Dollar Democracy excerpts:
|From Chapter 9 (p.246):
With Liberty and Justice for All: Taking Dollars Out of Democracy; With Paul Wellstone’s Example, Clean Money Elections, and Move To Amend
We will not realize President Lincoln’s vision of government “of the people, by the people, and for the people”, until we drastically reduce or fully eliminate the heavy influence of private, corporate, and special interest money in American Politics and Government. This heavy influence of private, corporate and special interest money in American Politics and Government is grounded in four major U.S. Supreme Court decisions: Southern Pacific Railroad v. Santa Clara County (1886); Buckley v. Valeo (1976); Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission (2010); and McCutcheon v. Federal Election Commission (2014). These four Supreme Court decisions, for which there is no basis in the U.S. Constitution or Declaration of Independence, have created the modern day American / multi-national corporation.
The very nature and actions of this post-1886 mulitnational corporation, whose allegiance is not to the American people, but only to its major stockholders and CEOs, has undermined American democracy and is turning the American Dream into the American Nightmare for the bottom 99% of Americans. …
… Those of us who believe in Clean Money Elections feel that campaigns for public office should not be financed by wealthy private interests. This is not a radical new idea. Just over 100 years ago, President Teddy Roosevelt and other Progressive Era reformers advocated publicly financed elections. Our argument goes like this: when we, the people in a democracy, elect public officials such as state legislators, members of Congress, state governors, and U.S. presidents, we are electing leaders who are charged with making laws and policies in the public interest, also known as the common good, or “general Welfare” (the words in the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution). We should not be electing leaders whose campaigns for public office are heavily funded by wealthy private special interests to whom they will owe favors once they are in office: favors such as corporate tax breaks and subsidies, as well as financial and environmental deregulation, all of which generally harm the well-being of the vast majority of Americans. ….
Move To Amend Coalition’s “We the People (28th) Amendment” to the U.S. Constitution
Corporations Are Not People, and Money Is Not Speech Under the First Amendment
MTA Coalition proceeds to quote Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens, January, 2010, “… corporations have no consciences, no beliefs, no feelings, no thoughts, no desires. Corporations help structure and facilitate the activities of human beings, to be sure, and their ‘personhood’ often serves as a useful legal fiction. But they are not themselves members of “We the People” by whom and for whom our Constitution was established.”
The Move to Amend Coalition has been working diligently for four years to raise awareness and build support for the adoption of this constitutional amendment. It then collected hundreds of thousands of signatures across the country in support of it. Its members have started a move to get state legislators to pledge their support for it. And they have been successful in getting some county and city governments, most recently the Los Angeles City Council, to vote to endorse the proposed amendment. As they themselves have stated, “Amending the Constitution will take nothing less than an organized, disciplined, mass movement of millions.”(https://movetoamend.org). Those who are interested in laying the structural foundation for building a democracy of, by, and for the people should visit their most informative and comprehensive website: https://movetoamend.org. …
… As mentioned earlier, the Move To Amend Coalition’s 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution would end corporate personhood and declare that money spent to influence election campaigns is not speech protected under the 1st Amendment. Of the three approaches to ending the pernicious influence of “Dollar Democracy” in our society, discussed in this chapter, the most challenging and comprehensive solution for building a deep and real democracy is the adoption of the We the People (28th) Amendment to our U.S. Constitution, which requires nothing less than a 21st Century social movement led by the people of the United States of America. “When the people lead, the leaders will follow.” (Gandhi). The Move to Amend Coalition and its allies are doing just that. …
by Michael Douglas Carlin | American News Service | Book Review
Many questions torment America in the dark night of its soul, but its seems Corporate CEO pay emerges as one of this year’s hottest trending issues. At the midway point to the next election, this and other hotly contested issues are shackled and tackled in Professor Peter Mathews’ must-read new bookDollar Democracy: with Liberty and Justice for Some; How to Reclaim the American Dream for All.
“Despite the country’s dire state of affairs, Mathews remains optimistic, and closes the opus with some viable plan for the people to reclaim the American Dream. The literary equivalent of a one-man million-man march for equality and justice for every U.S. citizen.” Review by Kam Williams, Syndicated columnist
Read this book about Corporations and their pampered and panderingpolitical offspring. Act Accordingly. Our country is in the midst of an uncivil war between the alarmingly powerful, determined to destroy the middle class and the intentionally left behind.
Professor Peter Mathews’ book serves as a counterpoint to those who luxuriate in denying the reality of America’s rapidly changing social landscape. We are dangerously close to cementing a permanent American catastrophe. Mathews boldly and unapologetically asks questions and gives solutions that the media/propaganda machine purposefully ignore. He closes the tome with a checklist of high crimes and misdemeanors and an urgent call to conscience and about what needs to be done next.
Determining our actions today can move us towards either a stronger, more positive future, or a future shrouded in fear, poverty, war. This book is written as a primer for people of all ages and all classes who want answers.
Professor Mathews speaks in a voice that resounds with clarity and conviction as he examines the direct and intentional outcome of separate policies that were advocated, starting with the Reagan administration, to intentionally deceive and destroy the middle class. In a full frontal attack by the corporate manipulators Mathews details how the middle class has become superfluous to the very rich and why various policies were deliberately created to eliminate them. Their defining characteristic is dirty, scorched-earth partisanship carried out regardless of cost. Conservatives are anxious again to finish first – with the big prize-monopoly control of the American government, and the power to turn their ideology into the law of the land. Quite a bargain at any price. People want answers, but our compromised leaders can’t provide them because bold actions carry too much political risk. Meanwhile the corporations are booming and running roughshod over us. They are operating in their own time and space continuum that is increasingly supranational – disconnected from local concerns and their home markets.
Mathews reveals that there are fat corporate balance sheets ready to create jobs and prosperity – just not in America. While corporations feign heartfelt pledges of allegiance to the U.S., they still must depend on the government to protect intellectual property and keep waterways safe so they can deliver their made-in-China supplies to us. This formidable book brings to light of day important new information regarding how the Corporate manipulators are destroying our country.
Dollar Democracy is a riveting read, the text, defiantly disturbing. Mathews’ writing style passionately grounded in integrity and reality. The conclusions of his detective work fit together like sword and scabbard. He gives his reader so much juicy information, a veritable tsunami of corporate skullduggery. He doesn’t mince words and he doesn’t hold back when identifying the cauldrons of chaos they have created. He exposes these and others among the secret corporate power elite as the coolly vicious orchestrators of wars and grand-scale theft. Mathews also details the mind-boggling sums of money their CEO’s reap from the proceeds of their crony capitalism. And what’s interesting is that the fortunes of corporations are totally delinked from the fortunes of the rest of the world. The 2008 financial crisis devastated hundreds of millions of people, but the following year Wall Street revenue hit US$60 billion, a historic high, thanks in large part to the massive injection of public money they received. Average wages in developed countries have dropped since the crisis, but the median pay for CEOs in the US now exceeds $10 million. A CEO now makes about 357 times more than the average worker’s salary in the U.S., up from 181 times in 2009 and 40 times in 1980. The divide between the have-nots and have-yachts is getting worse really, really fast. In 1980, the top 1 percent controlled about 8 percent of U.S. national income. The bottom 50 percent shared about 18 percent. Today the top 1 percent capture about 20 percent; the bottom 50 percent, just 12 percent.
But the problem isn’t that we have inequality. Some inequality is intrinsic to any high-functioning capitalist economy. The problem is that inequality is at historically high levels and getting worse every day. Our country is rapidly becoming less a capitalist society and more a feudal society. Unless our policies change dramatically, the middle class will disappear, and we will be back to late 18th-century France. Before the revolution.
Crony politicians have made decisions that led to outsourcing good middle class jobs, dismantling our public education system kindergarten through college and university; deteriorating health care that leaves Americans in danger, sick and broke; the destroying of our environment and lives; the polluting of our food through deregulation of big agribusiness, pesticide use and the proliferation of Genetically Modified (GMO) foods; the crash of Wall Street and the Great Recession from which the bottom 99% of Americans have not yet recovered; while the super wealthy are doing better than ever.
Mind-blowing from the beginning, Mathews’ book takes an even more astounding contemporary turn when he declares their efforts over the past thirty years have succeeded. The middle class democracy that made America great is in seemingly irreversible decline. Mathews clearly shows how the Corporations and their crony politicians have hoodwinked America by separating speech and thought.
But wait, Mathew is a political pugilist, ready to lob a whole arsenal of answers on how we can reverse these trends and return middle-class democracy. He proposes comprehensive, bold, visionary solutions to restore America’s formidable democracy and make this country great again.
Can the truth change the course of history? If the truth can heal, then this book is a prescription for accountability. It is a must-read for anyone who believes that following our constitution must be mandatory for the pursuit of good government and that our once vibrant and powerful democracy is not for sale to the highest bidder and the too-clever-for-word machinations of the Corporate Pollution Politics.
Dollar Democracy is really a blueprint for Americans that have had enough. And that means 99% of us.