[FoRK] Justice Defends Ruling on Finance

Damien Morton dmorton at bitfurnace.com
Thu Feb 4 11:47:53 PST 2010

On Fri, Feb 5, 2010 at 5:18 AM, Stephen Williams <sdw at lig.net> wrote:

> Of course we want and need to prevent corrupt self-reinforcement of
> government.  Is it really the case that we can only control this at the
> Pavlovian level of money->speech->votes?  Isn't that what the First
> Amendment specifically allows and trusts: Listener beware - survival of the
> fittest memes.  If you are worried about the prospect of sheeple, then work
> to cure people of sheepleness.  If you want an advantage in influencing
> sheeple, then shame on you.
The First Amendment doesnt say anything about money, and was framed in a day
and age where communications was fragmented and population relatively small.
 It simply wasn't possible to get a message across to the entire population,
let alone do so 24 hours a day.

Here's a way of drawing the line: make a distinction between a corporation
formed for the purposes of speech and one formed for the purposes of
business. A corporation formed for the purposes of speech needs a democratic
charter and gets certain tax advantages advantageous to political speech,
while a corporation formed for the purposes of business needs no democratic
charter, and gets certain tax advantages directed at business and tax
penalties aimed at political speech.

Corporations are islands of fascism in a democractic system - they
certainly aren't democracies, and that's where the problem lies.

Allowing powerful non-democratic institutions to participate in a democracy
is suicide, pure and simple.

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