A major case under consideration this term by the Supreme Court is McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission, which, if the appellants are successful, will do for wealthy individuals what Citizens United v. Federal Elections Commission (2010) did for corporations (yes, and labor unions, if any): allow them to give essentially unlimited amounts of money to … Continue reading »
Why BP isn’t a criminal
The Justice Department just entered into the largest criminal settlement in U.S. history with the giant oil company BP. BP plead guilty to 14 criminal counts, including manslaughter, and agreed to pay $4 billion over the next five years. This is loony. Mind you, I’m appalled by the carelessness and indifference of the BP executives … Continue reading »
Who is Sheldon Adelson and what has Newt promised him?
Sheldon Adelson, the billionaire casino owner, is now the poster boy for what’s terribly wrong with our campaign-finance system. Adelson, you may recall, had, before the South Carolina Republican primary, donated $5 million to the pro-Gingrich Super Pac “Winning Our Future” — giving Newt a pile of money for negative advertising against Mitt Romney in … Continue reading »
Mitt, son of “Citizens United”
First, a confession. If Mitt Romney becomes president I’m partly to blame. Ten years ago I ran for the Democratic nomination for governor of Massachusetts — which would have given me the opportunity to whip Mitt Romney’s ass in the general election, I blew it. In the final week of the primary I was neck … Continue reading »
The Corporate Pledge of Allegiance
Despite what the Supreme Court and Mitt Romney say, corporations aren’t people. (I’ll believe they are when Georgia and Texas start executing them.) The Court thinks corporations have First Amendment rights to spend as much as they want on politics, and Romney (and most of his fellow Regressives) think they need lower taxes and fewer … Continue reading »
Whatever happened to K Street?
Yet another core sector of the American economy seems to be in trouble. After years of consistent growth, lobbying seems to be on the skids. According to figures compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, lobbying expenditures doubled from 2001 to 2008, reaching $3.3 billion that year. Expenditures in 2009 and 2010 stabilized at around … Continue reading »