The recent ruling by the Supreme Court, our alleged "experts" on Consitutional Law, essentially sold elections to Big Business, and the very rich, including the billionaire criminals on Wall Street. These include those responsible for the Economic Meltdown, prompting President G.W. Bush to use taxpayer money to bail out Global and National financial institutions who otherwise would have collapsed, as did Lehman Brothers.
In their decision regarding "Citizen's United," The Supreme Court opened the flood gates for big money to buy the media when it comes to political elections. In case there were any doubts about the results of this decision, the dramatic results were certainly illustrated in almost ALL of the GOP Primaries.
I'd like to think Romney would have won these primaries anyhow, as -- IMHO -- he was the best of a sorry lot, with the possible exception of Ron Paul. But most political analysts noted that Romney's Super Pac "fear ads" trumped and squashed his opponents in most of the swing states.
The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) has brilliantly responded with a proposal requiring the media to post the cost of any political ads, so voters can actually SEE how much their votes cost...how vulnerable the public is to political ads that skew and twist the facts -- sometimes outright lying -- to get the desired candidates elected. It may upset the media. BUT, as we have seen with the recent scandal over the power and abuse of Rupert Murdock's media empire, since the Supreme Court won't protect the individual voters from being manipulated by the media, perhaps the FCC offers the only solution.
Here's an excerpt from Amicus Curiae, The blog for Professor Corcos' classes at LSU Law Center:
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is actively promoting a proposal that would require local television stations to post information about political advertising on an FCC central website. Local television stations are currently required to maintain public files at their offices for inspection by members of the public. The files normally include information about programming, staffing, and spending on political advertisements.
The problem is that few people know about the filing requirement and therefore very few people access the files.
The FCC proposal seeks to provide broader access to the public by requiring the television stations to upload the files to an FCC-operated website. Critics assert that the change would be an unnecessary financial burden for local stations and does not clearly benefit the public.
However, advocates for the proposal claim that the requirement will make it easier to access public information and provides greater transparency about the political advertisements during political campaigns. In addition, the FCC notes that initial uploading of the files will cost less than $1,000 for most television stations and will save television stations money in the long run by avoiding printing and storage costs. The FCC is expected to vote on the proposal at an April 27 meeting and it seems likely that the measure will pass."
I sure hope it does pass! It won't cost the taxpayes a penny. And I think that the Media can survive making public the cost of political ads, while keeping a separate pay scale for their "cash cow" of commercial ads. In fact, since the Supreme Court has essentially sold elections to the highest bidder, the Media could play a vital role in keeping the individual voters informed about just how much control the Super Pacs have over our sources of information. As such, THE MEDIA SHOULD BE PROUD to be part of doing their part to return the United States to being a government of elected officials "of the people, by the people and for the people."
"...both Republican and Democratic political strategists are using super-PACs to circumvent a federal campaign finance system that was intended to limit individual contributions and require full disclosure....Two U.S. Supreme Court decisions paved the way for super PACs. The first, Citizens United vs. Federal Election Commission, overturned a long-standing ban on corporate and union treasury funds being used in politics. The second, SpeechNow.org vs. Federal Election Commission, ruled that limiting donations to political committees was unconstitutional.
Super PACs pose many problems, but none is greater than their potential for magnifying the influence or power of an individual or a group of individuals and thereby diminishing the influence of ordinary Americans."
To quote a courageous TV political commentator, Edward R. Murrow, who had the courage to speak out against the horrors perpetrated by the then-powerful Senator Joseph McCarthy, "Good Night and Good Luck." Let's hope the morning comes soon, along with the luck. And possibly some elections that cater to informed individuals, and not the negative/twisted/un-truthful/fear-based/hidden agenda media campaigns I see coming from the Super Pacs.