or the Code of Fed. Regs? as in, who do think wrote the Obamanable Health Care Act? do you think its some honest, nonpartisan, dispassionate civil servant? because its not. proposed text comes from industry sources, unions, corporations, trade groups, very narrow interests groups who have bought access to the drafting process with (among other things) campaign donations so that their lawyers can write the specific, specialized language of Section 200003(a)(2)(I)(iii)(A)(cc) in the statute and some other byzantine language in the CFR regulation that implements the statute.
you own a bowling alley or are a union guy and you think you individually have some influence in what a congressman does? really? they'll be happy to gladhand you or kiss your baby, but if there's a dispute between you and Amalgamated Holding or you and Brotherhood o' Unions, who do you think gets his or her ear? nothing personal, its just business.
maybe your union or company represents everything you hold dear. but maybe it doesn't, if you're a minority or nonvoting shareholder, would never vote for a republican or democrat, are barred by religious ethics from ever supporting a pro-abortion politician, don't like tree huggers or, or, or.
I'm saying the election process has become deeply flawed in ways the founding fathers couldn't have foreseen. if there's a core image of the first amendment, its that working class guy in the Rockwell painting standing up at a town hall meeting, its not a "connected PAC" or a "non-connected PAC" or an "independent expenditure" Super PAC.
you have great ideas for reform, I wish they could pass muster under Citizens United.
Let me paraphrase:
The question presented is does the constitution prevent the states from infringing on the right of the people to keep and bear arms? There can be no serious doubt that it does. See U.S. Const., Art. VI, cl. 2. and Amendment II.
The authority the Court points to is that little provision in Article Six saying, “This Constitution . . . shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby.”
I'm not sure what point you're trying to make. the second amendment, like the first or any other constitutionally guaranteed right, is not absolute, never has been absolute, isn't treated by courts or congress as absolute.
states and the feebs routinely regulate gun ownership in a constitutional manner. the other side of the coin: gun ownership is routinely protected by the 2d and 14th amendments.
if you're trying to draw a comparison between how courts evaluate laws that touch first and second amendment issues, the particular balancing tests used to justify state intrusion are too different to be of any use as an analogy.