We need a populist political movement in the United States, powered in part by the social media tools now at our fingertips, to curb the influence of corporations in our government, economy, and lives. The organization Change Congress is poised to be a key catalyst in this movement, and deserves our time as well as financial support. I’ve written about these issues previously. See my posts from February 2008, “The Corporation documentary: A big eye opener” as well as my April 2009 post, “The Tyranny of Oil, The Danger of Unregulated Markets, Power, and Populism” for more background. Last week’s Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision by the U.S. Supreme Court provides more evidence why this populist movement is needed. So does the alleged conflict of interest / ethics violation situation involving Senator Albert Kookesh of Alaska and the Sealaska Corporation. The continued prevalence of legislative earmarks in federal legislation is unquestionably intolerable. Our federal governance system is broken in several ways, but the good news is that our Constitution provides remedies and means to address problems. This is a formidable task, but one to which we all must rise as concerned voters and responsible citizens.
As Larry Lessig says in the following 2.5 minute video, the merits of decisions, not money, should drive politics in our nation.
The fundamental issue we must address first, before we can elect and keep the leaders we desperately need and deserve who are not owned by corporate funders and other financiers, is campaign finance. I agree with Dr. Lessig and the Change Congress movement that we need to support passage of the bipartisan Fair Elections Now Act. In this 8 minute video, shared last week by Will Richardson, Dr. Lessig explains why. Connect the dots. Take action. Be the change.
Think it was easy for anti-trust legislation to pass in the U.S. Congress in the late 1880s? Of course not! It passed, however, because of populist support for strong leaders with a vision for doing what is right for our nation, rather than simply what is in the interests of big business.
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