Libya Free Speech and Romney

Yesterday on the NPR/WBUR talk show “On Point” Christopher Dickey, Paris Bureau Chief and Middle East Regional Editor for Newsweek/Daily Beast, made a comment worth sharing. The Supreme Court ruled that shouting fire in a crowded theater is not permitted under the first amendment. With the creation of the internet and You Tube the world has become the theater.

We in this country have had free speech since the founding of our nation. Therefore, when some crazy guy says some crazy things we tend to yawn and go on with our lives. This is not true in the Mideast. They are just now being introduced to the freedoms we have had forever. We need to be sensitive to this even as Mitt Romney tries to gain political advantage of this tragedy.

I guess I should recognize that crazy people will say crazy things. Hopefully most voters will recognize Romney’s lack of sensitivity to the situation and put him in a position where he can freely go on vacation again with his dog strapped to the roof of the car without secret service intrusions.

Free Speech & Oligopolies

When the Supreme Court ruled that money equals speech 35 years ago, it was responding to forces of technology and economics reshaping American politics that made it much more expensive to run a campaign. While ruling that public financing and limits on contributions are valid ways to limit donors’ undue influence, it struck down candidate, campaign and independent spending limits.
Now the court’s conservative majority is again reshaping politics, ruling that what matters most for money and speech is their “fair market” impact. The result will be closer scrutiny of public financing, while enabling even more rampant spending by wealthy candidates.New York Times, April 12,2011

We are in drastic times and it requires drastic action. We need an amendment to the constitution to bring back free speech. It is not free if how much you can speak depends on how much money you have.
Interference with markets by oligopolies destroys “free markets”. Now it seems that these oligopolies also can destroy our free speech by buying votes to assure the longevity of their control.
No wonder our politicians are not doing anything about it. They are making too much money off the scam.