Friday, February 26, 2010

As long as you claim it's "independent", it's ethical:

In the news:
The House ethics committee ruled Friday that seven lawmakers who steered hundreds of millions of dollars in largely no-bid contracts to clients of a lobbying firm had not violated any rules or laws by also collecting large campaign donations from those contractors.

In a 305-page report, the ethics committee declared that lawmakers are free to raise campaign money from the very companies they are benefiting so long as the deciding factors in granting those "earmarks" are "criteria independent" of the contributions.
And you can always find a meritorious criteria that's "independent". So it's now clearly established that money is what governs the nation. Not that it wasn't before, but these days it's becoming harder to pretend otherwise.

I wonder what James Madison would say about this. He studied various historical forms of government before helping craft the Constitution. But was money a factor in those days of old?


Just think of the all the payback and pay-off opportunities that the recent Supreme Court ruling adds. Why, a corporation could buy up all the ad time in a district for their candidate and a little quid pro quo. Nobody would even know that somebody else was running.

As for money and politics, my reading of Roman history leads me to believe that a lot of denarii changed hands.

By Blogger gmoke, at 2/26/2010 10:39 PM  

I make a similar prediction. The effect of loosening campaign rules will drive up the cost of mainstream commercial airtime leading up to elections. It will for candidates to spend more money on campaign ads, and the candidates may find themselves unable to outbid the third party competition.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2/27/2010 1:11 PM  

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