Democrats once again push to repeal 1st amendment


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A party of fascists: A group of Democratic Senators today re-introduced their 2014 constitutional amendment that would repeal the first amendment of the Bill of Rights.

The language from 2014:

To advance democratic self-government and political equality, and to protect the integrity of government and the electoral process, Congress and the States may regulate and set reasonable limits on the raising and spending of money by candidates and others to influence elections.

Essentially, this amendment eliminates the ban set by the first amendment that states that “Congress shall make no law … abridging the freedom of speech.”

If you have always been a registered Democratic, you need to reassess that position. This party has nothing to do with that political organization from the past. It has morphed into a fascist and oppressive bunch of totalitarians who pose a serious threat to everyone’s freedom.

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20 comments

  • Cotour

    Speaking of which:

    https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/441908-california-senate-passes-bill-that-would-keep-trump-off-2020-ballot

    Unconstitutional, and as usual the fraudulent Democrat party attempts to fashion a system that only they can win. If you can’t beat em then just cheat or manipulate the system to your strengths and to hell with everything else.

    Politics, the dirtiest, filthiest most deadly game that humans play.

  • Joe

    Limits should not be placed on an individual. If they want to drop a million of their own dollars into a candidate, fine by me. The only issue I have is a corporation. An entity that is really beholden to no one except the law, that can last forever essentially, and abuses its relationship with customers, stockholders, etc should not be able to spend on campaigns. The owners can. The executives can. But the company itself. Should not be happening.

  • commodude

    Joe, that would take a constitutional amendment to change, as SCOTUS has ruled multiple times on corporate personhood.

    As a corporation has similar rights to a person, then they can “speak” in the form of campaign donations.

    I personally find that chain of rulings badly flawed, however, SCOTUS is nothing if not reliant on precedent.

  • Dick Eagleson

    Joe,

    I wouldn’t have any particular problem with that so long as it also applied to all other potentially immortal collective entities such as foundations and unions but that is obviously not what the Democrats pushing this amendment have in mind. So I’m even more inclined not to thus limit any of them.

    Corporations, in particular, are often attacked politically – Wal Mart, Hobby Lobby and Chick-Fil-A come to mind – and should have a right to fight back, as corporations. Unions, especially the public employee unions, pretty much exist to funnel millions into Democratic campaigns. Foundations, despite being technically forbidden to spend money politicking owing to their tax-exempt status, seem to find myriad ways to game around that putative restriction.

    This proposed amendment is obviously the latest attempt by Democrats to overthrow the Citizens United decision of a few years back that campaign contribution limits are actually restrictions on speech – which they are. Democrats, naturally, also want to see to it that any subsequent legislated limits on such expenditure would selectively disadvantage the right, in general, and the Republican Party in particular.

    As much as many of them would seem to like to, the Democrats, even when they’re in power, can’t simply outlaw their political opposition so they go for indirect approaches like this amendment. It’s fortunate the thing stands zero chance even of emerging from the Congress, never mind being signed by the current President or subsequently approved by the necessary super-majority of states. Still, it ought to be taken as a earnest of intent as to what the Democrats would like to do should they ever regain significant power.

    Anyone who votes for a Democrat is voting to put himself in chains.

  • Col Beausabre

    “Anyone who votes for a Democrat is voting to put himself in chains.”

    Very close to Frederick Hayek. Read “The Road to Serfdom” – a seminal work in the founding of modern conservatism and freedom

  • wayne

    Dick–
    Good stuff.

    The American Economy and the End Laissez-Faire: 1870 to World War II:
    Lecture 3, “The Decline of Laissez-Faire”
    Murray N. Rothbard Fall of 1986.
    https://youtu.be/0HAaDSZQl-8
    2:04:24

  • wayne

    The Corporation and the Free Market
    Peter G. Klein
    Mises University December 2010
    https://youtu.be/dMGv2r05wu8
    1:00:10

  • wayne

    Richard Epstein on Citizens United
    (excerpt)
    National Constitution Center 2014
    https://youtu.be/a-YzRg2_oO4
    3:33

  • wayne

    The whole thing….

    “The Classical Liberal Constitution”
    Richard Epstein
    National Constitution Center
    https://youtu.be/qHOWwJ-7SdI
    1:14:51

  • Diane Wilson

    Trying to post an image here, because it says so much more than words. Boris Kustodiev’s painting, “The Bolshevik,” at http://www.rusartist.org/rusartistorg/wprusart/uploads/2013/02/kustodiev_bolshevik.jpg .

  • wayne

    Diane-
    Good stuff!

  • wayne

    …a brief animated interlude…

    The Simpsons (intro)
    >Russian Art-Film Version
    July 2019
    https://youtu.be/q1u7XZ9c8fI
    1:10

  • Col Beausabre

    Joe, Actually you’re not far from a point that Milton Friedman espoused. Corporations shouldn’t be making donations to >anybody< Democrats, Republicans, the Salvation Army, CAIR, United Way, Red Cross, BLM, My Alma Mater – you name it. The money belongs to the shareholders, not the firm and not its officers. Pass on the profits to the shareholders in the form of dividends, let them decide where and how much to give.
    I've always liked that position. I also know its got about as much chance as flapping my arms will get me to the moon. Sigh.

  • Joe

    Col,

    Exactly. It has little chance of succeeding due to a lot of compounded precedent but it is the right way to go. If a corporation is a legal entity separate from the owners, then it has legal duties to perform. A corporation cannot vote so it should not have the ability to influence votes. Let the shareholders do that work. If they like the company’s position, they can donate their own money. If the corporate execs want to donate, use their own money. Too many times corps want it both ways: the ability to dictate their morals to employees, shareholders, customers, etc but then hide behind the corp veil when things hit the fan. Pick one or the other but you should not get both.

  • mike shupp

    Hmmm…. Awkward issue. The Founding Fathers certainly understood the ills of what we’d today call Crony Capitalism, but the size and possible influence of today’s corporations would have been beyond their comprehension (you can catch a glimpse of this in Charles Dickens’ novels, fifty years or more after the Revolutionary War, where stores in Scotland with two brothers as proprietors are described as so large as to be known across the British Isles). They never had a clue as to what 10 million Americans hearing “This is Edward R. Murrow reporting from London” or 30 million watching “The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite” might do to politics.

    And the notion of hundreds of slaved communication systems (“bots”) sending tens of thousands of messages every second to transmit political messages or simply confuse recipients would have been beyond their wildest imagination.

    We aren’t in an era in which untrammeled communication works as those who framed the First Amendment thought it would, and maybe some tampering with it OUGHT to be allowed. Here’s a suggestion: Facebook and Google Mail and maybe even blogs and non-WWW linkages should charge 1 cent before transmitting any message or some class of messages, but recipients would have the option of refunding the cost. If you want to send a funny photoshopped image of Hilary Clinton looking at her emails to ten of your pals, it’d cost you a dime up front, and maybe five of them would pay a penny for the laugh. No big deal! Send the same picture to a hundred thousand of your close personal friends, ten times a day, and …. it might make you a less partisan soul.

  • Edward

    Col Beausabre wrote: “Pass on the profits to the shareholders in the form of dividends, let them decide where and how much to give.

    That sounds absolutely wonderful. Hurrah.

    Unless the shareholders of companies under political attack, such as Wal Mart, Hobby Lobby, and Chick-Fil-A, are passive and do not pay close enough attention to the politics — or are mostly other companies, such as mutual funds, retirement funds, etc. In that case, bad legislation will get passed without input from the victim companies, those companies do poorly, and the shareholders, retirees, pensioners lose a lot of money that they did not think they would lose. What government agency do they go to in order to get their money back?

    The whole idea of the Board of Directors is to act on behalf of the shareholders, and if a bill in a legislature goes against the company, then it is the duty of the Board to let the legislature know the consequences of such a bill — on behalf of the shareholders. If charitable or political donations work for the benefit of the company, then these are also for the benefit of shareholders. It has long been acknowledged that companies should be charitable with a portion their shareholders’ profits.

    It used to be that widows and orphans could safely invest in utilities, but now that utilities have come under attack, their shareholders are at greater risk of losing their investments than they probably can afford. I feel sorry for the former investors of Pacific Gas and Electric, because they suffered due to extremely poor legislative actions. The legislators aren’t even smart enough to realize that they are the cause of PG&E’s downfall. But then, what do you expect from those who gave us a requirement for certain sized fleets of electric cars without making sure that there would be sufficient power generation or distribution to charge those fleets? How about those policy-driven rolling-blackouts, two decades back?

    What a pack of idiots legislators are.

    How necessary it is for companies to inform these idiots of the consequences of their idiotic decisions, and to attempt to get intelligent legislators elected to office.

  • commodude

    To what extreme do we take corporate personhood?

    Do we extend the prohibitions against Bills of Attainder to corporations? That would make antitrust law an interesting battleground.

    There are many issues around free speech, it’s an utter minefield when you start looking at unintended consequences, and the SCOTUS decisions around free speech have just made things more difficult in terms of regulating corporations. PG&E wasn’t damaged by the Federal government, they were damaged by the State of California.

  • Col Beausabre

    “The whole idea of the Board of Directors is to act on behalf of the shareholders”

    Which is known as “Agency Theory” and was demolished in the article “A Theory of Large Managerial Firms” in the June 1965 issue of the Journal of Political Economy. Go here

    https://www.journals.uchicago.edu/doi/abs/10.1086/259012?journalCode=jpe

    and request a copy

    Essentially what the author claims is that modern firms are so large, so diffuse and with owners with such differing priorities that they are run for the benefit of management. “Trust us. We know better than you what is going on and what to do”

  • wayne

    A conversation with Ronald H. Coase
    Richard Epstein/ Liberty Fund
    https://youtu.be/7L1qvLVrSzU
    1:02:15

  • Edward

    Col Beausabre wrote: “Which is known as “Agency Theory” and was demolished in the article “A Theory of Large Managerial Firms” in the June 1965 issue of the Journal of Political Economy.

    That is just an (old) argument to eliminate corporations, unions, and any other form of representative organization (e.g. republican forms of government) due to poor representation, not an argument that corporations must stand mute, that the First Amendment be repealed.

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