I talk to many people on a daily basis about what is happening around us in this country. These people are conservative, liberal and anywhere in between. Many state they are ‘independent’ of political affiliation. However, many others are trapped in imposed partisan politics. I find that these people, no matter how much they understand a point or agree on the subject matter, will still fall back on their political Party rhetoric and talking points. This prevents us from coming together to fight the real enemy, and that enemy has become the corruption in government itself. This political Party addiction keeps us busy bickering amongst ourselves, often times even when we agree, because many people find it impossible to get past the partisan conditioning.
This is very much like being in an abusive relationship. It’s a political abusive relationship.
How many of you have ever been in an abusive relationship?
Do you currently adhere to a political party — more than just voting, but actually adhering to one? You know what I’m talking about — phone banking, making and distributing signs, public advocacy, maybe even more. Maybe you’re a precinct captain, one of the folks who “runs” a county-level political organization, or perhaps you’re involved at the state or even national levels.
If so, have you ever stopped to consider whether or not you’re actually part of an abusive relationship?
What defines an abusive relationship?
And the lies that go with it.
Let me guess — you’re going to tell me that you believe that your relationship with your political party embodies what you believe in and how you live. That it embodies your values, your core expectations, and what you want from government.
Are you being honest with yourself or are you practicing co-dependency?
If we ever hope to move past the corruption, misrepresentation and outright fraud of our current government structure, people’s blind devotion to Party politics must end.
A great example of what I’m talking about here happened relatively recently with the United States Supreme Court opinion issued in the case Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission 558 U.S. 310 (2010). Almost immediately people lined up along Party lines with their opinions on this decision. The Democrats/liberals decried this as a victory for corporate personhood and blamed the alleged ‘conservative makeup’ of the Supreme Court. Even President Obama couldn’t resist taking a dig at the Supreme Court during his State of the Union address, which further cemented this false premise in the minds of the American Public. For their part the Republicans/conservatives didn’t seem to understand the Opinion any better and appeared to be evenly split between agreeing with the Democrats and just plain being confused.
Here’s the problem: Citizens United had absolutely NOTHING to do with ‘corporate personhood.’ It had to do with selective restriction on free speech protected under the 1st Amendment. Citizens United sought to restore a more equal balance between corporate money spent on advertising and the ability of individuals to pool resources to help amplify their voices to the equivalent of what corporate money could do. Citizens United stemmed back to the 2002 Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (commonly known as the McCain–Feingold Act or “BCRA”), which Citizens United sought to overturn in part. McCain-Feingold was a decision that imposed something completely opposite of its advertised goal. Instead of limiting corporate money in politics, it gave more protection to corporate money at the direct expense of individuals! This was an Act sponsored equally, by Republicans AND Democrats and it was (and still is to some extent) terrible law that infringed on free speech of individuals while protecting the corporate monopoly on political advertising. So what we had here was a united effort between both Parties to give more preference to corporations over individuals by lying to the American people to convince them it was the exact opposite. Abuse? I’d say so. (For future reference, always be skeptical of anything labeled ‘bi-partisan.’ You KNOW it’s not going to be good. They only team up when they really want to defraud the American people.)
Curious. So then we have Citizens United, a case which defended the 1st Amendment for individuals, against a terrible piece of legislation, sponsored by both Democrats and Republicans. Yet all we heard about was how Citizens United was a terrible blow for individuals and a win for corporations. Wait. Wut? Confused yet? Don’t be.
Simply, the Democrats disliked this Opinion because the moving party, Citizens United (the organization) wanted to air an advertisement critical of Hillary Clinton. During the course of the matter winding its way through the courts, the Democrats as a Party, sought to fight the case by tying the widely-despised corporate personhood precedent with the conservatives behind the Hillary Clinton ad. Corporate personhood is something that evokes extremely strong, passionate reactions in people and was a very easy way to coalesce opposition to Citizens United. It was that simple. If the moving party (plaintiff) to this litigation had been a traditional liberal-embraced cause, such as perhaps an environmental group or a civil rights group that wanted to air an advertisement critical of a Republican official, there wouldn’t have been a negative word spoken by Democrats. Likewise though, we all would have been subjected to Republicans trying to fight this case by using the precise tactics that the Democrats did by also tying the case to corporate personhood.
Do you see how this works? They play you. They get you to be unable to move past the partisanship and Party rhetoric to see the REAL issue. The REAL issue here was a severe infringement of individual rights over corporate protections. This should be an issue upon which ALL Americans could easily agree; there was no Party politics involved here other than the ad that the plaintiff wanted to air; the content of said ad was entirely irrelevant to the case. The inability of individuals to compete effectively against corporate money was imposed with McCain-Feingold despite it being widely advertised as being the complete opposite: a protection for individuals against corporations. Everyone bought the lie, and then to make it worse, when the damage was undone, everyone bought the lie that Citizens United was damaging to individuals and re-confirmed corporate personhood.
Just so our readers will NEVER fall for this specific scam again, if you want to see the personhood status of corporations removed, the ONLY way that ever gets done (no matter what anyone tells you), is to bring a case before the Supreme Court to revisit Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad - 118 U.S. 394 (1886) and have it overturned. Yes, corporations were granted personhood back in 1886! It is that old of a precedent. Never in our history has anyone ever attempted to revisit this case, yet we hear about ‘corporate personhood’ frequently.
So here we are. Trapped in our abusive political relationships, which in turn, prevent us from having civil discourse with others of opposing political Parties. Yet, we all complain of similar things on a daily basis: Of the creeping advancement of a too-powerful government and the resulting loss of freedoms. We lament the loss of the rule of law, which is no longer applied equally to everyone, but instead exempts special classes of people, and targets others. Our government ‘representatives’ facilitate this discrimination by catering to the more than 35,000 corporate lobbyists that descend on Washington DC on a daily basis. All three political Parties have failed on an epic scale and have become only about promotion of themselves and their members. So, now that you understand what the results of this abusive relationship with your political Party looks like: What do we do about it?
You can start by reviewing the Federationist Platform. It’s time that the American people had their OWN lobbyists and it is past time to use our government’s biased, preferential laws against them.
Then please vote in our Poll. (registration is free, but required to post and vote)