I had planned to write a piece for HuffPost about having serious hang time with all the corporations now that thanks to the Supreme Court they've achieved the full Pinocchio-like state of (cue magical gliss) "person-hood." I was going to treat the Corps like "bros" I was picking up for a night of beers and pool and make some jokes about Goldman Sachs claiming he was broke and asking me to spot him a few billion and then me catching him floating a billion to the bartender as a bonus for pouring a kick-ass Jägerbomb. I was then going to joke about Exxon getting a separate check where he only paid half the taxes I did on my bill. And then CIGNA is allowed to collude with all other pool players about how to beat me. Finally a fight would break out and all the Corps would hightail it out of the bar leaving me to get my ass kicked because the Corps were under no obligation to join any wars other than for their own profit. And as they run down the street I hear them laughing and joking in Chinese, German, and twenty other different languages....
But the recent Supreme Court decision on Citizens United v. FEC is so assaultive and destructive towards our country and the welfare of our democracy that any kind of cleverness feels pointless. Sort of like doing a sly political cartoon about being kicked in the head. What the Supreme Court -- specifically Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, Alito and Kennedy -- has done, is nothing short of a violent coup for the corporations to seize control of our government. There's no violence yet, but it will come in the form of many more profit-driven corporate wars in the molds of Vietnam and Iraq and the jailing of millions more non-violent offenders to fuel the corporate built and run prisons. Not to mention dramatic rises in the crime rate as the middle class completely disappears.
What (I'll write their names again, because they should not be forgotten) Roberts, Thomas, Scalia, Alito and Kennedy are guilty of is treason. There is no other name for it. Using very flimsy law, they have betrayed the very idea of our nation, a nation founded on checks and balances as a way to dilute concentrated power. Because time and time again it has corrupted and distorted. We saw the devastating effects of big business's hold on government with the robber barons and the Great Depression in the early 20th century, but the corporations reconstituted and waited with an inhuman silver-dude-from-Terminator-2-like patience. After years of bad headlines and unflattering news reports the corporations bought the headlines and news reports and from that moment on, deprived of real information, their opposition (us!) shrank and shriveled. And best of all, an entire nation turned into bored gossips, concerned about who was cheating on who and who got plastic surgery (Hint: Season 6 of Survivor!). From that moment on, anyone who talked about what was going on became a crazy unpatriotic liberal or worse yet, not a lot of fun.
So it's fitting that what happened last week played about fifth in the news cycle, well behind the Leno/Conan soap opera and way behind the NFL playoffs.
And just in case you think I'm overreacting, read the dissenting opinion from SCOTUS.
The only remaining question is, does it really end like this?
Or can all the "right wingers" and "left wingers" or, as the corporations call us both, "suckers" wake up?
As for now there are a few things that can be done:
1. Tell everyone you know about this decision and how it will affect us. Word of mouth and the internet are the only press we have left. (Okay, and Stewart, Moyers and Rachel Maddow).
2. Sign Congressman Grayson's petition
3. Pay attention to the millions and billions about to be set loose on our elections. The network news won't do it for you.
Benito Mussolini created the word "fascism." He defined it as "the merging of the state and the corporation." He also said a more accurate word would be "corporatism." This was the definition in Webster's up until 1987 when a corporation bought Webster's and changed it to exclude any mention of corporations.
Needless to say, there were no news stories covering this. But I think that same year Richard Dawson stopped hosting Family Feud and Van Halen switched from David Lee Roth to Sammy Hagar. Remember that? I do.