Random Observations on McCutcheon v. FEC

1. It's not often that the game is given away so easily as it is in the judgment on the McCutcheon v FEC case at the Supreme Court. Chief Justice John Roberts writes, in his plurality opinion overturning aggregate campaign limits on donations to candidates and parties, "In a series of cases over the past 40 years, we have spelled out how to draw the constitutional line between the permissible goal of avoiding corruption in the political process and the impermissible desire simply to limit political speech. We have said that government regulation may not target the general gratitude a candidate may feel toward those who support him or his allies, or the political access such support may afford."

You got that? When Congressman Cashhumper decides to support a bill that says oil companies can murder and crush kittens because it might extract a little natural gas, it's cool, even if Amalgamated Greedy Bastard Oil and Gas donated shit tons of money to the Cashhumper campaign and millions more to sponsor a SuperPAC saying voters should only vote for the kitty-crushing candidate, not Mary Treehugger, who wants to stop you from getting all those blood-soaked jobs. According to the majority in McCutcheon, that's not graft. It's gratitude.

Then Roberts cites a case to support this truly warped, truly fucked-beyond-fucked idea, a precedent that helps with judgment in this case. He cites Citizens United, the truly warped, truly fucked-beyond-fucked decision that ripped the nipple off the baby bottle of campaign cash. Why does Roberts use that case? Because what the fuck else does he have? The McCutcheon decision tosses out other precedents onto the stare decisis dung heap that the Roberts court shits on with regularity. Indeed, Roberts cites Citizens United about a half-dozen times with masturbatory glee, like a toddler showing how he can grab his tiny boner. Except it's all done in the creepy, rationalizing tone of a serial killer explaining why he just has to eat your ear while you watch. Roberts' long game, as others have described it, is to make sure power stays where the powerful want it: with them.

2. The Rude Pundit is pretty sure that Roberts and the majority don't have a reasonable understanding of the word "corruption." The plurality opinion goes out of its way to state that unless someone hands a politician a wad of cash and says, "That is specifically to ensure that you vote for kitten crushing," it ain't corruption. If it ain't quid pro quo, it's cool. Roberts writes, "[W]hile preventing corruption or its appearance is a legitimate objective, Congress may target only a specific type of corruption-'quid pro quo' corruption...The line between quid pro quo corruption and general influence may seem vague at times, but the distinction must be respected in order to safeguard basic First Amendment rights."

Joining Roberts was Justice Antonin "Eyebrows of Doom" Scalia. Scalia went hunting and dined with then-Vice President Dick Cheney after the Supreme Court had accepted a 2004 case to decide whether or not Cheney had to disclose documents from his energy task force meetings. Scalia refused to recuse himself from the case because fuck you. Scalia saw no conflict of interest in palling around with a plaintiff in a case before him. So, yeah, they don't have a fucking clue what corruption is.

3. The second the Supreme Court said, as it did in Citizens United and other cases, that money equals speech, it said that some people have more speech than others. It codified oligarchy. It created a free speech caste system. You can have more speech if you have more money. In fact, in doing so, the court said that, by birth, there are people who have more speech and more ability to gain the gratitude of elected officials. You gotta wonder what the writers of the Constitution would think about that, about the creation of royalty by default. 'Cause, see, the Rude Pundit ain't no Cato Institute "scholar," but he's pretty sure that the Constitution didn't guarantee the chance to have free speech. It guaranteed free speech.

So when Roberts writes, "No matter how desirable it may seem, it is not an acceptable governmental objective to 'level the playing field,' or to 'level electoral opportunities,' or to 'equaliz[e] the financial resources of candidates,'" he is utterly, evilly wrong. Actually, that would specifically be an objective of government because a level playing field is the only way rights for all are guaranteed.

However, there is something Robert wrote that the Rude Pundit does agree with: "[U]nder the dissent's view, it is perfectly fine to contribute $5,200 to nine candidates but somehow corrupt to give the same amount to a tenth." That's not actually what Justice Stephen Breyer wrote in the dissent. It was more of a "for fuck's sake, can we have just a slight bit of moderation in our campaign finance laws?" But Roberts is right: it shouldn't be perfectly fine to contribute to nine candidates. It shouldn't be perfectly fine to contribute to any.

4. Clarence Thomas wrote something. Fuck that guy.

5. The solution here is simple: It's time to target wealthy conservatives and their businesses. It's time to use what little speech we have and make their lives as miserable as possible. Whenever they attempt to actually speak with voices instead of money, they should be shouted down. Wherever they go, they should be harassed about their beliefs. We should attempt to boycott their businesses. The Rude Pundit just deleted Firefox. It'd be pretty easy to turn that thing into the next Netscape. They need to be fucked with and fucked with until they're begging for a constitutional amendment to outlaw cash in politics.

There's far more dollars than people in this nation. What else do we have, we of the lesser speech? What do we have but volume and bodies?