Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Supreme Court's Partisanship

By Robert Parry
January 27, 2010

The U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark ruling that lets corporations spend all they want to punish political enemies and reward political friends is a reminder that the panel’s Republican majority has become one more potent weapon in the Right’s already intimidating arsenal.

Read on.


James Young said...

Whine, whine, whine.

It would really be refreshing if you far Lefties were as committed to the First Amendment that you pretend to revere.

Nat Parry said...

"It would really be refreshing if you far Lefties were as committed to the First Amendment that you pretend to revere."

James, I've read your sentence a few times and have decided that it is structurally unsound and basically nonsense. Disregarding how illogical it is for a moment (Consortiumnews is not far left -- if you want far left check out infoshop.org, wsws.org or pslweb.org), what bothers me most is that the two clauses of the sentence do not agree with each other. You say, "It would really be refreshing if you far Lefties were as committed to the First Amendment that you pretend to revere" but that just doesn't make sense. Why not say "It would really be refreshing if you far Lefties were as committed as you say you are"? That would at least make sense, albeit factually challenged.

James Young said...

Yeah; that was bad editing. I started out saying one thing, and then decided to say another.

But "Consortiumnews is not far left"? Yeah; right. Liars don't like to be called "liars," either. Doesn't make it untrue.

It should read "It would really be refreshing if you far Lefties were committed to the First Amendment that you pretend to revere." Equally valid would be "It would really be refreshing if you far Lefties were as committed to the First Amendment as you pretend to be."

Now, would you care to deal with the substance?

Nat Parry said...

Okay, substance: Money does not equal speech. By allowing unlimited amounts of corporate cash into the electoral process, the Supreme Court has negated the freedom of speech of people, who, by and large do not have access to the kind of money that corporations have, and therefore do not have the sort of access to lawmakers that corporations have.

Sure, we are all still "free" to say whatever we want, but in Washington, DC, money talks. There are 37,000 lobbyists registered in DC, which is 69 for every member of the House and Senate. Doesn't something about that strike you as fundamentally flawed? Who do you think lawmakers pay attention to, the vocal citizen or the campaign contributor? The answer is obvious, and what the Court has done is to further entrench this unequal system. Now corporate lobbyists have even more ammunition. In effect, they can blackmail lawmakers into voting any way they want, simply by saying "If you don't vote our way, we will spend 10 million dollars on defeating you." This essentially negates the value of free speech, rendering political demonstrations, letter-writing campaigns and grassroots lobbying efforts essentially useless.

While claiming to enforce the First Amendment, what the Court has actually done is to strip freedom of speech of its very meaning. It's quite similar to how the partisan Supreme Court cited the Constitution's equal protection clause (intended to ensure African Americans the right to vote and equal protection under the law) as justification for halting the vote count in Florida in 2000. They twist the Constitution to fit whatever their pre-determined political agenda may be.

And about Consortiumnews being on the "far left," well all I can say is that only in a country with politics as skewed to the right as the USA would Consortiumnews be considered "far left." That's a rather sad commentary on the state of American journalism.

Anonymous said...

Amusing to see Mr Young -- like the typical Fox acolyte -- switch between a call for 'substance' (though never offering any of his own, not even the phony 'facts' that his conservative friends are so fond of - see "Rush Limbaugh's Reign of Error" by FAIR.org as a classic expose) and his usual sarcasm that's supposed to pass for intelligent commentary of some sort? Calling the ConsortiumNews website - - run by a former reporter for Newsweek - - a 'far Leftie' viewpoint is demonstrative of his bombast. True far left websites are plentiful - - wsws.org, the monthlyreview.org, etc, etc - - if he would care to educate himself and make some informed commentary, it might make his presence more than that of an Internet troll.

Peter said...

The Constitution is a living document.

Left-wing progressives embrace this approach to "interpretation" of the Constitution.

Every new piece of legislation written by the Supreme Tier of the Third Branch of the Legislature (fka Supreme Court of the United States) will not be in harmony with the progressives agenda.

You win some (Roe v Wade, Kelo v City of New London, United States v Sprague), you lose some (Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission, Bush v Gore, DC gun ban).

This is the risk in promoting, advocating and supporting the living document approach to writing new legislation as a front for interpretation of the Constitution.

As Doris Day would sing, "Que Sera, Sera".

John L.Opperman said...

Setting aside the nonsensecal stuff of the loonies here who claim anyone to the left of Attila the Hun is a commie terrorist, the SCOTUS-5 should have been impeached by discarding the vote and awarding the presidency to that C-minus gwb. Now they are ripe for impeachment over their latest criminality. Of course, Bill Clinton should have been impeach, but not for blow jobs but his other multiplicity of crimes against the people...Nafta, Welfare "Reform", etc.
if only this were a democratic republic..
~John L.