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Dollarocracy Action 3-Pack

Program #MCCR-NICJ001-COBD001-BOJO002.

3 CDs

First program: Robert McChesney & John Nichols - Dollarocracy

Dollarocracy: a system of government where private wealth determines political outcomes. Sound at all familiar? The corruption bred by boatloads of cash contaminates and pollutes our entire political process. So-called reforms won’t cure the ailment. Radical surgery is required. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. understood this well when he counseled, “Timid supplications for justice will not solve the problem. We’ve got to massively confront the power structure.” Washington is Lobbystan. The thousands of influence peddlars pretty much get what they want for their paymasters. Elections matter little. That’s because, as McChesney and Nichols say, “Powerful interests—freed to, in effect, buy elections, set the rules of engagement. Those interests so dominate politics that the squabbling of Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, is a sideshow to the great theater of plutocracy and plunder.” Democracy has been sold down the river. 

Second program: David Cobb - A Declaration to Amend

Concerned about the influence of money in politics? You should be. Politics looks more and more like an auction with seats going to the candidate who raises the most money. The so-called level playing field is now heavily tilted toward the wealthy. Democracy is fast becoming a cashocracy ruled by plutocrats who control the purse strings. The January 2010 Supreme Court Citizens United decision–money equals free speech– has opened the proverbial floodgates. The ruling gave a green light to them that’s got to give as many greenbacks as they want to buy elections. Corporations and rich fat cats can now give unlimited amounts of money funneled through super PACs to the politician of their choice and much of it is secret. A concerted grassroots effort, Move to Amend, is being made to pass a constitutional amendment to reverse Citizens United. 

Third program: John Bonifaz - Fighting Corporate Personhood

Democracy, rule of the people, is in the ICU. The pulse, of the system of governance, begun in Athens, is fading. The Supreme Court's Citizens United decision declaring corporations are people and money is free speech may be the deathblow. But galvanized citizens are saying, Wait a second. The game is not over yet. Activists trying to reverse Citizens United were greatly encouraged by the December 30, 2011 Montana Supreme Court decision to uphold that state's century-old ban on corporate money in elections. The Montana ruling said, "With the infusion of unlimited corporate money in support of or opposition to a targeted candidate, the average citizen candidate would be unable to compete against the corporate-sponsored candidate, and Montana citizens, who for over 100 years have made their modest election contributions meaningfully count would be effectively shut out of the process."

Speaker(s):

John Nichols

John Nichols is Washington correspondent for The Nation. A contributing writer for The Progressive, he is also the associate editor of the Capital Times, the daily newspaper in Madison, Wisconsin. He is co-author with Robert McChesney of Dollarocracy. Gore Vidal said of him: “Of all the giant slayers now afoot in the great American desert John Nichols’s sword is the sharpest.”

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