Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Molly Ivins recently pointed out that campaign finance and corporate lobbying are bad enough. Now, the right plans to aim $200 million in ads to convince us to screw ourselves.
Also of note is what appears to be a new dimension in how monied special interests buy legislation through Congress. We are all familiar with both corporate lobbyists and the system of legalized bribery known as "campaign finance." But now comes an unholy tsunami of corporate money aimed not at politicians but at ourselves. Over $200 million will be spent to convince us that we should privatize Social Security and change the rules of class-action lawsuits. In other words, they want to make us in favor of our own screwing by corporate special interests.

This has been done before, but not at this incredible level. When the insurance industry mounted a $10 million campaign in 1993 to defeat the Clinton health insurance plan (remember Harry and Louise?), no one had ever seen that kind of money spent to kill a single bill before. And now, The Washington Post reports, "Corporate America, the financial services industry, conservative think tanks, much of the Washington trade association community, the Republican Party, and GOP lobbyists and consultants are prepared to spend $200 million or more to influence the outcome of two of the toughest legislative fights in recent memory."

Their money frustrates me. Two hundred mill is a drop in the bucket for them, but a tough sum for us to raise to fight them.
Click here to read Molly's column.


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