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11.16 Scotland was first Industrialized Country to Run wholly on Wind in October

11.16 How pesticide bans can prevent tens of thousands of suicides a year [how many thousands more die early from eating pesticide-laced food?]

11.15  The long read:  The plastic backlash: what's behind our sudden rage – and will it make a difference? [the world wants to throw-up...]

11.15 Claws out: crab fishermen sue 30 oil firms over climate change [workers are waking-up...]

11.15 Trump administration to cut air pollution from heavy-duty trucks

11.14 Backed by Ocasio-Cortez, Youth Climate Activists Arrested in Pelosi's Office Demanding Democrats Embrace 'Green New Deal'

11.13 What would a smog-free city look like?

11.13 Global report highlights Australia’s renewables potential amid mixed signals for coal

11.13 Interior department whistleblower: Ryan Zinke hollowed out the agency

11.12  This Land is Your Land:  The Zinke effect: how the US interior department became a tool of industry [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.12 Planned Parenthood's new president warns of 'state of emergency' for women's health

11.11 Trump responds to worst fires in California’s history by threatening to withhold federal aid [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.11 Interior department sued for ‘secretive process’ in at-risk species assessment [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.11 Keystone XL pipeline: judge rules government 'jumped the gun' and orders halt [behaving ignorantly again...]

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Daily: FAIR Blog
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US Politics, Policy & 'Culture'

11.16 As 'Green New Deal' Demand Grows, Democrats Have Choice: Confront and Defeat Fossil Fuel Industry or Take Credit for 'Doomed' Planet [Two choices: Save life-on-Earth or help Republicans let it die?]

11.16 Trump’s latest interview shows a president who’s in way over his head

11.16 Why the political fight in Georgia is far from over

11.16 Florida judge sides with Democrats, giving thousands a second chance to fix their ballots

11.15 Democrats Won Big. Can They Go Bold, Too? [it's about suppressing the influence and leadership by Republican-like Democrats who counsel 'íncremental' (no) change, such as Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer, Hillary Clinton, Chuck Shumer and Joe Biden]

11.15 Pentagon Officials Forced to Make Fewer Public Appearances to Avoid Provoking Trump [...by revealing Trump's huuuge ignorance]

11.15 REPUBLICANS USED A BILL ABOUT WOLVES TO AVOID A VOTE ON YEMEN WAR [if there are 'defense industry' profits to be made—including congress-critter insider-trading—and political 'donations' to be had, we mustn't stop killing innocent civilians!]

11.15 Big Oil v the planet is the fight of our lives. Democrats must choose a side

11.14 The Real Florida Recount Fraud

11.14 Telling NRA #ThisIsOurLane, Doctors' Photos Show Blood-Soaked Reality of America's Gun Madness

11.14 At Freshman Orientation, Young and Growing Progressive Caucus Makes Clear It Will 'Fight Like Hell' for Bold Democratic Agenda

Justice Matters
High Crimes?

11.14 The Guardian view on Yemen’s misery: the west is complicit [WAR CRIMES]

Economics, Crony Capitalism

11.16 Amazon’s HQ2 Will Get a Tax Break Designed to Help the Poor [a Republican program that directly helps participating wealthy companies—but only helps workers if and when 'trickle-down' occurs.]

11.16 Trump doesn’t want to punish Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi. His new sanctions prove it. [George W. Bush made a similar immoral decision for the same oily reasons after 9-11, protecting Saudi defense contracts while facilitating the slaughter of poorer Arab "terrorists" in the region.]

11.15 The Earth is in a death spiral. It will take radical action to save us [fossil fuel burning, un-recyclable plastic production/use and methane gas release must cease ASAP.]

11.14 Brexit: May tells her cabinet, this is the deal – now back me

International & Futurism

11.15 Cuba to pull doctors out of Brazil after President-elect Bolsonaro comments [terms must be negotiated for fairness to Cuba's health professionals without disruption of healthcare for Brazil's poor]

11.14 'Appalling' Khashoggi audio shocked Saudi intelligence – Erdogan [Exposing a psychopath?]

11.14 Israel and Hamas launch hundreds of attacks in Gaza clash

11.14 Mueller seeking more details on Nigel Farage, key Russia inquiry target says

11.13 Austin's Fix for Homelessness: Tiny Houses, and Lots of Neighbors

11.13 Portugal Dared to Cast Aside Austerity. It’s Having a Major Revival.

11.13 Caravan marks one month on the road: ‘We keep on going, laughing or crying’

11.13 Letter Shows Einstein’s Prescient Concerns About ‘Dark Times’ in Germany

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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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