Merrill » Supreme Court ruling

This new supreme court corporate donations ruling: here’s the sane solution

Posted January 22nd, 2010
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Now that this new Supreme Court ruling has opened the door officially to unlimited campaign control on the part of giant corporations,  it seems like it will no longer make  sense  to pretend that the “people” holding our nation’s highest political offices are actually not just figure heads for consortiums of international corporations. It’s easy for us to get confused and think of them as “people” (as in individuals, human beings) because they do peopley kinds of things like get haircuts, go on vacations, have sex with people they are not married to,etc. But the truth is that the only path to truly understanding the behavior of these so-called “people” depends on being able to see through the glossy veneer of their indecipherable yammering to the lobbyists and corporate interests who are really at their core.

When some senator you have never heard of gives an impassioned speech about the first amendment, is he really just a mouthpiece for ClearChannel? When a majority of them support the invasion of a struggling impoverished country in the name of freedom everywhere is it because they are seeking real estate to build a Home Depot? Understanding this stuff is like watching a foreign movie without subtitles.

Usually it isn’t my job to propose solutions to these kinds of problems, but I think I have a way to try and minimize the confusion we are all having trying differentiate truth from lies. Maybe it would make everything clearer if we just let the corporations run for office.

I know It sounds kind of harsh at first, but it might not be any worse than our present method for selecting presidential candidates which is essentially to cast a Presidential sit com with a lovable reformed rake character as the romantic lead and a whimsical- but blunt curmudgeon- next-door-neighbor-and-best-friend as his side kick . This old system has worked very well telegenically for decades , but as with all sit-com actors, you never can be sure who these guys are in real life.

With my new plan perhaps the Republicans might create a ticket that would offer Rockwell Manufacturing for President; tough on terrorists (The B1 bomber) but still forward thinking and cutting edge: (Rocketdyne! The Space Shuttle! The semiconductor!) Then perhaps balance the ticket with the friendlier and more gregarious sounding Beatrice Foods for Vice President: Progressive, (Beatrice sounds like it could be a woman) yet traditional (Orville Redenbacher) and concered with domestic security ( Blue Bonnet Margerine , Chef Boy Ardee!). Also, since Beatrice foods is a division of ConAgra, the minority vote would be assured.(Rosarita Refried Beans! Hebrew National! LaChoy! Swiss Miss!)

In opposition the Democrats might run the very relevant to the twenty first century Presidential candidate of IBM; big on leadership (consultants in 170 countries!) and stability (a continuous history since the 19th century!) then add to that the friendlier more youthful and up-to-date Apple for Vice President. (I-tunes! Ipod ! Mac!!)

It makes sense in other ways too. Witch hunts concerning mysterious campaign donors would become a thing of the past. And although many people are inherently suspicious of corporations, all Americans love logos . So between tee shirt giveaways and Nascar races there’d be no more need for those old fashioned empty speeches and slanderous ad campaigns. Instead it will all just boil down to which tee shirt do you want? The one with the lovable Chef Boy Ar Dee astride that cool B1 Bomber? Or the one with that rocking silhouetted iPOD lady dancing atop the more graphically tasteful two-tone IBM letters?

Never again will there be a problem getting the young people out to vote. Imagine the enthusiasm for an election that pitted Mountain Dew against Sprite. Or the Hummer against KFC.

Okay, I know it isn’t a perfect system, but it makes as much sense as what goes on now.  And it certainly is a good match for the new supreme court ruling. Plus it’s completely up front. If the Bush administration had simply run as the Pennzoil/ Halliburton ticket, no one would have had the slightest doubt about what was going to happen to the country in the next eight years.