The American Dark Age (2016-2020) An archived history of the worst President ever

I think it is wholly important for Clinton when she gets elected to overturn the Citizens United ruling, as it clearly has just injected elections since the ruling, with bad money.

I don’t agree with that ruling either, but that the President can’t overturn it is a fundamental aspect of our system of government. I know you mean that she appoints a Justice who will side against it, but even that doesn’t mean it will be overturned. The Supreme Court would have to accept a similar case and rule on that as a complete reversal which is very rare. Over time they will likely chip away at it but it is very unpredictable.

The real route to reform is through Congress passing actual legislation which continues to be a job that they are uninterested in.

Of all the recent big rulings, I think Citizens United stands on the firmest constitutional ground. The Voting Rights act ruling and Heller could certainly be overturned fairly easily.

I agree it should be overturned, but it should be through the Constitutional amendment process. I know that’s a lot harder, but this sort of thing should be difficult. Free speech is extremely important and this needs to be done the right way, IMO.

Well there is also plenty of cases, and potential for cases, this year which could bring such a case before the Supreme Court to allow them to reverse that decision. The brazen nature of actions in North Carolina and such certainly open the door for the right attorney to file I’d imagine.

Yeah, while many may not like it, the Citizen’s United ruling is pretty damn solidly supported by the 1st amendment. It is exceptionally difficult to overturn that ruling without significantly diminishing our freedom of speech and expression.

Try to write a constitutional amendment that would overturn Citizens United, but could not be used by a Republican Congress to outlaw all Planned Parenthood ads.

Yeah, Citizen’s united is an example of while free speech is criticially important, it will also inevitably lead to things you don’t like.

If you can donate money to a political cause, then everyone else needs to be able to. Trying to place limits on that donation ends up being very difficult to balance with the fact that virtually any expression can have an impact on politics. News coverage has an impact, and can be biased. If I make a sign and put it in my yard, then what would stop someone who owns a huge building in downtown manhattan from putting a sign on his building that millions of people see every day? Or what if someone else paid him to put up a sign? If you’re going to limit an ad for a political candidate, why not other ads?

It just becomes a huge mess, and while the slivery slope argument is often overused, in this case I think it’s definitely a real cause for worry.


And before anyone chimes in that “corporations are not people”, ask yourself this: If nonprofit corporations had no role in politics, then who exactly would nag politicians to do something about, say, climate change? And why would a politician listen to that individual, instead of David Koch?

Calling us a ‘Democracy’ is just shorthand. I think we all know that we don’t personally drop pottery shards into a box to vote on each law as it goes by.

I still say it says something very alarming about our electorate that a two bit con-man like Trump can attain the nomination of a major party, even a ‘broken’ one. The Whigs went the way of the dodo without nominating P.T. Barnum en route.

Put another way – the Weimar Republic was functioning ‘exactly as it should,’ i.e. reflecting the will of the electorate, by allowing the Reichstag to be stacked with members of the NSDAP.

In the end, the only true bulwark against demagogues even in a ‘constitutional republic’ is the people themselves. And for that to work, it helps if the people themselves aren’t idiots.

I think there’s a similar justification for ruling against Citizen’s United as for reinstating the Voting Rights act fully. Basically, the idea behind Citizen’s United is that restricting what someone can spend money to say is the same as restricting what that person can say, and thus is a free speech violation. But if me spending money to say something prevents 10 other people from saying what they want to say (and it does - there’s a limited amount of advertising bandwidth, and the price is based on demand, right?) then this clearly falls into a category of speech that should be regulated, and I don’t really think it’s all that controversial. Just like I can’t use my free speech to stand next to the voting booth and tell you who to vote for, I shouldn’t be able to use it to buy up the ad space you could have used.

Not really. They nominated Zachary Taylor, who was kind of Trump-esque.

I don’t know much about Taylor (except that he was a successful general in the Mexican War and died early in office) but was he really ‘Trump-esque’ beyond having populist appeal?

We already have the 14th amendment…

You could make the same argument for newspapers. There’s a limited number of trees and the more people who want to print a newspaper drive up the price of wood pulp for everyone.

I don’t think this argument holds up to scrutiny. There isn’t really a saturation of political marketing at this point. That is, no one is buying up literally all of the airtime in any market, as far as I know. Political ads are buying airtime in competition with every other type of advertising. Purchasing that time is not preventing anyone else from doing so.

Again, you are kind of handwaving away the very real issues which come from extension of what you are suggesting, in that in order to actually make a truly “level” playing field in this regard, you are essentially requiring that the government completely regulate essentially all speech, since there is no clear line which divides such things from other expression.

What about someone like Rupert Murdoch? He owns a ton of media outlets. How can you limit HIS expression? Even if you somehow limited his expression of overt political advocacy, you could never regulate more nuanced forms of bias. Thus, extremely powerful media owners end up having their influence magnified, while you artificially limit the speech of everyone else.

And this doesn’t even touch upon the fact that the government itself cannot really be trusted to make decisions about what types of expression are ok, and what isn’t. That’s exactly why we have the 1st amendment, to prevent the government from regulating it.

Yes, you can, trees or no trees. Media outlets have a similarly far-reaching effect on speech, because they are capable of amplifying or dampening all speech in modern society. Are you saying you think the current system of media run by corporations trying to get eyeballs and clicks is a paragon of free speech protection?

Kind of… he was a popular figure, but wasn’t really a whig at all. He didn’t endorse their political platform, and indeed, largely just didn’t give a crap about politics. This ended up feeding the problems that eventually manifested as the civil war, because he didn’t really provide any executive leadership while Congress fell into disarray.

He wasn’t Trump-esque in terms of being a monster… But he was so in terms of not being a Whig, as Trump is not really a Republican… and in terms of his political disinterest hurting the country overall.

I got this.

So the short answer is: basically yes. The longer answer I plot out here

and the source where I cribbed parts of my writeup from:

It’s long, but very good.