Friday, April 04, 2014

1313 Dancing in the Dark

Well, maybe not in the dark, but in the dark in a parallel universe. Talking here about the Supreme Court and its ruling removing spending caps for political campaigns.


The ruling doesn’t mean that you can give a million to this one and a million to that.  There still are limits on that, at least for now. It means you can expand the number of candidates to whom you give each of your millions.


Wait, you say, you don’t have millions, let alone millions to give?  Well, that’s a problem. But there are plenty of people who do. And the Good Justices say if they can’t use their money to buy whom they please, the law is restricting their right to free speech.


Free speech can be pretty expensive these days.


Of course in a normally comprised Supreme Court there would be counterbalancing principles.  Like equal protection under the law.  Like one person, one vote.


It would be wrong to infer from this that there is a Supreme Court “pad” as there were in many police precincts -- and may still be in some.  That’s where Leading Public Figures and Simple Businessmen would make contributions to the welfare of the officers by providing envelopes stuffed with cash.


The sad part about this court decision is that the five majority yokels didn’t need bribes.  They think that way.


So while money doesn’t directly take away your right to vote, it limits your choices to Tweedle Dee or Tweedle Dum who are chosen by party activists under the swoon of fake principles and restricted to candidates who have enough money to shove their message down your throat with such frequency and such vigor that you think you’re getting an actual say in who rules you.


Corporations are people.  People can give as much as they please.  Actual people can do the same.


So … here’s a brazen and blatant advance for the idea that this country is ruled not by ideas, but by cash.


And maybe it’s not the Supreme Court dancing in the dark after all.  


Maybe it’s us.


Meantime, spend on.  After all, you earned it.  


Well… didn’t you?


Shrapnel:


--Major backer Liberty Media has dumped all but a sliver of its investment in Barnes and Noble as the bookseller continues its long slow slide into the actual cellar. Got a Nook reader?  Think about a replacement.


--David Letterman is getting out while the getting’s good.  He’s announced he’ll retire when his contract ends in 2015.  Maybe he and Leno, who were once friends and may be again, can do a two man traveling show.  Maybe Fallon and Kimmel are just too much to deal with.


When Letterman jumped to CBS in 1993, he took long-time NBC staff announcer Bill Wendell with him.  Wendell retired in 1995 and was replaced by Alan Kalter.  Wendell was a coworker and so is Kalter and it’s sad to see the latter’s cushy gig vanish after a mere 20 years.


I’m Wes Richards.  My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
Please address comments to wesrichards@gmail.com

© WJR 2014

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