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02.12 Biggest offshore windfarm to start UK supply this week

02.12 Scientists Are Totally Rethinking Animal Cognition

02.12 Politicians are complicit in the killing of our insects – we will be next

02.11 'People Shouldn't Be Going Bankrupt and Dying': Nationwide Week of Action Aims to Build Mass Movement Behind Medicare for All [Corporate control of government and media must be limited to allow efficient programs for the public good]

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02.09 The potato solution: how the Guardian switched to biodegradable packaging [Non-recyclable products should be illegal]

02.08 Stripping Social Programs Leads to Lower Life Expectancy

02.08 UK's Met Office Warns Global Temperature Could Soar Beyond 1.5°C Threshold Within Five Years

02.08 Australia can meet Paris targets if government doesn't hinder progress, report claims

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02.15 Bernie Sanders Wants to Expand Social Security

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02.15 Jayapal Says Medicare for All Bill Coming in Two Weeks as Expert Calls Plan 'Astonishingly Strong' [Corporate control of government and media must be limited to allow efficient programs for the public good]

02.15 To Be Crystal Clear: 'Medicare for All' Does Not Mean 'Medicare for Some'

02.14 Eugene V. Debs and the Endurance of Socialism [28:59 audio to listen via another window as you browse]

02.14 Pentagon Fears Climate Crisis, w/ Billions in Damage to US Bases & Societal Upheaval [In maniacally twisted capitalist countries inconvenient truths are ignored or harshly ridiculed, and Trump's stupid Wall obsession dominates the news instead.]

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02.14 American moms: let's stop feeling guilty and start getting mad

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02.13 What is Democratic Socialism and Does America Need to be “Protected” from Sanders and Ocasio-Cortez ?

02.13 'We Will Be That Lantern on the Shore': Ocasio-Cortez, Pressley Rally With TPS Holders Outside Trump White House [Empathy and fairness are scarce when your President is a psychopath]

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02.12 Climate and economic risks 'threaten 2008-style systemic collapse' [Willfull ignorance of Trump, Republicans, corporate-media and corporate-Democrats is steadfast, if not worsening]

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International & Futurism

02.15 Who Is Really A Socialist? [Who is really a Republican, etc.?]

02.15 In Germany, the Green New Deal Actually Works

02.14 House passes bill to end US support for Saudi war in Yemen [Congress does something good again!]

02.14 Millions Flowed From Venezuelan Oil Firm to Small Bulgarian Bank [Transactions like Manafort performed for Trump. Which Venezuelan political leader is likely behind this—Maduro or Trump-supported Guaidó?]

02.13 As Macron Prepares New Repressive Measures, Yellow Vests and Red Unions Strike Together

02.13 Harrison Ford: leaders who deny climate change are 'on the wrong side of history'

02.13 Nationalist strongmen are bent on controlling women’s bodies

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  U.S. Supreme Court Nails Down the Coffin of Democracy

EDITORIAL:

U.S. Supreme Court Nails Down the Coffin of Democracy

January 22, 2010

The majority of U.S. Supreme Court justices see no difference between citizens and corporations when it comes to the Constitutional right of free speech, and they did nothing to change the legal precedent that equates "speech" and "money." With their ruling in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, the 5:4 majority of Justices has cleared the decks for unrestricted corporate campaign donations and political advertising. Individual U.S. citizens can no longer have a hope of competing in political influence with cash-rich organizations, corporations and unions.

To build their case, the Supreme Court relies on wrong-headed precedents it set during the robber baron age of this country, when the Court was the handmaiden for powerful corporate interests. It perverted the intent of the Civil War-era Constitutional Amendments designed to free and empower former (male) slaves, giving those persons short shrift while elevating corporations to "citizenship" status and according them the rights and privileges thereof. From that point on, corporations ran roughshod over this nation until they were brought to heel (somewhat, anyway) following the Great Depression.

Prior to the robber baron era, corporate charters in the U.S. were granted by states for particular purposes for limited time periods, and the corporations served at the pleasure of the states. They have come to be permitted to exist in perpetuity, extending their activities to as broad a scope as they wish, and expanding (or contracting) pretty much at will. Today's corporations have no patriotism or loyalty; they operate all over the world, avoiding taxes and regulations wherever they can. Corporations that operate within the U.S. but are registered elsewhere (Panama or Bermuda, anyone?) surely cannot be considered "citizens" of the U.S., yet the Supreme Court does not differentiate among these footloose entities when according them U.S. citizens' rights. In the past year alone, so-called American corporations relocated to Bermuda (ex. Accenture) and Switzerland (ex. Transocean) and Dubai (ex. Kellogg Brown & Root). How then can the U.S. Supreme Court deem corporate "citizenship" across the board to be equal to that of individual citizens, thereby granting them all the rights without the responsibilities inherent in citizenship? Worse, the U.S. Supreme Court, with this decision, is freeing corporations to use their "speech" to influence not only the public's buying habits, but their voting decisions, thereby granting them de jure control over our democracy. Bad enough when it was de facto control; now their outsized influence is blessed by the highest court in the land.

As individual citizens, let us encourage the Senators and Representatives who comprehend that this U.S. Supreme Court decision must be overturned by the Legislative Branch through strict laws regulating corporate entities' influence on our imperiled democracy. And let us also send a powerful message of outrage to the Corporatist Senators and Congresspersons who are celebrating this legal decision. Samuel Adams, Patrick Henry, George Washington, Thomas Paine, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams,Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and Alexander Hamilton, all adherents of Republicanism as the desired form of government of these United States, would be even more angry than we are at the perversion of the meaning of "Republican" by those calling themselves Republicans in Congress today.



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This story was published on January 22, 2010.

 

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