Thursday, November 17, 2011 | 1:25pm
[RANT] While Corporate America Has No Place In Politics, You Can’t Get Rid Of The Roaches
Russell Simmons Proposes Legislation Barring Corporations From Funding Political Campaigns. But is it laughable?
Russell Simmons has picked up the Occupy Wall Street movement and put a pair of Timbs on it. Maybach Faux Pas aside, Simmons has been putting into action what protestors have only managed to talk about in Zucotti Park. On Tuesday, the Hip Hop Godfather threw his weight around up in Boston by helping to introduce the early workings of a constitutional amendment that he hopes would keep Corporate America from interfering in American politics.
The law would ban private donations from federal elections, leaving candidates for the U.S. Congress and White House to finance their campaigns with public funds. Sounds difficult? Well its like in sports when athletes complain about the wind, the rims or the dimensions of the outfield fences, its the same for both teams.
He went on to criticize New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg for evicting Occupy Wall Street protestors from Zuccotti Park, the home base of the Occupy movement.
“The timing with all the attacks, the illegal attacks by Mayor Bloomberg on the protesters and the ignoring of a court order to allow them back in. Breaking the law, a one percenter,” Simmons told a Reporter.
Be careful Russell. I think he often forgets he’s part of that one percent.
“Only one percent of the one percent don’t want this country to be better and that was an example of one,” he explained. “He broke the law.”
Speaking more specifically about his plan, Simmons explained how Corporate America has had an adverse effect on the prosperity of 99 percent of America.
“I’m not saying capitalism is bad, [that] corporations shouldn’t sit around and conspire on how to take the money out of people’s pockets — they should do that, that’s their job, turn a profit to their investors, but it should not be a job to pay off politicians,” Simmons said. “That is the core of demands of all of the occupations.”
Here’s a more detailed look at his proposed Ammendment:
Section 1. All elections for President and members of the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate shall be publicly financed. No political contributions shall be permitted to any federal candidate, from any other source, including the candidate. No political expenditures shall be permitted in support of any federal candidate, or in opposition to any federal candidate, from any other source, including the candidate. Nothing in this Section shall be construed to abridge the freedom of the press.
Section 2. The Congress shall, by statute, provide limitations on the amounts and timing of the expenditures of such public funds and provide criminal penalties for any violation of this section.
Section 3. The Congress shall have the power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
Section 4. This article shall be inoperative unless it is ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by conventions in the several States, as provided in the Constitution.
I love the idea. Its not some revolutionary idea however. Editing the Constitution however is unfortunately almost laughable. For better or worse its probably the hardest piece of legislature we have in this country to Ammend and for very good reason. The way the system is currently constructed allows for too much special interest and money to play into the well-being, health, housing, career, education etc. of an individual.
We say our elected officials are the “voice of the people” but it couldn’t be further from the truth. They become candidates because of the unsaid agreements and backdoor deals and promises. Then given support by those entities in the form of votes. They’re ELECTED by the people and stay in office by making sure those same certain unnamed people keep making money. That’s nothing new. But I worry that preventing the currently transparent translucent system of allowing Corporate America to contribute to campaign finances will create a political prohibition where the bootlegging of elections and American Politics will be at an all time high.
To think that big business would just fade into the night and accept that they no longer pull the puppet strings of Congress isn’t realistic. Its shocking to me to witness the audacity that some companies have to believe that they should sacrifice the health of our people and planet in favor of relaxed environmental guidelines that would have them operate at a higher profit…and actually lobby you for it with commercials on CNN like you’re a fool. *Off the soapbox*