Occupy the First Amendment?

So it seems the Occupy movement has gotten around to the courts. Specifically, the Supreme Court and the Citizen’s United decision.

At least some of the protesters are looking for a constitutional amendment to undo the Citizen’s United decision (I’m not sure why they would protest at the courts for that, but there it is). I doubt such an amendment is possible, but I am reasonably sure it is a bad idea.

I am no fan of the quantities of money that flow into politics. But I have to believe the answer is transparency. When an ad is on TV, or in the mailbox or wherever, the party paying for the ad should be prominently displayed. Complete information on where the money came from should be easily found on line. When an individual is the source of money, the individual’s  job/business needs to be identified.

Money does corrupt, but when the whole transaction is open to scrutiny, the voters can choose what corruption they want to vote for. Consumers can choose what businesses they do or do not want to patronize.

Maybe that would not work. But I would rather try it first before we start carving out exceptions to the First Amendment.

Hat tip: Ann Althouse

The Trilateral Commission

The Trilateral Commission was created in 1973.  I was eighteen.  It could not have taken long for some people to be talking about how the elites controlled the world and we, the people, were just given enough to keep us complacent, and that the Trilateral Commission existed for that purpose.  Or some such line of thought.  I feel like I have been hearing such talk my entire life.

In my memory this theory was usually put forth by a clean cut, wire rim wearing, pot smoking socialist…but maybe I’m just making that up.  I don’t even know.

At any rate, I was not too inclined to accept the idea that the world was controlled by elites (though now I suspect it is…though I have no idea if the Trilateral Commission has anything to do with it) and even if it was, I looked around and thought to myself  “This isn’t such a bad deal.”

Sure, there were economic difficulties and there was no end of injustices going on, but life in the US for the vast majority of people was pretty damn good.  If the elites wanted to control the world and this is how they allowed the masses to live so they could do that, well, I was fine with it.   Maybe the alternative was how the masses have lived throughout history and I was sure nobody wanted that.

Assuming that those clean cut, wire rim wearing, pot smoking socialists were correct, you have to give credit to those elites.  Running the world can’t be all that easy and, on balance, they did a fair job of it for quite awhile.

I’m guessing the next generation of elites has not been up to the task.  Things have gone rotten here in the US.   Even though the recession has ended and corporations are making lots of money, nothing has trickled down.  People are out of work or afraid of becoming out of work after ten or twenty years of income stagflation and the value of homes plummeting.   Which brings us to the Occupy protests.

The most interesting thing about the Occupy protests is watching everybody try to determine who is actually protesting and what do they want, and what does it mean.  Probably no one answer to any of those questions.

Well, maybe to the “what does it mean” question.

It means that the national economy no longer functions as it once did.  The masses, who once had it pretty good, are now struggling.  To listen to some of what is said in Washington, the elites still have no idea what the problem is.

It is simple, return us to the good old days when the elites controlled the world and allowed the masses to live in relative and increasing prosperity.   Is it too much to ask?