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Miscellaneous meanderings and philosophical ramblings. The title from a spiral notebook I used to jot down my thoughts on religion and other matters some years ago. I like to write, think and express my views on various issues. Robust discussion is welcome.

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I will not submit. I will not surrender.
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Wednesday, December 27, 2006

And I thought McCain was a twit

So called, campaign finance reform pushed my Senator John McCain and made into law, really didn't do much positive and only threatened free speech. We now have another politician trying to build on that idiocy. I'm a bit late with this but it is important and should be recognized as dangerous by everyone, despite their political positions. Perhaps, imagining Bush Chimpy McHitlerburton being behind this, will help certain deranged individuals see the light on this matter before it's too late.

Pelosi preparing new shackles for free speech

Mark Tapscott, The Examiner

WASHINGTON - Incoming House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has cooked up with Public Citizen’s Joan Claybrook a “lobbying reform” that actually protects rich special interests and activists millionaires while clamping new shackles on citizens’ First Amendment rights to petition Congress and speak their minds.

Pelosi tried earlier this year to move H.R. 4682, the “Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2006,” which is now cited by Public Citizen’s Web site as the vehicle it is helping the incoming speaker to craft for the new Congress. The proposal Claybrook is helping craft for introduction early in 2007 is expected to be essentially the same bill Pelosi put forth this year.

Sure, give it a snazzy title to hide it's actual intent. Orwell would be proud, proud of the number of revolutions he accomplished in his grave that is.

The key provision of the 2006 bill was its redefinition of grassroots lobbying to include small citizens groups whose messages about Congress and public policy issues are directed toward the general public, according to attorneys for the Free Speech Coalition.

All informational and educational materials produced by such groups would have to be registered and reported on a quarterly basis. Failure to report would result in severe civil penalties (likely followed soon by criminal penalties as well).

Do people really want to see how far certain judges or future political fights will take such things?

The Pelosi-Claybrook proposal builds on the restrictions on free speech created by campaign finance reform measures like McCain-Feingold that bar criticism of congressional incumbents for 30 days prior to a primary and 60 days before a general election.

And leviathan moves ever onward, devouring all in it's path. Be sure to read it all and spread the news around. Hopefully, some will overcome their BDS long enough to help put a stop to this. McCain was bad enough with his bill, that unfortunately, the Supreme Court upheld. Although, a recent court ruling has done much to strip that law of it's power as covered here by Powerline.

A three-judge federal court panel took another bite out of McCain-Feingold today, ruling unconstitutional, as applied to the case before it, that provision of the statute that prohibits corporations and others from engaging in “electioneering communications," defined as...

The article concludes by describing the ad in question and then having this to say:

Any statute that makes that ad illegal is, it seems to me, plainly unconstitutional, regardless of who paid for it or how many days before an election it ran. It is quite remarkable that such a law could have been passed by Congress and signed by the President.

We shouldn't be content to rely solely on the courts though, as even when we agree with them, we may be giving ground to premises that will come back to haunt us later, as I've noted here. That's also how we got McCain's short-sighted bill into law in the first place. The President played chicken and, in this case, he lost. Perhaps it was politically savvy to do so, but the results have been disastrous and may soon get worse.

Government does a poor enough job with even mundane tasks. We should ourselves be savvy on how much we allow the government to define something as important as free speech. Should we acquiesce much more control of this right to agents of government, we should not be so surprised when we are someday more than merely annoyed when we hear the words, this is the government and we're here to help.


Filed under: NewsPolitics

Trackposted to: Perri Nelson's Website, Is It Just Me?, The Random Yak, Don Surber, Adam's Blog, Madman Returns, Stuck On Stupid, The Amboy Times, The Bullwinkle Blog, Pursuing Holiness, 123 Beta, Rightwing Guy, The HILL Chronicles, third world county, Woman Honor Thyself, Wake Up America, The Crazy Rants of Samantha Burns, The World According to Carl, The Right Nation, Blue Star Chronicles, Pirate's Cove, Planck's Constant, The Pink Flamingo, and High Desert Wanderer, thanks to Linkfest Haven Deluxe.

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